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Timothy Leary

mechanical technology, which uses oil, metal, concrete, and is in material form, and the cybernetic technology which is invisible. Within two or three years of the computers, instead of the mainframe’s enormous bar and building it will be as small as a cigarette box. So that the basic virtue and ethical goal in the cybernetic society is no longer big is better, and more is better, but smaller. Throughout, the lesson is learned from Hermes Trismagistus: as above, so below, as in the larger, so in the smaller.

The greatest wisdom is always housed in the smallest package. I think I even said that in the Psychedelic Prayers twenty-eight years ago. Look at the DNA code. The DNA code is invisible, and yet the DNA code has enough information to build you an Amazon rain forest, or build a hundred David Browns. I mean it’s there. The point is certainly obvious. We’ve now learned that the atom is not just a bunch of billiard balls going around Bohr’s solar system. The atom, we have every reason to expect, is charged with enormous miniaturized information. The fact that we can’t decipher it is not the problem of the atom. That’s what quantum physics demonstrates.

See, matter and energy are frozen clusters of quarks. Matter is simply information which is frozen, and then it dissolves. So the smaller the information unit, the more efficient, and the more kindly, because you don’t have to chop down a forest of trees to build books. It can just be put on tiny little silicon chip. See, we’ve gone from carbon to silicon, because carbon is much more precious. Carbon is organic, whereas silicon is cybernetic. You want to have the silicon do whatever you can to spare the carbon, because the trees, bees and flowers are carbon based.

DJB: How do you feel about scientific progress these days, and what do you think is missing?

TIMOTHY: There’s been a wonderful surge of new and imaginative science in the last ten or fifteen years. Prigogine’s system theory, for example. Sheldrake’s morphogenetic resonance, and the notion of the hundred monkeys. Lovelock’s Gaia hypothesis. Terence McKenna. I could go on listing. All of these wonderful intuitions growing out of science have been landmarks. There’s just one little slip you have to add to it that makes it all click, and that is that all of these wonderful thinkers and prophets are talking about information. See, another thing I must say is that the key to information theory and quantum philosophy is the notion that there are no laws of the universe. That’s such a typical Victorian British Empire piece of shit, because the Judeo God is up there–he’s the judge, and he’s emitting laws and commandments, of all things.

DJB: How do you see the process of evolution working?

TIMOTHY: The way that evolution works at the level of astro-physics, or at the organic level, and even the level of human knowledge, is that it’s all based on algorithms. I won’t go into the details, but algorithms can be summed up as: if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if–then. So, if the sunlight is such, if the temperature is this, if the water level is this, if the meteorological stuff is this, and if there is enough nitrogen–Click–then it happens in every island around, all the leaves turn green. See, they’re programmed that way.

DJB: Have you thought about Bell’s Theorem, how the mechanism of nonlocality occurs?

TIMOTHY: This notion of the non-locality of cause–Bell’s Theorem and all that–seems kind of mysterious, unless it’s all information, of course. If you program an algorithm, you don’t set laws; you’re the program, and if the program is if, if, if, if–then, the same thing’s going to happen on the other side of the galaxy if it’s going to happen here. That’s the non-locality of cause. It’s totally comprehensible and inevitable if you understand it’s all information chains and codes, and they all pop up if, if, if, if–then. This is not in any way a reductionist perspective. Another one of the problems of a soft philosophy and hard philosophy is reductionism.

There’s no reductionism here because if you’ve played around with algorithms, like fractals for example, you realize that you never know what’s going to happen. They asked Fredkin–who’s the great prophet of all this–“Are you saying that God is some crazed computer hacker in the sky, who’s writing all these programs for stars, and atoms?” If there are two of you, and one of me, and you’re hydrogen, and I’m oxygen, we get water, see? But, if that’s the if.

Fredkin said, “Well, I don’t know about trying to identify the intelligence that set these algorithms up; we’re too crude right now to speculate, but I’ll tell you one thing about it. Whoever he, she, it, or they were who wrote these algorithms, they’re surprised as hell every time because—quick—oh my god—look what they’re doing now!” If you’ve ever seen how a fractal program operates, you know that these incredible forms develop, and yet they always come back to

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