served in a Pennsylvania hospital until the end of the War. nutmeg.PLAYBOY INTERVIEW:
a candid conversation with
1 llVlvJ 1
ex-harvard professor. a retired Army career officer. we've had only four
two or of prolonged psychoses three weeks after the session. mind-manifesting) chemthat have created a national fad
Foundation Hospital and as an assistant professor at UC's School of Medicine in San Francisco Leary began to display the courage and sometimes rash iconoclasm that have since marked every phase
of his checkered career. There is no question that LSD is the most powerful aphrodisiac ever discovered by man. A."
"An enormous amount of energy from every fiber of your body is released under LSD especially sexual energy. but it was above all and without
question ence of
transferred to the University of Alabama did he begin to settle down academically to work for his B.
plying followers began to with the other psychedelics:
in the press. and by 1962 had become an underground cult among the
"In 3000 people that I have personally observed taking LSD." and
best-selling book "Games to both preach and
coaster rides so spectacular that it soon became Leary 's primary tool for research. The next five hours could be described in many.
generally were the legendary "sacred
profound. he resigned in 1958 and signed up as a lecturer on clinical psychology at Harvard. would have less likely to emerge as a reli-
Few men. And as ivord began to circulate about the
fantastic. the chemical derivative of the sacred mushrooms. mescaline and a colorless. a
handful of odd-looking mushrooms he'd bought from the witch doctor of a nearby village."
"I think that
anyone who wants
a psychedelic experience and is willing to prepare for it and to examine his own
hang-ups and neurotic tendencies should be allowed to have a crack at it. Acquiring both eminence and enemies with his first major jobs as director of Oakland's progressive Kaiser
to begin his associates
the rest of my life as a psychologist to the systematic exploration of this new instrument. first synthesized in 1938 by a Swiss biochemist
seeking a pain killer for migraine headaches.extravagant metaphors. beside the swimming pool of his rented summer villa in Cuernavaca.
morningglory seeds. Within minutes. marijuana."
graduation in 1942. let alone as a rebel with a cause. conceded for
however. odorless. Not until he
edge of a sensory niagara into a maelstrom of transcendental visions and hallucinations. few of these novel notions went over very well with hidebound colLeary' s
leagues. LSD sent its hallucinated
on multihued. he recalled later. D." he and his rapidly multi-
mushrooms" become known. predictably enough. in psychology. On
Leary returned to Harvard in 1960 from his pioneering voyage into inner space
in Cuernavaexperimenting on himself."
in their youth. prime partisan and prophet of LSD
problems such as alcoholism where they germinate rather than in the textbook
or the laboratory. and hundreds of volunteer subjects with measured doses of psilocybin. as one of the psycheicals
delic (literally. then resumed his schooling and earned his Ph. Leary distressed
practice the effective but unconventional new psychiatric research technique of
his students to study
campus kick. phantasmagorical "trips" taken by his students. There he began to evolve and enunciate the theory of social interplay and personal behavior as so many stylized games. he enlisted as an Army psychologist. multileveled
bomb. it soon became a clan-
The implications of communion are as yet
unmeasured. But their rumblings of skepticism rose to a chorus of outrage when
On a sunny Saturday afternoon in 1960. then affronted his father. since popularized by Dr. peyote. Vowing "to dedicate
young and a scandal The American was a Har-
Contending that methods were psychiatric
psychotherapist named Timothy Leary. A hundred times stronger than psilocybin. At the age of 19. At the time. All of these had been in a mental hospital before. Eric
tory compound called LSD 23. at the University of California at Berkeley. who has since found himself transmogrified from scientist and researcher into progenitor and high priest of a revolutionary movement spawned not by an
idea but by a substance that's been called "the spiritual equivalent of the hydrogen
hurling as many patients as they helped.
by walking out of West Point after 18 interests were philosophic rather than militaristic"). he felt himself "being swept over the
39-year-old American ate
his Roman Catholic mother by abandoning Holy Cross two years before gradua-
gion didn't turn me on"). and
feared by many.
Richard Alpert. Instead of sitting
to a third-floor in one of
know at least one person who has had a good experience with marijuana or LSD.
consciousness whatever the cost. But soon afterward came a dramatic lllh-hour reprieve from a young New York millionaire named William Hitchcock. PLAYBOY: Why.* have
The ones who do. the LSD controversy has continued to escalate along with Leary's notoriety spurred by
a spate of headline stories delic psychoses. and his colleague Dr. the
psychedelic drug means ecstasy. religious experience. The breakthrough has occurred. PLAYBOY: What do you say to the standard charge that LSD is too powerful and
dangerous to entrust to the young? LEARY: Well. He's
dog to this conditioned reflex. Consenting readily. to make love. and three states CaliNevada and New Jersey enacted
fiend-crime. at the end of one year. government
Leary to present his side of the psychedelic story and to answer a few pertinent its questions about putative promise and its alleged perils. 000 and sentenced to 30 years
in prison for transporting
15 percent of
understand and support what I'm doing. The
Leary had now become not only the messiah but the martyr of the psychedelic movement. have you called for a one-year "cease-fire" on the use of LSD
mission and toward that end turned over to him a rambling
the mattress. ready for our
two generations of
never been beings so far
apart living essentially in two different worlds. stepped out of an open window onto a tin roof over a secondfloor bay window. my life has been renewed in almost every dimension. Evolutionary misunderstanding causes bloodshed and imprisonment. feel that I've become an eccentric and a
kook. he crossed the room. which "regretfully" dismissed Leary.
viction. you know what he's going to think and feel
about LSD. looked down at the
vast rolling meadow of a lawn. then. of course. to exercise their constitutional
marijuana and pay the Federal marijuana tax. and arrested four people including Leary. the "drug" means one of two things:
conducted widely publicized public
fornia. he opened his shirt to the warm summer sun. On April 16 of this year. and demanded that they leave the country. At that time. he was fined f 30. The horizons of the current younger generation. Since that time.
involved that they intend to resume the use of psychedelics. and proceeded to stretch out on a double-width mattress a few feet from the edge. was 39 when I had my first psychedelic experience." Late that night. To people under 25. If convicted. as you might expect. Already appealing another con-
to answer easily. however. a veteran LSD voyager who believed in the importance of Leary's
the room's well-worn easy chairs. but before they could resume full-scale LSD the Mexican sessions.
in. he invited us to visit him in Millbrook. to
going to change
mind. in terms of expanded consciousness. energizers and stupefiers to
gubernatorial nomination in California. illumination. New York. He greeted us
anticipating adverse popular reaction. he could be fined heavily and sent to prison for 16 years. contact with nature. Why?
laws prohibiting its illicit use. possession. I'll back the 15-yearold every time. searched
top to bottom. middle-class authority. Mexico.
insanity" from police
officials. There's not a teenager or young person in the United States today who doesn't
(IFIF). and pious editorials inveighing against the evils of the drug. which has since become not only Leary's home and headquarters but also a kind of shrine and sanctuary
for psychedelic pilgrims from all over the world.
Reagan even dragged the issue into his campaign for the Republican
it had also become something an embarrassment to Harvard. there's no going back.
moratorium on hysterical legislation and on punitive arrests of young people for the possession of LSD and marijuana. As you move up the age scale into the 30s. It is a
powerful releaser of energy as yet not But if I'm confronted with the possibility that a 15-year-old or
and to their jailwhat LSD and marijuana are. Despite his claim that the drug was
middle-aged process of dying.
times have you used
younger generation to cool it for a year and to use this moratorium period to ex-
LSD. revelation.young avant-garde from London
Angeles. I'm demanding that this period also be a
had been arrested in Laredo the previous December as he was about to enter Mexico for a vacation. By 1963. for personal growth. With a ringing appeal for still more stringent legislation on a Federal level. I've asked the
question. Undaunted. 40s and 50s fewer and fewer people are open to the
possibilities that these chemicals offer. six years ago. tend to be among the younger psychologists. but to most Americans under 25.
Most of my colleagues at the University of California and at Harvard. my sensual openness.
. Dr. PLAYBOY: What do you think
descended on the place. In May and June. propped his bare feet against the shingles. it may be synonymous with instant insanity. Many 50year-olds have lost their curiosity.
we found him a few days Hindu morning prayers
with a group of guests in the kitchen of the 64-room mansion. My joy in life. they organized a privately
financed research group called the International Foundation for Internal Freepsychedelic study center in Zihuatanejo. my creativity were all sliding downhill.
LSD. distribution or manufacture. in order to stem the rising tide of avid un-
wide range of mind benders running from alcohol. the word "drug" refers to
frozen like a Pavlovian
intensify sensation. Leary
when Customs officials searched his car and found a half ounce of marijuana in
the possession of his 18-year-old daughter. where
middle-aged America. for curiosity.
against the drug that
mounting outcry playboy asked Dr. on the other hand. Leary?
by what Leary calls "the forces of middleaged. two Senate subcommit-
the person over 35 or 40. a squad of Duchess County police
moment. and then turned.
dergraduate interest in the drug. While we made ourself comfortable at the other end of
psychedelic battle is won.
library. sensual unfolding.
Nothing you can
say to a person neurological fix on the
a 50-year-old is going to use a new form of energy that he doesn't understand. But I
suggested this as a conciliatory gesture to mollify and educate the older generation and to allow time for the younger people
to learn more about how to turn on. Ronald
Because a 15-year-old new form of energy
going to use a have fun. listened for a moment to the song of a chickadee in the branches of a tree nearby. are light-years beyond those
of their parents. I
plain to their parents
psychedelic sessions. If you know a person's age. speaking two different languages as the people under 25 and the older
his 4000-acre estate in Mill-
furtherance of his work and his spiritual beliefs (as a practicing Hindu). none of us yet knows exactly how LSD can be used for the growth and benefit of the human being.
drugs. Psychedelic drugs are the medium of the young. it also became a target for further harassment
relieve this situation. found a minute quantity of marijuana. I was a middle-aged man involved
have made clear that this is a voluntary waiving of the constitutional right to change your own consciousness.
hi the months since then. the older generation
use in the
that fewer than
predict and indeed urge a firm statement on the part of everyone
cease-fire. If. and why we want and intend to use them.
moderate dose. we are aware of static symbols. it's as though you have microscopes up to your eyes.
the sense of sight. artificial gas that you used
Throughout human history. any more than you feel like eating when you take your first
IEARY: Find a beloved friend
LSD and how
through your body. and again. men who have wanted to expand their consciousto find deeper meaning inside ness. you are the sound.
and energy. you're aware of thousands of penetrating chemical messages floating from her through the air into your sensory center: a symphony of a
thousand odors that
but patterns of light bouncing the objects around you and hurtling at the speed of light into the mosaic of rods and cones in the retina of your eye. radiant details
of anything your eye falls upon. the fragrance of her clothing grenades of eroticism exploding in the olfactory cell.
LEARY: Tremendously. though for the first time you
tainly late the law. suddenly the show comes alive. pulsating.
them and turn on with them. So it doesn't concern me at all that young people are taking time out from the
your brain every second. although normally you won't feel like eating during an LSD session.
When you sit woman during
2000 miles to find spiritual teachers
would turn them on to Buddha. to dabble with new forms of experience
artistic expression. while you slowly orbit
and lightly touched the palm of my hand with her finger.
things. and I would not advise anyone to
this. slowly swelling movement will continue through the several hours of
and experienced guide you on a trip. you're suddenly flooded by hundreds of lights and colors and sensations and
the piano. for hundreds of years. there
an appreciation of
sion. PLAYBOY: And this rapture was erotic?
PLAYBOY: For a session lasting how long? LEARY: Eight to twelve hours. And every one of your organs pulsating and having orgasms in
rhythm with it.
ing them. powerful force unloose and radiate beginning to
effect takes hold. her sweat.
not prepared for thousand million signals
around it. You sense a strange.
In any case. exploding in your
with ecstatic meaning.
alive. Then. PLAYBOY: If you can't say where one could buy LSD. You not only hear but see the music emerging from the speaker system like dancing particles. Under LSD. But when your nervous system is turned on with LSD. symbolic perception of learned
millions of microscopic strands of olfacnostory ticker tape. you are the note. too. and this relentless. or is it mostly just swallowed in a sugar cube? LEARY: It can be injected or it can come in the form of powder or pills or in a
alive. At the same time. my wife's finger
exploded in pure. The vibrations seem to penetrate deep inside you. LEARY: That's true. And. distance between
speaking in a general way. while you're hearing it.
sponsible of me to reveal authorized manufacture of
against the law. in which you see jewellike.
so. for an endless glittering. comes the second note of the sonata. PLAYBOY: How about the sense of smell? LEARY: This is one of the most over-
aspects of an LSD experience.
everything begins to move.
life. You hear one note of a Bach sonata.
LSD session. you discover that you're actually inhaling an atmosphere composed of
we should support them. In normal perception. in an awklife
iency and viscosity such as we are not conscious of in a normal state of awareness. the organ of Corti in your inner ear be-
wife leaned over
odorless. The present generation under the age of 25 is the wisest and holiest generation that the human race has ever seen. by God. PLAYBOY: What's it like? What happens to
comes a trembling membrane seething with tattoos of sound waves. what happens to everyone is the experience of incredible acceleration and
all senses and of all which can be very conit. first thing you notice is an incredenhancement of sensory awareness.
waves into your
retina. have been able to do it if they were willing to commit the time
to consider air.
that last suggestion. hundreds of years later. during any second in an LSD session.
she uses. and reflecting on the history of music. or find a trusted
voyager to PLAYBOY: Is it necessary to have a guide? LEARY: Yes. you slowly drift around the two notes. Instead of having just one or two or
three things happening in tidy sequence. infiltrated with thousands of silver wires hurtling energy back and forth. can you tell us the formula for making it? We understand it can be synthesized in any well-equipped chemical
laboratory. and it hangs there. die sound of somebody's words. like squirming curls of toothpaste. it can lead to incredible ecstasy or it can
lead to confusion.
delicate pleasure. quisite energy pulsed from
Wave upon wave
delicate. observing the harmony and the discords. PLAYBOY: What happens to the sense of
solo at the controls of a supersonic jet. Unless you have an experienced guide at least for your first 10 or 15 sessions it would be extremely
reckless. and you remember with amusement and distaste that plastic. Although if you eat after a session. instead
messages from different parts of your body. how do you take it? Can it be injected.
we wanted to take you up on how would we go
images. the senses begin to overlap
and the palm of my hand was about 50 miles of space. Wave after wave of exher finger. You actually see the sound.
The unLSD is now
the sense of hearing similarly
PLAYBOY: Assuming you can get it. Mohammed or Ramakrishna. you find yourself tuned in on thousands of these
messages that ordinarily you don't register consciously. Ecstatic ener-
up my arms and rocketed
where another hundred
brain. in multicolored patterns. I
is against the law.
length of time. you are the string of the violin or
educational and occupational assembly lines to experiment with consciousness. the exhaust and discharge from her digestive system.
qualities of food
a person can't find either a guide or a source of LSD among his friends? Where does he go?
caught in a still ward. Since you're not used to this. During the LSD experience.
of ethereal tissue rap-
shuddering coursed back and forth from her finger to my palm. and all the wires
are flashing. impersonal.
men would walk
In other times and barefooted
normal vision as normal vision is to the picture on a badly tuned television set. odorless. control and warfare. And you may be getting an incredible number of simultaneous
and merge. swell and burst there. you're deal-
ing with a very minute quantity. But when you turn on with LSD. Immediately a hundred thousand end cells in my hand
orgasm. Everything is diamond-bright light
shampoo every her cologne. her sexual perfume. Some people are freaked by this niagara of sensory input. filled
with cotton candy. balloons out to several dimensions and becomes irradiated with
though for all of your you have been photograph.dulled their openness to new sensations. You not are really seeing for the first time static.
colorless. PLAYBOY: Does the sense of touch become
erotic. stereotyped posture. Ordinarily we hear just isolated sounds: the rings of a tele-
Touch becomes electric as well as I remember a moment during one
phone. and you can get quite lost. and would use any form of new energy for power.
intensified. It's all lovemaking. with a bowl of fruit on the table. because it's almost inevitable that a
three inevitable goals of the session are to discover and make
perience the man has had. it will lead to a deeper experience than they ever thought possible. it increases your sensitivity a
child says. middle-class monolith down on your head.
LEARY: Every time I've taken it. that's part of it. I'm under a 30year sentence of imprisonment. PLAYBOY: Including that of a
physiological comparison. and unless clumsiness or fright on the part of one or the other blocks it. At the
of the great lessons I've learned from LSD is that every man contains the essence of all men and every woman has
within her all women.
among the young I feel I'm free at this moment to say what we've never
ply generates genital energy. another half hour making love with breath. I can only compare what I was with what I am now. "Well. PIAYBOY: Would you elaborate? LEARY: I'm saying simply that sex under LSD becomes miraculously enhanced
PLAYBOY: Can you describe the sensation of an orgasm under LSD?
LEARY: Only the most reckless poet would attempt that. however.LEARY:
Transcendentally. PLAYBOY: Still. PLAYBOY: This aspect of
profound emotional bonds. "Daddy. flowing. PLAYBOY: How often have you under the influence of LSD?
have several hundred orgasms. to the point of exhaustion. however. Is this true?
LEARY: Inevitably. The first ten times you take it. because it's not like anything that's ever happened to
aren't words adequate to anyway. You make love with candlelight. it's like that but much.
though every have trillions
making love under LSD. communion. PLAYBOY: Are you preaching psychedelic
helps you find divinity and helps you discover yourself. But then if you announce that the
to say that
LEARY: Well. not
that sexual ecstasy basic reason for the current LSD
the child says. with horror and ecstasy. You must be very careful to take it only with someone you know really well.
psychedelic experience is basically a sexual experience. It doesn't automatically produce a longer erection.
ing his or her
the erogenous zones. I have always been extremely cautious about running sessions with men and women." And the child says.
these powerful urges develop. sexual communication involves one's own
chemicals. You won't know what it's like until you try it yourself and then I won't need to tell you. Rather. can develop as a result of an LSD session bonds that can last a lifetime. It
hang-up for many
crude and vulgar a concept as wondering how much she paid
and women. sure. which
for a 45-year-old man is essentially a life term. then?"
department-store-window dummy. "Well. union. concept. The natural and obvious way to take LSD is with a member of the opposite sex. yielding.
cells. Ordinarily. As you spin through a thousand sensory and cellular organic
changes. and to discover and
my openness to. middle-class authority can do to me and since the secret is out anyway
most powerful aphrodisiac ever discovered by man. From the beginning of our research. For this reason. of course. youthful social boom? You can no more do research on LSD and leave out sexual ecstasy than you can do microscopic research
ecstatic the pleasure you think you from it is like making love to a
session. too." In short. "Well. I am under in-
dictment on a second marijuana offense
involving a 16-year sentence. the head of the
thousand percent. but did you really think that sex wasn't the fundamental reason for this surging. that their sexual energies will be unimaginably intensified. Let me put it this way: Compared with sex under LSD. I opened my eyes and
to. Is that true?
LSD is not an automatic trigger to sexual awakening. how many can a man have under optimum
would depend entirely on the and psychedelic ex-
almost inevitable. the longer and
more meaningful your sexual communion.
the energy around you. "What does one say to a little child?" The child says. "Is it fun like chocolate ice cream?" and you say.
Goddard. You're in pulsating harmony with
about. and you can't make it with a woman until you've made it with yourself.
woman will fall in love man who shares her LSD expelasting
love with God. Several hundred. the open but private secret about LSD. Your hand doesn't caher skin but sinks down into and
prepared. the richer. and an LSD session that does not involve an ultimate merging with a
with person of the opposite sex isn't really complete. what is sex like?" and you try to describe it. much
Food and Drug Administration. Why? LEARY: The sexual impact is. it's as cell in your body and you is making love with every in her body.
PLAYBOY: We've heard about sessions in which couples make love for hours on
end. PLAYBOY: Several hundred} LEARY: Yes. pressure
you say. But it depends
can't generalize. is it fun like the circus?" and you say. In fact. You're already in trouble when you say that. my responsiveness my participation in every form of
with a woman. PLAYBOY: We've heard that some women who ordinarily have difficulty achieving
orgasm find themselves capable of multiple orgasms under LSD.
responsibly after the session. which none of us has talked about in the
sensory expression has thousandfold. with sound waves from a record player. the idea of having sex
irrelevant or incomprehenthe moment. If a woman can have several hundred orgasms.
present time. I can't tell you what it's like. they are directed in ways that can be lived out
few years. that is what the LSD experience is all
for the negligee.
of energy from every fiber of your body is released under LSD most sexual especially including energy. you're asking to bring the whole middle-aged. I have to say to you. announced in a Senate hearing that ten
percent of our college students are taking LSD. she does. "Is
like the roller coaster. The more
LSD has been hinted at privately but never spelled out in public until now. I have been aware of this tremendous personal power in LSD. We always try to have a subject's husband or wife present durimprints. there
must be some
Merging. You can't
with yourself unless you've made the timeless energy process around you.
interactions of a
very localized nature
vulgar. with the trees. I remember a session a few years ago in which. Since there hardly anything more that -middleaged.
merges with ancient dynamos of ecstasy
within her. but it's even more than that. but
expanded your consciousness the farther out you can move beyond your mind the deeper. In the last six
years. and in addition. I think. did you ever wonder why? God and Sure. you might not be able
have a sexual experience at
all. "Well. One of the great purposes of an LSD session is sexual union.
and cellular communion on LSD. to discover and make love with yourself.
Dr. they're discovering meaning. if a man and his mate take LSD together. you may spend a half hour making love with eyeballs. they're discovering themselves. I can speak only for myself and about my own experience.
rience. PLAYBOY: What about a man? LEARY: This preoccupation with the number of orgasms
you're so overwhelmed and deor frightened and confused lighted by the novelty. the way you've been making love no matter
exactly like that. but never seem to reach exhaustion.
however. The LSD experience puts you in touch with the wisdom of your body. we've found that in giving LSD to members of monastic sects. worldly-wise Oriental whore who had seen every sight of life repeated a thousand times. As a matter
your horror that you're living a robot existence. be-
was flowing in her body bridged the gap. PLAYBOY: According to some reports. It's a highly individual situation. do you mean complete sexual fidelity to one woman?
not going to work. is rarely
just going to cite such a extremely attractive girl came down to our training center in Mexico. As my eyes were riveted to hers.
me. as a baby. This involves time and com-
ing LSD with someone else. Do you disapprove of the idea of casual romance catalyzed by LSD?
one of our cottages and beach and saw this
For the same reasons. and the people might become quite isolated from each other. Nothing good can happen with LSD if it's used crudely or for power or
at you. LSD is also a powerful panacea for impotence and frigidity. you are voluntarily relinquishing all of your personality defenses and opening yourself up in a very vulnerable manner. Highly
come. but that your wife had an LSD session with somebody else. On LSD. I saw her as a witch.
see. there might come a desire to renounce this hollow existence. I have said for many years now that in the fu-
ture the grounds for divorce would not be that your wife went to bed with an-
upon meeting. if any. Several were men in
to find different
running mates is a
very low-level concept.
charismatic person who is conscious of his own mythic potency awakens this basic hunger in women and pays rever-
it at the level that is harmonious and appropriate at the time. and she'd laugh you'd look like a monster and she'd scream and go into a paranoid state.
your impotency. if you
in a bathing suit and. She was at an
case. coming on with some heavy-handed. At this point. I'm
no one to tell anyone do. or
girls coming off the assembly month. Is there any truth to that. but an inexperienced person would probably find it extremely confusing." Now. but all of her energy was devoted to making it with girls. a Madonna.
other man and bounced around on a mattress for an hour or two. PLAYBOY: How often do you return diis
male. quite them turn on to you. there has been a definite tendency for them to leave the monastic life and to find a mating relationship. all woman. a tired. Her subsequent sexual choices were almost exclusively
six years. Conversely. there would be an immediate and deep rapport
you took a
trip together. PLAYBOY: Has
session several years one of many
sage-mythic male to open up and share her own divinity. a Byzantine virgin. of your nervous system. It's well known that most sexual perverLEARY:
a lot of
in the company of women. because the bonds and the connections that develop are so powerful. devilishly. her eyes would be microscopic. Bui this
such cases. You'd look
of the opposite sex. I saw her as a young girl.
gidity. that I've been extremely monogamous in my use of LSD over the last
the vehicle of such communication. you there can come a microscopic perof
PLAYBOY: When you speak of monogamy. PLAYBOY: Suppose you met a girl at a party. and you both decided to share an LSD trip
basic cellular fact
under LSD. resignedly. When you're confronted witli this
ity. to go away and from the world like a monk while you figure out what kind of a life you want to go back to. implications of
experience for sex and mating. or your fricaused by neuropsychological
not just one
another with one young body after another. If you
hang-ups of fear or shame that make no sense to your cells. But
kind of neurological
cellular fidelity that develops. She was all women. quizzically. your wife and your family are stereotyped. the fact is that a specific cure for homosexuality. a world of expanding
are living in in
which there are more and more beauti-
Is he right? IEARY: For the most part. dislocating childhood experiences of one kind or another. Consequently. both of which. Compulsive body grabbing. knowing every
is no question that a charismatic public figure does generate attraction and stimulate a sexual response. a friend of yours told us that you could have two or three different
to. developed an immediate rapport. that they are basically
females. like homosexualare symbolic screw-ups. I have lived very quietly in our
would be able
had more than one long-term relationship during this period. you
night. that your relationships with your boss. who has openly stated that the first time he turned on to women
thought that she had ever had.
your thoughts. of your cells. During LSD sessions. merge with me. PLAYBOY: Does LSD always work as a sexual cure-all?
LEARY: Certainly not. the more obvious it becomes that it's constructed and designed to procreate and keep the life stream going.
sexually in the seductive sense. it's not surprising that we've had many cases of long-term homosexuals who.
imply you've had only one bed partner in the
last six years?
Do you mean
and the girl are ready to do this. a radiant queen. hear
has built into her
longing for a hero-
was during an ago. of your organs. And the closer you get to the message of the body. They might be whirled into the rapture or confusion of their own inner workings and forget entirely that the other
One man may take LSD and leave wife and family and go off to be a monk on the banks of the Ganges. that have nothing to do with the biochemical forces inside
your body urging you to merge and mate with a member of the opposite sex. then you'll be a very humiliated and embarrassed person. and that what's demanded of creatures with our sensory and cellular repertoire
unpredictable. But casual sexual encounters do not satisfy this deep longing. But
in highly enthusiastic social gatherings. It's obvious that the
sexual criteria of the past are going to be changed. join me. a nagging crone. LSD is no guarantee of any specific social or sexual out-
to the voyage. experiencing everything that she was experiencing.
are the result not of biological binds but of freaky. her face began to melt and change. and she'd see very plainly what you were up to. Another may take LSD and go back to his wife. always inviting: "See me.flash! time in her life the cellu-
think. empty and devoid of meaning.
Well. as an old woman with gray hair and seamy. in your opinion?
the contrary. She was a Lesbian and she was very active sexually. are obvious. LSD can trigger the acting out of latent ho-
mosexual impulses in ostensibly heterosexual men and women. discover that they are not only genitally but genetsions
. wrinkled face. under LSD. during the last six years. I It's because of this. the essence of female
eyes smiling. keep the dance going. but the exploration of the incredible depths
those circumstances? LEARY: You must remember that in tak-
identity with a single member of the opposite sex. PLAYBOY: It's been reported that when
person is there. But I would say.looked into the eyes of my wife and was pulled into the deep blue pools of her being floating softly in the center of her mind. not because of moral restrictions or restraints. The most famous and public of such cases is that of Allen Ginsberg. mustache-twisting routine. the.
superstitious system of system of conscious-
fore. it creates psychosis. is basically to get high: that is. It's not coincidental that of all those I've given LSD to. in which awareness is hooked to conditioned symhols: flags. Being swallowed up this way by the tissue industries and the bloody.
sleep or stupor. alcohol.
because the fact
isolating discovery. Anything else is insanity. sensitive registration of sensory stimulation: the Arab
ness attested to by the experience of hundreds of thousands of trained voyagers who've taken LSD defines many different levels of awareness." What do vou think? LEARY: Well.
our lifetimes we will have these opened
to us. Dr. The LSD
you see. Gerald Klee.their late 40s
15 or 20 years. barbiturates and our national stuporfactant. Well. subcellular worlds of shuttling
religious? IEARY: It depends
to have something that will symbols and open up your billions of sensory cameras to the billions of impulses that are hitting them. cosmic beat.
impulse at any level of organic life.
and symbols and even
sleep and symbolic normal awareness. that nothing exists except in the chemistry of your own consciousness.
generation. in fact. So by conventional definition. there have been wholesale defections of monks and nuns who left
their religious orders to get married after a series of LSD experiences. that
comes from a deplorable. and consciousness whirls into eerie panoramas for which we have no words or concepts. In what way is the LSD experience
A great LSD by its
it. has written:
stronger psychedelics such as mescaline and LSD take you beyond the senses into a world of cellular awareness. the Indian cultures. of course. and you're pulsing in harmony with its primal. has been couched in terms of religious mysticism. party affiliations and the like. Here
the comfortable world of
it. My contention
In the same way. This. however. perhaps.000 other and everything you know comes from a communication exchange at the
during a session?
By any conventional
definition. and one of these is the sexual impulse. bluenosed bureaucrats who run the narcotics agencies.
energy feeding on your sense organs. The second level of consciousness is the conventional wakeful state. penetrated to the ultimate nature of matter. job titles.
than 200 ministers. it releases potent. Your nerve cells are aware as Professor Einstein wis aware that all matter. But we must bid a sad farewell to the sensory level of consciousness and go on
to the fourth level. softly propelled through endless cellular factories. the religious group more
down dark red waterways through capillary canals.
about half of
does expand the consciousness. This is the level that most people including
lentlessly. In terms of his conventional symbol game.
"Those who say LSD expands consciousness would have the task of defining the
PLAYBOY: Dr. For the first time in their lives. impersonal world of raw
consider my work basically religious. whiskey-drinking. For the experienced voyager. like the aim of LSD. clicking. This experience of awe and revelation is often dereligion. but ture age returned
who had been monks for who even at this mato
society. is an overwhelming awakening of experience. of discovering "divinity" through LSD.
often screams out: "I'm dead!" And he sits there transfigured with fear. afraid
to move. to expand your consciousness and find ecstasy and revelation within. but full of reverence and wonder. And every happen. all structure. there is because nobody that moment of terror
metaphor that's most accurate is metaphor of the microscope. You spoke earlier. Now.
symbolic consciousness. which men call "divine. It is marijuana. If they
sometimes limited temporally or nationally to discover the inner potential.
powerful life forces that they had walled off with ritualized defenses and
self-delusions. almost all
scribed as religious. which is the strongsession. the neurological fact of the matter is that every one of your 13 billion brain
cells. chugging. The chemical that opens the door to this level has been well known for centuries to cul-
pulsating white waves. primal energies.of the National Institute of Mental Health.
nerve endings of your
cells. thus. the cultures.
one is even more This is the prece\experienced
the half of
level. because most of them are of the younger
heavy dosage of LSD." From the psychedelic point of view. and the world
deal of what
generation." Suddenly you realize that everything you thought of as reality or even as life itself including your body is just a dance
of particles. You find yourself horribly alone in a dead. this revelation can be exalting: You've climbed inside Einstein's formula.
question that marijuana is a sensual stimulator and this explains not only why it's favored by young people but why it arouses fear and panic among the middle-aged. divinity students and nuns has experienced the most intense sexual reaction. But when it first really happens to you.
the soft tissue
sinking of your
down into own body.
sinewy carryings-on inside your body can be an appalling experience the first time it happens to you. the LSD experience is a confrontation with new forms of wisdom and energy that dwarf and humiliate man's mind.
the 311 times I've taken
LSD. which is produced by narcotics. priests. PLAYBOY: Is there a fifth level of awareness?
Yes. brand names. LSD is Westreligions are attempts
they were missing. including you. conventional definition of consciousness
that psychiatrists have been taught: that there are two levels of consciousness
enormous clusters of these cells are turned on.
the heterosexual adjustment. into silent. is one of the oldest Oriental philosophic notions.
level of awareness. There
Mogul is no
4000 years of recorded history as "the white light" or the "dance of energy. middle-class. You become aware of processes you were never tuned in to be-
precellular? LEARY: I hope so. through the experience of LSD. ancient fibrous clockworks
What are The lowest
level of consciousness
ticking. PLAYBOY: Has this happened to you often
gion. these people were meeting head on the
awareness. But it can also be an awesome one fearful. and I hope that within
primitive and consciousness. and this is I think would be of
particular interest to playboy readers.
been reported by mysand visionaries throughout the last
tures that stress delicate.
terrifying. LSD brings into awareness the cellular conversations that are
inaudible to the normal consciousness
level of consciousness
that his definition
row. In order to reach
on what you mean by For almost everyone. dollar signs. he's using the narrow. because it has as its goal the systematic expansion of consciousness and the discovery of energies within. which is much more sensual than the puritanical Americans of the
pulsating energy. no matter how
much experience you've had.
level. it can come as a
terrorizing. LSD does not expand
brings into awareness cellular patterns that are invisible to the naked eye.
We know that there of energy within other levels many and around us. there is a shatmoment in the deep psychedelic session when your body.
call the cel-
ern yoga. And in two
religious groups that prize chastity and celibacy. well. Klee is right.
hooked up to some 25.
which we have no adequate symbolic language.
dropouts" LSD users who find themselves divested of motivation. What an exciting prospect: a generation of crea-
Remember. through the eons. I've concluded that the imprints most deeply engraved in the neurological memory bank have to do with these moments of life-affirming exultation and exhilaration in the perpetuation and survival of the species. artisans and writers. This is not true.
your protein cellular strands.
sound. can never be checked on by external observation. it's the college kids who the smartest and most are turning on promising of the youngsters.
anyone questions the social order. If all the Negroes and left-wing college students in the world had Cadillacs and full control of society. from tidal wave and avalanche. on beaches. Some are already forming small communities out of the country. Psychedelic industries may involve
possible to travel
back in time at
ready wrought revolutionary changes in
culture. how can you be sure it's memory rather than a vivid hallucination? LEARY: It's possible to check out some of these ancient memories. they would still be involved in an anthill social system unless they opened themselves up
making. many former campus activists who've gone the LSD route are "more concerned with what's happening in their heads than what's happening in the world. Built within every cell are molecular strands of memory and awareness called the DNA code the genetic blueprint that has designed and executed the conis
all the time. Current models of social adjustment
struction of your body. Who can possibly corroborate what your nervous system picked up before your birth. from conspiracy. you can release these memories of the nine
socialized. there are certain
nothing to worry about. The automatic. but countless
events from early and even intra-uterine life are registered in your brain and can be flashed into consciousness during an
which my forebears escape from fang. in haystacks. to express a more harmonious message. but for the most
imagination it's the most exciting adventure I've ever been involved in. "Drop out" means to detach yourself from the tribal game. And this new psychedelic style has produced not only a new rhythm in modern music but a new decor for our discotheques. Every has resulted from the stern pressure of visionary men who have declared their
larger society to historical advance
PLAYBOY: Tell us more about these visions. In every generation of human history. I've charted my own family tree and traced it back
particular project that I've
as far as
can. I often run
thinking. you'd find that at least 80 percent are using psychedelic drugs in a systematic way."
reflex reaction of society to the is panic and irritation.
what you do on the outside unless you change the inside. we don't buy your model. unable to readjust to reality or to resume
their roles in society?
PLAYBOY: What will they do? LEARY: Don't worry. refusing to
months before you perilous and exciting were born? PLAYBOY: Can these memory visions be
intellectualized. Some will live under-
been working on most recently with LSD. The LSD experience does not lead to passivity and withdrawit spurs a driving hunger to communicate in new forms.
is. When LSD subjects report retrogression and
reincarnation visions. We're going to try something new". on the moist jungle floor and moments of crisis in
lurch ahead. smell.
that shocked PLAYBOY: What sort of goings on? scenes LEARY: Moments of propagation
LSD sessions goings on my 20th Century person.
LEARY: There's a certain
in that. in canopied beds. from spear. a rather
memories of every previous organism that has contributed to your present existence. PLAYBOY: Do you merely remember them. It's cheer. In your DNA code. PLAYBOY: With what success?
of rough ancestral sexuality in Irish barrooms. to live a better life.
can't. can be stated in six syllables: Turn on. J. you have the genetic history of your father and
goes back. a new
in the uterus.
have turned on
and dropped out of the
step. PLAYBOY: In this connection. according to a spokesman for the student left.
and has our philosophic and
literature. and which I have been passing on to others. inside your mother? But the obvious fact is that your nervous system was operating while you were still
concern yourself more
leads you to with internal or
ground as self-employed artists. Some will
return to the establishment and inject their new ideas. B. back about 300 years. angry reaction to the creative dropout is that he will become a parasite on the hard-working. Psychedelic businesses are springing up: bookstores. if you have the chemical key. conforming citizen.
an experience from very a true early life. he threatens the whole shaky edifice.
duct a poll of the creative young musicians in this country. we've got a new idea. Your body carries a protein record of everything that's happened to you since the
computerized. "Turn on" means to
lem. This is an ancient strand of molecules that possesses
a particular French-appearing with a black mustache. But whatever they are memory or
experiences that relived actually
They provide unspeakable pleasure and revelation. George III. I've tried to
gene pools from which my ancestors emerged in Ireland and France. Louis XVI.
moment you were
organism. "Tune in" means to harness and communicate these new perwith spectives in a harmonious dance
the external world.
tion. The LSD cult has al-
and adults who wish
are starting schools for children to learn the use of
evolutionary history that
energies and wisthat are built into your nervous
their sense organs.
was receiving and
consciousness.of energy on this planet that recorded somewhere in your body.
"Sorry. and because they are frightening. is it surprising that at some later date. I freak out and open my eyes and stop it.
conceived as a one-cell
a living history of every
form of energy transformation on this planet back to that thunderbolt in the Pre-Cambrian mud that spawned the life process over two billion years ago. It's simply modern
biogenetics. in covered wagons.. art galleries. taste and touch
way they happened
before. Deal us out". back through the generations. or do you actually relive them?
ing more than luridly melodramatic Saturday serials conjured up by my forebrain. L.
society is becoming an air-conditioned anthill. refusing to
to offices. tune in. LEARY: Well. "Sorry. but there are certain untidy corners in my racial path that I often get boxed into."
al. it's time to mosey on beyond the Great Society. we don't know how these memories are stored. back. Each one will work out his individual solution. PLAYBOY: But how can you be sure they
independence from the game: "Sorry.
has called "the psyche-
sign up on the installment plan. this is not mysterious or supernatural. refusing to climb aboard the treadmill. in better ways.
sense to the
quences in an Anglo-Saxon country that have notably embarrassed me when I relived
mother. The lesson I have to something learned from over 300 LSD sessions.
PLAYBOY: Aren't these young ex-activists
dents. In many of these sessions.
then. drop out.
It seems to
contradicted by the known facts. But these are the cases that get reported in the papers. That's why it's tremendously important that the LSD session be conducted in a protected and place. beautiful and creative life.
ful. or having you
down and getting you to feel your body merging with the mattress or the
floor. representative reactions to
trapped at the level of cellular
and police officers daily scare statements to
reincarnation. for example.
are not creative get the idea that they are. don't listen to a cop. "those with unsta-
And I've sat with people who were caught on the fifth level. say. Psychedelics will help to point the way. PLAYBOY: Will you describe them? LEARY: There are any number of forms a
PLAYBOY: Speaking of patients.
psychological nature which is basibut to fear the diagnosing
of the bad
of the psychiatrist.
have studied people who by definition are emphatically uncreative namely. You can find lived most of yourself feeling that you've
figures. that the person be prepared that he have an experienced and understanding guide
to support and shield him from intrusion and interruption. PLAYBOY: Are any of
ments true? According to a recent report on narcotics addiction published by the Medical Society of the County of New
York. With his help. Is it any wonder that
experiences some fear and confusion during the high-dose LSD session.000 is going to flip out and run out into the street and do something bizarre. you may be forced into a psychotic
state. graduate students. The same is true at Bellevue and
throughout the country. And all of these people had nothing going in their lives. and whether it's good or
you that everyone else." Are these cases. and you will have collected more hard data than any of the
not swinging lovingly and gracefully with the rest of the cosmic dance. and others like them. what LSD does. I've also sat with hundreds of people who have been panicked because they
Boulevard and was hit and killed. don't listen to a Government bureaucrat.
psychiatric propaganda. then paranoid episodes are possible. or if he acts so as to protect his
interests. every look of boredom. Find the artist and ask him. particularly marijuana.
to fear neither
the "scientific" studies of
have shown no creative results? But to answer your question. is in beatific communion. Every glance. and others think they can fly. Find some friend who has taken LSD and ask him. There are 3000 Americans who die every year from barbiturates and it never hits the papers. in your opinion? say that one case in 10. which creates an atmosphere of fear rather than of courage and trust. a psychoanalyst for the National Institute of Mental Health. don't listen to messianic fanatics like Timothy Leary. and every other organism in creation. Then ask other friends about their experiences. All of these had been in a mental hospital before. however glorious it be. we've had only four cases of prolonged psychosesa matter of. nonswimmers think they can swim. we'd all be patients. But if you want to find out whether
marijuana have helped creative
people. inhuman world of shuttling vibrations. which handles LSD cases.
and where they got
or a painter or a composer. that most LSD panic subjects are given a tranquilizer
you want to know person. into a communication form still requires the technical skill of a musician
unprepared people take LSD in bad surroundings.
fugues. however. Base your opinion about LSD on a series of such interviews. they enhance the creative perbut the ability to convert your
perspective. no stable. That isn't news. with no home or family or any roots. back to a
very easy to bring you more recognizable and less
any stable relationship. B. don't listen to a psychiatrist. ask the
your life in a universe completely of your own. merely enhance the senses. If he treats you as a psychotic . two or three weeks after the session. Thousands more die in car crashes and from lung cancer induced by smoking. Dr. where they looked out and saw that their body had scales like a fish or felt that they had turned into an
animal. I must admit that LSD and marijuana do not allow you to walk to the piano and
depends upon your environment and your traveling companions. He can bring you back down
LSD. Ninety percent LSD trips are provoked by
Psychedelic drugs. but to develop gracefulfilling ways of living a more serene.
ing with basic problems that you should face and work be to encouraged through. and only you are isolated by your egocentricity. In our technological society of the future. and they were people who could not commit
quite simply by holding a candle in front of you. in that eerie." What's your reaction? LEARY: It's unfortunate that most of the
on creativity have been done by psychologists who don't have one creative bone in their body. every sound.
produce an illusion dangerous to people who are creative."
trips in the city's hospitals at one Does that sound to you like a
realistic figure? LEARY: I'd like to
know who conducted
paranoid episode can take. They allow you to see and hear new patterns of energy that suggest new patterns for composition. and when there's no one present who has the skill and courage to guide them through it.rather than as one who is seriously gropterror
Society report also stated that "normal. William Murphy. If you want to find out about creativity." Is that true? LEARY: In over 3000 people that I have personally observed taking LSD. who cease then to be motivated to produce something that is genuinely new. If the psychiatrists had their way. not really touching and harmonizing with the flow of the people and the energies around you.
may experience LSD-
PLAYBOY: Concerning LSD's influence on creativity. normal or neurotic. I was recently told by the director of a large California hospital. Time wrote: "Under the influence of LSD. If
he understands the
sciousness.in the future than the automobile industry has produced in the last 20 years. The outcome and duration of this confusion
psychosis is the fault not of the drug nor of the drug taker but of the people around him who lose their cool
cops or the doctors. either. PLAYBOY: In the same essay. They were drifting or floating.
spective. If he's frightened or uncomprehending." Is there any truth to that? LEARY: Everyone. A magazine salesman became convinced that he was the Messiah. One un-
induced psychoses. I've experienced this myself. takes the view that there is no evidence "that drugs of any kind increase creative potency. ongoing life situato
frightening level. One young man tried to stop a car on Los Angeles' Wilshire
bad. Every action around you fits perfectly into this paranoid
mosaic. every smile becomes a confirmation of the fact that everyone knows that you are the only one in the
and sent home without even being admitted. But one LSD kid rushes out and takes off his clothes in the street and it's headlines in the New York Daily
. a recent Time essay reported that a survey in Los
time. And the illusion is bad in making those
tion to return to.
if you have no internal trust and no external place to turn to afterward. PLAYBOY: The same New York Medical
and confusion are naturally increased. He's the person to believe
and then you'll be able to judge on the basis of his statements what LSD has done for him. They
well-adjusted persons can undergo an acute psychotic break under the influence of LSD. or getting you to concentrate on your breathing. you'll be able to exult in and learn from the
experience. But all these episodes can be dealt with easily by an experienced guide who recognizes where the LSD tripper is caught.
the press these days. the problem will be not to get people to work.
People go into panic states in which they are ready to jump out of
to burst. You become aware of its pulsing nerves and
muscle fibers straining for the next beat. that's no reason for grounding all airNews. "My heart's going to stop!" we say. When men set out for Plymouth in a leaky boat to pursue a
fore a Senate subcommittee investigating
wait again. Isn't that a cause for concern? LEARY: Yes but only because this one eppsychiatrists calling LSD a homicidal drug. No Government bureau or Big Brother doctor can be allowed to decide who is going to
Stopping? feel the blood throbbing in your
this time? Is it
was with her.
stopping. that they're about to have a heart attack. At Harvard. they may not have the strength to beat again. nothing to be
you talk to a psychihear nothing but gloomy
isode has led
skins. Is this a common occurrence?
Fairly common. but I am waiting for the scientific evidence.
. you took your teenage son and daughter
along. The heart!
the ventricles opening a hole in your
Have you allowed or encouraged them to use marijuana and LSD? LEARY: Yes. So one episode out of 10. of the National Institute of Mental Health. We've never given LSD to anyone for our own selfish purposes. "OK.
On LSD. But it wasn't that the LSD poi-
a nuthouse experience. She thought she was going crazy and jumped out of the window. courageous young laymen out in the universities and out in
the seminaries and in their own homes and on the beaches who are taking LSD and having fantastically beautiful
experiences. If you
talk to a mortician.
heart. who should be with you at all times.
mobilized from the possibility of change by their fears of taking a risk. actual or
This ruined our reputation with scientists. in meadows. Cole has had at hand. of course But the risks of
not Mrs. If you talk to a law-
collaborative sense to
me and the subject. you may wait what seems like five hours for the second beat. But
closing. they walked out of the session room with messianic
gleams in their eyes.
cause for every case that his Federal researchers have studied.
you may actually hear the thump of your heartbeat.
Century voyage of spiritual discovery. He hears only the horror stories.
way of life. Jonathan Cole.
of course. Cole thinks about LSD is irrelevant.
any reasonably stable individual
LEARY: In 23 years of LSD use. they're not preconsider this psychological rape. These poor patients are usually not even told what
given. is it worth the risk? LEARY: That question can be answered
only by the individual. LEARY: This sort of criticism has ruined
reputation in conventional research but it simply betrays ignorance of the way LSD works. Because of LSD's distention of the time dimension. and you wait. Let
it stop.one nut who's a member of the squad from the Los Angeles force gets drunk and climbs into police an airplane and threatens the pilot.
But Dr. but
potential. calling alcohol illegal. he's sitting there with his sticky molasses Freudian psychiatric chessboard attempting to explain experiences that are far beyond the narrow
under psychiatric supervision. both of my children
have witnessed more psychedelic sessions than any psychiatrist in the country. How can they possibly do this over and over again? If you're unprepared for it.
The unexpected LSD
such panic and confusion that she killed herself. What Dr.
planes. In more than a million LSD cases. of course. Cole doesn't listen to the hundreds of thousands of people who have taken LSD under intelligent. PLAYBOY: Didn't you marry again? LEARY: Yes to a beautiful model named
Mena. So I'm not surprised that the cases Dr.
scure. must be done in mental hospitals. PLAYBOY: You've also been criticized for
carefully planned circumstances have had their lives changed for the
screening of subjects administered LSD. I have no objection to them
the' use of
their consciousness through sacramental substances in ac-
of the Los Angeles police force. there has been one definite case of suicide during
the worst possible place to take LSD. in a nuthouse and you'll have
experience. or for selfish purposes of his
afraid that your heart
juvenile delinquency and drugs. Dr. Cole undoubtedly has never taken LSD himself. there's no evidence that that
panic. has said that psychedelic drugs "can be dangerous. he is justified in saying that.
The mother of my two children died in 1955. PIAYBOY: Dr. but the
lexicons of psychopathology. as you've said elsewhere.
soned her. If the therapist has never taken it.
they were taking
This was a
Switzerland who'd been given LSD without her knowledge.
are profoundly grateful to have been dramatically opened up by LSD. Actually.
doesn't receive the hundred that I receive from people
have been willing and eager sessions with anyone in any
hasn't led to
What do you
unfortunate boy ever took LSD.
PIAYBOY: There have also been reports of suicide under the influence of LSD. fine. You have to take or at least to have it with your patient taken it yourself -in order to empathize with and follow him as he goes from one level to another. recent case of this nature in-
your standing and reassurance from an experienced guide and companion. Cole has heard about from his research-
Based on the evidence that Dr. He has spohsored research that has been done indeed. in Mexico and here at Millbrook.
atrist. When somebody says to us in an LSD session. you'll come to the conclusion that everyone who is of any importance is dead. aesthetic. outlawing guns and dissolving the narcotics bureau
blood is flooding your body! You're drowning in your own blood! "Help! Get me a doctor!" you may shout. a number of LSD panics have been attributed to the experience of many users. Leary?
the voyage were less than the risks of rein a spiritual plague area.
your subjects and not in the laboratory but on beaches. this can become a terror that it cannot continue. you and your associates have turned on with
out and went to Bellevue. PLAYBOY: At most of the psychedelic sessions you've conducted in the course of
research. and you are aware of the millions of cells that must be tiring out. If this kind of episode occurs.
necessary to allay a few words of under-
cord with their spiritual growth and well-being. there are 5000 serious-minded.
limits of that particular system. in the midst of a session. In the opinion of most authorities.
of our subjects flipped
that the heart
better. PLAYBOY: Even if only one percent of your subjects had bad experiences. There have been other rumors about LSD panics leading to suicide. living rooms and even Buddhist temples. you'll find that pracis
we turned him
a criminal. He was obviously attempting a cop-out when he talked to the police about it afterward. there haven't been more than one or two documented cases of homicide or suicide attributable to the
ers are negative.
also made possible a fantastically successful record: 99 percent of the people who took LSD with us had fabulous ex-
periences.000 LSD cases is no reason for any kind of hand wringing
PIAYBOY: A volved a young man who contended that he killed his mother-in-law while he was on LSD. this highly unconventional therapeutic technique is not only impractical but irrational and
do you justify it? irresponsible." There is no physchange in your heart.
have led to
the fact that the use of
more and more people
in them. which
use of powerful
crazed. PLAYBOY: In what way are they hysterical? LEARY: They're hysterical because the men who are passing them have allowed
their ignorance of
to escalate into
mild should be similar to those for the automobile license.
you recommend? and control manufacture until you've worked out a
an enormous amount of periph-
15 percent of col-
eral harassment. This issue has generated so much hysteria that the normal processes of democratic debate are consistently violated. They think of drug taking as a criminal activity practiced by stuporous escapists and
tests and getting a doctor's certificate of psychological
up in a rather public way the severity and harshness of the current statutes.
to laws penaliz-
of LSD. Dad. in ten years the LSD group will constitute one of our largest minorities. they
manuals. serious-minded people
could purchase these chemicals.
Amendment. On Saturday. It is incredibly powerful and can be a frightening experience. At one-thirty a. nonaddictive. upper-middle-class. it was suppressed.PLAYBOY: Yet restrictive and prohibitive laws against the use of LSD have already
I think some LSD equivalent of the Atomic Energy Commission and some
in California. I couldn't get bail bond after my indictment in La-
lege students are currently using LSD. plus very stringent
testing for fitness and competence. or even hints. but the Narcotics people don't want any sort
As they learn more about LSD. Of course. all but three guests had retired. It will suggest that future arrests for marijuana must be judged on the merits of the individual case rather than a blanket. The daily diatribes of police officials and many legislators to
psychedelic drugs should be along the lines of
the airplane pilot's license: intensive study and preparation. when alcohol was prohibited.
of objective. There are many individuals who should be provided with a legitimate access to chemicals that expand their minds. he is immediately labeled as a dangerous fanatic and
journalists on professional assignments and three photographers. April 16th. "Wow.
Jersey. I think I hope they will recognize that there will have to be special legislation.
own homes and
neurotic tendenshould be allowed to have a crack
PLAYBOY: The implications of your arrest and conviction in Laredo were still
being debated when the police raided your establishment here in Millbrook. there were present at our center in Millbrook 29 adults and 12 children.
engaging being manufactured by
own hang-ups and
it. He's not an character or a junkie. five
evaluation of marijuana. For example. I was in bed. During Prohibition. If we don't do this. tasteless.000 fine simply pointed
being passed. college-educat-
ed phenomenon. odorless. Instinctively. My 30-year sentence and $30. A healthy and profitable situation would result for all involved.
people in their
laboratories. so will there need to be something comparable for LSD. senile legislation pre-
venting people from pursuing private.
such statutes. Then what are
the lawmakers going to do?
PLAYBOY: Have you had the opportunity to present this plan to the Federal Nar-
We've read several different versions of just what took place that night.
and physical soundness. The Government received no taxes and the consumer had no guarantee that what he was buying was safe and effective. It is a new form of energy.
continues. writing our
Nevada and members of
special licensing procedures should be set up to deal with this new class of drugs. But if marijuana and LSD were put under some form of licensing where responsible. There should be laws about the manufacture of LSD. This certain-
legislation had to be developed for radioactive isotopes. then
redo. slammed it and said. Do the hard-arteried politicians and po-
want to put our brightcreative youngsters in prison for possession of a colorless. D. which forbids cruel and unusual punishments.
laws are beactivities. He to hide. Will you
give us a step-by-step account? LEARY: Gladly. We are currently planning to appeal any conviction
way of licensing or authorizing possession.. which
guarantees the right of spiritual exploration.
Congress have urged Federal legislation outlawing its manufacture or possession. mind-opening sublice types really
stance? Irrational. passing written
same bag with heroin. in your
Bureau? LEARY: I would be most happy to. PLAYBOY: What criteria would you use for
guarantees immunity from self-incrimination. which are clearly in violation of several amendments to the Constitution. We heard a noise outside in the hallway. the
be shaping public opinion. PLAYBOY: There are some who see the appeal of your conviction in Laredo as a
think that's possible?
I win my case in the higher and my lawyers believe I will
step leading to legalization of marijuana. playboy is among the rare institutions that will tackle an issue of this sort. which guarantees
certain personal liberties not specifically enumerated in the other amendments. I consider the mari-
pealing the hysterical laws that are
responsibility and seriousin applying for a license?
juana laws to be unjust laws. deranged minds.m. there's about fifty cops out there!" I jumped out of bed and was in the middle of the room when the
. PLAYBOY: Which amendments? LEARY: The First Amendment. let
has been demonstrated by reactions of people asked to contribute to my legal defense fund.
trary implementation of irrational and excessive regulation. one three physicists.
involved in such a case.
able to us
say. The fact that I'm being imprisoned for not paying a tax on a substance that. intimate experiences sexual or spiritual cannot and will not be obeyed. It is not a narcotic and not a medical drug. equal-play consideration of these issues. PLAYBOY: How would a person demon-
this will have wide implications. because they believe public identity may lead to investigatory persecution. and I had to put up cash. There are hundreds who have contributed but who realisly
cannot afford to have their names
were in the room talking to me about a term paper that my son was writing. Just as a new form of
be investigated. we'll have a free market or a black market. In 15 years.
LSD be made availyoung people. My son opened the door. and of
ly self-incrimination. But while more and more
his activities. The licensing
and the Fifth Amendment. son and a friend of his
doesn't cure any illness.
determining fitness and competence? LEARY: No one has the right to tell anyone else what he should or should not do with this great and last frontier of freedom. The applicant would demonstrate his seriousness by studying
criteria for licensing the use psychedelics like marijuana
they do. When anyone suggests the
heretical notion that
them were three Ph.
taxed. I think that anyone who wants to have a psychedelic experience and is
willing to prepare for
current marijuana statutes are also in violation of the Eighth Amendment. this ambiguous is temporary.
criminal type. or to apologize for. D. LEARY: Such laws are unrealistic and unconstitutional.
grounds. because it ing possession recognizes the impossibility of enforcement and the unconstitutionality of
you had bathtub gin and bootleg poisons of all sorts. When several million
Americans can't have their and can't get objective and
scientific consideration of their position. then the manufacture could be supervised and the sales could be both regulated
think that the Constitution is in danger.
I intend to spend the rest of my with psychedelic help. I think that the people who are trying to put other
behavior have not
of your freedom by carrying a half ounce of marijuana into Mexico?
LEARY: Well. usually from an informer. for
example. this question comes up over and over again. almost every one of them has been either imprisoned or threatened with imprisonment for their spiritual beliefs: Gandhi. First of all. it was carelessness on the part of the Government
ber of the opposite sex and keep it going or not to.
He was suggesting that if you had been more careful. Hindu. I'm not. So at any time the Government wanted to make an issue of this. It's been well for several years that I'm using psychedelic drugs in my own home and
upstream against the twobillion-year tide of cellular evolution. in
ent were stripped and searched. that's like saying: Wouldn't it be careless for a Christian to carry the
on a professional assignment. I'm the freest man in America today. when you come
Do you dread
the prospect of
LEARY: Well. were extremely nervous. Of the great men of the past whom I hold up as models. including the
we could not have a lawyer present. and to a good degree reck-
internal. Buddhism. about
states that the
swear out a warrant to go into anyone's house on general suspicion and speculation. surveillance
people in jail and to control basic evolutionary energies like sex and psychedelic chemicals are in trouble. illegal substance is present at a certain place and
time. As to where and how they
will live. says essentially that.
were playing around the yard on a certain day when it was under surveillance. PLAYBOY: What is the current status of
the charges against you?
your children and to your work? LEARY: My children will continue to grow
externally and internally and they all of my friends and colleagues will
continue to communicate what they've learned to a world that certainly needs such lessons.
wrote the cosmic script? What does the code expect of me? Is the big genetic-code show live or on tape? Who
PLAYBOY: Have you
the sponsor? Are
we completely trapped
I'm $40. I one shred of guilt about anything I've done in the last six years. however. PLAYBOY: Dr.
provoking a case that has already changed public attitudes and will inevitably change the law on the possession
get here get out?
and into this mess? How do we There are two ways out of the philosophic isolation of man: You
There was no such probable cause
was defective and illegal.
Secondly. But I can't live
important lesson you've learned from your personal use of LSD? LEARY: First and last. If you're free in mind and heart.000 and I have made no provisions for eating lunch tomorrow. I've struggled with it in
and use of marijuana by thoughtful
for the raid at
"causes" cited was that cars with out-ofstate licenses were parked in my driveway. After the initial
group of bright young
the alchemists of the mind. Jesus. PLAYBOY: What would you say is the most
possession or control. The
of the raiding party. but I've never once violated my own ethical or moral values. I've made hundreds of mistakes. I have absolutely no fear of imprisonment. searching for the answers to these questions and en-
. PLAYBOY: How would that be a cause? LEARY: How. not Buddhist. on the other hand. I would say that if there was carelessness in Laredo. Humphrey Osmond of the
Jersey Neuropsychiatric Institute
headquarters of some sexual smersh.
in the evolutionary cosmic to make it with a mem-
tary precautions. humor and tolerance to five hours of captivity. PLAYBOY: What did the police find during
LEARY: After a five-hour search.
are now involved in nine of litigation on this raid. I'm. but we claim
and my own family. and that girls under the age of 16
adults in this country.sheriffs
door burst open and two uniformed and two assistant district attorneys marched in and told me not to move. or can we make real contact with anyone else out
that. It's obvious that they had in mind some James Bond fantasy of invading the Ori-
however. The Narcotics Bureau is in trouble. which is immortality of a sort.
can ball your way out by having children. the understanding
that basic to the life impulse
tion. crucial issues:
PLAYBOY: But suppose
you do go
to prison. I've learned to confine my attention
to the philosophic questions that hit the really shrieking.
Do you mean
that your lawyers
should comment on
shock of finding armed and uniformed men in our bedrooms. a search warrant can be issued only on the basis of tangible
evidence. none of these espionage reports seem to me or to my lawyers to justify the issuance of a no-knock.
center for the use of myself
PLAYBOY: Did they have a warrant? LEARY: They had a warrant. PLAYBOY: Did anyone object?
plead guilty to the charges of
being an Irishman and a revolutionary. Or you can step off the wheel. we have a
ered most of the occupants in the house which sounds in a state of semi-undress realize that almost until lurid you pretty everyone in the house was in bed asleep at the time of the raid. Beyond this affirmation of my own life. I've taken LSD over 40 times
in a maximum-security prison as part of a convict rehabilitation project we did in Boston. There was had any marijuana in my
and police traps. so I know that the only real
the sense that you've tuned in to the world. PLAYBOY: In what way?
in secrecy or panic paranoia.
ment is the number-one occupational hazard of my profession. the scholars The threat of imprison-
on civil libertarian lawyers walking around with smiles on their faces. nighttime warrant that authorized the breaking of windows and doors to obtain entry to a private house. all of my guests reacted with patience.
for their financial support? LEARY: At the present time
inside our nervous systems. I was wearing only pajama tops. Lao-tse. The American Civil Liberties Union has entered the case with a supporting brief.
when we come
it. you might not have been arrested in Laredo or Millbrook.
phone being bugged or my actions being under surveillance both of which the police admit. that you don't need to use anything to be turned on. But I don't think I'm careless about anything that's important. is to keep the life game going.
the most powerful psychology that man has ever developed. I've never bothered to take a lot of elemenlife
"Should we go on with life?" This the only real issue."
Well. and they were extremely jumpy as they went about their search of the
entire house. My choice. Socrates.
less. it certainly could. that a specific amount of defined. and Hindu holy man and his wife all
Bible to Russia? I just can't be bothered with paranoias about wire tapping. because they're
their possession no claim that I
had marijuana in and myself.
interesting aspect of the raid was that all of the women pres-
coined the word "psychehas described you as "Irish and revolutionary. Specifically. they arrested four people: a photographer here
has no fear of imprisonment. PLAYBOY: Wasn't it careless to risk the
was being done. the charge involved being the director of the house.
you're not in trouble.
I belong to one of the oldunions in human civilization
of the sheriff's statements to the was that the raiding party discov-
comment on the techlitigation. At the deepest level of consciousness. indeed? Another alleged "cause" for the raid was that I am "a known and admitted trafficker in drugs. But we'll cross that bridge
in debt for legal expenses.
. maybe 30 or 40 square miles. Inc. symbolis required.
people will be taking
producing and commu-
predict. to discover the terror and adventure and ecstasy that lie within us all.
not science-fiction fantasy. PLAYBOY: How will this psychedelic
starring role. at psychedelic cocktail parties? LEARY: It's happening already. career.
that the nervous sys-
surrounding that will feed and
human. These chemicals will inevitably revolutionize
that there will also be large reservations. tribal ways. you'll attune the desired level of consciousness to the par-
wilderness. to the enhancement of sensual
LSD may LSD
lege. he will be less
trivial. and one day a week to completely moving outside the sensory and symbolic
conference in San Francismonths ago. being will
PLAYBOY: Will the psychedelic experience become universal? Will everyone be turned on?
LEARY: Well. he will be using his span of 80 or
planet to live out every
education in the future.
and time are diverted
to these ex-
his life to
percentage of the population changes consciousness regularly and harmoniously with psychedelic drugs will bring about a very different way of life. In sophisticated way.
chemicals that will
psychedelic session. each human
goodbye. Sensible use of the nervous system would suggest that a quarter of our time will be spent in sym-
plorations. As more
itself. have a lunch-hour
be possible to
marijuana once a day.
Marijuana 1A and IB.
trips. in a limited way.
static. PIAYBOY: What role do you think psychedelics will play in the everyday life of
deer in the forest. you will
be taught to understand that the entire history of evolution is recorded inside his
body. In years to come. You don't
open up new
want your airplane pilot flying higher than the plane and having Buddhist revelations in the cockpit.
most of the
until the re-
everyone turned on with LSD. what are we going to do with ourselves build even bigger machines? The obvious and only answer to this peis that man is going to explore the infinity of inner space. Within one generation. When all of the heavy work and mental drudgery are taken over by machines. his own Galileo.
hung up on
external pastimes. not all the time. Instead
of relying on canned. And this may be the natural solution to the problem of
leisure. not "What book are you reading?" but "Which molecules are
always be some functions that require a narrow form of consciousness. But the fully conscious life schedule will also allow considerable time perhaps an hour or two a day devoted to the yoga of the senses.couraging others to do the same.
and enhance memory in years to come. PLAYBOY: Will there be a day. is
possibility of the
of course. where people will go to have LSD sessions in
enable each person to is not a game-playing robot put on this planet to be given a Social Security number and to be spun
school. and learning and
nourish you. as some
gle level of consciousness. insurance. that can be done now with DMT. funeral.
education. which has a very fast action. It may be
exhilarate learning. 1966 by Publishing Co. through the use of these chemical keys to the nervous system as regular tools of learning. Each per-
son will become his
Congress inside your nervous system?" I don't know if there'll ever be courses in
as a prerequisite to LSD 101. prehuman and
even subhuman adventure. when they come home from school. And during a
through marijuana and hashish. but there's no doubt that chemicals will be the central method of
this. dead knowledge passed on from other symbol producers.
large dance recently where two thirds of the guests were on LSD. lasting perhaps a half hour.
child rearing and social behavior. It was very serene: They were like a herd of
cent unpleasantness taking LSD once a
week and smoking
'Reprinted from the September 1966 issue of PLAYBOY magazine. In this country. you won't want to take LSD where narrow. I went along with 400 people on a picnic at which almost
scholarly co a few
dimensions into the transcendental realms that are open to you through LSD. there are already functions at
nicating in conventional. Just as you don't play golf on Times Square. the challenge of the complete human life will be for each person to recapitulate and experientially explore every aspect and vicissitude of this ancient
be asking your children." Copyright