Jerry Speaks: Pranksters, Philosophers, Portals
Rebecca: So I take it you don’t believe in reincarnation, in the recycling of consciousness?
Jerry: It may happen in a very large way. It may be that part of all the DNA-coding, the specific memory, returns. There’s definitely information in my mind that did not come from this lifetime. Not only is there some, but there’s tons of it! Enormous, vast reservoirs.
Dreams are kind of a clue. What are these organizing principles that make it so you experience these realities that are as emotionally as real as this life is? You can feel grief or be frightened in a dream just as badly as you can in this life. And the psychedelic experience is similar in that it has the power to convince you of its authenticity. It’s hard to ignore that once you have experienced it.
Rebecca: What does the term consciousness mean to you?
Jerry: I go along with the notion that the universe wants consciousness in it, that it’s part of the evolutionary motion of the universe and that we represent the universe’s consciousness. Why it wants it, I don’t know, but it seems to want it.
Here’s the reason I believe this. If the point of an organism is survival, why go any further than sharks or simple-minded predators that survive perfectly beautifully? Why continue throwing out possibilities? So my sense is that conceivably, there is some purpose or design. Why monkeys with big heads? Because that’s the most convenient consciousness-carrier, perhaps.
Rebecca: Do you think that humans are evolving en masse to be more conscious?
Jerry: I do think there’s a drive towards more consciousness. There are huge setbacks all the way along, but all the aberrations that we see, holy wars etcetera, are metaphors for more consciousness. They are expressed as conflict because we haven’t come up with enough good models to express it in other ways. We are it. We’re the same stuff as stars and galaxies, so we’re indivisibly part of it. We’re the part that speaks, that plays music, that creates abstractions.
The atomic bomb is a good metaphor for consciousness. If you are able to describe a possible way that things work in this universe with enough rigor inside some kind of belief system, you’re going to be the creator of fundamental change expressed as a huge eruption of energy.
You have to have the idea first about energy and mass. Once that idea is expressed perfectly enough, then it’s possible to create something that will do it physically. So the atomic bomb is a physical model of the mind gaining control of the material world. The question is are we able to do it without blowing ourselves to smithereens?
David: Are you talking about being able to organize reality the way we want, say with nano-technology?
Jerry: Yes, that would be a good example. If the universe’s mind—meaning us—is able to say what it wants about itself, to describe itself well enough, it can make decisions about where it’s going and what it’s doing—consciously. That’s like bringing the big mind and the little mind together.
David: Have you had any experiences where you felt you were in contact with extra-terrestrials or multi-dimensionals—beings not of this world?
Jerry: I can’t say not of this world. I believe that anything that I was ever in touch with was fundamentally a part of this world. I would even go further to say that the concept of extra-terrestrial is not applicable in this universe. Everything in this universe is part of this universe.
David: Have you ever felt like you’ve been in communication with beings of a higher intelligence than humans?
Jerry: I’ve had direct communication with something which is higher than me. I don’t know what it is, it may be another part of my mind. There’s no way for me to filter it out because it’s in my head. It’s the thing that’s able to take bits and pieces of things and give me large messages. To me, they are messages as clear as someone speaking in my ear, they’re that well-expressed and they have all the detail that goes along with it.
Sometimes it comes in the form of an actual voice and sometimes it comes in the form of a hugeness, a huge presence that uses all of the available sensory material to express an idea. And when I get the idea it’s like, dah! Oh, I get it! And it’s accompanied by that hollow mocking laughter. You stupid fuck! You finally got it, uh. Geez, it’s about time. (Laughter) For me, enlightenment works that way, but it’s definitely a higher order of self-organization that communicates stuff.
My psychedelic experiences were sequential. They started at a place and they went through a series of progressive learning steps. When they stopped happening it was like, this is the end of the message—now you’re just playing around. That was when psychedelics stopped having the relevance they originally had. It lasted for about a year, I’d say.
David: What do you think a Grateful Dead show in Virtual Reality would be like?
Jerry: Deadheads would want to be part of the band, I would imagine. I think it would be fun if they could be, because it would make them see the experience differently. But I think they would be disappointed if they saw our version of it.
Rebecca: Why do you think that?
Jerry: I don’t know why. Remember, I don’t know what the Grateful Dead are like, I’ve never seen the Grateful Dead, so I don’t know what it is that the people in the audience experience which they value so highly.
In honor of Umphrey’s McGee’s return to Summer Camp this weekend, we present the group’s Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger performing this version of “The Pequod” from UM’s Anchor Drops.
Dame shares a song from her new EP Preventions of Heartbreak.
Golden Bloom stopped by Relix to perform a tune from their latest EP No Day Like Today.
The Chapin Sisters share an tune from their new album A Date With the Everly Brothers.
Minneapolis-based Night Moves share a song from their record, Colored Emotions, live at Relix.
Cloud Cult share a song from their latest album live at Relix.
The Giving Tree Band enjoy a spring day on the Relix rooftop, while performing a classic Grateful Dead tune.
Canadian singer-songwriter Hayden performs a duet with his sister-in-law Lou Canon. The song appears on Us Alone his first record on Broken Social Scene’s Arts & Crafts Productions.
The Milk Carton Kids share the first song from their new album, The Ash & Clay.
Here is the new video from Serbian guitar ace Ana Popovic. “Object Of Obsession” appears on her latest album Can You Stand The Heat.
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