Valis, Zebra, Gaia


According to the effects of a peculiarly strong eschatological current of Gaian sized proportions, I was recently conveyed to Mexican Maya country. I was there in the role of scriptwriter for Earth 2.0, a paradigm shifting movie documentary due for theatrical release some time in 2012. At one point the core Earth 2.0 team visited a splendid Mayan archaeological site known as Ek Balam where the vibe was remarkably serene. Whilst we were there, we took the opportunity to film legendary author Graham Hancock in front of some Mayan architectural remains (he was in the vicinity as part of a 2012 conference). After being informed of the essential function of the Earth 2.0 movie, Graham said some really fantastic things to camera -- particularly with regard to the spiritual and cultural importance of ayahuasca and how heads of state ought to be required to take such strong medicine before assuming office. Such a bold idea was just the sort of thing that Earth 2.0 will be promoting.

Knowing only too well the eco-shamanic value of psychedelic plants and fungi, my consciousness felt suddenly elevated as I watched Graham deliver his uncontrived heartfelt words. The scene really lit up. A beautiful rainforest bird began to sing. A lovely yellow butterfly flew past him. And then, strangest of all, a large moth landed on a tree near me. It had perfect camouflage and was extremely difficult to see against the background bark. But it would periodically open up its wings slightly such that it became visible. This camouflaged moth really amazed me because, just the day before, we had been filming Guide to 2012 author Mark Heley at Coba (another Mayan site). While we were filming him, this large and extraordinary lizard appeared high up on a pyramid directly behind him. Its colour matched the stone so perfectly that when it stopped moving it was totally invisible. I was transfixed. It was like a mythological psychedelic hallucination, as if a primeval dragon made of stone was appearing and disappearing. At one point it moved its head purposefully up and down -- in the manner of stylised nods. Then, after it stopped moving, it blended in perfectly with the stone steps and became, like the moth, totally invisible.

So, the appearance of the camouflaged giant lizard along with the camouflaged moth got me thinking about certain hidden aspects, or hidden dimensions, of Nature. To be sure, Graham Hancock said a few things along these lines -- pertaining to those otherwise occluded spiritual dimensions accessible through the judicious use of psychedelic plants. In other words then, the natural synchronistic appearance (and disappearance!) of the moth and the lizard made me feel privy to a lesson pertaining to Nature’s secret hidden face, a face that can, of course, choose to reveal itself.

This reminds of something Philip K. Dick once alluded to in his book VALIS. He wrote about the Zebra principle. The idea is that the sophisticated mimicry we find, say, in the insect world (where an insect might look exactly like a leaf), might also exist on a higher level or on a higher scale. Which is to say that some kind of higher intelligence may be present in the world but be hidden to us through a cunning sort of mimicry. In VALIS, Dick writes:

“What if a high form of sentient mimicry existed -- such a high form that no human (or few humans) had detected it? What if it could only be detected if it wanted to be detected? Which is to say, not truly detected at all, since under these circumstances it had advanced out of its camouflaged state to disclose itself.  "Disclose" might in this case equal "theophany." The astonished human being would say, I saw God; whereas in fact he saw only a highly evolved ultra-terrestrial life form, a UTL, or an extra-terrestrial life form (an ETL) which had come here at some time in the past, and perhaps, as Fat conjectured, had slumbered for nearly two thousand years in dormant seed form as living information in the codices at Nag Hammadi, which explained why reports of its existence had broken off abruptly around 70 A.D.”

Well, I don’t really want to plunge into PKD’s immense body of lively Gnostic speculation -- suffice it to say that I find the idea of a hidden dimension of higher intelligence appealing, especially if such an intelligence is bound up with Nature/Gaia and is not part of some ET scenario. This, in fact, is the gist of my work which revolves around the concept of natural intelligence. The idea is that Nature is a system of self-organising intelligence which finds overt expression through the evolution of organismic bio-logic. I have long suspected that not only is Nature smart but that Nature is ultra-smart, that Nature has dimensions of purpose and intelligence undreamed of in conventional philosophies. I would even suggest that the root cause of synchronicity lies with the naturally intelligent coherency that binds together the whole of Nature. Everything really is connected. Well, not just connected but moving and flowing in a deliberately constructive way whereby more and more meaning and insight unfolds.

For me, the realisation that Nature is an unfolding coherent flow of intelligence really hits home under the auspicious influence of psilocybin -- but this can also be divined whenever we look upon the world with open minds and open hearts, when we see the world without the usual mechanical associations, when we see the world, as Aldous Huxley said, without utilitarian eyes. I mean, Nature really is fantastic and replete with a staggering engineering prowess. Think of your body -- 100 trillion cells bound together into one single coherency -- and then think of your cortex able to embody consciousness and be boggled by such a fact! Nature is genius! Evolution is brilliant! Bio-logic is incredible!

More to the point, it seems likely that there must be some function, or agenda, to natural intelligence, that the various forces of Nature are verily forcing something profound to eventually happen. And maybe, for some reason pertaining to a gradual process of awakening perhaps, Nature’s essential agenda is hidden -- or at least that it is something that we have hitherto been blind to. After all, natural intelligence is not taught in schools. Everyone has heard of AI but no-one is talking about NI. Human intelligence is always raved about, whereas Nature’s nifty information gaining processes (like biological evolution) are unsung. Nobel prizes are awarded to scientists who uncover Nature’s engineering acumen, whereas Nature is awarded no prizes. We big up our technology whereas the technology of life itself (DNA, protein  nanotech, etc) is just taken for granted. And if we do see something of significance to life and consciousness, then a supernatural God is often invoked.

I thus believe that the timely appearance of the hidden tree moth and the hidden pyramid lizard were part of a synchronistic and tutorial flow of information. That they appeared during Earth 2.0 filming sessions where spiritual awakening was being discussed seems significant -- and this applies whether the synchronicity was part of Gaia, part of Valis, part of Zebra or simply a projection of my subconscious mind.

In The Psilocybin Solution (hopefully to be published soon) I write that reality is made of language-like self-organising information. If so, then messages, themes and plots can both fold and unfold within the environment. Indeed, if Gaia is akin to a self-writing self-righting story, then events can fall into place that have various layers of semantic content such that you can literally read into, and be informed by, the natural world. Event patterns can be textual; sub-texts and lessons can be perceived and learned. But hey, I am not one to gossip…

To be continued… 

Photo courtesy of the author. Pictured from left to right are Earth 2.0 cameraman Mark Drifting Waters, Graham Hancock, Simon G. Powell.

See the Earth 2.0 movie blog hereNatural Intelligence DVD here.