Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy
Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index
The Tantric Mysticism of Tibet .
Blofeld, John. (1987).
Dragon Editions, 257 pages.
Contents: Foreword, illustrations,
9 chapters divided into 2 parts: 1. Background and Theory, 2.
Practice, glossary, list of useful books containing material on
Note: Originally published
in 1970 by Dutton: New York.
Excerpt(s): This aspect
of Tantric Buddhism has led to the great error of confounding
it with libertinism. Though all things are employed as
a means, they must be rightly used and their right use is far
removed from sensual gratification. The possible use of drugs
such as mescaline which produce psychedelic effects provides a
good example. Suppose a medieval traveller has been about to undertake
an arduous journey through burning deserts and icy mountains in
search of some fabled city, and someone had shown him an authentic
picture of the place; his will to endure the terrible hardships
involved would have been enormously strengthened. At least he
would have been freed from gnawing doubts as to whether the city
really existed. Similarly, mescaline does in many cases imbue
the users with an absolute conviction of the existence of a spiritual
goal of the kind postulated by mystics. Therefore, using it once
or twice, with proper preparation and under suitable conditions,
might benefit newcomers to the path; on the other hand, its continued
use would be disastrous-bliss so easily attainable would be likely
to reconcile them to life as it is and induce them to be content
with drug-induced experiences instead of actually treading the
path. Fingering the picture of a city is no substitute for going
to live there. If the path were abandoned, the effort to negate
the ego would be abandoned with it and unutterable loss sustained.
[footnote] During my one experience with such a
drug, I was plunged into a state of ecstasy in which dawned full
awareness of three truths I had long accepted intellectually
but never experienced as being self-evident; now, all of a sudden,
they became as tangible as the heat of a raging fire. There was
awareness of undifferentiated unity embracing perfect identification
of subject and object; logic was transcended and
I beheld a whirling mass of brilliant colours and forms which,
being several, differed from one another and yet were altogether
the same at the moment of being different! The concept `I'
had ceased to be; I was at once the audience, the actors and the
play! Secondly, I recognized the unutterable bliss I was experiencing
as the only real state of being, all others amounting to
no more than passing dreams. Thirdly came awareness of all that
is implied by the Buddhist doctrine of `dharmas,' namely the doctrine
that all objects of perception are alike devoid of own-being,
mere transitory combinations of an infinite number of impulses.
I experienced the rising of each impulse and the thrill of culmination
with which it ceased to be, waves mounting and dissolving in a
sea of bliss. That experience, which, since it was almost too
intense for flesh and blood to bear, I have no desire to repeat,
gave me an incomparable insight into the true meaning of what
I had learned from my Lamas. Undoubtedly I benefitted as the traveller
in my analogy would have benefitted from the picture of the city,
but I am no nearer Liberation than before; therein lies the limitation
of the drug-induced experience. (pages 33-34)
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This compilation by Thomas B. Roberts & Paula Jo Hruby, © 1995-2003 CSP