DID LSD CREATE SILICON VALLEY?
Developers, governments, academics and dreamers have continuously
searched for ways to bring economic boom to their areas of interest.
Developers option the cheapest land available with the most suitable
advantages. Governments throw large sums of money into projects to
create jobs and gain votes. Academics present case histories showing how
something worked someplace else, at another time, with all the
variables, even in relatively stable times. Dreamers look for the
economic equivalent of Tom Sawyer to come with an idea, say to build a
flying machine that will revolutionize the world. The idea of moving a
mind into an altered state to perceive things as they might be tomorrow
is relatively novel.
California's amazingly successful Silicon Valley maybe the result of
large numbers of young people in the San Francisco area ingesting LSD or
other psychedelic chemicals during the 1960s. Many of these minds
subsequently conceived concepts beyond traditional thinking patterns and
several have woven their innovative ideas into successful modern
businesses. Many who have entered those "altered states" say that a maze
of city streets from their high and distant "altered" viewpoints
resembled modern computer boards. Could this explain why the
transistorized computer board developed shortly thereafter? At the time
there were no views from space! Or even from the Concorde, which at
60,000 feet altitude, where the curvature of Planet Earth becomes
noticeable and the earth and city streets take on new meaning. When one
experiences the blackness of space, even as seen from the Concorde and
feels the heat on the aircraft windows, which become too hot to touch at
Mach Two... Again, a state of mind and flying is altered from the norm.
I am not suggesting that young people today try such experimentation.
However, after working as part of a medical research team for seven
years during the 1960s at Hollywood Hospital in New Westminster (now a
shopping mall) and spending more than 9,000 hours with subjects and
patients undergoing what was then, legal therapy, I have to "tell it
like it is (was)".
During the past 25 years, I have often discussed such ideas with
people who sampled altered mental states. Generally, they have done
better than average during the two decades plus since thier experience.
Some economically, others by seeing themselves more positively and
perhaps understanding more thoroughly why they are here. Many say they
have become more creative.
Several are involved in the exploding world of Virtual Reality and see
this phenomenon as a form of "electronic LSD" that may, like an ordinary
computer does sometimes, provide insights never previously contemplated
Unlike most North Americans who believe creativity is inborn, the
Japanese who admit they have not generally been an extremely creative
people, think otherwise. In Japan many people believe creativity can be
acquired, perhaps through such vehicles as Virtual Reality. If they are
right, watch out. When the Japanese direct all their intellect and
energy into finding a solution, the bizarre bothers them not a bit.
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