All quotes from Timothy Leary’s

For the first time in human history there seems to be no land of exile or immigration where groups of people sharing unpopular spiritual beliefs and practices can remove to live in peace. Our own country, you remember, was founded by exactly such small groups of religious exiles.

Why is it that every generation—before it gets this lesson of the past—why is it that each generation harasses and persecutes its gentlest, wisest, and holiest men; exactly those men that succeeding generations will revere? The answer to this question has nothing to do with intelligence or social prejudice or conservatism. The answer is neurological. The nervous system of the adult human being is so set up that it registers intense neurological pain when confronted with an idea or a method which liberates man from his addiction to symbols, from his addiction to the current tribal symbol system.

I realized that it was within my power to select and play almost any game, or even to deal myself out of games entirely. I decided at that time that the game I wanted to play was to become the holiest and wisest man of my generation—specifically, to expand and elevate the consciousness of the entire human race. Now, this may sound like a surprising ambition, but I don’t see why. If you can select any game, why not pick the most exciting and challenging game around? With full knowledge, of course—the knowledge that comes from a contemplative series of LSD sessions—that all human games end in a tie, and that the chances of succeeding in any human game are always statistically dubious.

It always takes one generation for a new idea to become accepted.

The religion of the future will be based—as were the religions of the past—upon the human body and the myriad wonders within this temple. Any external event which distracts you from learning how to understand and use the machinery of consciousness within your body is irreverent and irrelevant.

The average American is heavily addicted to the symbolic level of consciousness, hooked to external tribal patterns which he calls normal reality. The average American uses drugs to put his consciousness in a state of symbolic game-playing. The first thing he does in the morning is take coffee or caffeine. The American who is involved in hectic, demanding game-playing sequences takes an energizer. At five o’clock, with symbols and symbolic sequences whizzing around in his head, the average American rushes home and puts himself in a mild state of stupor with alcohol.

Every baby that is born is a mutant. Every baby is the genetic code’s newest and most creative answer to the problem of adapting to the other forms of life and energy on this planet.

You see your mother as a symbolic creature, but she’s actually a bundle of millions and millions of sense organs; of sensory cells. However symbol-addicted mother may be, she’s basically a living organism with billions of neural cameras tuned to external energy.