Psychedelic singularities (was Test Scores (was Causality))

Ray Peck (rpeck@PureAtria.COM)
Fri, 20 Dec 1996 00:55:09 -0800 (PST)

Lyle Burkhead writes:
>Ray Peck writes,
>> I had the same experience, at about the same age (21-22), but without
>> the drugs. I'm 30 now, and am not nearly "as smart" as I was when I
>> was 20. The main effect has been concentration: I used to be able to
>> concentrate for hours at a shot. Now, while I'm not a poster-fella
>> for ADD, I sure can't. I can't even concentrate for 5 minutes any
>> more.
>Strange. Is this always true, no matter what you are doing? Maybe
>you are trying to concentrate on things that don't really interest you.

Hm. Not really, although I often need to concentrate on things that
frustrate the hell out of me! No, I really think it's a true
phenomenon. I also find it when listening to music. I'm a huge music
fan (see my fledgling web pages at
I used to be able to listen for hours straight with complete
comcentration. Now my mind is cluttered with a million things, many
of which are not really that important but that concern/irritate me.

>Maybe you should use drugs! Abstinence affects different people in
>different ways. <g>

I never have, except alcohol. I've always felt that I was a such a
compulsive person that it was really dangerous for me to try.

>I certainly agree about the e-mail, but it's a hard habit to break.

Yeah. 331 messages left to read tonight. . .

>When I was 35 I started playing a video game. I became obsessed with
>it. I would play for hours at a time. This could be considered a form of
>meditation. The game required very fast eye-hand coordination (with
>both hands), and it required intense visual concentration -- not on an
>unchanging pattern, as in some forms of meditation, but on a moving
>pattern, which was just what I needed. The breakthrough came about
>six months after I started playing the game. Something snapped
>one afternoon, and that was when I started getting my strength back.

Has anyone here read those books by Micael Somthing, author of "Flow"?
From the description of his books, he seems to be onto something.

>If you find something -- anything -- that utterly fascinates you,
>something you can do for hours and never think about the time, that
>would probably be a cure, or at least the first step towards a cure.

That's an excellent thought, thanks.