A Collection of Strange Beliefs, Amusing Deceptions, and Dangerous Delusions

From Abracadabra to Zombies

reader comments: Carlos Castaneda

24 Jan 2004
Upon entering your website for the first time while searching for information on Carlos Castaneda, I noticed an immediate condescending tone that is typical of intolerant religious or political commentary. I believe the most ridiculous belief is Christianity. After all, Jesus was a Jew and he prayed to God not himself. Also, Paul was never accepted by the remaining members of Jesus' ministry and knew next to nothing about the man he preached about (with the exception of spending only 10 days with Peter after a 3 year preaching spree).

You refer to the use of hallucinogenic plants as "getting high". This label should also apply to prescription medication such as Paxil or the use of alcohol in cough syrup. Having used hallucinogenic plants myself I can tell you that there is a dimension (even if it is within our own brains and a result of chemical processes) that has given me a much deeper perspective about my place in the world. Just as with food or anything else, plant drugs are often misused by people that just want to "get high". If you are going to be a skeptic then I hope you will be more objective in your reasoning instead of peppering your facts with your own prejudices and obvious displays of intolerance.

Let's be a skeptic of the drug war instead of demonizing drugs. After all, alcohol and tobacco are very dangerous and addictive yet society functions fine even with their availability. Don't be programmed by the medical industry's relentless propaganda to secure their profits and steady employment. Don't be so quick to dismiss a spiritual reality that may exist beyond our senses that may require natural plant substances to discover. Also, base your arguments on scientific reasoning instead of intolerance.

James Keating

reply: In just three short paragraphs you demonstrated the wonders of your plants! In a flash, you were able to go from Castaneda to Christianity to hallucinogenic drugs to intolerance and prejudice; from demonizing the war on drugs to the claim that society functions fine even though alcohol and tobacco are legal; from the claim that there is a "medical industry" whose propaganda campaign keeps hallucinogens off the market and secures its profits; from the belief in a spiritual reality made accessible by hallucinogenic plants to the concluding advise that I base my arguments on scientific reasoning not intolerance.

Whew! I must say those plants are pretty powerful. They can make your mind fly and defy the effects of debilitating evidence! I'll bet your plants give you such power that you didn't even have to read beyond the Castaneda entry to discover my intolerance and lack of scientific reasoning.

I'll tell you what, Mr. Keating. I'll try not be programmed and duped by propaganda if you promise to do the same. Deal?

Carlos Castaneda

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