t’s 20 years since Terence Mckenna passed away, and I decided today to make a new film dedicated to him, Manual of Evasion LX2020 (proto-mix), with brand new material from 1994. It will premiere tomorrow in Youtube, during the tribute to Terence, hosted by his brother Dennis Mckenna.(link to 1994’s Manual of Evasion here
Legendary Terence McKenna was an an expert in the matters that go beyond the consensual reality in which we are supposed to live. He was (and is) a true “exemplar” (the definition Terence had for a shaman), a neuro-adventurer who was brave enough to be both the scientist and the lab rat. Maybe his methods were not much different from Henry James’s introspection methods. Terence was a wild one, he used his own body and conscience to find new worlds, and he shared his experiences with us, always telling us that if we want to understand something, we must experience it. Maybe like the monkeys did when they found a new language. After I red The Food of The Gods and heard a thousand times Terence’s collaboration with The Shamen (Re evolution), in 1992, I dreamed of doing a film with him. The opportunity came when I was invited to make a feature for Lisbon European Cultural Capital 1994. I also wanted to give Lisbon a different kind of culture, in turn, I invited Robert Anton Wilson, Rudy Rucker… and Terence Mckenna, We immediately became very good friends . Terence was supposed to shoot for only five days, but he offered to stay and spend 5 more wild days shooting with us. So, Terence became the protagonist of the film. We started to improvise more and more. And what a sense of humor Terence had! We laughed a lot of ourselves. He reminded me of my best friend in primary school, he made me feel at peace with myself. While shooting I said to Terence I didn’t had a clue what the film would become and he told me not to worry, that things would flow in the right direction. But I must confess that I was never happy with the final result, so I did several different versions of Manual of Evasion LX94. We kept communicating via email and Terence would write things like “let’s plot and scheme and make a revolution…” Then I did Zombietown 23, a short film for Portugal’s World Exposition 1998, with the voice of Terence, talking about the “Living Deads” in consumerist society. Terence was a true shaman and more than that: he showed me that I could be one, that I already was one, because I’ve also seen the future many times, like Terence and a lot of artists and philosophers and scientists did.
When I was told that Terence was dead it was a great shock. We were physically together for just ten days, but I virtually lived with him during many years, editing and reediting Manual of Evasion LX94, listening thousand times to his speeches and reflections, hearing him say, after a take: “how could I have said this bullshit?”, doubting himself in a very ironic way, not making a dogma of anything he said . He was indeed someone you didn’t follow, he showed you your own path. So I followed mine, with Terence in my heart. That his conscience lives in all of us who found his life and work inspiring in so many ways.
PS: Today I was looking through images of Terence in Manual of Evasion LX94, images I am very used to, but when i found video-photos of Terence between takes, smiling at the camera, with his intense gaze and very pure look I couldn’t help shedding some tears, that remain while I write this piece. Then I reminded that then I told Terence that I didn’t have a kid, he told me that my spirit would never go to the future, it would go back to the past. I never forgot that, and I only felt at peace with myself when my son was born. Thanks Terence, that was an extraordinary adventure. I miss you a lot.
I 04/03 • 5:30pmPDT / 01:30BST : Premiere of never-released video of Terence lecturing at Esalen in 1989. Hosted by Mike Margolies, Psychedelic Seminars. Virtual Fireside Chat with DENNIS MCKENNA & ERIK DAVIS. Register separately with Psychedelic Seminars:https://www.crowdcast.io/e/mckenna/ SAT 04/04 • 12:00pmPDT / 20:00BST : Dennis hosting Virtual Fireside Chats with BRUCE DAMER, followed by LUIS EDUARDO LUNA
Save your seat. Spread the word.
FRI. 04/03 Premiere Launch: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/mckenna/
SAT. 04/04, 04/11 & 04/18 Fireside Chats:https://www.crowdcast.io/e/tributetoterence
(Note separate registrations)