John C. Lilly

American physician
In the province of the mind, what one believes to be true is true or becomes true, within certain limits to be found experientially and experimentally. These limits are further beliefs to be transcended.

John Cunningham Lilly (6 January 191530 September 2001) was an American physician, neuroscientist, psychoanalyst, psychonaut, philosopher and writer. He was a researcher of the nature of consciousness using mainly isolation tanks, dolphin communication, and psychedelic drugs, sometimes in combination.

QuotesEdit

 
Take the game seriously so you'll engage in sex, have children, and participate in the whole human scenario.
  • In the course of some experiments I conducted from 1954 through 1956 I was suspended in water for several hours at a time, and I noticed that my skin gradually became more and more sensitive to tactile stimuli and an intense sense of pleasure resulted. However, if the stimulation was carried too far it became intensely irritating, I reasoned that the dolphin is suspended in water all of his life, twenty four hours a day, and possibly had developed an intensely sensitive skin.
    • Man and Dolphin (1961), p.172; as quoted in The Sounding of the Whale: Science and Cetaceans in the Twentieth Century (2012), by D. Graham Burnett, p.580
  • If a human being is isolated from other humans for a month or more, and is confined to a small area geographically and a small range of activities, his interest in his surroundings and its minutiae increase radically....Further, if a confined, isolated human is allowed brief contacts with other humans even without a shared language, he begins to find their presence comforting, and a pleasant relief from the "evenness" of his surroundings. If these humans controls his only sources of food as well as his sources of intraspecies stimulation, he mat adapt to their demands in subtle and not so subtle ways. He may, given time, learn their language, take on their beliefs, etc. When we catch a dolphin and put him alone in a small tank, we are imposing similar "solitary confinement" structures on him. Maybe we can thus capture his loyalty and his initiative.
    • Man and Dolphin (1961), p.190-191; as quoted in The Sounding of the Whale: Science and Cetaceans in the Twentieth Century (2012), by D. Graham Burnett, p.578-579
  • In the province of the mind, what one believes to be true is true or becomes true, within certain limits to be found experientially and experimentally. These limits are further beliefs to be transcended. In the mind, there are no limits... In the province of connected minds, what the network believes to be true, either is true or becomes true within certain limits to be found experientially and experimentally. These limits are further beliefs to be transcended. In the network's mind there are no limits.
    • The Human Biocomputer (1974)
  • If you get into these spaces [non-ordinary states of consciousness] at all, you must forget about them when you come back. You must forget you're omnipotent and omniscient and take the game seriously so you'll engage in sex, have children, and participate in the whole human scenario. When you come back from a deep tank session — or a coma or psychosis —there's always this extraterrestrial feeling. You have to read the directions in the glove compartment so you can run the human vehicle once more.
    • Tanks for the Memories : Floatation Tank Talks (1995)
  • At the highest level of satori from which people return, the point of consciousness becomes a surface or a solid which extends throughout the whole known universe. This used to be called fusion with the Universal Mind or God. In more modern terms you have done a mathematical transformation in which your centre of consciousness has ceased to be a travelling point and has become a surface or solid of consciousness... It was in this state that I experienced "myself" as melded and intertwined with hundreds of billions of other beings in a thin sheet of consciousness that was distributed around the galaxy. A "membrane".
    • Tanks for the Memories : Floatation Tank Talks (1995)

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