How Not To Argue Against LSD – The Amusing Case Of Kevin R.D. Shepherd And Robert Priddy
Kevin R.D. Shepherd attempted to defend LSD advocate Robert Priddy on his citizeninitiative.com domain. Needless to say, it can be thoroughly proven that Robert Priddy’s pseudo-criticism of LSD was nothing more than a shameless attempt to cover-up and blur his decades-long praise of mind-altering drugs. Kevin Shepherd said (underlined emphasis added by Moreno):
Kevin R.D. Shepherd:
That was a long time ago, though Priddy did subsequently compose three documents describing his LSD experiences, and which he placed on the web in the 1980s. These writings remained on the web while he was a devotee of Sathya Sai, though he deleted them at the end of his devotee phase.
As a critic of LSD, I questioned the relevance of these writings, though Priddy told me in 2007 that he had long outgrown the eulogies, to which he had added cautions. In The Psychedelic Experience, Priddy says that he did not become addicted and that his disillusionment with LSD led to his conclusion that “all psycho-chemicals of this nature should be avoided.” He stresses instead the “gradual evolution of the psyche by controlled moral and mental discipline.”
I do not myself agree with promotions of psychedelic experimentation. In fact, I can present strong arguments against that option. However, in cases where there is clear denial of the “spiritual enlightenment” syndrome, extenuating factors should be acknowledged by critics. Retrospective accounts of this nature are deemed relevant by some academic analysts, in that these accounts serve to offset the exuberant and misleading conclusions found elsewhere. It is apparent that Priddy does not believe in “LSD spirituality,” unlike many other writers on the subject of psychedelic experience. The intensity of LSD experiences is not denied by critical analysts. It is the psychoactive context of these experiences that is in dispute…
One should respect the warning of Priddy in the same document abovecited that:
“The use of biochemicals like LSD-25 to alter consciousness is like reaching for ‘plastic grapes.’ They do not allay one’s hunger. They can also create an illusion of knowledge and power, and that can be harmful.”
The Priddy version of LSD is thus very different to that of Stanislav Grof and other psychedelic enthusiasts, who interpret the “illusion of knowledge and power” in terms of an LSD “therapy” amounting to a “spiritual path” of neoshamanism. Those enthusiasts have an extension in MAPS (Multidisciplinary Assn for Psychedelic Studies), the controversial American organisation influenced by Grof, and which ingeniously includes data on the “risks and benefits” of drugs, though the underlying motivation is clearly one of drug promotion converging with the Grof paradigm.
Robert Priddy’s Denial: LSD-Visions Were Not Hallucinations:
On Robert Priddy’s Anti-Baba blog, he said the following about his LSD-induced hallucinations:
Robert Priddy: On LSD-25 and alleged “drug-induced hallucinations” Moreno makes false assumptions in dismissing LSD-25 experiences merely as induced hallucinations – it is very far from being so simple. Hallucinations can occur as a result of LSD, but they did not in my case. I was a student interested in psychiatry and psychology and my dose of LSD-25 was actually provided by the Norwegian Minister of Health explicitly for experimental purposes! Only one who has experienced it can have any idea at all of what inner clarity and scope of the mind may be released, if one is well-balanced and fortunate in the circumstances. In that I was in company with many well-known writers and hands-on researchers on the subject (egs. Aldous Huxley, Gerald Heard, Professor Susan Blackmore etc.) The dangers are considerable for borderline psychotics and others, so experiments are definitely not to be recommended to the public.
In Robert Priddy’s detailed LSD articles (and in a subsequent update added by him after a Pro-Sai Activist found the LSD-related webpages), he never stated that his LSD-25 was “provided by the Norwegian Minister of Health explicitly for experimental purposes”. Robert Priddy specifically stated he first experimented with cannabis then later experimented with LSD when he was 26 years old in 1963 with his friend Eric Steadman (with whom he shared a “perfect unspoken telepathic awareness”) and the entire episode was saved on a tape-recorder he turned on.
Although Robert Priddy wrote about his LSD experiences in depth, he never mentioned anything about any University officials, volunteer testing, Karl Evang or that the LSD-25 he took was “provided by the Norwegian Minister of Health explicitly for experimental purposes”. Furthermore, Robert Priddy admitted he experimented with cannabis before he experimented with LSD in 1963, experimented with “strong bio-chemicals” and LSD years after he experimented with LSD in 1963 and even wrote about another LSD-induced hallucination in 1965. Therefore, Robert Priddy fully acknowledged he experimented with drugs prior to and after his initial LSD trip in 1963. Was Robert Priddy also using cannabis and other “strong bio-chemicals” for “experimental purposes”? Although Robert Priddy whined that his druggy years are “outdated” and “ancient”, it is amusing to note the he eulogized his “outdated” and “ancient” druggy years:
- In 1988 (25 years later) in his LSD article entitled “TRUTH, BEING AND BLISS – AN AMAZING PSYCHEDELIC EXPERIENCE – Described By Robert C. Priddy – British author & ret’d researcher and teacher in philosophy and sociology, University of Oslo, Norway”: “I try here to give as truthful an account as I can of what befell me in 1963. In the intervening 25 years I have continually been returning to that experience as as source of inspiration and in the hope that the fullest possible light may be shed on it for me.” (LSD Reference).
- In 1994 (31 years later) in his book “Source Of The Dream”, pg: 16-7, Chapter 2: ‘When the Soil is Ready’: “A totally mind-shattering and subsequently most wonderful and intensely ecstatic experience befell me one day, as if from out of the blue. Much could be said on the subject, as it is an almost entirely misunderstood one and thus very controversial, but I do not believe doing so would appreciably enlighten anyone who has not actually had the very same experience. I am certain that no words can capture the vital nature and truth of such an experience of transcendental consciousness. I mention it because, without its having befallen me, I cannot guess how I might otherwise have been able to realize the value of pursuing spiritual development and exerting any measure of the determination, and one-pointedness that such a course eventually requires. The experience probably did not improve me much outwardly, if at all, but inwardly it altered my life in various quite crucial ways. I could simply no longer manage to regard normal worldly experience as the be-all and end-all of life. Having been forced to see my usual self and the mind literally from outside, with merciless clarity, through knowing and temporarily becoming the sheer all-pervasiveness of a sanctified joy, peace, and unrestricted awareness that underlies everything, I later came to know how that experience both consoled me and yet set me apart. Like a two-edged sword, it strengthened my insight, yet isolated me for many years in lonliness, for I had the burden of both incommunicable experience and a certain spiritual pride.” (LSD Reference).
- In 2009 (46 years later) on his Anti-Baba blog in an article entitled “Copyright Infringement By SathyaSaiBaba”.
In the referenced quote above, Robert Priddy claimed “I was a student interested in psychiatry and psychology”. Robert Priddy told a different story in his LSD article entitled “The Psychedelic Experience – On how I came to psychedelic experiences By Robert C. Priddy”. In that article, Robert Priddy said he was a student of philosophy and sociology (not “psychiatry and psychology”) and that he considered psychology “mostly irrelevant to understanding people, myself or anything remotely like the psyche”!
It is also significant to point out that the scientific community (contrary to Robert Priddy’s layman claims) unanimously agrees that LSD is a hallucinogenic drug and is commonly referred to as a “hallucinogen” (Refs: LSD 01 – LSD 02 – LSD 03 – LSD 04).
When Sai Devotees attribute extraordinary experiences, dreams or visions to Sathya Sai Baba (without the aid of drugs), Robert Priddy bashes those experiences as mere flights of fantasy, imagination, mental disorder and/or projection. However, when it comes to Robert Priddy’s LSD experiences (induced with the aid of drugs), he proudly proclaims them as genuine and bona-fide! This is the type of Anti-Guru / Pro-LSD weirdo who continually attempts to invalidate Sai devotees for their spiritual experiences! If a person claimed a spiritual experience, who would you be more inclined to believe:
- A person who never used drugs?
- A person tripping on LSD?
And let us not forget what exactly Robert Priddy claimed was revealed to him when he tripped on LSD. Robert Priddy claimed he saw (amidst lots of fluff and airy-fairy scenes) his wrist break with the bones sticking out of his flesh, compared the experience to what “schizophrenics may experience with intensity”, that his mind was ”deranged” and that his mind was “shattered into pieces again and again”. Gee, that doesn’t sound “hallucinatory” at all, does it? (sarcasm implied)
Finally, let us take a look at the three people that Robert Priddy cited to support and defend his views on LSD. I wonder what Kevin R.D. Shepherd would say:
- Susan Blackmore: “I hope that one day soon it will be; that as a society we will prove wise enough to use LSD for its highest potential, not its worst. And for purely selfish reasons, I hope this will happen in time for me to take LSD again in my lifetime and that, like Huxley, I may be able to take it on my deathbed.” (Ref)
- Aldous Huxley was a humanist and pacifist, and he was latterly interested in spiritual subjects such as parapsychology, Human Potential Movement, Vedanta and philosophical mysticism. He is also well known for advocating and taking psychedelics. Aldous Huxley took LSD on his deathbed and referred to LSD as “a mystical, religious experience”.
- Gerald Heard was a historian, science writer, educator, LSD advocate, philosopher and friend of Aldous Huxley.
Therefore, Robert Priddy’s current views on LSD are based on the views of LSD advocates he considered authorities on the subject!
LSD Advocate Robert Priddy Refers Readers To A Pro-Drug Website:
Attempting to bolster the case for his experimentation with LSD, Robert Priddy posted the following link on his Anti-Baba blog:
Robert Priddy: For objective source materials and intelligent discussions of LSD-25, see this major Forum
Since “scholar” Robert Priddy (who always boasts how thorough his research is) provided a link to drugs-forum.com (and described it as being “objective” and providing “intelligent discussions of LSD-25”), he apparently researched the site thoroughly and approved of its contents.
Let us take a closer look at drugs-forum.com, a website Robert Priddy described as “objective” and providing “intelligent discussions of LSD-25”.
First and foremost, drugs-forum.com is an international Pro-Drug website where users can request and/or share information on how to take, grow, purchase, make and use all types of illegal drugs, including LSD-25 (Refs: 01 – 02 – 03 or View Entire LSD Threads). All of these LSD-related threads prove that the discussions therein are far removed from being “objective” and do not provide “intelligent discussions on LSD-25” (unless you happen to be a drug addict).
Drugs-forum.com provides numerous threads advocating for legalizing all types of drugs (Ref) and even provides threads about which drugs maximize sexual experiences (Ref). Drugs-forum.com also provides picture galleries so that users can identify hallucinogenic mushrooms, peyote, opiods, hallucinogenic cacti and hallucinogenic plants (Ref). A majority of the posts on the drugs-forum.com domain are chock full of invectives and graphic language. This is the type of Pro-Drug forum that “scholar” Robert Priddy described as being “objective” and providing “intelligent discussions on LSD-25”! Perhaps Robert Priddy posts on that Pro-Drug forum since he claims to know it so well, he actually provided a link to it on his Anti-Baba blog.
Robert Priddy revealed his drug advocacy and revealed his standards for “objectivity” and “intelligent discussion” by citing a Pro-Drug forum full of invectives that is intended for drug users! Thank you, Mr. Priddles for coming clean once again!
Robert Priddy’s defense of LSD is in severe conflict with Kevin R.D. Shepherd’s Anti-LSD / Anti-Drug position.
Robert Priddy, Kevin Shepherd, Drugs-Forum.com & Stanislav Grof:
It is also amusing to note that the drugs-forum.com webpage that Robert Priddy linked to (which he described as being “objective” and providing “intelligent discussions of LSD-25”), linked directly to another drugs-forum.com LSD webpage that strongly advocated for Stanislav Grof’s book “History Of LSD Therapy” (Ref). The drugs-forum.com website provides over 120 pro-articles on Stanislav Grof, holotropic breathwork and Pro-LSD research (Ref). The reason why this is so amusing is because Robert Priddy professes friendship and alliance with Kevin Shepherd, a staunch Anti-Drug, Anti-LSD and Anti-Grof critic! Isn’t it ironic that Kevin R.D. Shepherd professes friendship and alliance with Robert Priddy although:
- Robert Priddy eulogized and promoted LSD for those who are “well-balanced and fortunate in the circumstances”?
- Robert Priddy eulogized his LSD-induced experiences as bona fide revelations and not as the result of hallucinations (an absurd and dubious claim at best)?
- Robert Priddy solicited the objectivity and intelligent discussions of a Pro-Drug forum intended for drug users?
- Robert Priddy solicited the objectivity and intelligent discussions of a Pro-Drug forum intended for drug users that strongly advocates for Stanislav Grof, Holotropic Breathwork and the benefits of LSD?
What more can I say more about Robert Priddy and his laughable views, absurd arguments and clown-like antics about LSD? This is the guy who is attempting to “expose” Sathya Sai Baba. Well, the truth is now out about Robert Priddy (direct from his personal blog) and there is no stopping it! Expect Robert Priddy to do damage control, offer no apologies, deflect from the issue and bore everyone with his mindless prattle. Afterall, that is what he does best.
After publishing this article about Robert Priddy’s loud endorsement of drugs-forum.com, a Pro-Drug Forum intended for drug users (which he described as containing “objective source materials and intelligent discussions of LSD-25”), Robert Priddy rushed to do damage control (just as Moreno predicted he would) and removed the link to drugs-forum.com by saying:
Robert Priddy: “Please note: Having looked more closely at the web pages on LSD-25 I had first linked to here I found them partly very misleading and that there was an overall bias towards possibly dangerous viewpoints, though there was also nonetheless a good deal of accurate historical and other materials in them and/or linked to them. As a whole those pages do not represent my standpoint, therefore the link is deleted”
“Scholar” Robert Priddy (who constantly claims he conducts thorough research) argued that drugs-forum.com (a Pro-Drug Forum intended for drug users) contained “objective source materials and intelligent discussions of LSD-25”). Now, however, Robert Priddy is claiming that his initial assessement of drugs-forum.com was wrong and the website is not as “objective” or as ”intelligent” as he first assessed it to be.
Why doesn’t Robert Priddy specifically tell us which webpages on drugs-forum.com (a Pro-Drug Forum intended for drug users) contained a “good deal of accurate historical and other materials in them and/or linked to them”?
Perhaps Robert Priddy’s change of heart was prompted by an email I sent to Kevin Shepherd about Priddy’s Pro-Drug advocacy? Kevin Shepherd is a notorious critic of the Findhorn Foundation, Stanislav Grof and LSD. Kevin Shepherd has a lot of face to lose by allying himself with LSD-advocate Robert Priddy. Well, for interested Findhorn Foundation members, Stanislav Grof advocates and LSD critics, Robert Priddy still believes that there is absolutely nothing wrong with using LSD and that his LSD trips were not hallucinatory in nature (although LSD is a hallucinogen)!
Rather, Robert Priddy would have the world believe that LSD is simply a great “mind clearer” that produces out-of-body experiences that result in enlightenment and visions of broken bones sticking out of bloody flesh! What more can one do but laugh out loud at Kevin Shepherd and his LSD-advocating friend, Robert Priddy?
LSD advocate Robert Priddy is the person with whom Kevin R.D. Shepherd openly professes alliance. Consequently, Kevin R.D. Shepherd’s Anti-LSD rants are to be considered diluted, self-serving, hypocritical and selective. Kevin Shepherd’s defense of LSD advocate Robert Priddy is akin to his defense of Pyschic Trance Medium Conny Larsson.