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When I first started my programs in the late 1960s I created black and white artwork for my posters. Some asked in 1971 why I did not use shading. “Don’t know how,” I replied. Shortly after I was given a hit of acid. My first thought was, “Everything’s been done. There is nothing new. Why don’t you kill yourself?”
I like what most refer to as “Bad Trips.”
Instead of freaking out I decided to do something I had never done before. This was the first time I did stipple work (the cross hatching and dotting). I spent the entire trip creating this. Looking at it I go right back to that moment. We are born, like every other creature on this planet, knowing. We are taught to believe we must be taught. That is not true. ACID knocks out the part of our self that says it does not know. LSD allows the part that does know to come forth.
From ON LIBERTY by John Stuart Mill; “The initiation of all wise or noble things comes and must come from individuals; generally at first from some one individual. The honor and glory of the average man is that he is capable of following that initiative; that he can respond to wise and noble things: I am not countenancing the sort of ‘hero worship’ which applauds the strong man of genius for forcibly seizing on the government and making it do his bidding in spite of itself. All he can claim is freedom to point the way. The power of compelling others into it is not only inconsistent with the freedom and development of the rest, but corrupting to the strong man himself. It does seem, however, that when the opinions of masses of merely average men are everywhere become or becoming the dominant power, that the counterpoint and corrective to that tendency would be the more and more pronounced individuality of those who stand on the higher eminences of thought. It is in these circumstances most especially, that exceptional individuals, instead of being deterred, should be encouraged in acting differently from the mass. In other times therewas no advantage in doing so, unless they acted not only differently but better. In this age, the mere example of non-conformity, the mere refusal to bend the knee to custom, is itself a service. Precisely because the tyranny of opinion is such as to make eccentricity a reproach, it is desirable, in order to break through that tyranny,that people should be eccentric.
“Eccentricity has always abounded when and where strength of character has abounded; and the amount of eccentricity in a society has generally been proportional to the amount of genius, mental vigor and moral courage it contained. That so few now dare to be eccentric marks the chief danger of the time.”—John Stuart Mill (1806-1873).
It has only gotten worse since John Stuart Mill wrote this. We need weird people now more than ever. Being contrary is a virtue. Embrace it. As Jean Cocteau said, “Whatever the world condemns you for make it your own. It is yourself.” That takes courage.
THE I CHING teaches that when our work is good it meets with praise thousands of miles away while those near at hand almost always dismiss it. The piece from the London, England Sunday Telegraph in 1993 bears witness to that. THE CINEFORUM is listed in the world’s number one travel guide, THE LONELY PLANT, at the top of its list of places to see in Ontario.
William S. Burroughs put it best. He said, “It’s all a matter of getting the self out of the way of the self.”
By that he meant it’s a matter or getting the self that has been taught to believe it does not know out of the way of the self that knows that it knows. LSD does that. LSD does that exceedingly well.–Reg Hartt 10/6/2018.

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