The process of awakening to the realities of our society, culture and our humanity is something that many people are experiencing in these interesting times. For many, this new perspective on life leaves them feeling helpless and frightened, for others this process leads to greater personal growth and satisfaction with life. For people like activist and author J.G. Vibes, waking up inspires them with abundant creative energy and a passionate drive to spread the word, assisting whole-heartedly in the transformation and evolution of our society.
J.G. Vibes is a vocal activist, author of dozens of eye-opening articles about our society and culture, and the author of the recently published book, The Alchemy of the Modern Renaissance. He also promotes raves, all-night dance music parties, is an aficionado of electronic music and has a high appreciation for artwork that points at overlooked truths in our world.
I caught up with J.G. to ask him some questions about his personal awakening, the rave culture, and the potential for a society gone mad with consumerism, war and debauchery. Enjoy!
WT - How did your personal awakening come about, and who were the people who influenced you most along the way?
J.G. - This was a long drawn out process that took many years, experiencing life altering situations, stumbling upon the right research and just putting the pieces together over a long period of time. Psychedelics also played a fairly important role in this transition. I had a few friends that supported me in these endeavors, but I always seemed to be inspired by artists who would embed revolutionary themes in their work. This was something I began to appreciate more and more as I got deeper into my research, because I came to find that a lot of these artists that I was following my whole life were referencing the things I just began studying.
WT - How are raving and the ceremonial rituals of the world’s shamanic cultures linked, and why is this important to a world in increasing chaos?
JG - This is a really good and important question. As many people know, our species has a long history of using psychedelics for self-healing, meditation and achieving some kind of enlightening experience. Our Ancient ancestors would take psychoactive substances in group settings, many times with music and dancing around a campfire. I would consider the rave culture that we see today as a modernized form of this same type of shamanic activity. There are still cultures out there that carry on these practices the old fashioned way, and that’s great, but in the western world the shamanic culture has manifested itself in a way that is uniquely fitted to our society. Our ancestors danced out in the woods with fire, primitive musical instruments and psychoactive substances, now in the present day we dance in clubs, with flashing lights, loud electronic music and psychedelic substances every now and then. If you think about it, it’s really the same idea, just for a different generation.
This is important in the times that we are facing because in so many ways our culture and the traditions that we have inherited from the oppressors of our ancestors are what is causing so many among us to act in irrational ways. Psychedelics allow us to think outside of the cultural boxes that we have spent our lives inside of, and in many cases points out the irrational nature of our own actions, so they can be properly managed and overcome.
WT - What role should psychedelics play in the transformation of our society?
JG - Psychedelics are definitely one of my main interests, and I believe they can have a profound impact on our society if used responsibly. However, shamanism is just one of the many solutions that are needed to bring our world into balance. This is a personal solution that can help people overcome irrational behavior such as addiction, low self-esteem, nihilism, narcissism and abusive tendencies. With that being said, it’s important that we don’t forget about the big picture when dealing with self-healing and empowerment, we need to take what we learn from the psychedelic experience, share that knowledge with others, and use that knowledge to brainstorm workable solutions for the problems that are going on in the outside world.
WT - Many people look to Yoga, Tai Chi or other physical practices as a means to assist in the awakening process. How can dance also fill the role of a physical practice that awakens spirit?
JG - This is something that I have more personal experience with, and less book knowledge. There is something about dancing that definitely changes your whole vibration, its not something I can explain and it’s not something I can show studies to back up, but its definitely something that I’ve thought about a lot. In many ways I feel that dance, and the other physical practices that you mentioned release some of the natural psychoactive drugs that are stored in our bodies, but again I don’t know that for sure, so im open to any kind of information that could confirm or disprove that statement.
WT - The rave culture is known for its consumption of illicit substances. How are people in the rave scene drawing the line between enlightenment and self-destruction?
JG - This is a very difficult balance that has always been tough topic for the community. With electronic dance music getting more and more mainstream attention, it is attracting a lot of young people who have spent their whole lives being exposed to the overindulgent frat house culture that our society tends to glorify. This is where a lot of the negative stigma surrounding raves comes from, but in reality this is just a very small, albeit loud portion of the rave community. I would say that in reality you will find more sober people at a rave then you would at your average rock or hip hop concert. Not saying there is anything wrong with rock or hip hop, but people tend to overlook these more mainstream events even though they are often times far more dangerous than raves.
There still is a very serious need in this culture for the people involved in the industry, and the longtime members of the community to educate the newcomers and show them how to be responsible through leading by example. This is one of the main reasons why I got so involved with putting out these kinds of messages myself, because I felt that as a part of the industry I had a responsibility to do my part in keeping the integrity of our culture intact.
WT - In what ways is the banking and credit system we have in place contributing to people’s complacency about important political and social issues?
JG - Wow, this is a big one. I think mainly it serves to keep people distracted and divided. We live in a system of manufactured scarcity and planned obsolescence which basically keeps people on a hamster wheel just to survive. And once people get off that hamster wheel the last thing they want to do is read a book or get involved with a social movement. I think now though its gotten to the point where people are so hungry and that they have no choice but to start getting involved, so I’m sure that in the coming months we will see a lot more action.
WT - What are the psychological implications of growing up in a police state?
JG - I think almost every generation in some way or another has grown up in a police state, even if that police state was manifested in their home or school life. For most of history our species has treated children like 4th class citizens even in times of peace, and in times of oppression like we have today it is even more damaging for children. In times of peace, atleast children have a light at the end of the tunnel, they know that they are going to graduate someday and they wont have to be bullied by their teachers anymore, they know that they are going to be able to move out of the house someday and escape their overbearing. However, in a police state there is no light at the end of the tunnel, you are forced to deal with permanent childhood, always having to bow down to someone. These conditions cause people to be dependent and in a constant state of fear.
WT - Why is there no effective anti-war movement in America today?
JG - I think the two topics that we just discussed play a major role in this problem. Due to the overwhelming police state people are afraid to speak out, and as a result of their financial burdens people are so distracted with just putting food on the table that its hard for them to come to grips with the reality that there are innocent people in a half dozen different countries around the world who are being killed in their name. Aside from that im at a loss, its blatantly obvious that this government and those who sit behind it are attempting to colonize and pillage the planet but people still refuse to grasp the sinister nature of whats happening. As with many things I gotta point the education system and media which has really instilled our generation with a sense of learned helplessness.
WT - In what ways has waking up, educating yourself, and being vocal affected your life?
JG - It has pretty much been a positive experience all around, I was in a very very bad place before I got into activism. I was a severe alcoholic, drinking every night for years, I was overall extremely nihilistic and disgusted with the world. Looking back I cant even imagine that I was the same person. Eventually I stopped drinking completely, which was definitely the best decision for me although I certainly don’t judge anyone who likes to have a drink now and then.
There may have been some social implications that activism has had on my life, but I cant say I mind to much. After that day where I realized that I was a slave and that the civilization i was born into was in a freefall to collapse, my social life took an immediate backseat. I no longer had any interest in spending my time the way I used to, and personally im much happier with how I spend time today. I may not go out as much as I used to and might be behind on all the local gossip, but spending my time being creative and improving the world for the children I may have someday is much more worthwhile in my opinion.
WT - How are your efforts to educate and awaken people paying off?
JG - I think pretty well, I mean. I feel that im doing my part to the best of my ability. This is a tough one for me to judge because there are so many factors at play, I know that the community that im a part of has grown so much in the past few years, in so many ways. There are now a ton of people out there doing the same thing that im doing, and they are making waves too. I don’t know how much of it I can take credit for, but it really doesn’t matter. What does matter is that its happening, and everyday im impressed with what I see from people.
WT - What do you find most inspiring about the future?
JG - Just the fact that more and more people are getting involved and pushing a lot of these taboo subjects into the mainstream. I remember just afew years ago noone knew what the federal reserve was, people believed in the 2 party system, people believed the media, now all of these institutions are coming into question. Our situation may seem dire, and it probably is, but I really feel that we are on the upswing simply due to the fact that people are actually paying attention now.
WT - Please tell us a bit about your recently released book, Alchemy of the Modern Renaissance.
JG - This is a book that has been about 3 or 4 years in the making, it features 87 different essays relating to topics that I think are important to our global situation and the fight for freedom. I tried to be as solutions oriented as possible, while still focusing on the reality of our situation. All of my work is carefully sourced, and I encourage the ready many times throughout the book to question every word that I say, check my sources and do their own research to come to their own understanding. This was just something I started working on over the years, because I wanted to get involved in the movement and writing is free. Being the starving artist that I am, I never had much cash for video editing software or anything like that to create a documentary, so writing seemed like something that I could actually manage with my budget. I am very proud of how the book turned out and I am hoping to turn it into a series someday. What is somewhat unique about this book is I start many of these essays with quotes from popular artists and musicians which relate to the topic at hand, to show the parallels between the popular culture that everyone is familiar with and the occult history that has been hidden from us. For a full table of contents and breakdown of all 87 chapters check this link here.
Featured Image: Matt Murphy – Flickr