Best quotes by Timothy Leary

Timothy Leary

Timothy Leary

American psychologist and author

Timothy Francis Leary (October 22, 1920 – May 31, 1996) was an American psychologist and author known for his strong advocacy of psychedelic drugs. Evaluations of Leary are polarized, ranging from bold oracle to publicity hound. He was "a hero of American consciousness", according to Allen Ginsberg, and Tom Robbins called him a "brave neuronaut".

As a clinical psychologist at Harvard University, Leary worked on the Harvard Psilocybin Project from 1960 to 1962. He tested the therapeutic effects of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and psilocybin, which were legal in the U.S. at the time, in the Concord Prison Experiment and the Marsh Chapel Experiment. Other Harvard faculty questioned his research's scientific legitimacy and ethics because he took psychedelics along with his subjects and allegedly pressured students to join in. But one of Leary's students, Robert Thurman, has denied that Leary pressured unwilling students. Harvard fired Leary and his colleague Richard Alpert (later known as Ram Dass) in May 1963. Many people only learned of psychedelics after the Harvard scandal.

Leary believed that LSD showed potential for therapeutic use in psychiatry. He used LSD himself and developed a philosophy of mind expansion and personal truth through LSD. After leaving Harvard, he continued to publicly promote psychedelic drugs and became a well-known figure of the counterculture of the 1960s. He popularized catchphrases that promoted his philosophy, such as "turn on, tune in, drop out", "set and setting", and "think for yourself and question authority". He also wrote and spoke frequently about transhumanist concepts of space migration, intelligence increase, and life extension (SMI²LE). Leary developed the eight-circuit model of consciousness in his book Exo-Psychology (1977) and gave lectures, occasionally calling himself a "performing philosopher".

During the 1960s and 1970s, Leary was arrested 36 times. President Richard Nixon once called him "the most dangerous man in America".

All quotes by Timothy Leary:

Throughout human history, as our species has faced the frightening, terrorizing fact that we do not know who we are, or where we are going in this ocean of chaos, it has been the authorities - the political, the religious, the educational authorities - who attempted to comfort us by giving us order, rules, regulations, informing - forming in our minds - their view of reality. To think for yourself you must question authority and learn how to put yourself in a state of vulnerable open-mindedness, chaotic, confused vulnerability to inform yourself.

You're only as young as the last time you changed your mind.

Everyone carries a piece of the puzzle. Nobody comes into your life by mere coincidence. Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others.

People have to go out of their mind before they can come to their senses.

TURN ON. to contact the ancient energies and wisdoms that are built into your nervous system. They provide unspeakable pleasure and revelation. TUNE IN. to harness and communicate these new perspectives in a harmonious dance with the external world. DROP OUT. detach yourself from the tribal game. current models of social adjustement - mechanized, computerized, socialized, intellectualized, televised, sanforized - make no sense to the new LSD generation who see clearly that American society is becoming an air-conditioned anthill.

You are a powerful, unlimited and eternal soul who is here to enjoy the experience of creativity and contribute to humanity's evolution.

Information is Power. Think For Yourself. CAUTION: proper use of the brain is not endorsed by federal governments nor huge corporations involved in serious financial profit from a brainwashed and enslaved population. Mild discomfort may occur as confusing independent thought challenges popular views of the world.

The aim of human life is to know thyself. Think for yourself. Question authority. Think with your friends. Create, create new realities. Philosophy is a team sport. Philosophy is the ultimate, the ultimate aphrodisiac pleasure. Learning how to operate your brain, learning how to operate your mind, learning how to redesign chaos

You cannot use butterfly language to communicate with caterpillars

My favorite three words in the English language are: ’I don’t know’, because every time I say them, I learn something new.

The brain is not a blind, reactive machine, but a complex, sensitive biocomputer that we can program. And if we don't take the responsibility for programming it, then it will be programmed unwittingly by accident or by the social environnement.

Take responsibility for making your own life beautiful.

Almost everyone today is brain-damaged by our education which is designed to produce docile automatons.

There are no bad drugs. There's simply stupid people who don't know how to use them.

Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition.

Intelligence is the ultimate aphrodisiac

If you want to change the way people respond to you, change the way you respond to people.

Acid is not for every brain .... Only the healthy, happy, wholesome, handsome, hopeful, humorous, high-velocity should seek these experiences. This elitism is totally self-determined. Unless you are self-confident, self-directed, self-selected, please abstain.

All suffering is caused by being in the wrong place. If you're unhappy where you are, MOVE.

To use your head, you have to go out of your mind.

Monotheism is the primitive religion which centers human consciousness on Hive Authority. There is One God and His Name is _______ (substitute Hive-Label). If there is only One God then there is no choice, no option, no selection of reality. There is only Submission or Heresy. The word Islam means "submission". The basic posture of Christianity is kneeling. Thy will be done.

What do you think deja vu is for?". Face it, you even want to talk to that girl in the elevator. But what if that girl in the elevator (and the balding man who walks past your cubicle at work) are thinking the same thing? Who knows what you might learn from taking a chance on conversation with a stranger? Everyone carries a piece of the puzzle. Nobody comes into your life by mere coincidence. Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others.

One cannot evolve from one's robothood until one realizes how totally one has been robotized.

Psychedelic drugs cause paranoia, confusion, and total loss of reality in politicians that have never taken them.

Surfers are the ‘throw-aheads’ of mankind, not the dregs; they aren’t the black sheep of humanity, but the futurists and they are leading the way to where man ultimately wants to be. The act of the ride is the epitome of ‘be here now’, and the tube ride is the most acute form of that. Which is: your future is right ahead of you, the past is exploding behind you, your wake is disappearing, your footprints are washed from the sand. It’s a non-productive, non-depletive act that’s done purely for the value of the dance itself. And that is the destiny of man.

Think for yourself and question authority.

If you don't like what you're doing, you can always pick up your needle and move to another groove.

There are three side effects of acid: enhanced long-term memory, decreased short-term memory, and I forget the third.

The Caterpillar cannot understand the butterfly

Of course, the drug does not produce the transcendent experience. It merely acts as a chemical key — it opens the mind, frees the nervous system of its ordinary patterns and structures.

LSD, wisely used by professionals, could reprogram enough nervous systems to accelerate consciousness and intelligence before we laid ourselves and our planet waste."To use your head you have to go out of your mind" "You are a God, act like one"

Remember also: beyond the restless flowing electricity of life is the ultimate reality- The Void. Your own awareness, not formed into anything possessing form or color, is naturally void. The Final Reality. The All Good. The All Peaceful. The light. The Radiance. The movement is the fire of life from which we all come. Join it. It is part of you.

The word "religion" beautifully defines itself, of course. It translates "to bind" from the Latin--"re" means back and "ligare" means to tie up. All religions are straightjackets, jackets for the straight.

Man's best friend is his dogma.

To describe externals, you become a scientist. To describe experience, you become an artist.

Whenever in doubt, turn off your mind, relax, float downstream.

When you get the message, hang up the phone.

Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others.

The danger of psychedelic drugs, the danger of mind-opening, the danger of consciousness expansion, the danger of inner discovery is a danger to the establishment.

The first narcotics bust in history is Jehovah busting Adam and Eve for eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge.

I learned more about psychology in the five hours after taking these mushrooms than in the preceding 15 years of studying and doing research in psychology.

Prayer is ecstatic communication with your innernavigational computer.

After you turn on, don't spend the rest of your life contemplating the inner wonders. Begin immediately expressing your revelation in acts of beauty.

Living, dying, and thinking... they're all team sports.

By drop out, I mean to detach yourself from involvement in secular, external social games.

The language of God is not English or Latin; the language of God is cellular and molecular.

Drop Out--detach yourself from the external social drama which is as dehydrated and ersatz as TV. Turn On--find a sacrament which returns you to the temple of God, your own body. Go out of your mind. Get high. Tune In--be reborn. Drop back in to express it. Start a new sequence of behavior that reflects your vision.

A man without justice is a beast, and a man who would make himself a beast forgets the pain of being a man.

In the information-communication civilization of the 21st Century, creativity and mental excellence will become the ethical norm. The world will be too dynamic, complex, and diversified, too cross-linked by the global immediacies of modern (quantum) communication, for stability of thought or dependability of behaviour to be successful.

We seem to inhabit a universe made up of a small number of elements-particles-bits that swirl in chaotic clouds, occasionally clustering together in geometrically logical temporary configurations.

The mission of DNA is to evolve nervous systems able to escape from the doomed planet and contact manifestations of the same amino-acid seeding that have evolved in other solar systems. The mission is the message--to escape and come home.

I wanted to scientize myth and mythologize science.

The genetic stage of a gene pool can be identified by the personality characteristics of the local God. Jehovah of Genesis is a low-level barbarian macho punk God. He boastfully claims to have created the heaven and the stars and the world, but provides no technical details or replicable blueprints. His preoccupations, whims, anxieties, jealousies, rules and hatred of women are primitive mammalian brain. His petty prides are primate.

Anything is possible after midnight.

Get stoned and abandon all constructive activity.

We are dealing with the best-educated generation in history. They are a hundred times better educated than their grandparents, and ten times more sophisticated. There has never been such an open-minded group. The problem is that no one is giving them anything fresh. They've got a brain dressed up with nowhere to go.

Inner reality is certainly more important than the outer reality.

Express the psychedelic with the cybernetic. Turn on, tune in and boot up.

Essentially, there's a universe inside your brain. The number of connections possible inside your brain is limitless. And as people have learned to have more managerial and direct creative access to their brains, they have also developed matrices or networks of people that communicate electronically. There are direct brain/computer link-ups. You can just jack yourself in and pilot your brain around in cyberspace-electronic space.

One cannot understand the rhythms and meanings of the outer world until one has mastered the dialects of the body.

At one point consciousness-altering devices like the microscope and telescope were criminalized for exactly the same reasons that psychedelic plants were banned in later years. They allow us to peer into bits and zones of Chaos.

What human beings consciously wish is often quite at variance with the results their reflex patterns automatically create for them.

Secrecy is the original sin. The fig leaf in the Garden of Eden. The basic crime against love.

The universe is an intelligence test.

Learning how to operate a soul figures to take time.

Hippies started the ecology movement. They combated racism. They liberated sexual stereotypes, encouraged change, individual pride, and self-confidence. They questioned robot materialism. In four years they managed to stop the Vietnam War. They got marijuana decriminalized in fourteen states during the Carter Administration.

The brain is the key, the brain is the source, the brain is God. Everything that humans do is neuroecology.

Grow within the flow.

Hippy is an establishment label for a profound, invisible, underground, evolutionary process. For every visible hippy, barefoot, beflowered, beaded, there are a thousand invisible members of the turned-on underground. Persons whose lives are tuned in to their inner vision, who are dropping out of the TV comedy of American Life.

The most important thing you do in your life is to die.

In the Eleusinian mysteries, they would always warn people, "if you go in here, your ego will die. You're going to have to confront all your past hang-ups, strip them off, and be a changed person." One emperor of Rom who wanted to be initiated in the Eleusinian mysteries said, "That's interesting, I approve of what you're doing, but I don't want to be changed.

We live our lives from A-Z, but forget the other 24 letters in between.

Turn on, Tune in, Drop out.

I am 100 percent in favor of the intelligent use of drugs, and 1,000 percent against the thoughtless use of them, whether caffeine or LSD. And drugs are not central to my life.

Human beings have a right to change their consciousness, and it is unconscionable and absolutely wrong for any government or any person to stand in the way of someone choosing to change their consciousness.