Author Archive | greggw

Anthropocene – On the Substance of a New Idea

Underwater Sculpture by Jason de Caires Taylor submerged off the coast of Cancun, Mexico Photo: Jason de Caires Taylor

Underwater Sculpture by Jason de Caires Taylor submerged off the coast of Cancun, Mexico Photo: Jason de Caires Taylor

The recent rise in the exploration of the concept of entering a different geologic age, the Anthropocene, is provoking interesting dialogue across the web—a dialogue that explores the multivalent conceptions that we have of our relationship with the natural world. This conversation is exciting, long overdue, and hopefully it’s just the beginning of a realignment of some of our deepest beliefs and assumptions about our entitlement as the dominant species on Earth.

anthropocene-taylor-sculpture

Anthropocene (2011) Underwater sculpture by Jason de Caires Taylor submerged off the coast of Cancun, Mexico

Here is a link to an article in GDC Interiors Journal with a contribution by Synergetic Press author Christian Schwägerl that provides an accessible, yet in-depth analysis of the major concepts involved and their philosophical underpinnings.

H.R. Giger and the Zeitgeist of the Twentieth Century

hr_giger_bookStanislav Grof, the pioneer of consciousness research, in a unique essay, interprets HR Giger’s visionary world for the first time from the perspective of transpersonal psychology. To date, HR Giger’s images have been described in myriad variations, but never before within the context of the social relevance of his art. With his interpretation of the claustrophobic, nightmarish aspects of Giger’s art, Grof allows for a new, more profound understanding of the overall work.

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Our Year in Review

David Rogers, Debbie McFarland, Deborah Snyder, Linda Sperling, Graciela Ruiz, Melissa Guthrie

Dear friends around the planet,

Thank you for your continued support of our books and extraordinary authors. It was a banner year for the press with the release of two award winning titles and the addition of several creative people to our team. Highlights of 2013 include the launch of Mystic Chemist: The Life of Albert Hofmann on the 70th anniversary of his discovery of LSD at the Psychedelic Science conference in Oakland, California in April. See our blog to watch the authors’ keynote speech. In August we welcomed renowned British environmentalist, Tony Juniper for the American launch of his ground-breaking book, What Has Nature Ever Done for Us? Of special note was the Bioeconomics Colloquium held in July at Synergia Ranch where Tony was joined by two of our other authors, all of whom gave passionate and inspiring talks concerning the future of our planet. Videocastsof the meeting are on our website. Synergetic Press exhibited in October at the Frankfurt Book Fair where we met with forthcoming authors, translators and publishing partners. We are anticipating an exciting 2014, with the release of  mind-enhancing titles by Mark Nelson and Christian Schwägerl, among others; and the return of Tony Juniper for appearances in New York and Washington D.C. in April.

Best to all for the New Year!

Deborah Parrish Snyder, Publisher

Mystic Chemist Wins Best Biography!

Mystic Chemist: The Life of Albert Hofmann and His Discovery of LSD takes you into the life of one of the most famous chemists of the 20th century. The pages are filled with many rare, historical photographs, and works of art such as In the Land of Retinal Delight by Robert Williams above (courtesy Tony Shafrazi Gallery, NYC) some of which can be seen in the book trailer below. 

Tony Juniper Wins Gold

Tony Juniper

What Has Nature Ever Done for Us? Wins Gold in Independent Publisher’s Living Now Book Awards.

Tony Juniper asserts that we think everything nature does for us — providing water, pollinating plant

s, generating oxygen, recycling miracles in the soil and much more — is free, but it isn’t. Its economic value can, and has been, measured. Upon realizing what that value truly is, we can stop treating our natural systems in a destructive manner. 

Welcome Our New Chief Operating Officer, David Rogers

David’s professional experience has encompassed Publishing, Media Production, Entrepreneurial Enterprise, National Campaign Politics, and Public Service. We are delighted to have him on our team.
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MYSTIC CHEMIST Wins “Best Biography”

MysticChemistMystic Chemist: The Life of Albert Hofmann and His Discovery of LSD  was awarded “Best Biography” at the New Mexico-Arizona 2013 Book awards! Click here for the full list of winners.

Only a few discoveries of the 20th century have had such crucial and meaningful influences on science, society and culture as LSD. This mysterious and extremely potent substance causes profound changes of consciousness in doses of millionths of a gram. Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann first experienced its remarkable effects during a self-experiment with Lysergic Acid Diethylamide in 1943 at Sandoz Laboratory in Basel. It changed his life deeply, as it also has the lives of millions around the world.  His bicycle ride during this first LSD trip became legendary.

The best compendium of the birth and transformative effect of one of the greatest discoveries ever made.

– Alex Grey, Visionary Artist

A marvelous job of pulling together documentation and commentary, not only about Hofmann and LSD but also the socio-cultural and political upheavals of the 1960s, during which LSD and all mind-expanding drugs played an enormous role.

– Ralph Metzner, PhD

This book covers everything of importance in the scientific, social, spiritual and artistic realms that resulted from his epochal discovery.

– Michael Horowitz, psychoactive drug historian,
editor of works by Aldous Huxley and Timothy Leary

As psychedelic research is dramatically expanding, Albert’s life journey deserves to become more widely known. There is much to learn from this book and from Albert’s example.

– Rick Doblin, PhD, founder and executive director,
Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS)

A fascinating read and a highly recommended addition to academic, and community library 20th Century Biography collections.

– James A. Cox, Midwest Book Review

 

 

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Tony Juniper at Bioeconomics Colloquium

Tony Juniper, a former Green Party candidate in England, exec at Friends of the Earth, and Ecological Adviser to HRH The Prince of Wales, had each audience member focused whole-heartedly upon the concrete examples drawn from his new book and demonstrating exactly what Nature does for us.

But the examples only illustrated the point that we can learn to see what is in Nature now, and how to value those ‘services’ appropriately. Juniper cleverly develops a language that speaks to the bottom-line of big capitalism and inspired us all to realize, in a constructive manner, that intersection between economics and ecology that is so crucial to understanding and transforming unhealthy entrepreneurial and organizational practices.

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Tony Juniper Interview on Santa Fe Radio Cafe

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Writer and environmental campaigner Tony Juniper joined Mary Charlotte on Monday, July 22, 2013 at the Santa Fe Radio Cafe to discuss his new book What Has Nature Ever Done For Us? How Money Really Does Grow On Trees

Listen to Podcast 

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Tony Juniper on Diane Rehm Show

Environmental Outlook: “What Has Nature Ever Done For Us?” By Tony Juniper

Economic prosperity and conserving the environment is often seen as being in conflict — to get the former, you have to sacrifice the latter. But there’s a growing body of research that suggests when we don’t protect nature, short term economic gains may result in long term losses. In his new book, leading British environmentalist Tony Juniper says that’s because the things nature provides us, that we tend to think of as free, has a monetary value that can be measured. And it’s time for companies and governments to start accounting for it when doing business. For this month’s Environmental Outlook, Diane talks with Tony Juniper about his new book, “What Has Nature Ever Done for Us? How Money Really Does Grow on Trees.”

Guests

Tony-Juniper

Tony Juniper

author of What Has Nature Ever Done For Us? How Money Really Does Grow On Trees. He is the sustainability adviser to Prince Charles, fellow at the University of Cambridge Program for Sustainability Leadership and the former director of Friends of the Earth.

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PODCAST TRANSCRIPT

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From the New York Times: How psychedelic drugs can help patients face death

Recent news from The New York Times examining current research on psilocybin and its ability to reduce patient anxiety about facing death.

The article talks about people experiencing cancer, and the way in which psychedelic experiences can calm a person’s fear about death and help them to appreciate the time they have left.

Read the full article.

 

It also describes some of the early research into psychedelics and how these scientists are trying to separate their work from the shadow of the 1960’s in order to be taken more seriously by the medical world in exploring the therapeutic benefits of these substances.

Ram Dass and Ralph Metzner’s Birth of a Psychedelic Culture details the beginning of this movement that examines the therapeutic benefits of psychedelics and challenges the stigma of these substances from the 1960’s.

“After transcendent experiences, people often have much less fear of death,” Griffiths says. Fourteen months after participating in a psilocybin study that was published in The Journal of Psychopharmacology last year, 94 percent of subjects said that it was one of the five most meaningful experiences of their lives; 39 percent said that it was the most meaningful experience.

Read the full article.

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Psychedelics, Healing and the Expansion of Consciousness

Michael Bogenschutz, Dr. Ralph Metzner & Dr. George Greer Presented at the Colloquium

 

On March 20th, Synergetic Press hosted “Frontiers of the Future,” a colloquium on Psychedelics, Healing and Expansion of Consciousness featuring presentations and discussions with pioneers in these fields.

Dr. Ralph Metzner

The evening began with a presentation from George Greer, Co-founder and Medical Director of the Heffter Research Institute. He spoke about psilocybin research that Heffter is supporting and how psilocybin can be used for cancer anxiety treatment.

Michael Bogenschutz, Professor of Psychiatry at UNM followed Greer talking about current psilocybin-alcoholism research happening at UNM.

The program was moderated by Dr. Robert Weisz, a clinical psychologist, consultant, and life coach in private practice. 

Tonight we were looking at the mysterious phenomenon of healing and change and the administration of certain substances that can expand awareness and induce deep experiences,” Weisz said.

Dr. Paulo Barbosa, Professor of Scientific Methods and Mental Health, Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz, Bahia, Brazil gave a presentation on the effects of Ayahuasca on health. He spoke about the health benefits of ayahuasca for people experiencing alcohol/drug-related problems.

Dr. Ralph Metzner culminated the presentations with a talk on the expansion of consciousness and the use of psychedelics for the purpose of healing.

Metzner spoke about consciousness expansion that occurs in our everyday lives. Each morning when you wake up, your consciousness expands as you come out of your dream state and back into reality, he said.

Dinner and a Discussion with the Speakers

He spoke about the need to find terminology, other than “psychedelics” to describe these substances and the experience of consciousness expansion.”These changes in consciousness that happen call into question your entire worldview,” Metzner said. It’s difficult to find a word to describe that experience.

“Psychedelics” is a term that has been identified in popular culture with one specific purpose, but Metzner says there are many different experiences one can have with these substances. “The therapeutic possibilities of consciousness expansion cannot be overestimated,” Metzner said in his talk.

Following the presentations, a dinner and panel discussion was held where the speakers responded to questions from the audience. Food was prepared by Joe’s Diner in Santa Fe.

It’s one of the ingredients in a rather huge and mysterious process of healing and change. We want to keep in mind that there are no absolute answers to these questions but there are a lot of interesting questions to be asked,” Weisz said.

(Photos and Video courtesy of Gay Dillingham)

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