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Mind States II:
Address to Mind States Conference II
Berkeley, California
by Albert Hofmann
May 25, 2001
Citation:   Hofmann, Albert. "Address to Mind States Conference II, Berkeley, California, May 2001" Read by Myron Stolaroff at Mindstates II. May 25 2001.
Address to Mind States Conference II, Berkeley, California, May 2001
Dear Friends, My dear friend Myron Stolaroff informed me about your conference Mind States II, and asked me if I would say some words to this meeting. Being a chemist and natural scientist, I became interested at the very beginning of my philosophical thinking in the problem between the relationship between the material and the spiritual world.

The spiritual and the material world are often regarded to exist as two separate realms, even to be existentially contradictory. But the opposite is true; they are complementary, forming the all-embracing human reality.

The material world is the topic of natural science research. Deep insights were provided into the macrocosmos of the galaxies as into the microcosms of the atoms and into the material and energetic mechanisms of the life processes.

This knowledge formed the basis for the development of the technical industrial civilization. It would be difficult to accept that this was the true role of the natural sciences, namely to provide us with the comfort of the industrial society, including the sciences, namely to provide us with the comfort of the industrial society, including the catastrophic ecological and social problems. I believe that the true, evolutionary value and importance of the natural sciences in the history of mankind consists in providing deep spiritual insights into the material cosmos, into the riddle and wonder of creation.

The Creator does not speak with words to His creatures. As Paracelsus, the great natural scientist, philosopher, and physician of the renaissance said: The Creation is the book, written by the finger of God, in which we should learn to read."

The chemical and physical mechanisms of life processes are described -- not explained -- by natural scientific investigations. If these investigations are meditated upon, they will fulfill us with astonishment and awe.

As an example, take the elucidation of the process of seeing. It shows that in the outer world no colors exist; that the colored picture of the world is formed inside, on an inner screen, in the consciousness of the individual. Every individual bears inside his self made, private picture of the world. The Creator used a trick: letting us experience different lengths of electromagnetic light waves as different colors, in order that we may enjoy the beauty of a colored world.

Natural science has disclosed innumerable examples of such tricks which prove that the Creation is designed to make mankind happy. In a meditative state of mind we become conscious of this grace.

Looking over the top of my typewriter on a meadow strewn with yellow flowers, I send cordial regards and best wishes for a joyous and fruitful meeting.


(Signed) Albert Hofmann