“I believe that mycelium is the neurological network of nature. Interlacing mosaics of mycelium infuse habitats with information-sharing membranes. These membranes are aware, react to change, and collectively have the long-term health of the host environment in mind. The mycelium stays in constant molecular communication with its environment, devising diverse enzymatic and chemical responses to complex challenges.” ― Guru Stamets
“Smoke grass. Yass. Yass. Shake ass.” ― Allan Ginsberg
Gradually the furniture receded back into its normal position. On the floor. Not in the air. The glossolalic priest who had delivered Ulfer spiritual knowledge vanished in mid-air meditation. The psychedelic chair that had been swiveling in orbit about his mystical head returned to the normal catatonia of the panpsychic object world. In other words, the artifacts of the room that had been emboldened by the mushrooms were now motionless in Ulfer’s vision. Mysticism is a temporary state. Though its insights are never forgotten, the illusions of life must necessarily reassert themselves. If we were aware that every chair or paperweight or shelf or lightswitch harbored a consciousness within, existence would be an unending hell. Imagine the endless pain of knowing that a fork has seen the inside of your mouth. Thus, these objects normally conceal their inner lives by remaining stationary when observed. Only those capable of tapping into the vibrational frequencies of the mycelial-lining of the universe, whether by intrinsic mystical talent or by the regular crystal contact, can catch insights into the consciousness of matter.
Once the plant medicine had faded and the shaman departed, every object in the universe obscured its inner consciousness in the bold stare of unmoved upholstery. Ecstatic Rapture by Desert Dwellers came on Spotify and filled the room with an oscillating OM overlaying the sound of water trickling over sitar strings. Even though he was no longer technically high, Ulfer heard the music anew through the afterglow of the Ayuhuasca. Eyes wide in wonder Ulfer smiled with pure ecstasy, hearing every sound warble through him like a new pulse and thought to himself, “Holy fuck this album is like if kazoo and a didgeridoo had a child and baptized it in the Ganges river.”
The conversation regarding the status of gum that Ulfer had left when he sunk in spiritual reverie in the hot tub, seemed to have not yet reached a resolution.
Drawing her arms up into full standing lotus tree Thoriatober Tillurch said to Uuot Acustramond, “Dude, ok. Can we compromise that if you swallow gum then it counts as food?”
“UH, NO,” exclaimed Thoriatober, spreading his legs in earth embrace posture, “that would mean that if I picked up something that is, like, obviously food, like an apple, chewed it, and then spit it back up before swallowing it that would mean it wasn’t food. But everyone agrees that an apple is food and DON’T try to argue it isn’t so you can keep your bullshit line of argumentation going, this isn’t seventh grade philosophy club. So no. Gum is not fucking food.”
“You guys are all wrong,” interjected Thermal Mountain, “you are both trying to come up with purely objective criteria without taking intentionality into account. It’s not about whether the chewing happens or the swallowing, but whether or not the person ingesting it believes they are eating food, like, whether the subject regards the object as food, like whether they intend to be eating food when they are chewing gum. Subjectivity, man. Like, for example, when I, like, chew a pen when I’m thinking, I put it into my mouth and my incisors are moving but I’m not eating it. Cause I’m not regarding it as food. So like even that time when I swallowed my henna pen when I was trying to bite the cap off—and by the way that was a radical high, like a fucking amazing high–but it was not food just caused I chewed it. Cause I didn’t intend it to be. Everything is subjective man. This is why I have a philosophy degree and you don’t.”
“Wait, what the fuck,” said Uoot, “so like if I don’t intend to chew and swallow an apple as food but for, like, some other reason which is dumb cause I don’t know why you would fucking chew and swallow an apple for any other reason that you’re like thinking it’s food—then it wouldn’t be food?Oh, I got it. So if I had an apple on my pen when I thought I was chewing the pen but I accidentally chewed the apple and then swallowed it–again accidentally, dude–so that I thought I had chewed and accidentally swallowed a pen but it was an apple and my body extracted nutritional value from that you’re saying it wouldn’t be food because the intentionality wasn’t there?”
“Duuuuude,” said Thoriatober, “So when we swallow edibles to get high are they food? Because our intention is to get high not, like, eat food. But brownies are sill, like, objectively food. It’s a situation in which both subjectivity and objectivity are happening at the same time.”
“Ohhhhhh shittt,” said Uoot. A weighty silence fell over the group for a solid minute until Ulfer, previously an observer and not participant to the conversation, suddenly said with shamanic intensity:
“They are mind food.”
“Everything is mind food,” said Thoriatober.
The gnomes nodded with solemnity of a Zen Buddhist who had suddenly understood his master teacher’s riddle after sitting in place for 200 years until moss grew on his head.
“But…so what is gum?”
Meanwhile, above ground the Church garden was being carefully tended by the feminine touch of Chastity. Without children of her own, Chastity fulfilled redirected the motherly impulse of her womanhood into growing flowers. She beamed with matronly warmth upon the seedlings of sunflowers, lavenders, and all other variety of wall-paper acceptable flora. Wasn’t it a wonderful thing, thought Chastity, that she could contribute to the house of God? How generous was HIS love that he allowed women this gift of adorning HIS house? HE had already provided enough in bestowing her the joy of listening in quiet, cheerful silence to the holy writ and sermons of patriarchs ancient and modern!
But so much did the Lord love women that he gave them tasks to perform for men. There wasn’t only listening to men preach but baking and gardening for men and their children! And in pleasing God’s holy servants, Chastity was pleasing the supreme man Elohim and the planets filled with his goddess wives. How wonderful was the abiding and overflowing Love of the Lord. Chastity beamed as she imagined Breedum Young and his forty wives strolling through sunflowers—her sunflowers—each of which was precisely 4 feet high and separated by a perfect distance of six inches from the others another, all standing in rigid repetition in their slim smooth stalks, none of which had a hint of nature’s wanton tendencies in the form of stray leaves, bulbous knobs, or uneven growth. It would be an image of piously plastic perfection as beautiful as a 10,000 dollar painting in a LDS bookstore.
Meanwhile, amidst the Church graveyard, the Gnomes attend to a little bit of gardening of their own…
Yes, in-between Chastity’s bouts of weed-plucking, seed planting, and tendril-trimming, the denizens of the deep would make a dash to the surface where they secured the legacy of plant medicine by embedding the next generation of seedlings in the tender soil above those who rest in peace.
Sometimes Chastity would stroll through the gardens, silently humming her favorite LDS hymn “And Then Did He Turn the Sinners Black,” and would halt to speculate on how strangely large and tall some of the weeds among the graves were and how, after they reached a certain a height, they would always abruptly disappear from the scenery of overgrowth amidst the graves.
Just when Chastity was sure that she had spotted a small red cone and bulbous nose and bearded beady-eyed face peering at her amidst the tall grasses, it would vanish. But Chastity didn’t believe in Gnomes or fairies or any other superstitious entities that bedecked the shelves of New Age kitsch shops. No, Chastity knew better than to believe that magic happened outside the context of LDS Church.
As for the Gnomes, they didn’t believe in magic either, which is why they laughed at ghost bread and Joseph Smith’s angels and the people who kneeled to ask for stuff from a man with a beard. Mystical effects were scientific. The cosmos produced verifiable data since it was a gigantic organism, a single consciousness that transmitted valid, empirical signals. After all, Guru Stamets said so and he was a mycobiologist.
“I see the mycelium as the Earth’s natural Internet, a consciousness with which we might be able to communicate. Through cross-species interfacing, we may one day exchange information with these sentient cellular networks. Because these externalized neurological nets sense any impression upon them, from footsteps to falling tree branches, they could relay enormous amounts of data regarding the movements of all organisms through the landscape.” ― Guru Stamets
Mystical data is generated every time a soul comes into contact with the membranes of the cosmic-consciousness through mushrooms (or crystals), both of which produce measurable changes in bodily and psychic states. For example, if one tuned oneself to the proper frequencies through regular meditation, chanting, plant medicine, avoiding mango in the off-cyles of the moon in accordance with ayurvedic dieting, and by standing in the vicinity of crystals and other universe-sensitive structures or portals (provided they were placed in the proper orientation) then one could levitate or teleport. This wasn’t a miracle. It was the actuation of the hidden potentiality of the universe.
Mormons pray for miracles. Meditators exist under different terms. Uoot, for one, levitated all the time. With nothing more than a mind utterly bereft of self-limitation, all Uoot had to do was pluck a bud from the spirit-plant and inhale until filled with a sensation of cotton-ball lightness that assured him he was levitating. And if he wanted to teleport, all he had to do was close his eyes.
Thus, whenever Uoot was glimpsed in his gardening capacity by Chastity, he would immediately draw a deep breath from the plants and slap his hands together above his head in half-tree-lotus pose. As he drew his hands in, Uoot summoned positivity to his interior by imagining a small white ball of warm light swelling to infinity from within his chest until he was suddenly relocated to his desired location, whether that be the vegan aisle of the grocery store or into the heart of Gnome Dome when his discovery by Chastity was imminent.
Thus, with a heart open to love, a mind open to the plants, and the proper spinal alignment for chakra flow, Uoot would be gone in a flash before Chastity had time to doubt her eyes.
The next stop after teleporting into the Dome would be to transfer one’s gatherings to the sacred medicine space where they would be suspended in waiting until they were ritually prepared by a shaman and transferred to ceremony space for spiritual induction.
In other words, Uoot hung some of the weed on the wall. He also rolled a joint, exhaling from his third eye.
He then joined some of his sistren and brethren at a hookah pipe.
“Hey Uoot,” said Crangraw Pretentia, “Did you hear about Ulfer’s spiritual journal?”
“What? Fuck no. When did that happen?” replied Uoot.
“Uh, like right now when I was floating in the hot tub,” replied Ulfer.
“Oh…I just thought you drowned.”
“….and you didn’t fucking do anything about that?”
“Uhh….I guess not?” said Uoot, pulling in a long drag from the hookah and gaping like a fish, his short term memory already evaporating into vacancy.
“Okay, uh, then fuck you man,” said Ulfer, “I’ll remember that the next time you’re dead. Then watch me do nothing about it.”
“Oh yeah?” scoffed Uoot.
“Yeah. Nothing. If I find you dead. I will do nothing.”
“You can’t do shit anyway when someone is dead. You can only do something when they are about to be dead,” yelled Thoriatober, red-eyes bursting out of meditation, “You guys are fucking idiots.”
“In any case,” said Uticia Fuctus, “Ulfer’s spiritual journey might have disclosed the location of the next choosing.”
“What?!” yelled Thermal Mountain, “but that was his first time tripping!”
“Yeah, but he was tripping balls. Don’t create a hierarchy man. Anyone can have access to cosmic vision anytime. Normies can take shrooms 145,342 times and never have anything more than an anxiety attack about whether or not their parent’s neighbors will know they’re high. It’s because they’ve brought nothing to the trip but a credit card and a suburban basement. Thermal’s first trip she fucking literally heard Paul Stamets talking. Like she fucking comprehended the entire wisdom of the mycelium complex instantly. It’s about what you bring to to it. I mean…think about it …it’s like black holes. They’re like condensed information. Infinite knowledge in a speck so small that it’s not even anywhere, that it collapses even time into a zero point. Mycelia knowledge is just like that. A superfucking nova of hypercondensed God-knowledge. The knowledge of a century can be absorbed in the span of a mouse’s heartbeat.” Uticia sighed deeply, satisfied with the profundity of her explanation.
“Alright? What’s your proof?” demanded Uoot.
“The drawing” uttered Narwhell Upthorp.
“What do you mean the drawing?”
“Ulfer triangulated the position of every child that has ever been captured,” said Jardley Yarvis, “He predicted the location where the Gnomsen shall gather tonight.”
“Yeah,” said Ulfer, “after I emerged from the hot tub, I just heard Linda’s voice saying draw…draw…and I felt within me this strange need to approach the easel and withdraw a crayon from the art stand, a red crayon. I felt the warmth of Linda inside me compelling me. So I raised the crayon perpendicular to the canvas and pressed its waxen nub to the blank canvas…”
“…and produced this.”
“Did you also move the crayon?” asked Thermal.
A long pause hovered in the air.
“Ok, so what does it mean?” asked Uoot.
“What?” said Ulfer, eyes glittering with milky wonder, “is it’s meaning not clear? The Gnomsen are clearly going to appear in the bathroom beneath the Church. That is the only possibility derivable from the data. From there they will perform the CHOOSING and designate a spiritual advisee to receive their sacred blessing and knowledge of how to release the child captives. This is the wisdom imparted unto me by plant medicine.”
“This is the wisdom,” chanted the other gnomes simultaneously.
Uoot chanted too, but secretly his heart was lacerated by envy. Why had Ulfer been gifted with a vision of where the next CHOOSING would take place? In his first encounter with a glossolalic alien priest Ulfer had seen Linda?! On the outside Uoot may have looked upon the world with a beady-eyed, mouthless waist-beard gaze, but inside his pointy red hat, his mind plotted a means to usurp Ulfer’s spotlight and once again assert himself as premier psychonaut of the best free love colony to have ever been built under a church.
As for the other Gnomes, each resumed their own activity in preparation for the coming night, all in hopes of appeasing the Gnomsen so much that they would be chosen at the upcoming gathering.
Still others engaged in expressionist painting, adult activities in the orgy room, flower arranging, and other mind-expansionist activities appropriate to an upcoming revelation about how to free children entrapped in a priestly pleasure vault beneath a Church basement.
Uticia began playing “Your Love is Infinite Oh Gnomsen” on the electric guitar, which clashed with the Dome’s perpetual ambiance of Indian Trap music, producing a series of disordered sounds definitely not conducive to having a good trip.
“AH WHAT THE SHIT FUCK. GODDDDD DAMN. FUCK SHIT. WHAT. AHHH,” screamed Xexy pacing back and forth in paranoia, “THERE ARE ANTS LIVING IN THE ELECTRIC WIRES. CAN YOU HEAR THEM? I HEAR THEM. MARCHING MARCHING BY THE THOUSANDS. JOHNNY COME MARCHING HOME–THAT’S WHAT HE THINKS. BUT JOHNNY’S NEVER COMING MARCHING HOME BECAUSE’S HE’S PLAYING THE VIOLIN. PLAY THE VIOLIN JOHNNY. PLAY IT FOREVER. THAT’S WHAT SHE TELLS HIM. JOHNNY CONTROLS THE ANTS. HE SENDS THEM HERE TO COLLECT INTELLIGENCE ON THE PLANTS. OH SHIT. THE ANTS ARE GONNA’ TELL THE COPS. THEY’RE GONNA’ TELL THE COPS I HAVE WEED. SHIT. FUCK. FUCK.”
“Oh shit man, can someone turn off the trap music? Xexy is having another freak out,” said Jardley.
“Uh, no. You know we can’t turn that shit off. It’s coming out of the walls,” said Jardley.
“it’s coming out of speakers in the walls, dude. There’s got to be a way of turning the speakers off,” replied Thermal.
Xexy continued to whirl about in distress at the cacophony.
“Ok, so then where is the switch?”
“I dunno’. We’ve never turned the speakers off. Like they’ve literally never been off.”
“Okay…so then who turned them on? Somebody must have turned them on. They couldn’t have always been here.”
“Come to think of it…do you ever remember the Dome not existing?”
“Shit, no. And I remember shit that happened months ago.”
Jardley took a deep gulp of cannabis suspended in water droplets. Breathing out in a creaking exhalation, his eyes gradually widened.
“Dude….I think that person is dead.”
“The person who put the music on. I think they’re dead.”
“OH, well. Fuck. I guess the music’s just gonna’ be on forever then.”
Meanwhile, Uoot’s jealous rage continued to sir, even as the effects of the MDMA he had popped compelled him to believe a chair was his best friend. Why even wait for the Gnomsen to perform the choosing, he thought, when he, Uoot, already knew the location of the captive children? Ulfer may have been gifted with the spiritual vision that allowed him to triangulate the location of the captured children and render the information in artistic representation, but it was UOOT who would use that knowledge to his advantage. Ulfer may have been gifted with a breakthrough on his first encounter with advanced plant medicine, but it was UOOT who had the power to teleport to the known locations of children thanks to his faithful consumption of the entirety of Deepak Chopra‘s podcast series on manipulating the quantum constellation that is spacetime through the willed manipulation of quantum entanglement frameworks in transcendental meditation. That was it! While everyone else was busy orgying, flower arranging, reiki healing, and positivity chanting, Uoot would manipulate the space-time continuum to instantly transport to the location of the captured the children and liberate them on the spot so that, even if the Gnomsen chose Ulfer as child-liberator, there would be no children to liberate. They would already be running free before Ulfer arrived, sprinting across the alternative medicine garden, giggling in the delight of newly won freedom as their basement-encased bodies made first contact with the sunlight! Why, he would liberate so many children from the priest’s capture chambers that he would have a veritable army of newly created Gnomes next time a vegan liberation raid was made on the church community center.
With that thought, Uoot laughed violently in the center of the den, thus drawing the attention of every gnome to his form.
“Don’t look at me,” he said before dashing into the bathroom.
“Oh man I really hope he doesn’t look in the mirror high,” muttered Jardley.
“Yeah. When I looked at my own face high on DMT in the mirror, I saw a Tetris block. Like one of the Tetris blocks that doesn’t fit. Like the kind that the second it starts dropping down your screen gives you anxiety. And then I realized. And then my heart started racing cause I was like…oh God where am I gonna’ fit where am I gonna’ fit. I’m running out of time because I don’t even know where the top and the bottom of the screen are. Then I realized that all of life is like a fucking Tetris game. You can’t control the pieces that come at you, you can just try to turn them and hope they fit in, but not everything’s gonna’ fit in…”
While I could gift you, dear reader, with a continued look at this conversation, I know that you are dying to know what Uoot did in the bathroom.
Once in the privacy of a gender-neutral restroom, Uoot slapped his hands together, raised them above his head, and with a maniacally meditative cackle remembered how Deepak Chopra said that distances didn’t matter in quantum mechanics because of quantum entanglement. Through an action to one particle, its counterpart was instantly adjusted even if the distance extended across the entire mycelia network of the universe. Since consciousness is an energy and all particles have counterparts, all one has to do to teleport is to effect the mass of one’s counter-particles on the other side of the galaxy by imparting an antithetical energy to their particle in present and immediate space-time. Thus, by transferring the energy of his essence from one point to another, Uoot was immediately teleported from the interior of the Gnome’s bathroom to the inside of one of the child cages in the basement in priestly pleasure grounds!
“Greetings child. I am your liberator. Follow me and be no longer captive to the hypocritical whims of clerisy…”
“Oh…..wait…I can teleport in here but you can’t teleport out….fuck.”
“and the cage doesn’t open from the inside…WAIT. I CAN JUST TELEPORT OUTSIDE AND OPEN IT!”
“Wait…I don’t have the key….Fuck.”