Mon, 10 June 2019
How do psychedelics play into the lives of entrepreneurs? Today we dive deep into belief systems, religion, consciousness and all that good philosophical magic.
Tune in for a very human discussion on what it means to strip away some of your certainties and what you can learn in the process.
Who better to talk about this than Ryan, who in his single minded and systematic pursuit of truth ended up shedding a dogmatic upbringing as well as a religious career.
This interview and associated content is in no way an endorsement or recommendation that anyone should do any illegal drugs — there is nothing you cannot achieve or go do on your own through meditation or spiritual practices.
Questioning everything [:] Ryan has a history of questioning the established structures around him:
1. He questioned the 9 to 5 workday train and became an entrepreneur
2. He questioned his religion in phase 1 and started a lifelong spiritual journey
[8:00] Phase 2 of his spiritual quest has been centered around questioning reality, he now finds himself in the midst of a spiritual awakening.
Losing my religion [8:36] Losing one’s religion the way Ryan did, cognizantly and rationally, is profoundly traumatic. It requires a systematic breaking away from brutish indoctrination along with everything from which you drew meaning. All of your certainties, absolutes and reassurances. Imagine the pain of ripping from your source of truth, hope, value, worth, connection, community, home and language. The foundation of your entire understanding of life.
He then went through what he believes to be a necessary part of healing, angry atheism.
In the past year, Ryan produced a Documentary — which he has yet to release to the public — called Losing My Religion. In the opening scene Ryan — having never even held a cigarette in his hand — does 4 grams of psilocybin mushrooms.
Who can you turn to? [11:56] After stripping away so much of himself and his old life, Ryan found himself in a spiritual void. But he hear the many accounts of trusted sources that assured their most profound spiritual experiences came from mushrooms.
His first and only [to-date] trip was both a good, and bad trip during which he had never more intensely wanted to go to church. It was also an incredible spiritual journey which led to a deeper understanding of why he broke away from his religion and concurrently, being drawn back into certain elements of it.
It is still an experience he is unpacking but left him with this indelible sense of falling in love with what he believes is true.
[15:24] THIS IS ALL A JOKE, DON’T DO DRUGS.
The decline of religion [17:34] What is this all for— Making money, getting fit, doing anything at all — if the end result is simply death? Ryan now believes that everything we do is constantly changing, growing and evolving consciousness as a comprehensive whole.
Taken back into it’s historically relevant context, religion was the expression of our innermost need to understand our position in the universe. It made sense at the time, as a way to explains our greater purpose as well as the things we didn’t have the technical means to grasp.
As time passes and understanding of the universe grows, the language and means with which we explain it needs to be adapted as well: religion has taken us as far is it could.
The conversation is starting to change and it’s time to move into a spiritual phase shift.
The first trip [19:30] Ryan’s brain began playing every thought he’d ever had, to the point of overwhelm, until he got to the end of the file folder, and then, for the first time ever he felt like he was himself — not the voice in his head he’d always thought he was, but his true self — it was the most freeing, expansive and joyful experience ever.
He now understands he should have listened, he should have stopped when things were good, but he pushed further and took another gram.
And so for 30 minutes of absolute terror, he felt the infinity of time while clawing at the gates of Hell, with no way out.
After that ordeal, he got a glimpse of the world as a whole. A magnificent epiphany of the grand design, his part to play in it as well as that of every other being in existence.
Every choice we make, every person we talk to or play a role in the developing theater of consciousness.
This is what drove his desire to go back to church: everyone plays a part and we’re all riding the same wave.
Getting to the bad place [24:38] Ryan had that beautiful first experience, why did he push it further? Does he tend to go too far?
Yes, and the pattern is identifiable as an almost unhealthy addiction to growth, the emotional attachment to breaking the next barrier, the next unlocked secret, as opposed to being in the present.
Business and psychedelics [26:18] After selling his company for a hefty sum, Ryan found that the money he thought would bring him happiness simply did not. What’s the solution then, make more money? How depressingly tedious...
Cue the MDMA and he realised that he had always thought he was defective or broken in some way, and had been looking for validation from outside sources.
In terms of business it translated to a radical change in perspective, from following systems and ideas — hustles if you will — that would profit him, make him money, to a more creative and generous approach: what do I want to bring to the world, what value can I add?
From the take mentality to the give mentality: what are you giving to the world?
He also understood 2 important things:
1. He can wait for the right opportunity.
2. He doesn’t have to serve the customer that isn’t a right fit just because they have deep pockets.
The inner child [33:12] For a lot of entrepreneurs, their entire life has been driven by the 10,12,15 year old who suffered trauma. We all have stories in our past that are driving our behaviour.
It really doesn’t have to be crazy trauma to have an impact in adult life, but it does need to be addressed and unknotted in order to relearn to have fun and be happy.
It’s hard to be happy when you’re in survival mode.
Building or creating? [46:15] Ryan advises entrepreneurs, and has helped hundreds of them make their first million. The ones that do the best are systematically the ones that create something.
Everyone wants the formula, and Ryan has it, but it’ll never work unless you create... It’ll all just be price wars and review wars.
Capitalism [47:01] Capitalism is the system through which we create things (it’s not the only one through which good ideas come from) but it’s the only system where bad ideas lose
We’re all on the same team. We’re all just fighting about how to get there.
But we won’t get there with less freedom, we’ll get there with more.
Mentioned in this episode