Tricky Fish Episode 7 – The One About Stoned Apes

Tricky Fish Episode 7 – The One About Stoned Apes

Tricky Fish
Image ©2021 by Tricky Fish Podcast, all rights reserved.

In this episode, we talk about the Stoned Ape Theory with regards to human evolution.

Helpful Links (This is not the original video we used, as that one disappeared, but this is one that is close)


Announcer: Welcome to Tricky Fish! A conversation between a Gen X dad and his millennial daughter. Here’s your hosts, Ian and Rhiannon!

I: Hello, if you have listened to us all along, welcome back. If you are listening to us for the first time, welcome. We hope that you will like what you hear and will continue to listen to us. 

R: We’re glad you’re here!

I: Yes. So obviously I’m Ian. 

R: And I’m… your worst nightmare. 

I: I’m Batman. No- laughs- All right. 

R: I’m Rhiannon though, if that matters. 

I: Okay. I just want to make sure everybody’s clear who’s who. Okay,

R: Because we sound alike and look alike.

I: Yeah, right. So have you ever heard of something called the stoned ape theory?

R: I vaguely remember Paul talking about it. So like, I kind of know what it is, but I’m not educated on it, or like, very familiar with it no.

I: All right, well, I’m gonna feed you baby bird. But first, just real quick, a content warning, we are going to be talking about psychedelic drugs, psychedelic drug usage and human evolution. So if drugs is not something that you can handle listening to feel free to bow out, we won’t hold it against you. 

R: Totally get it. 

I: And yeah, and check out other episodes, come back for the next episode or whatever. The other thing that I also want to address is that we are both aware of the historic negative impact on communities of color with regards to drug usage, the war on drugs, that sort of thing. And this is not an episode that will touch on that. We will do a future episode about that but for this episode, we are just talking about human evolution-

R: Enlightenment, spiritual growth, those kinds of things. 

I: Exactly. So if you are hoping to hear that it’s not gonna happen in this episode, but like I said, we will definitely do an episode on it. Because we definitely think that’s something that’s important that we need to talk about. 

R: Mhm.

I: Alright, so; stoned ape theory. So there was a dude named Terence Kemp McKenna, who was an American ethnobotanist and mystic who advocated for the responsible use of naturally occurring psychedelic plants.

R: I love that his official title was a mystic. I love that.

I: Well, actually, he was considered the Timothy Leary of the 90’s. Timothy Leary for those who don’t know, he was the one that back in the 60’s was talking about “Tune In, Tune Out” doing LSD, so mind altering substances, but this dude wrote a book- I mean McKenna, not Leary. So McKenna wrote a book, I believe it came out in 1970’s. Don’t quote me on that, but I really think that’s when I came out.

R: On a side note, somebody told me that the younger generation has been referring to people born in the 90’s, born in the late 1900’s. 

I: -laughs-

And I’m angry about it. 

I: That’s not wrong.

R: Because it’s not wrong. I was born in ‘93. But not the late 1900’s, oh my god!

I: -laughs- 

R: Anyway, in the late mid to late 1900s, this book was released. 

I: Yes. And it was called, Food of the Gods. And in this book, McKenna had proposed that the reason for the transformation from humans’ early ancestors, which was Homo erectus to the species, Homo sapiens, which is what we are, yeah. 

R: -laughing- erectus.

Both: -laughs- 

I: Yes, so the reason for this mainly had to do with the addition of psychedelic mushrooms like psilocybin into their diet. And I do have part of a clip from I believe it’s McKenna- 

R: School movie day time! Imagine all the lights turning off, your teacher wheeling in a cart with a giant box TV. 

I: Yeah. 

R: It’s movie day, class.

I: It’s movie day, class. Alright, so I’m just gonna play. I’m not gonna play the whole thing, because it’s like 18 minutes and some odd seconds. I will include a link to the video in the show notes. 

R: And on Twitter.

I: And on Twitter. So if you want to check it out, I will totally give you that you guys can check it out. But I just want to play this part from Terence McKenna.

Video: “And here is my answer to this riddle. Where did human consciousness come from? It begins like this. In that foraging phase, where we were testing all kinds of plants on the grassland, small amounts of Psilocybin mushrooms would have naturally been eaten in the process of eating corn and things like that. I personally have seen baboons in Kenya, investigating cow patties on the savanna because they know that bug pupa will be under the cow patties. So the cow patties are already set up as vectors for possible sources of nutrition. So there is no question that these proto-hominids would have eaten Psilocybin in small amounts. And by small amounts, I mean amounts so small that if you were to eat that much, you would feel nothing. But it’s this dose level that has been studied and it causes increased acuity of vision. You can actually give people small amounts of Psilocybin, and then give them eye tests and they do better if they’re slightly intoxicated than if they are not. The guy who proved this, the Viennese psychologist Roland Fisher, when he described these experiments to me, he said, “And so you’ll see my young friend, here we have a case where the use of drugs actually introduces us to a more True Vision of reality than if we have avoided the drug!” Scientific proof that the drug is telling you more about reality than if you had refused it. All right, now, what kind-?” 

I: Okay, basically, the gist of what McKenna was saying was that our early ancestors, so that was Homo erectus, basically, we lived in trees in Africa, and they were forced… So basically, they lived in the trees, they would forage in the trees, eat in the trees, whatever. But as they were forced from the tropical canopy because the jungle was shrinking, it basically forced them to the ground to find new food sources. 

R: Mhm.

I: And in the process of finding new food sources, they had encountered this psychedelic mushroom. And because of the psychedelic mushroom, it basically expanded their consciousness. Now in that video clip, they were talking about visual acuity, edge detection. So basically what that means is that like, you would be out in the tall Savanna grasses. And obviously, if something were small and moving, that was likely a food source, but if it was large and moving, that was likely- 

R: A threat.

I: A threat, right. And taking this would give you the ability to catch this movement.

R: So it seems just like enhanced peripheral vision. Where like, right now there’s a certain spot that after a certain point, I wouldn’t be able to see anymore. It sounds like this widened that. With my experience, I’d say-

I: Um, I don’t know that so much-

R: But I also feel like maybe it’s more of just being spatially aware, like energetically,

I: That’s what I think more is. I don’t think it’s expanding your peripheral vision because we all have certain peripheral vision. When our vision is 2020, which is the baseline, right? You have a specific field of vision, peripherally. Now, depending on like nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, whatever; that can affect your peripheral vision. So my guess is that you take these mind altering fungus, and then that makes you like more hyper aware. 

R: Yeah. 

I: So that’s what he’s talking about. Now, there are criticisms to his theory. Some of the criticism is centered around that he’s kind of not really understood what Fisher was trying to say. We can maybe-

R: Regardless of what his original point was, I still am seeing the point this person is making though. 

I: Well, yes. So basically, you’re going along, you’re Homo erectus. 

Both: -laughs- 

R: I’m sorry! I’m a child!

I: I know, my inner child is chuckling too, I get it. But-

R: You know, what’s interesting-

I: You’re not consuming this on a like, a huge level like you would if you were going to a rave. 

R: Yeah. 

I: it’s just, it’s there in your food source.

R: Micro dosing is what we’re talking about.

I: Micro dosing. Yeah, right. 

R: Studies done now have shown that micro dosing with psilocybin and even LSD and something else, but mind altering substances, nonetheless. Micro dosing with those have had significant improvement of people with CPTSD and depression. 

I: Right. 

R: And I myself have also had that similar experience where those things have had a good effect when being done in micro doses versus larger trips or larger doses. And like, I’ve never experienced a full trip on mushrooms, like I’m air quoting ‘trips’. I’ve never experienced the walls moving or any earthly things being weird or- 

I: Sure.

R: I’ve never had a bad trip, but every time I’ve done it-

I: I have, just not on psilocybin. 

R: Like, my mind has unlocked things. A good example is the first time I ever tried mushrooms, was with a group of friends. We went to a street festival in a small town and we just walked around, we were looking at art and things like that. And it was lovely, and everything was beautiful. I was really enjoying it. I was feeling the energy. It was great. And then I went to the bathroom, and nobody told me that you’re not supposed to look at your reflection when you do psychedelic drugs. So if you ever do mushrooms, don’t look at yourself in the mirror unless you’re prepared for it because, have you seen the movie Mars Attacks?

I: Mars Attacks? 

R: Yes, I think it’s Tim Burton. It’s older. 

I: The… ak ak ak?

R: Yeah!

I: Yeah, okay. 

R: Yeah, I became aware- I looked in the mirror and made eye contact with myself and I became aware that I was a meat suit being piloted by that brain with eyes and the stem that you see in Mars Attacks, right. That is what humans are. 

I: -laughs- Sure.

R: We are being piloted by the brains that’s connected to the spinal cord, that has the eyes and then the meatsuit.

I: A meat based mech suit.

R: Yes. And I was so incredibly uncomfortable knowing that!

I: We’re meat Gundams.

R: And that changed my life forever. And that was years ago now. But whenever I had particularly bad dissociative episodes, it was I would just, I would just be very aware of that and be so uncomfortable. But I’m much healthier now because of other things. The point I’m bringing up the story is; a week later, I was at work, and I was just like doing my normal job. It was absent minded, not a big deal. One thing that is known to happen if you have seen PTSD is you can get flashbacks. 

I: Right. 

R: I had never had flashbacks before this point but because of the mushrooms that I had taken, all of a sudden, I just kind of was transported into a flashback of a really bad traumatic event when I was a kid and then I came out of it. And for a second-

I: Uh… did that have anything to do with me? 

R: Yes. It’s okay, though. 

I: Ah. Not surprising,

R: It’s okay though! Because immediately, my mind- I felt my heart start speeding up and like just having the realization that this happened to me as a kid. And immediately in my mind, there was a voice that was just like, “What does knowing this change? Absolutely nothing. I still survived it. I still got through it. Here I am now. I’m not in that situation anymore. I am safe, I am healthy, I am able to keep myself that way. I’m at work, like things are okay.” I was able to talk myself through that and not even have a panic attack. I didn’t have a whole thing where I needed to get closure, I was able to give that to myself. That was the first time I was ever able to do that. 

I: Wow. 

R: So I experienced my very first flashback ever and immediately talked myself down from a panic attack.

I: Because of the mushrooms. 

R: Yeah, like it was like within two days of doing them. 

I: Oh, so you weren’t on the mushrooms. 

R: No, this was after. And I when I looked into it, apparently a lot of people have reported that like after doing it like within like the next week, while it’s were wearing out of your system, 

I: Right. 

R: You have these realizations, but you’re still calm about it, because you’re able to have a different mindset than you normally would. 

I: Oh, interesting. 

R: And so like even though this situation if I had lived my life, knowing this, I would not be comfortable in so many life situations that I’m totally fine in. Like, for example, I’d have a problem with guns/firearms. 

I: Right. 

R: And like everybody, this is America, like everybody has guns. 

I: Unfortunately, in some cases. 

R: So like if I had the personal rule of I can’t be around that, that would severely limit my pool of people. So at a certain point, not knowing kept my life open to really good people that I’m glad are here, but also happened to have guns. You know?

I: I think there’s a lot of responsible gun owners. 

R: Yeah. 

I: I think as long as you’re being responsible with it, that’s fine. 

R: Yeah. 

I: It would be the people that would be ridiculous about it, that I would have a problem with.

R: I agree. But the point of bringing it up though, is like it was a traumatic event. But it’s okay; knowing didn’t change anything for me. Now I know so I’m like, ‘Okay, that makes sense why I didn’t remember that part of my life, because that little chunk was locked, and like it was stored away in the recesses of my mind, and then the psilocybin reconnected that…’ What’s the… what’s the word? 

I: Neurons.

R: Yeah, neurons are firing. See?! I’m ironically talking about things like these things firing on my brain, and I can’t make it work.

I: How do you know that it was connected to an actual memory and not an altered memory, or even a false memory based on the psychedelic properties of the mushroom itself?

R: Well, two things. One, I actually reached out to a couple other people that were part of the situation and just asked them like, “Hey, I remember a situation that happened like this. Can you confirm or deny?” and they confirmed. 

I: Okay, so- 

R: I did get like third party judgment that that did in fact happen. I was part of it. This isn’t something I just dreamed up and believe, or whatever.

I: The flashback was to something that had additional people-

R: Yeah.

I: -in the situation at the time.

R: Yep. And so I’m just like, “hey, this was my experience. Did you also have that experience? Was I there? Are you aware of this?” and they were able to confirm that they remember to and I did remember it properly and whatever, whatever. And then the other thing is I- now is actually an interesting time for us to have this specific point because I’ve been leaning more into my intuition. And I’ve been trying to trust when I get these like random ideas are like random thoughts that I’m like, ‘Okay, how can I tell those apart?’ I can feel it as fact. So when I say that it’s like this memory when I had it, it wasn’t like, ‘was this a dream that I had? Is it possible that I didn’t remember this?’ It was a, I know for a fact this happened, like, regardless of emotion, I just am aware of it now like, ‘Oh, yeah.’

I: Okay, so not commenting specifically on you and your situation. But it has been proven that people can have false memories. 

R: Yeah.

I: Of things that completely never happened. So like, a big example of that was like, back in the 80’s, there was this thing called the Satanic Panic, where like, there was all these reports of like, stories of kids getting sacrificed to Satan and stuff. It turned out it was absolutely not true. But yet, all these people had these memories that this thing happened. They remember like, being on an altar, they remember that knife or whatever. But those fake memories were very real to them that they honestly believed that that was an actual memory. So extrapolating from that, how do you determine… OH, before I ask the question! There’s also this because we had a conversation about a memory that you had, I didn’t have. And then I had a memory that sort of matched up with-

R: Oh yeah! Mhm. 

I: -a situation. So do you care if I share this memory? 

R: I mean, if you feel comfortable with it. 

I: Okay. 

R: Okay.

I: So you had a memory of me, almost throwing you down the stairs. 

R: Yeah.

I: But I don’t have a memory-

R: I would say a toss, like throwing is a little bit more violent.

I: Okay, a toss. 

R: But still down stairs, yes. 

I: Sure. But I don’t have that memory. And I remember a lot of the stuff that happened, because I have carried that guilt with me this entire time. So, I do remember because we were arguing at the top of the stairs. And I remember that you almost stepped off the stairs, and I reached out and grabbed you to keep you from going. So that’s a situation in which there was a thing that happened, but because we were arguing- 

R: Different perspectives.

I: -and it was different perspective. I’m obviously yelling at you, I’m being a complete a-hole. So that makes sense that I’m reaching out and you obviously probably were not aware that you were about to step off the steps. 

R: Yeah. 

I: You know, so you remember it as me like almost tossing you down the stairs. But see on my end from where I was standing, because your back was to the stairs, and I was standing in a way that I was looking, I saw you about to step down the stairs. 

R: And as a parent, you would naturally like reflexively grab. 

I: Right. 

R: But not to be a dickbag, and actually, like squeeze lemon into the wound. But I also didn’t feel safe anyway. So I wouldn’t have assumed that you were trying to save me. 

I: Correct. 

R: So like I naturally would have been inclined to think that you weren’t on my side.

I: Exactly. So and I bring that up, because- so the question is when you talk about like, completely fake memories, like with the satanic panic stuff, and then you look at memories that are true insofar as you understand it to be true. 

R: Yeah. 

I: But is not actually true, because there’s an actual different perspective that you were not aware of. So in light of those examples, how do you know that those things that you’re remembering, that come up- how do you know that those are actual memories? Again, not fake memories, not memories that are colored by being a certain point of view versus you know, a different point of view? You know what I’m asking?

R: Yes, there are several answers. So the first one really boils down to my faith in myself, and my ability to trust my memories. 

I: Okay.

R: Or my ability to remember, I guess, is the first thing. But also though, this skepticism is part of that comforting talk that I had with myself in that moment when I had that flashback. And I was like feeling the stress starting. And I had the whole like, ‘What does knowing this change? Absolutely nothing. Also, though, what if it’s not real?” Because I used to have night terrors. And like, my imagination is very mean. So it’s- 

I: Oh yeah

R: -totally possible that I could have imagined that whole situation. And so part of that talk I had with myself was ‘we don’t even know if this is fact, like we don’t even know for sure. So why would we react? Why would we spiral when nothing can be changed? If it did happen, nothing can be changed.’ 

I: Right. 

R: ‘You’ve already moved past it. You’re not in that environment. You’re not living with these people anymore. What purpose is there to get upset about this when literally nothing can be done about it?’ 

I: So you’re taking a more pragmatic approach to it.

R: Yeah. And then at that point it’s also like ‘also though, the human memory is fickle. And what if I’m imagining what if it was a night terror? Like what if it is bullshit?’ 

I: There are some times-

R: So then at that point, I have very limited spoons, why would I spend them on something I don’t know would be productive?

I: Sure. There are times that I’ve had night terrors, that I’ve just come right up out of it. And-

R: They felt so vivid and real.

I: -so vivid and real, yeah.

R: And so for that, that was part of my like, ‘we don’t know for sure, you know.’ And that’s also why I reached out to a few of the other people that were in the situation to ask if they remembered but again, you know, human memory that can’t be- 

I: Mhm.

R: That can’t be super trusted. 

I: Sure. 

R: So ultimately, the deciding factor on whether or not I was going to trust that it happened or not boil down to, there are gigantic blind spots in my memory. I don’t remember pre-Scarlett’s life much. And I had her right before I turned 18. 

I: Mhm

R: I can kind of remember bits and pockets of my relationship with Seth or with Chazdyn. And each of them was over a year. So like, I can remember pockets of being with them.

I: Right.

R: But other than that, like, I don’t really remember much many details of my life. And so like that’s why inner child work is really difficult because they’re like, ‘what did you like when you were little?’ And I remember being okay with dying at six years old, so it’s difficult to come up with answers for that. 

I: Right. 

R: But when I remember something that unlocks a bunch of other memories too, that’s when I’m like, ‘Okay, I’m inclined to think that this is something that’s actually there and I just haven’t accessed it in a long time.’ Because for example, this memory happened in our house in Newman, and I can remember the thick blue carpet- the navy blue carpet that we had in our whole house. 

I: I can confirm about the… 

R: It wasn’t necessarily shag but it was thicker than like normally carpet would be.

I: Yes because like while the carpet was kind of thick the reason why it was so thick, as you put it, is I had a premium- I forget what they call it… there’s a mat or something that you put down between the floor and the-

R: Yeah, like the padding or whatever. 

I: Padding, right. 

R: I remember crawling around and like playing on that floor with Dana in the living room. And I remember the vaulted ceiling, and I remember we had foreign exchange students at that house.

I: Yes we did.

R: We had foster kids at that house, that’s the house I got my eyebrows scar in; this realization this, like this flashback unlocked a bunch of other stuff at the same time. 

I: Gotcha. 

R: It wasn’t just this one like ‘here’s the trauma sprinkled into your workday’ it was ‘here’s some trauma, but here’s also a whole bunch of other just info dump’. 

I: Right. 

R: And like that’s the house that we got that heart bedroom set for like our bed and dresser. 

I: Yeah. 

R: I still have that dresser in Scar’s room. She’s using it currently,

I: Which just blows me away that that thing is still… 

R: And I was like six in that house.

I: Right.

R: So that’s the other thing that makes me trust that at least some of what I’m remembering is legitimate because of the other stuff that I can-

I: Because you got the extraneous details. 

R: Yeah, that I can like, factually confirm. 

I: Right. 

R: So at that point, I’m like, ‘okay, but again, what does changing like What does knowing change for me? Nothing.’ 

I: Right. 

R: I still survived it. I got through it. It happened and that sucked. But I’m still right here anyway.

I: Now you having these memories, flashbacks, whatever. Are these happening because you’re using mushrooms or…?

R: I don’t use mushrooms very often because I don’t like how it makes my stomach feel. I already in the height of my mental illnesses, I would dissociate pretty regularly. And I’d have a really hard time staying grounded like in-

I: Right. 

R: -and I used to call my body a meat suit. Like I was very anti-human for a really long time. 

I: I still call my body a meat suit.

R: I’ve changed mortal vessel. I feel like mortal vessel is embracing that it is a current state that we’re in right now. 

I: Mhm.

R: And appreciating it as a mecha suit; an organic mecha suit. Which is pretty dope if you think about it.

I: Yeah. Organic Gundam suit. 

R: Yeah, well, no. Have you ever seen the anime, Cells At Work? 

I: No. 

R: Okay, well- 

I: I’ve never heard of it. 

R: I made a tiktok talk about it and I’m going to mention it real quick, because it’s awesome. So Cells AT Work is on Netflix. And it’s your body… It explains like how the human body does what it does. And it kind of follows along as like white blood cells, red blood cells, each thing is personified. And so in each episode, something happens. And it’s something as simple as skinning your knee, that to a human you look at it, and you’re fine. You don’t really care. But to your body, it’s like “CODE RED, CODE RED, BACTERIA!” Like things coming in, attacking, people are dying, things are on fire, like it’s mad! And they’re just all your little cells. Like if we’re gonna get heartfelt about pregnant mosquito moms, I’m gonna make you feel bad for your cells because they care about you so much that when you get a skinned knee that you don’t give a rat’s ass about, they are losing their lives trying to keep your wound clean, and keep you healed and safe and alive.

I: Okay, real quick. If you have just started listening to us on this episode, and you’re like, ‘What are they talking about, mosquito moms?” You definitely want to listen to episode six: The one about solving some of the world’s problems-

R: -laughs-

I: -because we do talk about… we do talk about mosquitoes- 

R: I totally forgot that was the last episode. 

I: -and mosquito moms. Yeah, but if you’re a long term listener, you know exactly what we’re talking about, you’re in on the joke, alright.

R: It just makes me appreciate the body more because think of all the bullshit you have intentionally done to your mortal vessel. Like I used to self harm, regularly.

I: Right. 

R: So intentionally damaging your body regularly for whatever reason, and your body is just trucking along. It’s just trying to love you. It is trying to heal you, trying to keep you safe, trying to keep you alive. 

I: I can tell you- 

R: And you’re actively thwarting it! -laughs-

I: I can tell you at age 50, my body is totally reminding me of how-

R: Is tired of your shit. -laughs-

I: Yeah, how much I subjected it to, you know, being in mosh pits, or doing stupid stuff, like jumping from one abandoned building to the other and like, going through the roof.

R: Yeah. Or, you know, excessive drinking and drugs. 

I: That too, yeah. 

R: But yeah, I answer your question. I don’t regularly do mushrooms. The few times that I have done them, though, I have had a flashback like one or two in that week after I do it. And that’s pretty much it. But during that time, I’m still processing, I’m still in that mindset of whatever realizations or revelations I had. 

I: Sure. 

R: Because I anytime I do anything mind altering, and I don’t count cannabis as mind altering, because for me, it’s just regulating anxiety. I’m very rarely actually stoned. 

I: I’m not either. 

R: Usually it’s to keep, like a base level of neutral.

I: I do CBD to help take the edge off the chronic pain. 

R: Yeah. 

I: Not all the time because if I’m in a good place, I’m still hurting but it’s bearable and I can work through it. But on those times when it’s like, ‘Ooh, this is getting a little…’ 

R: Yep. 

I: ‘Spicy’.

R: Then you’re like ‘okay, a little bit of cannabis.’ Yeah. So I don’t consider that as it but anytime that I do any kind of “mind altering substance”, I always go into it intentionally. Where like, I have a whole self care, like, I wouldn’t call it self care. But I have a whole routine for anytime I do anything like that. And I go into it with the intention of like, ‘Okay, this is what I want to focus on, I just want to try to work through this trauma, I try to figure this out.’ Because ultimately, I feel like it allows me to step away from where I’m currently at in like my trauma- 

I: Right. 

R: -and just look at it from a different perspective that doesn’t have all my fears, and anxieties and concerns of self doubt, and all of the bad things that hold you back from making the right choices for yourself. 

I: Gotcha

R: I’m able to kind of step out of it for a second and just kind of be like, ‘Well, you know, sure all those bad things can happen. But what about all the good things that could happen too?’ And then I’m able to think of other solutions that I ordinarily wouldn’t. 

I: Right. 

R: You know.

I: That’s a good thing. I was gonna asked about that, because another thing that McKenna was talking about. As far as his stoned ape theory was that while the smaller amounts of the psychedelic mushrooms would give you that acuity, he was saying it like that would be small amounts. But like larger amounts would actually increase in a higher rate of reproductive success and a higher level of attention, more energy. Now you assume that this is true. And I’m not saying that it is true. There are people, I’m sure there are listeners that absolutely believe that we came from Adam and Eve and all of that. And there are people that don’t believe in that at all. I do want to respect that. So I’m not saying that whatever you believe, here’s my thing- believe what you want to believe. Just don’t be in a-hole about it.

R: -laughs- I agree. Do you wanna know what I believe, actually? 

I: Sure. 

R: So I do like your story where you’re talking about how we used to exist in trees and ended up migrating to a more ground level. 

I: Right. 

R: When I was a kid; I don’t want to call it a mockumentary because it wasn’t a comedy or anything, but it definitely isn’t fact. But Animal Planet did like a documentary about if humans evolved to mermaids. And so like, their whole point was that what their stance was at one point we lived on the ground and then something happened that caused the seaw- like the sea levels to rise. So half of the population went into the ocean and became ocean going creatures, the other half went further inland and started living near mountains and in trees and things like that. And so that’s why they’re like, here we are, but we have no way of knowing for sure that there’s nothing in the ocean that might have evolved into that so it’s kind of in the same realm of like you were just talking about how they migrated. The world changed, global warming already, whatever. 

I: Well yeah. And- 

R: So here I am, I’m like, there may be mermaids.

I: Well, scientifically, species that do adapt successfully continue on the species. Now, this is just if you talk about natural… 

R: Selection. 

I: Selection, whatever. Not talking about, like manmade things like you know, destroying an entire rain forest or whatever. But left to its own devices, species will either adapt to changes and they’ll adapt with new capabilities whether it’s cam flaws or whatever, or they die out.

R: You know, I was actually just thinking about this exact thing on my way home from work yesterday; how it’s interesting that life just seems to kind of repeat itself. And by that, I mean, like in this specific trait, it’s all about balance. They have to evolve because something somewhere else changed. So then they themselves have to change to reciprocate for that in anything.

I: Right.

R: Any living creature; plant, animal, human, everything that has evolved, it’s because something gets thrown off somewhere else. And so they all have to compensate and it’s all just trying to balance.

I: Oh, yeah, absolutely. Well, it’s just like, what Jeff Goldblum’s character in Jurassic Park said “life will find a way.” And it definitely does. But the other thing too, is that McKenna also talked about that higher doses of the Psilocybin would also be triggering activity in the language forming region of the brain. Which would be manifesting as music and visions, which would act as a catalyst for the emergence of language but then it would also dissolve ego, and then religious concerns would be at the forefront of the group, the tribes consciousness.

R: Spiritual growth, yeah.

I: Sure. Now, of course, part of the criticism is that that doesn’t all that doesn’t always show in various civilizations. Because the Aztecs used psychedelic mushrooms among the priest class. And that doesn’t reflect McKenna’s model of how psychedelic cultures would behave. There’s also the example of Amazonian tribes.

R: Yeah, but at a certain point, though, in just the cultures you’ve already listed from what I’m familiar of them with, they use that as a deity tool.

I: What do you mean like by deity tool?

R: Like only priests were able to do it, it was specifically to be able to interact with and interpret whatever their religious deity wanted them to know or do or say or etc. So it was specifically served for a spiritual purpose nonetheless, it just wasn’t given to the masses.

I: Kind of feel like the burning bush in the Old Testament-

R: Was cannabis?

I: I think it was. 

R: I wholeheartedly- I could see it. You know, I actually-

I: maybe, maybe not cannabis maybe. But-

R: That’s one thing I wanted to do when I was like originally thinking of the podcast idea, like before you and I talked. Was originally, I was thinking of making one with another friend, where I come up with these random as ideas all the time where I’m just sitting here and I’m like, ‘you know what, I bet it was actually this’ and it’s some normal as fuck explanation. 

I: Sure. 

R: That’s like, glorified throughout history, you know, and like, this is a perfect example. Like, just imagine these two dudes were like, ‘you know what, I’m so tired of all the bullshit, I’m so tired of the sheep. I just want to go hang out.” and they just find this cool cave. And it’s cooler than outside because you know, thermodynamics.

I: Right.

R: And then they find a bush and they’re like, ‘Let’s burn it, you know, keep us warm, because it’s cold in here.” And then they just hotbox a cave. 

I: -laughs-

R: And then they had their first spiritual like, ‘Whoa, what if God just like, you know, and then we like, whatever.’ And I just immediately channeled Kyle from Amanda, Please. I’m so sorry. But it’s just like, normal as fuck thing. And then it just became over glamorized throughout time. And I think about that all the time.

I: It’s funny that that’s your point of reference. Because when you’re doing that, I’m thinking of Bill and Ted. Not that Bill and Ted ever smoked weed in any of the movies.

R: Yeah. But like, ‘they were like, you know, and I’m like, Yeah, I knew you were like, dude. I was like, yeah.’ 

I: ‘Ted. Yes, Bill. Dude, dude, what if God was this burning bush?’

R: “What if God was one of us? Just a slob? Like one of us, dude?”

I: would be most-

Both: excellent! -laughs- 

R: I love this so much. 

I: Right, right. But imagine like, imagine that you are Homo erectus. 

Both: -chuckle-

I: Yeah. And you come down from the trees and you start consuming these mushrooms because you got to figure, how do we find out anything’s edible? You put it in your mouth. 

R: Yeah.

I: Like now we have a huge body of knowledge.

R: Now another thing I think about too, is imagine being the first person that ate deadly things. Imagine being the first person that got stung by a scorpion.

I: The biggest thing that I wonder about, if I had to choose one thing I wonder about- 

R: Or those berries that are poisonous that you can’t tell apart from the non poisonous ones?

I: Sure. My thing that I always did if there was if you came to me and said we will solve one of those mysteries for you. This is the mystery that I would want to know: who looked at a beehive, saw bee feces and said ‘I want to try that’.

R: -laughs- I bet you some human saw a bear do it. 

I: I’m sure that had to be somebody’s got high.

R: Well you know Mad Honey. 

I: Mad Honey?

R: Yeah, so have you’ve never heard of Mad Honey before? Oh, okay, so mad honey is made by like wasps from Rhododendron pollen? 

I: Right. 

R: And it’s like hallucinogenic. It’s like spicy honey. 

I: Okay, but in order to get it, you gotta- 

R: Yeah.

I: -you gotta face murder bees.

R: -laughs- I know like I personally… I like the idea of it. And I – maybe if it were ever like, offered to me from a source that I could actually count on and like, was reliable, then I might. 

I: And did not have hornets.

R: Yeah, it might be like, you know what? Let’s try, but I…

I: I’m not gonna lie to you. I want to try that. I would totally try it. I’m not gonna go- 

R: I could babysit you. If you some- I don’t know, I don’t know if it’s illegal or not. I feel like it’s just honey. So I can’t imagine it’s illegal. But you know, the government kind of makes anything that’s good… not good for you, but anything people like, illegal.

I: Anything that’s gonna expand your consciousness. 

R: Yeah. 

I: And realize that you’re just basically a wage slave for modern day land barons, yeah.

R: And sometimes I get so angry. Because if you think about it-

I: Because of the mad honey?

R: No. I mean, maybe. After I did, maybe if we did it, I would get angry. But like, just thinking about the way things are currently-

I: Imagine. They call it Mad Honey because-

R: And you’re like “God, I’m so angry about capitalism! Fuck this!” -laughs- I’m already there.

I: Because it causes hallucinations. So imagine, like you hallucinate a bear. And you’re just like, “God damn it, this fucking bear.”

R: “Fuck you and your American dream!”

I: What’s wrong with this guy? What’s going on? 

R: I get so angry. Because everything that exists right now was made up by a human, every single thing. Anything that your eyeballs are physically looking at, that’s not a living creature has been thought of and then invented by another person. 

I: But it has to be made out of things that are like natural. 

R: Well, no, but I mean, like, think about this. There’s physical stuff like computers-

I: Right. 

R: – street lights, roads, all of this stuff. People just kind of accept that it just exists and this is just how the world is. But it wasn’t always like this; humans did this. Humans have built everything.

I: Okay, sure. 

R: Yes, right. Now, let’s also think conceptually. Every single law that has ever existed only existed because somebody was angry enough to yell at someone enough, long and loud enough to then make it everyone’s problem.

I: “Damn you kids get off my lawn!” 

R: But what I’m saying though-

I: Now there’s a law that kids can’t be on people’s lawns. 

R: -we live in the society of capitalism, and 

I: We live in a society.

R: Society! Like that’s a construct that was created by people too! So we’re all- all of us are so fucking unhappy. I don’t know anyone that can genuinely look me in the face and be like, ‘I am so satisfied with the way everything is done. And the way that this country is ran.’

I: I think it’s not just the country, I think it’s the world. 

R: Exactly. But it’s because of constructs that humans have created. And we feel so trapped, because ‘that’s just the way things it are’ like, ‘that’s just the way it is.’ And I immediately thought of a Rancid song; That’s just the way things are. That’s just the way it is now. Sorry. But I just wanted to remind everyone while I have this platform: literally everything we don’t like about this world was instituted by other people. So why the fuck do we not believe that we can change it going forward?

I: Well, I think that’s because we just have a long line of propaganda for it.

R: I know. But what I’m saying is-

I: You know what it is?

R: Everything was made by a person. A person that did not know that it was going to change the world, the way that they knew it at the time. They were just trying an idea, just seeing if something worked. 

I: Well, a lot of things were solving a problem at that moment. So like, you got to figure like a cup. Something as simple as a cup. Our caveman ancestors were probably scooping- 

R: Yeah, with their hands…leaves…

I: – water in their hand. And I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to scoop water with your hand; like 90% of the water leaves your hand before so you’re getting sips. 

R: Yeah. 

I: Like you’re picking up whole handfuls but you’re getting a sip because most of us just poured out. 

R: Yeah.

I: And you know that somebody like figured out, ‘Oh, if I just take this half of a coconut or a leaf and just now I can scoop it and hold it.’

R: And now look at us we always use cups for everything. We have bottles, all sorts of drinking mechanisms. That’s exactly what I’m saying is like, we get so overwhelmed of ‘we’re stuck in this world, this is how it’s always going to be’ but I wanted to remind everyone that literally everything in this world is because somebody had an idea and was like ‘you know what, I’m gonna believe in myself for five fucking seconds. I’m gonna do the thing and then see what happens.’ And now everyone uses cups.

I: I think it went ‘I want to be able to drink more water than what I’m getting there’ so they create the cup and then somebody else goes ‘I’m going to create the cup and the lid.’

R: That is capitalism; is recognizing a need then supplying demand, whatever, whatever 

I: And charging for the…

R: The point I’m trying to make though is, in general, if you have an idea, do the thing. 

I: Right. 

R: Because who knows? That could be the next thing that ends up changing the world as we know it. 

I: Oh sure, absolutely.

R: Just believe in yourself for five seconds, and just do the thing. 

I: Well, yeah, but I also think that we are also unhappy- to kind of talk about what you were mentioning about being happy. I think a lot of it’s we’re unhappy because we are convinced that if I have a cup that holds the water, so I’m able to get more, I should be happy that I have the cup that gives me the ability to hold that much water.

R: But all of a sudden, you’re worried about how full it is.

I: Well, no, not necessarily because now it’s like, ‘oh, well, that person has like a cup with a lid.’ 

R: Mhm

I: So now I have to have the cup of the lid and we’re convinced that we have- that we need things that we don’t actually need. 

R: Mhm

I: So at that point, we’re externalizing our needs. We’re not really paying attention to our own needs. 

R: Yep, I would agree. 

I: This is definitely something we can go more in depth in a future podcast episode.

R: Like these are the kind of realizations that you have when you’re doing psychedelics, since that’s what the whole point of this episode was. You recognize those kinds of behaviors and thought patterns that aren’t serving you and that are perpetuating those kind of cycles.

I: Right and then you want to check out, and then that doesn’t serve a capitalist society, that you’re comfortable just sticking with the basic cup. You don’t need the cup with the bling on it that says pimp on it. 

R: -laughs-

I: Or Big Mama or whatever on it. 

R: I don’t think I actually know anybody that owns a cup like that…

I: Oh, I’m sure somebody out there. 

R: Maybe my Aunt Anna, she owns a lot of weird shit.

I: Listeners, if you own a cup, that says pimp on it-

R: Tweet at us, I wanna see all of them.

I: Tweet at us, let’s see the pictures.

R: I actually see pictures best, the best pimp cup- 

I: Yeah.

R: -and your best story. I mean, you can’t just go buy a pimp cup from Party City. I mean, you still could. 

I: Why not?

R: That’s valid, but like, 

I: Yeah, that’s valid. 

R: I would appreciate the stories. -laughs-

I: So-

R: I just want to know! I wanna know the people that own pimp cups.

I: Show us a picture of your pimp cups. It doesn’t necessarily have to say pimp on it. It could say Big Daddy, it could be whatever, okay. If you have like an awesome cup like that that’s just really weird. By all means, share that with us, show us pictures. 

R: I would also count like Viking chalices. I would count those… 

I: Sure, any kind of weird cups. 

R: …Vampiric chalices. 

I: I’m just seeing unusual cups. Shouldn’t say weird cups.

R: Not just pimp cups. Honestly my favorite cup I’ve ever seen is this one that was designed so that- it’s like a teacup, think chip from Beauty and the Beast- 

I: Mhm.

R: but fully intact, but it has a porcelain doll face on it and it’s so wonderfully creepy.

I: Yikes

R: I love it so much.

I: My friend has a redneck wine glass, and- 

R: Is it a whole bottle?

I: No it’s a red solo cup with a stem handle.

Both: -laughs-

R: Oh man, that’s… talk about recognizing a need! 

I: Right? For when you’re a redneck and want to be classy.

R: That’s an idea that someone believed in themselves for five seconds and it still works, even though it’s insane. 

I: And you know that a bunch of people bought it just for the novelty. 

R: Yeah, I would take that camping. 

I: But no, listeners just share the pictures if you have a funny story or you just want to share the story with us just feel free to drop that to us. The Twitter, which will be in the show notes and we’ll also tell you what it is here in a moment. 

R: It’s Tricky Fish Pod, and on TikTok eventually, if that’s not already up right now. I feel like the videos I make impersonating you are probably going to be up already.

I: I love those videos, not gonna lie. Alright, well, um, we talked about the stoned ape theory. 

R: Yeah.

I: Just let us know what you think whether you think it’s a plausible theory, or if you think it’s complete BS.

R: So to recap that theory, because we did get lost on a lot of tangents.

I: We did get lost, yeah. 

R: So somebody hypothesized that we ultimately evolved from another homo version-

Both: -chuckle-

R: That became enlightened after microdosing essentially, on psychedelic mushrooms and just kind of evolving mentally and neurologically, that’s the word I wanted, yeah. And I personally could see some merit in that. Based off of my experience with psychedelics, I could totally see some merit in that I feel like I personally have changed a lot mentally and spiritually in the times that I’ve experienced it.

I: I feel like that theory just basically-

R: I wish- 

I: -proves that people and animals as well, just like to get high.

R: I wish people could do this with their doctors. Like I wish microdosing was more like once a week, just go and hang out with your doctor for an hour- for hours with a trip depending on what the drug could be. But just like hanging out, you could hang out with your therapist. That way you know that you’re like with someone safe, you know if it was legal. But Oregon just decriminalized a lot of things and they’re doing so many awesome studies and I’m loving it.

I: Yes. But I feel like if you were the therapist, and having like I do it every day- 

R: That’s therapy I could get down with. 

I: -you build up, like you start the day off- 

R: No no no, your therapist as your babysitter is like sober through it, and you’re the one experiencing it and they’re helping you through it.

I: oh, I thought you were talking about how they do it too.

R: They would get so fried. 

I: -laughs-

R: But anyway, yeah, so we were talking about how humans now could have evolved psychologically from 

I: And spiritually, yeah.

R: Other people that just had their minds blown by some mushrooms.

I: By accident, it sounds like. It doesn’t sound like they were foraging, looking for it. But-

R: I mean, they probably were eventually but like, the first time, yeah.

I: Yeah.

R: I vibe with it. I’m cool with it. I’m cool accepting that. I would encourage them as long as you go about them the safe and proper way. If people ask, I’d be willing to discuss my routine for things like that. But I didn’t want to just word vomit all over you.

I: We don’t want to put that into a podcast…

R: Well, no, no, no, no, there’s- it’s totally- it’s a good routine to have regardless for self care. Like it’s still good information to have. I just didn’t want to infodump, anyway. Let us know if you want it, and how you feel about this theory about humans. And remember to be nice.

I: Yeah, be nice. Live your best life. Don’t be an a-hole.

R: Advice to live by, 

I: Alright, my fellow stoned apes. This is a week.

R: Byeeee. This has been another episode of tricky fish. If you liked what you heard and want more of us, you can find us on Apple podcast, Spotify, Stitcher, or wherever else you find your podcast. reviews and comments really help us out so feel free to leave this one. Otherwise, you can find us at tricky fish and twitter at tricky fish pod.

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