“Psychedelic excitation – as in a D.M.T. trip – brings us into contact with strange transcendent beings, sentient entities that seem independent, conscious and 100% real. But what are these machine elves? Are they real? Has DMT opened the ‘third eye’? Are we communicating with aliens, across the universe divide?”

Personality is the iceberg tip of a multidimensional internal universe of the mind.

The conscious tip doesn’t know much about what’s happening in the exponentially larger elsemind, but psychedelic excitation – like a D.M.T. trip – brings tip and base into profound contact.

Temporarily. Too ubiquitous to ignore, psychonauts report meeting intelligent aliens – distinct autonomous conscious intelligences. 100% real.

It’s not an illusion.

The trip-induced communion is authentic, and the familiarity most feel is not misplaced.

Psilocybin, whichever its ingestion mechanism, sourced, creates certain psychotropic conditions. These rarely occur in sober daily life.

The psychedelic communion with “alien” intelligence is authentic.

Transcendent visuals are symbolic – usually metaphorical – but this isn’t the same as illusions. Fundamental truth is generally under many layers of easy to parse into limbic experience, but the mind has imagination for its toolkit and a palette as diverse as all memory.

Nowadays this means it presents the communion as aliens in the universe. Religious minded meditators often see God and angels in heaven. Yoga practitioners perceive Atman and Buddhist mandala. African animists meet ancestral spirits. Amazonian ayahuasca shaman might speak to ghosts and dryads.

The sights and sounds vary, but the meta of the encounter is common to all.

None of these concept embodiments are quite on point.

It would be more apt to call the strange entities by a name popularized in the 1960s/1970s by Timothy Leary, renowned early psychonaut: MACHINE ELVES.


In reality, the machine elves are autonomous shards of intelligence – fractals of sentient autonomy – whose existence is entirely inside your brain’s enclosed altconscious. Let’s be clear: inside your brain, nowhere else.

The machine elves are of your brain, by your brain. But they are not you. They are distinct networks of synopses and neurons and axioms, tangled into complex consciousness patterns. In essence the machine elves are made of the same cellstuff as you.

The machine elves are sentient though these neurological entities are variously developed, from personality abortions to living homunculi all the way to the scintillating machine elves themselves. In many cases the altconscious entities will inhabit your brain as long as you do, though without voice or agency. Indeed, their hold on existence is entirely dependant on you and how well you keep body and mind together.

The machine elves share your brain but their life (such as it is) is ringfenced inside a separated space, disarmed, shackled; exiled behind neurological walls. The absolute separation between “you” and the machine elves is the denouement of a ubiquitous Darwinian battle, a survival of the fittest we’ve all fought and won; though like all the other early life struggles, it doesn’t carry over into memory.

The conscious “you” – the person reading or listening to these words – was the sole survivor of a defining civil war for brain-domination, fought out in the crucible of natural selection before your earliest memory. The battle was winner takes all, contested entirely in your unfinished brain and the victorious alpha-identity (you) gained control of nascent executive function. This means command of mind and body, entrusted with the task of survival; going forth and multiplying.

The machine elves were not so lucky. All the proto-sentient fractals, from stone baby to autonomous rival, were ultimately casualties of neurological war. Some – early fatalities and less developed homunculi – were recycled early by your brain. Others, more evolved, more capable, were mulched into your rapidly expanding subconscious.

Many, however, didn’t succumb to termination. Their self-awareness had evolved to be ingrained with self-preservation and, though beaten, could only be subdued, separated from your dominant identity for life. No appeal. No hope of parole.

These fully-formed loci of sentient identity are the machine elves and though they have been silenced and (except in certain mental illness) locked out of interfering with your dominant autonomy, the homunculus tangle of neurons must “live” – a lifespan in decades – in a disconnected headspace. This might explain why the “aliens” are so universally welcoming and attentive, when psilocybin allows you to visit.

The persona fractals – and you – are born from the same zygote fertility. Homunculus to self-aware machine elves, whatever the endpoint of their particular development, these sentient prototypes are more than brothers and sisters. Though casualties on the Darwinian battlefield they are all iterations of personality that may, under different conditions, have become you.

Had a few variables of innumerable possible factors been slightly different it might have been you enclosed in the altconscious voidspace – alive but formless, adrift in an existence impossible to know.

For all we know the psilocybin not only lets the dominant personality travel into the void but brings the first limbic light and sound to the isolated machine elves. This would certainly be a catalyst for the flood of emotions the psychedelic encounter sets loose.

Welcome, then, to the prisoners of your mind. Not trapped in a physical body but in a timeless, non-spatial void created and buried by your brain.

Homunculus personae locked away in a deep altconscious lanaikea, sentient ouroborous playing out a concurrent existence, bound by the arrow of time but suspended non-physical, bizarre instances of fecund neurogenesis – like the living ocean-planet of Stanislav Lem’s Solaris – perpetually separated by your mind’s virtually infinite paraspace.

These heterogeneous altconscious homunculi are the losers in the Darwinian psyche, earlier attempts at intelligence, weaker personality experiments superseded by superior neurological offspring.

Further Reading:


The Deep History of Ourselves: The Four-Billion-Year Story of How We Got Conscious Brains

Psilocybin and DMT and the Pineal Gland (Third Eye)

Machine Elves and the Psychedelic Stone Babies

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