Less than two years ago, Dennis McKenna set out to write The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss, the story of his life with his brother, Terence, the eloquent, elfin bard of the psychedelic underground. Terence’s many writings and recorded raps have inspired countless consciousness explorers the world over and yet very little information concerning his life was available outside of the stories that Terence told himself. Thus, in the spring of 2011, Dennis set up a Kickstarter campaign to raise money to self-publish a book describing his life with Terence McKenna. He made history – raising more money for a book than anyone ever had through Kickstarter – and now, as of November 16th 2012 (Terence’s 66th birthday), the book has been launched through Amazon and Barnes and Noble as an eBook!
As you may know, this project has already created quite a bit of controversy and discussion in the psychedelic community (see the Tea Faerie’s piece on The Terence McKenna Thing for more). I expect that, with the availability of the full story, we will continue that discussion with more clarity and context than ever before. Both Terence and Dennis have had tremendous influences on the psychedelic movement, and now, as we learn about the Bard through the eyes of his brother, we will all be able to move towards a greater understanding of ourselves and how we, as psychedelic explorers and pioneers, have come to stand at this undeniable tipping point of human consciousness.
Although I only received my digital copy of the book yesterday, and only had a few moments to pore over the initial pages, I can already say with confidence that this is a beautifully written, incredibly engaging book. Even if you are not familiar with Terence McKenna, Dennis’ storytelling will draw you in and engage you on many levels, from the spiritual to the political, in mere moments. If you have any interest in the psychedelic movement, or in the expansion of human consciousness, this book will not disappoint.
A full review is, of course, forthcoming. In the meantime, enjoy this video of Dennis reading a passage from the book at the EntheonGaia conference in Australia.
Official Website for The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss
The Kindle Edition of The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss
The Nook Book Edition of the Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss
Say what you want about Terence; he was–and is–informing, enriching or inspiring on levels and in categories far beyond mere psychedelic exploration, as vast as _that_ is. I don’t know; can a body drink as much Ayahuasca as he did and _not_ be a mensch in the service of his fellows?
I absolutely agree, Alfred. Terence wasn’t perfect, yet he was unquestionably courageous, and inspired many people to greater openness and explorations. He has done great service for all of humanity, and I’m glad that he is still being remembered and honored.
Without Terence McKenna, I would have not been exposed to so many interesting concepts. His work has tremendously influenced my everyday life and interests. This book sounds so wonderful. Great article and thanks for providing that video. I’ve always wondered what their journeys were like and most of all, what brought both brothers to point of psychedelic voyages.
Thank you for your comment, Dan. Check out the review of the Brotherood of the Screaming Abyss for more information (and another great video). The book provides wonderful tales of the adventures of these brothers – enjoy!