september 2020 – goodnews editorial

Today, September 1st, the Gaia Media Foundation, in cooperation with ethnobotanika gmbh of David Münster, opens a lounge with ethnobotanical assortment in Basel. The lounge is located at Hochstrasse 70 in the Gundeldingen neighborhood and can be reached in a few minutes on foot from the train station.
Until further notice, the following opening hours apply:
Tuesday     12:00 – 18:00 h
Thursday    14:00 – 20:00 h
Saturday    12:00 – 18:00 h
David has been associated with the foundation for many years and is responsible for our website. He is also the contact person for the foundation’s psychedelic counseling service www.gaiamedia.org/deutsch/beratung/ and a proven expert in the field of ethnobotany. In the new shop he offers a wide range of ethnobotanical specialties and rarities. Please also visit his online store at www.ethnobotanika.ch. There you will find all further information.
We are happy that our foundation has a meeting place again after more than ten years and look forward to your visit!
Lucius Werthmüller
President Gaia Media Foundation
P.S. In view of the current Corona rules, we will not hold an opening party but make up for it when we can meet again without restrictions.


Lethe

This is not that river
portico filled with wet shadow
and sand.
This is deciduous memory
and it grates against
whatever remains
whatever reasons
designs we have concealed.
Each day concedes there is nothing
not one thing to take away from here.
Yet we make work of shredding everything
and our hands clutching at round river rock
tell us that some things stay
rooted as gingko on the bank
while others erode into the current.
Come tomorrow you will not know
why you cannot forget
dogmata of fairy tale
or from adult memory
erase the giver of this drink
whose fluorescent face
turned your tactile midnight form
to foam
in that loud morning light.

TJ Dema (Botswana)

august 2020 – goodnews editorial

Dieter A. Hagenbach, 24 July 1943 – 17 August 2016

Like every year in August, we remember our dear Dieter who left us already four years ago. For those of you who did not know him: He studied architecture, found house building unsatisfactory, was a multimedial artist and, in 1975, opened a small shop at the Nadelberg/corner of Spalenberg in Basel. Fashion and Zeitgeist, but soon only books, including «drug literature». Dieter founded Sphinx Verlag, which mutated into a limited company in the early nineteen eighties. In the selection of his books he had a certain taste, publishing Albert Hofmann, Aleister Crowley, Timothy Leary, Robert Anton Wilson, Jean Houston and Robert Masters, Marilyn Ferguson, Alan Watts, Eliphas Levy, John and Antonietta Lilly, Terence McKenna, Dion Fortune, Idries Shah, Alexandra David-Neël, G. I. Gurdjieff, P.D. Ouspenksy… too many to list here. Dieter liked media, music, movies, art and design, puns and sly comments; he loved to laugh and generally avoided people who took themselves or life too seriously, seeking support from what he called the «tailwind of evolution.» When Sphinx Verlag had to be sold, due to the financial ruin of its main shareholder, Dieter reinvented himself as a literary agent. On his and LSD’s 50th birthday, in 1993, he founded the Gaia Media Foundation and published the first goodnews (see also www.gaiamedia.org) in printed form. In 1996, on Dieter’s initiative, the foundation opened the Gaia Lounge, where media and ethnobotanical products were sold. In 2006, the foundation switched to an electronic newsletter. In 2011, together with Lucius Werthmüller, the current president of the Gaia Media Foundation, he published the book Albert Hofmann and his LSD. In 2011, together with Lucius Werthmüller, the current president of the Gaia Media Foundation, he authored the book Mystic Chemist, The Life of Albert Hofmann and His Discovery of LSD. We owe everything to him.

Enjoy the summer – with tailwind of course!
Susanne G. Seiler


Summer Holiday

When the sun shouts and people abound
One thinks there were the ages of stone and the age of bronze
And the iron age; iron the unstable metal;
Steel made of iron, unstable as his mother; the towered-up cities
Will be stains of rust on mounds of plaster.
Roots will not pierce the heaps for a time, kind rains will cure them,
Then nothing will remain of the iron age
And all these people but a thigh-bone or so, a poem
Stuck in the world’s thought, splinters of glass
In the rubbish dumps, a concrete dam far off in the mountain…

Robinson Jeffers

july 2020 – goodnews editorial

America has captured the European imagination ever since it existed. Whether one hates it or loves it, the sound of its name, its cities, the glamour and pace, but also the wars and social inequalities associated with the United States of America evoke strong images in us. As white Europeans we cannot know how much Black Lives Matter in the USA. What we do know is that it is not enough here, as we stand humbled by our cruel collective colonial past. We also know that we need to break free from our own prejudices and create better conditions for African-Europeans and People of Color. Does that mean that we should feel guilty? Guilt leads to fear, and a life dominated by fear keeps us locked in the past instead of leading to better solutions for the future. Instead of being afraid of each other, we want to take care of each other. Apologies are due. The United States urgently need a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. There are many shadows waiting to be brought to light and integrated into lived history. We must learn to better accept the unknown and make it a part of our lives. In Europe too.

Faithfully,
Susanne G. Seiler


In that other fantasy where we live forever

we were never caught

we partied the southwest, smoked it from L.A. to El Dorado
worked odd jobs between delusions of escape
drunk on the admonitions of parents, parsons & professors
driving faster than the road or law allowed.
our high-pitched laughter was young, heartless & disrespected
authority. we could be heard for miles in the night

the Grand Canyon of a new manhood.
womanhood discovered
like the first sighting of Mount Wilson

we rebelled against the southwestern wind

we got so naturally ripped, we sprouted wings,
crashed parties on the moon, and howled at the earth

we lived off love. It was all we had to eat

when you split you took all the wisdom
and left me the worry

Wanda Coleman

june 2020 – goodnews editorial

In school, I was bad in physics and chemistry as soon as it came to calculations with formulas, but I admire the natural sciences and have faith in those who dedicate their lives to them. I believe in mankind, especially when it pursues the search for knowledge, the perennial great adventure for all people of all times. Of course, this knowledge is also contradictory and, more often than not, contradictorily communicated and politically instrumentalized. God knows science is not flawless, and yet it has given us much of what enriches our lives today. In orderly Switzerland, where the majority trusts the government (but remain critical), where our wishes are heard (and selectively fulfilled), and where we define consensual decision-making as our (slow) common good, sacrifices are readily made. Even the majority of believers in a global conspiracy, with the usual suspects as the winners, have been staying at home and hugging their tablets or cells, while basking in their supposed superiority. What’s new?

With early summer greetings,
Susanne G. Seiler


(Many Storms)

however many storms
are within you
there’s always room for more.

the ocean
did not gain its vastness
by turning the rain away

pavana

may 2020 – goodnews editorial

First of all, I apologize for not having thought to find out who wrote the Corona poem that I published in the March goodnews. It is by the poet, author and editor Kristin Flyntz. And did you know that we possibly owe our consciousness to a primal virus that settled in our brain a long time ago? There it combined its genetic code with that of our distant ancestors. This tiny code is still active within us, bundling genetic information and sending it from one nerve cell to the next in small virus-like capsules. These packets of information could play a critical role in how nerves communicate and reorganize themselves over time, which in turn is a prerequisite for a higher thinking function. (Cell, 20181/11) Someone who could think (and talk) up a storm was the cultural anthropologist Terence McKenna, who died twenty years ago this April, and who would have appreciated this kind of information. His book True Hallucinations is still way ahead of its time and a must read for any psychonaut. You also need to see the online Tribute to Terence McKenna his brother Dennis McKenna staged (link below). I haven’t seen every conversation, but my favorite episode so far shows Dennis with Bruce Damer, who advocates a culture of compassionate sharing, whereas Dennis shows the kind of attitude towards drugs and life in general I would like to see more of.

So far so good,
Susanne G. Seiler


Mushrooms

Overnight, very
Whitely, discreetly,
Very quietly

Our toes, our noses
Take hold on the loam,
Acquire the air.

Nobody sees us,
Stops us, betrays us;
The small grains make room.

Soft fists insist on
Heaving the needles,
The leafy bedding,

Even the paving.
Our hammers, our rams,
Earless and eyeless,

Perfectly voiceless,
Widen the crannies,
Shoulder through holes. We

Diet on water,
On crumbs of shadow,
Bland-mannered, asking

Little or nothing.
So many of us!
So many of us!

We are shelves, we are
Tables, we are meek,
We are edible,

Nudgers and shovers
In spite of ourselves.
Our kind multiplies:

We shall by morning
Inherit the earth.
Our foot’s in the door.

Sylvia Plath

april 2020 – goodnews editorial

Instead of an editorial

This anonymous message was sent to me by a friend. It's a bit long, but most of us have plenty of time now, hopefully to stay healthy!
Much love from the bowels of the earth,

Susanne G. Seiler


An Imagined Letter from Covid-19 to Humans

Stop. Just stop.
It is no longer a request. It is a mandate.
We will help you.
We will bring the supersonic, high speed merry-go-round to a halt
We will stop
the planes
the trains
the schools
the malls
the meetings
the frenetic, furied rush of illusions and “obligations” that keep you from hearing our
single and shared beating heart,
the way we breathe together, in unison.
Our obligation is to each other,
As it has always been, even if, even though, you have forgotten.
We will interrupt this broadcast, the endless cacophonous broadcast of divisions and distractions to bring you this long-breaking news:
We are not well.
None of us; all of us are suffering.
Last year, the firestorms that scorched the lungs of the earth
did not give you pause.
Nor the typhoons in Africa,China, Japan.
Nor the fevered climates in Japan and India.
You have not been listening.
It is hard to listen when you are so busy all the time, hustling to uphold the comforts and conveniences that scaffold your lives.
But the foundation is giving way,
buckling under the weight of your needs and desires.
We will help you.
We will bring the firestorms to your body
We will bring the fever to your body
We will bring the burning, searing, and flooding to your lungs
that you might hear:
We are not well.
Despite what you might think or feel, we are not the enemy.
We are Messenger. We are Ally. We are a balancing force.
We are asking you:
To stop, to be still, to listen;
To move beyond your individual concerns and consider the concerns of all;
To be with your ignorance, to find your humility, to relinquish your thinking minds and travel deep into the mind of the heart;
To look up into the sky, streaked with fewer planes, and see it, to notice its condition: clear, smoky, smoggy, rainy? How much do you need it to be healthy so that you may also be healthy?
To look at a tree, and see it, to notice its condition: how does its health contribute to the health of the sky, to the air you need to be healthy?
To visit a river, and see it, to notice its condition: clear, clean, murky, polluted? How much do you need it to be healthy so that you may also be healthy? How does its health contribute to the health of the tree, who contributes to the health of the sky, so that you may also be healthy?
Many are afraid now.
Do not demonize your fear, and also, do not let it rule you. Instead, let it speak to you—in your stillness,
listen for its wisdom.
What might it be telling you about what is at work, at issue, at risk, beyond the threats of personal inconvenience and illness?
As the health of a tree, a river, the sky tells you about quality of your own health, what might the quality of your health tell you about the health of the rivers, the trees, the sky, and all of us who share this planet with you?
Stop.
Notice if you are resisting.
Notice what you are resisting.
Ask why.
Stop. Just stop.
Be still.
Listen.
Ask us what we might teach you about illness and healing, about what might be required so that all may be well.
We will help you, if you listen.

Love Works

march 2020 – goodnews editorial

Julian Paul Assange, the unloved whistleblower

We may not like him as readily as we like Edgar Snowden, his own sympathies leaning to the right, but controversial journalists also have a right to justice, especially since the Australian founder of Wikileaks, through the extensive revelations that Chelsea Manning made available to him, exposed substantial injustices himself. Anyone who read carefully suspected for some time that the rape accusations that Sweden made against Assange were constructed. These are not his friends from the Chaos Computer Club or other hackers spreading the accusations published by the Swiss online newspaper Republic as a primer: The UN Special Envoy on Torture, Nils Melzer, states that Assange’s case is dishonest and that it is illegal to imprison someone in such a way that his – physical, mental and social – health suffers. This is more than given with Assange; the images of a broken man on the verge of dereliction being dragged from the Ecuadorian embassy by the police, after almost seven years of what amounted to solitary confinement, went around the world. Since then he has been rotting away in a London prison. Let us hope that the international appeals and demonstrations for his release will bear fruit. Ex iniuria ius non oritur!*

Please, stay well!
Susanne G. Seiler

*No right can come from wrong.


A non-binary person walked by

And I thought of my daughter, I mean my child. And of my breasts,
which protrude in a superfluous fashion, and of my make-up,
mask of an aging drag queen. And I felt ridiculously out-of-touch.
A woman gets tired of impersonating a woman, like keeping the
front porch clean for the drivers-by. Why not write a book instead?
Why not tattoo Fuck the Gender-Cops on your knuckles?
I asked my child what should be done with my jewelry when I die
and they said I still like jewelry, and something inside me as primitive
as putting flowers on a grave felt gratified. I can die now, I thought,
and all the ways I tried to make them conform to femininity, may they
die with me. I’m sorry, darling, that I wrapped you up in all that soft
pink fairy shit, that tulle, for your quinceañerx.

Gail Wronsky

february 2020 – goodnews editorial

Review 2019 Outlook 2020

Last year, two projects were in the focus of the foundation: a psychedelic counselling center and the creation of a Gaia Lounge.
On November 1, 2019, “Psychedelics Counselling” a project of the Gaia Media Foundation in cooperation with the Swiss Medical Society for Psycholytic Therapy (SAEPT), began operations. It is intended to offer help with questions or problems related to the use of psychedelics and is financed for the time being by an earmarked donation of the Eulenpark Foundation to the Gaia Media Foundation. David York Münster is responsible for the telephone triage. Further information can be found at www.gaiamedia.org.
The project of a publicly accessible lounge similar to the former Gaia Bazaar is already well advanced. It is to become a meeting center where drinks and small meals are served. Furthermore, ethnobotanical products and media on the topics of the Gaia Media Foundation will be sold there and seminars, workshops and lectures will be held. If possible, the media library of the Gaia Media Foundation will also find a new home there. We have found a passionate ethnobotanist in David York Münster, who, with his ethnobotanika Ltd., will oversee the project together with the foundation. It is planned that the Gaia Lounge will open its doors in April 2020. Currently we are looking for a suitable location.
After the success of the one-day symposium 75 Years of LSD: Where is the journey heading? on April 19, 2018, at the Hofmatt Hotel near Basel, we are holding another one-day conference on April 18, 2020, entitled The Psychedelic Renaissance, at the same location. It is again being organised by the Gaia Media Foundation together with Nachtschatten Verlag and SAEPT. All information can be found on the website www.bicycleday.ch.
Since August 2017 Susanne G. Seiler has been the editor of the monthly newsletter gaiamedia goodnews, which is sent out in a German and an English version and has met with positive response. She is also in the process of cataloguing our media library.
Our YouTube channel gaiamedia with over a hundred of its own videos and dozens of others currently has 6,680 subscribers.
My thanks go to the two foundation board members Dr. Pierre Joset and Kerim Seiler. I would also like to thank Susanne G. Seiler for the content of the newsletters, Therese Hartmann for taking care of the formatting and dispatch of the goodnews and for her organisational support of the foundation, as well as David York Münster for the maintenance of the website gaiamedia.org and for his technical know-how.
Last but not least, on behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to express my sincere thanks to the Foundation’s patrons and all other people who support the Foundation.
For our future activities we depend more than ever on you. We therefore ask you to become a patron or to renew your subscription. Contributions will remain unchanged in 2020. Information on patronage can be found here 
Donations are also more than welcome. Thank you very much!

With my best wishes and warm regards

Lucius Werthmüller
Chairman of the Board of the Gaia Media Foundation

january 2020 – goodnews editorial

The last of the most famous trio in psychedelic history is no more: in 2019, we did not only lose Ralph Metzner but now also Ram Dass. The latter died in his home on Maui, on Sunday 22 December. We met in the early Eighties, at Timothy Leary’s house on Wonderland Drive, in LA, when the famous guru happened to be considering if he would not rather be Richard Alpert again. On the way to a party at longevity specialist Roy Walford’s in Venice, Tim and Richard, who was driving us, had a heated argument. “Life is a vale of tears,” intoned the author of Be Here Now, the hippie Hindu bible of 1971, with two million copies sold worldwide. “We must do everything in our power to alleviate the suffering of the world!” “That’s the most awful thing I’ve ever heard you say, Dick!” Tim shot back from the co-driver’s seat, a half-full glass of Pimm’s in his right hand. “Life is a glorious adventure, a heady ride we should enjoy to the fullest!” And to Barbara (his wife), Dieter (Hagenbach, his publisher) and me (Susanne), sharing the back seat: “So why are you so quiet back there?” “We’re listening and learning,” I answered, somewhat ironically, when Barbara and Dieter didn’t speak up. At the party, it was plain to see why it was not so easy for Richard to stop being Ram Dass – so many people adored him, wanted to be near him and sought his advice, and though he knew I wasn’t necessarily one of them, he also enveloped me in one of his famous bear hugs upon leaving the next day. Thanks for the love, thanks for the light and thanks for your great compassion, Baba!
Dear friends and readers – here we would like to offer our best wishes for a positive and benevolent 2020.

From the heart,
Susanne G. Seiler 


Salt

as if God spilt salt
on his midnight tablecloth

as if Gibran’s Ugly
had flung Beauty’s cloak
across the waters –
its soft light muted
in repentance

as if star by blue star
remembered the loss of each mother
and lit her face for a thousand years

as if matariki*
leapt off calendar pages
turning in my veins
down through my fingers
bending to pluck
a purple orchid.

Selina Tulsitala Marsh

*Maori Harvest Festival

dezember 2019 – goodnews editorial

Facts and opinions
The earth is round, the idea that it should be flat marginal. It will not prevail any more than the notion that the sun circles around the earth. Now, nobody is too insignificant to have a point of view. Such is the essence of democracy, in which, as Albert Hofmann once aptly remarked, everyone has the right to his or her opinion, no matter how unqualified. Nobody realized the prophetic character of this bon mot at the time but nowadays all kinds of groupings entertain absurd ideas that they are selling us as the truth. In addition to arbitrary convictions they also perpetrate dangerous beliefs, which is why the public expression of extremist opinions is punished in Switzerland: anyone who calls for hatred and/or racism is not allowed a voice. Virtual hatred is harder to contain, and the rough and tabloid-like tone in the social media difficult to endure. I’m basically interested in all voices. But political propaganda and discussions that stir people up against each other and lead to the most confusing insinuations, attacks and insults? No, thanks. We live in a consensual reality, a network of perception we all weave together – let us not get caught up in its virtual loops but rather be active ourselves!

With conviction,
Susanne G. Seiler


Autobiography

this is the story of my life
each word totally untruthful fact
each memory unhappening exactly
almost not at all the way i said it did
it’s all un in here
permanently
writ on sand
faint tracings
of a fully empty life
in clear, invisible detail
hidden in plain sight

to lie or not to lie
is not the question
even the lies that i might tell
are true

j. morley

Posts navigation

1 2 3 4
Scroll to top