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Cosmic Trigger I deals with Wilson’s experiences during a time in which he put himself through a process of “self-induced brain change” as well as vignettes of his earlier life. The main discovery of this process—which, he tells us, is known in certain traditions as Chapel perilous— is that “reality” (although a noun in most Indo-European language systems, and therefore commonly conceptualized as being a definite, unchanging “‘thing”) is mutable and subjective to the observer.

Wilson employs several models for his experiences, such as the interstellar ESP connection, during which time Wilson enters a belief system (or as Wilson prefers to call it, reality tunnel) in which he is communicating telepathically with extraterrestrials residing in the Sirius star system. Wilson states, however, that this belief system does not necessarily have any objective truth, which highlights his main point: that all such models—whether spiritual or scientific—are just that: models, or maps, of the world, and they should not be confused with an objective, permanent reality. Throughout the book, he makes references to specific paranormal personal and group experiences, yet he does not allow himself to become convinced of their reality apart from his perception of them. He calls this approach “model agnosticism“.

As the title suggests, the book also deals with the Bavarian Illuminati conspiracy (which Wilson neither rejects as utterly false, or embraces as true, in keeping with his theme) and other related intrigues. The work also touches on a wide range of other subjects, from Timothy Leary‘s thoughts on brain circuits, JFK’s assassination, through to Sufism and numerous occult practises.

The “fringe” physicists Jack Sarfatti and Saul-Paul Sirag are prominently featured in this book. Wilson describes Sarfatti’s early intuitions about “signal nonlocality” (see current papers of Antony Valentini http://eprintweb.org/S/authors/All/va/Valentini ) i.e. “information transfer without energy transfer”.