On the Edge of Globalization w/ Brian Francis Culkin
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On this edition of Parallax Views, globalization has led to culture shocks in societies around the world. What to make of this phenomenon, its interactions with culture and the way we live our lives, and what it means for the future? Critical theorist Brian Francis Culkin, co-author with Shipibo shaman Ricardo Amaringo of The Ayahuasca Dialogues: Globalization, Plant Medicine, and the Healing of the Human Heart, joins us to unpack the topic of globalization and it's relationship to what philosopher Byung Chul Han calls "The Burnout Society". In the first part of our conversation we focus on the aforementioned burnout is producing in citizens of various different nations as well as the ways in which globalization may be altering our social lives. In particular, Brian hones in on how the ever accelerating techno-society we are creating is moving away from the nuclear family unit as its foundation for society.
Additionally, we delve into Brian's experiences with the indigenous Shipibo-Conibo people of the Amazon rainforest in Peru. This leads to a discussion of his collaboration with the previously mentioned healer Ricardo Amaringo and Brian's thoughts on the psychedelic plant drug ayahuasca. In this regard we discuss the the different perspectives on ayahuasca, ayahuasca tourism and its problems, ayahuasca as not merely a drug but also a medicine, and the importance of indigenous cultures. We also chat about ideas related to the apocalypse and End times, Byung-Chul Han's concept of "the autistic performance machine", the opening of the heart and seeing the other, neoliberalism and production, the human as a cosmic phenomenon and man as stardust, spirituality and materialism, Catholicism and Christianity, the humility of Carl Sagan vs. science and atheism as a theology, the value of friendship, and much, much more.