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Ask The Old Hippie

Thanks for the great response to Ask the Old Hippy
The Old Hippy regrets he an’t answer everyone’s questions.
The most recent questions and answers are below.

“Old hippies don’t die, they just lie low until the laughter stops and their time comes round again.” – Joseph Gallivan 

How to Become an Activist

im 14 and im a hippie and i wanted to ask you how the young hippies of this
generation could make our voices heard like you did in the 60s?
peace, love and happiness

Are you ready to take a stand for what you believe in? Are you willing to be arrested for expressing your civil rights? Are you prepared to be ridiculed and scorned by your parents, teachers, and peers? If you’re ready, then you can become an activist. If you’re not ready, then you can still make a difference by changing yourself. In this manner you can influence people on a one-to-one basis. You can become a beneficial presence on the planet.

If you choose to become an activist you can help organize your peers in your school or neighborhood. You can protest, sit-in, boycott, have rallies, benefit concerts, etc. Whatever is needed to draw attention to your cause(s). What to protest? Hold a meeting and decide from the numerous worthy causes be they local, national or international.

I think what caused the hippy movement to disintegrate was the lack of organization and leaders. Of course the FBI saw to that. So we need new leaders who have organizational prowess and perhaps some charisma. I don’t think it would be too difficult to find some old hippies to share some ideas and energy.

If you’re not the type to be in the spotlight, then you must work on yourself. You must learn who you are. Discover yourself, love yourself, be yourself. Become aware. Wake up from your social programming and find your true nature. Then, and only then can you have a positive impact upon others beyond your program. Then YOU get to write the program.

Together we can write a new program for the whole planet. This one we’ve been using for centuries has too many bugs!

Governments? Hah! Obsolete, so delete!
Religions – delete hypocricy, insert LOVE!
Economic Disparity – a little cut and paste (the Robin Hood method) = Economic Equality!
Environmental destruction and overpopulation – reprogram,
New program = Less is more!

Remember – you create your own reality, so if you’re not part of the solution, then you are the problem!

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 22193

Best Way to Ingest Mushrooms?

I’m planning a shroom event……..
My question…….I CAN’T STAND the taste of those mushrooms, what is the
best way to ingest them???
I’ve heard in teas, also that milk products elimate the taste of the shroom.

Please explain to me the best way to process them?


My favorite way is to make honey from the fresh ‘shrooms. Just stick them in a jar of honey. After a few days the psilocybin leeches out into the honey and you can sweeten your tea with it. This way you can control your dose very carefully and you lose the intense mushroom flavor.

Other ideas are using them in soup, milkshakes, and omletes. In Holland they sell mushroom tea bags in the Smart shops. But as I’ve mentioned before, I don’t do mushrooms any more. They contain other toxins that can cause a lot of discomfort to some people.

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 71990

How Do You Stop Judging People?

Hey…I’m a 15 year old deadhead. I was born into a family of hippies and they’ve raised me well. Deadheads are nonjudgemental right? I find myself judging others often. My reason being that there are so many phonies out there, who just don’t understand. I hate to judge others,
it makes me bum out. But I don’t want to surround myself with people like that. How do you feel when you see a young hippie, but you know
their heart isn’t in it? Please tell me.

Love Tessa

Being judgemental has survival value to our species. We need to distinguish between our kind and others. That helps preserve our DNA’s characteristics, can’t go mating with just anybody, right? It’s one of those things we’ve been programmed to do. Overcoming our genetic proclivities is quite a challenge.

As any geneticist will tell you however, interbreeding weakens the species. It’s far better to have individuals with different characteristics (and DNA) breed so there is more diversity in the genetic code. This leads to another human proclivity, opposites attract! So what’s this got to do with hippies?

In the case you mention, you can distinguish between the phony and the real hippies, having been raised by the latter. But how many old hippies were phony? Just because they were products of the 60s doesn’t make them any more real than these young hippies. How else could they become corporate executives, republicans and politicians (especially those who didn’t inhale)? Did they sell out their values, or did they never truly believe in them to begin with?

Judging people is society’s way of keeping us apart. Having traveled around the world, I have learned that people are the same everywhere. They have the same needs, hopes and dreams. It is society that has incorporated our genetic coding into social patterns of discrimination. That’s what makes it doubly difficult. We must transcend both our genetic and social programming to achieve a worldview in which everyone is equal.

In a world that rewards the fastest, the smartest, the strongest, the luckiest, the weathiest, the most popular, the most creative, the most devious, the most powerful, the most dangerous, most people follow one of these models. We must find new models that don’t require us to surpass others to achieve our goals. What if achieving our goals was dependent upon helping others achieve theirs? This is a form of selflessness that is required for real personal growth.

So judging people is just programming that you can undo. You must realize that others are also programmed and just doing what they are programmed to do. Even the minor act of dressing like a hippy is a programmed symbolic act of rebellion against parental authority. They probably wouldn’t dream of adopting any radical hippie views, since that would require a deep reprogramming, for which they are unprepared.

Yet, you must feel somewhat insulted to see people who dress the role, know a few of the lines, but don’t really have a clue what the script is about. You know it’s just a matter of time before they either give up this folly and get on with their programmed lives, or discover the script’s inner meaning and begin to live it. If you are friendly with these individuals, you might want to discuss this with them. If they don’t get it, don’t fret, you’ve done your part.

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 31593

Psychedelics, Marijuana and Depression

-All Praise the Old Hippy-

much respect for you, the shaman of the next generation. I have an EXTREME
fascination w/ psychedelics and have done acid and shrooms a good amount of
times. at first, when i was young, i had fun. now i always get caught in
that grey, quiet, depressive state where all feels absolutely HOPELESS. i
also have short bursts of this intense hopelessness feeling when sober
now (spilt-second flashback?). i smoke weed everyday and am caught up in the
should i be smokin’ everyday loop of depression. i guess my question is
this. I have a good amount of problems, is it realistic to try and deal w/
these problems w/ psychedelic use? or should i deal w/ the depression
through yoga and meditation? Should i quit weed while working on the self, or
at least cut down? Does marijuana perpetuate my depression? Will psychedelics
do more bad than good while you are depressed?

i am 20, and have probably
been depressed for about 5-6 years. i have social anxiety disorder and have
not responded to prozac, but haven’t been very proactive in dealing with my
problems. Any advice you can give me about depression that isn’t well known
would be very helpful. I’d also like to know if salvia is worth trying.
thank you very much.



Cannabis and psychedelic drugs are NOT anti-depressants, and should NOT be
used to solve emotional problems. And yes, they can make things worse. You
say you’ve been depressed for 5-6 years. Have you been smoking pot that
long? If so there might be a connection!

Everyday use of marijuana really gets you in a rut, and the more you use,
the deeper the rut. Get it? You can get so low you can’t even see above
the ditch you’ve dug. So why not stop? Any change of mind will probably be
a big improvement. Oh you might get a little more depressed for a couple of
days when you first stop, but then, THEN, you’ll start feeling more alive
than you have in a long time. This is the point at which you must be
careful. I’ve learned that when you start to feel good naturally, it’s
like getting high, but that often kicks in a I feel great, let’s get high
syndrome that starts you smoking again. That’s the hard one to get beyond.
But once you do, you may find yourself with more energy and more motivated
than usual. Then you must focus that energy on something fun and
productive. So plan out what you’re going to do when you get straight, and
psyche yourself to do it! Either go back to school, or get a new job, or
take that trip, whatever, just take advantage of your newfound zest. Then
you won’t need the crutch of drugs to define your daily life.

Yoga and meditation are excellent for improving your mental and physical
condition, which could be a large part of your depression.

If you can manage that, and learn how to keep yourself straight when you
need or want to be straight, then perhaps you can approach cannabis again as
a therapeutic or recreational drug, not as a dependency.

If you cannot manage the above prescription, then you really should seek
outside help (as you’ve just done by writing me!). Why be miserable, when
you should be enjoying life?

I highly recommend you DON’T use salvia until your depression is cleared up! It won’t help!

Wishing you Health & Happiness,
The Old Hippy


Posted by: skip
Views: 49265


The US and Middle East Oil

Hello old Hippy –

My question is – is the purpose of the manufactured wars in the Middle East simply to remove any resistance to US control of oil reserves?

I look forward to your answer.

Peace, Ravenstar

I would have to say the oil reserves are a very important part of middle east policy as always. But I don’t think the US has control over those oil reserves, yet their presence in the region does give the US leverage if push comes to shove. However much of what is happening now is a very complex power play involving not just the obvious players like the US, Britain, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, etc., but also China and Russia figure prominently.

First off the US has just accomplished a number of secret goals despite missing Bin Laden and Mullah Omar. It now has several bases in Afghanistan, and more in Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The last two places represent part of a new oilfield that may be as big or bigger than Saudi Arabia’s fields. But the real strategic interest may be not only securing those fields for Western use, but also having those bases available to be used against Iran, Pakistan and even China should the need arise.

But I think the US and its allies will have their hands full just dealing with the Taliban and Al-Queda which still present a threat.

Another strategic issue which can’t be overlooked is that these new bases are also smack in the middle of the biggest opium growing region in the world. The opium/heroin trade is estimated to be worth over $50 Billion annually, with very high profit margins for everyone involved (unlike oil!). The CIA has been known to traffic in illegal drugs as part of its dealings with rebel groups, clandestine arms shipments, and to obtain secret money for secret projects. So having the CIA back in the region means of course they’ll be siphoning off millions from the drug trade while the US government officially tries to stamp out opium production (yeah, as if).

As any think tank can tell you, the real enemy these days isn’t Russia or the Taliban or even Saddam, it’s the Chinese. All these incidents involving spying with the Chinese are reminiscent of the height of the Cold War when US and Russia were constantly stepping on each other in their quest for military secrets. This is a very real danger.

China would now rank as the #1 most powerful enemy of the US. And while we trade with them, and become ever more dependent upon their cheap goods, they become much more independent and wealthy and powerful. And of course they also are becoming even more repressive of human rights, with regular mass executions for things that would easily be dismissed with a good lawyer in the USA.

China has so many people, rapidly diminishing resources, soon to be unliveable cities (the pollution is horrendous – 700 million people are now drinking water unfit for human consumption). And within a few years their needs will be overwhelming as they become a country of consumers following the American model. Can you imagine a country with a billion cars? It’s going to happen. And it won’t be pretty. And there are either going to be some major changes in China, or China will bring about major changes to the rest of the planet. It’s only a matter of time.

What happens between the US and the Middle East is very important to China too, as it becomes more dependent on oil to keep its economy running smooth. If the US hadn’t gone into those countries, we would have NO presence around that new oil field, only the Russians and Chinese would. So now we are all there, and I say, LOOK OUT!

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 14792

Something in my heart

Dear old hippy,
hello my name is kimber and i am 17 years old. A lot of my friends
have left town to join a thing called the renaissance festival. Right
now it is in arizona I really want to join but everyone thinks it is a
bad idea since you live out of a tent and it doesn’t pay well. I also
have considered dropping out of school because i am getting really
antcy to go and join. My dad thinks I should go to college and get a
nice home grow up and raise a family. The only thing is I don’t want
to live a normal life I want to be free to be my self and try somthing
most people don’t get to experience. I still plan on going no matter I
have my parents blessing or not but how can I make them understand, I
don’t want to leave and everyone think I was just trying to escape.
It is something in my heart.


Dear Kimber,
I think the Renaissance Festivals are cool! You really get to leave
the material lifestyle and explore a completely different way of living.
Like a gypsy. This is very close to the hippy lifestyle. You’ll meet some
interesting people and learn about all sorts of alternative things. If your
friends are going, then it’s better since you won’t be on your own. I don’t
think any harm will come to you if you’re smart.

But convincing your parents of this is another story. Just remember
that doing this doesn’t exclude you from going to college and having a
family. If you feel in your heart that this is right, and you don’t go,
then you’ll wish you had done it the rest of your life. Like I had the
chance to do Woodstock and didn’t. How do you think I feel now?

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 14120

The true meaning of Hippy

Dear Old Hippy,
First of all , i would like to point out that it is rad the way you help out the younger generation, and care about us.
But what i am confused about , is who i really am. I am told that i am a hippy , and i’m ‘all for’ the peace, love, happiness and freedom beliefs and i understand them fully. But, i still do not know the true meaning of a hippy. It seems that everyone has their own version. I understand that the world needs changing but i do not know who i am and what i can do about it. please help and be kind enough to answer my questions.
What is a hippy?
And am i one?
Also, everyone says that the governments should be abolished. I can see why, but wouldn’t this encourage more violence because there would be no one there to stop them?. And that is the last thing i want – violence and trouble.

Please be kind enough to reply.
peace, love and happiness.
From a 17 year old english guy called, Dave

Dear Dave,
Fear begets violence. Fear is perpetrated by governments and other institutions (churches are another good example) that try to control your mind. Free your mind and Free your fears. Then YOU will be in control. Then you won’t need others telling you what to think and do. I recommend you read the Way of the Hippy to find out what a hippy is.

– The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 33121


My horrible diet

Dear Old Hippy,
I am toxic. I have been on one large binge for the past three years. I
have gained about 60 pounds and I am sick and tried (literally). I want
to go back to being a vegetarian, but my life is full with meat and meat
eaters. I have been having a series of headaches, fatigue, and not so
frequent bowl movements. I have been to my doctor, and she said it was
my horrible diet, but I am other wise healthy. How can I cleanse my
body and start my new diet safely and on a low budget . Please Help!!!

You sound like you’re eating the typical American diet. This usually consists
of fast foods, fried foods, excessive protein, too many sweets and ice cream,
and a lack of fresh fruit and vegetables. These are comfort foods that fill you up,
make you fat, and in combination with a lack of exercise eventually lead to ill health.

The best way to start is to begin replacing red meat dishes with
substitutes. They don’t even have to be vegetarian at first. More fish
and chicken grilled or baked, without adding any fat. No deep fried foods,
cook them another way. No gravies or heavy sauces. Between meals snack
on fruits and veggies. These will help fill you up so you don’t eat as
much food at mealtime. Always have a salad course with dinner.

Whole grains and legumes are the start to a vegetarian diet. Don’t
forget tofu and TVP (texturized Vegetable Protein) – a soybean product that
looks and has the texture of meat. You can substitute these things for meat
in your recipes. They take some getting used to, but you feel SO GOOD when
you eat them. Stop drinking sodas! Make your own ice teas (black or
herbal) and get used to drinking them with little or no sugar, tastes great! –
this will save you big bucks too. And no more FAST FOOD, OK?

Getting others to accept these dietary changes is more difficult.
That’s why you must do a little at a time, not all at once. The place to
begin is the supermarket. Start reading those labels and see what’s inside
those prepackaged food. Once you start, you become slightly obsessed since
everything packaged has lots of additives. If you don’t know what
you’re eating – DON’T EAT IT! Yes, packaged products and fast food save time,
but so what? Cooking should be a joyful experience and it’s the only way to know
just what your getting! Once you’ve reached the limits of
supermarket food, find the Health Food Store nearest you and discover all the
wonderful vegetarian products available. Organic produce and bulk items are
their specialties. For more info about vegetarianism and recipes visit Hippyland’s Vegetarian Page.

Once you get used to making minor changes here and there, you’ll
notice major changes in how you feel. Once the weather starts getting nicer
get that exercise you need outdoors.

A Santé! (to your health!)
-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 20649

How do you get a commune together?

Dear Old Hippy,
I was just wondering how would you get a commune together? And where would
you make it? What would you need and what really is it all about? Thanx!!
Peace, love and light,

A commune is a commitment to a specific way of life and a commitment to other people. It’s sorta like a marriage, but with lots of other people involved. It’s an extended family. Within a commune you get to set the goals and rules for a whole community. It’s needed by people who feel society’s goals and rules don’t fit their own. Rather than compromise one’s life for the sake of a lifestyle you can’t abide, you get to try your own ideas in a private utopia.

Starting a commune is no small task. You can’t just say I’m going to start a commune and viola! you have instant commune. The first hurdle is finding like-minded people to join you. You would have to have some friends or people you’ve already spent some time with and shared ideas. You would all have to agree on which principles your commune would be started. Right there you might run into trouble, but that is part of the process. The entire commune experience is an ongoing process. You would all have to commit to the process. The process is usually a very democratic one where consensus is used in decision-making.

However many communes have a very strong leader with a vision, and the members heed this person’s will. I have heard many horror stories of communes where one leader issued the orders and used all sorts of methods to achieve compliance. Let’s see, there’s Guyana (Jim Jones), Waco, Heaven’s Gate (the internet comet cult), that Swiss one, plus many others that haven’t ended in mass suicide, just mind control, sex control, dicipline by fear, etc. It’s a fine line between a commune and a cult, especially with a powerful charismatic leader whose authority is unquestioned. So I hereby warn those who would follow such a person. Much better to find a commune where there is no central authority figure, and power is shared equally among the members (good luck!).

The second hurdle is finding a place for the commune. Actually a commune can be anywhere, even in the middle of a city, depending upon those principles discussed earlier. If you’re a back-to-nature type you’d probably like to be out in the country somewhere. You’d could buy or lease an old farm, one where there hasn’t been too much soil contamination (again good luck). Old farms usually have lots of out buildings that can be usefully adapted to commune living. Old farms have another advantage, they’re old. That means they’re cheaper to rent or buy, and the commune can fix up the buildings.

It’s good to be in an area where the surrounding community won’t immediately be against you. It takes years to build trust in farm communities, and it would be easier if you had a measure of acceptance to begin. This would be the case if there is another good commune in the area. Some places where there are lots of communes are Oregon, and Tennessee. Of course there are many other places, and some communes are so low key, the neighbors might not even know it’s not a family.

I recommend if you are serious about starting a commune you go visit one, and maybe live there for awhile. This way you can really checkout the lifestyle, the commitment it entails and whether you could really dig it. In any case you would learn a lot, and maybe get some good ideas for your own commune. You can also get some ideas by reading up on Utopias and learn more about the philosophy behind the communal concept. Check out the Farm’s website to see how one of the more successful communes did it! You can also visit our Communal Living Forum and discuss this with others who’ve lived on communes. A good resource for finding existing communes is the Intentional Communities Website.

Have fun!

– The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 74971

Where do I start?

Dear Old Hippy,
Ever since I was small, I have felt extremely attached to life. I was a
really big tomboy so I am not one to get all mushy like some girls but
does no one else get emotional when they are given their factory
processed meat on a styrofoam plate? Does no one else get furious when
they see all those starving babies on the news? Does no one else want to
scream at the rich, What do you need all that for? Give a little, you
selfish bastards? Does no one else see all the mazes of wonderment in a
tiny leaf or a piece of grass? Does no one else cry when it finally hits
them that they are not God and cannot save the world? Am I crazy? I used
to think that the fact that I feel SO MUCH was a gift, like a reminder
that I was put here for a reason and that reason was to change the world
but lately, I think of it as a curse. It is pointless to feel because it
is impossible to accomplish such enormous dreams. I hear people all the
time talk about how the sixties were so great because of the drugs and
music and hugs but it was more than that. It was the fact that you all
DID something about the bad things in life. I mean, you had a bloody war
and a lot of discrimination but at least you stood up. My generation
has even more reasons to band together (the ecology, the economy, a
bastard president, crime, starving children, etc.) but we do not. We
have no desire to- we are apathetic, do not care, are too lazy. How am I
supposed to save a world that will not listen? Where do I start? And am
I alone, just some crazy fool who is arrogant enough to think that she
was chosen out of millions to be given such a mission,someone who is
stupid enough to cry at the beauty of a tree? In your time, you did
something but instead of leading us, the hippies have quieted when we
most need advice from those with experience. Why will they not help us?
Maybe they just realize how futile it all is.
A lonely fool who calls herself Pixie

Dear Pixie,
You appear to be a very sensitive being. You are aware of what is going on around you. You are passionate about doing something to change it. You are a hippy!

Unfortunately, some of us have been co-opted by the establishment and have become part of it. Some of us have realized that it’s all Maya – the illusion, the veil. Beyond Maya is the truth of reality. In which case all you can do is your dharma, live out your life according to your inner rules.

Don’t get caught up in the play to where you feel like your role is scripted for you. You are the actor, the writer, and the director in your own play. Your role is one you choose. You can be the hippy who sets out to change the world. Whether you succeed depends upon how true you are to THE TRUTH. Go with the flow and you will have a much easier time of it. Your dharma will guide you. If these concept appeal to you, or for more information about them, check out Be Here Now or Grist for the Mill, both by Ram Dass. These ideas help you deal with the inner turmoil and make sense of the suffering inherent in the world.

Lest you think we’ve all dropped out or are living in caves in the Himalayas, we old hippies are still around and are eager to lend a hand. Yes, we are dis-“illusioned”. We are aware of the futility of “fighting the system”. But we do support organizations like Greenpeace, Sierra Club, Earth First! and Norml. We help out in our communities in our own ways by recycling, community organizations, volunteering, etc. The key to all of this is ORGANIZATION. The hippies were never really organized. Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman tried to organize the more radical hippies into Yippies and they got thrown in jail. The Weathermen, an extreme organization that bombed banks and corporations blew themselves up and the rest went underground for decades.

Unfortunately, it seems without a major issue to unite us, most hippies would just as soon lay back, turn up the Zep, and light a doobie. But if YOU feel strongly about something and want to get involved, read some of the articles we have posted here under the Activism topic. You can also check out our Activism page, which has links to some of the best activism sites on the net. You can discuss activism in our Hip Forums (see the Protest Forum, the Politics Forum and others.)

Posted by: skip
Views: 15927