Erik Davis: The Revelation of Phillip K. Dick

(From a Lecture during an event for The Exegesis of PKD @The Ecology, Cosmos & Consciousness Salon, The October Gallery, London, 10th July 2013)

Besides being arguably America’s most important science fiction writer, Philip K. Dick also experienced a fascinating and uniquely documented series of extraordinary experiences that he named “2/3/74.” These experiences partake equally of religious revelation, psychotic break, scripted fabulation, and paranormal event.

Dick’s enormous hand-written Exegesis, which endlessly rehashed the meaning of 2/3/74, gives us an unusual opportunity to understand how one of the most unusual and prophetic minds of the postwar era tried to mint metaphysical meanings out of our polyglot, paranoid, cybernetic zeitgeist.

Erik Davis is an author, award-winning journalist, speaker and teacher based in San Francisco. He is the author, most recently, of Nomad Codes: Adventures in Modern Esoterica. He also wrote The Visionary State: A Journey through California’s Spiritual Landscape, and TechGnosis: Myth, Magic, and Mysticism in the Age of Information.

His essays on music, media, technoculture, and spirituality have appeared in dozens of books, and he has contributed to scores of publications, including Aeon.com, Bookforum, Wired, Salon, Slate, the LA Weekly, and the Village Voice. He explores the “cultures of consciousness” on his weekly podcast Expanding Mind, and recently completed his PhD in religious studies at Rice University.