Dr Albert Hoffmann and Goa Gil
It all started for me in 1965 when I was 14, there were some of us musicians and we used to sit on the sidewalk outside the psychedelic shop on the corner of Haite and Ashbury, San Francisco. In 1966 I was in a group that included Janis Joplin, and then with another group that became “Steppin Wolf”. After that I started to work for “The Family Dog” which was a group of freaks who made the first parties in San Francisco. Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company were like the house band. There was this explosion of awareness that hit so many young people which became the whole 60’s movement, the scene was new and everybody was so innocent, it was the first time it was being done, and there was something really magical happening. It ended in the summer of ’69 when the Rolling Stones played a free concert in San Francisco and one guy got killed in front of the stage. That was the moment the bubble burst. Everything changed after that. Nixon was President, Reagan was the Governor of California, and all over the world people had had enough. Some people stayed on in San Francisco and became yuppies, some moved off and made communes as they no longer wanted to live in the cities. Many people came to India on a spiritual trip.
In 1970 I found myself on a beach in Goa; where the psychedelic revolution was allowed to mutate and grow without government and media pressures and we synthesized a new lifestyle. We assimilated the simple life with the spiritual traditions of the East, knowing that it leads towards peace of mind. We put it together with our art, ideas, music and hippie culture. Then for many years I was in yoga sadhana, doing kriyas, pranayama, meditating for long hours several times a day, living in the jungle. I see myself as a link between the yogis of the Himalayas and being here. I began to understand how high you can really take people with music; you can give them a spiritual experience. You can take them to divine places, uplift their consciousness, open them up and give them a transfer of this power.
Dance is active meditation, when we dance we go beyond thought, beyond mind, and beyond our own individuality - to become one in the divine ecstasy of union with the cosmic spirit. This is the essence of the trance dance experience. I always said a Goa party is not a disco under the coconut trees, it is an initiation. That’s why we created our own sound, our own vibe, which has now spread all over the world. We are using it to set off a chain reaction in consciousness. This is what we call redefining the ancient tribal ritual for the twenty first century. Hopefully people become more sensitive and aware of themselves, of their surroundings and the needs of the planet. With this awareness comes understanding and compassion. That is the need of the hour and the true Goa spirit. Goa is not just a place; it’s a state of mind. What I’m doing now comes directly out of what happened to me in the 60’s. It’s natural and all fits together. It’s just been one evolution, everything’s connected.
May the light of love shine in your hearts and in your minds and may you always walk in peace.
Watch Liquid Crystal Vision
Goa Gil is a recognized sadhu, a trance DJ, and is featured in the movies “Last Hippie Standing” and “Liquid Crystal Vision”. He is also included in the Book of the Hippies