In March 1966, John Lennon read the line “Whenever in doubt, turn off your mind, relax, float downstream” in a book called The Psychedelic Experience: A Manual Based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead by Timothy Leary, Richard Alpert, and Ralph Metzner, which he consumed in one sitting in a London bookshop called the Indica.
The line stuck a chord with him so much that he pulled it almost word-for-word and used it as the opening lyric for a song that he’d been writing called Mark 1 – later, Tomorrow Never Knows – the phenomenal closing track to the Beatles’ 1966 classic, Revolver.
For Lennon, the line was the perfect embodiment of what it meant to take LSD (which he had recently become infatuated with), and obviosuly, this was the intention of Leary et al. when they themselves pulled it from The Tibetan Book of the Dead. It was very much a precursor to the 60s counter-culture phrase “Turn on, tune in, drop out” (also coined by Leary).
But, drugs aside, it’s compelling counsel in its own right – the only questions that remains is how exactly do you “turn off your mind”. Your boy Moby is here to help out.
Here’s a 4 hour album of ambient music recorded by Moby for when you do yoga, sleep, meditate, or just need to chill out.
A couple of years ago, Moby began making what he describes as “really really really quiet music to listen to when I do yoga or sleep or meditate or panic.”
Initially recorded for his own benefit (Moby has opened up a couple of times about suffering from insomnia), he ended up with over four hours of music, which he “decided to give it away.”
Titled, Long Ambient, the album is all spacious synths and ambient magic, very much in the vein of Brian Eno.
“It’s really quiet,” Moby says on his website, “no drums, no vocals, just very slow calm pretty chords and sounds and things for sleeping and yoga and etc. and feel free to share it or give it away or whatever, it’s not protected or anything, or at least it shouldn’t be.”
Listen below, relax, and float downstream…