This is not a direct quote, but what I can remember of the general idea:

Humans have the sense of sight to see things around us, so we would of the presence of some larger being as such. However, plants don't have the sense to detect our presence, so cannot sense our being there. What if we lack a sense that detects the presence of other being around us? We may indeed be lacking a sense that would allow us to sense the presence of something larger around us.

I think it may have been a man called Joe Rogan but I can't find anything online, does anyone know?

  • 2
    This is probably as old as philosophy. May 27, 2012 at 10:17
  • No it's not, the man who came up with it isn't old.
    – ODP
    May 27, 2012 at 10:38
  • I meant to say that the man you are looking for is very likely not the one who came up with the idea for the first time. May 27, 2012 at 10:40
  • Why do you think that?
    – ODP
    May 27, 2012 at 10:41
  • 1
    I changed the tags to reference request, as we currently allow questions of that nature. But we don't typically allow "what do you think of it? Good idea? Bad idea?"-type questions unless you show a lot of development to support a claim or idea you've made. Simply pointing out a concept and asking what people think about it doesn't quite cut it. It is possible to ask these types of questions in a correct way though: see Good Subjective, Bad Subjective
    – stoicfury
    Jun 19, 2012 at 22:36

1 Answer 1


I'm pretty sure you're looking for Joe Rogan, the "comedian", "actor", and UFC fight commentator. He brings this up in the context of his DMT trips.

Rogan's notion is a result of his drug induced mystical experiences. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy gives the following general definition of mystical experience:

A (purportedly) super sense-perceptual or sub sense-perceptual experience granting acquaintance of realities or states of affairs that are of a kind not accessible by way of sense perception, somatosensory modalities, or standard introspection.

Judging what little I've heard from him, this is essentially what Rogan is after.

Insofar as you're mostly concerned with the question of perception, Hume poses relevant philosophical questions in §II of An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding. (E.g., "The Missing Shade of Blue", which might suggest that we could infer the presence of such a being without being able to sense it.) To explore contemporary philosophical treatments of this field, look to philosophy of perception.

Insofar as you're more interested in the mystical dimensions of the notion, William James' Varieties of Religious Experience is probably the best place to start; it is a seminal text for modern philosophy of mystical experience, and is a joy to read. Perusing the above linked article on SEP will indicate directions in contemporary philosophy.

  • @Olly Price Glad I could help. I should have mentioned Benjamin Paul Blood. He's awesome and wrote an essay called "The Anesthetic Revelation" in which he concocts a sort of mystified hegelian vocabulary in order to discuss his ether-induced revelation of those greater beings of which you speak. (James mentioned him in his "Varieties of Religious Experience").
    – Shon
    Jun 20, 2012 at 6:38

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