Mod+ Psychedelics & other mind altering substances -> Culture, Theology and Therapy [Resources]

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Sciborg_S_Patel

Having a friend stay at my place who's an apprentice medicine man. This involves lots of medicine plants, meditation, rituals, and other things I've never tried. He had a lot of interesting things to say, none of which I can confirm (but I also wouldn't reject these claims):

-The first ayahuasca trip is awful. Lots of purging, all your demons confront you. (Clearly this kind of thing isn't for everyone!)

-Memories of the past, including one from when he was a toddler and had to confirm with his mother, and "memories" of a future event where he meets people he's met before.

-As time isn't what we think it is there's no reason to fear death, yet every moment in this world should be regarded as precious.

-He's felt like he's seeing some hints of higher dimensions. He described it as seeing the 3-D surface of the world and then seeing what lies beyond it. But he did mention he doesn't have too many visions of other realities, though he did mention snakes and DNA.

-He smoked some kind of ground up spider (whoah) and felt like there was connection to some kind of extra-dimensional arachnid type entities. He said he could also see how this reality was woven.
 
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/10/b...d-concerns-as-a-treatment-for-depression.html
Special K, a Hallucinogen, Raises Hopes and Concerns as a Treatment for Depression
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It is called ketamine — or Special K, in street parlance.

While it has been used as an anesthetic for decades, small studies at prestigious medical centers like Yale, Mount Sinai and the National Institute of Mental Health suggest it can relieve depression in many people who are not helped by widely used conventional antidepressants like Prozac or Lexapro.

And the depression seems to melt away within hours, rather than the weeks typically required for a conventional antidepressant.

But some psychiatrists say the drug has not been studied enough to be ready for use outside of clinical trials, and they are alarmed that clinics are springing up to offer ketamine treatments, charging hundreds of dollars for sessions that must be repeated many times.
 
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The Ayahuasca Experience

Within less than an hour after drinking the brew, the visual landscape begins to change. Usually people see particles of light and color in the ceremonial space, with eyes open or closed. The air begins to sparkle, as though the darkness of night is finely perforated, and little points of radiance are glowing through. At the same time, you will likely feel a sensation of stirring within you. The body begins to feel fluid, more expansive. There is a sense of imminence, of something on the way to you. By this point the shaman is humming, whistling or singing, and the spirit of the medicine is pouring into the ceremonial space. You may experience a generalized sensation of acceleration. In fact, there is something familiar about this, as though you “know” it, even if you have never drunk before. We recognize the infinite mind and spirit within and without us, and this recognition lies at the heart of the psychedelic experience.

The “getting off” period may be gentle and slow, or somewhat intense and fast, depending on you, the night, and the strength and quantity of the brew. For most people most of the time, the lift-off is gradual. As this occurs, you may possibly feel a sense of apprehension. This is a common experience, and most of the time it dissipates. This is an intermediary experience between your normal waking consciousness and sense of personal self, and the vast, multi-dimensional, non-ordinary reality that you are moving into. You are entering another world.

As you approach inter-dimensional consciousness, you may encounter vivid, challenging or even outright scary sensations or visions. You may even see a guardian figure of some kind, directly in your way. This is fairly common to psychedelic experiences. Any apprehension you may feel is due to a sense of dissolution of the self. The guardian, often referred to as the dweller on the threshold, embodies your fears of the unknown. You cannot remain as you know yourself to be in ordinary waking consciousness and simultaneously merge into non-ordinary reality.

Psychedelics are ego-flattening agents by nature, and the sense of losing yourself, or dissolving or breaking into infinite bits can be scary. If this apprehension occurs, and it likely will at some point, breathe slowly and deeply without force, letting the breath out and fully relaxing as you exhale. This is usually sufficient to move you through this initial period. But you will experience more dissolution of the self as ceremony goes on. That is the nature of the medicine. It dissolves, and it reintegrates.

The flip side of this possible entrance into the realm of non-ordinary reality is that you may from the very beginning be so suffused with a sense of wonder, that your experience throughout your ayahuasca journey may be delightful from beginning to end. That does happen. Ayahuasca journeying is an endeavor with many variations.

As time progresses, both physical sensations and visual experiences typically intensify.

There is a geometry common to the ayahuasca experience, and this geometry is beautifully represented in the textiles and ceramics of the Shipibo and Ashaninka native people of Peru.
 
http://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-...ms-found-growing-in-Buckingham-Palace-gardens
'Magic Mushrooms' Found Growing at Buckingham Palace

Celebrity horticulturist Alan Titchmarsh has found a variety of mushroom known for its hallucinogenic effect growing in the Queen's garden at Buckingham Palace.

The TV gardener, along with ecologist Professor Mick Crawley, was looking at the different species of plants and flowers growing in the 40 acre plot when he spotted the vibrant red and white mushroom called Amanita muscaria, more commonly known as fly mushroom.

"It's eaten in some cultures for its hallucinogenic effects. But it also makes people who eat it very sick.

"The old-fashioned thing to do was feed it to the village idiot, then drink his urine because you get all the high without any of the sickness.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Marijuana growers sprout on Wall Street as pot goes public

Derek Peterson may soon become the first CEO of a public company that cultivates, distributes and sells marijuana.

Terra Tech Corp., based in Irvine, California, won approval last week from the Securities and Exchange Commission to raise $6.8 million to build and operate medical marijuana operations in Nevada, where the company secured preliminary approvals.

The company will seek to raise about $7 million more later in the year, Peterson said...
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

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Sciborg_S_Patel

Why the Silk Road Trial Matters

Ulbricht, 29, faces charges that include running a narcotics, hacking, and money laundering conspiracy, as well as a “kingpin” charge usually reserved for mafia dons and drug lords. The case against him is likely strong; prosecutors already have shown in pre-trial hearings that they caught Ulbricht with his laptop seemingly logged into a Silk Road page called “Mastermind,” showing a detailed accounting of the site’s activities and finances. They’ve also revealed that they found a logbook on his hard drive and a journal that allegedly detailed his day-to-day activities running the site. (Stringer Bell was right, by the way: Don’t take notes on your criminal conspiracy.)

But Ulbricht’s defense team, led by renowned terrorism-case defense attorney Joshua Dratel and financed in part by donations from bitcoin mogul Roger Ver, won’t make it easy for prosecutors. We may see a lively, dramatic and precedent-setting trial. Here are a few reasons to follow it closely.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

As always, check out sites like Neurosoup and How to Use Psychedelics for safe use.
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Reality and the Psychedelic Experience

The experience threw a sparklyspanner in the cognitive machinery, forcing me to go back to basic assumptions in my thought processes. Philosophy begins with these basic questions of knowing and being. In classical Western philosophy, epistemology is the study of knowing, and ontology is the study of being. How could I say that an experience I just had was both patently absurd, and more real than real, at the same time?
The ontological status of psychedelic experience—the reality question—pervades psychonautic experience and hence psychedelic research. Was that real? What is reality? What, “really,” is a hallucination? What can we learn from profoundly altered perception of both the world around us and of the mind manifesting in extremely novel ways? Is reality a simple given, or are we complicit in its construction? As Robert Anton Wilson quipped, “Reality is the line where rival gangs of shamans fought to a standstill.”

To argue about what reality is or isn’t, when reality is the standard by which we decide what is and what isn’t, is a slippery proposition, as circular and self-referential as consciousness attempting to study itself. And who is the authority on what is real?
For my own purposes, I differentiate between the armchair traveler, who writes about the territory based solely on the reports of others, never having made the trip him- or herself; the tourist, who goes once or twice and is found in a state of “Oh Wow” and declaring authority (like a person who has spent a week in Paris, certain they know the city intimately); commuters, who have traveled many times, usually with some purpose in mind; and expatriates, who have relinquished citizenship in the default world and lose their basis and means of comparison, as Lilly suggests. Permanent or near permanent residency has its risks, as can be seen in Marcia Moore’s experience with ketamine, ending in death (M. Moore and H. Alltounian 1978). Lilly himself became for a period a resident of the ketamine world, including a close call of near-drowning.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Damn....another thread devoured.

Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/
Psychedelic Spiritual Experience—An Integral View

Some knowledgeable writers on the subject, such as religious scholar Houston Smith, argue that the nonordinary states induced by psychedelics are largely identical to the classic categories of mysticism. In my experience, however, while there is some overlap between mystical and psychedelic states, the special quality and variety of psychedelic experience warrants its classification as a distinct form of spiritual experience.

Also, as with mystical experience, the spiritual content of psychedelic experience often serves as a kind of Rorschach test for one’s spiritual belief system. Such experiences are frequently interpreted in terms corresponding to a particular spiritual teaching about ultimate reality. But despite this tendency, I believe it is possible to use the common features of these experiences to broaden our understanding of the reality of spirit.

Mystical experiences have been overly universalized by commentators seeking to interpret a wide variety of distinct encounters with the transcendent as experiences of essentially the same thing. By contrast, psychedelic experiences have been overly particularized by claims that such experiences are unique for each person and highly susceptible to contextual influences, known as “set and setting.” Yet even though set and setting are important, the experiences produced by various psychedelic substances are relatively predictable and crossculturally similar. And this commonality is reinforced by the fact that different psychedelic substances produce reliably distinct spiritual experiences, especially when such substances are taken with a sacramental intention.
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20 Safety Suggestions for Participating in Ceremonies That Use Psychoactive Substances

Once-secretive rituals involving Ayahuasca have recently become more accessible. While these experiences can offer profound spiritual revelations, members of our community have become increasingly concerned about reports of ceremonial leaders sexually assaulting female participants.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

I largely agree with this, though I do worry about someone having a bad trip and hurting others:

Using Psychedelics Shouldn't Be a Crime

"One sign of the momentum for psychedelic policy reform is the launch of an annual event this Sunday, September 20, by a group of organizations calling themselves the 920 Coalition. The 920 event seeks to educate people about the historical, medicinal and therapeutic uses of psilocybin mushrooms.

How many more years will have to go by in which people who use psychedelics are stigmatized, marginalized, and living a shadow identity that doesn’t speak to their full truth, living in fear of being labelled a criminal though they don’t cause harm to others? We can end the criminalization of people who use psychedelics – if we want to."
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Damn....another thread devoured.

Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/
Why is the US Disregarding Plants Like Iboga & Kratom in the Fight to Stop ODs & Addiction?

Like many of the most-known psychedelic drugs – LSD, psilocybin, ayahuasca – ibogaine has long been used as an adjunct to psychotherapy and other therapeutic modalities. Ibogaine, however, is rarely used as a recreational drug, due to the overpowering intensity and long duration of its effects, often lasting 24-48 hours.

The U.S. is one of only a few countries where ibogaine is prohibited. In some countries, it’s administered in hospitals, medical centers, retreats, and private therapeutic practices. While only two governments have officially designated ibogaine as a recognized medical treatment (New Zealand and the Brazilian state ofSão Paulo), in most other places it remains unscheduled. Gabon, in fact, embraces iboga and Bwiti as part of their national culture. Since it’s classified as a Schedule I drug in the U.S., people who struggle with problematic drug use often seek out underground providers or international clinics for ibogaine treatment.

Fortunately there are some signs of hope stateside. In both Vermont and in New York State, legislators have introduced bills to facilitate research evaluating ibogaine’s effectiveness in treating addiction to heroin and other opiates. Meanwhile,MAPS is sponsoring research evaluating the long-term effects of ibogaine treatment on patients undergoing therapy at treatment centers in Mexico and New Zealand.

(These developments will be a focus of this month’s Global Ibogaine Conference, where I will be joined by hundreds of experts and will speak about potential regulatory frameworks for ibogaine and how it fits in the broader context of drug policy reform.)

Kratom is quite different from ibogaine, but unfortunately prohibitionist policies are also limiting its potential as an addiction treatment. For millennia, kratom has been used as a folk remedy in southeast Asia, where it is traditionally popular among day laborers and has long been used as a replacement therapy for people struggling with opiate addiction. Kratom leaves can be chewed fresh, or dried and consumed in powder, tea or bar form. In small doses, it can have stimulant-like effects, and in larger quantities it acts as a sedative.

Side effects of kratom are minimal and a briefing paper by the International Drug Policy Consortium and Transnational Institute notes that kratom’s withdrawal symptoms are weak and nearly inconsequential compared to the suffering of people trying to quit opiates or amphetamines.

In an unfortunate and absurd twist, kratom has recently been swept up in the ongoing hysteria around new psychoactive substances like “bath salts” and synthetic cannabinoids. Some lawmakers in states such as Florida and New York are now seeking to ban kratom entirely.

Instead of prohibiting kratom and relegating it to the illicit market, what’s needed is appropriate regulation – such as product labeling requirements, as well as marketing, branding and retail display restrictions, which are long proven to reduce youth access and substance misuse.

Kratom and ibogaine are two tools – along with 911 Good Samaritan laws, naloxone access reforms, supervised injection facilities, various forms of maintenance therapy, and, of course, ending the criminalization of drug use – that should be part of the discussion when it comes to dealing with addiction and skyrocketing rates of overdose deaths.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Damn....another thread devoured.

Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/

Check out this highly controversial documentary, The Reality of Truth Film, featuring Michelle Rodriguez, Deepak Chopra and many more as they share their experiences with ayahuasca, plant medicine, and meditation.

The film follows the creation of Rythmia, the health resort in Costa Rica that has the first medical license to offer ayahuasca and san pedro. Evolver is partnering with Rythmia to present a series of talks and workshops featuring transformational thought leaders.

The film also features top thought leaders including Deepak Chopra, Ram Dass, Marianne Williamson, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, and hosted by Mike “Zappy” Zapolin, the film explores how to access the true reality through plant medicine, Ayahuasca and meditation. It includes first of its kind interviews with top spiritual gurus, celebrities, and people of all faiths, about this intriguing connection and their personal experiences with spirituality and transcendence.

The Reality of Truth is available to stream for FREE in exchange for a Facebook share from June 17 – July 4
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel


"What's In My Baggie?" is a documentary on the rise of misrepresented substances, as well as a critique of ineffective drug policy.

For more info, visit whatsinmybaggie.com
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel


Katherine MacLean, PhD’s ground-breaking research on psilocybin and personality change suggests that this class of medicines may play an important role in enhancing mental health and creativity throughout the lifespan.

Katherine MacLean, PhD. is an academically trained research scientist with a long-standing interest in the neural correlates of consciousness and the science of well-being.

As a postdoctoral research fellow and faculty member at Johns Hopkins University, she was one of the lead scientists and session guides studying the effects of high doses of psilocybin and other psychedelic compounds in healthy adults.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at ted.com/tedx
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Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/


"What's In My Baggie?" is a documentary on the rise of misrepresented substances, as well as a critique of ineffective drug policy.

For more info, visit whatsinmybaggie.com
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

How LSD and shrooms could help treat anxiety, addiction, and depression

Here’s what we know: In supervised lab studies, psychedelic drugs like psilocybin and LSD seemed to produce psychological or mystical experiences so powerful that they could help treat conditions like end-of-life anxiety, depression, addiction, and obsessive compulsive disorder.

But the research on these drugs is still very preliminary. The very few studies that have been done have a major limitation: Their sample sizes tend to be so small that it's very difficult to say if the findings are real or unbiased. That will require much more research to know for sure.
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Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/


"What's In My Baggie?" is a documentary on the rise of misrepresented substances, as well as a critique of ineffective drug policy.

For more info, visit whatsinmybaggie.com[/QUOTE]
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Iboga Healing and the Collective Unconscious

It’s not like a psychedelic experience is easy to forget. You can blast into ineffable bliss, drop into the pit of Hell, have long talks with the lizard people, or just deeply recall that yes, all you really do need is love. And then you return to the vibrational backwater we call Consensus Reality. The memory fades, and those secrets of the universe that were so important are now at risk of being filed in your brain as just one more episode of “that crazy night on ayahuasca.” Does that the genie have to go that far back into the bottle?

And it is not just the spiritual information that sometimes falls foul of the return trip. The emotional healing of plant medicines and psychedelics can also wilt under the sensory barrage of regular life that Shakespeare called “the wreckful siege of battering days.” In a culture where you can still go to jail just for taking spiritual medicine it’s no surprise if the subsequent healing process gets lost, and your inner system reverts back to its pre-psychedelic setting.

Now meet Josie, who shows there is nothing inevitable about this. Josie took ibogaine, which besides making you trip a very long time, has the peculiar chemical aside of helping you get off drugs, especially opiates. In the post-ibogaine work Josie and I did together, she didn’t just elude that Great Forgetting, she reached back into her iboga experience and reignited its healing process.
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Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/


"What's In My Baggie?" is a documentary on the rise of misrepresented substances, as well as a critique of ineffective drug policy.

For more info, visit whatsinmybaggie.com
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel


UK author Simon G. Powell takes a look at the resurgence of scientific interest in psilocybin (the active ingredient of psychedelic mushrooms), in particular the work being done by the Heffter Research Institute. Archive footage is shown of LSD research in the 1950s and 1960s, and the anti-psychedelic media propaganda that was eventually used to quell the growing popularity of recreational LSD use. Includes exclusive interview material with Dennis McKenna, Roland Griffiths, David Nichols, and Bill Linton (all of the Heffter) along with archive clips of Timothy Leary. The film explores the importance of the psilocybin experience and the pressing issue of extending its legitimate use toward healthy people. Special attention is given to the potential eco-psychological impact of psilocybin.

http://www.simongpowell.com
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Note -> In case you're thinking of using psychedelics, definitely read up on safe use at Neurosoup:

http://www.neurosoup.com/


"What's In My Baggie?" is a documentary on the rise of misrepresented substances, as well as a critique of ineffective drug policy.

For more info, visit whatsinmybaggie.com
 
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