Here's what happens.
First, any given trip alleviates depression for about a month or two. That makes sense to me in a sense that the word "trip" isn't a coincidence-- a really fun intense vacation in a foreign country also alleviates depression for a month or two. You swear that when you come back things will be different, but then you have to answer slack messages at 9pm, and your project is slipping at work, and your wife is flirting with strangers every time you go to a bar, and well... in a month or two you're back to feeling exactly the same way you did before (until you take the next vacation).
Second, people who discover psychedelics go on a multiyear quest for enlightenment. They keep taking various drugs, keep feeling like they understand things better and better, get sucked into the psychedelic social vortex of other truth-seekers, and generally believe that their life is full of meaning and is going to turn around at any moment. Except by any objective measure they're still nervous wrecks-- they have every physiological symptom of stress and depression, and aside from temporary alleviation of their symptoms (see part one), they always regress to the mean.
Third, after a few years of this people eventually reach a fork. Most people realize that their psychonautic journey is at best leading them in circles, and at worst is causing their life to spiral down the drain. So they give it up, get a job without 9pm slack messages (or find a better way to adjust to stress), marry someone who isn't constantly on the verge of cheating, start doing regular exercise, and generally find a way to settle into a reasonably balanced life.
A small minority of people double down, grow out their (usually grey by then) hair down to their shoulders, go to festivals and workshops, talk of energy and chi and chakras, stare into the eyes of strangers, and touch each other's faces.
Generally speaking, I haven't run into anyone yet who found a third path. So, while I'd be the first to admit I'm wrong and celebrate if this proves to actually work, if I were a betting man I'd bet against at any reasonable odds and sleep secure in the knowledge that my money is safe.
> First, any given trip alleviates depression for about a month or two. That makes sense to me in a sense that the word "trip" isn't a coincidence-- a really fun intense vacation in a foreign country also alleviates depression for a month or two. You swear that when you come back things will be different, but then you have to answer slack messages at 9pm, and your project is slipping at work, and your wife is flirting with strangers every time you go to a bar, and well... in a month or two you're back to feeling exactly the same way you did before (until you take the next vacation
Your problems are situational, and when you remove yourself from that situation (using mushrooms or not) your life gets better and when you come back it's worse. It's not the mushrooms fault your life is a mess. Why are you answering slack messages at 9PM? Quit your job or just don't do it. Get rid of your wife if she's making you unhappy.
Do you think that maybe you should be giving your wife your attention at 9PM, rather than slack? How is this not painfully obvious?!
Some people just love misery, it's like - you have identified all your problems but rather than solve them you'll just sit around and point fingers and complain.
What did you expect? You'd take a mushroom and your wife disappears? Or transforms into a princess? You take a mushroom and your slack messages start answering themselves at 9PM?
What did you actually expect from the mushrooms?
I've taken multiple times as I find it fun to do but there was this one time I took it when I didn't feel good and just took it kinda out of boredom and it hit me in the face that I was making some major mistakes in my life and I needed to turn these around. I felt awful the entire trip but thanks to the newly gained insights I was able to actually act and change myself for the better. LSD never changed any of my problems but it made me aware what they actually were in a more concrete sense.
To put it bluntly I was unhappy without really knowing why, and after LSD I was unhappy and knowing why. I don't believe psychadelics will ever resolve your problems, you just gain new insights on your issues and it'll still be up to you - in a sober state I presume - to act on these insights.
If no one tells you this , you can't solve problem number one. Problem number one always results in no sex followed by a system break down hence the princess comment. In the western society women initiate 2/3 of the divorces.
GP is nuanced giving a helicopter view on the personal projection at hand so it doesn't dilute the actual news brought here to light . If this tone sounds offensive we could ask HN to introduce emojis.
Someone once said something about a hammer the same applies for the mushroom.
Edit: your original comment included in Turkey we have a saying.
> I am not sure his suggestion is practical
So what's your solution? Just live in misery all the time because doing the easy thing is easier than doing the correct thing? Avoid immediate discomfort in exchange for long term happiness - what terrible advice. No wonder these people are depressed.
You only get to live once, and I cant imagine anything worse than rotting away because you dont have the balls to stick up for yourself - sitting there at 9PM answering slack messages rather than just saying "I'm off the clock, go hire more people if you want 24/7 support".
Make love to her and save your marriage or break up and move on, just don't sit in resentment filled limbo, watching her clearly unhappy and flirting with other men --- then act surprised and betrayed when the thing THAT YOU CAN SEE MILES AWAY happens. He can see the unhappy future approaching and he's still not acting? Why? Because he is in love with misery like my post says.
Except when he does the mushrooms and they cheer him up a bit and give him the clarity and happiness to fix it. He still has to do it himself though
In my observation the perpetually depressed are often (no, not always, but very often) home bodies who barely leave their domicile and spend ample amounts of time on social media, staying up late mindlessly scrolling through their phones. There are simple but perhaps difficult changes to be made here.
The mushrooms fixed him for 2 or so months. During that time he should have woken up and sorted his life out. Thats enough time to start exercising, having the conversations at home and work.
You dont have to solve everything all at once, but fixing depression is a cumulative process where even small changes in diet, exercise and environment will compound over time and put you in a better place.
The mushrooms will show you the answer, but it's up to the individual to act.
Did you notice in his post he didn't describe what happened when he was cured in those two months? No, straight back to finger pointing and blaming everyone else.
He needs to hear the blunt truth : maybe, just maybe, it's his fault. Then he can take more mushrooms and work on fixing it, rather than expecting them to be a magic bullet.
It's amazing how many people casually bring up the wonders of talk therapy without noting any of the confounding factors the patient must watch for while they pay out the nose for therapy that may end up having detrimental effects. An average or worse therapist for anything but textbook cases are liable to cause more harm than good.
Most Americans are scraping by with medical, addiction, or mental issues on top of being underpaid, under educated, overworked, and priced out of necessary services like mental/health/child care, housing, and transportation.
It's no wonder so many articles and studies bemoan the current state of affairs.
If anything I think part of the value of seeking out mental healthcare is symbolic. I.E. it's so difficult and costly you convince yourself that you must really want to get better, can work hard, and that something so burdensome must work or nobody would bother with it (a sort of placebo effect). Yet it's easy to get jaded and easy to find yourself going through some ineffectual therapy at great personal cost.
I also think that people are really hung-up on two specific approaches, namely talk therapy and drugs, when they can simply not be cost-effective. It's really costly to put a specialist through years of school, and heat up those counselling offices, and all of that. If you're poor enough that money can make a HUGE impact on the diet you can afford and the exercise you can get. People seem to have this funny idea that somebody living an impoverished miserable life will be happy if somebody says some kind words to them and drugs are altering their neurotransmitter levels.
- I never thought it would cure my depression, but then again I have never seen my depression as something to be cured. It has helped me understand that my depression is a reasonable consequence of how I live my life and it also made me understand what choices I would have to make to change it.
- It never made me feel like my life is full of meaning - it actually showed me how the lack of meaning in my life is related to my depression. It also helped me understand the complexity of meaning and made it clear to me what would be needed to have a meaningful life.
- Psychedelics has not made me worse at my job, it has not caused me to spiral, it has not driven me to other drugs.
The experiences I have never once made me want to grow my hair, nor go to festivals, nor talk of energy and chi and chakras - and in general I avoid taking it with or close to other people. I don't now how you got to that at all really but I think it was bad influences in your life more than the psychedelics.
If anything my psychedelic journey has made me maybe more conservative than I used to be and I am less likely to believe in any kind of woo like chi and chakras than I was before I took it.
I would not really recommend anybody take LSD or psychedelics - but I think it have had a very positive influence on my life and if anything I regret not taking it more often.
Also became increasingly atheist & materialist after a few times. Don’t move the mental furniture around if you’re already content with the brain-room, I’d say.
I see what you mean and you're certainly right for a segment of the population that seems to get caught on the high without much skepticism of it.
That said, it is in not bullshit, and its not bullshit precisely because of what cite as being the bullshit: People take it and get the same benefit as going on a multi-week vacation. At least that can happen. Given you report your own experimentation, I'm curious if you mean psychedelics as a whole or specifically psilocybin? I'm curious of this because while I have experienced significant change in my worldview as a result of LSD trips, I had none of the same from shrooms. They're fun for sure, but I felt the next day the same I would if I spent the same time smoking cannabis. Family members of mine also have had shrooms and similarly found little to no productive value in them, but have found value in LSD. The temptation to suspect a genetic link is obvious, but of course thats just my n=1. When on LSD I tried a sort of self-therapy that seemed extremely successful, thinking through issues and considering new narratives of worldview. I've also had LSD trips where I didn't attempt such self-therapy, and found that I woke the next day feeling no different. I also tried self-therapy on shrooms and thought it was working during the trip, but woke up feeling just the same as before. So I think methodical thought through whatever is making the person feel depressed is absolutely necessary if any success is to be expected.
I suspect that many of the people who have gotten the best of the benefits of psychedelics and led successful lives are just not so vocal about it. I feel LSD has majorly helped me, but I'm really not about to go preaching that, because while it helped, it wasn't the only component. I also made the choices to use what I learned on it and change how I behave.
Think of how many people are on SSRIs that have mixed effectiveness, side-effects, and have to be taken daily. Then compare that with a treatment that you do once a month and whose main side-effect is a heightened sense of empathy. Even if it doesn't permanently get rid of depression and anxiety, and solve all of your underlying problems it's still a big step forward relative to the current state-of-the-art treatments.
I can speak to how nice it is to just feel fine for a while and get some respite from a constant feeling of fear and anxiety at everything. It's a world of difference, and could easily be the difference between someone not even being able to get out of bed, and actually taking a crack at doing things.
That's why they are trying to turn it into therapy instead of advising sick people to experiment wildly.
They know there's an effect, now they know it's safe. What's left to establish is what's the most efficient protocol for using it.
Second if we are talking recreationally I have met many, many people on a third path there: the understanding that psychedelics offer a beautiful alternate window with which to perceive things and they can tend to have a heightened awareness and appreciation while otherwise being just like many in that they answer slack messages or [insert mundane work task here].
Thirdly the mind in question is more important than psychedelics or slack messages. One can view either as a hellish prison or a wonderful gift, and in either case this perspective is likely to prove itself out. There is no magic cure to gift inner peace, nor is inner peace at all waking hours a realistic or worthwhile goal for anyone. This does not make psychedelics "bullshit," it means you need more to cultivate a rich inner life than a few altered state experiences. This should not be surprising (though to be sure it is quite often).
Fourthly, when you say:
> Most people realize that their psychonautic journey is at best leading them in circles, and at worst is causing their life to spiral down the drain. So they give it up, get a job without 9pm slack messages (or find a better way to adjust to stress), marry someone who isn't constantly on the verge of cheating, start doing regular exercise, and generally find a way to settle into a reasonably balanced life.
Have you asked these people how they came to their better life there, their job without a 9pm slack message, their healthy marriage, healthy lifestyle, etc? Many would likely attribute at least part of this found balance to their experience with psychedelics. Many people in these trials, a majority in fact, count these experiences among their top 5 most profound life experiences. That's astounding, and anecdotally I've met many more who fit that bill, and of course there are other famous cases who parrot this like Steve Jobs. Psychedelics are not an answer, but they often do illuminate where paths were previously hidden.
I believe your cynicism has sliced off only a portion of the truth here and tilted focus in the wrong directions.
I think his cynicism is completely warranted considering how many people are starting to view psychedelics as a panacea.
Do psychedelics offer an experience that could be part of, or even a spark a greater shift? Sure.
Could psychedelics provide temporary relief from things like depression and anxiety? Sure.
Do most people approach things that are talked about as a solution to life's most difficult problems in a moderate way? Very rarely.
Are there VERY REAL and SIGNIFICANT downsides to the misuse of psychedelics? Absolutely. Bad trips are very real and with real, long-term consequences.
From my experience with these substances and from my observations of many people who have also used them, I think we should approach the subject from a cautious point of view at the very least. We can throw around studies all we want, but as you pointed out, these are almost all done in a CLINICAL SETTING which is probably the most relevant aspect to the outcome of psychedelic experiences.
Fourth path: You learn what you need from it, that the world is just various inputs into your brain and gives you perspective to slow down.
As an aside, your post is full of negativity. I hope you get the help you need somewhere.
I sleep well, eat well, exercise, occasionally micro-dose, and if my brain gets in a really bad place I’ll do a huge reset trip. I’ve been doing this for 10 years and I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.
Temet Nosce - Know Thyself
Mushrooms won't fix your life. But even your anecdote suggests that they can provide a brief window of clarity. In that window, you can choose to make changes in your life, but making big changes is risky and typically quite difficult. But for folks with clinical depression, these treatments might be a game changer.
I was just listening to an interview with Dennis McKenna (brother of Terence McKenna) in which he said:
"If I'm going to take it [a psychedelic substance] I'm going to pay attention to it. It's sort of like you have an opportunity to sit with someone who's very wise and they have stuff to tell you and so they deserve that respect. That's what's changed. I give it my respect.
"And sometimes people say, well, you've been doing this 50 years haven't you got the lesson yet? .. there's one perspective that says 'once you get the message hang up the phone'.
"Well, maybe I'm a slow learner but I'm still learning from these things. They're not like an answering machine. It's not like there's only one message.
"It's like if you had a mentor, a teacher, someone who you respect you're not going to reach a point where you say, 'well, basically I've learned everything you have to tell me so thank you very much and I'll be on my way.' Chances are they still know more and they always will know more than you will know.
"Every time I take ayahuasca or mushrooms I learn something new or I am reminded of what I've forgotten, what's easy to forget in the day-to-day hustle of life. I just feel it's still valuable. In some ways it's a touchstone. It's a way of getting back to that place, that sacred space, sacred time environment where you can remind yourself of the eternal truths."
Ram Dass, in his 80's after suffering a stroke, when asked in an interview that I can't find at the moment about what LSD has done for him replied "I'm happy. I've had a stroke and I'm happy. That's LSD."
 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KGYm5OdvwNs
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dennis_McKenna
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terrence_McKenna
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ram_dass
I want to echo the sentiment of the OP - I have yet to meet someone who does not go down one of the two paths described. Either they continue to do various psychedelic substances over the years claiming to have solved all their problems while a cursory examination shows their lives continue to be a mess.... or they stop looking at it as a panacea and start making meaningful changes in their lives that actually have a long-term positive impact (this is my own experience).
I don't have a problem with using psychedelics IN A RESPONSIBLE WAY for short term relief from symptoms of a greater issue that actually requires concrete, meaningful action to address. Maybe the relief, from depression for example, is enough to find the motivation to take those actions. HOWEVER - most people tend to be very black and white in their thinking and don't see it as treating a symptom - they see it as a solution to all their problems. You see it over and over again with various approaches - fasting, keto and psychedelics being the current fads.
There is no panacea for living a healthy, fulfilling life. It takes conscious, persistent shifts on many different levels. There is no cure-all. There never has been, and never will be.
>[trip compared to] a really fun intense vacation in a foreign country also alleviates depression for a month or two
I think these two are confusing statements if read together. That being said, I think I understand what you mean.
From the info I’ve gathered, almost everybody agrees with you. It’s not a magic cure. Sure, someone might argue it is but you’ll find that person everywhere. But for someone with severe depression who can’t see beyond the wall could be really valuable experience, since otherwise couldn’t go (or even afford) going on a very intense vacation in a foreign country.
Sometimes you may need clarity to deal with the problems that otherwise depression wouldn’t let you (or wouldn’t even let you see them). But I guess (because I haven’t tried this, but read a lot) it’s all about the mindset you approach this.
I drank a beer 20 years ago and now BAM, cancer. We should ban all this cancer causing beer.
I did have some luck using mild amounts to combat the negative cognitive effects of smoking too much pot(mostly verbal deficiencies), but in the end it was better to just stop smoking pot.
I'm glad we're finally discussing the potential of psychedelics. I think they will help researchers understand what makes us who we are. I know we're better off not locking people up for using or possessing these substances. I do not think that the personal use of these drugs will notably advance society however.
That should tell you about the true nature of your motivation.
If you are only productive when you are unhappy, it likely means that you are trying to motivate yourself with negative thoughts and judging and compulsive feelings, it means you do productive things while using a stick to constantly keep yourself in fear of hitting yourself with it if you're not productive. If anything, this is the message the mushrooms are trying to tell you. But it is still up to you to change your patterns in response to that message.
"Most people realize that their psychonautic journey is at best leading them in circles, and at worst is causing their life to spiral down the drain. So they give it up, get a job without 9pm slack messages (or find a better way to adjust to stress), marry someone who isn't constantly on the verge of cheating, start doing regular exercise, and generally find a way to settle into a reasonably balanced life."
Perhaps this period of self examination is what leads so many to such similar conclusions?
I read a lot of experiences from people who went down both the paths you're talking about so I just avoided them. Rather than not using and considering it inevitable that for years I would be using psychadelics in a degenerate way. I approached them with the mindset that they are a tool to look at problems from a different perspective and accelerate certain forms of thinking. However this tool, independant of actual self-improvement, was not only useless but self-destructive.
I ended up having subjectively worse mental health after the psychadelics. Although the psychadelics were a desperation attempt in the first place so take this with a grain of salt. At the same time my life OBJECTIVELY became much better. Better diet, more exercise, more social life, stronger, more cash, all that jazz. I basically turned around a situation where I was completely trapped in poverty and despair to one where by a good number of measures I was pretty successful. So I do find it interesting to read about how people who take psychadelics are all deluded into thinking they're doing well when they're doing awfully. Since that's precisely the opposite of what I experienced.
There is also of course also doing them for the pure enjoyment of them. For example, I’d wager many people would prefer a psychedelic experience over being drunk. Much in the same way that people may prefer marijuana over alcohol.
I like to think of it as a tool that helps you get out of writers block. You still have to write once you’re unblocked; it won’t be able to write for you.
Second, you're talking about curing the disease and I agree with you 100%. I don't like or promote psychedelics but from what I understand they are in this context to be seen as solutions to symptoms much like antidepressants and pain killers where they merely give you enough breathing room to where you can focus on fixing the root cause instead of chasing after ways to alleviate symptoms.
The rest is up to you, whether it's the third path, fourth path, or the umpteenth path.
The affects on one's emotional state is surprising. Probably a good thing, but to me secondary.
Why you would suggest the gym (repetitive activity with a load of other sweaty people) is beyond me...
One of the most interesting interviews about psychedelics that I've heard is one with Stanislav Grof, who personally supervised over 4,500 LSD sessions throughout his life (many of them during his research in to its effects, back when LSD was legal) and at about 1 hour and 56 minutes in to the interview he said:
"If somebody has a bad trip that means they are dealing with a difficult aspect of their unconscious and when it's coming up, it's coming up for healing... people can benefit from bad trips. I saw many of those situations where people experience what they would be hospitalized for in the psychedelic sessions, and if we stayed with it, it would actually be a major healing, a major transformation."
I also found in my own experience that my bad trips were the ones that I learned the most from and the ones that I found the most beneficial, because they would force me to face my demons and other major issues that I would avoid facing in my sober state of consciousness.
Interestingly, the study this HN post links to seems to refer to something like this:
"Recent work has sought to develop and validate a measure that is sensitive to difficult or challenging psychedelic experiences (Barrett et al., 2016; Carbonaro et al., 2016) and there is some evidence that the intensity of such experiences is predictive of positive long-term outcomes, whereas the duration of struggle is predictive of negative outcomes (Carbonaro et al., 2016). This is presumably because the successful resolution of conflict brings with it, insight and relief, whereas the failure to breakthrough perpetuates suffering."
My impression from listening to and reading many interviews with veteran psychedelic researchers (who did studies with pretty massive doses of psychedelics back in the 60's) is that they seem to believe that an inability to "break through" was due to having too low a dose, and I wonder if that's the case in the unresolved difficult experiences this study refers to. On the other hand, too high a dose of psychedelics can result in post-trip amnesia (and current psychedlic researchers seem to be erring on the side of caution and give moderate doses). So there's probably some good middle ground.
 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3mdYUmvTeig
Giving psychedelics the psychiatric treatment and connoting that there are hard distinctions between "recreational" and "therapeutic" doses for some of these drugs fundamentally misunderstands them. I had therapeutic effects from "recreational" doses.
In that sense if you're allowing whether or not a drug is recreational to depend on a person's makeup, how could you have known I was taking a recreational dose? Could bad trips not also occur at lower doses considered sub-recreational if a person is particularly sensitive? Likewise what happens if the drug only ends up benefiting a person past the point where they also have hallucinations as a "knock-on"?
that is literally the point of a psychiatrist. there is only the law preventing psychiatrists from administering psychedelics like LSD in the same fashion. there are natural practitioners who do this for e.g. marijuana today.
if someone has an adverse reaction (bad trip) then the doctor usually alters the administration of the medicine in some manner (Lower dosage, increase dosage, change medication all together etc). but to say that there are only recreational doses for illicit drugs and there is no method to validate potency in human consumption is disingenuous.
a drug is a chemical. our body is nothing but a chain of chemical reactions. modern medicine and science has come up with a pretty good method of determining dosage
Edit: I'm not advocating recreational drug usage. Just saying, that if mum is on magic mushrooms and studies like these have established safety dosage and clear therapeutic benefits. You can't really tell your teenager that they are going to go crazy if they try some.
Caffeine and alcohol are "drugs". But they aren't drugs. In the same way, I think we'll the label released from accepted substances, while remaining attached to unacceptable ones.
In fact, I'd say LSD is used more as a party drug than it is used for anything else.
Festivals are different because there is lots of space. Clubs are too compact and contained for LSD, can make people claustrophobic.
Really? I've always found the milder claims fairly believable (fighting nausea or chronic low level pain relief). As an anecdote, I can attest to dealing with kidney stone pain well (rather than stopping the pain it reduced how much I noticed it) and it ended up more effective and felt less dangerous than the opiods I had used in the past.
Some of the more "miracle" claims, however, seem pretty suspect to me and I'd want some reliable reseach.
What makes you skeptical of so many claims?
I do agree with the parent poster about the more miraculous claims though and I think, personally those more miraculous claims create skepticism for the actual benefits.
I kind of wish everyone took a more level headed approach to drugs in general. Every drug out there has some benefits and drawbacks. Without proper study, we're potentially missing many benefits and won't fully understand all the drawbacks.
This includes approved pharmaceutical drugs too. Too many drugs get rushed out without fully understanding the side effects until people start suffering or dying.
And yes, the pain relief is very real.
† For what it's being prescribed for, I mean—pain, nausea, anxiety, etc. THC, in its function as a psychedelic, may function as a treatment for certain psychiatric disorders (i.e. for much the same purpose LSD/MDMA/etc. are being investigated for.) But nobody's prescribing medical marijuana for this use-case right now; they're prescribing it for things where the presence of THC seems pretty irrelevant to the goal.
You shouldn't be, because empirical evidence shows that there are.
CBD's most overt therapeutic effect is mediated through action at 5HT1A autoreceptors and allosteric modulation of mu and delta-opioid receptors, whereas THC's MoA is mediated through CB1 agonism, to a lesser extent CB2 agonism, and to a lesser extent than CBD, allosteric modulation of mu and delta-opioid receptors.
THC has anxiogenic (and paradoxical anxiolytic) and psychotomimetic properties, and has the side-effect of inducing schizophrenia-related disorders in some people. CBD's action at 5HT1A receptors both induces an anxiolytic effect, and reduces the symptoms of psychotic disorders.
A combination of CBD+THC can reduce the negative side-effects of THC used alone, and CBD alone does not have the same effects as THC or CBD+THC. There are studies that document the synergic effects of combined cannabinoids versus isolated cannabinoids.
I'm not skeptical that THC does anything; it certainly does. What I'm skeptical of, is whether marijuana has the particular medical benefits it's prescribed for in part because of THC, rather than despite THC.
I did, though I wasn't explicit. CBD has no discernible effect on CB1 receptors, and produces no anti-emetic effect. THC's CB1 agonism is directly responsible for its strong anti-emetic effect. CB1 agonism also has effects on pain perception and processes in the gut.
CBD has no discernible effect on CB2 receptors, while THC does. CB2 agonism is responsible for effects on immune system, inflammation via autoimmune responses and inflammation in the GI tract associated with IBS, Crohn's and UC.
I can attest to the productivity and creativity benefits marijuana provides, and looking at well-known and successful creatives, many of them attribute some of that productivity and creativity to marijuana consumption.
And there are a lot of people who are going to be more comfortable taking a plant in its natural state, than using an isolated compound that's been through a processing plant they have no control over, and which depends on a regulatory structure they have no faith in to tell them its safe (and what they are expecting).
Basically, there are a lot of people very skeptical of the corporate drug system (for good reasons, frankly), and the availability of natural herbal medicines does (for the most part [aside 1.]) no harm to them, and actually can do quite a bit of good.
If they don't trust aspirin, then let them use willow bark.
1. Obviously there are exceptions to this. There are some herbs that are considerably more dangerous and harmful than the useful compounds isolated from them. But there are also many herbs that are perfectly safe to use, and still effective to one degree or another. In some cases, they are every bit as effective, and even safer, than the isolated, concentrated alternatives (see St John's Wort).
Let me put it this way: the big-pharma drug manufacturing (and more generally, medical-equipment manufacturing) pipeline is set up such that the only thing about a drug that should be able to kill someone, is if the drug's active ingredient itself has a bad interaction with their body.
Something like medical marijuana, meanwhile, can kill you by heavy-metal soil toxicity; by pesticides; by coincidental allergens in non-active-ingredient plant matter; etc.
None of these things will be checked for when you get a dose of medical marijuana.
An analogy: would you trust IV saline solution that's just salt that someone poured into "carefully collected rainwater" and then put into a bag? Even for an immunocompromised patient (i.e. exactly the kind who consumes medical marijuana for e.g. supportive cancer treatment)?
No; you'd distill the water, wash and recrystallize the salt, and basically do everything else you can to ensure that "salt and water" is all that's in the "bag of salt and water" you're putting into the patient's bloodstream. Because that's how you ensure that some random variable doesn't creep in and mysteriously make them sick in a way that's impossible to diagnose.
People have been using willow bark for pain relief for hundreds if not thousands of years. They have not been injecting saline solution.
There's reason to believe that, in some cases, it is better to get medicines in their tried and true forms (those used for hundreds or thousands of years) rather than their more recent isolated forms (which only have a few decades of use). There could be beneficial interactions between all those unknown substances. In some cases - again see St John's Wort - the natural herbs are more effective, safer, and with fewer side effects than the concentrated drugs. And they are infinitely more available, since they can be grown right in your back yard.
There are of course exceptions to this - there was the very popular Chinese herb that had been used for a thousand years that turned out to give you throat cancer.
Don't get me wrong, I use the medical system. I also sometimes use herbal medicine, but I'm much, much more likely to reach for Advil than I am for willow bark. But I understand those who reach for willow bark, and recognize the validity of their reasoning.
Personally, I want to see these herbs tested in proper trials so we can determine which are pure placebo, which are effective the way St John's Wort is, and which are dangerous the way that Chinese herb was. If we can identify the ones that are actually effective, then that opens up a ton of room for people to self medicate and frees up resources in the medical system for those who really need them.
It's the "whatever quality the market will bear" part that I worry about.
Consider: if you buy a bottle of ground willow-bark sitting on a store shelf in a random bodega... where did it come from? Who made it? Where did they grow it? What are the legal requirements re: pesticides, soil toxicity, etc. in the country they grew it [since it probably wasn't here]? And how certain are you of those answers?
And mind you, Chinese herbs are a bit better, even, since they're mostly just considered "food" by standards bodies, and so it's pretty hard to import them (or even derivatives of them) and local growers get regulated for "food purity" by entities like the FDA. (No standards body can protect you from things that inherently contain compounds nobody is aware they inherently contain, of course. Unless some other compound in the herb was considered the active ingredient, and isolated out...)
But, well, let me put it like this: my local pharmacy has some homeopathic tinctures (for some reason. At least they're on the bottom shelf out of most people's sight.) Who made those? And, given that they started as poisons before being diluted, how sure are you that they actually "did homeopathy correctly" and diluted them so that they're not actually going to poison you? DIY, then? How sure are you that you can "do homeopathy correctly", instead of accidentally poisoning yourself because you didn't stir your cyanide tincture well-enough? And then, how confident would you be that some big-pharma company could—if they wished—do homeopathy correctly? I'm guessing a lot more than your confidence in either BestElsewhere Imports Co or in your own two hands.
That's what I'm getting at. It's not about what happens when you grow it yourself. It's about the worst quality of product the market could potentially deliver to you when you go looking, and what that means for a doctor considering which delivery-vehicle to prescribe.
I think the point is that we need to work to improve the regulation of both concentrated drugs and of herbal supplements.
And in the mean time, if people want to use that plant because it makes the feel better - let them. And if their doctor thinks that plant will serve them better than the mass produced drug, let the doctor proscribe the plant. After all, their doctor is the real expert here.
The exact same risks are in your grocery store produce aisle.
I'll grant that illegal marijuana has higher risk, but if it's regulated like any legal food crop I don't see the difference; in fact, I'd say there's less, since people consume it in relatively low quantities.
Doctors know there's a certain number of X-factors a patient can't avoid (like e.g. eating food from random sources if they're not under in-patient care) but they don't want to introduce new ones if they can help it.
Another analogy: a doctor will never prescribe you "a supplement." They might tell you getting more vitamin B in your diet would be good, but they'll never tell you to go out and buy a vitamin-B complex supplement. If they think you really need vitamin-B in a pill, they'll prescribe an actual big-pharma-pipeline-produced pill containing vitamin B.
Why? Because who-the-heck knows what's in the random supplement you bought off Amazon is why. If the pharmacy says they got a pill from big-pharma mfgr X, and mfgr X says they produced it (and the FDA endorses mfgr X), then that's a chain of custody and a chain of responsibility that holds them to account, and so ensures that there really is vitamin B (and nothing else) in the pill. That means you're not getting any extra risks just from taking the pills, beyond some weird interaction between you and vitamin B. Whereas, those supplement pills from Amazon? Nobody checked those. Your doctor does not want you to take random unchecked pills that may or may not contain vitamin B, and may-or-may-not contain lead/mercury/cyanide/whatever. They want you to take pills that certainly do contain vitamin B, and certainly don't contain those other things. Thus, prescriptions; thus, pharmacies; thus, the FDA itself.
You've seen very different doctors than I when it comes to calcium/D- and B- vitamins/multivitamins. They'll usually tell you "go get this over the counter." Sometimes with guidelines like "but not one of the ones with iron" or such.
Or even if they prescribe it, the pharmacy that gets the prescription (or maybe your insurance company - I forget which exactly had the problem with it when this happened to me) might say "just go grab one of the over the counter vitamins."
"Should be" is a giant risk factor... "Don't worry Mrs. Jones, this drug shouldn't be able to kill you unless you have a terrible allergic reaction!"
Big-pharma has shown, repeatedly, that their sole motivation is not altruistic treatments of human aliments... it is that of any other corporate entity. Profit. I don't think that is inherently evil either.
Medical cannabis could kill you... you are right, but I would argue that you are much more likely to be killed from alcohol or tobacco related events.
For just one data point: I've worked in EMS for 14 years and I have never seen a cause of death that was directly the result of using cannabis. Unfortunately, I have lost track of how many people I have seen die that were the direct result of alcohol ingestion. Same for Oxycotin and other opioid based "medicine" prior to everyone and their brothers walking around with narcan.
Personally, I've never heard of a case where Big Pharma has ever created a delivery vehicle for a well-known, Generally-Recognized-As-Safe active ingredient (like e.g. aspirin) that then kills, or even harms, people.
Like, the Tylenol murders? Those were big news. It'd be even bigger news if the manufacturer themselves were responsible instead of some random MITM. But there has never been that kind of big news. They don't screw up when making pills. Pills are pills. Novel active ingredients can kill you. But—presuming the active ingredient is safe—the pills themselves killing you? When has that ever happened?
> Unfortunately, I have lost track of how many people I have seen die that were the direct result of alcohol ingestion.
Well, yeah; people are consuming arbitrary amounts of alcohol. That's what's bad about recreational alcohol use.
Same goes for opioids, in a different sense; addiction drives you to consume arbitrary amounts of opioids. That's what's bad about drugs of abuse.
And yet, as an EMT, you still stick car-crash victims with fentanyl, no? Even though it's an opioid, and potentially a vector for chemical dependence. But you're not likely to kill them with it. Why? Because it's a measured dose.
Note that I'm not arguing that the active ingredients in medical cannabis could kill anyone. It's been pretty well shown that they don't really have an LD50.
It's not the active ingredients I'm worried about. It's the rest. It's the reason that hospitals don't get food for patients catered from arbitrary restaurants. You want to control all the variables you can. A CBD+THC tincture is going to have strictly fewer non-controlled variables than smoking the raw plant. A crystallized distillate suspended in a PEG gel pill is going to have fewer non-controlled variables still.
It's not about not-killing people. It's about treating people, successfully, with the highest ROI per treatment-hour possible and the least time spent flailing around trying to diagnose unknown brokenness while the patient continues to suffer.
FDA does a lot of good, but the trials that bring a drug to market are not foolproof, and many doctors prescribe off label.
I would estimate that legally regulated cannabis's other ingredients are an order of magnitude or two less risky than taking any pharmaceutical that has come to market in the past 20 years.
> None of these things will be checked for when you get a dose of medical marijuana.
Medical marijuana is grown in controlled environments by licensed medical growers, the products are tested for heavy metals and contaminants like mold, and are tested for levels of active ingredients.
Strains are grown for their medical benefits and standardized yield of constituent active ingredients, and for patients that need an absolutely standardized product, extracts and formulations are produced that meet those requirements.
No one is selling some crop that was grown in Mexico, someone's basement or downstream from an oil refinery.
For point 2, I couldn't agree more. I think it's just an industry maturity thing. My wife is using it for appetite/anti-emetic effects and trying to 'dose' with dry herb or pen vaporizing is a joke, and most of the oils/edibles are administered in a way that has pretty gnarly taste/aftertaste that has been counter-productive for her. (I've started making my own tablets but it still feels like a crap shoot)
>It's like prescribing willow bark for a headache when aspirin exists.
Willow bark contains salicin, not aspirin, while marijuana contains both THC and CBD. Willow bark also doesn't have the same blood-thinning effects of aspirin, which makes both viable pain relief choices for different populations.
This really just sounds like "plants bad; pills good!"
The "key advancement of chemistry"—the thing that makes chemistry chemistry, rather than alchemy (and as it happens, the thing that differentiates baking from cooking) is being able to measure the reactants we put into a beaker, and clean the product of the reaction of any side-products, such that we can then crystallize/distill/etc. out the product alone, weigh it, and thereby determine the exact potency of product. Once we know that, we can then do all sorts of things: dilute it to a controlled strength; create delivery vehicles that deliver it at particular speeds; put it straight into the body in ways that would just kill you if you put into the body all the other stuff that you isolated the product out of; etc.
Anyone can do this. People make THC tinctures and essential-oils all the time, in their kitchens. It doesn't matter to me whether you do it or someone else does it for you; but it seems irresponsible to me to tell someone to go eat the non-processed version for medical effect.
> Hydroponic cannabis is grown in highly controlled environments and the dosage levels are tested to be within an acceptable range.
Sure, you can control everything about the production of the marijuana itself. But the key to medical treatment is the last mile, and specifically the ability to relate a patient's response over time to a dosing schedule/pharmacodynamic profile for the drug. If you prescribe someone "medical marijuana", without fixing down how they're going to take it, they could very well do anything from eating the whole batch at once, to vaping it every three minutes, to just doing hits off a bong whenever they feel pain. These are not the same thing, and medically they should be different prescriptions if the doctor has any hope of knowing whether the treatment is working.
Pills (or, really, anything more specific than "here's a plant, go to town") let a doctor say something more specific like "take one of these every two hours", and then from there know exactly how much of the active ingredient should be in the patient's bloodstream at any given time of the day, and so be able to measure effects (and side-effects!) against those that are normal, or abnormal, for that level of dose being in the patient's body for that period of time.
the cannabis testing industry is largely garbage.
the labs that are properly equipped to do the testing are either forbidden from doing it because they're DEA registered, or they make plenty of money without dealing with fly by night operations that can only pay in cash.
so the labs that can get reference standards aren't allowed to do the testing.
that doesn't mean there aren't labs that are doing taking samples and then sending reports back. it just means the reports are lies, and the information printed on the labels is meaningless.
your state can require things all day long, that doesn't mean anything productive is happening.
>2. that it makes any medical sense to prescribe a (non-dose-controllable) plant over a pill,
Some medication, in pill form, is highly toxic.. see opiates which is a common alternative to thc for pain relief.
How did your comment reach the top?
Because there are no studies proving it has any benefit? Because, from clinical anecdote (i.e. stories from my doctor friends) CBD alone seems to work perfectly as a treatment for every problem where "try medical marijuana" is the current line on the treatment flowchart?
I mean, admittedly, I'm not friends with every kind of doctor. I don't know whether THC has any added benefit in cancer treatment, for example. That's why I'm not denying the benefits of THC; I'm just skeptical of them. I'd like to see some supporting evidence!
> Some medication, in pill form, is highly toxic.. see opiates which is a common alternative to thc for pain relief.
Opiates in pills are no more or less toxic in pill form than in their "native" form (e.g. the opium poppy.) There are even animal nerve toxins that are classified as opiates. It is the molecule itself—and the dose—that makes something toxic, not the delivery mechanism.
The point of putting something in a pill—or even more simply, of extracting and distilling an active ingredient into an essence—is to make the dose measurable and to control for any unknown variables (the other stuff besides the active ingredient), so that dosing can be done precisely.
Without first isolating and measuring the active ingredient(s), there is no way to, for example, make "extended release" or "immediate relief" forms of medical marijuana, because you both don't know how much THC+CBD is entering your body, and (with edibles or anything besides smoking) don't even control how quickly your own metabolism takes up the active ingredient from the plant matter.
Maybe it's useful if nothing else works but come on.
It only makes me wonder what other possibilities have been out there but banned and therefore unavailable for study and experimentation. Luckily the days of censoring and hoarding information seem to be coming to an end.
Of course as a society we love the pendulum effect. We'll swing it too far and then it will come back the opposite way too far (so much for my optimism :-P)
I'm in the camp that depression is rarely just some "chemical imbalance" in the brain that you were unlucky to be born with, and yet that is how we currently think of it and treat it.
It's most often the case there is something in one's past, very often from one's childhood, that has been avoided, and creates a chronic sense of worry/anxiety/depression that lingers.
Psilocybin has the effect of ego death - it feels as though the subconscious hold you have on your brain that pushes down uncomfortable feelings or memories just goes away. This paired with therapy can be very powerful because you naturally become much more open to talk through distressing things that you otherwise normally numb over and helps you process past traumas much more efficiently.
Which is somewhat similar to what i have read about the ketamine therapy, which essentially just makes certain areas of your brain more neuroplastic for a short duration, helping you get out of your routine thought patterns and help create new neural pathways and reshape the existing ones easier.
Note: I am not a brain researcher myself at all, so what I said could totally be just some pseudoscientific bs, but that's what I got after reading a bunch on both of the topic in a lot of places, including other HN threads. If you want to correct some misunderstandings in my post, please feel free to reply. I will be very happy to correct my misunderstandings.
I don't think you are accusing me of saying that, but just to be clear I completely agree with this. Michael Pollan's book also doesn't paint it as a "magic pill." No doubt some people assume that, but I don't believe it exists.
I do wonder about the accuracy of Freudian ideas, such as something in ones childhood being the cause or at least playing a role. It's certainly possible. Being raised by depressed people sucks, and there's a lot of scars that probably contribute to why depression seems to be inherited.
But I didn't get quite the one hit, life changing state of mind that is often attributed to psychedelics.
One thing that I have read is that the whole life-changing thing requires a transcendental experience - and that participants who failed to reach that echelon didn't experience long term improvement.
I can't really comment on that - because I simply never reached that breakthrough dose.
The biggest issue for me is that magic mushrooms taste kinda bad - it's rather hard to eat enough of them.
Truffles on the other hand, are completely inoffensive - tasting (in some way) like a slightly off nut.
I could quite happily snack on a big-ass bowl of those things, and watch enthralled as the world turned weird.
Did you take them under the supervision of a trained psychedelic therapist, with the appropriate dose, with the right intention, in a therapeutic context, over multiple sessions, using a protocol designed for maximum therapeutic effect (which usually includes talk therapy both before and after the sessions)?
Having the right set and setting are both absolutely critical to get the most out of psychedelics.
I must echo this entire post. I'm able to learn so much about myself when high. Far more personal than a therapist ever gets. I do introspection sessions after smoking. I smoke twice a week and do at most 5 hours of introspecting every week. This year I'm doing every other quarter.
After smoking I think about how to better myself and insights just flow in perhaps about 3 really good ones a session. And while yes about 10% of my insights are incorrect it's not a problem to write them all down in your phone and verify in a couple hours.
Doesn't seem like many people have similar experiences.
Really? A friend of mine had a similar experience to what @ergothus described in their comments. The friend had a biking accident and got stitches. To ease the pain the doctor prescribed Aadvil / Tylenol, but those drugs just caused diarrhea. So he tried edible marijuana[in a legal state] and it helped him a lot through a few weeks of painful recovery without any side effects.
I find miracle claims suspect as well, I don't think marijuana cures cancer.
It sort of makes sense intuitively. If you you can just make it through the agony of junk sickness. You are in the clear. A 36-hour dose seems preternaturally suited.
Edit to add link: https://atmanretreat.com/
I feel better.
Only noticeable effects were that I fell asleep much faster and woke up (refreshed) remembering all manner of weird clear dreams. Previously was one of those people who for the last decade couldn't recall a single dream (and had trouble nodding off).
My random guess is that dreaming/tripping just loosens the mind up.. maybe like a deep tissue massage for the mind.. allowing things to mentally move about a bit and drop back into place (or mentally gives your mind a chance to beat the previous day into manageable lumps)
Just another anecdote, but I've found many techniques that have worked for me to greatly enhance my dream recall that don't require any drugs.
The first technique is just to get interested in dreams, read up about them, study techniques of dream recall, dream analysis, the science of sleep/dreams, etc.
The second is to have an intention to remember your dreams when you wake up, and consciously focus on that intention before you go to sleep.
Third, when going to sleep try to remember your day in reverse, from the moment you laid down in bed back through your day to when you got up that morning. The theory is that you're kind of priming your mind to think back to your dream when you wake.
Next, as soon as you wake up write even the smallest little thing that you remember about your dreams down on paper. Alternatively, you can record your dream in a voice recorder, which is what I do as I find it much faster and more convenient than writing.
Something else that I've noticed is that if I move my body when I wake, it can adversely affect dream recall, so I try to stay as still and as much as possible maintain the exact body position that I woke up in while I record the dream.
Also, when I have a really long dream to record, I found that I would often forget the end of dream while writing it down, as writing all the details down would take too long and by the time I got half-way through I'd forget. So I suggest writing down some key words and images first, and then go back and fill in the details afterwards. The words and images you've written down will help you remember.
Then, what's helped me is to go over my dreams and try to make sense of them, look for patterns in them, and try to see the connection between them and my waking life. I've found they have a lot of meaning and aren't just "random neuronal noise" that some people make them out to be.
Using these techniques and others, and just taking dreams seriously and being interested in them led me to go from remembering maybe one dream every three months to remembering three long dreams every night, and filled up hundreds of pages in my dream journal with records of dreams and dream analysis.
The downside is that doing this takes a lot of time, so I stopped after a while, and lost interest in dreams, and went back to very rarely remembering my dreams.
The only difference is that I don’t record anything after. I find that just thinking about it a few times after I wake up is enough for my satisfaction. Dreams are very powerful tools for thought that I think society could benefit more from.
This was a /phase one/ clinical trial.
Phase One: administer small doses under very close supervision in a tiny number of people to determine whether it's immediately dangerous, or safe enough /for further study/. They used 89 - initial randomization of 30 each to placebo, 10mg, and 25mg. That's a good number for a phase one trial. But when we look at the sort of things that start hurting people when released to market, they're the sort of adverse effects that go undetected in trials with thousands of participants, and would need an infeasible large trial (>10k patients) to detect.
This trial does not prove safety. This trial is meant to establish a dosing range that is /safe enough/ to participants to allow for further study. They found no "serious" adverse effects, in healthy volunteers - that is, not depressed patients. Can drugs like this have different effects in people w and without depression? Yes they most certainly can, in particular if those people are on concurrent medications (which they will be, since this is being developed for treatment-resistant depression).
“We wanted to look at the safety and tolerability profile of our psilocybin, and to look at the feasibility of a model where up to six one-to-one sessions are held at the same time." No they didn't /want/ to - they /had/ to. This is article is just a press release.
Phase 2 is generally a range of doses, within the range established in phase one, wherein we attempt to determine, to a rough level of accuracy, which doses show toxicity, which show therapeutic benefit, and at roughly what proportions. This phase is meant to determine what dose will be used in a phase 3 trial, if any dose exists with an appropriate proportion of therapeutic benefit to side effect.
Phase 3 - a dose (or couple of doses) of a drug in a regimen meant to reflect real-world proposed usage is distributed and compared against either a currently used drug or a placebo. Depending on how big an effect is expected, how common the disease, etc. we'd look at trials of hundreds to thousands of patients. This is the trial where we get a real sense of safety, side effect profiles, efficacy, etc. This is the make-or-break line for getting your drug to market.
Phase 4 "trial" - aftermarket surveillance. Goes on for years after a drug hits market, because there's no trial that comes to close to capturing the rare side effects that may be visible when applied to the general population.
This was, also, presented to a neuropsychopharm conference, not published data. Which is to say, they're ready to brag about it, but they're not ready to submit themselves to close scrutiny.
Acute toxicity level 4 for Oral ingestion
Defines Toxicity level 4 as ~ 2000 to < 5000 mg/kg
The most potent strain of "magic mushrooms" are at most ~2% by weight(Psilocybe azurescens). So according to all the de facto standard literature, a potentially fatal dose of magic mushrooms is over 3 ounces of dried mushroom per kilogram of body weight. At 68 kg I would need to ingest over 5 kg to come up to the lower bound of the LD50.
No one without an axe to grind could realistically argue toxicity is a real valid concern.
Those are not the measures we are concerned with when we're talking about uncommon or rare effects (which, like the Vioxx deaths, had an incidence of one in /thousands/ at standard dosages), or effects that manifest with /chronic/ usage (e.g., over years of use, as is common with anti-depressant therapy).
What you're discussing is apples to oranges.
As to safety, the LD50 of psilocybin is pretty well established at very high levels, with physical effects being unreported below that.
If you find the endless hype a source of optimism and hope, then ... well, I guess I /am/ glad you have another source of optimism and hope. I don't share it, though.
E.g., the company that did the major trials for ketamine actually studied the s-enantiomer of ketamine using a nasal spray, which is quite distinct from the years of data we've accumulated on racemic ketamine with prolonged IV infusion. But this let them get a patentable version of ketamine on the market.
They could get a “method of use” patent that describes treating a co diction with psilocybin.
Even without either of those, the FDA will give them 3 years of market exclusivity (no other drugs will be approved).
In this case, they went for a placebo set-up because they were also trying to grab a little data to show whether 25 mg was significantly distinct from 10mg. The comparison to placebo was not needed, but is winning them a little extra publicity.
Note also that the study probably include some regular visits to the hospital. Some people may eat more healthy food a few days before a blood exam so the doctor gets happier. Some people may change other habits, like no binge drinking. So you need to measure the results in a group that follow the same explicit and implicit rules.
Does the report of the symptoms use the same criteria in the study than in general population? What about dizziness? Does this produce dizziness? Does the general population report dizziness to their family doctor? Replace dizziness with chest pain, or constipation, or whatever symptom you are interested.
Also, people lie to their doctor because they try to be nice. It's not a voluntary lie, but if there is a study about curing something, people want to be nice and give optimistic feedback. You must have a double blind control group so you can compensate this.
"Psilocybin administration to healthy participants: safety and feasibility
in a placebo-controlled study"
"Poster presented at the 58th Annual Meeting of The American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, Orlando, FL, USA, 8–11 December 2019"
I wouldn't say I am depressed but as someone who doesn't drink, smoke, drugs or take caffeine. I really want to try them.
The fact that mushrooms have been used by shamans all around the world since neolithic times, is truly fascinating.
I hope to try them at some point although at the moment I have been trying Sensory Deprivation Tanks and it really has reset my mind and emotions.
 - https://examine.com/supplements/theanine/
 - https://examine.com/supplements/kava/
Head over to /r/kava and the read the FAQ in the sidebar which includes a list of recommended vendors (and which ones to avoid).
For day to day use try the Yogi Tea with kava in it. It has cardamom so actually tastes good. The dose is very low so you’d need 3+ teabags to feel anything.
And the dosage for mushrooms is surprisingly high. For run of the mill strains, I believe 3.5 grams is considered a standard dose. Which is still not a blast you off the planet amount, but enough to experience visual distortions and euphoria.
My last trip was about this much with another 1.5 set aside but I was blasted out of time and space and opted not to re-up.
It all depends on the strain.
I'm sure you can find dosage guides online easily enough.
- having a mortgage and life insurance attached to it
- parents prevented contact with their children due to government intervention
- people in jail for possession of drugs
- safe driving limits
- undoing 50+ years of propaganda and social conditioning
In small doses it's super useful and seems to be relatively benign.
Been following and supporting the research at Johns Hopkins since Tim Ferris brought attention to it.
> ... 89 healthy volunteers.
Other in process research studies:
Would it kill the PopSci article to include the DOI to the actual study?
> Post capsule ingestion, patients lay with eyes closed and listened to music pre-selected by the research team (Kaelen et al., 2017) (https://www.mixcloud.com/MendelKa/playlists/psilocybin-v13/).
I'd be interested to see some support for this statement.
Anecdotally I've had the bad experience and the life-changing transcendent experience, all self-directed.
In my experience. It's not good for partying, but it's very good for meditating and inquiring deep into the nature of your being, what reality is, what Love is and what God is.
I've had long periods in my life of being a hard-line rationalist atheist. And I've had direct encounters with God. If there is one thing I learned it's this: You can't take anything as a belief you have to validate it in your direct experience.