Are Hallucinogens the New Miracle Drug?

By GEORGE DAWSON, MD (6)

Steve Jobs:  “Taking LSD was a profound experience, one of the most important things in my life.  LSD shows you that there’s another side to the coin, and you can’t remember it when it wears off, but you know it.  It reinforced my sense of what was important – creating things instead of making money, putting things back into the stream of history and of human consciousness as much as I could.”  (ref 1)

Woodstock (Chip Monck):  “To get back to the warning that I received. You may take it with however many grains of salt that you wish. That the brown acid that is circulating around us isn’t too good. It is suggested that you stay away from that. Of course it’s your own trip. So be my guest, but please be advised that there is a warning on that one, OK?” (ref 2)

Warning: The final few paragraphs of this post contain language that some may find offensive.  I included it for a reason.   In 30 years of practice and in my real life – I have found that many people talk this way.  If profanity offends you don’t read the end of this post.

Everywhere I turn these days – whether it is a blog or more traditional media I am struck by the same stories on hallucinogens.  If you believe what you read out there, hallucinogens are magical drugs in that they are almost totally benign, consciousness expanding, and they can treat your anxiety or or depression.  They have been actively discriminated against like other illegal drugs and that is the only reason we have not done the research to prove that they can treat many problems.  Back in the 1970’s we would have said that “The Man” is restricting access to valuable consciousness expanding drugs and if “The Man” was overthrown – the world would be a much better place.  I have briefly reviewed the same lines of rhetoric that occur with cannabis.  I have not heard similar arguments with ketamine, probably because fewer people have experience with it and it is a more difficult drug to use, even in a medical setting where the drug has a known concentration and purity. 

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