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rob19
09-14-2010, 02:43 PM
Being a Psychology major I'm absolutely fascinated by Psychonautics and it's ENORMOUS untapped potential as a therapeutic tool/method. Psychonautics, as defined by Wiki, is the methodology for describing and explaining the subjective effects of altered states of consciousness, including those induced by mind altering substances, and to a research paradigm in which the researcher voluntarily immerses him/herself into an altered state by means of such techniques, as a means to explore human experience and existence.

My first encounter with the world of psychedelia was through Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD-25). That was about a year ago. Since that time I've done LSD about 20 times in varying dose amounts, along with a few other assorted psy's. I'm not saying this to be "cool", but rather give me a certain degree of credibility when I warn any of those curious about psychedelia, that these chemicals are powerful tools. Just like an automobile is a tool, and an automobile in the hands of an ill prepared person can be very dangerous.. the same can be said for psychedelics. Not in a physical sense, infact most of these psychedelic drugs are some of the safest drugs known to man. However these drugs are certainly not for everyone. Especially those of weak minds and constitutions.

The following chart shows the ld50 of a various amount of drugs. LD50 (Lethal Dose 50%) is the dose required to kill half the members of a tested population after a specified test duration, you see?
http://www.finheaven.com/clear.gif

As you can see, it's virtually almost impossible to overdose on things like LSD, cannabis, and Psilocybin(mushrooms). Very safe physical drugs, however these safe drugs(weed, lsd, shrooms, dmt) are schedule 1 narcotics.. while very dangerous drugs like heroin, mdma, cocaine, codeine, and opium are schedule 2.. it's ****ing psychotic, and there is more to this than most people care to think about..

I digress. I've recently stumbled across some great minds. People like Richard Alpert, Terence McKenna, Alan Watts, Carl Jung, Aldous Huxley, Timothy Leary, Albert Hofmann, and so on. I'm entranced really, I spend more time now-a-days listening to assorted lectures via youtube, or reading some of the books of these men than I actually spend on school work.. or really anything else for that matter.. :lol:

So my request is, that if anyone can recommend any philosopher/psychonaut that they feel has made a large contribution to psychedelia/psychology, or the interrelatedness of the two.. that may have escaped me, please do so

Much appreciated.

Furthermore, I understand most people are completely ignorant to any and all psychedelic substances. Whose view points are smeared and distorted by propaganda. Please keep such ignorance away from here, go do some research. Instead I'd like to keep this an intelligent discussion on people actually 'versed', if you will, in psychedelics and psychedelic research.

I just re-read the ToS. In no way am I violating it in talking about illegal substances. For those who wish to warn me about the "government watching me over the internet". I'll take my chances, thank you.

Bumpus
09-14-2010, 09:01 PM
Read some of Leary's **** back in college. That dude is WAY ****ing out there.

I admit to nothing. But, (speaking as a former deadhead) remember not to lose sight of yourself while searching for yourself.

rob19
09-14-2010, 10:07 PM
Read some of Leary's **** back in college. That dude is WAY ****ing out there.

I admit to nothing. But, (speaking as a former deadhead) remember not to lose sight of yourself while searching for yourself.

sage advice

to be clear though, when you say when he was in college, you mean when he was teaching at Harvard, yes?

Bumpus
09-14-2010, 11:22 PM
:lol: No. Actually, I meant when I was in college.

Dogbone34
09-14-2010, 11:43 PM
an early 80's thinker from sherman oaks or somewhere in the san fernando valley

people on ludes should not drive

that was my skull. i'm so wasted

- signed jeff spicoli


(sorry couldn't resist)

Locke
09-15-2010, 12:08 PM
You're focusing on just a single aspect of this field, which is a reason that Psychonautics as a whole is not taken very seriously by the majority of the Psychological community. The field was originally designed to look at individuals who claimed to enter an altered state of mind during meditation or prayer. I don't know enough about it to know how it happened, but eventually was taken over by those who wanted to study the effects of psychedelic drugs on the brain in the none physiological sense. That is, they wanted to explore how the brain worked while under the influence of these drugs, not the effect it actually had on the brain.

As it stands presently, there are mixed reviews on this particular branch of psychology. While there is a lot of good that has come out of it, a la medicinal marijuana, there is probably more negative. The biggest issue is the large population of users who hide behind the facade of psychonautics to rationalize their drug use. The unscientific methods used by a large number of those in the field is also an issue. Much like psychotherapy, there is no tangible data to be collected. It is all subjective. Most troubling is a recent trend of people attracted to the field simply because of the ability to use these drugs in a legal way. If you decide to pursue the field, you'll want to make sure you be careful about how and who you study it with.

http://www.psychonaut.com/

That link will probably interest you.

As someone who studies the effect these things have on the brain, I'd feel bad if I didn't let you know that those in the field of psychonautics do tend to downplay the risk of some of these drugs. LSD, in particular, has had cases where perfectly healthy users beforehand will develop psychosis afterwards. There is no clear understanding as to why this is yet, but its hypothesized its due to the effect of the drug's binding to the brain's serotonin and dopamine receptors. It's usually treated with dopamine antagonists, same as schizophrenics...

rob19
09-15-2010, 01:26 PM
You're focusing on just a single aspect of this field, which is a reason that Psychonautics as a whole is not taken very seriously by the majority of the Psychological community. The field was originally designed to look at individuals who claimed to enter an altered state of mind during meditation or prayer. I don't know enough about it to know how it happened, but eventually was taken over by those who wanted to study the effects of psychedelic drugs on the brain in the none physiological sense. That is, they wanted to explore how the brain worked while under the influence of these drugs, not the effect it actually had on the brain.

I didn't really key into any aspect of it, really. I was just asking for Philosophers. Unlike psychology, which is concerned with understanding other people, psychonautics, as you know, is more concerned with understanding themselves, and the process of self exploration; accordingly, they engage in direct exploration of themselves and their own thought processes. Therefore, it's a highly subjective field, as you mentioned.. and severely limits the application of the scientific method.. which is why it's not highly regarded in the Psychological community, like you said.

but to quote the late, great Terence McKenna; "Psychology without Psychedelics is like pissing in the wind" :chuckle:


As it stands presently, there are mixed reviews on this particular branch of psychology. While there is a lot of good that has come out of it, a la medicinal marijuana, there is probably more negative. The biggest issue is the large population of users who hide behind the facade of psychonautics to rationalize their drug use. The unscientific methods used by a large number of those in the field is also an issue. Much like psychotherapy, there is no tangible data to be collected. It is all subjective. Most troubling is a recent trend of people attracted to the field simply because of the ability to use these drugs in a legal way. If you decide to pursue the field, you'll want to make sure you be careful about how and who you study it with. The bold statement is accurate, however does that make it not legitimate? Is anything that's not applicable with the scientific method not worth studying? I understand that it cripples the credibility of an experiment when the test subject and experiment conductor are one in the same person, but there isn't any other way.. it's the nature of the field.

As far as rationalizing drug use.. I'm sure some people do.. but that's the same with anything really. Personally, I smoke cannabis every day (for a myriad of reasons).. and tried LSD before I started getting into psychology, just really to experience it and not be ignorant to it anymore..and since then I've done it for the incredible introspection.. I don't think everyone who does LSD has to be psychiatrists and psychologists.. It can be a very powerful tool for anyone if used in the right way, however LSD is definitely NOT a causal drug or one to be used on a daily, or even weekly basis.. as I said I've taken it 20 times over the course of an entire year.

So I have no delusions about my drug use, it was present far prior to any interest in psychonautics, and will remain so even if I choose to pursue a different career path..Mainly because I can, and it's not bad for me.. not to mention it's just so terribly interesting.. as you may or may not know :)



As someone who studies the effect these things have on the brain, I'd feel bad if I didn't let you know that those in the field of psychonautics do tend to downplay the risk of some of these drugs. LSD, in particular, has had cases where perfectly healthy users beforehand will develop psychosis afterwards. There is no clear understanding as to why this is yet, but its hypothesized its due to the effect of the drug's binding to the brain's serotonin and dopamine receptors. It's usually treated with dopamine antagonists, same as schizophrenics...This is partially true.. but to my understanding it can only be triggered in people with a genetic predisposition to psychosis/ schizophrenia (family history). Otherwise as I pointed out, LSD and psychedelics in general are very safe drugs. However I can not stress the importance of responsibility with psychedelic use, set & setting are very important.

Have you tried any psychedelics yourself locke?

also, thanks for the link man.

Locke
09-15-2010, 02:54 PM
I didn't really key into any aspect of it, really. I was just asking for Philosophers. Unlike psychology, which is concerned with understanding other people, psychonautics, as you know, is more concerned with understanding themselves, and the process of self exploration; accordingly, they engage in direct exploration of themselves and their own thought processes. Therefore, it's a highly subjective field, as you mentioned.. and severely limits the application of the scientific method.. which is why it's not highly regarded in the Psychological community, like you said.

but to quote the late, great Terence McKenna; "Psychology without Psychedelics is like pissing in the wind" :chuckle:

The bold statement is accurate, however does that make it not legitimate? Is anything that's not applicable with the scientific method not worth studying? I understand that it cripples the credibility of an experiment when the test subject and experiment conductor are one in the same person, but there isn't any other way.. it's the nature of the field.

As far as rationalizing drug use.. I'm sure some people do.. but that's the same with anything really. Personally, I smoke cannabis every day (for a myriad of reasons).. and tried LSD before I started getting into psychology, just really to experience it and not be ignorant to it anymore..and since then I've done it for the incredible introspection.. I don't think everyone who does LSD has to be psychiatrists and psychologists.. It can be a very powerful tool for anyone if used in the right way, however LSD is definitely NOT a causal drug or one to be used on a daily, or even weekly basis.. as I said I've taken it 20 times over the course of an entire year.

So I have no delusions about my drug use, it was present far prior to any interest in psychonautics, and will remain so even if I choose to pursue a different career path..Mainly because I can, and it's not bad for me.. not to mention it's just so terribly interesting.. as you may or may not know :)


This is partially true.. but to my understanding it can only be triggered in people with a genetic predisposition to psychosis/ schizophrenia (family history). Otherwise as I pointed out, LSD and psychedelics in general are very safe drugs. However I can not stress the importance of responsibility with psychedelic use, set & setting are very important.

Have you tried any psychedelics yourself locke?

also, thanks for the link man.

Yes, I've tried mushrooms before, as well as marijuana and some other stuff.

My point about it being subjective and not having tangible data was only to highlight why it isn't taken very seriously by mainstream science. I would definitely agree that it has value at the internal level for an individual. That is if that person is stable, which is yet another subjective term.

I'm unsure if the post-LSD psychosis can only be triggered in those with a genetic predisposition. That is something we will likely never know since the APA would never approve any sort of study that would allow for the testing of it. Anything that would point towards that conclusion would be secondary data, which makes it shaky at best...

rob19
09-15-2010, 03:16 PM
Yes, I've tried mushrooms before, as well as marijuana and some other stuff.

My point about it being subjective and not having tangible data was only to highlight why it isn't taken very seriously by mainstream science. I would definitely agree that it has value at the internal level for an individual. That is if that person is stable, which is yet another subjective term.

I'm unsure if the post-LSD psychosis can only be triggered in those with a genetic predisposition. That is something we will likely never know since the APA would never approve any sort of study that would allow for the testing of it. Anything that would point towards that conclusion would be secondary data, which makes it shaky at best...

truth

rob19
09-15-2010, 04:58 PM
You're focusing on just a single aspect of this field

I reread my introduction. It may have been a little myopic as far as explaining the field goes.