psychedelics

created 2 years ago

Dr. X is a dad. Appropriately – boringly – at 4:37 p.m. on a national holiday, he is lighting a charcoal grill, about to grab a pair of tongs with one hand and a beer with the other
Somewhat less conventionally, two hours ago, he was escorting a woman around his yard, helping her walk off a large dose of MDMA.
This would be psychedelic-assisted therapy, the not-new but increasingly popular practice of administering psychotropic substances to treat a wide range of physical, psychological and psycho-spiritual concerns.
She'd been skeptical going in, but after it was over, Dr. X says, "She was so angry that it was illegal."
"I'm seeing that consciousness correlates to disease," he says. "Every disease." Narcolepsy. Cataplexy. Crohn's. Diabetes – one patient's psychedelic therapy preceded a 30 percent reduction in fasting blood-sugar levels.
www.rollingstone.com
Pay attention. What if you could focus and control your consciousness when under the influence of psychedelics? Cognitive roller-coasters may be upon us.
The basic premise was that if you could carefully curate the environment, and then pattern, sequence, and control the set of stimuli that individuals would be exposed to while under the influence of a mind-altering chemical or plant, you could orient awareness towards useful spaces of mind. You could, for example, willingly induce positive and cathartic, transformational experiences.
What this means, as Leary explains, is that the subjective effects of psychedelics and marijuana are "user-constructed," in that the initial conditions of the experience, both environmental and psychological, feedback into the subjective experience of the trip itself. Leary condensed this feedback effect in the notion of “set and setting,” which has remained a widely accepted heuristic by psychedelic explorers for fifty years.
Attention is at the center of consciousness.
This focus is crucial not just to altered states of consciousness but also to ordinary consciousness, and by working on attention through techniques such as mindfulness and self-inquiry, we can alter not only psychedelic experience, but experience itself!
We can untangle ourselves from our maps, we can decouple our minds from reflexive patterns, and create new patterns.
thedailybeast.com

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