Depicts a culture that uses a hallucinogen called

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depicts a culture that uses ahallucinogen called moksha-medicine. The peo-ple use this substance only in important lifeevents: initiatory rites, as part of psychother-apy during life crises, during the anguish ofterminal conditions (Huxley, 1994). Huxleywrote to Hofmann in 1962, and addressed thenote to “Dr Albert Hofmann, the original dis-coverer of the moksha-medicine” (Hofmannet al., 2008, p. 54).Could psychedelics beneficially be consid-ered in similar roles in our culture? Much re-search also suggests that they have a role in thetreatment of some mental disorders but, if wetake a holistic view of health, it could be amistake to confine their application to “treat-ment” or “cure” of what are seen as dysfunc-tions. A holistic approach requires that we con-sider that the causes of such symptoms asdepression and anxiety are clearly often rootedin larger social problems.Surely, due to the potential benefits of thesesubstances, but also considering their disruptivepower, a great deal more research should bedone, and to avoid missed opportunities, itshould be approached with some urgency. How-ever, in order for this to be successful, I believeit needs to meet two major criteria: First, itneeds to be multidisciplinary, combining exper-tise from psychology, philosophy (includingethics), neuroscience, and other relevant fields,looking not only at the theoretical basis of theimpact of psychedelics, on individuals and onsociety as a whole, but also combining this withcarefully controlled clinical studies. Second,this research needs to be wisely and profession-ally managed and communicated. Research intothese substances in the 1950s and 1960s wasabruptly halted by governments around theworld due to sensationalized reporting on theirperceived dangers, as well as their appearanceas key components of a countercultural narra-tive. As Hendricks (2014) said of this cessationof earlier research, “This may represent one ofthe greatest missed scientific and medical op-portunities of our time” (p. 981).But I leave the final words in this article toAlbert Hofmann, who died in 2008 at age 102.Speaking of the Eleusinian Mysteries, and therole that psychedelics may have played in thebirth of Western philosophy, he wrote,Eleusis can be a model for today. Eleusis-like centerscould unite and strengthen the many spiritual currentsof our time, all of which have the same goal—the goalof creating, by transforming consciousness in individ-ual people, the conditions for a better world, a worldwithout war and without environmental damage, aworld of happy people. (Wasson et al., 2008, p. 148)11The leaflet included with the tablets or ampoules ofDelysid stated “By taking Delysid himself, the psychiatristis able to gain an insight into the world of ideas andsensations of mental patients” (Hofmann, 1980, Chapter 4:Use of LSD in Psychiatry).

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