Perhaps one of the most medicinal but least powerful of
Cannabis Sativa whose active
ingredient is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) has also been
referred to as marijuana, dope, pot, bush, weed, hash,
ganja, joint, among others.
It is by far one of the
safest psychedelics on Earth, and perhaps one of the few
that can be utilized without supervision.
It can treat a number of diseases and disorders,
including cancer, fibromyalgia, epilepsy and multiple
better than pharmaceuticals. Marijuana has also been
found to reduce blood pressure, treat glaucoma,
alleviate pain and even inhibit HIV.
It is an antioxidant,
anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective.
When cannabis is used over a
period of time, it allows us to witness our many subtle
motives which, under normal consciousness, are usually
Duality within human
consciousness becomes clear as does the ego and alter
ego. Cannabis highs last typically from 1-4 hours.
There are two states of awareness which relate to these
The basic one can be called
pure awareness. In this state the person is completely
and vividly aware of his experience, but there are no
processes of thinking, manipulating, or interpreting
The sensations fill the person's attention,
which is passive but absorbed in what is occurring,
which is usually experienced as intense and immediate.
Pure awareness is
experiencing without associations to what is there.
The other state of awareness
is one which can be termed conscious awareness, in which
the sensory experience is connected to meanings, plans,
functions, decisions, and possible actions.
This is our normal way of
perceiving and how we usually go about our daily lives.
We do not sense the world directly, but with the
incorporation of our memories, meanings, and uses. In
the state of pure awareness objects are experienced as
sensory qualities, without the intrusion of
There are examples of this
in normal life.
The sensation of sexual
orgasm may be (and hopefully is) experienced with pure
awareness. Natural beauty, such as flowers, mountains,
oceans, and sunsets, is sometimes experienced from a
point of awareness without adding conscious thinking.
With this expansiveness which occurs after ingesting
cannabis, users may begin to notice infinite
possibilities to raise the quality of his/her life that
would otherwise have remained hidden from normal,
And feelings of health and
happiness naturally lead to hope, which of itself can be
For a person using marijuana for the first few times,
sensory changes occur sequentially, rather than all at
First they may notice increased brightness and
clarity of colors, then sounds, then visual structures,
such as paintings or designs. (Two dimensional photographs
and motion pictures may be seen in three dimensions on
the high, a perception which can be transferred to the
normal state under certain conditions.)
sensations may present themselves. Any order of the
effects may occur during one high state or several.
Often effects will develop to particular levels and then
stabilize without further elaboration.
Cannabis can act as the loosening agent, so that
whatever has been banned from consciousness may come
To uncover our deceptions
without our usual rationalizations can be unpleasant, an
experience that has turned many psychologically fragile
individuals away from marijuana despite its therapeutic
Intensity of sensory experience seems related to the
total proportion or amount of attention which is
involved in the process.
If attention is used in
conscious or unconscious processes in making decisions,
remembering, evaluating, etc., then this much is removed
from the awareness of the sense experience.
Thus it may be that one of
the causes of sensory enhancement under cannabis is that
attention energy moves from consciousness processes into
awareness processes, which amplifies the experience.
Cannabis' contribution to
the developing spirit is cumulative. As bodily tensions
are reduced mental fears dissolve, clearing the way to
People who try cannabis and
reject it do so usually because they feel uncomfortable
and confused in altered, fuller consciousness. Instead
of life being safely framed by the rigidity of the
societal dogma, the world becomes unfamiliarly bigger,
brighter, fuller, yet less manageable, more
unpredictable and full of mystery.
A mind that has been bound
and accustomed to a low charge or a selling without
light very often finds the expansiveness of reality too
highly energized. The light can be blinding and
Over time, and with regular
intake, when these higher states of seeing are no longer
the focal point of attention, a restructuring of values
Given the right dose, individual, set and setting,
Salvia Divinorum produces a unique state of 'divine
inebriation' which has been traditionally used by
It is the most powerful
natural psychedelic legally available and capable of
profound out-of-body experiences just by simply chewing
its leaves. Users should observe all cautions with
Salvia including appropriate sitters, safe environments
and education before ingestion.
Its effects can be traumatic
for those who are unprepared.
Salvia divinorum is both similar to, and
different from, other drugs that affect the brain and
In many ways Salvia
divinorum is a unique 'magical' herb. Salvia (and
the salvinorin it contains) is very difficult to
categorize pharmacologically. It does not fit well into
any existing pharmacological class. A very small and
almost insignificant amount of salvinorin can
immediately propel the user into an out of body
Once the appropriate
concentration of salvinorin is met, it takes only
seconds before the user is unable to verbally respond to
a sitter, and thus important that all dangerous objects
and physical obstacles be removed in the user's space.
Most users who are exposed
to large doses have only slight recall on what
transpired in reality for up to 15 minutes after the
Most reports describe the use of this plant by Mazatec
shamans, and although it is just barely touched upon in
the anthropological literature, it is also reportedly
used by their immediately contiguous neighbors, the
Cuicatecs and Chinatecs.
Given that the plant is
quite easily propagated, it is surprising that such an
extraordinary herb is only known of in such a
geographically limited area. It seems quite probable
that it would have found its way to other neighboring
tribes through sharing and trade.
With a moderately strong dose of Salvia, consciousness
remains and some thought processes are still lucid, but
one becomes completely involved in inner experience and
loses all contact with consensual reality. Sometimes
voices may be heard.
With eyes open contact with
consensual reality will not be entirely lost, but when
you close your eyes you may forget about consensus
reality and enter completely into a dreamlike scene.
Shamanistic journeying to
other lands, foreign or imaginary; encounters with
beings, entities, spirits; or travels to other ages may
You may even live the life
of another person. At this level you have entered the
Individuality may be lost; one experiences merging with
God/dess, mind, universal consciousness, or bizarre
fusions with other objects real or imagined, e.g.
merging with a wall may be experienced.
At this level it is
impossible to function in consensual reality, but
unfortunately some people do not remain still but move
around in this befuddled state.
For this reason a sitter is
essential to ensure the safety of someone voyaging to
the inner levels. To the person experiencing this, the
phenomenon may be terrifying or exceedingly pleasant;
but to an outside observer the individual may appear
confused or disoriented.
The dose can be well moderated by using an extract and
users can enjoy a variety of intensities by simple
What is especially important during a Salvia trip is to
not talk to the user unless it is
requested and preferably shutdown all electronic devices
including television, phone and music and they can
create disruptions during the experience.
is not a party drug and requires a responsible
support person or group by the user's side at all times.
What is interesting is that a surprisingly large
proportion of salvia users report a type of afterglow
It typically involves mood
elevation, an overall sense of well being, and often a
fresh outlook on life which can linger for several days
(or longer) after the experience. This phenomenon seems
to be quite common.
For many mood elevation can
last between one and three days.
Ingesting these types of mushrooms has a strong
hallucinogenic effect that begins to affect the user
within 20-30 minutes.
Early effects of the active
ingredients in mushrooms, psilocybin, psilocin, and
baeocystin, are broken down into psilocin once they have
been taken. The initial feelings are described as mild
anxiety or anticipatory sensations.
Entire physical body
sensation of energy or mild electricity running through
the body is common.
Hallucinogenic mushrooms have been part of human culture
as far back as the earliest recorded history.
Ancient paintings of
mushroom-ed humanoids have been found in caves in the
Saharan desert. Central and Southern America cultures
built temples to mushroom gods and carved "mushroom
These stone carvings in the
shape of mushrooms, or in which figures are depicted
under the cap of a mushroom, have been dated to as early
as 1000-500 B.C. The purpose of the sculptures is not
certain, but these stones may have been religious
The effects leave users in a high state of euphoria.
They are mood enhancing, general happiness, insightful
ideas and sense of creative energy.
In mathematical terms, normal brains have a well-ordered
There's not much cross-linking
between networks. That changes after the psilocybin
dose. Suddenly the networks are cross-linking like
crazy, but not in random ways.
New types of order emerge.
"We can speculate on the
implications of such an organization," wrote
researchers, who were led by neurobiologist Paul
Expert of King's College London.
"One possible by-product
of this greater communication across the whole brain
is the phenomenon of synaesthesia" common during
psychedelic experiences, of sensory mix-up: tasting
colors, feeling sounds, seeing smells, and so on.
While the psychedelic state
has been previously compared with dreaming,
the opposite effect has been observed in the brain
network from which we get our sense of "self" (called
the default-mode network or ego-system).
Put simply, while activity
became "louder" in the emotion system, it became more
disjointed and so "quieter" in the ego system.
The first study,
published in Proceedings of the National Academy of
Sciences in 2012, revealed decreases in brain activity
after injection of psilocybin that were localized to the
This finding was exciting
because it synched with the idea that psychedelics cause
temporary "ego dissolution", in other words diminishing
one's sense of having a firm and enduring personality.
New research adds to our understanding about how this
study that examined brain scans of people under the
influence of psilocybin found that it reduces activity
in certain areas of the brain. That reduction of
activity leads to the drug's effect on cognition and
Psychedelics, and psilocybin in particular,
might actually be eliminating what could be called the
extra "noise" in the brain.
Psychiatry professor Matthew Johnson, who works at Johns
Hopkins University School of Medicine, presented the
preliminary results of a pilot feasibility study looking
at the ability of psilocybin to treat smoking addiction
at the 2013 Psychedelic Science conference in Oakland,
For the study, five
cigarette-addicted participants underwent
placebo-controlled psilocybin treatment with a
psychiatrist. All five completely quit smoking after
their first psilocybin session.
At all follow-up visits,
which occurred up to one year later for the first four
participants, it was biologically confirmed that the
participants had abstained from cigarettes.
It should be noted that like all 'major' hallucinogens,
psilocybin can precipitate psychotic episodes and
uncover or aggravate previous mental illness. If you're
stressed out or depressed, don't take mushrooms; if you
have schizophrenia, DO NOT take
For exhaustingly exhaustive and thoroughly technical
descriptions of most Psilocybes, the reader is referred
Psilocybin Mushrooms of the World by
Ayahuasca is a brew prepared
Banisteriopsis caapi vine, originally used for
spiritual and healing purposes in the Peruvian Amazon
Peru's government claimed that consumption
of the "teacher" or "wisdom plant,
gateway to the spiritual world and its secrets, which is
why traditional Amazon medicine has been structured
around the ayahuasca ritual".
Though scientific evidence of the clinical benefits of
ayahuasca is limited, advocates say it has become
increasingly popular as a tool to treat post-traumatic
stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and addictions.
"Most people seek
ayahuasca with good intentions - they are not
thrill-seeking but are curious, serious - or have
specific issues such as depression," says botanist
Prof Dennis McKenna, from the University of
The vine is usually mixed
with leaves containing the psychedelic compound
It causes hallucinogenic
experiences, and is made up of a chemical compound that
already occurs within the human body endogenously (as
well as in a number of plants). This means our brains
are naturally set up to process the compound because it
has receptors that exist specifically to do so.
research based on near-death experiences points to
the fact that the brain releases DMT during death. Some
researchers have also conjectured that DMT is released
during other intense experiences, including orgasm.
Gabor Mate, a medical doctor
from Vancouver who is a prominent ayahuasca researcher,
contends that therapy assisted by psychedelics, and
ayahuasca in particular, can untangle complex,
unconscious psychological stresses.
He claims these
stresses underlie and contribute to all chronic medical
conditions, from cancer and addiction to depression and
results of the first North American
observational study on the safety and long-term
effectiveness of ayahuasca treatment for addiction
and dependence were published in June 2013 in the
journal Current Drug Abuse Reviews.
All of the
participants in the study reported positive and
lasting changes, and the study found statistically
"for scales assessing
hopefulness, empowerment, mindfulness, and quality
of life meaning and outlook subscales. Self-reported
alcohol, tobacco and cocaine use declined, although
cannabis and opiate use did not."
reductions in problematic cocaine use were also
It is a ritualistic learning process that is
becoming increasingly popular across the globe, with
people exploring their personal development through
the introspective nature of the hallucinogenic
experience, according to the
International Center for Ethnobotanical
Education, Research & Service (ICEERS).
LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is
a naturally occurring alkaloid extracted from the
fungus Ergot which can grow on rye and other grains.
It is among the most potent, mood changing
chemicals. It is odorless, colorless, and has a
slightly bitter taste.
From a chemical perspective, LSD in its pure,
unadulterated form, is relatively safe, and although
it varies from person to person, it has no serious
"Man-made" LSD or "street acid" on the other hand is
manufactured with combinations of poisons (usually
strychnine, a rat killer) and should be
avoided at all costs.
Unlike cannabis, LSD
highs can last much longer - usually over six hours
and in some cases more than twelve hours on
different "street acids" which can be problematic
for those experiencing "bad trips."
Note that the
extraction of LSD from Ergot is complex and
requires skills that are well-versed in chemistry
(do not initiate your own experiments).
LSD is known to cause changes in consciousness,
including "ego-dissolution," or a loss of the sense
of self. Despite a detailed knowledge of the action
of LSD at specific serotonin receptors, it has not
been understood how these pharmacological effects
can translate into such a profound effect on
It is capable of producing a full range of low and
high level hallucinatory states in a fashion that is
significantly less consistent and reproducible than
that of many other commonly used psychedelics.
Although LSD is
technically capable of producing hallucinatory
states in a fashion that is on par with other
powerful psychelics, including vividness and
intensity, these effects are extremely rare and
inconsistent in comparison.
This lack of
consistently induced hallucinatory breakthroughs
means that for most, LSD is simply not as deep of an
experience as certain other psychedelics.
rare occasion that they are induced however, they
can be comprehensively described in terms of their
variations as lucid in believability, interactive in
style, new experiences in content, autonomous in
controllability and geometry-based in appearance.
The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease
published results from the
first study of LSD's therapeutic potential in
humans to appear in more than four decades.
controlled, double-blind study, which was conducted
in Switzerland under the direction of Swiss
psychiatrist Peter Gasser, measured the impact of
LSD-assisted psychotherapy on 12 people with
life-threatening diseases (mainly terminal cancer).
"The study was a success in the sense that we did
not have any noteworthy adverse effects," Gasser
says. "All participants reported a personal
benefit from the treatment, and the effects were
stable over time."
LSD reduces connectivity
within brain networks, or the extent to which nerve
cells or neurons within a network fire in synchrony.
LSD also seems to reduce the extent to which
separate brain networks remain distinct in their
patterns or synchronization of firing. Overall, LSD
interferes with the patterns of activation in the
different brain networks that underlie human thought
Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris and his colleagues at
Imperial College London did sequential brain scans
of 20 healthy volunteers over 6 hours, using
functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), which
maps brain activity by detecting changes in blood
flow, and magneto-encephalography (MEG), a technique
that images brain function by recording magnetic
fields produced by electrical currents occurring in
Dr. Carhart-Harris suggests that,
assessment tools available today than in the 1950's
and 1960's, it may be possible to evaluate potential
uses of LSD as a treatment for addiction and other
disorders," such as treatment-resistant depression, "which we are
currently investigating with a similar drug to
LSD also may provide a
useful human model of psychosis, as it leads to
changes in brain network behavior that shows overlap
with the early phase of psychosis.
"I see the true
importance of LSD in the possibility of
providing material aid to meditation aimed at
the mystical experience of a deeper,
comprehensive reality. Such a use accords
entirely with the essence and working character
of LSD as a sacred drug."
Dr Albert Hofmann, the
founder of LSD.
"... LSD is best understood as a powerful
unspecific amplifier, or catalyst, of mental
processes, which facilitates the emergence of
unconscious material from different levels of
the human psyche."'
Dr Stan Grof, Esalen
Although I don't
recommend trying LSD without a trained professional
guiding you through the process, if you are
absolutely determined to ignore this advice, the
following video gives sensible guidelines on how to
prepare for and manage an LSD trip.