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Psychoactive plants and hallucinogens have given us the opportunity to see life through different perspectives for thousands of years. Many of these plants, which can only be defined as gifts from nature, have unfortunately been declared illegal in many parts of the world due to the ignorance and intolerance of many governments. As the shift in consciousness is accelerating across the planet, more people are accepting the true power of psychedelics with unprecedented potential to treat cancers, addictions, psychological traumas, but most of all, to reorganize the brain and shift thought patterns. It is now imperative for human consciousness that we free psychedelics from scrutiny and demonization, so that we may all use these plants responsibly to facilitate a greater awareness of non-secular concepts that are changing our world.
Author’s caution: I preface this article with a few words of caution. Specifically, through my shamanistic practices around the world, I have experienced the effects of all of the psychedelics mentioned below. Each has its own use and effectively complements specific practices in shaman culture. They are not to be abused in any setting as many can lead to a temporary lack of awareness of body and reality itself. This effectively places the subject in harms way, especially without a support party present. Please use any psychedelic plant responsibly, never if you are under 19 years of age*, and only under the supervision of those who have been trained or have experienced the benefits first-hand through education and guidance. Your support party should always be sober, of clear mind and somebody you trust.
- Do not ingest psychedelics with alcohol
- Do not ingest psychedelics without supervision of responsible adults
- Do not combine psychedelics without expert supervision
- Do not use psychedelics as recreational party drugs
- Do not use psychedelics if you are prone to drug-seeking behavior
- Do not use psychedelics as a form of escaping from reality
- Do not use around dangerous environments
- Do not use if you are pregnant or breast-feeding
- Do not use if ignoring responsibilities in life to chase a high
- Do not use if symptoms aggravate a present mental illness
- DO ingest the raw plant whenever possible, rather than smoking it
Most of the psychedelic scare stories ever published were generated by people pursuing their own political or financial agendas, or by people with fundamentalist morals who were afraid of losing their power. In the last century, most of the information intended to vilify psychedelics has been proven false.
The shift in consciousness that has taken over the planet will not enlighten every human being. Some are not meant to experience the shift and will pass on (sometimes when you least expect it). Others are already on board. For those in between (and even for those on board), psychedelics offer a unique window of opportunity “during the high” which is otherwise absent without it. There are so many wonderful elements of consciousness including specific gateways which psychedelics enter, that ego simply has no chance of competing out. Ego tries, but it rarely if ever succeeds. They open a portal of beauty and creativity so large, that you can step into it and enjoy it in a way that is rarely available to the humanity from any other substance on Earth. Only very deep meditative states can match what psychedelics offer, and each state is very different.
Many researchers have been interested in the idea that psychedelics facilitate communication across the brain and, more specifically, how the default-mode network in the brain, arguably science’s best biological correlate of the self, normally works to constrain this.
Two studies have found absolutely no link between psychedelic use and a wide suite of mental health conditions, including schizophrenia, psychosis, depression, anxiety disorders and suicide attempts. For example, people who have tried LSD or psilocybin have lower lifetime rates of suicidal thoughts and attempts.
“Psychedelics” are substances with the ability to expand human awareness beyond our normal modes of perception. Some may be the most amazing substances known to humanity, so potent that just 1/10,000th of a gram can send one on a journey beyond time and space, beyond life and death. Here the psychedelic voyager can unlock and experience the collective evolutionary consciousness of billions of years past and an infinite future.
They allow the user to transcend the body, the personality, and view of the mind from undreamed-of perspectives, experiencing supersensory and extrasensory perception, choose from an infinite variety of “realities,” which can permanently change our experience of life.
Worship involving psychedelic plants and their use in spiritual pursuits can be traced to the beginnings of recorded history. The major role these plants played in the formation of early religions has been documented by several historians.
Each person’s mind and capacity for handling psychedelics is different. Psychedelics are not for everybody. Although most psychedelic trips are experienced as beneficial, some people have had experiences that left them disturbed afterwards. The main reason for these negative experiences is (in my experience) a lack of preparation, rather than anything inherent in the person or in the substance.
5 Powerful Psychedelics
Out of the following psychedelics, I have found Salvia and Ayahuasca to be the most powerful out of body experiences (that can be recalled), and Cannabis to be the most profound to alter daily thinking patterns when taken consistently and with the aid of meditation.
Perhaps one of the most medicinal but least powerful of all hallucinogens, 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.
Cannabis can treat a number of diseases and disorders better than pharmaceuticals, including cancer, fibromyalgia, epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. It has also been found to reduce blood pressure, treat glaucoma, alleviate pain and eveninhibit 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 not noticeable. 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 sensory effects. 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 going on. 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 interpretation. 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, defensive consciousness. And feelings of health and happiness naturally lead to hope, which of itself can be curative.
For a person using marijuana for the first few times, sensory changes occur sequentially, rather than all at once. 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.) Then proprioceptive 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 cascading forth. 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 catharsis.
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 greater insight. 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 disorienting. Over time, and with regular intake, when these higher states of seeing are no longer the focal point of attention, a restructuring of values may emerge.
Given the right dose, individual, set and setting, Salvia Divinorum produces a unique state of ‘divine inebriation’ which has been traditionally used by Mazatec healers. 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 behavior. 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 experience. 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 dose.
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