Tala Ko

Research: spiritual effects of hallucinogens persist

Posted on: Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Interesting. This reminds me of a book by Aldous Huxley entitled “Island,” written after “Brave New World.” The feel-good soma drug of the latter novel is replaced by a hallucinogenic (mushroom? herb? I forget) substance that induces episodes of enlightenment. And instead of a modern world of genetically-engineered people, the island of Pala is home to a society that combines modern science with Southeast Asian / Polynesian practices.
clipped from www.eurekalert.org
In a follow-up to research showing that psilocybin, a substance contained in “sacred mushrooms,” produces substantial spiritual effects, a Johns Hopkins team reports that those beneficial effects appear to last more than a year.
Writing in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, the Johns Hopkins researchers note that most of the 36 volunteer subjects given psilocybin, under controlled conditions in a Hopkins study published in 2006, continued to say 14 months later that the experience increased their sense of well-being or life satisfaction.
“Most of the volunteers looked back on their experience up to 14 months later and rated it as the most, or one of the five most, personally meaningful and spiritually significant of their lives,” says lead investigator
Psilocybin, a plant alkaloid, exerts its influence on some of the same brain receptors that respond to the neurotransmitter serotonin. Mushrooms containing psilocybin have been used in some cultures for hundreds of years or more
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