Artwork by Archan Nair
“There can be no more intimate and elemental part of the individual than his or her own consciousness. At the deepest level, our consciousness is what we are – to the extent that if we are not sovereign over our own consciousness then we cannot in any meaningful sense be sovereign over anything else either.” – Graham Hancock
Popular culture follows the traditional Western medicine approach of treating ailments of the mind, body and spirit by diagnosing symptoms, but ignoring the root cause. Most disease, stems from a dis-ease, which is induced by the trauma we experience in our lives. When it is not processed and purged, it is made manifest in our bodies and reflects in our experience of the world. We carry our wounds throughout our lives, and the unhealed parts of our psyche (when left un-repaired) cause anxiety, and depression and rob us from the present moment. Unbeknownst to many, alcohol and nicotine are two of the most dangerous (and addictive) drugs, yet they are used almost daily by millions of people.
In culture’s sub-current there has been a deviation from Western medicine, and what is deemed the “norm”, as an emergence of interest in studying the effects of psychedelic medicines has gained both momentum in interest, and in solid scientific research/results (see: The Therapeutic Potentials of Ayahuasca). When used properly in the right set and setting, are saving lives and allowing a new perception of healing from the inside out.
For thousands of years native cultures have used psychedelic plants as medicines, not as recreational drugs, and the effects have allowed many to be cured of anxiety, depression, addiction, and even PTSD.
Below we explore 5 ways psychedelics are currently saving lives…
5 Ways Psychedelics Are Saving Lives
1. MDMA and PTSD: In treatment resistant cases of PTSD, when medical-grade MDMA was used in conjunction with psychotherapy, 83% of patients were cured – as opposed to just 25% when in psychotherapy alone. With 22 veterans a day committing suicide in the US alone, this treatment could prove to be
2. LSD and Alcoholism: LSD has been used to cure alcoholism with a 45% success rate. Bill Wilson, founder of AA, used LSD himself and tried (but failed) to add this treatment as the 13th step in recovery as he said its ability to spark introspective spirituality is integral in the recovery process.
3. Psilocybin Healing Mind, Body and Spirit: Psilocybin has shown to treat anxiety, depression, and cluster headaches as well as allowing the ability to quit smoking. This non-addictive substance allows for the slowing down of areas in the brain that are overactive in a depressed mind. In a John Hopkins study on the effects of psilocybin 80% claimed to have an increased sense of well-being, with 30% claiming the psychedelic experience with psilocybin to be the most important experience of their lives.
Psilocybin has also been shown to cause neurogenesis, which is the regrowth of braincells. It is important to note, that caffeiene is actually more toxic than psilocybin.
4. Ibogaine and Addiction: Ibogaine has been used to treat heroin and pill addiction without withdrawal.
5. Ayahuasca and Overall Healing: Longterm effects of ayahuasca have shown increased levels of serotonin, and ritual ayahuasca drinkers are less likely to have addictions. The intense spiritual experiences that coincide with the ayahuasca experience has left many feeling a deeper connection to nature and the universe – and the dream-like state ayahuasca induces allows for the unlocking of traumatic memories, in order to process them, and purge the negativity. By healing and processing new neural pathways begin to form in the mind, causing peace for what was, and for what is now. Many say that the ayahuasca experience is like having 30 years of therapy in just one night.
To learn more about the healing effects of psychedelics, and how they are saving lives – check out the video below from Reset.me