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Sunday, March 10, 2024

Do psychedelics make everyone better? Maybe the answer is obvious ....

Douglas Rushkoff

 Article spotted on Twitter by R.U. Sirius: "Ego tripping: Why do psychedelics "enlighten" some people — and make others giant narcissists?" 

"Crossing paths w. everyone from Leary and McKenna to  RAWilson & R.U. Sirius Rushkoff was an early proponent of  the crossover between technology & psychedelics." Rushkoff is is quoted a lot, so your mileage may vary depending on what you think of how his thinking has evolved. 

More here. 

1 comment:

michael said...

The answers for this Q are not found in this article. I'm not saying THE answer has arrived, but this doesn't even get close to what the state-of-the-art is.

I'd suggest to anyone who's interested, see the philosophical disagreements between two young hotshot neuroscientists who are deeply involved in the pharmakokinetics of psychedelics. Check out Dr. David E. Olson of UC Davis, vs. Dr. Gul Dolen, currently at UC Berkeley.

Olson, a fascinating character, has demonstrated we can engineer the "trip" out of psychedelics and people will still get the benefits fo them, worldwide. Psychedelics without the trip? Whatta trip! Yea, Albert Hofmann engineered the high out of a version of LSD 50 years ago in order to make a suitable placebo...and it turns out it treats cluster headaches really well. Just an example.

Dolen found all the psychedelics, including Ketamine, open up the "critical periods" (where RAW and Leary write "imprinting" it's now neuoplasticity/critical periods) that were thought to be closed. An LSD trip that lasts for 10 hours (around average) probably opens up the critical period, Dolen finds, (depending on set/setting/therapeutic aims) for up to THREE WEEKS. Psiloybin? Probably around two weeks.

What this implies is the environment/setting following a trip is absolutely awesomely crucial: if Elon trips, then goes right back into his "you're the smartest man who ever lived, boss!" environment, it probably doesn't help him be any less of a prick at all; if a battered woman goes back into a violent, toxic environment that she was traumatized in: no bueno.

Dolen thinks the trip is necessary with the therapist to concentrate on the memories of the Bad Stuff so it can all be reframed within the opened critical period surrounding the trauma.

Re: the discussion of John Lilly as a "creep" in another thread here recently: RAW pointed out that Lilly re-framed psychedelic drugs as "metaprogramming substances." Say what you want about how "scary" and "wrong" psychedelics are, but what about metaprogramming substances? Does those scare ya, too? And, it turns out, Lilly was right more than he knew if Gul Dolen's thesis about Why Psychedelics Work is correct.

Mutt: Yeah, but he was a creep.
Jute: I think I know someone who could benefit from psychedelic therapy. (Looks at Mutt, side-eyed.)