Entheogens, psychedelics and substances used for spiritual development and the expansion of consciousness.

Psilocybin and Treatment of End-Stage Cancer Anxiety

(Psilocybin and Treatment of End-Stage Cancer Anxiety) "Despite the limitations, this study demonstrates that the careful and controlled use of psilocybin may provide an alternative model for the treatment of conditions that are often minimally responsive to conventional therapies, including the profound existential anxiety and despair that often accompany advanced-stage cancers.

Physical Effects of LSD

"Its effects can be similar to those of LSD, including increased body temperature and heart rate, uncoordinated movements (ataxia), profound sweating, and flushing. The active ingredient mescaline has also been associated, in at least one report, to fetal abnormalities."

Addictive Properties of LSD and Development of Tolerance

Addictive Properties of LSD and Development of Tolerance: "Most users of LSD voluntarily decrease or stop its use over time. LSD is not considered an addictive drug since it does not produce compulsive drug-seeking behavior. However, LSD does produce tolerance, so some users who take the drug repeatedly must take progressively higher doses to achieve the state of intoxication that they had previously achieved. This is an extremely dangerous practice, given the unpredictability of the drug. In addition, cross-tolerance between LSD and other hallucinogens has been reported."

Legal Status of Ayahuasca

"On February 21 of this year, 2006, the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Centro Espírita Beneficente União do Vegetal (the UDV) in the case “Alberto R. Gonzales, Attorney General, et al. Petitioners v. O Centro Espirita Beneficente União do Vegetal et al.” The UDV is now legally allowed to drink ayahuasca (which contains the controlled substance DMT) in their ceremonies here in the US."

Prevalence and Trends in LSD Use Among Young People in the US

Prevalence and Trends in LSD Use Among Young People in the US: "Past-year use of LSD, one of the major drugs in the hallucinogen class, has been hovering for about a decade at its lowest levels recorded by the study (Figure 5-4e). In 2015 the levels of use for students in 8th, 10th, and 12th grade were 0.9%, 2.0%, and 2.9%, respectively. Consistent with most other drugs, use increased during the 1990s relapse and peaked in the mid-1990s. It then subsequently declined to its lowest levels ever in the early 2000s, where it has since plateaued.

Description of Ayahuasca

"Ayahuasca is a psychedelic decoction made from plants native to the Amazon Basin—most often Banisteriopsis caapi and Psychotria viridis—and which contains harmala alkaloids and N,Ndimethyltryptamine (DMT), the latter being a controlled substance scheduled under the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances."

Ayahuasca Folk Healers

Ayahuasca Folk Healers: "Vegetalismo is a Peruvian Spanish term denoting the folk healing traditions of mestizo curanderos, or healers of mixed indigenous and non-indigenous ancestry who use ayahuasca and other 'master' plants for diagnosis and treatment of illnesses (Beyer, 2009; Dobkin de Rios, 1972; Luna, 1986). Known as ayahuasqueros, such folk healers undergo a rigorous process of initiation and training, requiring adherence to strict dietary and sexual abstinence protocols, and sometimes prolonged isolation in the jungle."

Mushrooms and Psilocybin

Mushrooms and Psilocybin: "Psilocybin (4-phosphoryloxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine) is obtained from certain types of mushrooms that are indigenous to tropical and subtropical regions of South America, Mexico, and the United States. These mushrooms typically contain less than 0.5 percent psilocybin plus trace amounts of psilocin, another hallucinogenic substance."