Those seeking a ‘high’ will use any excuse . . .

I’m fed up with articles trying to claim that this, or that, or the other hallucinogenic agent, or narcotic, or whatever, has beneficial properties unrelated to its physiological effects.  If anyone claims that in your hearing, tell them from me that they’re talking nonsense, would you, please?  A drug is a drug is a drug.  It’s not a gateway to godliness!

The latest trend is towards a South American hallucinogenic drug.

Thousands are flocking to sample the elixir and swear by its therapeutic properties, despite warnings from scientists and users that ayahuasca can be dangerous and even prove fatal, especially when mixed with other drugs.

Ayahuasca’s proponents, who include celebrities such as Sting, Paul Simon, Tori Amos and Lindsey Lohan, say the plant offers a spiritual experience like no other. Many also say it has allowed them to overcome traumas that no other conventional therapy can tackle.

There’s more at the link.

There is no such thing as a ‘spiritual experience’ from a drug.  It may provide the hallucination that one is having such an experience, but that’s all it is – a fake.  It’s not real.  As soon as the drug wears off, so does the ‘spiritual experience’;  and though one may recall it with pleasure, it’s no more than a chimera.  It’s like alcohol, which can make even unattractive people look highly desirable the more one drinks.  When one wakes up next morning, reality is back . . . sometimes with a vengeance!

Please don’t get caught in the trap of thinking that drugs do anything other than alter the chemical balance of your mind and body.  They’re not a gateway to God, or a path to the spiritual, or anything of the kind.  They’re just drugs.  They offer only a false ‘experience’ that’s transient and never lasts – and they will eventually kill you, one way or another, if you abuse them long enough and often enough.  I’ve seen that reality far too often to be in any doubt about it at all.



  1. The stupidity of drugs as a path to God and spirituality was popular in the 1960s but soon crashed on the sharp rocks of reality. Apparently enough time has lapsed that those who fail to remember the lessons of history have forgotten and they are attempting to repeat the failure.

  2. A perhaps minor quibble: Science has discovered that some drug components can make permanent, or difficult to reverse, changes in the brain.

    The history of mankind is of a constant search for mind altering substances. Why is this?

  3. … on the other hand, there's more than one psychoactive drug that does have some beneficial property very much related to its physiological effects. At least when used to treat a medical condition…

    It's very much a question of definitions whether or not psychological trauma or even a nonstandard or undesired mental disposition is a medical condition; at any rate attempts of treating such by forcefully altering the chemical balance of mind and body are well-documented and go back millenia. Every now and then someone's claimed a success (by some definition), even.

    And that's not going into the religious side. But, from my reading, it seems that ayahuasca is relatively tame (both in psychoactive effects and lethality) compared to the substances used by some other shamanistic/pagan religions…

    (I've seen some folklorist's notes on the dosages shamans used with some members of the families /Solanaceae/ and /Ranunculaceae/ … did note that, possibly due to local variances in growth, reported "therapeutic" or "religious" dosages would occasionally significantly exceed the plant's globally averaged LD50.)

  4. As soon as the drug wears off, so does the 'spiritual experience'; and though one may recall it with pleasure, it's no more than a chimera.

    On the other hand, what has been called 'spiritual experience' through out history is nothing more than a biochemical state of mind. Drugs like psilocybin may or may not replicate these experiences short term. I wouldn't know because I don't do drugs. But then again I have never had a 'spriritual experience' either. So, its likely that both phenomenon are hallucinatory in nature.

    I don't drugs. I don't religion either. I view both as impediments to my long term future self. Drugs are self-destructive in nature (even marijuana) and many advocates of religion express opposition to the bio-medical curing of aging as well as cryo-preservation (medical time travel – an ambulance ride into the future), thus making organized religion as much of a threat to my long term future self as recreational drugs.

    I do not understand the hostility on the part of organized religion and, by extension, the alt-right to what is being colloquially called "transhumanism" by the media. This hostility makes absolutely no sense to me.

  5. Given that those celebrities are not commonly regarded as being mentally stable or well-adjusted, it is possible (if somewhat unlikely) that altering their brain chemistry did provide them some benefit.
    That said, seeking moral guidance from them, is likely worse than seeking the same in a puff of smoke, or an oddly colored liquid.

  6. Kurt9:

    Organized, long established religions will always act like a government, and wander away from important reasons for their existence, as all governments do.

    I'm not aware that the alt-right considers itself attached to organized religion. It champions Christianity for it's historical record of enabling the rise of Western Civ, IIRC. I don't think they take guidance from any branch or chapter, though. I must point out I am hardly an expert on the subject. Still reading up on the alt-rt.

  7. People always have this desperate need for a "red herring" of some kind in their life (to take their mind off of the more serious aspects of life).
    Whether it be television, sports, popular music, video games …
    …something they can feel good and have a sense of humor or awe about, to distract them from the hum-drum boring perfunctory details of "everyday living" …as well as from the traumas of the adverse potential dangers involved with existing as well.

  8. There's an aspect to this that makes me think that we aren't doing our job. Evangelism is turned up to eleven, but more mundane human stuff isn't being dealt with. Communities are breaking down, and all of this tribal 'junk' is being turned to in desperation.

    And I actually think it is possible there could be therapeutic benefits to some of this stuff- I just don't think it is sane to think that's going to happen without proper parameters.

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