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"How to Change Your Mind" - Psychedelics

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psychmom posted 7/16/2019 10:52 AM

Just finished reading this fascinating book by Michael Pollan. His discussion of the dissolution of the ego, the snow globe analogy of shaking up our neural pathways and getting out of mental ruts. . . some useful ideas for thinking about some of the effects of trauma myself and other BS may be experiencing.

And it's not only psychedelics (under guided, controlled conditions; he's not advocating dropping acid and heading off to a Phish concert) but also meditation when practiced correctly. Breaking out of mental habits of thinking, including the rumination about the past that sometimes still gets me down.

Anyone else read this book and have comments to share?

humantrampoline posted 7/17/2019 09:34 AM


Thank you for posting the recommendation. I haven't read it, but I'll pick it up now. I probably would have passed if you hadn't mentioned that it goes well beyond psychedelics. That part is interesting, but I wouldn't read an entire book on it. I did read an article recently about using Ecstacy in a clinical setting for PTSD.

J707 posted 7/28/2019 12:38 PM

I haven't read it but plan to check it out. A friend of mine works with her clients using ketamine in a controlled environment, for PTSD and depression. She has seen first hand the rapid results help to speed up their PTSD/depression. She claims that her healing journey from lymes disease started when she did a ceremony with Ayahuasca. She is huge into spirituality, walking with mother nature, meditation, yoga etc. I haven't taking the leap yet but it is all very fascinating to me. To heal at rapid rates.

ibonnie posted 7/28/2019 23:58 PM

Haven't read the book, but I will say there's a lot of research on the benefits of psychedelics.

From a first hand experience, my WH using psilocybin mushrooms made a huge, HUGE, HUGE difference in both his and our healing. I guess technically it could have been described as a "bad" trip? He said he could feel the hurt and pain coming off of me in waves, and he knew he caused it all. He was curled up in a ball, sobbing about how he hurt me, and apologizing over and over.

The next day we had some really great talks about his whys. And honestly, I was very suspicious about this working and really, really pleasantly surprised about the lasting changes after.

It really did feel like before his trip, he logically knew what he had done, but after he understood how I actually felt.

Hallmack posted 9/14/2019 20:58 PM

Iíve always been a big believer in the power of psychedelics to promote positive change. Iíve long wished I could have an experience like this with my wife but I just donít think I could get her to come around. She thinks all drugs are addictive and just bad.

Thumos posted 9/17/2019 18:42 PM

Iím late to this thread, but I did read this book last year. Actually read it on Kindle and then listened to it on Audible back and forth.

I brought it up with my wife as something I was pondering as a way to perhaps heal from the mind movies and trauma. She was horrified that I was contemplating it, even with the caveat that I wanted to do it under medical supervision.

She didnít fully comprehend, or seemed not to, just how traumatic this has been ó and how a fairly conservative man would be driven to consider psychedelics as a way to heal. She seems to be getting it more recently, and has started to share how she is understanding more and more about betrayal trauma.

Iím still considering psychadelics, by the way.

gmc94 posted 9/18/2019 00:15 AM

Havenít read the book. Am a firm believer in the potential healing from psychedelics. Wish I could find someone in my city that does it.

crazyblindsided posted 9/18/2019 17:28 PM

I did a lot of Psychedlics in my youth maybe it is time to do it again

WTFOVER posted 9/19/2019 01:16 AM

Just read an article on this today on business insider.
Was fascinating and there is strong evidence that it can help with depression and anxiety.
Does anyone know of a way to get them or do it under medical supervision???

Endy posted 10/7/2019 23:55 PM

Thank you for posting this, maybe I will try to do more psychedelics.

Rideitout posted 10/9/2019 06:07 AM

Does anyone know of a way to get them or do it under medical supervision???

Sadly, no. All psychedelics are schedule 1 drugs, no doctor can prescribe them, even if they feel they are warranted, and no pharmacy has them to dispense. The only legal way is to get into a clinical trial, and, AFAIK, they haven't run one in years on any psychedelic.

Probably the closest to "legal" way to get them, grow mushrooms at home. Through some of slip of the law, the spores (seeds) are legal to buy/sell/possess for psychedelic mushrooms (P. cubensis being the most common variety). In most areas of the country, they are legal and actually legal to grow, when you pick them, they become a schedule 1 drug. Don't get me started on how ridiculous that is.

Outside of that, go to Phish concert and ask, well.. Anyone.

TX1995 posted 10/9/2019 16:54 PM

Thanks for sharing, I'll check it out. I used to following Ayelet Waldeman on social media and she discussed microdosing and her positive experiences and got quite a bit of backlash.

I was actually just discussing with someone today that the drugs I did in HS must have done some serious damage to my brain since I can't remember jack these days. Of course maybe it's just the trauma from my WH's shitty affair...

Lionne posted 10/12/2019 19:42 PM

I haven't read it either, but my brother, a recovering heroin addict, clean for 20+ years, recently did a round of ketamine treatments for severe depression and anxiety. I really don't think it helped very much. I think there is a member whose son was helped by therapeutic ecstasy treatments for a trauma.

YRMV of course.

tushnurse posted 10/16/2019 15:47 PM

I haven't read the book but I do believe the VA is doing research on PTSD and Shrooms.

I firmly believe that rewiring the neural pathways is essential to overcoming some of this stuff. Having worked w/ TBI pt's and seeing how there is such a huge change in personality from to another, depending on the part of brain impacted it makes sense that chemically we can do this. I do think we need to be a bit more exacting in the chemicals used, and figure out why Ketamine, or X, works for some and not others.

Hopefully in the next few years we will get it figured out and help a whole bunch of folks.

Rideitout posted 10/17/2019 14:00 PM

Hopefully in the next few years we will get it figured out and help a whole bunch of folks.

Hopefully? Absolutely. Likely? Not even a little bit. Pretty much every single psychedelic known is "schedule 1" in the US. Doing research on schedule 1 drugs is near impossible, and, even if you could (legally), getting funding for doing research on a drugs like MDMA, which wouldn't be available for patent, would be completely impossible (as opposed to "near impossible"). MDMA was used relatively often in clinical settings before it jumped into the recreational sphere, and there are a ton of reports of it working for some people. Nobody (well, not nobody, nobody in government) give a single s**t.

Thing is, I've taken my share (and probably yours too) of psychedelics. There is no question in my mind that they change the way you think, in many cases, in a permanent way. I'm not sad that I did it, in fact, I think that a lot of the success I've had in life I can attribute to the ability to "see through" the surface layer to deeper meaning, something that I really started to develop when my "eyes opened" because of my experience with those types of drugs. But people who can see are dangerous, I'm also an example of that, because of how those drugs let me "see through" lots of societal norms to identify what, at the time, I thought the "real reason" was (some of which I'd say helped me, others, not so much).

The term "woke" has been adopted by the MeToo movement, but, before that, my friends and I used to say the same things about stuff like mushrooms, they "woke" people. They started to see the things that were right there in front of them, but they never noticed. And, frankly, if I were in government, I'd be terrified of having a "woke" populace. The wheels of society only keep turning so long as most people are pushing on the spokes. If too many people start asking, "Why am I pushing", well.. The cart stops moving and eventually starts to backslide down the hill. There's another discussion here going on about being a "Nice guy", and this falls into the same category for me. We, as a society, need "nice guys" to keep the wheels turning. Too many people get "woke" and start to act in rational self-interest, the wheels come flying off the wagon. What's good for the individual may be terrible for the group as a whole.

shellofme posted 10/22/2019 11:18 AM

I've been meaning to read that. I listened to an interview he gave about the book.

I have found it helpful to learn and think about how some of what I am experiencing is normal within the realm of suffering from a 'betrayal trauma' that caused PTSD. I've been doing EMDR, and it's gotten a bit better over time, but I still have symptoms of PTSD.

There are a few well known scientific studies on different psychedelics and PTSD. I think the MAPS one is the most well known, but there's research being done on the east coast too. They're studying many different drugs and PTSD and/depression. I find it very interesting. You can look into being a subject. A simple search for
Psychedelic research PTSD
brings up a lot of info.

BearlyBreathing posted 3/8/2020 12:30 PM

There are FDA trials going on right now - I applied for a couple (MDMA and mushrooms). They are rigorous medical trials, totally legit. It involves interviews/sessions without drugs for a couple months with their researchers, then an all day session with the drugs in the presence of two trained researchers and then follow up appointments. Unfortunately they have thousands of applicants and from what I am hearing a lot of the research is being focused on war veterans who have PTSD, and sadly our society has far too many of them as well. Iím hopeful this will be something that can help us in the not too far future.

number4 posted 3/10/2020 00:02 AM

In 2013 I was given ketamine within two minutes of being anesthetized for ECT treatments, for the first two treatments I got. This was at a large, highly regarded teaching hospital in a major metropolitan city. Although there's so much of that time period that I have little memory of, I distinctly remember the doctor handing me a miniature paper cup with what looked like pink liquid in it, telling me, "Studies have shown that given in conjunction with ECT, ketamine has been shown to increase the efficacy of ECT." So I took it, not realizing what it was... not that I cared; they could have told me jumping backwards on one leg would make me better, and I would have done it - I was desperate.

Anyway, of course it's hard to tell what helped, but my recovery from treatment-resistant depression lifted completely by the time I finished my ECT treatments. The nice thing about taking it just as I was about to go under anesthesia is that I didn't have to worry about the 'tripping' part of it, or the hallucinations. If my body did that, it did it while I was under, and when I woke up, everything was pretty standard for coming out of anesthesia.

Funny thing... if you're driving southbound on the 405 in LA toward LAX, there's a sign alerting you that the Ketamine Clinics of LA are the 'Adopt a Highway' sponsors of this particular stretch of road. Pretty good way to publicize your existence.

sorryforeverythi posted 3/20/2020 12:43 PM

I read this when it came out and went to his book signing.

I am a big fan of the book, he has gone of the rails as of late IMHO.

I ended up ordering spores and growing my own. I followed all of the recommendations on set and setting and tried it out.
I think my dose ended up being too low didn't have the mind altering trip i was hoping for but did see some cool colors and shapes.

I was planning on doing another journey with. my partner but my DDay happened so my life has been turned upside down a bit.

I want to do it once things settle down.

i have also been debating on doing an Ayahuasca journey but am torn with the things I have heard about going to Peru but i will do more research.

I highly recommend the book, it was a bit technical at times. If you have Hulu or access to Hamilton's Cornucopia he explains a lot of the science behind it. He has one on the frog venom as well. I am scared to try that but I hear it's pretty amazing.

Joanna1013 posted 4/20/2020 11:54 AM


Yesss!!! I loved this book. It was fascinating on so many levels. I particularly thought the part of the book describes the way psychedelics affect brain activity and essentially shut down the part of the brain that controls self-focused thought. It's interesting that this area of the brain is hyperactive in people who have anxiety and makes total sense.

I read this book before my husband's affair, and I've thought a lot about it since then. We did mushrooms together one time since then, and I was hoping for some sort of transformative experience that would make me feel at peace with it all. That didn't happen, but we did a smaller dose than we could have.

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