LSD, Psilocybin (Magic Mushrooms), and Ketamine have been part of the counter-culture for decades, with evidence that they are used more commonly across a wide class of people than many would have imagined. Business tycoons, artists, professional athletes, and Silicon Valley powerhouses like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates are all famous for experimenting with LSD, and new research proves, at least on a mathematical level, that these psychedelics undoubtedly elevate consciousness.
Psychedelic advocate Timothy Leary described an ego-generated perception of self and the world as a “reality tunnel.” Leary says his own “reality tunnel” was ripped apart with the use of LSD and psychedelics, at which time it was revealed to him that life is nothing as he understood it to be – arguably a version of higher awareness.
Picking up where Leary left off, a study recently published in the Journal, Scientific Reports asked “What is the level of consciousness resulting from a psychedelic state?”
Consciousness is roughly defined in the study as “awareness that vanishes when we sleep,” but most of us with any experience in an altered state (drug induced or not) can attest that there is much more to consciousness than this.
Nonetheless, the study found a mathematical difference in the activity of certain brain regions in those who were on psychedelics, and those who were not. The study states,
“These drugs normally have profound and widespread effects on conscious experiences of self and world. More specifically, they appear to “broaden” the scope of conscious contents, vivifying imagination and positively modulating the flexibility of cognition. At the same time, the states they induce are not accompanied by a global loss of consciousness or the marked changes in physiological arousal as seen in sleep or anaesthesia. These observations raise the question of whether theoretically-grounded measures of conscious level would be changed in the psychedelic state.”
Moreover, Silicon Valley seems to have rediscovered LSD in the form of microdosing of late, to improve creativity and cognitive function. At the microdose level (usually about 10-20 micrograms), LSD is potent enough to boost alertness and change the brain’s function, without causing hallucinations. Psychedelics like LSD or psilocybin are also credited with reducing anxiety, and enhancing over-all well-being at low doses.
These effects have a biologically proven foundation. Many hallucinogens, including LSD produce a potent mind-altering effect primarily by mimicking the effects of the brain chemical serotonin, which regulates our mood. Specifically, LSD activates 5-HT2A receptors in the pre-frontal cortex, which increases activity of the chemical, glutamate, in this region. Glutamate enables signals to be transmitted between nerve cells, and plays a role in learning and memory.
The question remains, and is rather glaring in examples such as Bill Gates, the globalist aligned with a New World Order agenda, compared to people like Timothy Leary, George Carlin, or the Beatles (all professed users of psychedelics) do LSD, psilocybin or other commonly used psychedelics affect everyone the same way?
Syd Barret, the singer/songwriter for Pink Floyd may have died due to an acid overdose. Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, and Amy Winehouse all died from supposed drug addictions, but they don’t provide a healthy scientific sample because they also reportedly abused alcohol, and not just psychedelics.
There are also anecdotes of advanced yogis taking LSD and being completely unaffected by it, with the suggestion that they had already altered their brain chemistry and physiology so profoundly with years of meditation, that the normal influence of such drugs are rendered mute.
Ram Dass tells stories of giving LSD to Neem Karoli Baba aka Maharaji twice, and both times the doses did nothing to him. As one commenter put it, “When you live in Detroit, you don’t need to take a bus to Detroit.”
Interesting then, that there are practices, even within the Eastern traditions of meditation, where yogis or monks take small doses of psychedelics right along with their meditative practice. They increase the dose over time but they are not interested in these drugs to conquer the world, only to stay awake long enough to eradicate their egos through longer sessions of meditation and contemplation. These drugs (sometimes even cobra venom) simply help to keep them alert – awake on the meditation cushion, instead of slumping into a deep sleep. It is still a subtle process, and those who abuse it often go mad or become suicidal.
Those who have been on an acid trip, may abruptly be forced to face whatever comes up from the depths of their subconscious. While this also happens in meditation, it usually happens slowly enough that our awakened level of consciousness can handle it.
Often, these shadows, revealed to someone too quickly, can cause extreme mental duress. On the other hand, many versions of the spiritual path can be quite brutal when asking us to address our inner demons. So LSD, psilocybin and other psychedelics may be no worse than a pushy guru. You don’t have to look far to find stories of a Zen master slapping a student in the face with his sandal, and the student suddenly having a major spiritual revelation. This is a compassionate act, at its root, but if the shock is administered at the wrong time, a far worse reaction might result – for instance, turning someone from their spiritual path completely.
Psychedlic ego death is likely not much different than ego death resulting from meditation or deep contemplation, but the truth is we don’t really know yet.
Do psychedelics improve mental health, ruin it, or have varying affects depending on our current state of enlightenment? Do psychedelics simply amplify one’s ability to carry out existent plans, such as in the movie, Limitless, where our acumen to handle a million things increases just by taking a mysterious pill, but we then pay the price by burning out our adrenals, or using up our life force?
Or do psychedelics provide a gateway to the spiritual realms, where we can meet spirits, get otherworldly advice, and see beyond the veils of earthly living? There has been increasing interest in psychedelic drugs, but their use must be approached with discernment. There are promising signs that they can be used to help us wake from our slumber, but just as one can have a premature kundalini awakening simply from “sitting” too long, all methods to achieve enlightenment must be utilized with wisdom and care.
Image: Gorbash Varvara/Shutterstock.
Physicists Suggest All Matter Could Be Made Up of Energy ‘Fragments’
Matter is what makes up the Universe, but what makes up matter? This question has long been tricky for those who think about it – especially for the physicists.
Reflecting recent trends in physics, my colleague Jeffrey Eischen and I have described an updated way to think about matter. We propose that matter is not made of particles or waves, as was long thought, but – more fundamentally – that matter is made of fragments of energy.
From Five to One
The ancient Greeks conceived of five building blocks of matter – from bottom to top: earth, water, air, fire and aether. Aether was the matter that filled the heavens and explained the rotation of the stars, as observed from the Earth vantage point.
These were the first most basic elements from which one could build up a world. Their conceptions of the physical elements did not change dramatically for nearly 2,000 years.
Then, about 300 years ago, Sir Isaac Newton introduced the idea that all matter exists at points called particles. One hundred fifty years after that, James Clerk Maxwell introduced the electromagnetic wave – the underlying and often invisible form of magnetism, electricity and light.
The particle served as the building block for mechanics and the wave for electromagnetism – and the public settled on the particle and the wave as the two building blocks of matter. Together, the particles and waves became the building blocks of all kinds of matter.
This was a vast improvement over the ancient Greeks’ five elements but was still flawed. In a famous series of experiments, known as the double-slit experiments, light sometimes acts like a particle and at other times acts like a wave. And while the theories and math of waves and particles allow scientists to make incredibly accurate predictions about the Universe, the rules break down at the largest and tiniest scales.
Einstein proposed a remedy in his theory of general relativity. Using the mathematical tools available to him at the time, Einstein was able to better explain certain physical phenomena and also resolve a longstanding paradox relating to inertia and gravity.
But instead of improving on particles or waves, he eliminated them as he proposed the warping of space and time.
Using newer mathematical tools, my colleague and I have demonstrated a new theory that may accurately describe the Universe. Instead of basing the theory on the warping of space and time, we considered that there could be a building block that is more fundamental than the particle and the wave.
Scientists understand that particles and waves are existential opposites: A particle is a source of matter that exists at a single point, and waves exist everywhere except at the points that create them.
My colleague and I thought it made logical sense for there to be an underlying connection between them.
Flow and Fragments of Energy
Our theory begins with a new fundamental idea – that energy always “flows” through regions of space and time.
Think of energy as made up of lines that fill up a region of space and time, flowing into and out of that region, never beginning, never ending and never crossing one another.
Working from the idea of a universe of flowing energy lines, we looked for a single building block for the flowing energy. If we could find and define such a thing, we hoped we could use it to accurately make predictions about the Universe at the largest and tiniest scales.
There were many building blocks to choose from mathematically, but we sought one that had the features of both the particle and wave – concentrated like the particle but also spread out over space and time like the wave.
The answer was a building block that looks like a concentration of energy – kind of like a star – having energy that is highest at the center, and that gets smaller farther away from the center.
Much to our surprise, we discovered that there were only a limited number of ways to describe a concentration of energy that flows. Of those, we found just one that works in accordance with our mathematical definition of flow.
We named it a fragment of energy. For the math and physics aficionados, it is defined as A = -⍺/r where ⍺ is intensity and r is the distance function.
Using the fragment of energy as a building block of matter, we then constructed the math necessary to solve physics problems. The final step was to test it out.
Back to Einstein, Adding Universality
More than 100 ago, Einstein had turned to two legendary problems in physics to validate general relativity: the ever-so-slight yearly shift – or precession – in Mercury’s orbit, and the tiny bending of light as it passes the Sun.
These problems were at the two extremes of the size spectrum. Neither wave nor particle theories of matter could solve them, but general relativity did.
The theory of general relativity warped space and time in such way as to cause the trajectory of Mercury to shift and light to bend in precisely the amounts seen in astronomical observations.
If our new theory was to have a chance at replacing the particle and the wave with the presumably more fundamental fragment, we would have to be able to solve these problems with our theory, too.
For the precession-of-Mercury problem, we modeled the Sun as an enormous stationary fragment of energy and Mercury as a smaller but still enormous slow-moving fragment of energy. For the bending-of-light problem, the Sun was modeled the same way, but the photon was modeled as a minuscule fragment of energy moving at the speed of light.
In both problems, we calculated the trajectories of the moving fragments and got the same answers as those predicted by the theory of general relativity. We were stunned.
Our initial work demonstrated how a new building block is capable of accurately modeling bodies from the enormous to the minuscule. Where particles and waves break down, the fragment of energy building block held strong.
The fragment could be a single potentially universal building block from which to model reality mathematically – and update the way people think about the building blocks of the Universe.
Republished from TheConversation.com under Creative Commons
Neuroscientist Claims That Consciousness Itself Is Its Own Energy Field
A neuroscientist has suggested in a new theory that our consciousness is derived from a field of electromagnetic waves given off by neurons.
The study published last month in the journal Neuroscience of Consciousness is entirely based off a theory absent of tangible evidence. However, the author of the research Johnjoe McFadden said that his hypothesis could offer a way forward for robots that think and feel emotions.
McFadden believes that neuron waves of electrical activity get sent out and as they propagate across the brain, they help compose our entire conscious experience.
Johnjoe McFadden, is a molecular geneticist and director of quantum biology at the University of Surrey. McFadden points to flaws in other models of consciousness as the reason that we don’t have sentient artificial intelligence or robots capable of achieving consciousness.
McFadden’s hypothesis swerves away from most traditional neuroscientists, who generally see consciousness as a narrative that our brain constructs out of our senses, perceptions, and actions. Instead, McFadden returns to a more empirical version of dualism — the idea that consciousness stems from something other than our brain matter.
McFadden’s theory adapts the idea of “dualism,” which is the belief that consciousness is a supernatural force. Dualism has long been rejected by scientists and ruled pseudo-science, but McFadden has attempted to apply a scientific explanation for the idea, which hasn’t been done before.
Neuroscience news reports that the theory is based on scientific fact:
“The theory is based on scientific fact: when neurons in the brain and nervous system fire, they not only send the familiar electrical signal down the wire-like nerve fibres, but they also send a pulse of electromagnetic energy into the surrounding tissue. Such energy is usually disregarded, yet it carries the same information as nerve firings, but as an immaterial wave of energy, rather than a flow of atoms in and out of the nerves.”
It’s also a fact we have an electromagnetic field surrounding our brain is well-known and is detected by brain-scanning techniques such as electroencephalogram (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG) but has previously been dismissed as irrelevant to brain function and supernatural. Instead, McFadden contends that the brain’s information-rich electromagnetic field is, in fact, itself the seat of consciousness, driving the ‘free will’ of an individual.
“How brain matter becomes aware and manages to think is a mystery that has been pondered by philosophers, theologians, mystics and ordinary people for millennia,” McFadden said in a press release published by Medical Xpress. “I believe this mystery has now been solved, and that consciousness is the experience of nerves plugging into the brain’s self-generated electromagnetic field to drive what we call ‘free will’ and our voluntary actions.”
Ann Arbor becomes latest city to decriminalize “magic” mushrooms and other natural psychedelics
(TMU) – The city of Ann Arbor, Michigan, has effectively decriminalized psilocybin or “magic” mushrooms along with other natural psychedelics in the latest sign that public opinion across the U.S. is continuing to turn against prohibitionist policies.
On Monday, the Ann Arbor City Council unanimously voted in favor of a resolution that would make it the city’s lowest-ranked law enforcement priority to the investigate or arrest anyone planting, cultivating, purchasing, transporting, distributing, using or possessing entheogenic plants or plant compounds.
The resolution applies to all psychedelics derived from plants and fungi, including psilocybin mushrooms, ayahuasca, ibogaine, mescaline, peyote and other substances with hallucinogenic properties deemed illegal under state and federal law.
The council also requires the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office to halt the prosecution of those involved in the use of entheogenic plants and plant compounds.
Ann Arbor now joins a growing list of cities including Denver, Colorado, and the California cities of Santa Cruz and Oakland that have decriminalized all entheogenic plants. Other cities including Chicago and Austin are considering similar measures. A ballot measure that would legalize the use of psilocybin in therapeutic settings will also be voted on in the state of Oregon this November.
The move to de-prioritize law enforcement around psychedelics was spearheaded by the efforts of local grassroots advocacy group Decriminalize Nature Ann Arbor, or DNA2.
At the beginning of the year, councilmembers were skeptical about any move to decriminalize psychedelics. Since then, they’ve found themselves convinced by evidence of the therapeutic and spiritual benefits of psychedelics, including for mental health treatment and treating addiction, reports MLive.
Councilmember Zachary Ackerman cited the opening of a $17 million psychedelic and consciousness research center by Johns Hopkins Medicine as proof of “the tremendous potential of these future medicines.” The Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore is currently conducting clinical trials to find out whether the drug is suitable as a prescription drug for the U.S. market.
Councilmember Jack Eaton described the council’s unanimous backing for the decriminalization resolution as carrying on the city’s legacy of backing the local decriminalization of marijuana during the 1970s, when the plant was still illegal under state and federal law.
The resolution doesn’t allow for the commission of crimes or any significant violation of state or federal law, and any use of entheogenic substances that pose a threat to public health and safety could require intervention by law enforcement bodies.
In the resolution, entheogenic plants are defined as the full spectrum of plants and fungi that contain indole amines, tryptamines and phenethylamines “that can benefit psychological and physical wellness, support and enhance religious and spiritual practices, and can reestablish human’s inalienable and direct relationship to nature.”
The resolution also states that psychedelic substances can be used to address substance abuse problems, addiction, recidivism, trauma, post-traumatic stress, depression, anxiety, grief, cluster headaches and other debilitating conditions.
“The use of entheogenic plants, which can catalyze profound experiences of personal and spiritual growth, have been shown by scientific and clinical studies and traditional practices to be beneficial to the health and well-being of individuals and communities in addressing these conditions,” it states.
Psilocybin mushrooms are currently considered a Schedule 1 narcotic by the Drug Enforcement Agency.
However, psilocybin – the main chemical component of the mushrooms – was designated as a “breakthrough therapy” by the FDA in 2019 due to the positive results of psilocybin in treating depression, anxiety, addiction, and other mental health problems.
Studies have also shown how a microdose of psilocybin—far from the level needed for a full-blown trip—actually increases the creativity and empathy of participants.
Other researchers have also found that psilocybin has provided effective help to patients struggling to quit other addictive substances such as cigarettes.
The newfound recognition of psilocybin therapy as a valid treatment has eroded old stereotypes of psilocybin as some intoxicating and hallucination-inducing party drug that drives its users insane – a reputation that largely grew out of the hippie counterculture of the 1960s when they were widely known as “psychedelic” or “magic” mushrooms.
The resolution further notes that entheogenic plants have been the basis of spiritual practices by human cultures for thousands of years, yet those who seek them for the sake of improving their health and wellbeing must risk arrest and prosecution to obtain them.
“Decriminalization of naturally occurring medicines is necessary for progress,” councilmember Jeff Hayner said in a press release from DNA2 last week, reports Detroit Metro Times. “We can no longer turn a blind eye towards the wisdom of indigenous peoples, and the bounty the earth provides. I have been moved by the testimonies of those who have found profound relief from the use of entheogenic plants.”
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