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Magic mushrooms may be therapeutic
January 23rd, 2012
03:30 PM ET

Magic mushrooms may be therapeutic

Rave-goers and visitors to Amsterdam before December 2008 may be intimately familiar with magic mushrooms, but there's little scientific knowledge on what happens to the brain while tripping.

Now it appears that more research is warranted. A growing number of studies suggested that perhaps the mushrooms' key ingredient could work magic for certain mental disorders.

New research in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences sheds light on why one of the mushrooms' hallucinogenic chemical compounds, psilocybin, may hold promise for the treatment of depression. Scientists explored the effect of psilocybin on the brain, documenting the neural basis behind the altered state of consciousness that people have reported after using magic mushrooms.

"We have found that these drugs turn off the parts of the brain that integrate sensations – seeing, hearing, feeling – with thinking," said David Nutt, co-author of the study and researcher at Imperial College London in the United Kingdom.

Nutt is also Britain's former chief drug adviser, who has published controversial papers about the relative harms of various drugs. He was asked to leave his government position in 2009 because "he cannot be both a government adviser and a campaigner against government policy," according to a letter in the Guardian from a member of the British Parliament.

Psilocybin is illegal in the United States and considered a Schedule 1 drug, along with heroin and LSD. Schedule 1 drugs "have a high potential for abuse and serve no legitimate medical purpose in the United States," according to the Department of Justice.

But in the early stages of research on psilocybin, there's been a bunch of good news for its medicinal potential: psilocybin has shown to be helpful for terminally ill cancer patients dealing with anxiety, and preliminary studies on depression are also promising.

Nutt's study is also preliminary and small, with only 30 participants. His group used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to look at how the brain responds to psilocybin, from normal waking consciousness to a psychedelic state.

The study found that the more psilocybin shuts off the brain, the greater the feeling of being in an altered state of consciousness, he said. It's not the same as dreaming, because you're fully conscious and aware, he said.

The medial prefrontal cortex, the front part of the brain in the middle, appears to be crucial - it determines how you think, feel and behave. Damage to it produces profound changes in personality, and so if you switch it off, your sense of self becomes fragmented, Nutt said. That's what happens when psilocybin decreases activity in it.

"Some people say they become one with the universe," he said. "It's that sort of transcendental experience."

Another brain region that psilocybin affects is the anterior cingulate cortex, which is over-active in depression, Nutt said. Some patients with severe depression that cannot be treated with pharmaceuticals receive deep brain stimulation, a technique of surgically implanting a device that delivers electrical impulses directed at decreasing activity in that brain region. Psilocybin could be a cheaper option, Nutt said.

It's counterintuitive that a hallucinogenic drug would de-activate rather than stimulate key brain regions, although other studies have shown a mix of results regarding psilocybin turning brain areas on and off, said Roland Griffiths, a professor of psychiatry and neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Griffiths was not involved in Nutt's study, but has also researched the effects of psilocybin.

Even if this drug gets approved some day, don't expect to be able to pick up a prescription for psilocybin at your local pharmacy, Griffiths cautioned. There's too much potential for abuse, he said.

Although scientists have found many positive effects of psilocybin in experimental trials, there are of course potential dangers. Some people have frightening experiences while on psilocybin. The fear and anxiety responses of magic mushrooms can be so great that, when taken casually in a non-medical setting, people can cause harm to themselves or others. They may jump out a window or run into traffic because of a panic reaction.

The drug would have to be administered in a controlled setting in a hospital, if found in further research to be an effective and safe therapy for certain mental illnesses, Griffiths said. It would not be appropriate for people who already have psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia, since psilocybin can exacerbate those symptoms.

But among healthy volunteers, Griffiths and others have found that people may have long-lasting positive effects from the vivid memories of being on psilocybin (in a controlled, experimental setting). People report mystical experiences of feeling the "interconnectedness of all things," which can be life-changing.

"People claim to have an enhanced sense of self, more emotional balance, they're more compassionate, they're more sensitive to the needs of others," he said. "They have more well-being and less depression, but they're not 'high' in any conventional sense. They feel like their perceptual set has shifted."

The memories of the psilocybin experience, and positive outcomes that users attribute toward them, can last as much as 25 years, research has shown.

Still, there's just not enough known yet about the long-term safety of psilocybin to say whether it could also do damage to the brain, Griffiths said.

"There’d have to be changes in the brain for these long-lasting memories and attributions to occur," Griffiths said. "We don’t know how those changes occur, and why."


soundoff (349 Responses)
  1. ashrakay

    Preaching to the choir. As usual, people are finally catching up with what drug users have known for the last 40 years. For the record, I've never known anyone to take mushrooms and jump out of their window. Must of them could barely get off of the couch. That is just more anti-drug propaganda. LSD and other psychotropic drugs do open your mind and make you smarter. Just don't abuse it, and it won't abuse you.

    January 23, 2012 at 20:16 | Report abuse | Reply
    • funked

      At 36, I haven't consumed a cap in over 10 years, I have only ever smoked pot otherwise, never tried any other ill drugs.

      At that time, I was a dealer (powder + hard) and an opportunistic Criminal, and tripped over 1000 times likely. Well at that time I seen who I really was and DID NOT like it, I have an IQ of around 136 and never realized what a nasty, obnoxious person I had become. Well, I stopped all drugs (except pot), I attained my M.P.H. and now I have helped thousands through therapy over the last 5 years.

      Any one who swears all drugs are gateways & bad with no chance of helping people, need to get out of their comfort zones, they can NEVER understand that good Christians do not Judge. I am proof that not all people fit into a nice neat box.

      January 23, 2012 at 21:53 | Report abuse |
    • Jeraco

      "They may jump out a window or run into traffic because of a panic reaction."

      Will the author please cite his source for this information? Sounds like Reefer Madness to me.

      January 23, 2012 at 22:19 | Report abuse |
    • lolarites

      Once in the 70's, my ex husband brought home a black guy from work. We were cooking some shrooms on the stove and asked the guy if he wanted some. He said, you actually think those mushrooms will get you high? We said sure. He said, you white people sho' is crazy. The last thing we heard, which was about two weeks later, he was in Philadelphia.

      January 23, 2012 at 22:24 | Report abuse |
    • James

      It is called wigging out.

      January 23, 2012 at 22:34 | Report abuse |
    • clint

      If people on mushrooms and lsd really thought they could fly why not take off from the ground intead of jumping off of buildings.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:07 | Report abuse |
    • carla

      @jerico, I'm with you. I'd like to know the citations also. I'm thinking they are citing from the movie "reefer madness"

      January 23, 2012 at 23:19 | Report abuse |
    • Johnny Orlando

      As a college student, I can say for sure that doing drugs like LSD or mushrooms do no make you smarter. You just see and do things differently. The fact that you think that cements the idea that they only make you feel intellectual

      January 23, 2012 at 23:36 | Report abuse |
    • ashrakay

      @Johnny Orlando, I totally disagree. The first time I did LSD I started seeing exponential expansions or objects. My mind could actually fathom for the first time in my life the power of exponential growth. I could also hear intricacies in music such as bass lines that I never even knew how to distinguish before. On other occasions, I was able to see/experience fractals in light waves. I also obtained a much deeper appreciation of art. I was finally able to "see" how Newton's gravitational law equation worked. These are experiences that are the foundation of many more complex concepts that I've later been able to build upon with quantum mechanics and molecular biology. Psychotropic drugs make you smarter. I will admit if all you do on drugs is sit around and watch cartoons, it probably won't improve your mind in any way though.

      January 24, 2012 at 00:02 | Report abuse |
    • Sho' is crazy

      "Once in the 70's, my ex husband brought home a black guy from work. We were cooking some shrooms on the stove and asked the guy if he wanted some. He said, you actually think those mushrooms will get you high? We said sure. He said, you white people sho' is crazy. The last thing we heard, which was about two weeks later, he was in Philadelphia."

      This has got to be one of the funniest replies I've ever read in a comment section. Still trying to figure out where they were that made Phily the punchline...

      Anyway, I can say from personal experiences @ Grateful Dead shows, camping w/ friends, and once taking a cap @ school that your environment and company is paramount! MM's are not something to be taken lightly. True introspective can only come from an open mind willing to let go long enough from societal norms. As to their effect on illness, I can only assume that a paradigm shift in thought process and brain activity could be highly beneficial.

      January 24, 2012 at 00:10 | Report abuse |
  2. tictoc

    mabey congress needs some magic mushrooms to come up with some job ideas!

    January 23, 2012 at 20:18 | Report abuse | Reply
    • funked

      They have to get rid of the OBSTRUCTIONIST'S otherwise known as the PARTY OF NO, REPUBS//jw

      January 23, 2012 at 21:55 | Report abuse |
    • sonic10158

      Sorry, but that happened in 2008, but the democrats made things even worse than the GOP ever did

      January 23, 2012 at 22:35 | Report abuse |
    • Jobuca

      Excellent suggestion. They might get some work done.

      January 23, 2012 at 22:42 | Report abuse |
  3. emilymaria

    If only alcohol provided the insight into humanity and our existence that mushrooms can provide.
    ...Only then it would be illegal, like pot and mushrooms.
    Too bad the US chose to cultivate tobacco rather than something of benefit to society.

    January 23, 2012 at 20:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark

      True dat!!!

      January 23, 2012 at 20:26 | Report abuse |
  4. Chillin

    They are therapeutic. And just like anything else they should be used in moderation to get the most out of the often life changing experience. Adults should be free to explore their own consciousness in the privacy of their own homes without government intervention.

    January 23, 2012 at 20:30 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ashrakay

      ... or while camping in a state park. 🙂

      January 23, 2012 at 20:57 | Report abuse |
  5. BillyBob_from_Mojave

    Duuuuude !

    January 23, 2012 at 20:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Sadie Boyd

    I think the more respectful we are and the more willing we are to learn about all drugs (coffee to psilocybin); we can educate people of the risk and benefits in a civilized way. It is preposterous that alcohol is legal and marijuana and others are not. Tobacco killed both of my parents. I don't blame anyone, they didn't know the dangers. Once people are old enough and informed enough, we should allow adults to make their own decision. We still have a choice between diet coke with carcinogens or regular coke with high fructose corn syrup. Let's treat adults like adults and children as children. Get the kids out the bars (there have been cases of toddlers accidently drinking) and put protective laws over them, but, let the rest decide for themselves.

    January 23, 2012 at 20:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. jonnyLonnie

    I can testify to this study. After suffering from severe depression for two years I went on a trip to the beach with my friends and ate a few grams of mushrooms. It was only under the influence of a little psilocybin, that I was able to realize that I had the power to change the way I was feeling and acting, and get out of my depressed state. Without a doubt, that was the single moment that I can point to that has led to a whole new, mentally and socially healthy life for me.

    January 23, 2012 at 20:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chieftain

      umm no thats not what it does, it doesn't make you "happy" it makes you see life in whole different way, it can be a negative experience on a life outlook but thats not a necessarily a bad thing

      January 23, 2012 at 21:03 | Report abuse |
    • josh

      i agree with jonny, the only 2 times i boomed i had intense periods of euphoria

      January 23, 2012 at 23:10 | Report abuse |
    • Don

      Chieftan, you don't know what you're talking about.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:45 | Report abuse |
  8. zero_gee

    "he cannot be both a government adviser and a campaigner against government policy,"
    What a load of happy horse crap that statement is; it highlights exactly what is wrong with big government and big business today. Exactly what use is an "adviser" that is not allowed to offer a different perspective? What does a sycophant add to the discourse? Government; once again putting the "moron" in "oxymoron".

    January 23, 2012 at 20:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. paganguy

    After using my mushroom for an hour my eyesight is not that good for a couple of hours.

    January 23, 2012 at 20:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • joebob

      you're supposed to eat them, not stick 'em in your eye...

      January 23, 2012 at 22:39 | Report abuse |
    • bob

      Maybe he stuck his eye on the shroom

      January 23, 2012 at 23:23 | Report abuse |
  10. chieftain

    that stuff is for psychological therapies, it makes you hate material life and all that comes with it. its good for shamanistic type of rituals

    January 23, 2012 at 20:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Nowpower

    http://deadspin.com/5549389/mushroom-tea-murder-man-removes-friends-still+beating-heart

    January 23, 2012 at 21:04 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chieftain

      thats pretty strange but one thing is true, shrooms sharpen your senses to the point that if someone gives you an eye contact you perceive it completely different and in your mind that person gave you a bad eye and it can lead to a fight, depends on situation though

      January 23, 2012 at 21:16 | Report abuse |
    • zero_gee

      Deadspin? Not. I live in Crescent City and know Jarrod Wyatt. Wyatt is mma fighter who was a steroid pumped psycho with a methamphetamine addiction. He supposedly had ingested all three the day that he murdered his room mate. He was clinically paranoid schizophrenic (yes; he heard voices) well before the incident. I noticed that this so-called "deadspin" site conveniently left those facts out. Acting like you are piecing together the truth but leaving key points out is nothing but "spinning" the truth.

      January 23, 2012 at 21:21 | Report abuse |
    • tacc2

      And that's why you shouldn't drink mushroom tea with crazy people. They're crazy, they can't handle it.

      January 25, 2012 at 11:21 | Report abuse |
  12. chieftain

    being on shrooms does not make you "happy" theres no euphoria or stuff like that, those who say they have such experience never tried it and are lying. shrooms are a 'spiritual' type of drug and should be used for purpose of trying to discover meaning of life etc

    January 23, 2012 at 21:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • josh

      not everyone has the same trip, you should know that if you've done them. I felt euphoric for a small time period both times i took them.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:12 | Report abuse |
    • The_aviator

      Why can't a spiritual experience include euphoria? I have experienced euphoria on p. cubensis mushrooms and I can assure you that I have a lot of experience with psychedelic drugs.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:13 | Report abuse |
    • tom

      Mushrooms don't make you feel any one way. People might feel euphoric or scared or they might discover the meaning of life while on mushrooms. Or they might not. The effects of the mushrooms are completely subjective to any given user, and you are mistaken to think that mushrooms only are to be used in one way.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:21 | Report abuse |
    • Yea

      Ha ha, not euphoric? I can remember countless times laughing at absolutely nothing.... DMT: also another euphoric, eye opening experience... Everything in moderation.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:49 | Report abuse |
  13. Phil

    So you could take a few doses of mushrooms instead of being on pills all your life? I believe it, but big pharma will keep it illegal even for medicine forever.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ah ha

      drugs are dangerus if used...... Least that Uncle Sam has preached for the last 80 years. As it turns our the US got it all wrong, they legalized and bad drugs and mad the good drugs illegal. Giving all rights to big pharm to slowly poisen us in the name of profit and no facts.

      January 23, 2012 at 21:16 | Report abuse |
  14. Nowpower

    Many of you will know of Terence McKenna. He was sort of the Timothy Leary of shrooms. He postulated that mushrooms allowed the hunter gatherer humans to succeed and develop. On the physical level mushrooms improve visual acuity, actually improving distance vision significantly albeit temporarily. They also increase energy levels and physical strength. Finally, they have a Viagra type effect on males increasing sexual arousal and stamina significantly and for several hours. Early neolithic cave drawings identify a human figure being speared. He believes that these artworks reflect the shaman's ego death which occurs during strong trips. I encourage you to check him out on youtube.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. ah ha

    Only goes to show that the so called war on those evil drugs, is just that a war of evil against people doing no wrong.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Nowpower

    @ chieftain Respectfully, I disagree. My experience is that lower doses DO in fact produce mild to strong euphoria while heavier doses lead to the internal examination which can result in the apparently emotionally painful ego death. Heavier doses often bring a sense of loss of control which can induce fear. As the trip intensifies, the fear can grow exponentially as the sense of loss of control magnifies. Those who fight the emotions are likely to go even deeper into the fear. But I do agree that consuming this substance is not to be taken lightly and hopefully reflects the seekers search for spiritual enlightenment.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chieftain

      my friend i am more than sure you haven't tried shrooms, it is not an "euphoria" drug its a "discovering thyself" spiritual like experience which for most of the time is about realism and meaning of your existance and state of your life.

      January 23, 2012 at 21:23 | Report abuse |
  17. saywhatyoumean

    Yes, more study is needed on these so-called Schedule 1 drugs that supposedly have no medicinal benefit. Tell that to the Marriage Counselors who prescribed Ecstasy back in the 70s before it hit the streets and became illegal. Or the studies in Britain that recently showed promise to schizophrenia from using CBD from Marijuana. And these drugs are in the same class as the highly addictive Cocaine and Heroin? Yet Americans companies can't even do research on these drugs because of the puritan, archaic lawmakers we have.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Dan

    Nintendo wins again.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Bill

    I smoked cigarettes for 5 years during college. I wasn't thinking about quitting. I took some mushrooms, had an very enjoyable and enlightening experience, and quit smoking cigarettes cold turkey. I never wanted one again, and it's been 20 years.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. joe

    I had a crazy, scary Mushroom trip that was NO GOOD for my well being. Never again... although the trip in Entourage was funny... maybe...

    January 23, 2012 at 21:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Juanita Baker

    I am a manic , bi-polar, and PTSD. I live a normal productive life. But in the last 3 weeks I have gone to stuttering and shaking. My doctors (3 of them ) say its all in my head. (Really, duh). But I smoked 1/2 a joint and was problem free for 3 days!! Could you imagine what drugs COULD do for some of us who are a part of society. We are all not drug seekers, some of us really do NEED it.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jose

      Juanita,

      Are you prone to headaches or migraines? There is some new studies that show that a narrowed jugular vien or viens will show the symptoms you are describing. Do you feel better at night than in the morning?

      January 23, 2012 at 23:23 | Report abuse |
  22. chieftain

    shrooms are not "happy" and 'euophoria" type of drug it doesn't make u go kill people either its everything to do with spiritual path and crying and stuff like that, the closest i could describe experience is "meeting your maker"

    January 23, 2012 at 21:30 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Susej

      What, are you the only person that ever tried the drug? How can you know how it effects everybody else? What if I told you drinking urine was a euphoric experience for me? Give people a break - you don't know everything.

      January 23, 2012 at 22:56 | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      @chieftan Actually, I have taken them several times and did have euphoria on some of the trips. Some not as much. I think you get the experience you need at that time. Some will experience euphoria. You act as though you know everything for everyone. I think you need a few more shroom trips.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:02 | Report abuse |
    • balli

      Chieftain, what are you talking about? I HAVE taken shrooms on a number of occasions and I have definitely felt euphoric. I've also had "fun" while tripping. I agree with the idea that tripping can be a spiritual experience but that doesn't preclude euphoria or fun. Although you've been presenting yourself as some sort of authority, your comments make me wonder if you've ever tripped. I suggest taking some shrooms and opening your mind to the possibility that just because you feel a certain way doesn't categorically imply that other people can't feel differently. Or maybe you just don't understand the vocabulary.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:03 | Report abuse |
    • biz

      Next time you do it, put a candle in a corner of the room opposite of where you are sitting (make sure you don't burn the house down), turn the tv on static, turn the lights out, and just sit on the couch and enjoy the show.

      January 24, 2012 at 00:19 | Report abuse |
    • biz

      Oh yeah, Play some music also!!

      January 24, 2012 at 00:24 | Report abuse |
    • tacc2

      Susej: Actually, if it's reindeer urine from one who's just had a supper of delicious aminita mushrooms...

      January 25, 2012 at 11:00 | Report abuse |
  23. rtbrno65

    They'll never legalize shrooms because if everybody did them it would end all these artificial divisions between us, such as racism and xenophobia, and the corporate-government oligarchy will lose their power over everyone.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Aldous Huxley

    Thanks to Richard Nixon and an apparently STILL overwhelming majority of paranoid Christo-Fascists, miracles such as LSD, psilocybin and peyote are held under lock and key by "Schedule I" classification, even though they have absolutely ZERO potential for being addictive or habit-forming, and they also do not lead people to go out driving and KILLING people like HARSH ALCOHOL!!! The prudish Judeo-religious freaks in this country have ruled for too long, incorrectly vilifying Native American spirituality as "devil worship", trying and murdering "witches" in Salem, MA, among other heinous CRIMES, and then they find out only later that they were WRONG! DEAD WRONG!

    January 23, 2012 at 21:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Matt

    So slooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow on the uptake. The rest will will get there eventually.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. chieftain

    it would be interesting to see cold blooded murdered in prison given shrooms, in about hour after that youd see them crying, begging God for forgiveness and being all religious. its actually an interesting experience

    January 23, 2012 at 21:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chieftain

      murderers*

      January 23, 2012 at 21:44 | Report abuse |
  27. Dave Johnson

    I haven't jumped out a window or run into traffic yet!!!

    January 23, 2012 at 21:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Dave

    Tripping on shrooms while you're dying of cancer, and on top of that it's in a hospital... you couldn't pay me to submit myself to that bad trip! let them have some pot, at least when your buzz get's killed with that you don't have post traumatic stress disorder.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chieftain

      you dont have any post traumatic stress disorder after shrooms, you feel completely normal afterwards.

      January 23, 2012 at 21:54 | Report abuse |
  29. Dick Hertz

    Worst high I've ever had.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Too High

    Witnessed a couple near fatal accidents when friends were whacked on shrooms...

    January 23, 2012 at 21:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • carla

      I have seen real fatal accidents where alcohol was used. What's your point.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:38 | Report abuse |
    • Jonathan

      Also seen plenty of near death experiences not on any drugs. With people smoking cigarettes. With people drunk. What's your point? There are plenty of crazy ass schizo's and multiple personalities out there that put themselves and many other people in danger constantly. Should we outlaw them?

      January 24, 2012 at 00:42 | Report abuse |
  31. chieftain

    people who expect party/happy/euphoria-like sensation with shrooms you better stick to different stuff, shrooms are good only for spiritual experience and discovering yourself

    January 23, 2012 at 21:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • dumbo

      you have just started taking shrooms, right? be quiet please, you're making an ass out of yourself

      January 25, 2012 at 17:57 | Report abuse |
  32. Aldous Huxley

    People who have bad trips are usually the kinds that take way too much (because they're party-animal Neanderthals who have no respect for something that is powerful like shrooms).....and they also probably like really crappy music.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. JR

    I used to love eating the magic mushrooms, years ago. They are really great on homemade pizzas.

    They grow in abundance, in the Olympic Peninsula of Washington state. Just go to any cattle ranch and look under a cow pie, you then can pick your magic mushroom.

    Make sure you wash them before eating.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. chieftain

    and btw its not psilocybin or thc that makes you high as some poeple might believe, its your liver malfunctioning which produces the high.

    January 23, 2012 at 21:59 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mary

      Goodness, you are full of false information. Geez

      January 23, 2012 at 23:04 | Report abuse |
  35. Sara

    I took mushrooms 3 times back in college. 2 experiences were fantastic – a fun time. But, the one I remember best was terrifying. Absolutely horrible, fear inducing scariness. At the time, I was convinced that I was going to die. Now, I view the things that I "saw" that evening to be interesting – a learning experience. But, I agree with the part about controlling this drug. It is not good for people who cannot let go of control. That being said, I do not see why this could/should not be a perfectly viable, legal drug for people with certain diseases.

    January 23, 2012 at 22:04 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chieftain

      people who NEVER tried it will say its "fun" or "terrifying" ..thing is none of that happens, it simply makes you more humble and aware, sensitive to surrounding and kinda makes you understand life in a spiritual way where material/carnal pleasures have no place.

      January 23, 2012 at 22:10 | Report abuse |
    • Sconnie

      I too am 2-1. I saw a guy on my dorm room floor that took shrooms, then called his parents, told them he was going to die, and hung up. Needless to say, Mom and Dad were a bit worried...

      January 23, 2012 at 22:24 | Report abuse |
  36. dewgee

    how can anyone that has never tried it even be stupid enough to make remarks. once again, repeating what you were taught years ago by uneducated dimwits. reefer madness is a classic example how they twisted the truth to a degree that idiots really believe if you smoke a joint ( or try a small amount of shrooms) you will jump out of windows and murder people. blind DO lead blind. do what you like in moderation in your own place and time. it will not kill you to learn about yourself instead of standing in line and being lied to. As in pain, If you have never experienced it, you cannot truly understand. trust me, i been listening to this crap for over 60 years. i still enjoy short "trips" for a little inner peace and relax while enjoying a little inner imagination cruising. try it, you'll like it...

    January 23, 2012 at 22:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Chris

    Look yes the Gov. is on the wrong side of drugs such as lsd, magic shrooms, dmt and others but lets face it if you want to do them you can. Sure its hard and sure its a pain to get a hold of them but if you are smart and do them and are responsible with them odds are you are not going to get caught. I don't need to gov. to tell me what I should and should not put into my body. If you lack the know how and ability to get these types of drugs then it might not be the best idea for said person to try them.

    January 23, 2012 at 22:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • carla

      I"m not sure I agree with your argument Chris. The point is, it shouldn't be illegal. It shouldn't be hard to get. That criminalizes it. Most companies do random UA's. Most people can't risk it if they want to keep their careers. The government doesn't make it hard to get all kinds of medications as long as they get something out of it through the pharmaceutical companies.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:34 | Report abuse |
  38. a slozomby

    thank you richard nixon for the war on drugs and making certain plants and fungus's illegal.

    meanwhile the list of side effects on prescription drugs gets longer and longer and longer.

    January 23, 2012 at 22:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. MiGrant

    D'uh!! What the hell do you think Timothy Leary was talking about all those years ago??!!
    This is not news folks!

    January 23, 2012 at 22:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. cromalyn

    actually chieftan, you're not entirely correct. for those people who use them for a trip, they can be very fun. laughing until you can't stop or your mouth cramps up fun. smiling so much and feeling wonderful about the world and everyone in it. at times, it can be spiritual, but it can also be simply a good time. you don't get euphoria like you may with opioids but there is a euphoric sense about it. so many people try to apply this "spiritual" tag to lsd and caps when its really what you make of it. if you go deep into the woods, sit by a creek and meditate, you may have a spiritual experience or you may not. if you eat some stems and go look at the sidewalk lamps in the rain, it will blow your mind and you will end up laughing yourself silly for the next two hours.

    January 23, 2012 at 22:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Bob Bichen

    I can understand bans on cocaine and heroin, as they primarily give you the "smores" through horrendous addiction. Meth (especially the versions now made with far nastier substances) is a scourge of the planet. Alcohol is also terribly addictive, like nicotine, and together (along with obesity) represent our worst health issues in the U.S. related to lifestyle. But marijuana, psychedelic mushrooms and LSD are simply not the kind of drugs that cause crime other than drug related arrests and convictions. Better to decriminalize and control purity of drugs than to ban them and incarcerate citizens. I'll tell you this much, if you legalize weed, LSD, MDMA, mushrooms, and even coke, you probably would see a lot less crime as drugs like heroin and meth would be harder to come by and not worth the extra cost and trouble. I'm in my 40s now and likely wouldn't partake even if they were legal, but the drug war is a collossal failure in the U.S.

    January 23, 2012 at 22:28 | Report abuse | Reply
    • carla

      Bob, I agree. I also think that anything that the earth provides, should not be legislated. Meth, heroin, are man made. Someone else on this thread also mentioned how the government is so ready to medicate for mental health and physical health with medications with horrible side effects and yet they won't allow pot or other natural things to be used. It's all about the $$. I'm just about 50, am educated, and I'm for personal rights. Let's get government out of what we eat, drink,smoke, or what we do in the bedroom.

      January 23, 2012 at 23:31 | Report abuse |
  42. Aldous Huxley

    Stupid government is always too busy forcing crap on us because they think they know what's better for us than we do. This is just one example. (Another would be abortion....as if the government has any right to tell a woman what to do with her body). Meanwhile we have a $15.3-trillion deficit to magically overcome! Hmmmm, how could we possibly increase revenues? I wonder.....

    January 23, 2012 at 22:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Smokey

    Magic mushrooms "may" be therapeutic? I don't know about that, I mean it's not like they've been used as a spiritual and psychological healing agent for thousands of years or anything, right? C'mon. The arrogance of a government that believes it can ban through legislation something that grows in the earth is an abomination. Mushrooms were here before governments and they'll be here after governments are long gone.

    January 23, 2012 at 22:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Dave

    Bill Hicks was right...we are all one

    January 23, 2012 at 23:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. alientech

    So doctors can prescribe anti-psychotic drugs like they are candy even though some side effects can be deadly and at the same time mushrooms are on schedule 1. Crazy government.

    January 23, 2012 at 23:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. fingers

    To "sonic10158". Geo Bush Sr called Regan's tax cut "voodoo economics" and he left the country in pretty good shape. Tax cuts for the well-to-do do NOT pay for themselves. They do NOT create jobs. "Trickle down" strategy did not work. Geo Bush Jr's own advisors' counseled him the same. Go to. . . . http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pGsBkLHZ44&feature=related
    Also go to . . . http://money.cnn.com/video/news/2011/07/29/n_vause_debt.cnnmoney/

    January 23, 2012 at 23:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • D'OH

      Wrong forum perhaps?

      January 23, 2012 at 23:32 | Report abuse |
  47. arlo_23

    perhaps days of enlightenment are here for us all. For anyone that has taken the "Magic" mushroom has had his or her own trip. For me, there was no "magic" just an clear understanding of my "Real" surroundings-emotionally, mentally, physically and dare i say it- spiritually. The mushroom is not magic. It is not an illusion. It is an earth born chemical that opens and closes bits and pieces of the individual mind to expeirience our true mental abilities.

    January 23, 2012 at 23:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. carla

    Hmm, 25 years of feeling good. I don't care what's happening to my brain. if the next 25 years could feel good, that would take me to 75 and then, whatever. Bring it on.

    January 23, 2012 at 23:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. mushroom lover

    I have been eating mushrooms.for 35 years. I put them in everything and I espouse the value shrooms plays in helping me look at things from a different view. All of this is natural. BTW, it is WASP'S WHO FEEL.THEY MUST TELL EVERYBODY WHAT GO USE. Did you know that you could serve the rest of your life in prison on the installment plan by just minding your business and using these substances yourself. WASPS STINGING SHEEP!!!!

    January 23, 2012 at 23:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • bob

      hemlock is natural to

      January 23, 2012 at 23:24 | Report abuse |
  50. Sgt. Pepper

    It's funny that our culture allows the sale of over-the-counter 'male enhancement supplements,' injecting more testosterone into to an already overly aggressive and sex-crazed male psyche, but any substance which garners creativity and unity, and allows the user to question things deeper, is taboo. I guess it's more profitable to sell you on the idea that you are inadequate, creating the demand for 'self improvement,' then conveniently supplying the 'cure.' The use of psylicibin and similar psychotropic compounds would ultimately kill the market for such things, as one learns that he or she doesn't need to buy what they're pushing!

    January 23, 2012 at 23:44 | Report abuse | Reply
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