Monday, June 22, 2015
The Consciousness Series: Mushroom Forest
Psilocybin mushrooms, also known as psychedelic mushrooms, magic mushrooms and shrooms, are mushrooms that contain the psychedelic compounds psilocybin and psilocin.
The psychedelic drug in magic mushrooms may have lasting medical and spiritual benefits, according to new research by Ronald Griffiths from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Maryland.
A 2011 study involved 18 healthy adults, average age 46, who participated in five, eight-hour sessions with either psilocybin — at varying doses — or placebo. Nearly all the volunteers were college graduates and 78% participated regularly in religious activities; all were interested in spiritual experience.
Ultimately, Griffiths and his colleagues want to see if the same kind of psychedelic experience could help ease anxiety and fear over the long term in cancer patients or others facing death. Researchers are also studying whether transcendental experiences could help spur recovery from addiction and treat other psychological problems like depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Fourteen months after participating in the study, 94% of those who received the drug said the experiment was one of the top five most meaningful experiences of their lives; 39% said it was the single most meaningful experience.
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