I don’t encourage anybody to do psychedelics for any purpose whatsoever. I think that people should be free to make up their own minds based on accurate, complete, and honest information. I do acknowledge that for me, personal experiences with psychedelics have been transformative and I wouldn’t consider them medical. Recreational use has been given a bad name, considered hedonistic and extraordinarily dangerous.
I think, for example, the celebratory use of psychedelics at festivals and concerts can be profoundly healing and inspirational. At the same time, MAPS is focused on providing psychedelic harm reduction services because people sometimes take these substances just for recreation and then deeper material rises to the surface. The use of these drugs explicitly for recreation with the intention of only having an easy happy experience is in some ways a recipe for disaster.
A deeper respect for the intention of these drugs should be involved even if the purpose is celebratory and recreational. For non-medical use to be as safe as possible we need to move to some sort of legalized setting so people can know what they’re getting. The distinction between medical and recreational is in some senses artificial. Sasha Shulgin used to say, there should be no such thing as a casual experiment with psychedelics.
-Rick Doblin, Ph.D., Founder and Executive Director, MAPS
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So what’s so special about this study?
Well for starters, it’s the FIRST successful study done on LSD-assisted psychotherapy since the 1970s…so that’s pretty awesome.
It was a double-blind, randomized, active placebo-controlled pilot study conducted to examine safety and efficacy of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD)-assisted psychotherapy in 12 patients with anxiety associated with life-threatening diseases.
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Check out his interview here first!
Rick Doblin, is an ordinary guy with an extraordinary vision. He started off with an idea, he dropped out of school for ten years where he spent his time tripping and figuring out his life. Then he enrolled back into school and with the help of networking and meeting certain people, he ended up finishing his dream: being the founder of MAPS.
I didn’t want to be a criminal. I didn’t want to be underground. I wanted to be a mainstream, normal kinda guy who just happened to be interested in psychedelics.
This is my favorite quote from his interview:
At the same time, I had graduated finally in ’87, and I had planned to go get a clinical psych Ph.D. to learn to do psychotherapy outcome research with MDMA. I almost got into several pretty great clinical psych Ph.D. programs, but in the end nobody wanted to let me in. That was 1998. Then I was like, what am I going to do with my life? So I went home and smoked a joint.
I want to do the same exact thing as he did…get a clinical psychology Ph.D in psychotherapy with a focus on psychedelics instead of MDMA, but my chances are slim and the path to get there is very rough. But now he’s inspired me to go out and persevere…even if I don’t get what I want the first time, there’s always another way around. It may be harder, but hey I want it badly enough to do whatever it takes to pursue my passion. I’d rather live a life of meaning than half-ass my way through it. Anyway, Rick is my new role model and I hope I get the chance to meet him one day…maybe even go on a “trip” with him if I’m lucky 😛