My sophomore year in high school was a time of spiritual awakening. I don’t actually remember that moment when I realized that there was more to life, my life then could be seen through the eyes of a 15 year old teenager. I just had a growing awareness that there more something more to my day-to-day life that I could not quite grasp. Something outside of my normal perception. Some kind of unexplained knowing that something, some force, some mystery held together the perceivable world l lived in. I devoured every book I could find to help me better understand what it was that I was experiencing. I read Buddhist texts. Hindu Texts. Books on mysticism. I read most of what Herman Hesse wrote. I thought I could somehow squeeze what I was trying to understand from the pages of all those books.
I finally came across a book written Ram Dass aka Richard Albert called Be Here Now. It blew the doors open for me. His book opened my eyes to the potential of psychedelic drugs and to maybe experience some of what I was reading about. Call it a synchronicity. Out of nowhere a guy I went to high school with offered to sell me some mescaline.
My first experience of taking mescaline needed to be carefully planned for. I had a lot of fear and uncertainty. It’s one thing to read about taking a psychedelic drug. It is a totally different thing to actually take one for the first time. Despite what I had read, I was totally unprepared for what I experienced. There is nothing anyone could have told me, or I could have read that could have prepared me for the experience I was about to immerse myself in.
This medicine allowed my mind to dissolve. I was invited into an awakening of a deeper sense of being, into a direct and immediate experience of the Mystery of Life Itself. I had a profound a sense of oneness with everything. To the universe. My sense of time dropped away. I was directly connected to the fabric of existence itself that held the known world together. I had an experience of what I can only call the universal intelligence. An intelligence outside myself. An intelligence that gifted me with knowledge, grace and understanding about my life that could not have arisen from my own mind.
Psychedelic medicine is an integral part of my spiritual practice. It continues to have a direct and immediate impact on how my life unfolds. It is not something I do often. Nor it is something I have used consistently throughout my life. There have been long periods of time where I have abstained from using psychedelics. The middle part of my life, from my 30’s throughout my late fifties were not conducive to using psychedelic medicine. Being married, raising a child and pursuing a career took all the attention I could gather.
For me, the most challenging part of any psychedelic experience is integrating what I have learned into my life. It is somewhat similar to downloading a new operating system into your nervous system. A lot to integrate. During the mid-part of my life, I did not have the energy or attention a psychedelic experience demanded.
Over the last five years, I have again started using psychedelic medicine. I could feel it calling to me. I have been taking what is referred to as a heroic dose. That equates to 6 to 10 grams of mainly psilocybin mushrooms. There is a saying, “at that dose the medicine does you, you don’t do the medicine”. The medicine invites you to totally surrender to whatever the universal intelligence is. I have been able to experience psychedelic medicine with the Huichol Indians of western Mexico, the Shuar Indians of the Ecuadorian rainforest and most recently with Kallawaya Indians of the Bolivian Andes. I am also currently leading medicine ceremonies for small groups of people in Southeast Michigan.
Psychedelic medicine is an integral part of my spiritual journey. It has inextricably impacted my life by helping to facilitate the experiences I need to help me grow and deepen as a person and bring myself forward as authentically as possible. This medicine continues to help make available the greatest possibilities for my life.
Humans have been using psychedelic medicine for thousands of years. Currently the predominant psychedelic medicine being used is ketamine and psilocybin mushrooms. Ketamine is an FDA approved drug that needs to be prescribed by a psychiatrist. Psilocybin mushrooms are now legal in several states and cities. With increasing legalization on the way. I like the term coined by Terrance McKenna. He said there is an archaic revival happening.
Lastly, psychedelic medicine is not for everyone. It is something that needs to resonate with you. Not everyone’s nervous is built to handle the experience of expanded consciousness. Many people are challenged when confronted with the imminent need to let go of the structures and beliefs that hold their lives together. And maybe most importantly, a person does not have to take a psychedelic drug to experience a state grace and expanded consciousness. There are many ways to get there.
If you have any questions regarding psychedelic medicine, please do not hesitate to contact me through this blog.
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