Disinformation readers who have read Graham Hancock‘s recent books Supernatural and Entangled are well aware that hallucinogens can be powerful and highly effective medicine, but until recently US government policy more or less prohibited any scientific research using them. The tide is starting to turn, as this article from the LA Times makes clear:
What a long, strange trip it’s been. In the 1960s and ’70s, a rebellious generation embraced hallucinogens and a wide array of street drugs to “turn on, tune in and drop out.” Almost half a century later, magic mushrooms, LSD, Ecstasy and ketamine are being studied for legitimate therapeutic uses. Scientists believe these agents have the potential to help patients with post-traumatic stress disorder, drug or alcohol addiction, unremitting pain or depression and the existential anxiety of terminal illness.
“Scientifically, these compounds are way too important not to study,” said Johns Hopkins psychopharmacologist Roland Griffiths, who conducted the psilocybin trial.
In their next incarnation, these drugs may help the psychologically wounded tune in to their darkest feelings and memories and turn therapy sessions into heightened opportunities to learn and heal.
“We’re trying to break a social mind-set saying these are strictly drugs of abuse,” said Rick Doblin, a public policy expert who founded the Multidisciplinary Assn. for Psychedelic Studies in 1986 to encourage research on therapeutic uses for medical marijuana and hallucinogens. “It’s not the drug but how the drug is used that matters.”
Regulators and medical researchers remain wary. But among at least some experts at the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration, the shift in attitude “has been dramatic,” Doblin said.
Researchers explored the usefulness of hallucinogenic agents as an adjunct to psychotherapy in the 1950s and ’60s. But allegations that hallucinogens were used in government-funded “mind control” efforts, freewheeling experimentation by proponents like Dr. Timothy Leary, and the drugs’ appeal to a generation in revolt quashed legitimate research for decades…
[continues in the LA Times]