It’s been said that one of the reasons Humphry Osmond gave Aldous Huxley mescaline was because he knew Huxley had a mastery of language and was uniquely capable of conveying the experience in a way better than most others. The outcome, of course, was hallmark of psychedelic literature The Doors of Perception. Well, here Osmond is at it again with another gent possessing a gift of the gab.
Christopher Mayhew had been the president of a debating society while attending Oxford and at the time of the taping was, believe it or not, a Member of Parliament. Commenting on his experience decades later, he remarked:
“Perhaps half-a-dozen times during the experiment I would be withdrawn from my surroundings and from myself and have an experience, a state of euphoria, for a period of time that didn’t end for me. That didn’t last for minutes, or hours, but for months.”
See some of the original footage, including a follow-up interview decades later, here:
For some more interesting background, from the video description:
Humphry Osmond was the British psychiatrist who coined the term “psychedelic”. This short video documents an experiment in 1955 in which he administered mescaline to Christopher Mayhew, a member of parliament. Mayhew ingested 400mg of mescaline hydrochloride and recorded his experience on camera. The footage was originally supposed to be broadcast on BBC.
Mayhew himself maintains that it was a genuine mystical experience which “took place outside time” and wanted it to be shown. However, an “expert” committee of psychiatrists, philosophers, and theologians reviewed the footage and reached a unanimous verdict that Mayhew’s experience was not a valid mystical experience. So it was never broadcast.
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