Tag Archives | Drugs

The evolution of ecstasy: From Mandy to Superman, the effects of the drug MDMA

Ecstasy_monogram

Via The Independent

Ecstasy is a nickname for the psychoactive drug MDMA.  The drug has been popular among dance music enthusiasts for decades, but the drug has begun to change in recent years, and these changes have led to many adverse outcomes, including death.

In the last few weeks, four people in the UK died after reportedlytaking pills from a “bad” batch of ecstasy – and officers suspect all are linked with a batch of “Superman” pills from Ipswich. Over the last couple of years, throughout both Europe and the US, many users have been hospitalized or have died after taking ecstasy. So many poisonings have begun to occur largely because adulterants—primarily new psychoactive drugs—are now commonly added to ecstasy.

The history

Ecstasy has been one of the most popular party drugs since the 1980s. Despite being illegal, use has been widely available and closely associated with the dance music scene.

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Reflections On The Direct Influence Of Psychedelics On Art

Image: Psychedelic: Optical and Visionary Art Since the 1960s book cover.

Psychedelic: Optical and Visionary Art Since the 1960s book cover.

Via Reset.me:

Psychedelics often trigger a rich flood of visual content. One may for instance experience highly intricate patterns, otherworldly landscapes and mysterious beings — some angelic; others demonic. Colours are frequently perceived as being extremely intense and objects may transform into bizarre and unthinkable shapes. Surely visions like these must be of great interest to visual artists. Still, most psychedelic culture researchers will find it hard to come up with a satisfying list of visual artists who acknowledge the importance of psychedelics in their work. Why is this the case? When it comes to writers and musicians, examples are plenty. Shouldn’t there be as many, if not more, visual artists associated with psychedelics?

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Preparing for Ayahuasca

VisAyaBefore taking an ayahuasca trip how can I prepare?

Go and see Avatar again in 3-D.

Millions of us saw Avatar and, in journeying on Pandora, we discovered a world that is not so distant from the aboriginal’s world: interconnections among plants, animals, the tree of souls, and so forth.

We rode the dragon, which is close to the archetypal visions offered by the plants. With no difficulty, we also entered into fully experiencing the emotions of the movie character who was asleep in his pod while his adventure was being lived by his avatar. This is just like the experience in a ceremony, where you are seated in the maloca but your mind can be on a distant voyage. What’s more, with Avatar you’re experiencing this adventure in 3-D, projected with depth, within a sensory immersion that is continually all around you in a way that’s similar to the visions in a ceremony!… Read the rest

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Ayahuasca Can Help You Communicate with Plant Spirits, and Heal Your Body and Mind

Medicine Hunter Chris Kilham with Goji Berry in China.jpg

Chris Kilham (CC)

If you needed any further persuasion that psychedelic drugs are back in vogue, this hearty endorsement by Newsweek of the foul but powerful brew known as Ayahuasca should do the trick:

Drink ayahuasca and you may see yourself being eaten by a crocodile. You may find a miraculous resolution to a crippling sadness. Or, more likely, you’ll land somewhere in between. Regardless, you will definitely throw up. Author and ethnobotanist Chris Kilham says all of these things have happened to him after drinking this psychoactive Amazonian brew.

If you haven’t heard of ayahuasca, you may soon. While once consumed mainly by natives of the Amazon basin, today, thousands visit Latin American countries every year to imbibe it, with the hopes of seeing profound visions, having religious experiences and—many claim—undergoing immense healing. Ayahuasca now has devoted followers throughout the world.

Kilham, who calls himself the “medicine hunter” and has traveled to and intermittently lived in the Amazon for more than two decades, says that he is a firm believer in the healing properties of the drink, which is made from the bark of a jungle vine called Banisteriopsis Caapi, and usually mixed with other plants like the leaves of the Justicia pectoralis or Psychotria viridis.

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2014: The Year the American Justice System Officially Died

Carey Wedler writes at TheAntiMedia.org:

In 2014, the problem of police brutality forced itself to the forefront of the national conversation following the brutal killing of Americans at the hands of the police. This increased attention has been a success for activists from all walks of life and for the well-being of citizens. The problem of racism and police murders that involve it is finally receiving widespread acknowledgment and opposition.

But as much as the issue of police abuse needs attention, it remains that injustice in America permeates layers of society that transcend law enforcement, race, and problems of direct violence against citizens.

Rather, police brutality is a symptom of much deeper decay in the concept and system of “justice” in the United States. As much as murderous cops escaping punishment is outrageous, here are other travesties that occurred in 2014:

The Senate attempted to stifle the free speech of any journalist it did not define as “press,” calling the bill a protection of the first amendment. Most of Congress cheered Israel on from June through the summer while it pummeled Gaza.

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Kentucky wants drugmaker to pay for OxyContin abuse

Häggström, Mikael. "Medical gallery of Mikael Häggström 2014". Wikiversity Journal of Medicine 1 (2). DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.008. ISSN 20018762.

Häggström, Mikael. “Medical gallery of Mikael Häggström 2014“. Wikiversity Journal of Medicine 1 (2). DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.008. ISSN 20018762.

via Courier Journal:

A common refrain in Kentucky’s hardscrabble hills is that an entire generation has been lost to pain-pill abuse. Addiction has spawned crime, filled county jails and overburdened the too-few treatment centers. Overdoses have torn children from parents and parents from children.

State officials trace the roots of the problem to one potent drug: OxyContin. And for seven years, they’ve been forging ahead with a civil lawsuit that seeks to make drugmaker Purdue Pharma pay. As early as next year, it could bring the first-ever jury trial pitting Purdue against an addiction-plagued state over the painkiller.

“This is about holding them accountable,” Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway said. “They played a pre-eminent role in the state’s drug problem. This started to explode in the mid-1990s when Purdue Pharma was marketing OxyContin.

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Misfiring in the brain’s control system linked to OCD

Allan Ajifo (CC BY 2.0)

Allan Ajifo (CC BY 2.0)

via Medical News Today:

According to the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH), individuals with obsessive-compulsive disorder(OCD) have frequent upsetting thoughts that they try to control by repeating certain rituals or behaviors.

Though healthy people also have rituals – including checking to see that the stove is off before leaving the house – people with OCD obsessively perform their rituals, even though they interfere with daily life.

“While some habits can make our life easier, like automating the act of preparing your morning coffee, others go too far and can take control of our lives in a much more insidious way, shaping our preferences, beliefs, and in the case of OCD, even our fears,” notes Prof. Trevor Robbins, a study author from the Department of Psychology at Cambridge.

He and Dr. Claire Gillan led a team of researchers to investigate the idea that compulsions in OCD result from an “overactive habit-system.”

Read Here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/287291.php

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The Junky’s Christmas

Back in 1993, The Junky’s Christmas by William S. Burroughs, was made into a short claymation film. It was directed by Nick Donkin and Melodie McDaniel, produced by Francis Ford Coppola, and narrated by Mr. Burroughs himself. If you haven’t already watched it, it’s a treat for Burroughs and animation fans alike.

You can watch the short film in its entirety below:

h/t Dangerous Minds.

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23 Things Terence McKenna Said Best, From DMT Sex To Telepathic Octopi

NOAA Ocean Explorer (CC BY-SA 2.0)

NOAA Ocean Explorer (CC BY-SA 2.0)

via Reset.me:

At 25, a friend introduced me to “Surfing Finnegans Wake,” in which a nasally man lectures for three hours, ostensibly off-the-cuff, on the psychedelic, boundary-dissolving experience of reading James Joyce. I remember thinking his voice sounded extra-terrestrial. It was Terence McKenna. Here’s a quote from the lecture, which will hopefully be blurbed on the next jacket cover of Finnegans Wake: “This [Finnegans Wake] comes about as close as anybody came to pushing the entire contents of the universe down into approximately 14 cubic inches.”

A year or so later, having forgotten about McKenna, I found the Psychedelic Salon, a podcast hosted by a friendly man named Lorenzo. It had hundreds of archived talks given by what seemed to be a community of people dedicated to psychedelics, and to a counter-culture movement of sorts. I wasn’t prepared to discover McKenna’s oeuvre.

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Is This a Dream? The Hitchhikers’ Guide to Lucid Dreaming

via Good Times Weekly:

A beginner’s guide to understanding and exploring the uncanny world of lucid dreams.

“Are you dreaming right now?” asks science writer and dream researcher David Jay Brown. We are sitting in the ivy-draped courtyard of Laili, next to a babbling fountain and a rowdy dinner party of 10.

“No!” I say, sure of the answer to such an absurd question.

“But how do you know?” he asks.

“I just know.”

“Well, have you tested it?” He picks up a fork and taps the wall. In a dream, maybe the tines would bend, he says. In a dream, the words on the menu would scramble the minute you looked away and looked back again. And if you plugged your nose and breathed out, you’d feel the air leaving your nostrils, even though they were plugged.

“Nope, not dreaming,” I say, through a pinched nose. But there’s an epiphany scratching around inside his point: even when fork tines bend with no effort and landscapes transform at the mere suggestion of thought, we accept what we’re experiencing in a dream as real.

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