Hallucinations




Via Utne Reader, Jennifer Dumpert explains oneirogens, substances taken for dream enhancement and manipulation: • Mugwort: Promotes lucid dreams, “astral travel,” and visionary dreams. Contains thujone, the most active ingredient in absinthe….



Vaughan Bell writes at Mind Hacks: Oliver Sacks has just published an article on ‘Hallucinations of musical notation’ in the neurology journal Brain that recounts eight cases of illusory sheet music escaping…



Beau Lotto explains in his Ted Talk…

…and Ben Thomas interprets for Huffington Post:

The year was 1943, and the Pentagon had a problem. They’d poured millions of dollars into a new voice encryption system — dubbed the “X System” — but no one was certain how secure it was. So the top brass called in Claude Shannon to analyze their code and — if all went well — to prove that it was mathematically unbreakable.

Shannon was a new breed of mathematician: A specialist in what’s known today as information theory. To Shannon and his fellow theorists, information was something separate from the letters, numbers and facts it represented. Instead, it was something more abstract; more mathematical: in a word, it was non-redundancy…


NYU Professor of Neurology Oliver Sacks spills the beans on hallucinations in the New York Times: Hallucinations are very startling and frightening: you suddenly see, or hear or smell something — something that…



A trope of pulp fantasy is the lightning bolt strike that grants its target strange powers. Mind Hacks discusses how this occurred, in a sense, when a healthy 23-year-old mountain climber was…



I never knew there was such a thing as “psychedelic warfare”. From a vintage Popular Science article, via Parapolitical: Secret U.S. tests show[ed] startling military uses for weird new chemical agents. The so-called…


For many years the United States government has classified more or less all psychoactive drugs, many of them plants sacred to indigenous peoples around the world, with so-called “hard” drugs, making it extremely difficult for researchers to study their mental health benefits. Graham Hancock has written on this topic extensively, including in his essay “The War on Consciousness” included in the disinformation® anthology You Are STILL Being Lied To, and that issue will be at the heart of his first novel, Entangled, which will be published in the fall. Now the New York Times is reporting that policy may be changing:

As a retired clinical psychologist, Clark Martin was well acquainted with traditional treatments for depression, but his own case seemed untreatable as he struggled through chemotherapy and other grueling regimens for kidney cancer. Counseling seemed futile to him. So did the antidepressant pills he tried.

Nothing had any lasting effect until, at the age of 65, he had his first psychedelic experience. He left his home in Vancouver, Wash., to take part in an experiment at Johns Hopkins medical school involving psilocybin, the psychoactive ingredient found in certain mushrooms.

Scientists are taking a new look at hallucinogens, which became taboo among regulators after enthusiasts like Timothy Leary promoted them in the 1960s with the slogan “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” Now, using rigorous protocols and safeguards, scientists have won permission to study once again the drugs’ potential for treating mental problems and illuminating the nature of consciousness…


An interesting article from Plus Magazine on the mathematics of geometric hallucinations (think swirling patterns) and what it says about the brain: Think drug-induced hallucinations, and the whirly, spirally, tunnel-vision-like patterns of…