Crossposted from Reflections Journal.
Several interviews from DMT - The Spirit Molecule have been released on YouTube. This new film from Rick Strassman et al. explores the research and potential of DMT, an entheogen that has long been used by indigenous shamans. As I recently posted here, the naturally occurring DMT in our brains may be a key to ascension.
Particularly insightful, Daniel Pinchbeck describes the sixties experimentation with hallucinogens as a "failed attempt at a mass, cultural voyage of initiation" because there were no "wisdom traditions" to form a context for the experience. Now that there is more information available from shamanic systems, he speculates that it may be possible to complete that initiation.
My husband and I just watched the documentary Hofmann's Potion on the discovery of and early experimentation with LSD. One of the things that becomes clear from those interviews is how little many of the early researchers knew about just what they were dealing with. Foisted on the public, largely by the egocentric Timothy Leary, with no safety parameters and no cultural enforcement of respect for this gateway into another dimension, it was misused and abused. The consequences were fairly disastrous. Many years ago I had a conversation with shamanic healer Christina Pratt about such use of hallucinogens. She described it as "free-wheeling through non-ordinary reality." The danger, she told me, was that because that world is so closely linked to this one, the damage an unguided person, with no clear intention, can do there can also adversely affect this reality.
Speaking of Christina, and of cultural initiations, her most recent broadcast, mentioned here, is probably her most fascinating and poignant show ever... and that is saying something. I listened to the podcast last night. Everyone should listen to it. She describes our core problem, individually and collectively, as having no formal initiation into adulthood. Most of us are children in adult bodies reacting to adult situations like children. Hear. Hear. Speaking as an "Adult Child" (of an Alcoholic) I can absolutely attest to this being the central drama of my entire life.