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British Psychiatrists Call For End Of LSD Taboo


By James Donahue


British psychiatrists now debate the possibility of using LSD for therapeutic treatment of patients under controlled conditions. They know, as many psychiatrists including Dr. Timothy Leary knew 30 years ago, that the drug is especially effective at unlocking obsessive behavior.


Leary, who paid for his fascination with mind altering substances by serving time in prison, proved that certain psychedelic drugs like LSD and psilocybin mushrooms helped habitual felons break the cycle of repetitive criminal offense. He also used the drugs effectively to alter other undesirable and unwanted behavior patterns.


After it was accidentally “invented” by Swiss Chemist Albert Hofmann in 1938, LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) was considered an exciting new tool for not only psychologists, but even the U. S. Military experimented with the drug as a behavior modifier for military purposes.


Even though it showed exciting promise, the drug was banned by governments as an illegal substance after it became popular as a street drug used for recreational purposes in the 1960s and 70s.


Government propaganda was circulated about the “dangers” of LSD. Stories were told about people jumping from rooftops to their death, thinking they could fly, or becoming involved in fatal car crashes while under the influence of the drug. Stories also were circulated about “bad trips” where users experienced sensations of panic and terror, and sometimes lost their minds. The information also talked about dangerous “flash backs” by users that put them back into a psychedelic state weeks or even months after they used the drug. 


People who have experienced LSD, however, will tell you that none of the stories were based on fact. Dr. Leary, who advocated extensive use of LSD by everybody as a way of expanding the mind and pushing humanity into a new spiritual and mental path toward enlightenment, admitted taking excessive amounts of the drug without experiencing any physical or mental harm.


Several famous writers, including Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs, Abbie Hoffman and Aldous Huxley, all used LSD at the time they were producing some of their most creative work. The drug appears to be an enhancer of brain activity and a natural aide to mental and spiritual evolution.


Inventor Albert Hofmann, who discovered the effects of the drug by accidentally ingesting a small quantity of it, was an obvious user throughout his life. Hofmann, who recently died after celebrating his 100th birthday, claims he last used LSD three years prior to his death.


Leary, who spent time in prison for his public stand in support of LSD, died of cancer in 1996. The drug had nothing to do with his death.


One British psychiatrist, Dr. Ben Sessa, openly risked controversy when he made a presentation on the possible therapeutic benefits of LSD during a meeting of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in March, 2006. It will be the first time this subject has been openly discussed by the organization in 30 years.


Dr. Sessa continues to promote the use of the drug by his profession. His latest article appeared on the blog site Alchemists Smile.


“I really want to present a dispassionate medical, scientific evidence-based argument, Sessa said. “I do not condone recreational drug use. Scientists, psychiatrists and psychologists were forced to give up their studies for socio-political reasons. That’s what really drives me.”


Indeed, it should. LSD is a powerful mind expanding drug that arrived almost as a last-ditch gift to the world at a time when humanity was heading at breakneck speed toward ecological disaster. Those who used this drug saw the truth, if only briefly, and it sparked a movement during the 1960s for new environmental laws that forced industry to stop dumping toxic waste freely into lakes, streams, the ground and the air. It created government environmental protection agencies that served for a few years as watchdogs over this problem.


What was done then was not enough. The Hippies of the 60s grew older, the LSD was taken away from them, and humanity settled back into its old lethargic state. While the Bush Administration remained in power many of those great environmental laws were stripped of their teeth, the environmental protection Agency was left understaffed and ineffective, and the world rushed once again toward a doomsday scenario.


What is worse, few are awake enough these days to even realize the dilemma they are in.


Dr. Sessa should not be alone in his call for reinstatement of LSD. There should be a thousand Timothy Leary’s out there, all supporting Sessa. Every man, woman and child should be forced to consume a dose of LSD and take a look at the real world. For them now, it would not be a “recreational trip,” but a true vision of horror. For they would see a dying Mother Earth and they would see their own demise on the horizon.


World leaders especially need to look, and see. And maybe….just maybe….they might collectively agree to do something about our dilemma. As it stands today, few people want to admit that an environmental crisis even exists.