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They open you up to the possibility that everything you know is wrong. ~ Terence McKenna

Psychedelics are substances that alter cognition and perception.


  • I ask that you suspend any opinions, either negative or positive, about these compounds. Whatever you believe their value to be, they continue to have profound effects wherever we find their use, whether it's contemporary Western culture or in the Amazon rainforest.
  • Psychedelics are illegal not because a loving government is concerned that you might jump out of a third story window. Psychedelics are illegal because they dissolve opinion structure and culturally laid down models of behavior and information processing. They open you up to the possibility that everything you know is wrong.
  • The last item—the occasional trip into realms labeled madness—can mean, especially if you are a writer, that you are given to telling the unvarnished, brutal, searing truth, whether society likes it or not. And not the Sylvia Plath look-at-me kinds of truth, but the spiritual-seer and mad-shaman types of truth, the truths that really hurt, the truths that get into society's craw and stick there, causing festering metaphysical sores indicative of social cancers or worse—but also the types of truth that speak to you deeply, authentically, radiantly, if you have the courage to listen.
  • If you get the message, hang up the phone. For psychedelic drugs are simply instruments, like microscopes, telescopes, and telephones. The biologist does not sit with his eye permanently glued to the microscope, he goes away and works on what he has seen.
    • Alan Watts: The Joyous Cosmology: Adventures in the Chemistry of Consciousness
  • Designer synthetics are really nasty. There are chemical cannabinoid structures. There are stimulants and hallucinogens. Then you have hallucinogens that act as stimulants, and stimulants that act like hallucinogens, and the list goes on. You have no idea where that pill came from or where that powder came from. You don't know the lab environment in which it was manufactured. You don't know the contents. You don't know what's in it.
  • Hamilton Morris: I had a very traumatic and formative experience myself. My best friend had a psychotic break while I was with him tripping, so I have seen this firsthand. I know exactly what it looks like.

    Joe Rogan: Yeah, I've had friends have really bad experiences too with screaming and yelling and disassociation, and afterwards, become very strange and have a really hard time with reality for a bit. I've never seen someone have a complete psychotic break.

    Hamilton Morris: This was that. He never recovered.

    Joe Rogan: Never?

    Hamilton Morris: He never recovered. He was my best friend at the time, and he never recovered.

    Joe Rogan: So he was fine before the psychedelics?

    Hamilton Morris: Yes.

    Joe Rogan: Jesus Christ. So now, he's still fucked?

    Hamilton Morris: Yes.

    Joe Rogan: Damn.

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