Entheogens and spirituality

I have what some could possiably call weird esoteric philosophical theories. Prehaps maybe not even esoteric, as sometimes, not even people within my group understand why I think the way I do. (But disscussions as such take an awfully long time) At any rate, I was wondering how people around here feel about entheogens. I think that to some extent, and when used to expand the mind (mind you in a safe enviroment, in moderation, etc.) instead of recreational use, could benefit some people. Everyone is different of course, and this sort of thing is not for everyone. I’m not talking anything illegal. But there are still places in the world you can experience entheogens, as well as here in the U.S. Perfect example is Salvia Divinorum. I have very universal beliefs, but I like getting a wide variety of opinions concerning such matters. Of course, nothing will ever take you as far as your own mind will, provided you’re willing to use it. At least in my opinion. Any comments on this subject?

Ever try dextromethorphan (DXM)? Legal pretty much everywhere I know of, and one hell of a mind-bending psychedelic. I ask only because I have a particularly stong interest in the topic of hypermedical usage of DXM, as a quick Google search and finding my websites will reveal. (the “dxm” part of my username here is no coincidence.)

I really must say, that DXM is no more of a “Spiritual” drug, if you will humor me… than crack. It is in fact, not a psychedelic. It is known as a dissociative anesthetic. PCP, Nitrous, and Ketamine are also in the family of dissociative anesthetics. True, it may be legal… however it is subject to alot of speculation. I think that it is possible to have a psychedelic-like experience in the wake of such effects, although I’ve not experienced it first hand. I do however know people who have, and have been around people while they where “tripping”. Interesting stuff indeed. But as a friend of mine once said, and I quote: “Deep but not profound.” Not saying you can’t experience spiritual things with it, but I just can’t see it as such. Maybe in that it represents the “death” side of chaos. (In keeping with the theory that chaos has a “life” and “death” side, and you can experience either depending on the substance you choose to consume. This is called the “kata” and “ana” of chaos. Please forgive any mispelling of those two terms.) At any rate, do be careful. Olney’s lesions are real, and that stuff can and WILL kill you if you fuck up. :eek:

I did not mean to be offensive in any way. Just saying, be careful. There are other things out there that could take you where you want to go. You just might have to long distances to find them… within a legal spectrum. Didn’t mean to sound like an ass. :smack:

Are you asking whether or not spiritual experiences induced by drug use are a good thing? I believe drugs should be legal for anyone who wants to use them, but personally, I prefer to experience reality without any kind of filter, and I believe any kind of drugs–legal, illegal, prescribed, or whatever–are a filter between reality and the self. I wouldn’t trust any spiritual experiences I’ve had on drugs as being indicative of “truth,” because psychedelic-derived “spiritual” hallucinations do not spring from your own psyche or anything exterior but instead arise as a purely physical effect of the chemicals in your body. JMHO, though.

I like your take on things. Indeed, that is very true. I could never say that any hallucination I’ve ever had is remotely close to the truth. However I do think that there are indications during my experiences, that have lead me to explore things after the experience is over. In short, the substance is used only as a mean to experience a different sort of reality, or even (if your willing to entertain such an idea), un-reality. Prehaps that is a bit vauge, but I think that some things clearly have a place as a sacred sacrement. At least in a cleansing sort of way. It really all depends on which substance your using. For example, the use of ibogane to treat herion addiction. (A bit extreme if I must say so, but I wouldn’t discredit it altogether) I think that there are things that can be seen past the minds eye. Although as far as reality goes, I try not to tinker with it, because most people LOSE their minds that way. Also I think that some substances could be vehicles for mind expansion. (i.e. using more of the brain than we are supposed to be able to) But I am unsure of a place they would do such an unbias study. To make it short, I agree with you, your mind is all you need to go anywhere. But I have never been satisfied with what’s right in front of me. I want to know what makes the world go round. Not saying that you can’t do it without drugs, just saying that they are a different type of experience. I don’t believe anything, reality or not, to be true or untrue unless I concieve it for myself.

DXM most definitely is a psychedelic drug:


Of, characterized by, or generating hallucinations, distortions of perception, altered states of awareness, and occasionally states resembling psychosis.

The common definition of the word is that merely it causes hallucinations and occasionally states resembling mental illness. “Profound” is not part of the definition; and I am not sure profundity regarding any drug could be objectively determined. As for experiencing “spritual” things on DXM, I myself have had powerful religious delusions while on DXM. Note when sober I don’t believe in God. :wink: Many others have experienced such with DXM. In fact, with dissociatives (which are a subclass of psychedelics), religious ideation is fairly common.

As for Olney’s lesions, William White, who wrote:


Recently retracted that because of factual errors. Personally, I do suspect that DXM taken at high doses frequently may cause some sort of brain damage. However, there really isn’t much in the way of good evidence supporting this.

As for DXM causing death, note that my websites documents cases where that has happened. :frowning: However, this is this is true of any psychedelic that has been used by many. Bahavioral toxicity deaths (which basically means doing something stupid while high) are quite possible with any psychedelic drug taken without adequate precautions, such as a sober trip sitter.

Another theory of psychedelics holds that your brain itself is the filter which allows only certain aspects of perception to enter your consciousness, and that psychedelics block this filtering function, allowing much more to get in.

I think you misunderstand the nature of drugs. They just modulate activity. If you hold that mind is a product of brain, then it is helpful to realize that brain at the functional level is digital (although the “logic gates” aren’t implemented as simply as electronic ones). Physiological activity, whether catalysed by something placed inside the skull, or by activity triggered by a combination of input via other means (a gorgeous sunset), is just that: physiological activity. The drugs simply happen to be more potent, depending on their binding/functional profile across the brain.

I’ve to be frank. The dichotomy of natural/artificial that I’m seeing here, pays homage to dualism. What psychedelics indicate is that this dichotomy is false, or not exactly true. It’d be inconsistent to dismiss one class of activity as ‘filtered’ whereas others being ‘natural’. Just the historical artifact of Western philosophy.

What does “ethneogen” mean?

That’s en - theo - gen. From the Greek roots meaning ‘in’, ‘God’, and ‘make’. That which makes God in you. A name coined for psychedelics when they are used for spiritual puposes.

Tell me any word, I show you how it come from Greek roots!


I think it’s a neat idea for research; so perhaps you should take as much LSD as is safely short of a lethal dose as you can, regularly, and report back on your findings. Be sure to steer clear of the authorities, of course. When God has grown within you to the point He’s trying to get out, do be sure to keep a detailed log of the experience, along with any audiovisual documentations of the phenomenon are within your means to provide. I’ll certainly peruse your results with great interest.

Entheogen is also often used just as a euphemism for psychedelic. In particular, as you have defined it above, there is really no such thing per se that is an entheogen. And defining “spiritual purposes” is pretty subjective. Personally I think it is better to speak of “entheogenic usage of a certain substance.” And, “entheogen” isn’t necessarily limited to psychedelics. Some South American indigenous peoples have used tobacco in a shamanic context.

I always wondered if you were into DXM. I used to use it fairly often. It eventually ‘lost the magic’, but I’ve done it once or twice since then and had some good experiences. I myself also have a particularly strong interest in the use of DXM as an entheogen, and would love to exchange experience stories with you via email or AIM. My addy and SN are in my profile.

Woah. This is totally not true. Yes, DXM is a dissociative anaesthetic, and much like all of the other drugs in that category it has powerful psychedelic, spiritual and introspective capabilities. (Although I haven’t used PCP, and I did not hit the psychedelic dose line when I experimented with ketamine, I understand both to be deeply psychedelic when used in that manner. Nitrous oxide is most definitely psychedelic. It’s taken me outside of this universe and back and peeled away that which obstructed me from observing the secrets of said universe, showing me realities I could never have perceived otherwise. When I combined it with salvia and marijuana once, I experienced fully the lives of thousands of people; seeing, hearing, and doing everything they saw, heard, and did, through their own eyes, from their birth to their death, in a reincarnation sort of way. It was the most powerful experience I’ve ever had. Also the most terrifying and the most rewarding. Subsequent uses of salvia divinorum have resulted in either no effect or slight to major discomfort regarding my current situation at the time.)

When I used dextromethorphan, it took me to deep psychedelic levels, showing me things I had never seen before and will never see again, and could never have seen in any way other than using the specific doses I did in the sets and settings I did. I’ve been pulled deep within myself and outside of my world and shown realities of the world I could not have comprehended otherwise. It (along with a lot of cannabis) has often helped me with my social anxiety problems (undiagnosed–not saying I necessarily have the disorder, just saying I’ve historically had problems with anxiety related to social situations) by, among other means, showing me exactly what I do or say wrong in any situation and then showing me exactly what’s wrong with it and how I need to fix it. It’s shown me who I am and what I am in relation to the world around me and the friends I surround myself with. It has sent me to the hospital (parents saw me robotripping and freaked–didn’t know I was on drugs, and thankfully never find out, but that was the most terrifying and interesting and amazing hospital trip I’ve ever taken, believe you me) on the Third Plateau on a dose twice as high as I had ever taken before (but not in the dangerous range, although it did elevate my heartrate and blood pressure temporarily in such a way as I would’ve probably been more susceptible to other problems). It’s also helped me kick a really, really bad illegal habit I absolutely, desperately needed to stop but couldn’t otherwise. I won’t say what it is here. Only three of my best friends know what it is, and I can’t share it here. But trust me, it was a big problem and DXM was a major factor in me solving it. Although after a while it lost the magic and robotripping became more negative than it was worth–at that point I stopped using, and I’ve done it a couple times since and had good experiences–I have nothing but respect and reverence for how that drug changed my life.

Yes, DXM has led directly and indirectly to deaths. These are mostly in cases in which users commit grievous errors of judgement, such as using Coricidin Cough & Cold as a delivery mechanism (not quite as grievous as some errors, but that stuff’s not pretty, and if I understand correctly it has caused most of the DXM deaths), or overdosing (this is tough to do–DXM is psychoactive for many at 150 mg or slightly less, and one has to take grams to OD–I’ve known people who have taken 1-3 grams on a regular basis without overdosing, although I’m sure their brains are now different than ours somehow), or taking it without a sitter when too inexperienced with it and then getting overwhelmed and unfortunately doing something stupid. Also, Olney’s lesions are not real, at least as far as empirical study can show us. I’m sure that chronic regular DXM use, especially when taken overboard, can cause long-term brain changes that are probably not desirable. That’s pretty far detached from “holes in your brain”, though (which is as I understand it basically what the Olney’s lesion theory boils down to). I certainly would recommend that those wishing to experience the Dextroverse know their shit, and follow William White’s advice to keep use down to once a week or less for six months, or about once a month for any longer period of time. I personally wouldn’t want to be dexed as often as once a week anymore, although I certainly have used at about that level in the past, and I wouldn’t trade those experiences for the world.

I was really unaware that dissociatives fall into a subclass of psychedelics. Thanks for the insight though. My experience with that is Zero. Prehaps though, this is a better understanding of what I saw. My friend, who uses Salvia, enjoys that kind of stimulation. Maybe this is why she didn’t find it a “profound” experience, is because she is used to a different type of stimuli. I can’t disagree with the fact that it is different for different people. The other girl who was tripping with her, however, I later found out is just as bland intellectually when she is sober. I indeed think that I was just around the wrong person, and my friend, having enjoyed other experiences better, just prefered one over the other. I suppose having not been through that myself, I wouldn’t be able to tell. As rfgdxm said… even tabbaco is used for shamanic purposes. Indeed that was the response I was hoping for. I’m not so sure, as a shaman that is, that DXM would serve my purposes. (Especially not if I wanted to cleanse myself. My friend’s main concern was that she felt unresovled after doing it.) However, after speaking with the second subject, who I later found out is dumb as nails, I became more willing to look into the subject. I appreciate the info. I have to say Loopydude (forgive me if I got your name wrong), that I would NOT ever want to be on the recieving end of the law, which is why I choose legal substances. If LSD (which I’ve heard is amazing) where legal, sure, I’d be all about it. But since it isn’t, I don’t want the problems associated with such things. I wish they would do more reasearch… but even if they do, I feel as if it would be bias. As someone mentioned about sharing experiences… my AIM screenname is DrGonzosAttorney And yea, I love Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Although that kind of usage is something I try to avoid. No disrespect to anyone. Hunter S. Thompson is cool, but he is alot more “hardcore” than I would ever even try to imagen being. Even if it where legal to do such crazy things. Hell of a movie though.

That was right along the lines I was thinking. It is indeed easy to dismiss things simply because they are not natural. Prehaps this is my lack of experience. Then again, most things that aren’t natural are illegal. DXM isn’t suppose to be, but it’s gotten alot of unwanted attention, and I don’t think my body would like such a thing. (I vomit easily off volatile tasting treats, and from what I understand, some forms taste REALLY bad.) Just an opinion there. But the whole “filtered” vs. “natural” is important to me, so that is what I look for, and others who I hang with as well. Indeed this matter needs more speculation on my part, but time will just have to tell. If anyone has solid resources about legal substances one could experiement with, without question by authority, please let me know. Natural is prefered, but at least moderatly “clean” synthetics would be considered. (I’ll have to do alot of research though, as to find out just how “clean” they are)

Salvia divinorum, which the Oaxacan shamans call hojas de María Pastora (the leaves of Mary the Shepherdess), is one very, very strange psychedelic. It really does not resemble any other psychoactive substance. The experiences posted in the vaults of Erowid will attest to that.

OK, at its lowest levels of intensity, I admit it felt to me much like low levels of marijuana, but I think that’s just a superficial resemblance. Just a buzz. When Salvia is at full blast, though, it’s unspeakably bizarre. It takes me to a space that has certain recognizable characteristics including ego annihilation, neural rippling, and extremely vivid though dreamlike time travel to one’s personal and communal past.

I’ve never tried DXM and know nothing about it. But something fetussaid about hir experience with Salvia was familiar to me. That on two or three of one’s early trips you can get highly significant insights, but thereafter it seems to have little further to offer. When I first tried it, I used it almost every day for a couple weeks. (No “robotripping,” please; that sounds downright unappealing.) I approached every use of it with conscious intent and a courteous plea to María, the plant’s intelligence, that she would accept me as a guest in her world. But after a couple weeks of trying it and two or three terrific experiences in expanded consciousness, I found no further incentive to keep up with it. It did, however, help me a great deal in clearing out psychological blockages and freeing up my mind. Its most helpful benefits lasted long after I stopped tripping. I keep thinking I will go back to it, but rarely ever do, maybe once every several months or so. It’s self-limiting that way.

One time as I entered the herb’s space, I brought a request to María that she would teach me her knowledge. I then became aware of two intelligences, a male one standing on my left and a female one standing on my right. The female one laughed at me and said, “You think you can just come here and be part of this? It isn’t that easy!” And that was all I got out of that particular trip. One phenomenon many travelers in inner realms have reported is the Gatekeepers. Other times I have gone through that gateway and plumbed deep within my personal and collective past. It does bring considerable self-knowledge, if you can handle it. Truly, it isn’t that easy.

I’ve used DXM via robitussin and it really is a mind blowing and weird experience, though I doubt if I will ever use it again. But I wanted to ask besides the Olney’s lesions, etc. can’t using such high amounts of robitussin instead of pure DXM cause kidney damage, that was part of the reason I quit doing it because I was frightened it might cause some type of permanent damage.