Should LSD Be Used for Therapy? Study Results Published
Brad Burge, the director of communications and marketing for the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), made the following announcement on March 4th, 2014:
This morning, The New York Times announced today’s publication of the first study of the therapeutic use of LSD in humans in over 40 years. Published online in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, the study is a historic turning point for psychedelic science and medicine, marking the end of four decades of research taboo.
Most of the subjects had terminal cancer, and several died within a year after the trial—but not before having a mental adventure that appeared to have eased the existential gloom of their last days.
“Their anxiety went down and stayed down,” said Dr. Peter Gasser, who conducted the therapy and followed up with his patients a year after the trial concluded.
The new publication marks the latest in a series of baby steps by a loose coalition of researchers and fund-raisers who are working to bring hallucinogens back into the fold of mainstream psychiatry.
“My LSD experience brought back some lost emotions and ability to trust, lots of psychological insights, and a timeless moment when the universe didn’t seem like a trap, but like a revelation of utter beauty,” says Peter, an Austrian subject who participated in the study.
Thanks to your support, we are creating new opportunities in science, medicine, and public culture for the safe and beneficial uses of psychedelics and marijuana. We have a long way to go; it’s worth taking a moment to celebrate.
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MAPS is a nonprofit research and educational organization that develops medical, legal, and cultural contexts for people to benefit from the careful uses of psychedelics and marijuana. Its current research programs include MDMA-assisted psychotherapy and medical marijuana for PTSD, ibogaine and ayahuasca therapy for drug addiction, and LSD-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. MAPS also hosts international conferences and events that bring together researchers and students from all over the world.
Their recent book, Manifesting Minds: A Review of Psychedelics in Science, Medicine, Sex, and Spirituality features essays and interviews with Timothy Leary, Aldous Huxley, Ram Dass, Albert Hofmann, Alexander (Sasha) Shulgin, Daniel Pinchbeck, Tim Robbins, Arne Naess, and electronic musician Simon Posford, as well as groundbreaking research and personal accounts. This anthology is a “best of” collection of articles and essays published by MAPS.