After years in the dark, psychedelics have come out of hiding. Thanks in part to Michael Pollan’s open experiments in the realm, microdosing is the new green juicing. And serious scientific research on psychedelic drugs — much of it begun decades ago — is demonstrating their therapeutic promise in treating depression, anxiety, PTSD, eating disorders, and more. So here, we share our thoughts on the psychedelic renaissance, along with our own experimental journeys into its fascinating midst.

This week on The Living Experiment, we’re talking about psychedelics — the consciousness altering substances, and the extraordinary moment they are having in our culture at this time. 

We explore the reasons that popular interest in psychedelics has risen dramatically in recent years — although certainly not for the first time — and we consider the historical and emerging scientific research that supports their use in a variety of applications. 

We also share our own range of lived experiences with psychedelics and why we have both chosen to dabble with — or avoid — them over the years. 

Finally, we offer some considerations on why and how you might choose to learn more about, experiment with, or take a pass on psychedelics yourself. 

And as always, we leave you with some experiments to help you delve deeper into this fascinating topic, if you choose.

“Psychedelics” Episode Highlights

  • Defining psychedelics as a broad category of perception- and mood-altering substances
  • Acknowledging this as a topic of interest to people who are focused on health, happiness, self improvement, and self discovery, and why we decided to talk about it
  • The wide variety of uses — as cultural or religious practice, as professionally-guided therapy aid, as recreational drug
  • The importance we place on the intention and experience over the chemistry, politics, stereotypes, and any expected outcomes
  • Dallas and Pilar share their experiments with psychedelics
  • Being open to new ways of making ourselves happier and healthier, and of seeing and experiencing our world
  • Reasons you may not want to try psychedelics, and other caveats

Read Michael Pollan’s book, How to Change Your Mind (linked below in Resources). As you read it, what comes up for you? Do you agree with his perceptions? Does it raise any doubts in your mind?

If as you listen to this episode you experience really strong feelings of resistance or judgement, explore that. Ask what the narratives are around these substances and/or people who use them that turn you off, or what it might be about yourself that generates these reactions.


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