There is an enormously important science article, posted just yesterday at the New York Times, about the state of contemporary clinical research in the United States on psilocybin (psychedelic mushrooms). The article is here and deserves to be read in full, but here’s a quick taste:
Researchers from around the world are gathering this week in San Jose, Calif., for the largest conference on psychedelic science held in the United States in four decades. They plan to discuss studies of psilocybin and other psychedelics for treating depression in cancer patients, obsessive-compulsive disorder, end-of-life anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction to drugs or alcohol. . . . In interviews, Dr. Martin and other subjects described their egos and bodies vanishing as they felt part of some larger state of consciousness in which their personal worries and insecurities vanished. They found themselves reviewing past relationships with lovers and relatives with a new sense of empathy. “It was a whole personality shift for me,” Dr. Martin said. “I wasn’t any longer attached to my performance and trying to control things. . . .”
A new sense of empathy?
Before President Obama announces his pick to replace Justice Stevens on the Supreme Court, to smooth things along, could somebody please spike with psilocybin Rush Limbaugh’s vitamin water?