With the recent increase in interest in psychedelics it has become apparent that the best place to start is in science. The history of the psychedelic field is full of scientific research, strong opinions and a good dose of drama. Here are some of the books that explained where things stand and helped us decide.

We’ve also included a couple of books on trauma, because while many people have found healing from trauma in psychedelic-assisted therapy, it’s not for everyone and shouldn’t be ignored or tinkered with.

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The above books on psychedelics are a small sample.


“The Psychedelic Experience” by Timothy Leary, Ralph Metzner

Published by Timothy Leary, Ralph Metzner and Richard Alpert (Ram Dass), this fundamental text serves as a kind of model and guide for many inquiries that expand the mind and consciousness. Based on a unique interpretation of the Tibetan Book of the Dead, the Psychedelic Experience remains an important, highly relevant testimony to the expansion of spiritual consciousness through a combination of Tibetan meditation techniques and psychotropic substances.

“DMT: The Molecule of the Soul” by Rick Strassman

From 1990 to 1995. Dr. Rick Strassman led a U.S. government-funded clinical trial at the University of New Mexico in which he administered DMT, one of the most powerful psychedelics known, psilocybin, to sixty volunteers. His detailed account of these sessions is a highly captivating exploration of the nature of the human mind and the therapeutic potential of psychedelics. DMT, a plant-based chemical found in the Amazonian psychedelic brew, ayahuasca, is also produced by the human brain. In Strassman’s volunteers, he consistently produced near-death and mystical experiences. Many told of convincing encounters with intelligent non-human beings, aliens, angels and spirits. Almost everyone felt that the sessions were some of the most profound experiences of their lives.

“Encyclopedia of Polish psychedelia” by Kamil Sipowicz

This publication is the first such comprehensive study on the use of psychedelics on our soil. The author, Kamil Sipowicz investigates unknown facts, recalls various episodes from the lives of artists and writers, activists. He illustrates all this with multiple colorful quotes and reproductions.

“Food of the Gods” by Terrence McKenna

A study of the symbiotic relationship of humans with plants and chemicals presents information on prehistoric partner communities; the role of spices and spirits in the emergence of dominant societies; and the politics of tobacco, tea, coffee, opium and alcohol.

Why, as a species, are humans so fascinated by altered states of consciousness? Can different states tell us something about our origins and place in nature? In Food of the Gods, ethnobotanist Terence McKenna’s research into man’s ancient relationship with chemicals opens the door to divinity and may be the way to save our troubled world. McKenna provides a revisionist view of the historical role of drugs in the East and West-from the trade in ancient spices, sugar and rum to marijuana, cocaine, synthetics and even television-illustrating the human desire for “food of the gods” and the powerful potential for replacing the abuse of illicit drugs with shamanic understanding, an emphasis on community, respect for nature and increased self-awareness.

“Doors of Perception” by Aldous Huxley

An autobiographical book written by Aldous Huxley. Published in 1954, it discusses his psychedelic experience under the influence of mescaline in May 1953. Huxley recalls the insights he experienced, from “purely aesthetic” to “sacramental vision,” and reflects on their philosophical and psychological implications.

“Real Hallucinations” by Terence McKenna

This mesmerizing, surreal tale of the bizarre adventures of Terence McKenna, his brother Dennis and a small group of their friends is a wild ride of exotic experiments and scientific research. Exploring the Amazon basin in search of mythical shamanic hallucinogens, they encounter a host of unusual characters – including a fungus, a flying saucer, Mantis pirates from outer space, the appearance of James and Nora Joyce in the form of poultry, and translingual matter.

“Psychedelic Ceremonies” by Julian Vayne

A handbook for exploring the use of psychedelic substances in the context of spirituality, self-transformation and magic. This is an essential guide for the psychonaut. The techniques presented here work whether you are a scientist or a shaman; there is no requirement to believe in anything other than the miracle of your own neurochemistry and the value of psychedelic sensation. Higher and higher describes the psychedelic triangle of attitude, setting and substance. It suggests strategies for maintaining and enhancing the psychedelic experience; from games to play when you’re high, to full entheogenic ceremonies. It will help you intelligently explore the territory of both traditional sacred plants and modern magical molecules.

“Psychedelic Renaissance” by Ben Sessa

Can psychedelics do for psychiatry what the microscope did for biology and the telescope did for astronomy? Can they be used to reach depths of the psyche that are usually inaccessible? Psychedelic means: “manifesting mind” Psychedelics were inextricably linked to the hippie counterculture of the 1960s, and more recently to the rave music scene. spiritual experiences.

“Areas of unconsciousness” by Stanislav Grof

A pioneering and revolutionary book that lays the foundation for a radical new psychology based on an elaborate cartography of the human unconscious. Known for his lifelong research on psychedelic drugs, Dr. Grof constructs a comprehensive and helpful framework from a wide range of LSD-induced experiences in patients and subjects. Current research on the brain and ways to expand consciousness gives this groundbreaking book, first published in 1979, new relevance for the light it sheds on many fundamental but hitherto mysterious human capabilities. Grof’s theory of the human psyche goes beyond the personal and opens the way to a better understanding of our inner self.

“How to change your mind” Michael Pollan

A brilliant and courageous investigation into the medical and scientific revolution taking place around psychedelic drugs – and the captivating story of his own life-changing psychedelic experiences

When Michael Pollan began researching how LSD and psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms) are used to provide relief for people suffering from hard-to-treat conditions such as depression, addiction and anxiety, he didn’t set out to write what is undoubtedly his most personal book. However, after discovering how these remarkable substances improve the lives of not only the mentally ill, but also healthy people who face the challenges of everyday life, he decided to explore the landscape of the mind in both the first and third person. . Thus began a singular adventure into various altered states of consciousness, along with delving into both the latest brain science and the thriving underground community of psychedelic therapists. Pollan sifts through the historical record to separate the truth about these mysterious drugs from the myths that have surrounded them since the 1960s, when a handful of psychedelic evangelists inadvertently catalyzed powerful opposition to a then-promising field of research