August 27, 2015 at 3:06 pm #44665
Hi everyone, I am new to the forum and thankful to be here. Thank you in advance for your thoughts and perspectives. I have specific questions, but appreciate any advice.
I am [theoretically] interested in the effects of psychedelics (in particular, Psilocybin Cubensis, Cannabis, DMT, and LSD) on a practitioner at the start of his journey back towards the Dao, following the HealingDao path.
For the purpose of this discussion, let us assume that the recipient of this advice is:
-in a country and time where these are legal
-is responsible and understands how to use a tool rather than let it use him
-is interested not in merely reveling in sensory experiences but in true long-term growth
-is currently at the level of Inner Smile, Fundamentals 1/2, and Primordial Qigong
1) Could psychedelics be of any use in walking this path?
a) Could they foreshadow true understanding/insight?
b) Could they help jumpstart the process of enlightenment or even act as an adjunct “practice”?
c) Are they dangerous to the energy body?
-How would one know if damage is done?
-Do they burn up Jing? How much?
2) If so, how would they be used to greatest benefit?
a) How often and how far would be beneficial to “travel”?
b) Is some sort of protection needed apart from the obvious?
c) Should qigong be done while “tripping”? Is this dangerous?
d) Are higher level practitioners better equipped to use psychedelics?
3) By what mechanism, in Daoist terms, do psychedelics work?
-Are they burning Jing to make Shen? If so, how much?
4) Do they play a part in the history of Daoism?
5) What are psychedelic states of consciousness like compared with that of high level Daoist practitioners?
Love and chi,
Little OneAugust 27, 2015 at 9:10 pm #44666
psychedelics can amplify path to both…
souls don’t fight so much, all life battles
amp up the twisting and you might flip out…
while figuring out bothAugust 28, 2015 at 12:03 am #44668
Happened upon this video the other day https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQ862T1VLK4 (link copied below) in which Mr Chia gives his view. Not compulsory to agree – that is his view; others say jing essence is restored through cultivation, good food, and over time. The whole topic has been under examination since the 1960s in the West. In the end I think (IMO) substances are pretty useless (worse if done to excess)and you are better off going with cultivation of jing-chi-shen as taught here. The problem is a false fire “up” leads to a roller coaster of up and down and you need a powerful centre to deal with life on all levels. Even the inner smile needs to be evolved into a slightly positive observing. The power to deal with ones own karmic patterns and handle others in society is essential, and substances generally make you weaker. I agree with commentary on Fusion practice that too much external chi cultivation without refinement can stir up power and amplify negative emotions, so you do need to meditate as well. MW emphasises the need to learn and practice the orbit and basic practices. Flushing energy through the body and meridians and bringing up earth energy for protection daily is so helpful. Most euphoric and safe drug is chi of life. The search for orgasm in all experience without getting stuck …a good trip. Seems to me a lot of high level practice is working up and down the core composting false and birthing new, fresh. The Way of the composter….August 28, 2015 at 12:10 pm #44670
“Most euphoric and safe drug is chi of life.”
I agree … go for it … 🙂 🙂 🙂August 29, 2015 at 4:31 pm #44672
Hi Little One, there is a lot of information out there on the use of mind altering substances as catalysts for healing (though not necessarily in the Daoist context). If you haven’t yet, I might recommend exploring of the work of Stan Grof. There has also been a lot published on the subject of the ayahuasca shamanism of South America, to mention just a couple of examples. Both represent large bodies of experience with the use of hallucinogens for healing and inner growth.
elephantAugust 30, 2015 at 9:31 pm #44674
I agree with russeln’s post.
Drug-induced experiences of enhanced awareness are themselves unlikely to stick (in any long-term sense), because there isn’t sufficient grounding in the body. It’s like when you wake from a dream, you have a memory that deteriorates and fades with time. As with a dream (for the most part) . . . in a very short time it is as if you had never had it. So what do you do? Do it again? In the end, it mostly just wears out your body and you don’t have much to hold onto anyway. What’s worse is that the drugs tend to be ungrounding and destabilizing, so they make emotions more erratic and make life feel more difficult to deal with. So, in that sense, it is a step backward. After all, if a person can’t manage their everyday life, their emotions, their interactions with others, have a strong degree of mindfulness, how could there be space for growth of higher awareness? This doesn’t even address the fact that they harm and weaken the lifeforce of the body, as discussed by M. Chia, e.g. in the video that russeln posted.
The only redeeming factor that I can see is if a person chooses to do something once/twice because they feel they need convincing that there is “something more” . . . that there is some higher level awareness. Then once they return from their trip, they feel motivated and inspired to do a serious undertaking of spiritual development. I.E. the damage done in those one/two instances is outweighed by the spiritual repair and devotion that comes as a result. Then it is definitely worth it, because the person is now forever changed with new motivation and goals.
In some of the stories of Daoist immortals or devotees, the typical story is about how they took a psychedelic (usually a mushroom) and the trip inspired them to take a radically new direction in their life of cultivation . . . however, even in those cases, it was never an on-going practice.
So, excepting these one-time affair “motivators”, I think the rest is mostly negative for reasons mentioned previously. Moreover, if a person is already committed to spiritual development, I even question the value of a one-time use. In total, if a person is serious about getting to a high level, drug use is something I dis-advise.
SSeptember 9, 2015 at 10:00 pm #44676
Thanks for your thoughts, ribosome777.
It helps me realize that what I seek is a middle way.
– – – – – – – – – – –
Peace and loveSeptember 9, 2015 at 10:04 pm #44678
Thank you for your thoughts and for the link – what a treasure to hear an experienced Daoist’s thoughts on the matter (to me, at least!).
So far, my opinion mostly aligns with what you’re saying here.
It’s helpful for me to here the same thoughts from someone further down the road.
– – – – – – – – – – –
Peace and loveSeptember 9, 2015 at 10:05 pm #44680
I’m going for it 🙂
– – – – – – – – – – –
Peace and loveSeptember 9, 2015 at 10:11 pm #44682
Thank you for the reference – I have not yet come across him (somehow!)
Looks like important work; I will start going through it.
In my experience, I have seen very positive introspective work come from the use of psychedelics. I suppose, as with all things, their use and value should be defined relative to other tools. If we did not have methods like those used here, perhaps they would be “great”. But compared with the grounded, sustainable methods here they pale. I am incredibly thankful for all the tools we have at our disposal. What a blessing to live here and now!
– – – – – – – – – – –
Peace and loveSeptember 9, 2015 at 10:20 pm #44684
Thank you Steven.
This makes perfect sense to me and my experience confirms it.
– – – – – – – – – – –
Peace and loveSeptember 18, 2015 at 7:05 am #44686
…another source of income was the practice of green mail. Aum would threaten to establish a cult compound in a city and, if the city fathers did not bribe them to go away, the cult would set up shop. Several cities paid rather than have Aum establish operations there. The cult manufactured illegal drugs and had a marketing agreement with the Japanese Mafia (the Yakuza). In 1996, the Yakuza would be found responsible for the assassination of the cult’s lead scientist, Dr. Hideo Murai, in the days following the Tokyo subway attack. Concerned at his frequent televised appearances, the Yakuza silenced him for fear that he would betray the linkage between the two shadowy groups. Extortion, theft, and murder were also part of the cult’s fund-raising activities. Among the cult leaders, “Doomsday guru” Shoko Ashahara is the undisputed head…
A controlled substance is generally a drug or chemical whose manufacture, possession, or use is regulated by a government, such as illicitly used drugs or prescription medications that are designated a Controlled Drug.
Most of the letters date back to 1953 and chronicle Burroughs’ visit to the Amazon rainforest in search of yagé (ayahuasca), a plant with near-mythical hallucinogenic and some say telepathic qualities. Along the way, Burroughs and Ginsberg share other stories and anecdotes, including some concepts Burroughs would later use in novels such as Naked Lunch. The book ends with further correspondence written in 1960 detailing Ginsberg’s experiments with yagé.
Sorry for my broken English.
I have impression that, although this is something quite interesting to investigate, without real yogic discipline and advanced practices one simply falls into self-indulgence.
Also tradition in this respect is more developed in Indian direction.
My simple opinion is that public Taoists shouldn’t have anything to do with controlled substances collectively.
Ps. It’s pity that, in the end, Burroughs (though dominantly opiate guy) was such a quite miserable author that one really cannot use his books for studying English.September 27, 2015 at 5:16 am #44688
Aconitum (/ˌækəˈnaɪtəm/), also known as aconite, monkshood, wolf’s bane, leopard’s bane, mousebane, women’s bane, devil’s helmet, Queen of all Poisons, or blue rocket, is a genus of over 250 species of flowering plants belonging to the family Ranunculaceae. These herbaceous perennial plants are chiefly native to the mountainous parts of the northern hemisphere, growing in the moisture-retentive but well-draining soils of mountain meadows. Most species are extremely poisonous and must be dealt with carefully. The name comes from the Greek ἀκόνιτον, which may derive from the Greek akon for dart or javelin, the tips of which were poisoned with the substance, or from akonae, because of the rocky ground on which the plant was thought to grow. The name may reflect that toxins extracted from the plant were historically used to kill wolves, hence the name wolf’s bane. In Metamorphoses, Ovid tells how the herb comes from the slavering mouth of Cerberus, the three-headed dog that guarded the gates of Hell. As the veterinary historian John Blaisdell has noted, symptoms of aconite poisoning in humans bear some passing similarity to those of rabies: frothy saliva, impaired vision, vertigo, and finally a coma. Thus, it is possible that some ancient Greeks would have believed that this poison, mythically born of Cerberus’s lips, was literally the same as that to be found inside the mouth of a rabid dog.
Aconitum ferox also known as Aconitum virorum is a species of monkshood, in the family Ranunculaceae. It is also known as the Indian Aconite. Abundant at Sandakphu, which is the highest point of the Darjeeling Hills in the Indian State of West Bengal…Aconitum ferox is considered the most poisonous plant in the world.
Aghoris always worship Shiva, who loves intoxicants. So Aghoris take all sorts of intoxicants. It is part of the sadhana. I used to keep a cobra and let him bite me on the tongue every hour, just for that peculiar thrill. To feed him I had to to put a small hole in an egg and then forcibly pour the contents down his throat. The idea that cobras drink milk is ridiculous. I had several cobras, including one albino who had three lines on his hood: the symbol of Shiva. I kept a king cobra also. Its poison is much deadlier than that of other cobras because its diet is nothing but other cobras. I used to keep white arsenic also, and lick one of the crystals every hour or two. For my marihuana and I had special chillum made from a particular type of clay into which I had mixed arsenic, aconite, Datura seeds, opium, and whatnot. Beautiful! I used to drink twenty-four hours a day sometimes, and go through cases and cases of Scotch. I drank it neat, straight from the bottle. But after a while I began to think “What is the use?” I have stopped most of my intoxicants, though I sometimes still drink alcohol or use bhang.
-ROBERT E. SVOBODA, Aghora at the left Hand of God
Sorry, but I hope that I’m not too repetitive.
So if one is interested about yoga and intoxicants, it’s worth to study those three Aghora books by Robert E. Svoboda, in my opinion.
All three are first class books, taken into account, situation in these given conditions.
The first one can be read as simple entertainment, although it can be understood also in much more deeper way.
But already the second one demands quite much background information and yoga mastery in my opinion.
For the third one one must be really interested about the Indian way.
To learn practically asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha, swara yoga, tattwa shuddhi, prana vidya, nyasa, kriya yoga etc. one must look for other resources.
Sorry for my broken English.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.