One of the troubling things I have seen lately is a rise in the use of drugs and hallucinogenics in spiritual practices. This seems to stem largely from that wing of the spiritual community that seeks a return of all things shamanic and pagan. The issue lies in the fact that younger truth seekers with short attention spans typically seek the shortest distance between desires and titillation. There is no patience in them for decades long disciplines and asceticism that are the hallmarks of more advanced awareness and philosophies.
Teenagers and young adults are especially prone to stick labels to their otherwise powerless lives. They become ‘satanists’, ‘atheists’, ‘pagans’, ‘shamans’, ‘witches’, ‘warlocks’, ‘priests & preistesses’, ‘wiccans’, ‘masters’, ‘lightworkers’ and any other flavor of the month title they can pin on their chests as a sign of graduation from the dreary life that society has placed before them. Since they actually do not possess any wisdom, knowledge or power that is derived from years of intense inward exploration, they resort to ingest hallucinogenics or any other garden variety of drug or plant to give them a sense of earned experiential knowledge. What they really purchased was brain consciousness alteration. Moods with cool light shows and imaginary otherworldly characters.
So let’s get down to the facts. Shamanism, medicine men, witchcraft and Wicca, paganism, and any religious entry level faith is the lobby. There are elevators to the back, but very few ever take them up to the higher levels because those levels require a drive and calling to wake up from the body’s dream. All of the lobby faiths are entry level where answers are external. It does not matter how much you wed your beginner awareness to higher awarenesses – such as East meets West approaches – it is still watered down pabulum. The lobby level beliefs are necessary to walk through in order to get to the elevators in the back. But when you get on the elevator, the lobby stays in the lobby.Some of you might have noticed how uncomfortable it is to have one foot in the lobby and one foot on the rising elevator.
Using drugs and plants to gain ‘heightened’ awareness is simply a lie. It is chemicals acting upon the brain and its perceptions. That means you are experiencing the brain’s reaction to these chemical stimuli. You did not go on any trips when you ingested. Your body was present before, during and after the experience. There are essentially two choices – the drugs and plants that bring you ‘out there’ and the ones that make you mellow and one with everything. There is a reason the word hallucinogen is attached to these drugs…it is a dream within a dream – neither of which is heightened or awakened. They both, as they serve only to change the brain’s perceptions are base awareness. It is not the first time that people who believe that they are not their body use the body for experiences.
These same wannabes of awareness do not see the deterioration of their thinking capacities or willpower over time using these drugs and plants. They do not see the addiction to the chemicals and the experiences, rather than the freedom heightened awareness affords an aspirant. Worst yet, they do not know the absolute danger that they place themselves in by lowering or altering the body’s natural defenses. I have removed over 1000 parasitic entities in my years of service, and one demographic that they really enjoy attaching themselves to is drug users. Drug users have several ready made favorable conditions present – an addicted and therefor distracted body, and a snoozing Self with little to no will. Easy prey. Parasitic entities are not rare – they are very common.
The Native American population here in the states are living in far below poverty levels of existence. There are two groups that managed to rise above the squalor. The first is the tribal government that keeps the monies syphoned from the federal government within their own families and clans for the most part. The second group is the ones that found a lucrative consumer in the mostly Caucasian spiritual community. The Southwestern United States is dotted with ‘reservations’ where these folks are living many miles from industry and jobs. Who can blame them for taking advantage of ignorant spiritual tourists. For $350 and a weekend in some desert retreat you, too, can become a papered shaman or medicine man.
Another introduction for drugs and plants in the spiritual community is of course the hippie movement with the experimentation of LSD and other hallucinogenics. These were dropouts and rebellious youth sticking the middle finger to the social structure of the 1950′s. Because a few of them had an intellect to begin with, and wrote groundbreaking books and gave lectures about the controlled scientific use of these brain chemistry altering substances, there has always been a sort of underground legitimizing of their use. Many of these forefathers of modern spiritual drug use wrote of contact with alien species, actual conversations with the plants themselves, or other just as foolish reporting of the trips they took. The imagination suddenly became a valid awareness guide.
Anyone with any ability of critical thought would notice that these drug induced journeys never produced any legitimate Self Awareness. The information they imparted came from their studies of eastern philosophy, not the drugs. In the end, like with all drug users it became about the next high, and not about progress in their evolving awareness. Where are those pioneering men and women today? Most of them died off, but some still try to marry their drug addiction with Buddhism or Hinduism. Guess you know why all the modern Buddha statues show him smiling and vacuous.
Let’s face it, if you are under 50 years old and spiritual you are likely to in the least smoke a little grass once in a while, or have a glass or two of wine. I am oftentimes surprised at how pervasive drug and alcohol use is in supposedly spiritual people. The thing about waking up is these states of awareness are supposed to free you of needing chemical enhancements to feel good about yourself. Are any of you that are frequent users pleased that you need these spiritual crutches? Do you really after seeing the impact they have had upon you over the years see yourself ever attaining advanced Self Awareness using them? They block legitimate transpersonal experience, not enhance them.
Please think for yourself. Before actually experimenting with any drug see what the affects are in the people that are inviting you to join in with them. If you are succumbing to peer pressure then Self Awareness is likely just going to be words you read but will not ever understand in this lifetime. To be Self Aware takes an enormous amount of Self will and drive and determination…one thing drugs and plants will never be able to give you. Don’t handicap your pace before you ever set the first foot forward on the journey.
~ DC Vision