From 1990 to 1995, Dr. Rick Strassman conducted U.S. government–approved and funded clinical research at the University of New Mexico in which he injected 60 volunteers with DMT, one of the most powerful psychedelics known. His detailed account of those sessions is an extraordinarily riveting inquiry into the nature of the human mind and the therapeutic potential of psychedelics. DMT, a plant-derived chemical found in the psychedelic Amazon brew ayahuasca, is also manufactured by the human brain. In Strassman's volunteers, it consistently produced near-death and mystical experiences. Many reported convincing encounters with intelligent nonhuman presences, aliens, angels, and spirits. Nearly all felt that the sessions were among the most profound experiences of their lives. Strassman's research connects DMT with the pineal gland, considered by Hindus to be the site of the seventh chakra and by René Descartes to be the seat of the soul.
DMT: The Spirit Molecule makes the bold case that DMT, naturally released by the pineal gland, facilitates the soul's movement in and out of the body and is an integral part of the birth and death experiences, as well as the highest states of meditation and even sexual transcendence. Strassman also believes that so-called alien abduction experiences are brought on by accidental releases of DMT. If used wisely, DMT could trigger a period of remarkable progress in the scientific exploration of the most mystical regions of the human mind and soul.
©2000 Rick J. Strassman, M.D. (P)2011 Tantor
"Fascinating and provocative. A remarkable exploration of the boundaries of science and consciousness itself." (Rupert Sheldrake, author of The Presence of the Past)
Accounts of the test subjects' experiences are the best part of this book. Listening to this book has made become much more curious about psychedelic experiences.
I recommend this book to anyone I think might read it. Powerful imagery, touching stories, and valuable knowledge of the history of psychedelic drugs are just the beginning.
This book does not compare well to other works of literature. It has the somewhat dry, detailed explanation of procedures from Dr. Strassman himself, while at the same time encompassing a vast array of well worded vision and meaningful storyline.
Arthur Morey is fantastic. I have owned hard copies of this book before, and I absolutely prefer to hear it read by Mr. Morey than to read it myself.
If I were the director of a film based upon the notes contained in this book, the title would assuredly be
Check it out. This book will give you a broader sense of not only drugs, psychology, the brain, religion, society, etc. But will give you a deeper understanding (or questioning) of reality in general, and how we perceive it.
The story of the research done by Rick Strassman and the implications are nothing less than some of the most Humanly relevant ideas that I have ever heard in my life. I recomend this book to anyone that has any interest in religion or neurobiology.
What a great amount of information. Something i had already expected through my own experiences, are now confirmed...
i have seen both a pdf and a hardcopy library version of the book, and i was waiting for the CD's but decided i wanted it NOw so downloaded it...funny i am waiting for James Faddiman on C2CAM in a few hours, and a passage just occurred where Strassman hooks up with Fadiman!
Great book for anyone interested in how medical studies are done and the difficulty that researchers encounter when attempting to conduct studies. The subject matter and the similar reactions the patients have is just icing on the cake and but if you are looking for the final word, you won't find it here, just more questions and hoping that more will come.
For any one interested in the "near-death experience" phenomenon, this book should be read. The author has made an attempt to systematically investigate psychedelic experiences that are mediated by DMT, a substance I personally knew nothing about before reading this book. The account of the difficulty he had getting approval for his studies, and how it affected some of his other involvements, is interesting, as well. Not having a strong neurochemical information background, I found it difficult to evaluate some of the information he presented, but I do think the book is well written and provokes questions and desire for more research on the part of the reader.
I am not aware of many other books that purport to study psychedelic phenomena, at least in current times. This book is certainly more research based than most of the books I have read about altered states of consciousness.
He treated the content with respect and thus supported the overall tone and nature of the book--that is, businesslike, but with appropriate emphasis, even on the personal material.
Not necessarily, but it did hold my interest and there was a definite desire to finish it. HIs organization was logical and also showed a clear progression to the core of the results he found
This is a book that chronicles a more reasoned approach to altered states of consciousness than many of the other literature out there on this subject. He does a good job of labeling his biases when they come into play
50yrs old / audible member for 5 yrs library. 75% nonfiction, 15% classics and 10% fiction. History/Science/biography/Eng.18th cent fiction
Books of this sort are always a risk but this was done with great professionalism and well written as well.
Its a fascinating group of stories, including the lengthy story of how he finally got to do this dicey research in the first place
I'm fascinated by what this recent explosion of research into various psychedelia, (including ayawaska) are finding.
I find it all enormously fascinating .I would bet that this is the Best book of its kind on the subject.. Fine narration and credit worthy.
the highly detailed story
Did not increase it: it answered most of my questions
by giving lots of detail
Yes absolutely, this book deals with a serious human experience and current issue in society. Just what do we experience in the DMT space? This book will dissolve all your wrong notions about psychadelics from government propaganda. And also highlight just how beneficial these things can be. At the very least, how much further study is urgently needed. Even if you don't plan to use any plant drugs, it's worthy information to absorb.
The Cosmic Serpent. Like that book, this book is something of a detective story. It follows the path of a scientist who stumbles onto the DMT trail, and is rightly absorbed and compelled to study it.In both cases we see proof that there really is something here to study, and it should no longer be regarded as taboo, or fringe, but rather a frontier we must advance into.
Though most people point to the obvious section of peoples' experiences, I personally enjoyed the entire journey of the book, including the torturous anticipation of that climax. It was very educational and informative about the barriers both social and bureaucratic that stand in the way of rational study of psychedelic drugs.
Simply an amazing book.
"Open your mind!"
Whilst the first half of this audio was a little technical and dry, the sound basis for the trials and research described become necessary to understand the book.
An outstanding and brave work, which describes and theorises on altered states, and demands the readers open minded thought.
Strange though, that no comparisons to Robert Munroes "Journeys out of the body" were included. Some of the descriptions and conclusions came rather close to it, I felt.
An excellent audio book for the Psychonaut or the curious.
"read this! if you cant read then listen"
it will change your life and perceptions, watch the documentary. and explore your human consciousness in this dimensions and many others =] x
"Scientific and spiritual"
I chose this book based on my interest in reincarnation and out of body experiences, so I found the start of the text frustrating, with its emphasis on scientific methodology related to the experiments. It was certainly interesting and enjoyable to listen to, with a variety of fascinating reports of the experiences of the participants in the DMT study and hypotheses by Strassman about what these experiences could mean. The reflections on a variety of hallucinogenic drugs and narration about the frustrations by the writer with gaining permission to run the study were of less interest to me, but it was worthwhile to find out about these alongside the possible experiences beyond this life and state of being.
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