Daniel Pinchbeck on Psychedelics at Horizons 2008

Horizons is a annual forum for learning about psychedelics. It is hosted by Judson Memorial Church in New York City. It's goal is to open a fresh dialogue about psychedelics and rethink their role in medicine, culture, history, spirituality and art. The Speakers at Horizon 2008 were Daniel Pinchbeck, Allan Hunt Badiner, Robert Forte, David Nichols, Ph.D., Roland Griffiths, Ph.D., Dimitri Mobengo Mugianis, Dan Merkur, Sasha Shulgin, Ph.D. and Ann Shulgin, Psyche and Delia, Alex and Allyson Grey, Sean Helfritsch & Isaiah Saxon, Rick Doblin, Ph.D. and Bob Wold.

Psychedelics are a unique class of psychoactive drugs that have been used by humans for thousands of years. In the 1950s and early 1960s, academic research with psychedelics yielded important discoveries in psychology and neuroscience. Just a few years later, they entered popular culture across North America, Europe and the world.

Questions about their safety, medical value, history and implications in politics and culture were unfortunately answered with numerous myths spread by both their users and the media. The millennial rave fever brought a similar wave of popularity and hysteria.

Recently, a renaissance in psychedelic research and dialogue has taken shape. Horizons brings together the brightest minds and boldest voices of this movement to share their insights and dreams for the future.

Daniel Pinchbeck is one of the founders of Open City, an art and literary journal. He was a 1999-2000 Fellow of the National Arts Journalism Program at Columbia University and has written for many leading magazines. Author of 2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl (Tarcher/Penguin, 2006) and Breaking Open the Head (Broadway Books, 2002). He is also the Editorial Director for Reality Sandwich.

Daniel Pinchbeck on The Future of Psychedelics

Beyond the potential for psychedelics in medicine and psychotherapy, these substances may have importance as tools for creativity, scientific innovation, and spiritual communion. As psychedelic research develops, we can look at the role of plant teachers and shamanism in tribal cultures for perspectives on what the future of psychedelics might hold for our desacralized postmodern world.

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