These days, most people are far more suspicious of plant compounds safely ingested by human beings for tens of thousands of years than they are of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or other powerful, utterly synthetic, mood and mind-altering drugs created in the last decades by a pharmacological industry motivated by profit.
Like a chemical habit, we are hooked on ego. And the psychedelic dissolves that chemical or psychological dependency and replaces it with the facts of the matter: how the individual fits into the life and organization of this planet, the vast amount of time all these things have been in existence and have worked themselves to their present status.
The newly controversial drug ibogaine, the subject of a number of recent press investigations, is reportedly able to stave off withdrawal from alcohol, opioids, and cocaine. The problem is that it comes with an intensely dissociated, hallucination-filled “trip.” The compound is found in multiple plants, including the rainforest shrub Tabernanthe iboga, and has been used in African spiritual ceremonies for centuries. It caught the interest of 19th century French and Belgian explorers, who brought it back to Europe where it was ultimately isolated and synthesized. The CIA studied ibogaine in the 1950s, and soon after it was promoted by American researcher and reformed heroin addict Howard Lotsof for its antiaddictive properties. However, the agent proved too potent to be embraced by and approved of by most medical communities. In the late ’60s, the World Health Assembly deemed ibogaine likely to cause dependence and threaten human health, while the FDA slapped it with a schedule I classification.
The earliest known examples of Iboga use date to 1864, in Gabon
Why is it that in the entire Western world, these substances that have been found to be so interesting by hundreds of cultures for thousands of years, are prohibited? How did these cultures that consider themselves to be enlightened, democratic, and scientific, get to declaring plants illegal? It can seem weird, but there’s clearly something deep and revealing about the nature of these societies.
The ancient Egyptian symbol Wadjet (the Eye of Horus) means god/goddess and bears a striking resemblance to the anatomy of the pineal gland and brainstem. It has been postulated that “near-death experiences” are caused by a massive release of dimethyltriptamine (DMT) from the pineal gland. The French philosopher René Descartes studied the pineal gland extensively and referred to it as “the principal seat of the soul.” (Source)
There’s a war on consciousness in our society, and if we as adults are not allowed to make sovereign decisions about what to experience with our own consciousness while doing no harm to others… we cannot be free in any way.