Friday, 1 March 2013

Buddhism and Psychedelic Experience

Greetings all!

This post is more so a question than anything else. I have heard various arguments regarding the use of psychedelic drugs in aid of meditation and emptying experience. I have heard the opposite that the use is “cheating” and it is “inauthentic” and not “truly Buddhist practice.” Buddhism as a whole, I believe, tends to lean towards mystical experiences whether with the use of these drugs or not. I will make a case for the general mysticism of all Buddhism in another post but my question is:

Are psychedelics harmful to one’s Buddhist experience of reality or are they a potential aid for a person who wants to “see emptiness” via the form of ‘tripping?’

That’s it! Comment away my friends. 


  1. I'd say that drugs can get one there, but one has to continue to do the work of grounding out and getting used to normal reality afterwards. Hence, while I think one CAN use drugs to get there, I think it "rushes" the development of most folks and causes unnecessary troubles.

    Cool blog.

    1. Where is "there?" Is it here? And thank you :) I'm honored to be a part of this great blog.

  2. Everything chemical that has a mind altering impact uses receptors already in the brain. In a living tradition that relies on personal experience, the use of mind altering chemicals as part of our living tradition doesn't reflect the methodologies of Buddhism and contradicts the teachings of my root teacher. Were the ancient oracles that inhaled sacred fumes to tell the future enlightened? Does the DMT cult have anything new to offer the ideas that predate Buddhism itself? I'm not convinced that psychedelics are the best answer for those who seek to go anywhere, whether it be 'there' or somewhere else. Just because the use of psychedelics are an accepted aspect of some very old spiritual traditions, it doesn't mean that it should be okay for the wanna be psychonauts. The true psychonaut is up for the challenge of cutting through the wilderness using the receptors already in the brain on its own terms.

  3. Psychedelics are a common "entry drug" to Buddhism. At least in my case, a disproportionate amount of the people I call Sangha, had used some kind of psychedelic drug previous to finding the Buddhadharma. Coming from previous psychedelics experiences myself, I could clearly see that there's a lot of imagery, specially on the tantric tibetan Buddhism in which someone with psychedelic experience could relate to. Other than that, I have seen the benefits, on concentration specifically, on stoping doing psychodelics while engaging in Buddhist practice.

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