• hypericin
    513
    Do drugs, or can drugs, engender a frame of mind which is conducive to insight, or even enlightenment?

    I feel they can.

    And yet, I am unable to point to any great insight I was able to achieve by drugs. When I bother to write them down (it often feels beside the point to record them, as they occur), they appear either confused or banal.

    And yet, to an uncomprehending mind, mustn't insight appear either incomprehensible or jejune? What is the alternative?

    Wouldn't it be an error to ascribe privileged status to the sober state of mind? Aren't both the sober and high states, both simply states, and so coequal? And so why should I privilege my sober evaluation of my high thoughts?
  • Manuel
    2.6k


    It's a very interesting question. I agree that they can (but it doesn't mean they will) produce insight, but it's not the type of insight that can be expressed rationally. Granted, if one does not wish to pass off as a mystic, then the safest thing to say is that they can show you how powerful the mind is, in a manner which is not as common otherwise.

    I've tried to write down these feelings of elation, the result was the same as you described. But as that old joke goes, based on real life events, a person once had an insight while on laughing gas. When they sobered up and saw what they wrote, it was gibberish.

    Does this mean that the insight did not occur? I don't think so. It's just very hard to convey these things to other people with words. This is why people write novels about love or hate or anything else.

    The issue is that the best way to express ones ideas to another person, is to do so with reasons. And reasons, much more often than not, require sobriety (or at least non-extreme intoxication.)

    The alternative is to write a novel, as I said. But few can be bothered to do that.
  • 180 Proof
    8.7k
    Do drugs, or can drugs, engender a frame of mind which is conducive to insight, or even enlightenment?hypericin
    When you smoke the herb, it reveals you to yourself.
    ~Bob Marley

    I spent several years in the 1980s in a purple haze of [ ... ] Whatever I'd "perceived" in various altered states had not really fascinated me nearly as much as how memories of those "perceptions" assaulted – began to rewire – my ordinary conscious states. I'd become conditioned, I guess, to conceive of 'my self' in different tenses (i.e. a non-unitary past self – present self – future self simultaneously) rather than in the clinically schizoid manner of 'different personalities'. That was/has been quite liberating for me both philosophically and psychologically.180 Proof
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    LSD was very educational.
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    A marvellous question!

    According to some study the Jewish people have a disproportionate number of Nobel laureates. Can this be pinned down to genetics i.e. do Jews have a modified brain chemistry that gives 'em a high even when drinking plain water, forget about what they experience with psychotropics ? :snicker:

    I'm going to convert to Judaism now! Of all the prophets and religion founders, he is the safest bet. Burning bush! :lol: Vide entheogens.
  • MAYAEL
    217
    Drugs won't get you to unlightenment any faster then sober will , it will however impress you and surprise you then if your prone to it then you will develop a mental condition called "the Messiah complex" and start thinking that you gained some special kind of information from whatever it is that you just slammed in the bathroom.
  • Bitter Crank
    10.9k
    a frame of mind which is conducive to insighthypericin

    - Recreational drugs, including gin and tonic, may produce a frame of wind which is "conducive to insight" but so might other things.

    - Religious rituals that are part of your personal culture (as opposed to grabbing any old ritual).
    - Great art (drama, film, music...) might lead one to new and significant insights.
    - Falling in love (deeply -- more that a passing infatuation. Nothing wrong with passing infatuations, but... they pass too soon.
    - Great sex? Probably. At the very least, insight into what makes great sex great.
    - Intense positive interaction with other people.
    - Thinking, for sure. Reading and writing help one think.

    Unfortunately, all the things that have produced insights have also produced heaps of straw.

    The world's allowable number of deep insights is fixed. So, if you have never had so much as a feeble lightbulb moment, rejoice and be exceeding glad. Your doltish brain has granted a brighter bulb the opportunity to have one or several insights, for the good of mankind.
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    Drug-free religious experiences are about either producing the effect sans the cause or activating alternative neurochemical pathways in our brains. :snicker:
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    the Messiah complexMAYAEL

    Agent Smith makes a note of that! Danke kind person.

    Grandiose delusions, right?

    Lewis's trilemma: Liar, Lunatic or Lord.
  • dimosthenis9
    728


    I think what drugs do (among with other things of course), is "breaking" or at least loosing the social chains in the mind of humans.
    Like making mind more free,as to think in a total different way and run into higher spiritual level.

    So yes, to some people that could bring huge insight and enlightenment. It is possible. But that doesn't work for everyone of course and even to the ones that works, that doesn't mean it happens to them every time they do drugs.

    But you have to pay a cost for everything in this life. So drugs come with a package that don't offer only that kind of ecstatic moments but negative effects in general other fields of someone's life.
    So don't do drugs. Or well wtf do, if that really works for you. Hahaha.
  • Skalidris
    65
    Wouldn't it be an error to ascribe privileged status to the sober state of mind? Aren't both the sober and high states, both simply states, and so coequal?hypericin

    The human body is used to the sober state, so naturally it functions best in that state. When you're high, it's a drastic change into an environment you're not adapted to, and the chances that you will thrive in that new environment are very low. You grew up sober, your brain developed in that state, produces certain neurotransmitters in certain situations, and drugs disrupt it "randomly", it's like randomly miswiring your neurons. The chances that something productive comes out of it are extremely low... And it's tricky because drugs release certain neurotransmitters that can make you feel like you've made the greatest discovery of the human race...

    Also, given the amount of people who do drugs, if it had a positive effect on the thinking process, we'd probably have a lot of great inventions/discoveries from high people, which is not the case.

    The insights I've heard about (from hallucinogens) are either metaphysical/spiritual (which cannot be proven anyway so we can't judge the accuracy) or people who suddenly find motivation in their life, maybe because it unblocked an emotional blockage or something like that, but then it's not really an insight.
  • Outlander
    1.5k
    a mental condition called "the Messiah complex" and start thinking that you gained some special kind of information from whatever it is that you just slammed in the bathroomMAYAEL

    Some of the greatest inventions were discovered by accident. Ever used a microwave? Messiah or not one of these "mentally ill" feeds you and keeps you alive through his works to this day. While I wouldn't call that any great or even notable accomplishment, that's pretty textbook as far as definitions go.
  • hypericin
    513
    we'd probably have a lot of great inventions/discoveries from high people, which is not the case.Skalidris

    https://maps.org/2004/08/08/nobel-prize-genius-crick-was-high-on-lsd-when-he-discovered-dna/
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    Also, given the amount of people who do drugs, if it had a positive effect on the thinking process, we'd probably have a lot of great inventions/discoveries from high people, which is not the case.Skalidris

    Freud was said to be a regular cocaine user.
  • Skalidris
    65


    That's a rumour that appeared after his death... Even if it's true, we would have discovered the structure of DNA at that time anyway because they already had X-Ray images of DNA, that could be done thanks to Wilkins who also got the nobel prize for it... So really no need for an extraordinary imagination or anything crazy.

    Freud was said to be a regular cocaine user.Jackson

    Okay, well that explains a lot :lol:
  • Bitter Crank
    10.9k
    Freud was said to be a regular cocaine user.Jackson

    In the 1880s some thought it a miracle drug -- something that would give one an extra big bounce in one's step. It was legal to use. Wasn't he addicted to an opioid as well? He had cancer of the jaw for which he had 30 surgeries, suffered from excruciating pain, and from which he died. He smoked a lot of cigars. Would that addicts could all be as productive as Freud!
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    Would that addicts could all be as productive as Freud!Bitter Crank

    Or Churchill.
  • Bitter Crank
    10.9k
    When Churchill stayed at the White House for a long conference with Roosevelt, the staff was given a schedule to provide his preferred drinks from morning to night. I don't know whether he qualified as an alcoholic. I don't care if he was. Some people can be productive and drink. Count me out of that group; 2 beers and I become jolly and sociable. 2 more, a bit sloshed; 2 more and I fall off the bar stool.

    The guys in MAD MEN and everyone on Apple TV's FOR ALL MANKIND drink a lot--beer, of course, but many shots of bourbon, whisky, vodka, etc. They drink a lot without falling off the bar stool. The astronauts also smoked a lot -- how they maintained fitness is beyond me.
  • Hanover
    8.3k
    I think for some, drugs provide enlightenment. For most, just temporary escape. For a select few, devastation. For me, sleep.
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    My times with LSD have been profound.
  • Janus
    12.4k
    The world's allowable number of deep insights is fixed. So, if you have never had so much as a feeble lightbulb moment, rejoice and be exceeding glad. Your doltish brain has granted a brighter bulb the opportunity to have one or several insights, for the good of mankind.Bitter Crank

    :lol: Nice reversal! :cool:
  • Janus
    12.4k
    :up:
    My experience has been the same; LSD, Psilocybin, Mescaline, Cannabis. MDMA; all have yielded insight.

    This may be of interest to those who wish to explore further: http://www.philosopher.eu/psychoactive-philosophy/
  • 180 Proof
    8.7k
    Lewis's trilemma: Liar, Lunatic or Lord.Agent Smith
    Liar.
  • Bitter Crank
    10.9k
    LSD, Psilocybin, Mescaline, Cannabis. MDMA; all have yielded insightJanus

    Philosophical insights are a fine thing, but did the drugs help you get laid as often as and by whomever you wanted? If not, perhaps they provided a satisfactory substitute?
  • MAYAEL
    217
    no they only think that it brings them some form of enlightenment is all it does is impress them kind of like a kid on a roller coaster ride

    and the reason I confidently say this is because you can reach the same knowledge and the same enlightenment without any narcotics

    and the only way to truly "enlighten" (which I hate using that term but oh well I'll use it for now)

    Is to do the work and you are the only one that can do it and it has to be done.
    An example being if somebody walks by your front yard and sees a hand built Tower that's like 100 ft tall in your front yard and it just appeared there overnight and they say wow where did that come from and you say oh I built it myself
    That doesn't speak for if you telling the truth or not, and let's say that you actually believe that you built in in just 1 night and you truly believe that you did

    But in reality you couldn't have and you didn't , well this will become obvious as you won't know anything about 100 ft tall towers having just red a brochure you might be able to pass as pretending to be a person that knows how to build towers because to a person that doesn't know how to build towers they won't be able to tell the difference because your fancy brochure answered all their questions

    however to a tower builder you won't know nearly as much and they know things about towers that brochures don't talk about they know things about towers but you don't know about unless you've built towers yourself and so unfortunately 99% of people don't build towers

    and a lot of people are getting interested in this whole enlightenment thing and they'll ask questions to be supposed overnight Tower builders and they'll get fancy answers that impress them so they all assume that these overnight Tower builders are authentic but to real Tower builders they know it's a sham

    the downside is though is that a real Tower builder can't convey to these regular non-tower building people what is necessary in order to spot authenticity from fake because unfortunately the only way to know is to become a tower builder by building your own tower hence why real Tower builders don't have pamphlets
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    no they only think that it brings them some form of enlightenment is all it does is impress them kind of like a kid on a roller coaster rideMAYAEL

    No. I never had that experience.
  • MAYAEL
    217
    what are saying exactly?
  • MAYAEL
    217
    what do you mean exactly? I was metaphorically comparing something metaphorically. So what if you didn't ever experience my metaphorical experience? that's not really something I would expect anybody to reply with that's like making a big deal out of the tape used to hold the box together that had the present inside it only cats and retarded kids do that, I thought I was here to talk to Honey Badgers
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    what do you mean exactly? I was metaphorically comparing something metaphorically. So what if you didn't ever experience my metaphorical experience? that's not really something I would expect anybody to reply with that's like making a big deal out of the tape used to hold the box together that had the present inside it only cats and retarded kids do that, I thought I was here to talk to Honey BadgersMAYAEL

    ok
  • Janus
    12.4k
    Philosophical insights are a fine thing, but did the drugs help you get laid as often as and by whomever you wanted? If not, perhaps they provided a satisfactory substitute?Bitter Crank

    Perhaps occasionally they did help me get laid, but no they wouldn't satisfy the criteria you laid down there. On the other hand, they do provide a more than satisfactory substitute when the conditions are right (and please don't take the use of 'hand' to be suggesting anything).
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    Liar.180 Proof

    :lol: I envy your confidence despite the fact that you come off as a hard-to-fool skeptic. How do you do it? Tell us your secret (PM me some hints and tips). :up:
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