Psychedelics made human culture? Watch

coboy
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I have always wondered where did religion, mythology and all spiritual knowledges came from, because it is something beyond logic, something that can only be felt with our irrational part of mind. I've read some books by Aldous Huxley, than was "Storming Heaven", works by Shulgin - PiHKAL and TiHKAL, and articles, not worth mentioning.

What I found is that almost every culture has some kind of source of psychoactive substance, that affected their perception of the world, life and human being. For example, ayahuasca in Amazonia, blue lotus in India that has many references in Hinduism and soma, there is also belief that mainly obscure culture of Eastern Europe were caused by ergot, that parasites on rye. What else? Mushrooms, sacred in different cultures, Mexican peyote was also described as an attribute of shamanism. That all had gone in past and became a part of religion or mythology mainly.

We know almost nothing ̶J̶o̶h̶n̶ ̶S̶n̶o̶w̶ about our mind and where did even perception of good and evil came from, and feeling of goddess, and sense of beauty and harmony, so why not this theory? It's proved that our brain naturally produces a small amount of a psychoactive tryptamine called DMT, so human organism probably need it for some reason. Could it be that the whole "spirituality" goes from this reaction in our brain?

I offer to discuss it as scientific and psychological phenomena and probably advice some literature. Of course, this is all just theoretical share of thoughts and we do not discuss the practical application or call for experiments.
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Harvey Dent
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Eh, I'd say it's a great explanation for religion. I'd only ever be able to dream up the wacky middle-eastern religions if I was absolutely off my face.
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coboy
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(Original post by Harvey Dent)
Eh, I'd say it's a great explanation for religion. I'd only ever be able to dream up the wacky middle-eastern religions if I was absolutely off my face.
I wonder if this also may have affected a different level of social development, like tribal cultures vs developed countries. And the level of atheism since such things are under strict control has only increased! Of course I am now just dragging facts, but..
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cascadingstylez
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It certainly helped Steve Jobs. At some point in life I'd like to try Ayahuasca, DMT and mushrooms. I'd only do them under the supervision of a Shaman though.

Are they reason for religion though? Depends on what religion I guess. I believe religion was created to control populations - at least in Western religions. Eastern religions though, maybe.
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DErasmus
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Sounds silly (to start where is your evidence?). The most likely explanation most of us are familiar with is the association of natural disasters and chance with divine intervention. Divine intervention may not be something we can see but we can all conceive of a being more powerful than ourselves interacting in the worldy events, just as man makes a fire, God makes a fire. The primitive peoples had to personify their objects to understand them, but still explain why humans couldn't do it but these other things could (because they were more powerful).
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coboy
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(Original post by DErasmus)
Sounds silly (to start where is your evidence?). The most likely explanation most of us are familiar with is the association of natural disasters and chance with divine intervention. Divine intervention may not be something we can see but we can all conceive of a being more powerful than ourselves interacting in the worldy events, just as man makes a fire, God makes a fire. The primitive peoples had to personify their objects to understand them, but still explain why humans couldn't do it but these other things could (because they were more powerful).
Let's not talk about evidences =) in this case, I may assume that creation of mind changing chemicals was also divine and they are designed to communicate with something beyond human mind, which as I fully agree with you is quite limited. A lot of people who experienced trip actually started to believe in something they found inside their souls and I think this belief is more deep and mystical than if they just went to church, or mosque, or anything else built by "primitive peoples".
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