The editorial perch at Lucid News provides a rare opportunity to scan the dynamic terrain of the psychedelic landscape in all of its aspects. It is fascinating and inspiring to see. But anecdotal insights only get you so far. That’s why my colleagues and I decided to undertake a discovery process to learn more about the people at the center of the emerging psychedelic ecosystem. We wanted to hear what motivates them, how they feel about the media coverage of psychedelics, and their thoughts about community in the psychedelic realm.
The results are available in the Lucid News report, “How Participants View the Psychedelic Landscape,” and you can download it here.
First of its kind. This is the first time, to our knowledge, that an analysis of this kind has been undertaken. Other reports to date have focused on narrow slices of the field. Lucid News was conceived to serve the full breadth of the psychedelic movement, informed by an awareness that the mainstreaming of psychedelics will likely unfold in unpredictable ways across many paths. This expanded engagement with psychedelics will not be limited to a medicalization approach, or a decriminalization strategy, or a religious path, or any other narrowly defined route to general acceptance. Rather, it will encompass all of these and more. For that reason, it is important to keep an eye on the full picture.
We conducted in-depth interviews with 25 people who represent a broad spectrum of the psychedelic ecosystem. Most are Lucid News readers. They include community organizers, veterans advocates, therapists, investors, lawyers, researchers, psychiatrists, ceremony leaders, and owners of clinics offering psychedelic-assisted therapies. We also hosted an online survey, promoted through our newsletter and website, that received 385 responses.
What’s the word? Here are some highlights: We found that 86% of respondents consider a psychedelic experience among the most significant of their lives. Most also believe that community engagement is vitally important for the optimal embrace of psychedelics. Interestingly, when asked if they thought that psychedelics should be used for purposes that are primarily “spiritual, social, for wellness, or as medicine,” the interview subjects agreed unanimously on “all of the above.” While each person might have a favored approach to psychedelic use, they saw all these options as part of a continuum.
Those of us who have been members of psychedelic communities for many years have noted the recent rapid transformation of this scene. A new psychedelic culture is emerging. It owes much to the legacy of the underground and to traditional indigenous lineages. But these new perspectives also weave the use of these mind-manifesting compounds into a reimagining of mainstream society in ways that psychedelic pioneers like Tim Leary, Allen Ginsberg and Diane di Prima never imagined possible. Our new report gives an insightful glimpse at this new direction.
Trending is a series of news analysis essays by the Lucid News editorial team that appear weekly in our newsletter. To read past newsletters, and to subscribe, click here.