Entoptic images are visual effects which originate within the visual processing system of the observer. The term ‘entoptic’ comes from the Greek for ‘within vision’, indicating that the images come from anywhere within the optic system, between the eye itself and the neural cortex where signals from the optic nerve are interpreted. Since it originates within the visual system, entoptic imagery can only be seen by the observer.
The growing body of evidence (albeit circumstantial) that points to what I feel is the most profound aspect of how science itself is revealing an inescapable fact: Mystical experiences, whether naturally or chemically induced, have tangible effects that reach far beyond temporary chemical reactions acting on our neural pathways through the bombardment or deprivation of normal channels of communication within the brain and central nervous system.
Practically blasphemy to mainstream religions, world governments, and the mainstream population is the idea that psychedelics could have the undeniably and scientifically-measurable effect of inducing religious experiences.
Please enjoy and contribute to this ever-evolving timeline of the development of the spirituality and religions of earth through time and space.
Please enjoy and contribute to this constantly evolving timeline of entheogen and plant medicine use through time and space.
With the rising resurgence of shamanism, often as a curiosity or a way to make money, there seem to be an equally growing number of books flooding the market, making it more and more difficult to find reliable scholarly studies of the topic.
Is there any illegal substance in America that has been subject to more media distortion than Cannabis sativa, the infamous marijuana? With so much information about Cannabis sativa available online as well as in film and television, we must ask, “Do narrative media sources accurately portray the context in which people use Cannabis, the market surrounding its use, and the effects of this herb?” While there are literally hundreds of films that feature casual Cannabis use, to get to the heart of this question I’ve selected two films and a television series with plots centered on the use, manufacturing, and sale of Cannabis sativa in the United States.
Film culture is one of extremes: often, factual accuracy is sacrificed for the sake of comedy, dramatic tension, or artistic license. This is especially evident in areas over which cultural prejudices cast a shadow, such as the use of psychedelics. Over the past ten years, the bulk of news stories relating to psilocybin mushrooms have actually been positive coverage of the alkaloid’s medical and psychiatric potential, yet good news rarely makes an exciting story for a movie.
Chances are, you are already familiar with the concept of Essential Oils. These are concentrated liquids containing the volatile aroma compounds extracted from plants which are usually created through steam distillation or extraction. Essential oils can be very valuable for herbalists or those seeking to experience the essence of a plant medicine. They allow you to feel the powerful healing properties of a plant in a concentrated form.
For every person who believes that the Mayan calendar’s end portends worldwide destruction, there are others who welcome the coming solstice as the beginning of a new age of global consciousness and enlightenment.
Yungdrung Bon, Tibetan Plant Medicine, and the Natural World – An Interview with Geshe Chaphur Rinpoche
The tradition of Yungdrung Bön represents the oldest known form of what we in the West presently think of as Tibetan Buddhism. This ancient, unbroken lineage extends back thousands of years, and may be considered the cultural basis for all present forms of Tibetan Buddhism.
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend the SAND (Science and Non-Duality) conference in San Rafael, California. This yearly gathering aims to bring preeminent scientists and thinkers into direct dialogue with spiritual teachers.