Direction: Reply to this discussion board in 200-250 words
choose a threads that present opportunities to expand the discussion and knowledge related to the topic. In each reply, use at least 2 scholarly references. Keep in mind enthusiastic agreement and respectful disagreement with others in the class is expected.
A hallucinogen is a drug that changes a person’s state of awareness by modifying sensory inputs, loosening cognitive and creative restraints, and providing access to material normally hidden in memory or material of an unconscious nature” (Abadinsky, 2012, p. 98). Feelings of depression, mood swings, and feeling of euphoria accompany hallucinogen usage. They have their own receptors in the central nervous system (Abadinsky).
What intrigues me the most about hallucinogens is how they alter one’s perceptual experience of reality. Just the thought of what this classification of a drug can do to a person is seriously frightening! Visual and auditory hallucinations, detachment with the environment and yourself and distortions in time and perception (SAMHSA, 2015). What makes a person what to experience these effects would be a common question for those of us that don’t use drugs but for those that do; their answers would be intriguing within themselves. Hallucinogens even cause psychotic episodes that may have some serious consequences for the user or others around (Inaba & Cohen, 2014).
There is a very strong connection between hallucinations and spirituality because hallucinogens have been and are used in ceremonials in many different cultures. The stimulant Khat was used in Islamic cultures for long prayers so that they would stay awake and also used by soldiers to prevent hunger and fatigue (Inaba & Cohen, 2014). Since alcohol was frowned upon in Islamic countries, opium was an acceptable substitute for physical and mental pain (Inaba & Cohen). Peyote Cacti and other hallucinatory plants were used in North and South America to communicate with the supernatural (Inaba & Cohen). There are many others to include mushrooms, Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), MDMA (ecstasy), and Phencyclidine (PCP).
Christian spirituality is always a benefit because God is always there to save us in our time of need. The apostle Paul talks about the end times and how Christians are sober and self-disciplined and remembering that there are great things to come. “ So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet” (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, Chapter 11). I believe that God has a way of showing someone struggling with hallucinations that he is not a hallucination but a supreme being who is truly there.