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Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy

Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index


The Chemical Religion: The Truth About Drugs and Teens.

Turkel, Peter. (1969).
Glen Rock, NJ: Paulist Press Deus Books.


ISBN: none

Description: hardcover, vi + 118 pages.

Contents: introduction, 12 unnumbered chapters.

Excerpt(s): It is a national disgrace that in this day and age an ever growing number of promising lives are being shattered in head-on collisions with chemicals. And as more and more young people seek to disentangle themselves from the wreckage of their youth, their pitiful pleas But I didn't know and I didn't think are being heard with increasing frequency.

Read! Think! Decide for yourself!
Here are the facts. (page 2)

Leary's cultists draw inspiration from all religions and attempt to expand it chemically. However, his critics charge he is given undue respect as a man of the cloth. Catholic, Protestant and Jewish leaders almost universally damn the claims of the high priest of acidheads.

Rev. Anthony Bosko, vice-chancellor of the Pittsburgh Catholic diocese, states flatly: I don't believe in religious aphrodisiacs. If I am to love God, I must love him with my whole conscious heart.

According to Dr. Robert Bruce Pierce of the First Methodist Church in Chicago, Leary's religion is no different than erotic rites where ancient men built religion around emotional and sensual experiences that were largely sexual.

The Rev. Henry V. Malcolm, Presbyterian minister at Columbia University, New York, thinks that it is reasonably accurate to characterize Leary's faith as a religion inasmuch as the person on a trip is recapturing his history in the same way religion does with symbolism, like communion a primitive act of cannibalism. He adds, however, that LSD is simply another form of esthetization, not an answer, to the problems of social change.

Rabbi Joseph S. Shubow of Temple B'nai Moshe, Boston, bluntly asserts: This is a satanic, terrifying and tormenting temptation to man to look into worlds that may destroy his own world.

David Graubart of Chicago, the presiding rabbi of the ecclesiastical court of the Chicago Rabbinical Assembly, comments: We feel that the hallucinatory approach is non-intellectual and non- mystical.

Chicago theologian Martin E. Marty refuses to put down the thousands of hippies who follow the teachings of Leary and others as creative misfits. He sees them as spiritually motivated crusaders striking out at society's lack of a soul.

The hippies' Christian message of love for all, a message characterized by their irreverence for the established norms of society, went out from the East Village in New York and San Francisco's Haight- Ashbury district to campuses and school grounds across the country. (pages 20-21)

The price of a marijuana ciragette varies with the distance from the source of supply. In California, the land of plentiful pot, puggy "joints" can be purchased for as little as 25 cents each, while New Yorkers have to pay five dollars for three anemic "sticks." Those who can raise the price chip in as much as $200 for pound lots. The price rises and falls depending not only on the crop, quality and distance but also on police pressure. (page 79)

A Final Warning
Peyote, mescaline, psilocybin, DMT and STP are but a few of the dozens of hallucogenic drugs available in this country. LSD, marijuana and glue get top billing in the psychedelic world, but an industrious person who is eager to twist his mind out of whack can find just the tidbit to do the trick.

A dabbler in mind-warping drugs is begging for the life of a vegetable. Many find it. Visit them in psychiatric wards. You'll never be tempted again. (page 118)



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