Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy
Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index
Proceedings of Two Conferences on Parapsychology and Pharmacology.
Parapsychology Foundation. (1961).
New York: Parapsychology Foundation.
Description: hardcover, x + 86 pages.
Contents: Conference on Parapsychology and Psychedelics,
preface, introduction, list of participants, summaries of 15
papers. Conference on Parapsychology and Pharmacology,
introduction, text of resolutions, list of participants,
summaries of 14 papers.
Contributors: Conference on Parapsychology and Psychedelics,
Nov. 15 and 16, 1958: Duncan B. Blewett, Martin Ebon, Eugene
Exman, Eileen J. Garrett, Abram Hoffer, Francis Huxley, S.
David Kahn, Robert W. Laidlaw, Betty H. Nicol, Fraser Nicol,
Karlis Osis, Humphry Osmond, Thomas T. Paterson, Ira
Progoff, Carlton M. Sherwood, John R. Smythies, Cedric W. M.
Wilson, Mrs. Ambrose Worrall. Conference on Parapsychology
and Pharmacology, July 6 - 10, 1959. Alain Assailly, Duncan
B. Blewett, Roberto Cavanna, Martin Ebon, Eileen J. Garrett,
Celia Green, J. L. Halliday, Rosalind Heywood, Abram Hoffer,
Francis Huxley, Leon Katz, Fr. Reginald-Omez, Humphry
Osmond, Karlis Osis, Thomas T. Paterson, Ernst Rothlin,
David Stafford-Clark, Emilio Servadio, J. R. Smythies.
Excerpt(s): The discovery of the psychedelic drugs marks the
greatest advance yet made in the field of psychology. During
the last 150 years there has been a remarkable acceleration
in the rate of advance in the physical sciences and their
attending technology. The psychedelics offer the means of a
parallel advance or, indeed, revolution in social
understanding and human relations.
At present there is a confusion of purpose and of techniques
on the part of the experimenters. Some subjects take the
drug and become ill, some become psychotic, while others
have transcendental reactions. (Duncan B. Blewett,
Investigating the Psychedelic Experience, page 8).
We have heard a good deal of personal testimony during
this meeting, so that we all know that the experience brings
with it a heightening of reality; a higher sense of unity
and a more profound sense of being, a sense of order and of
Thus, ecstatic experiences are achieved, because we
have a sense of belonging to that which is. We have a
feeling of participation, of being a part of the creativity
that is the base of the universe. That experience is in
itself valid. It is not unlike a mystical experience I had
when I was about seventeen years old. that experience was
similar to an experience at the height of taking LSD. (page
Biblical theology, throughout the country, is
suspicious of experience. So whether you have the mystical
experience, noninduced by the drug, or the experience of
spiritual reality induced by the drug, you are open to
suspicion. I made that point first.
The second one is that we should not by any means think
this is something we can discuss openly and willingly. No,
because it will be doing great harm. But isn't it also quite
true that you, Dr. Smythies, will have as much difficulty in
trying to establish, among the orthodox in philosophy, and
physiology that the brain is not the very center of the
mind, as we would have in organized religion to try to
demonstrate that the experience of religion, the
significance of it, is embodied in this experience?
...if there can be a practical exposition of the
spiritual experience which we theoretically know into the
practically felt and understood, we have, it seems to me, a
basis, an empirical basis, on which to go to people who are
[NOTE: Later Mr. Exman had the psychedelic experience a
second time. While he still believes that what is revealed
is of a super-sensible or spiritual nature, he is convinced
that it should not be sought after, either to authenticate
the religious experience or as a means of spiritual growth.]
([The previous bracketed statement appears in brackets in
the original.] Eugene Exman, Individual and Group
Experiences, pages 12-13)
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Compilation copyright © 1995 2001 CSP