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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


Psycholytic and Psychedelic Therapy Research 1931-1995: A Complete International Bibliography.

Passie, Torsten. (1997).
Hannover, Germany: Laurentius Publishers.


ISBN:3-931614-84-0 paperback
3-931614-83-2 hardcover
Description: Paperback, 102 pages.

Contents: Preface by Hanscarl Leuner, 5 parts: 1. introduction, 2. Organization of the Bibliography, 3. Bibliography, 4. Major Scientific Conferences on the Subject, 5. Major Bibliographic Sources, author index, subject index. Part 3, Bibliography, is divided into General Approach and Basic Research, Psycholytic therapy, and Psychedelic therapy.

Notes: This reference specializes in the therapeutic uses of psychedelics. Readers of this chrestomathy will especially want to check the following entries in the subject index: ayahuasca, conversion experience, cosmology, enlightenment in Zen Buddhism, mystical experiences, peak experience variable, peyote ceremony, religious experiences, spiritual practice, transpersonal experiences, transpersonal psychology, Zen buddhism. Passie lists 687 sources, 9 conferences, and 11 main bibliographic sources. The index includes the drug used, patient and treatment variables, design/type, outcomes, theoretical stance, and other topics. Libraries of universities, medical schools, therapy institutes, government agencies, as well as individual researchers who want study psychedelic therapy or therapists hoping to use these techniques will want copies of this little gem. Congratulations to Passie for compiling this and to Laurentius for publishing it.

Excerpt(s): A physician like myself who has devoted his life to psychotherapy knows of the lamentable limitations of conventional approaches. I was able to actively take part in studying and practicing the fruitful deepening and intensification of a psychotherapy improved by the adjuvant application of psychoactive substances, and I was exceedingly encouraged by having the opportunity to make use of these effective treatments. To nearly ten thousand patients worldwide, many heavily disturbed, psycholytic, esp. psychedelic treatment opened deeply moving experiences and assisted them in freeing themselves from their wrong habits and traumatizations. In spite of this, there has been imminent danger that knowledge of the enormous potentials of such intensified psychotherapy might be forgotten. I do hope the publication at hand is one step to bringing it home to the scientific community.

In my view, the appropriate governmental agencies should take steps to reconsider and adequately restructure legislation which was originally founded on basic misconceptions and has erroneously led to an extremely prohibitive exclusion of hallucinogenic substances from scientific research and medical application. These indiscriminate prohibitions were ineffective in controlling illegal use of this substances and hence, lead to their establishment in a black market. Unfortunately, the prohibitions primarily prevented the development of appropriate utilization of these substances in the treatment of neurotic misery by competent and educated physicians. (Preface, Hanscarl Leuner, page 6)

This bibliography developed from the need to bring attention to the therapeutic application of these substances, which has nearly been forgotten as a result of unfortunate historical circumstances, in terms of their scientific and historical importance. The nearly 700 listed publications clearly demonstrate how actively physicians and psychologists were involved in investigating the therapeutic potential of these substances in the 50s and 60s. Due to their increased use by laymen during the end of the 60s (which developed independently from medical use), a statutory prohibition of these substances was enacted. Since then, their further investigation and medical administration has been subject to drastic restrictions. The number of publications has also dropped drastically. However, since the late 80s, changes have begun to take place which make renewed application of such substances in psychotherapy more likely. For this reason it has become imperative to make the scientific material published up to now available for further research. (page 9)

What seems scientifically appropriate and necessary in the near future are controlled studies using the highest standards of modern research design to explore the efficacy of hallucinogen-assisted psychotherapy without prejudices - as the Swiss chairman Ladewig concluded at the newest scientific conference on the subject in 1993: "... I consider that only a well-controlled approach can promote research. Restrictive administrative obstacles that block clinical research have to be dismantled. ...It is hoped that with a better methodology and standardization and, hopefully, with international cooperation, a protocol on psychotherapeutic / psychopharmacological procedures will allow this work to continue". (page 17)



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