Thursday, February 29, 2024

Denmark study: magic mushrooms work

SDU/JPost/MSN, 2/29/24); Dhr. Seven, Pat Macpherson, Xochitl (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

Mushrooms in Dharmic religions?
The active compound in mushrooms with psychedelic properties could serve as a therapeutic tool through microdosing, according to a new study from the University of Southern Denmark.

Psilocybin has long been recognized as a classic psychedelic (entheogenic) substance that produces changes in perception, mood, and cognitive processes.
It’s a naturally occurring psychedelic compound produced by more than 200 species of fungi (most of them Psilocybe cubensis from Cuba), collectively called "magic mushrooms."

The Psychedelic Sangha
Interestingly, the substance is itself biologically inactive but is quickly converted by the body to psilocin, which has mind-altering effects similar to those of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), mescaline (peyote cactus), and dimethyltryptamine (DMT).

These mind-blowing effects include visual and mental visions (hallucinations), euphoria, changes in perception, a distorted sense of time, and spiritual or perceived-spiritual experiences.

It can also cause unpleasant reactions, such as nausea (purging) or panic (freaking out).

  • What can be said of Mona Lisa? Depressed, anxious, sad, emotional, unhappy, introverted, lonely, cartoonish, mental, healthy, stressed, mentally disordered, diseased, fearful, moody, psycho, sorrowful, tired, frustrated. If only she had looked down, she might have seen something to pick her up.
Are you a seeker, in search of the real?
In such therapeutic treatment, the patient ingests psilocybin after undergoing therapeutic preparation (mindful of "set and setting") and undergoes a psychedelic experience in a supportive environment with a trained therapist (sitter, minder, guide).

The treatment is performed in a series of therapy sessions.

Foraging and enjoying wild mushrooms? Too dangerous. Don't do it without a human guide and a way to check what the human guide says, like a good book with color photographs. Why? "There are old mushroom pickers, and there are bold mushroom pickers, but there are no old-bold mushroom pickers. What are the signs of a poisonous mushrooms? Mycology is a very broad subject. Get them from the store or buy an inoculated bag to grow them at home.

Experiments are already being conducted with patients at Danish medical centers, including Bispebjerg Hospital and Rigshospitalet.
  • Related video: Demand for therapy involving magic mushrooms growing in Canada (cbc.ca) ready to harvest
  • Using ‘magic mushrooms’ as a mental health treatment; 9 Investigates the risks of this new trend (WFTV Orlando)
  • Psychedelic mushrooms have the potential to help Americans overcome numerous ailments: Ashley Troxell (FOX News)
  • Illinois lawmakers work to decriminalize psychedelic mushrooms (FOX 32 Chicago)
The importance of 'microdosing'
A little dab'll do ya: a miniscule dose works.
The study has just been published in the prestigious science journal Nature – Molecular Psychiatry under the title “Repeated low doses of psilocybin increase resilience to stress, lower compulsive actions, and strengthen cortical connections to the paraventricular thalamic nucleus in rats.”

It was headed by Prof. Mikael Palner and doctoral student Kat Kiilerich from the research unit for clinical physiology and nuclear medicine at the University of Southern Denmark.

Their focus was on repeated low doses of psilocybin that are much lower than the doses typically used in therapeutic settings.

The Silicon Valley likes to push the envelope. 
(This is known as "microdosing," which is a phenomenon popularized by entrepreneurs [who have read Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and are chasing a substance known in the dystopian novel as "soma"] in areas like the Silicon Valley, California).

Microdosing has spread through stories and anecdotes on the Internet as a form of self-medication for various challenges, explained Prof. Palner, a coauthor of the study.

When tested on animals, repeated low doses were tolerated well and did not present signs of reduced pleasure (anhedonia, a symptom of depression when nothing seems fun anymore like it used), anxiety, or altered locomotor activity.

[That means someone is not high yet is benefiting from tiny amounts of the entheogenic substance ingested.]

Would you rather be ill or a misfit seeker?
Notably, repeated low doses of psilocybin increased the rats’ resilience to stress, and [rats in a cage] displayed fewer compulsive behaviors.

The scientists also noted an increase in the number of connections [neuronal branches] to the thalamus region of the brain, which serves as a kind of filter for our decisions and concerns.

The team suggested that the change in connectivity to the thalamus may contribute to our enhanced resilience to stress factors and could explain why so many people report positive effects on their well-being from small doses of psychedelic mushrooms.


Supernatural: Ancient Teachers (G. Hancock)
Through the new study, the researchers have established a valid method that can be utilized for further research into the effects of repeated low doses of psilocybin.

It paves the way for additional research and potentially entirely new approaches to treating various mental disorders.

The increased anxiety and stress in society currently have placed a strong focus on microdosing, leading to a surge in the trade of mushrooms.

Countries such as the USA, Netherlands, Australia, and Canada have either legalized or are in the process of legalizing psilocybin for therapeutic treatment.

This is according to Prof. Palner, who became interested in researching psychedelic substances and psilocybin when he lived in California's Silicon Valley 11 years ago and witnessed the surge of self-improvement practices that garnered significant media attention and prompted more people to experiment with microdosing.

I'm Afraid w/ Danny Elfman (Three Poisons)

Dhr. Seven, Ananda (Dharma Bu Meditation), Wisdom Quarterly; Danny Elfman (lyrics)
At the hub of the Wheel of Rebirth are greed, hatred, and delusion on which its turning hinges.



According to the Buddha, there are Three Poisons, mental defilements that degrade the mind/heart, and serve as the root-motivations for all unskillful karma (unwholesome actions).

What are they? Roughly speaking -- because these are ancient Pali/Sanskrit terms only approximately translatable into English -- they are:
  1. Greed (attraction, passion, craving, desire, liking, or lobha)
  2. Hatred (aversion, fear, revulsion, disliking, or dosa), and
  3. Delusion (wrong view, distortion, perversion, ignorance, or moha).
The common English translation of "greed, hatred, and delusion" of technical Buddhist terms is misleading because it makes it seem as if only the extremes of these motives are unskillful karma.

In fact, at any intensity they lead to disappointment (dukkha, a term that extends from agitation to agony) as soon as they arise. For each term, the meaning spans the entire range of the word
  1. from liking, bias, preference, and passion to greed,
  2. from disliking, annoyance, fearing, and revulsion to hatred,
  3. from not knowing, wrong view, misunderstanding, and distortion to delusion.
The motives (causes and conditions) for all skillful deeds, wholesome or meritorious karma, are the opposites:
  • Nongreed (letting go, sharing, giving, generosity, detaching, non-clinging, or alobha).
  • Nonhatred (friendliness, loving-kindness, compassion, joy in others' joy, or adosa).
  • Nondelusion (wisdom, knowing-and-seeing, right view, undistorted understanding, or amoha).
They make more sense in positive terms, but each word is a category encompassing the entire range of degrees.

Reflect and examine it. When we do something unskillful, unwholesome, or wrong, what is at the root of it? We are making demeritorious karma (that will bear fruit and ripen in unpleasant, unwelcome, unwished for, disappointing, and painful results).

Entering one of the subterranean hells below Los Angeles: 6th Dimension*

They are called "bad" not because a God doesn't like them but because we will not like their karmic results (vipaka and phala) when they finally ripen, which might not be for a long time. (Some deeds are avyākata, indeterminate or neutral).
Ven. Nyanatiloka (L) and Ven. Nyanaponika
What motivates an action and produces karma? One or a combination of these seven motivating our action. The kind of karma produced is based on the motive or intention (cetana) behind the deed.

Karma is like a seed that comes to fruition later. The famous Judeo-Christian expression of this karmic principle is that "We shall reap what we sow." In other words, we will later harvest what we previously planted.

The Three Poisons of the mind/heart are easy to recognize in ourselves if we reflect, except for hate. Of course we like things. This is a carnal world within the Sensual Sphere (Kama-Loka). Pleasure-seeking is the main defilement that got us here and that gets us into trouble while we're here by motivating more greedy, selfish, lustful acts. However, all craving is rooted in ignorance.

Ignorance is the fundamental root of all problems and all suffering. Ignorance gives rise to desire, to craving and clinging to things we imagine are persisting, pleasurable, and real.

The Buddha's teaching on the Three Marks of Existence tells us that they are not any of these three things. All conditioned phenomena (all "things" composed of other things that depend for their existence on constituent elements or factors) are:
  1. hurtling toward destruction,
  2. disappointing and incapable of fulfilling us,
  3. impersonal/empty/without essence.
They are not compacts but compounds, not unconditioned (like nirvana, the sole "unconditioned element"*) but conditioned (like everything else, every element, every fabrication, every formation).
  • *Asankhata: the "unformed, unoriginated, unconditioned" is a name for nirvana, the "further shore," that is beyond the beyond of all becoming (rebirth) and all conditions. See Bhikkhu Bodhi's As It Is for a textual definition of nirvana (called nibbana in Pali), which too often gets confused with "nothingness" or "annihilation" or "eternal life," when it is none of these things.
In the West we are not raised to recognize or admit our hatred. We are reluctant to show anger, instead suppressing and repressing it. This root (dosa) more often finds expression in the socially acceptable form of FEAR. It's still aversion. It's still unskillful karma that leads to unwise actions that yield painful results.

*Danny Elfman's best music was from his first movie, Forbidden Zone

Danny Elfman sings about fear
Elfman still makes music, performs
The genius ginger Danny Elfman, along with brother Dick and The Mystic Knight of the Oingo Boingo (Gong Show winners), recognized how out of control this unwholesome root could get -- odd neuroses, panic attacks, specific phobias, and general anxiety. Peace of mind will always be hard to find when it is defiled.

LYRICS: "I'm Afraid"
@volatilevulture8102 corrected by Wisdom Quarterly
@volatilevulture8102Afraid of the dark/ Afraid of the light/ Don't walk in the park/ Afraid of the night/ Afraid to get stabbed/ Or hit by a car/ Afraid of the streets/ Afraid to go far/ Afraid of the sky/ Don't like to be high/ I don't want to fall/ Afraid I might die/ Afraid of my friends/ Don't like to be seen/ Afraid to be nice/ Afraid to be mean/ Afraid that the wind/ Will knock over trees/ Afraid of my dog, oh/ Afraid of his fleas!

CHORUS: Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Hard to keep/ Hard to keep/ Hard to find/ Hard to find/ Look ahead/ Look ahead/ Look behind/ Look behind/ Looking for/ Looking for/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Can't relax/ Can't relax/ Can't unwind/ Can't unwind/ Deep inside/ Deep inside/ Secret mind/ Secret mind/ Oh, no!

Afraid to be caught/ Afraid to be free/ Afraid to make love/ Afraid of VD/ Afraid that the rain/ Will make me get wet/ Afraid to take drugs/ That make me forget/ Afraid that the air/ Will make me get sick/ Afraid that the girls/ Will cut off my/ OH!

Someone tell me how it happened/ Why my head is so confused/ Can it be my circuits finally blew a fuse?/ Blew a fuse/ Can a human being really change into a humanoid?/ Or is it my imagination/ Paranoid!/ Paranoid/ All I need is peace and quiet/ Maybe just a little time/ Turn the channel, turn the channel!/ Peace of mind/

Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ Hard to keep/ Hard to keep/ Hard to find/ Hard to find/ Look ahead/ Look ahead/ Look behind/ Look behind/ Looking for/ Looking for/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind/ All creation/ All creation/ All mankind/ All mankind/ Looking for/ Looking for/ Peace of mind/ Peace of mind

Afraid of success/ Afraid to grow old/ Afraid that my brain/ Is covered with mold/ Afraid that I might/ Be put on a shelf/ But last but not least, oh!/ Afraid of myself!

This could be The Year of Inner Wisdom

Tami Simon (soundstrue.com); Ashley Wells, Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
.
Diana Winston (MARC UCLA)
What does Sounds True One think I can learn for Inner Wisdom? And who would teach me but me?

Life is unpredictable, but our path to fulfillment doesn’t have to be. Sounds True has worked with some of the leading wisdom teachers of our time to craft a journey of transformational programming to stay centered, listen to our inner voice, and awaken our full potential. Activate this inner wisdom with Sounds True this year.

Meet the Teachers

  • Pema Chödrön, author, American Buddhist nun, teacher
  • Dr. Gabor Maté, MD, author, speaker, addiction medicine specialist, physician
  • Tara Brach American Buddhist meditation teacher, bestselling author
  • Jack Kornfield American Buddhist teacher, Bay Area therapist, author, activist
  • Rev. Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith author and spiritual teacher from The Secret
  • Michael A. Singer bestselling author and spiritual teacher
  • Dr. Peter Levine, Ph.D. bestselling author, developer of Somatic Experiencing®
  • Caroline Myss bestselling author, speaker
  • Lama Rod Owens Black Buddhist Southern Queen
  • Dr. Richard Davidson, Ph.D., neuroscientist, bestselling author
  • Donna Eden energy medicine practitioner, author, teacher [WQ's favorite healer!]
  • Rev. Mpho Tutu van Furth Episcopal priest, artist, author, public speaker
  • Dr. Richard C. Schwartz, Ph.D. author, founder of Internal Family Systems
  • Wim Hof author, Western pranayama (breath control) extreme athlete, global health leader
  • Robert Peng Qigong Master, author, teacher
  • Deb Dana author, Polyvagal Theory expert
  • Sounds True Founder Tami Simon
  • Tami Simon founder and voice of Sounds True
  • Justin Michael Williams artist, author, activist
  • john a. powell author, professor of law and ethnic studies
  • Shiva Rea author, yoga teacher
  • Yung Pueblo bestselling author
  • Eckhart Tolle spiritual teacher, bestselling author of The Power of Now More
What if American Buddhist teacher Shinzen Young had something important to say?

UCLA's Mindful Awareness Research Center

Dir. Diana Winston; Ananda (Dharma Bud Meditation), Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

The historical Buddha on sati
UCLA's Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC) has a mission.

That mission is to foster mindful awareness across the lifespan through education and research to promote well-being and a more compassionate society.

Mindful awareness (mindfulness) is defined as "paying attention to present-moment experiences with openness, curiosity, and a willingness to be with what is."
  • Director Diana Winston, former Buddhist nun
    [Wisdom Quarterly: Emphasis in mindfulness (sati) is on radical acceptance of whatever is in the present moment, rather than leaving, judging, struggling, evaluating, or needing to fix or change it. In doing so, one avoids the habits of clinging to the pleasant, rejecting/fearing the unpleasant, or checking out when anything seems neutral, confusing, or boring. "Be here now." First we learn to stay with the body, then feelings, then mind, and mind objects: These are the Four Foundations of Mindfulness or sati-patthāna.]
Mind-body are interdependent (marc.ucla.edu)
Mindfulness can be trained systematically, and it can be implemented more fully in daily life by people of any age, profession, or background.

MARC offers classes, programs, trainings, and events to the Los Angeles community, UCLA, and to the wider global community through virtual and in-person learning, web resources, and a free app ("UCLA Mindful") with great guided meditations. More

The key to physical health is mental wellness.
CONTACT:

Consuming PORN: drugs, sex trafficking, PTSD

Guest Jane Doe, Host Garrett Jonson, Editorial Director Keri, Consider Before Consuming Podcast, 9/24/22; Seth Auberon, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
TRIGGER WARNING: This interview includes frank and explicit discussions about porn, rape, sex trafficking, and suicidal ideation that may be off-putting to some. Listener discretion is advised.

I was sex trafficked by GirlsDoPorn, Part 1
(Fight the New Drug) Consider Before Consuming is a podcast by Fight the New Drug (ftnd.org). 

"Jane Doe" grew up in Washington state with a loving family, never expecting that she’d be victimized by one of the largest sex trafficking schemes to date in today’s mainstream porn industry.

Twenty-one days after her 22nd birthday, she boarded a flight to San Diego to go do ethical fitness modelling that, unbeknownst to her, would change her life forever.

That day, she would become one of the hundreds of young women who were exploited between 2015 and 2019 by GirlsDoPorn (GDP), a wildly popular “amateur” porn production company that garnered over a billion views, ranking around the 20th-most popular channel on Pornhub, reportedly generating an estimated $17 million dollars in revenue.

Some may have heard about the infamous GDP case in the past few years, but most may not know what exactly happened, let alone the full account of one of the sex trafficking victims/survivors.

In this exclusive interview, yoga teacher "Jane Doe" and her emotional support dog, Cozi, sit down with podcast Host Garrett Jonsson and Fight the New Drug’s Editorial Director Keri to tell the story of how
  • she was raped and sex trafficked by GDP porn producers,
  • what it’s been like to pursue legal action against them with other survivors, and
  • how she’s found healing in her own life since she was exploited.

ABOUT: Consider Before Consuming is brought by Fight the New Drug, a non-religious, non-legislative nonprofit dedicated to educating individuals on the harms of pornography using only science, facts, and first-person accounts. Listen to more episodes of Consider Before Consuming at considerbeforeconsumingpodcast... or wherever podcasts are consumed.

Fight the New Drug is a non-religious and non-legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography by raising awareness on its little-seen harmful effects using only science, facts, and personal accounts. To learn more about how pornography impacts individuals, relationships, and society, visit ftnd.org. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, it relies on Fighters like YOU to help create resources that educate countless individuals around the globe about the harms of pornography.

Help Fight For Love (ftnd.org/donate). This video was made possible by Fighter Club. To help us create more content like this, consider joining Fighter Club at ftnd.org/fc. Join the community 🧠❤️🌎 Instagram: fightthenewdrug, Facebook: fightthenewdrug, Twitter: fightthenewdrug, TikTok: fightthenewdrug.

Metal therapist reacts to SOAD and Slipknot

Taylor Palmby, licensed therapist; Seth Auberon, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


Therapist reacts to System of a Down's "Aerials" and "B.Y.O.B"
(HeartSupport - Talk About Your Mental Health) Jan. 2024: Imagine a therapist who uses metal lyrics to discuss the importance of shifting our perspective and releasing control. Most people think the path to a better life involves controlling every possible aspect of our life.

But the truth is there is so much we will never be able to control. So the best path to a free life is by shifting our perspective to a larger "aerial" overview. This SOAD song calls us to release control and trust that in the big picture everything makes sense.

We are all connected yet many of us live in a state of blissful ignorance until we suddenly realize something isn't right.

Maybe it's politically, maybe it's in our personal life. But once we realize that something isn't right, we have the opportunity to courageously confront that thing to try to enact change.

Taylor reacts to Slipknot's "People=Shit" on Feb. 13, 2024: People often adopt this belief as a way to protect themselves from the pain of loss or disappointment. This belief also prevents us from the power of connection. The song calls us to FIGHT against this belief and take responsibility for creating a better life for ourselves and those around us. #slipknot #coreytaylor #therapist. The sweetest Slipknot song, Vermillion Part 2
——
👉 If you open up about your mental health in the comments using @heartsupport, HeartSupport will write back. If you want direction on your mental health journey, you can go to heartsupport.com/compass to take a self-assessment test and get personalized PDF results. Here are all of HeartSupport's other links:
Download the HeartSupport SOS App from the App Store or Play Store
Donate to HeartSupport at heartsupport.com/donate

Monk Mode vs. 'Sicko Mode' Challenge

Harry Fletcher (indy100.com via MSN, 2/28/24); Tasty Husbands; MaryJane Daniels; Pat Macpherson, Dhr. Seven, Ananda (Dharma Buddhist Meditation), (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly; MindSquire
A Buddhist nun followed in the footsteps of her brother who took the monk mode challenge.
(Tasty Husbands) Cleveland hates pervert Glenn Quagmire for cheating with his wife on Family Guy
.
If he succeeds, I'll become a Buddhist nun.
I tried to spend a week eating healthily, meditating skillfully, reading wisely, and sweating profusely by running 5K [as tapas or "burning off" the bad by austerity] every day, all while ditching television completely, giving up social media scrolling, and turning my back and not touching alcohol at all.

I failed, but that didn’t stop it from changing my life.

Health trends are 10 a penny on TikTok, from the genuinely dangerous Gallon of Water a Day for 30 Days trend to the brutal 75 Hard Challenge and the ever-popular 12-3-20. And guys are more likely to be influenced into giving extreme ones a go more than women, according to a recent study.
If I stare at this rock long enough...something?
I clearly am one of those gullible men. I wanted to throw myself headfirst into a new challenge. I've tried and failed any number of them. (Over lockdown, I stuck to the 100-pushup challenge for a little while).

But after hitting a bit of a slump at the start of the year, I wanted something that would jolt me out of it. I was exercising pretty regularly, but spending too long trapped in YouTube rabbit holes and not reading as much as I’d like. That’s where “monk mode” came in.

Going "monk mode" was far harder than I ever thought (iStock/Indy 100).

It was great living up at the Mt. Baldy Zen Center above LA as a Zen monk before music fame.
.
First Western Buddhist monk was Irish
It’s a pretty far-reaching term one sees bandied across the internet from time to time, and it can encompass any number of different elements.

There are some challenges listed, including ditching caffeine, which I was afraid to do, considering I was only doing monk mode for a week and had absolutely no intention of giving up my addiction to coffee in the long run, so it didn't make sense.

But in essence, monk mode involves dramatically cutting down screen time by placing a ban on drains like social media and TV. 

And it proved to be tough – tougher than I ever imagined it would be. The exercise part was by far the easiest part.

Monks East and West are different. Travel East.
I’m a regular runner anyway, and all it took was upping the level from three 5K runs a week to every day. 

It was a bit of a blessing that I went into monk mode after a relatively heavy weekend, which had involved plenty of Guinness [a type of addictive gluten alcohol the use of which is rampant in Ireland and parts of Europe] during a trip to Twickenham, so the no drinking wasn’t much of a problem either.

The challenge taught me a lot about my habit for procrastinating, though. I don’t think of myself as a social media addict, but I found my thumb unthinkingly heading for the Instagram app – out of boredom more than anything else – and I kept having to stop myself. More

"Sicko Mode" (rap rock metal cover)
(MaryJane Daniel) Here's our favorite rap metal/rock cover of "Sicko Mode"
Trip to America's stupidest city
(MindSquire) Stupidest city in US (Jackson, Mississippi) is full of Americans

Scientist: ‘smoking gun’ COVID-19 intentionally created by researchers in Chinese lab

MSN.com, 2/29/24; Pfc. Sandoval, Seth Auberon (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
Hospitals were incentivized ($) to label everything
they saw (flu cases) as "Covid" to increase profits.
COVID-19 may [likely] have been created in a Chinese lab [Wuhan], a British professor told the United Nations Wednesday (2/28/24), with another expert claiming that evidence of the likelihood has reached “the level of a smoking gun.”

Dr. Richard H. Ebright, a molecular biologist at Rutgers University, was quoted saying in a new Wall Street Journal article that the virus that killed millions around the world may actually have been manmade in China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology.

The plan-demic, Big Pharma's money cow
He cited evidence found in a 2018 document from the lab that talked of making such a virus. “[The document] elevates the evidence provided by the genome sequence from the level of noteworthy to the level of a smoking gun,” Dr. Ebright said in the piece by former New York Times Editor Nicholas Wade.

The papers from the lab cited by Dr. Ebright contained drafts and notes regarding a grant proposal called Project DEFUSE, which sought to test engineering bat coronaviruses in a way that would make them more easily transmissible to humans [which is called "gain of function," as Dr. Fauci has to concede he knew about and funded.]

Pharmaceutical-industrial complex spreads fear
The proposal was ultimately rejected and denied funding by DARPA (the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), but Wade suggested that their work could have been carried out by researchers in Wuhan who had secured Chinese government funding. More