History of People Eating Psychedelic Mushrooms
The most common use of psychedelic mushrooms in ancient times was for spiritual ceremonies and religious rituals. They would use psychedelics to alter their minds and induce a deep trance-like state in order to communicate with their gods.
The 20th Century
It was in the mid-1950s though that psychedelic mushrooms were first introduced into the modern western world. An American mycologist, R. Gordon Wasson, was studying mushrooms in Mexico and witnessed how a shaman used it in his ceremonies. When he returned home, he published an article about “magic mushrooms” in a magazine, which caught the interest of the public. The psychedelic mushroom’s main compound, psilocybin, was isolated by Swiss chemist Albert Hoffman in 1958. Hoffman is also the scientist who first synthesized LSD.
We’ve talked about heroes of cannabis many times on this blog. If we were to discuss heroes of psychedelics; Hoffman would be front and center. His influence on the world of psychedelics is immeasurable. Taking into account the number of people that have used LSD and/or mushrooms in the 1960s that now play major roles throughout the world; I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say that the world as we know it would not be the same without Hoffman’s influence.
Visionaries like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Francis Crick, Richard Feynman, and Kary Mullis all used LSD. Some have gone as far as to say they are not sure they would have had the same breakthroughs if not for psychedelics.
The Psychedelic 60’s
Like a match made in heaven; a generation of youth looking to expand their minds were soon chasing down the new magic mushrooms they were hearing so much about. Psilocybin mushrooms quickly became one of the popular psychedelic drugs as they did not require any synthesizing in a lab. Mushrooms could be grown at home if you knew what you were doing.
However, as they are prone to do with fun, the US federal government banned the use of psilocybin. Similar to cannabis, it was classified as a Schedule I substance. This made medical research far more difficult.
Magic mushrooms kind of existed in the fringes for a while. You could still find them but it was much more difficult and their popularity had diminished.
However, interest in psychedelic mushrooms was revitalized in the late 1990s. Initially just as a recreational drug, by the mid-2000s, studies were being done on psilocybin’s medical efficacy and showing promising results. These psychedelic mushrooms, according to the studies, had therapeutic and medicinal properties that could benefit those dealing with mental health problems.
Mushrooms as Medicine
In 2013, a University of South Florida study showed that psilocybin has the potential to help patients with post-traumatic stress disorder. It stimulates brain cell healing and growth in the brain region responsible for memory, fear, and emotions. These are the same brain regions affected in PTSD.
Mushrooms For Patients with Terminal Illnesses
As more and more of the general population has learned about these studies and their positive long term results; an ever-growing number of people are introducing magic mushrooms into their therapy.
Either with the help of a professional or on their own after studying all available info, people have begun micro-dosing with mushrooms with a lot of positive results, albeit mostly anecdotal. However, since we are dealing with an illegal substance, we have to take whatever data we can get. And, anecdotal or note, the data is positive.
Before eating magic mushrooms, you have to know that, similar to cannabis, different batches will have varying potency and strengths. Taking a high dose could lead to what is referred to as a “bad trip” and very intense psychedelic effects. These negative side effects are amplified when magic mushrooms are taken with alcohol and other drugs. If you’re not in a good place emotionally or are somewhere physically that you don’t feel at ease, the trip can be very uncomfortable. That’s why setting and surrounding are so key when it comes to taking mushrooms. Mushrooms heighten emotions and can alter your sense of time, reality, color, sounds, and sight. It can help make you feel more creative, happier, and more focused mentally and emotionally. However, in large doses, it can also trigger strong hallucinations, fear, anxiety/ panic attacks, and paranoia. It can also cause confusion, lightheadedness, mood changes, and disorientation.
Before taking psilocybin mushrooms there are some things you need to know:
- While many people are introducing mushrooms into their therapy, this does not mean they are right for everyone. People with psychiatric conditions and heart problems must consult a doctor before trying mushrooms as it could make matters worse if done incorrectly. Someone that has an understanding, as well as experience with mushrooms that can offer assistance if things go poorly is key. They will also know beforehand if mushrooms are the right option for you.
- Many people find eating the actual mushroom makes them nauseous and can result in vomiting. Throwing up sucks but throwing up when you are high is a whole new level of suck. As a result, many people found ways to consume them without feeling sick. Some people recommend taking them with peanut butter or chocolate. Others prefer to turn them into a tea. I met some old school hippies at a nudist beach once who swore by making themselves throw up the mushrooms as soon as they started feeling high. I laughed as I thought they were joking until the guy I was talking with took it upon himself to show me. Never question a tripping hippie. Just, don’t.
- You should never drive high. I know that there is a lot of debate as to whether or not people can drive under the influence of cannabis. I’m not here to lecture you on that. Mushrooms as far more psychedelic though and the high lasts much longer. The onset of effects after eating magic mushrooms can start anywhere between a half to an hour, and it can last for about four to five hours. So don’t consume magic mushrooms if you’re going to drive or operate heavy machinery.
Where to Find Mushrooms
We now carry Golden Teacher mushrooms for $10/G. These mushrooms are sourced from trusted local growers.
We also carry Room 920’s Mushroom Jellies
Perfect for those looking to microdose, these gummies are conveniently divided into 8 squares. Room 920’s gummies allow you to get the most out of the mushroom without any of the nausea.
A quick search online will also give you medicinal mushroom shops that ship psilocybin across Canada. These products usually come in fresh or dried whole mushrooms, as well as in powdered form. Some people also snort the powder, though I can’t imagine hanging out with people doing lines of mushrooms. Just seems…off.
Despite their reputation stemming from the 1960s, magic mushrooms potential to help countless people can no longer be ignored. Whether you had a good or a bad trip with them should have no bearing on their medical efficacy. To dismiss it, is it deny people relief, simply because of your own mental hangups around the substance.