An armchair traveler's guide to all substances psychedelic! Learn about their properties, use, lore, place in history, and their current research and applications as medicine.
Although it’s the most famous and well researched of all psychedelics, LSD is also, in the long view, one of humanity’s newest. Discovered serendipitously by a Swiss chemist in 1938, LSD has since emerged as a countercultural icon, therapeutic medicine, military brainwashing tool, and even a religious sacrament. For many, it defines the term 'psychedelic,' bringing to mind the 1960s heyday where rock bands, artists, writers, and seekers of all stripes became heavily influenced by this new and earth-shattering substance.
Psychedelics are famous for producing intense emotional journeys, but the relatively new phenomenon of 'microdosing' turns that on its head. A microdose is one-twentieth to one-tenth of a normal dose of LSD, or another psychedelic, taken once every few days with the aim of improving mood, creativity, and general well-being. The dose is far too small to send one on a trippy voyage, but just enough to bring a certain “lift” to one’s daily activities. Showing up to work on acid might sound like a terrible idea, but advocates of microdosing claim it actually improves focus and performance. Supposedly, even Albert Hofmann indulged in the occasional LSD microdose, and argued the 'subperceptual' dose was an understudied aspect of psychedelics.
The microdosing trend has exploded in popularity in recent years, especially in the psychedelic hotbed of San Francisco. Silicon Valley techies, writers, artists, and thousands of other people around the world have shared anecdotes about the benefits of microdosing in recent years, but science is just catching up. A new study enrolling more than 1,500 respondents found a number of promising results. Migraine sufferers report their headaches are greatly reduced in intensity and duration. Students report improved grades and better focus, and some women who had experienced painful or emotionally troubling periods report healthy, pain-free cycles. Others indicate improvements in their relationships, a greater sense of openness and gratitude, and reductions in depression. And best of all, because doses are so low, adverse effects are practically unheard of.
|Discovered||German chemist Anton Köllisch at Merck in 1912||Known for more than ten thousand years||Calvin Stevens at Parke Davis Laboratories in Detroit in 1962||Used by indigenous peoples for more than 6,000 years|
|Duration||3 to 5 hours||3 hours when smoked, can last 24 hours or more when eaten||up to 1 hour when insufflated (sniffed) or injected at typical doses||8 to 12 hours|
|Associated with||Raves and electronic dance music, psychotherapy for PTSD||Hindu sadhus, artists, musicians, hippies, Rastafari||Rave and 'clubbing' culture, veterinary and human medicine||Indigenous peoples of Mexico, Aldous Huxley, and the Native American Church|
|Product dimensions||6x0.9x8 inches|
|Shipping weight||1.2 pounds|
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