How To Change Your Mind By Michael Pollan

As in-depth a book about psychedelics can be— diving into the history, cultural impact, medical benefits and legality.

RATING: 4.4/5

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GOODREADS | AMAZON

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

• Our perceptions of the world offer us not a literal transcription of reality but rather a seamless illusion woven from both the data of our senses and the models in our memories. Normal waking consciousness feels perfectly transparent, and yet it is less a window on reality than the product of our imaginations – a kind of controlled hallucination.

• “I hope whatever you’re doing, / you’re stopping now and then / and / not doing it at all.” -James Fadiman

• If you need to be reminded how completely mental habits blind us to experience, just take a trip to an unfamiliar country. Suddenly you wake up!

• The mushroom’s psychoactive compound was first identified, synthesize, and named in the late 1950s by Albert Hoffman, the Swiss chemist who discovered LSD.

• Despite the 1960s trappings, the term “psychedelic,” coined in 1956, is etymologically accurate. Drawn from the Greek, it means simply “mind manifesting.”

• Our task in life consists precisely in a form of letting go of fear and expectations, an attempt to purely give oneself to the impact of the present.

• The mycelium mushroom in a forest do link the trees in it, root to root, not only supplying them with nutrients, but serving as a medium that conveys information about environmental threats and allows trees to selectively send nutrients to other trees in the forest.

• Humans have been using psilocybin mushrooms sacramentally for at least 7000 years.

• A 1957 magazine is the first known reference to “magic mushrooms,” a phrase that, it turns out, was coined not by a stone hippie but by a Life headline writer.

• “You may not get what you want, but you’ll get what you need.” *Referring to a psychedelic trip*

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3 thoughts on “How To Change Your Mind By Michael Pollan

      1. Gosh darn it – I’ve been looking for a machine like that for ages. If you find one, let me know, right? Until then – have a lovely life and all of that,
        Kindness – Robert.

        Like

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