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Suggestions and Precautions for the Use of Hallucinogenic Drugs

From the book From Chocolate to Morphine: Everything You Need to Know About Mind-Altering Drugs



1. Know your sources. Many fake and adulterated versions of psychedelics are sold on the streets.

2. Do not attempt to pick wild psilocybin mushrooms without knowing what you are doing.

3. Cultivated psilocybin mushrooms vary greatly in potency. Get advice about dose before eating any.

4. Do not take psychedelics unless you are in good physical and psychological shape.

5. If you are trying one of the hallucinogenic drugs for the first time, take it with an experienced companion.

6. Take psychedelics only in comfortable settings on occasions when you have no responsibilities for at least the next twelve hours.

7. Remember that you may feel tired or drained of energy the following day.

8. Do not take psychedelics on a full stomach; you are less likely to feel nausea or other discomfort if your stomach is relatively empty.

9. Do not combine psychedelics with other drugs. However, the interesting effects of psychedelics sometimes wear off while their stimulation continues. If you feel agitated, restless, and unable to sleep at the end of an experience with one of these drugs, it may be appropriate to take a hypnotic dose of a sleeping pill or a minor tranquilizer.

10. Remember that hallucinogenic drugs can affect perception and thinking. Do not drive, operate machinery, or engage in hazardous activities while under their influence.

11. Take psychedelics by mouth. They are more likely to cause bad reactions by other routes of administration.

12. The best experiences with these drugs result from saving them for special occasions and the right circumstances. Taking psychedelics just because they are available is less likely to produce valuable results. Taking them to get yourself out of bad moods may intensify these moods. Taking them frequently and carelessly reduces their potential to show you interesting aspects of yourself and the world around you.

From chapter eight of From Chocolate to Morphine: Everything You Need to Know About Mind-Altering Drugs, by Andrew Weil, M.D. and Winifred Rosen, Houghton Mifflin 1993.

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