My Altered States

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My new book recounts several dozen of my own experiences of drug and non-drug altered states of consciousness from birth to early adulthood. At the conclusion of each chapter, I discuss each episode’s meaning and message applying the lenses of four models—psychoanalysis, psychopharmacology, Zen Buddhism, and medieval Jewish metaphysics. By doing so, I wish to demonstrate the importance of careful unflinching recollection and documentation of both heavenly and hellish altered states in one’s psychological, emotional, and spiritual life. One or more evocative images by Merrilee Challiss convey the unique quality and content of each chapter's altered state.


DMT: The Spirit Molecule

The Psychedelic Handbook

DMT and the Soul of Prophecy

Joseph Levy Escapes Death

Inner Paths to Outer Space

Rick Strassman MD performed the first new human studies with psychedelic drugs in the US in over 20 years.

His research involved the powerful naturally-occurring compound, DMT – N,N-dimethyltryptamine. Led to this substance through his earlier study of the pineal gland as a potential biological locus for spiritual experiences, he administered several hundred doses of DMT to approximately 60 volunteers between 1990 and 1995. He wrote about this research in the popular book, DMT: The Spirit Molecule, which has sold over 100,000 copies, has been translated into 12 languages, and is now available as an audio-book. It also inspired an independent documentary by the same name, picked up by Warner Bros distributing in Fall, 2011. With three distinguished collaborators, he co-authored Inner Paths to Outer Space, which looks more carefully at the common "other worlds" experience that volunteers frequently reported during his research.

Joe Rogan Experience. August 9

My first appearance on Joe’s show, although we’ve known each other since 2005. A 3.5 hour wide-ranging discussion of all things psychedelic.

About Rick

Since 1996, Dr. Strassman has been exploring models for the DMT effect focusing primarily on the Old Testament concept of prophecy. Prophecy is a spiritual experience which takes into account the apparently external, free-standing nature of the DMT "worlds," in which one's sense of self is highly preserved and interactive. The Old Testament concept of prophecy provides an alternative to other models that borrow more heavily from Eastern religious systems, and those of Latin American shamanism. The notion of prophecy also deals directly with ethical and moral concerns, adding a crucial element to our ability to understand and integrate the content of the psychedelic experience. He is developing these ideas in his next book, The Soul of Prophecy, due to appear in 2013.

Dr. Strassman is currently Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. He is also President and co-founder of the Cottonwood Research Foundation, which is dedicated to consciousness research.