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In his opening speech, Hi Holiness said he only became aware of the relationship between Madhyamaka and quantum physics after he had a conversation with the late Raja Ramanna, an Indian nuclear physicist.
According to Madhyamaka thought, nothing has a fixed or permanent nature. Nagarjuna clarified this by positing two truths – conventional and ultimate truth. He said that it is possible to perceive things as really existing, which is the conventional truth, and at the same time recognizing that they do not have inherent existence, which is the ultimate truth.
The most glaring of this example of this Buddhist thought in physics is the wave-particle duality which states that fermions and bosons can exhibit the characteristics of both wave and particle but cannot be wholly reduced to either.
[W]hat Einstein and the physicists want to point out is that such contradictory thoughts can become complimentary with each other. In the same way, the Dalai Lama emphasized during his talk that people need to use spirituality and quantum physics to combat suffering and ignorance.
If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, Infinite.
There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.
- Aldous Huxley
Her plan is to recruit 20 participants who will be given low doses - either 10, 20, or 50 micrograms - of T&C-25, or a placebo, across four different occasions.
So people have begun experimenting recreationally with microdosing instead - usually taking less than around 20 micrograms of T&C-25 to get the brain-boosting benefits without the high (it's something of a fad in Silicon Valley right now).
Perhaps there is a cosmic consciousness, a quantum continuum of consciousness, which contains all information, and that one need only a brain that can tune in and tap into select channels. Perhaps Mozart possessed a brain such as this.
Five year later, six?, you can go up on a steep hill in Las Vegas and look West, and with the right kind of eyes you can almost see the high-water mark — that place where the wave finally broke and rolled back.
A five-day convention of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), its first in four years. Rather than rock stars, scientists from schools like Johns Hopkins and N.Y.U. were the main attraction, bringing evidence to the medical case for psychedelics like psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms) to assuage end-of-life anxiety, to help deepen meditation practices, to search for the shared underpinnings of spiritual life, and — in a new study — to explore a possible treatment for severe depression.
So exactly why are we witnessing what many are calling a “renaissance” in psychedelic drugs now, when they’ve been around so long?
There are many theories, including that Big Pharma’s solutions to mental illness are not satisfactory to everyone; that the internet is helping to spread knowledge about the power and potential of these drugs; that ayahuasca — the tree-bark tea administered by shamans — has become so popular in certain enclaves in the United States that it’s helping revive interest in other psychedelics; or simply that baby boomers who discovered the wonders of T&C-25 in the ’60s are now facing death, and looking, again, for ways to get in touch with their spirituality.
To learn how mushrooms naturally create psilocybin, the researchers sequenced the genomes of two of the main types of magic mushrooms—that allowed them to isolate the genes that were responsible for producing the enzymes that lead to the creation of psilocybin. Next, they engineered fungi and bacteria samples to confirm their initial findings and to learn of the order in which the synthesis took place. As it turned out, there were four enzymes involved in the process, but after more study, the researchers found that only three of them (PsiD, PsiK, and PsiM) were needed to make the chemical in the lab.
Using this information, the researchers developed a "one pot reaction" recipe for creating psilocybin on demand, utilizing the enzymes they had isolated. They then created samples of psilocybin in their lab—the first team ever to do so.
Their efforts may pave the way for commercial production of psilocybin as a pharmaceutical drug for use in treating brain ailments such as depression or anxiety, or even for smoking cessation.
The company is called COMPASS Pathways and according to Crunchbase, the UK-based business’s seed funding amount is around $5 million. The company announced it is partnering with Worldwide Clinical Trials, a clinical development and pharmaceutical company, to conduct “a major program of late-stage clinical trials for psilocybin therapy for treatment-resistant depression.”
Psilocybin, the psychedelic compound in magic mushrooms, has previously been demonstrated in scientific studies to ease depression. A 2017 study published in Scientific Reports found that magic mushrooms reduced blood flow in the brain’s amygdala, which plays a role in the development of depression, essentially giving it a reboot. Each of the twenty patients that participated in the trial claimed that their mood improved and their stress levels decreased after they dosed with psilocybin. Other research projects have also found psilocybin can help ease addiction and anxiety.
The study—not for the first time—shows how '___' can create “temporary alterations in self-experience” that make it hard for us to distinguish ourselves from others, lead author Katrin Preller, a researcher at the University of Zurich, told Gizmodo via email. This blurring, Preller added, can then hamper our ability to interact socially.
“We showed that alterations in self-experience are not independent from alterations in social cognition,” Preller said.
Preller and her team used the experiment to try to better understand mental disorders like depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia. The same sort of alterations we see with T&C-25 can be found in these disorders, though they manifest in different ways.
“While schizophrenia patients suffer from an incoherent self-experience, depressed patients show an increased self-focus, i.e. ruminating about the own person/personality,” she explained. In both cases, our ability to interact with others in a healthy way can be impaired.
Preller and her team theorized, based on animal research, that a specific version of the neurotransmitter serotonin, called serotonin 2A, plays a major role in how T&C-25 affects the brain.
And in fact, when the volunteers were given both T&C-25 and a drug that blocks serotonin 2A receptors, they performed just as well on the game and had similar brain activity as they did on placebos. That finding in particular highlights the potential applications of drugs that directly interact with and stabilize a person’s level of serotonin 2A, Preller said.