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Psychedelic Renaissance: LSD, Ecstasy and Magic Mushrooms Are Helping People Face Death, Cope with Trauma and Quit Booze and Smokes

Four decades after the counter-culture’s widespread recreational use of hallucinogens led to criminalization, there's new interest in their therapeutic potential.

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The future of psychedelics as a “spiritual medicine” is unpredictable. In the short term, research is likely to limp along. A large-scale, controlled and neurobiologically based study is probably at least a decade away—if it ever happens. As neuroscience revolutionizes the entire field of mental illness and addiction research and treatment, however, hallucinogens may well gain legitimacy as a class of chemicals with unique properties worthy of serious investigation. Until then, modern-day Bill Wilsons struggling with recovery are stuck with the black market.

Kelly Bourdet is a journalist focusing on the culture of science, technology and medicine. Her work has appeared in  Vice, Motherboard,  Buzzfeed's FWD, Nerve, Black Book a nd other publications. She tweets at  @KellyBourdet.

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