Entheogens provide a peaceful way to experience the divine, writes Alexander Beiner, author of the book titled Beyond the Basin. In a recent post published in the UK's The Guardian, Beiner defends how plant-based medicines have changed his life and could potentially aid in shifting cultural conditioning, such as when the mass usage of LSD challenged social norms during the 1960s. The insights and realizations that come from using plant-based medicines do not require dogma, a specific faith, nor organized religion, Beiner writes.  Further, he also makes the comparison that the use of entheogens can be safer and more peaceful than some legally accepted drugs, such as tobacco and alcohol –  although they are more socially acceptable than plant-based medicines.

Beiner points out that improvements have been made over the past 5 years, as the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies in the US conducts research into the use of MDMA, psilocybin and other psychedelics to treat conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder and drug addiction.

According to Beiner, the use of hallucinogenic plants allows him to explore spirituality by participating in sacred ancient traditions. He writes that to limit such freedom towards spiritual peace or to be told by society that such methods are wrong is for him “saddening and frustrating”. Beiner concludes that the right to pursue religious freedom remains "severely limited" until it also extends to accepting the use of plant-based medicines as a way to allow people to explore and experience who they are spiritually.

Image: "Sunsets that are Amazing" by  jdrorer courtesy of Creative Commons on Flickr.