The Heretic

Long after the 1960s, a researcher into the effects of LSD makes the case for a return to studying it:

“On a Saturday last October, 45 years after dispensing those last legal doses, James Fadiman stood on stage inside the cavernous hall of Judson Memorial Church, a long-time downtown New York incubator of artistic, progressive, and even revolutionary movements. High above him on a window of stained glass, a golden band wrapped Escher-like enigmas around the Four Evangelists. Fadiman appeared far more earthly: wire frames, trim beard, dropped hairline, khakis, running shoes—like a policy wonk at a convention, right down to lanyard and nametag.

“A couple hundred people sat before him in folding chairs and along the side aisles of the hall. He adjusted his head microphone, then scrolled his lecture notes and side-stepped the podium. He felt fortunate to be there for many reasons, he said, including a health scare he’d had a few months back—a rather advanced case of pericarditis. ‘Some of you, I know, have experimented with enough substances so that you’ve “died.” But it’s different when you’re in the ER.’ He chuckled. ‘And you’re not on anything.'”

Author: Tim Doody
Published: Jul 26, 2012
Length: 29 minutes (7,415 words)
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