V.21 No.4 | 1/26/2012
Dr. Rick Strassman

Talking Points

Made of Bright Light

Scientist reflects on his psychedelic research

Over the course of five years in the early ’90s, Dr. Rick Strassman dosed 400 volunteers with DMT at the University of New Mexico. He spoke with us about his study, the Old Testament and alien abduction, among other things.
V.21 No.3 |


DMT researcher in person tonight at the Guild

In the issue that begins hitting stands today, I interview Dr. Rick Strassman, who dosed volunteers with DMT, a powerful psychedelic, at UNM in the early '90s.

Tonight, there will be two showings (6 p.m. and 8 p.m.) of a documentary called The Spirit Molecule about his five-year study. Strassman will be on hand at the Guild Cinema to talk about his work and answer questions after each screening.

The article will be available online at this evening. But until then, here's a preview:

What would another round of experiments look like today?

I don't know about any more DMT studies. I just gave so much DMT. ..

I think it would be interesting to give DMT to scientists who are doing studies with parallel universes and string theory and dark matter and things like that. I do speculate at the end of the book that that could be the location of this other state, this freestanding, apparently independent state. I think it would be interesting to get their opinion on what this seems like to them based on all of their thinking and their computer models.

Do you see therapeutic potential in psychedelics?

Oh yeah, for sure. That's ongoing right now. There's a study out of Hopkins a few years back causing mystical experiences with psilocybin. There was a study a few years ago by UCLA, giving psilocybin to the terminally ill, and it was quite helpful.

There are some alcoholism studies using psilocybin that are either underway or close to being started. There's quite a few studies of ayahuasca being helpful with psychological problems and substance abuse problems.

Did you ever hear from Timothy Leary about any of your work?

Tim was in Santa Fe for a talk in the early 1990s, and I was living in Tijeras at the time. Someone called and asked if I wanted to meet Tim. It was in the middle of the week. I wasn't that interested in meeting him, to tell you the truth. So I passed.

V.21 No.3 | 1/19/2012

Reel World

Dr. Rick Strassman stirred up both controversy and a cult following when he became the first doctor in 20 years to research the effects of psychedelic and hallucinogenic substances on human subjects. His work was carried out at the University of New Mexico’s School of Medicine right here in Albuquerque. Over the course of his project’s five-year life span, he administered approximately 400 doses of DMT to 60 volunteers and recorded their experiences.