Plant medicine and the subconscious

Plants like Cannibis unleash or unhinge the psyche for a time. For that matter, so does alcohol (a derivative of grain), and naturally stronger mind-altering plant derivatives do as well.  When internalized substances of any kind, natural or manufactured, are strong enough, they will have an effect on the psyche.

In altering communications pathways in the body, strong medicines break habits and routines. That ripples out to the psyche to the degree that it creates unexpected novelty in one’s experience. The subconscious is the part of the psyche that integrates novelty into its reality model.

If one is not able to hold routine, structure, or sacred space well enough, strong medicine can overwhelm the psyche. With ungrounded or incomplete integration of plant medicine experiences, the psyche becomes beholden to a reality model informed by its own subconscious, rather than the other way around.  The way it works better is for the subconscious to take its flights of fancy to inform experiences effectively and expansively into a beneficent and far-reaching reality.

Use strong medicine wisely. Don’t get too reliant on meaningfulness arising as a reflection of your subconscious — it can amount to little more than one more way to gain personal control. This holy ground needs more than users.

Originally posted to Quora Nov 2017