DMT On The Rise! 1.4 Million Americans Have Smoked It
N, N-Dimethyltryptamine is strong stuff, some say it‘s even the strongest around. And yet, it appears naturally in hundreds of plants - and even in mammals. Not long ago, it was discovered in the brain of living rats for the first time; a breakthrough, literally.
DMT is most commonly consumed in the Ayahuasca brew, which has been integral part of amazonian spirituality for millennia. But with the advent of the internet chemist, purified freebase DMT has been making the rounds. Vaporized in a pipe, the substance launches the psychonaut into what can only be described as the peak of the psychedelic experience. With the intensity of a rocket launch, the mind is propelled into a bizarre psychedelic universe, one that has profoundly inspired the works of Terence McKenna. While not without critique, his talks still remain some of the most intriguing and fascinating accounts of the experience.
Maybe it is exactly its sheer strength that is appealing to so many people. As it turns out, the US National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that some 1,475,000 Americans experimented with the substance.
What is DMT?
This might very well be an impossible question to answer, but DMT can be approached by description. While DMT isn‘t the most potent psychedelic in terms of quantity needed to take off, it certainly is one of the most powerful experiences to be had.
DMT is a tryptamine alkaloid and is structurally analogous to serotonin and melatonin. Psilocybin, respectively psilocin, are orally active cousins of DMT, which is evident from their chemical name: 4-HO-DMT for psilocin. DMT itself is not orally active, but psilocin is. In that regard, magic mushrooms can well be regarded as an orally active form of DMT, although the effects are quite distinct when smoked in its freebase form.
It is currently unclear which role and function endogenous DMT plays in the mammal body. Dr Rick Stassman, a leading scientist in the field of clinical DMT research, speculates that DMT is involved in the creation of dreams. But very little is currently understood about its role, which might not ultimately be due to the fact that the experience far surpasses any of our paradigms with which we describe the world.
Why is DMT taking off now?
DMT saw quite a bit of cultural interest in the last few years. Dr. Strassman‘s book and studies have put the substance back on the radar. His documentary „The Spirit Molecule“ and other films that center around the DMT have further made knowledge about it more accessible.
Another factor is the Ayahuasca culture that has emerged over the last decade. As more and more Ayahuasca tourist flock to Peru, DMT naturally becomes part of their experience. Through trips to South America, the substance becomes legally accessible for many people that otherwise couldn‘t experience it easily.
For some far out DMT talk from McKenna check out this incredible video: