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[Contents][Appendix 1]
[Reference 202][Reference 204]

E is for Ecstasy by Nicholas Saunders

Appendix 1: Reference Section

203 Interview with a rabbi at the West London Synagogue, 5/6/94

After a talk which touched on the need to prepare for death, I asked a question about the value of MDMA in terminal patients (referring to Charles Grob's study in LA). He replied that MDMA was valuable for the dying as much as at raves in that it allowed the feeling of oneness and seeing life from a new aspect. Prohibition is not the best way to deal with substances that can be used in ways that are as sacramental as communion wine. They may arouse feelings of awkwardness which may be uncomfortable but are essential for deeper understanding of our selves. However, there are other methods such as are described in a book called Mind Aerobics.

At the end, the rabbi beckoned me to come up onto the stage. He took me into a fire exit staircase, out of earshot of his entourage, and told me that he could not afford to undermine his project by publicly supporting the use of illegal drugs, but that he had my book (which he praised) and he believed that MDMA and other psychedelics cold be used to immense benefit. Not only for personal awareness, but also for the sake of Gaia or the cosmic wellbeing of the planet. He hinted that the MDMA experience was of the same quality and potential value as other mystical experiences, and suggested that priests should take the drug themselves both in order to understand young people and to see the validity of spiritual experiences produced by drugs. He referred Masro's conclusion concerning 'peak experiences' that taking drugs was like reaching the top of a mountain by cable car instead of the toil of climbing - it can be seen as cheating, but it gets you to the same place. He ended by giving me a big hug and encouraging me in my work.

[Contents][Appendix 1]
[Reference 202][Reference 204]
E is for Ecstasy by Nicholas Saunders (
HTMLized by Lamont Granquist (