How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence

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Penguin, May 15, 2018 - Body, Mind & Spirit - 480 pages
“Pollan keeps you turning the pages . . . cleareyed and assured.” —New York Times

A #1 New York Times Bestseller, New York Times Book Review 10 Best Books of 2018, and
 New York Times Notable Book 

A brilliant and brave investigation into the medical and scientific revolution taking place around psychedelic drugs--and the spellbinding story of his own life-changing psychedelic experiences


When Michael Pollan set out to research how LSD and psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms) are being used to provide relief to people suffering from difficult-to-treat conditions such as depression, addiction and anxiety, he did not intend to write what is undoubtedly his most personal book. But upon discovering how these remarkable substances are improving the lives not only of the mentally ill but also of healthy people coming to grips with the challenges of everyday life, he decided to explore the landscape of the mind in the first person as well as the third. Thus began a singular adventure into various altered states of consciousness, along with a dive deep into both the latest brain science and the thriving underground community of psychedelic therapists. Pollan sifts the historical record to separate the truth about these mysterious drugs from the myths that have surrounded them since the 1960s, when a handful of psychedelic evangelists inadvertently catalyzed a powerful backlash against what was then a promising field of research.

A unique and elegant blend of science, memoir, travel writing, history, and medicine, How to Change Your Mind is a triumph of participatory journalism. By turns dazzling and edifying, it is the gripping account of a journey to an exciting and unexpected new frontier in our understanding of the mind, the self, and our place in the world. The true subject of Pollan's "mental travelogue" is not just psychedelic drugs but also the eternal puzzle of human consciousness and how, in a world that offers us both suffering and joy, we can do our best to be fully present and find meaning in our lives.
 

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User Review  - john.cooper - LibraryThing

After reading this detailed, intelligent, and eminently reasonable in-depth exploration of the history and possible future of psychedelic substances in Western society, it seems incredible to imagine ... Read full review

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User Review  - 064 - LibraryThing

Last night I finished reading Michael Pollan's latest book, How to Change Your Mind - What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and ... Read full review

Contents

cHApter
21
cHAPTER
82
CHAPTER THREE
138
cHAPTER Four
221
cHAPTER FIVE
291
CHAPTER
331
In Praise of Neural Diversity
397
Glossary
415
Bibliography
439
Copyright

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About the author (2018)

Michael Pollan is the author of eight books, including How to Change Your Mind, CookedFood RulesIn Defense of FoodThe Omnivore’s Dilemma, and The Botany of Desire, all of which were New York Times bestsellers. He is also the author of the audiobook Caffeine: How Coffee and Tea Made the Modern World. A longtime contributor to The New York Times Magazine, Pollan teaches writing at Harvard University and the University of California, Berkeley. In 2010, Time magazine named him one of the one hundred most influential people in the world.

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