The Drugs of the Future
One of my impressions of psychedelics is that they let you take your next month of vitality and burn it up in a few hours, and in that blaze of self-destruction you get to see what life is. In my own body, I felt this acutely, in the way that only meditators seem to feel. Because I live in those nerves consciously, as an everyday mode of being, I could feel the damage. The only reason I felt drugs are not worth it is because I was the one who had to repair the damage, which I felt as acutely as you would if someone sanded the skin off your arms and legs.
In my experience with meditation, ecstatic experiences are youthening, and rejuvenating, not depleting. That is, naturally-occurring ecstatic experiences seem to reverse the aging process. They seem to allow the body to repair itself on a very deep level. By contrast, the substances we call "drugs" seem to age you very fast.
But what about if someone designs better drugs than LSD, marijuana and Magic Mushrooms?
Remember that drugs are big business. Huge corporations are involved in acquiring and distributing them. So much of what you hear is the advertising these people put out. Because of this, corporations are at work making better drugs - Viagra for your soul. There is money to be made. In the future, it is possible that better drugs may be developed. I don't know if this will actually happen, but check out this article from Foreign Policy, of all places. Peter Schwartz is chairman of the Global Business Network, and he presents this scenario:
Thirty-five years from now, the illicit professionals who remain in the business will be custom drug designers catering to the wealthy. Their concoctions will be fine-tuned to one’s own body and neural chemistry. In time, the most destructive side effects will be designed out, perhaps even addiction itself. These custom drug dealers will design the perfect chemical experience for those who can afford it. The combination of cocaine with skiing, sex, or other intense physical activities is common today; likewise for pot and making music. In the future, there will be custom drugs for meals, golf, gardening, and more. Like crystal meth today, some drugs will reach the point of home manufacturing. And they will all be designed to make their use invisible to others—no red eyes, nervous tics, or lethargy...
The boundary between legal performance enhancement (Viagra) and the illegal drugs of pleasure and creativity will blur. The political and social pressure against drug use will remain, but it will increasingly resemble the campaigns against performance-enhancing drugs for athletes. Widespread use will spark debates about fairness and authenticity: Is a drug-using musician better than one who composes and performs naturally? Is it fair for only the wealthy to have the richest sexual or culinary experiences?
Honoring the tradition of links:
the FUTURE NOW site found this story.
Personally, I am sure that many billions of dollars, and millions of people, will pursue this path of custom-designed drugs.
And I still feel that you can tune your own nervous system to experience intense pleasure from just normal everyday life, the sun on your skin, the breeze, the music of life, children laughing, the feeling in your heart when you give freely to someone in need. For people who have an imbalance in the chemistry in their brain, these custom drugs will be miraculous.