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A Case in Defense of Salvia Divinorum

A Case in Defense of Salvia Divinorum



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Published by EROCx1
My notes from an interview I gave from the pro-salvia point of view.
My notes from an interview I gave from the pro-salvia point of view.

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Published by: EROCx1 on Aug 04, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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A case in defense of Salvia divinorum
I was recently approached by some journalists who are currently performingresearch for a report they are producing on Salvia divinorum, with a focus on itslegal status. I am not going to name them until their work has been releasedbecause I do not want alert anyone who may want to suppress the message I hope isconveyed.One of the producers contacted me to arrange a telephone interview which I gladlyaccepted and conducted on August 1, 2008. While I believe the producers arehonorable people wanting to tell a fair and honest story. I do feel some trepidationas to how the editors and executives of national news corporation may influence orchange the final story. Therefore as soon as the interview was completed. I wrotedown my version of what was said. The following is what I wrote:I did my interview today and am pretty pleased with how it went. At first it seemedtheir primary interest in me was my perspective as the proprietor of GaianBotanicals. However I tried not to focus too much on that and steered the focusmore on the plant and the issues around it.The first thing I said was go to entheogen.com and read what the members had tosay about this interview. I consulted them the day prior, seeking their input andwisdom.I asked the journalist interviewing me if he had tried Salvia divinorum?Unfortunately he replied with a no. I recommended that any professionalinvestigator preparing a national story on an ineffable experience should at leastinvest 15 minutes and try the herb already. It's like someone reporting on a religionand the person being interviewed said, "Do you want to meet god?" And theinterviewer says, "No." Why wouldn't you? It’s safe and legal. I don't believe anyonecould possibly comprehend the Salvia experience without direct experience with it.Maybe he will, maybe he won’t. That’s his personal and private choice, but I hopehe does.He had all the scientific literature so there was really no point in repeating what healready knew.I made it clear the Salvia divinorum is NOT like any other psychedelic.This includes Marijuana, LSD, Magic Mushrooms or any other of the knownpsychedelics. This analogy is all too commonly used by the media and is moreinaccurate then claiming all food tastes the same and has the same nutritionalproperties or that all medicine is the same. These analogies are absurd.
I continued with the question, why make Salvia divinorum illegal? It is likely thatover the past decade at least a million of people have tried it in some form. No onehas died, became ill, addicted, mentally deranged or suffered any other from of disability due to Salvia. This is even with production of extracts and cultivationbeing somewhat underground. Not regulated like what's offered at your corner storeand still no ill effects with Salvia. The chemicals sold by your neighborhoodpharmacy are probably more toxic.The government technically does not have the authority to declare somethingSchedule 1 unless it’s a hazard to public safety, addictive and / or has NO medicaluse. Salvia divinorum is not a threat; it is not addictive and has demonstratedsignificant potential medical use in the treatment of depression, addiction, amongother possibilities. Doctors will not be able to determine its best uses until theyhave had an opportunity to thoroughly investigate it.This is a plant is unique. Salvinorin A is a diterpenoid which acts as a kappa opioidreceptor agonist. This is important because it is the first known compound with suchaction that is not an alkaloid. All the known hallucinogens are tryptamines andphenethylamines which act on the serotonergic system. Salvinorin A practically setsa speed record for how fast it crosses the blood brain barrier. If one were studyingmedicines that needed to rapidly reach the brain, Salvinorin would be a goodcompound to study. What all of this means to science and medicine is that Salviacontains a completely unique pharmacological action previously unknown thus itextremely valuable to humanity. Not only to learn more on how the brain works, butalso for its potential medicinal value. Shouldn’t these discoveries be celebratedinstead of persecuted?Most legislators argue Salvia is similar to illegal substances therefore it too should beillegal. The Federal government all ready has a law that makes any substance similarto illegal substances also illegal. It’s called the Analog Act. This only further proves(as previously mentioned) that Salvia is special and is not like the other classicpsychedelics.Please keep in mind when these things are made illegal, they are not only restrictedfor use by ordinary people. They are restricted from scientific study. Unless your agovernment lab trying to maintain the illegal status. Well except a few recentscientific studies which have been allowed for DMT, Psilocybin and MDMA. Theauthorities were finally forced to admit that the most powerful substances known toact upon the human mind may have some medical use? Something most people whohave experimented with them already knew.My friend Fraser Clark once said only two things can change a person in a singleinstant: Psychoactive drugs, and direct religious experience. The greatesttransformation would then come via a synthesis of these two: a religious experiencecreated by psychoactive drugs. This is a very wise and true observation. The ancientinstitution of Shamanism has relied on these powerful tools for such purposes sincepre-history. In fact it is completely plausible that entheogens have played asignificant role in our human evolution. But that’s another story for another day.When addressing the public in general, I don’t want to get too far out of theircurrent belief system.
Back to the legal status. Today we have let some thirty-five years of potentialscientific study be wasted. In a field of medicine with the potential to aid victims of war, rape, molestation, abuse, assaults and traumas. Medicines that can reduce theanxieties of the terminally ill dying from cancer and other horrible diseases. Helpthem come to better terms with their death.Drug addiction and alcoholism could have been cured. Making families more loving,healthy and happy.35 years of scientific and medical progress lost, all due to paranoia of entheogens?Well that’s sorta off topic of Salvia, but I wanted to lay out some of theconsequences of illegalization. Lets just end this point by stating the issue is notthat Salvia is threat to public safety; the issue is that the establishment fearspsychedelics. Free thinking isn’t conducive to controlling a population. They wanteveryone to fit within the cultural paradigm of being good little consumer robotswho go about playing their game and following the rules with out questioning theirauthority or motives. In the 60's the US government wanted to escalate the war inVietnam and large parts of the population were using psychedelics. The authority’spropaganda was not effective and the people would not tolerate the actions of theirgovernment. Therefore the government had to put an end it to it all. Of coursemany mistakes were made by the drug users of that era. It was all too new. Weknow much more about these things now.California and Maine have taken very reasonable and wise steps in regulating Salvia.No sales to minors. Everyone in the Salvia divinorum community applauds this. Wehate to see kids acting stupid on YouTube more then anyone. I wish Salvia wereinaccessible to minors. I am a parent and I don't want my kids using anything either.My wife and I are very involved with our children's life and take the responsibility toeducate them and raise them to make wise decisions. My interest in entheogens isprivate; I don't talk about or use anything in their presence. If when they areresponsible adults, they choose to explore this domain. I will be glad that I havesome wisdom and guidance to offer on the topic. Not what most uninformed parentsoffer.When it comes to teens. As it’s always been, some will be determined to get high. If Salvia is what they get their hands on. It’s allot better then what this demographichas used in the past. Paint, glue or solvent huffing, computer duster inhaling,prescription drug abuse or even worse. Dangerous and addictive drugs that poisonthe mind and body and can lead toward destructive and criminal lifestyles. That’snot what Salvia is, nor will it ever be. Not in the least. This distinction must bemade crystal clear.This is about Americans just surrendering their rights and not caring about freedom.We have become so conditioned to just doing what we are told. As the late TerenceMcKenna said. "If the words 'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' don't includecognitive liberty, then the Declaration of Independence isn't worth the hemp it waswritten on." I didn’t have the exact quote with me in my car, but I like my versionbetter.

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