The hallucinogen DMT is known for its highly intense but very brief trips, lasting just a few minutes. For several years, researchers have been developing an approach to extend the DMT experience to hours, or even days, by intravenously delivering the drug to carefully maintain its concentration in the brain. For science. And now, a Colorado organization called DMTx is training a dozen brave psychonauts to go on these deep journeys into innerspace. From the New Republic:
Much of the theory behind DMTx comes from a 2016 paper in Frontiers in Physiology by Andrew Gallimore and Rick Strassman, in which the authors laid out a method to maintain a stable brain concentration of DMT using intravenous infusion. "The phenomenological content of dream states and hallucinations in psychotic disorders have been studied extensively," the authors wrote, "whilst the endogenous human hallucinogen DMT reliably and reproducibly generates one of the most unusual states of consciousness available, its phenomenology has only begun to be characterized."[…]
[DMTx principal organizer David] McQueen remains open to whether a psychonaut experience is just "in their head" or something else. Besides cohorts of artists and spiritual leaders, he says he wants to bring scientists from a host of fields to participate, potentially unlocking practical yet fantastical answers to the world's woes. "The goal being that this would be like an advanced creative problem-solving tool for technological advancement," says McQueen. He's a fan of an aphorism dubiously attributed to Albert Einstein: "We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them."[…]
[One of the psychonauts, Kevin] Thorbahn, who's been in DMTx's program now for around four years since first tuning in to the idea on that fateful late-night drive, thinks there are two types of people who are attracted to powerful psychedelics. First, of course, there are those who like to party—dorm-room floor disciples. "And then there's another type that look at it as more of an experiment," he explains. They "want to explore and really understand these medicines at a deeper level." He identifies with that second group. And his hopes for exploring the DMT space and what he can bring back are ambitious. "We might have to download some sort of information from these experiences … how to better ourselves and better the planet," he says.