Messianic Mystics: When Spirituality and Politics Meet.

This provocative talk will explore the messianic/prophetic function within psychedelic phenomenology, practices, and movements. In contrast to the archetypal mystical-unitive ahistorical ego-dissolving state, we can find the revelatory-prophetic-messianic state. Such revelatory states are active, sociopolitical, historical, moral, and sometimes full of ego. The talk will examine the messianic events of Allen Ginsberg, Master Irineu, and John Wilson (Moonhead) – which have contributed to the diffusion of LSD, Daime, and Peyote, respectively. Such diffusion of the substances occurs in non-linear bursts, stemming from revelatory events to significant movement. Yet, other micro messianic states and movements occur as well. It will be argued that a weak messianic force exists in many psychedelic practices; that it fills the practice with a sense of mission, meaning, and hope; that revelatory insights are intertwined with redemptive actions; and that the molecules are playing with this messianic function so we will spread them passionately.

Leor Roseman is a researcher at the Centre for Psychedelic Research, Imperial College London. He received his MRes and PhD under the mentorship of Prof. Robin Carhart-Harris and Prof. David Nutt, and played an essential role in establishing the Centre. His research interests are diverse and cover neuroscientific, phenomenological, therapeutic, anthropological, and psychosocial aspects of psychedelic use.

Currently, Leor is investigating relational processes and group dynamics in psychedelic rituals. Together with Palestinian and Israeli activists and researchers, he is developing a praxis of research & action which utilises the potential of psychedelics for peacebuilding, liberation and justice. They hope to create a relational-participatory approach that focuses on both personal and societal healing and considers action and healing as intertwined.