“If you take acid, you can see God.”

What is this strange, magical, wondrous substance? It is the catalyst for the summer of love. One of the most potent drugs known to mankind. Greatly misunderstood, yet a key to The Doors of Perception. Exploited by the CIA in a secret mind-control program. A physical connection to the spirit. One of the greatest inventions of mankind.

Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is often called a hallucinogen by the uninformed. Those in the know call it a psychedelic. I call it the dissolver and creator of reality. Yes, LSD can create hallucinations, but labeling it a hallucinogen is like calling the sun “a thing that makes light.” Psychedelics allow the user to connect to states of “non-ordinary reality.” They have the potential for creating ego-shattering, soul-cleansing, spirit-soaring, life-altering states, insights, connections and deconstructions. Being on LSD is like letting the director of consciousness go on vacation. No longer will thoughts, emotions, sights, sounds, patterns happen in a logical progression of time. Suddenly, things become much simpler as you realize that flowers you pass by every day are actually the most beautiful expression of creation ever. Gone is the need or the urge to understand, categorize, explain and contain things. Exuberant happiness billows and raises you up to the heavens.

Color, art, music, people — all seen for the first time again. Sure, red is still just red, but how did it get to be SO FUCKING RED?!?!?! And how is it that the red is also blue now that it’s a representation of the vibrations emanating from the speakers? Strange interconnecting energies emanate from all levels of awareness.

It does not make sense that people would eat mushrooms but not try acid. Many have said, “It’s not natural.” Yeah, neither is packing over 20,000 people into a half square mile. Why is our community an acceptable “unnatural” state? The point is that mushrooms, though natural, are a much heavier, more intense, trickier entheogen than acid. Acid trips are more likely to be light, happy and uplifting. Mushrooms will take you to the dark side much more quickly.

Acid itself is fairly natural in its origins. Lysergic acid is a natural substance found in many plants seeds such as morning glory flower seeds. Originally, LSD was synthesized from Lysergic acid by Dr. Albert Hofmann. On the infamous bicycle day (the eve of 4/20, 1943) Dr. Hofmann ingested LSD to explore what possible effects the drug might have. What he found fueled a revolution of our culture, and of our minds.

Artists, therapists, writers, musicians, scientists and many others have found LSD to be useful to them in life’s endeavors. This drug facilitates profound insights into the workings of the universe and the human psyche. Doctors have long used this tool for therapeutic psychological healing and scientific exploration. Francis Crick discovered the double-helix nature of DNA under the influence of LSD. Likewise, the polymerase chain reaction, an important scientific tool used in biology for replicating genetic strands, was thought of under the influence. Both scientists received the Nobel Prize for their efforts. Perhaps the awards should have gone to acid instead.

How would the government tap into the infinite potential of LSD? For subjugation and oppression of course! MK-ULTRA was a secret program run by the CIA whose goal was to discover a method to control a person’s mind. From the early 1950s through the late ’60s, different types of drugs and techniques were used in hopes of achieving this aim. Private citizens were given doses of LSD without their knowledge or permission.

“Accidentally” receiving LSD could lead to a very scary and dramatic experience. It is important to treat this special material with the respect it deserves. LSD will reveal and amplify thoughts and feelings. A person taking an unknown dose in a loud, crowded concert venue alone is tempting fate. A user should inquire about the dose. Having too little rather than too much is better for first timers. Also consider mental, emotional, physical and social state before tripping. A happy, healthy person who is with friends is much more likely to have a pleasant, meaningful journey. It is possible to experience heaven, so long as we recognize that fear is hell.