As I sit here writing this article, the microdose of LSD starting to take a hold – which was 1/8th of a normal dose – I wonder how much more “plastic” my brain became. How much more agile have I become in my thinking? Why am I much more creative after a psychedelic microdose?
For the past decade or so, the idea of microdosing psychedelics for personal or professional development has gained in popularity. Many people on Silicon Valley swears by its ability to give them a competitive edge within their particular field of expertise.
Now there could be some hard scientific evidence to suggest “why” it seemingly makes people more creative and in many cases, break out of their “stuckness” – if we could use that non-scientific terminology.
Understanding the concept of “Neurolock”
I believe it was Stephen Gilligan, protégé of Milton Erickson that used the term “Neuro-lock” in his book about Generative Trance States. Essentially, he argued that by the use of generative trance states – you could induce neuroplasticity which would allow the person to “unhinge or unlock” from their neurologically predefined state. More on Neurolock here.
This is because “neurons that fire together wire together”, meaning – that overtime, there is a physical neural network in the brain that makes up “you”. Your behavioral patterns, your response triggers, everything you do consciously and unconsciously is mapped into your brain via neurons that – when repeatedly receiving signals, becomes stronger and more efficient.
Gilligan said that when a person runs into problems in their life, it’s because of the rigidity of their neural network, that doesn’t allow them to see a solution because it physically sits beyond their neuro-capabilities.
Gilligan suggested generative trance to induce plasticity – however, psychonauts may have been unknowingly ‘gelling up their neurons’ to be more plastic a recent study suggests.
LSD “The Great Interruptor”
“Typically, “neurons that fire together, wire together.” But the researchers found that LSD decoupled the relationship between structural and functionally connectivity, indicating that brain activity is “less constrained than usual by the presence or absence of an underlying anatomical connection” under the influence of the substance.
“We know that brain structure has a large influence on brain function under normal conditions. Our research shows that under the effects of LSD, this relationship becomes weaker: function is less constrained by structure. This is largely the opposite of what happens during anesthesia,” Luppi explained.
As the researchers wrote in their study, under the influence of LSD, it appears that “the brain is free to explore a variety of functional connectivity patterns that go beyond those dictated by anatomy – presumably resulting in the unusual beliefs and experiences reported during the psychedelic state, and reflected by increased functional complexity.”” – PsyPost
In other words, LSD seems to disengage the “neuro-lock” Gilligan was talking about for the time being. This makes one wonder, if a full dose of LSD can unhinge the lock, do microdoses simply grease it? Is this ability to not be constrained by your neurological anatomy truly advantageous?
Thinking outside of the box – literally!
The idea of “thinking outside of the box” becomes infinitely more material when we realize that “the box” is an anatomical structure formed within the brain by neurons that “fire and wire” together. If we as a society use the expression – “think outside of the box” as a means of suggesting “be more innovative” – then it makes sense that microdosing allows the individual to literally think outside of their own mental boxes.
Of course, I’m not advising folks to go out right now and get acid and start microdosing. I’m not telling folks to not do that either – if you’re reading this, I assume you are a responsible adult or at least somewhat aware of the principle of cause and effect.
I for one have been microdosing for years, but I also have been macrodosing for years too. If all goes well, this weekend I’ll partake in an Ayahuasca ceremony. The point is – I’m experienced with non-ordinary states.
Psychedelics isn’t for everyone and while many a psychonauts swear that “if everyone could just have one mushroom trip, we’d break out the guitars and sing in a new Aeon” – the truth of the matter is that not everybody “should” consume psychedelics.
There was a reason why mystics and shamans were the ones who took psychedelics and relayed the messages back to the “common folk”. I don’t think everyone is meant to take psychedelics. I’ve seen some that simply shouldn’t.
However – this isn’t to say that these breakthroughs in psychedelic therapy would be lost on the general public. Knowing our earth scientists – they’ll try to isolate the specific component that allows us to disengage neurolock and remove the “trippy” factor from it. In all likeliness, ADHD medication could be revolutionized with a bit of LSD.