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What are Entheogens?

What are Entheogens?

The term Entheogen refers to plants, fungi, and natural sources such as mushrooms, cacti, plants and /or extracted combinations of plants.

Our proposed bill calls for the decriminalization of the following entheogens:


Psilocybin, found in "magic" mushrooms, is recognized for its therapeutic potential in treating conditions like depression, anxiety, PTSD, anorexia nervosa, OCD, and substance dependencies. Its psychoactive properties facilitate profound psychological insights and emotional processing, making it a valuable tool in various healing and mental health contexts. Psilocybin has a long history of use in spiritual and traditional practices, now increasingly acknowledged in modern therapeutic settings.



N,N-Dimethyltryptamine, DMT, is a psychedelic compound found in various plants and animals, including humans. Known for inducing intense visual and emotional experiences, DMT is celebrated for its profound impact on consciousness and spiritual exploration. DMT's use in ayahuasca ceremonies, guided by shamans, is deeply rooted in the spiritual traditions of the Amazonian tribes. Its growing interest in therapeutic contexts highlights its potential for psychological healing and personal growth.



Mescaline, a psychoactive alkaloid found primarily in the peyote cactus, is known for its potent psychedelic effects. Traditionally used in Native American spiritual rituals, it facilitates deeply introspective and transformative experiences. Mescaline's influence extends to the realms of personal insight and healing, making it a significant substance in various cultural and therapeutic practices. Its use, characterized by vivid visual experiences and profound emotional revelations, continues to be explored for its potential in psychological and spiritual growth.



Ibogaine, a psychoactive compound derived from the African iboga shrub, is notable for its use in addiction treatment and spiritual ceremonies. Traditionally utilized in rites of passage and healing rituals in West African cultures, ibogaine is recognized for its ability to induce intense, introspective experiences that can be pivotal in breaking cycles of substance dependency. Its unique properties offer profound psychological introspection and have been the subject of growing interest for their potential in treating opioid addiction, among other substance use disorders.

What are Entheogens?

Mechanism of Action

Most entheogens are classified as "serotonergic psychedelics" due to their action on serotonin receptors in the brain, primarily at the 5HT2A receptor sites. This interaction is responsible for the profound changes in perception, mood, and cognition commonly experienced with these substances.

  • These compounds typically produce their effects by mimicking serotonin, leading to altered neural communication and an enhanced sensory experience.

  • Examples include DMT (found in ayahuasca), Psilocybin (in magic mushrooms), and Mescaline.


Ibogaine's Pharmacological Profile:


  • Ibogaine is unique among entheogens with its ability to affect multiple neurotransmitter systems, acting as a 5HT2A receptor agonist, an NMDA receptor antagonist, which may affect learning and memory, and an opioid receptor antagonist, potentially reducing opioid withdrawal symptoms.

What are Entheogens?

Safety & Harm Potential

Harm Potential of
Psilocybin Mushrooms

Abuse Potential:

Toxicity Comparison:


Nichols, 2016, Pharmacol Rev, 68, 264-355., Dos Santos et al., 2021, Risk Manage Health Policy, 14, 901-910., Johnson et al., 2018, Neuropharmacology, 142, 143-166.

Therapeutic Uses

Treatment of Mental Health Disorders: Entheogens have shown promise in the treatment of depression, anxiety, PTSD, and other mental health conditions, offering new avenues for therapeutic application.

Latest Research

To catch up on the latest scientific research regarding entheogens check out, which has a curated list of references relevant to physicians, scientists, and the intellectually curious.

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