A new psychedelic holiday has been declared for this Sunday as cities around the world host the first annual 9/20 Psilocybin Mushroom Day. With a rallying cry of “Mushrooms are Medicine,” the locally organized events will feature a swathe of educational lectures, workshops and film screenings to help raise awareness and activism for the psychoactive mushroom.
The day began as an idea from activist and psychedelic advocate Nicholas Reville after realizing that mushrooms are well positioned to gain greater social acceptance like medical marijuana has done in recent years, but had no coalescing point like Bicycle Day for LSD or 4/20 for cannabis. Since mushrooms are not a part of daily life like smoking weed, Reville wanted to create a focal point of a single day for people to come together and say they care about the potential of psychoactive mushrooms and meet others who agree. Around him grew a coalition of 9/20 founders who organized a host of events to show the grassroots pressure to normalize mushrooms as a medicine, sacrament and basic human right.
With over 30 events around the world, each with its own unique flavor, the organizers did not want to create a centralized structure but instead to allow each event to grow organically, tied together by a focus on awareness and education. The project began to lift off after Reville reached out to Students for a Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP), an organization that acts as a training ground for young drug reform activists at the university level. Members will host events in DC, Virginia Tech, UC Davis and a number of other campuses, though the largest gathering might be in Mexico City, a fitting tribute to the country with some of the longest running sacred mushroom traditions in the world.
At the event thrown by Reville in Providence, RI (and a few of the others), they'll be screening Little Saints, a film by Oliver Quintilla about six people who travel to Mexico to meet a local Mazatec shaman named Natalia for a session for healing. It hints at the potential future of mushrooms and other psychedelic as tools for both physical ailments and psychological difficulties. As Western peer-reviewed research finally starts to study the power of psilocybin and psilocin (the active ingredients in the magic mushrooms most known in the United States), current science is rediscovering the mushroom's uses for mental ailments, addiction and anxiety around the end of life.
The event in Montreal hosted by Psymposia and the Canadian arm of SSDP features MAPS founder Rick Doblin and Katherine MacLean sharing the medical research on magic mushrooms, a psychedelic storytelling session on Saturday night, and holotropic breathwork for the participants. Over in the rising psychedelic hotbed of Detroit, the Women & Entheogen's Conference continues its work with lectures on sex and psilocybin, a poetry session and a workshop on growing your own mushrooms.
The 9/20 event is focused on spreading awareness of the medical and mental benefits available from a freely available fungi and the notion that we have an inalienable human right to alter our own consciousness as we please.
920 Coalition: http://www.920coalition.org/
17 September 2015
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Coming to a City Near You: The First 9/20 Psilocybin Mushroom Day