Hallucinogens vs. Lucidogens: The Debate is Open
Juan C. Gonzalez, PhD www.categorizacion.org (Spanish)
http://hallucinations.risc.cnrs.fr (French, short section is English if you click English content)
"Rising Researchers" March 23, 2008 Basel
What issues are at stake?
Conceptual issues (not only terminology)
Mental health issues
"Hallucinogen" as a standard term
Contextualized in cognitive science and philosophy
1. Analysis of "hallucinogen" (negative and positive claims)
2. Question: Can some be classified as "lucidogens?"
Charles Duits- French writer- ate peyote in 1956 (1969)- commented that it produced purification of senses, satisfaction, increased strength, increased vitality, flexibility, health
Terms peyote as a Lucidogen
What is a Hallucinogen? "A substance that induces hallucinations"
What is a hallucination? "A perception that is unfounded, mistaken, or deluded; a perception that is not linked to reality"
What is a Lucidogen? A consciousness or cognition inducing/enhancing (vs. Hallucinogen, see above- often perceived negative connotation)
Negative claim- No realistic concept of hallucination (false perception of perception with with no object or objective reality for its basis) can simultaneously satisfy these requirements:
1. Reliability condition ("A physically and mentally sound and otherwise reliable subject...")
2. Delusional condition ("...who claims to or shows that they are perceiving something that is not there...")
3. Background condition (but other vision and behavior remains the same except those directly involved with the hallucination)
4. Critical condition (self/others subject to) (?)
Negative claim is that any account of these 4 things occurring simultaneously (as a hallucination by definition) is inaccurate
Positive claim: Four senses- not mutually exclusive:
a) Profane or mystical state, visions, modified inner state- can overlap or coexist with ordinary states (substance induced or other causes)
b) Endogenous visions and other states that have a dreamlike quality (ex. Salvia)
c) Hyper-perception- states whose cognitive scope reaches beyond ordinary objects or contents of perceptual consciousness
d) Perceptual distortions and visual phenomenon, effects within visual field but still in contact with the world and objects in it (ex. some visual phenomenon of LSD or mushrooms)
Can we say some substances or uses can be classified as Lucidogens or Lucidogenic use?
YES. In situations "a" and "c" above especially/particularly
Term depends on the situation at hand- detailed and specific considerations for determination- but Lucidogen is very often appropriate
Opinion that only plant that induces true hallucinations in the classic sense something like Datura
If one must choose one or the other for whatever reason, rather than judging on specific use/substance/circumstance/effects, data and analysis seem to support "Lucidogen" as the preferred term