How to Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan

How to Change Your Mind

Could psychedelic drugs change our worldview? One of America's most admired writers takes us on a mind-altering journey to the frontiers of human consciousnessWhen LSD was first discovered in the 1940s, it seemed to researchers, scientists and doctors as if the world might be on the cusp of psychological revolution. It promised to shed light on the deep mysteries of consciousness, as well as offer relief to addicts and the mentally ill. But in th...

Details How to Change Your Mind

TitleHow to Change Your Mind
Release DateMay 17th, 2018
PublisherAllen Lane
GenreNonfiction, Science, Psychology, Health, Philosophy, History

Reviews How to Change Your Mind

  • Darwin8u
    "There is so much authority that comes out of the primary mystical experience that it can be threatening to existing hierarchical structures."- Roland Griffiths, quoted in Michael Pollan, How to Change Your Mind"To fall in hell or soar AngelicYou'll need a pinch of psychedelic"- Humphry OsmondI have family that struggle with addiction, depression, PTSD, and anxiety. The idea that one group of compounds (psychedelics) could transform how we view a...
  • David Wineberg
    Michael Pollan’s Brain – on DrugsNeither LSD nor magic mushrooms harm you. They are not addictive, toxic, debilitating or destructive. They cause no illness and have no side effects. They seem to unlock receptors in the brain, causing mashups and unexpected connections (and therefore perceptions). They dissolve the ego by restricting blood flow to the Default Mode Network of the brain, which can cause users to lose the border between their pe...
  • Krista
    Self and Spirit define the opposite ends of a spectrum, but that spectrum needn't reach clear to the heavens to have meaning for us. It can stay right here on earth. When the ego dissolves, so does a bounded conception not only of ourself but of our self-interest. What emerges in its place is invariably a broader, more open-hearted and altruistic – that is, more spiritual – idea of what matters in life. One in which a new sense of connection,...
  • Lou
    I have such a wide range of non-fiction reading interests that sometimes, until I actually see the book and its subject, not even I knew that I wanted to read it! But if it is something I am eager to know more about, I know right away. Let me start by saying, the only drugs I have even taken are those prescribed for me by a doctor, so I have no idea about other drugs, including psychedelic ones. What I do know about is how strong painkillers (mor...
  • Mehrsa
    I read the Pollan essay in the New Yorker about psychedelics and so I picked this up right away. And I'm convinced. I totally want to try this! Wish it wasn't illegal. What was really brilliant about this book is his exploration of the ego and how that leads to so much stuckness and unhappiness. The book is a sober, in-depth account of a radical idea.
  • jeremy
    this is precisely where psychedelic therapy seems to be operating: on a frontier between spirituality and science that is as provocative as it is uncomfortable. michael pollan is one of those authors who can, with ample research, elucidatory prowess, and a captivating writing style, make nearly any subject wholly fascinating and engaging. so it is with his new book, how to change your mind, wherein he explores the intriguing background of psyched...
  • Nathan
    Michael Pollan is a phenomenal writer, and he shines once again with his newest book. He takes a deep dive into the history and science of psychedelics, all while weaving in his own personal narrative. It is an engaging and fascinating read; one that propels the reader on a journey through the re-emergence of this scientific field. For anyone at all interested in the topic, this is probably a must-read. Highly recommended.
  • Lauren
    Remarkable book. I hope this will gain the same prominence that Omnivore's Dilemma did several years ago.Full review to come...
  • Elizabeth Theiss
    Prepare to change your mind about the role of psychedelic drugs in western culture. Or, if you have experience as a psychonaut, get ready for a broad, expansive review of history, research, and the possibilities for public policy.When LSD, mescaline, psilocybin, and other psychedelic drugs first became known in the 1950s and 1960s, academic and medical researchers explored their potential for relieving depression, addiction, and other mental prob...
  • Benjamin Siegel
    I feel lucky to live in a world where Michael Pollan has now written, sometimes quite beautifully, about tripping.
  • Josh Firer
    Going into the past, present, and future of the research into the use of psychedelic drugs and their potential to solve many vexing scientific problems, Michael Pollan reframes these issues in a way that is sure to change many readers' minds. What makes the book compelling, is that the author is convinced by his own research to experiment with psychedelics. His experiences are deeply touching and fun to read about it. This book will give you a lo...
  • Radiantflux
    63rd book for 2018.Pollan offers a great up-to-date of account of the new psychedelic revolution currently underway, lead in no small part by the gradual loosening of restrictions on research over the last two decades that have been in place since the early 1970s. It's an area I know relatively well, and thought Pollan did a good grounded job of reviewing both the history and current science, though I found his style sometimes a little annoying. ...
  • Mason Neil
    I have been fascinated by psychedelics ever since I experienced psilocybin a few years ago and experienced an almost immediate loss of some negative habits that had been having a negative effect on my mental health. Michael Pollan's perspective was particularly attractive to me because I already have a lot of respect for him after reading In Defense of Food and The Omnivores Dilemma. His approach is skeptical and honest, and I found that he wrote...
  • Kate
    I confess I'm a bit of a fan of Michael Pollan. I've read much of his writing on food, and I generally find his journalistic style approachable and informative without being overly dry. I was a bit surprised to learn that he had stepped outside his usual beat to write about psychedelics. And yet, now that I've read the book, the two topics -- food and psychedelics -- seem like two peas in a pod (no pun intended). Pollan draws on much of his knowl...
  • Steven Gripp
    This is an absolute must read. One major point that he really hammers home is that, in terms of mental health in America, there have been stagnant improvements. Through psychedelics research, starting out in the 50s, followed by a long hiatus, then resurfacing in the 90s, we can see that the branding of LSD/mushrooms/DMT as hippie drugs lose that moniker. It's a lengthy book, only because the research is dense. If you find the intimate stories of...
  • Sarah Jane
    I thought the writing was great but the more I read, the less interested I became in this topic. One description of someone’s trip was fine, by the tenth description I was bored.
  • Timothy
    An important book, an important topic. Michael Pollan is an engaging writer, and despite many concerns I had going into the book, he maintained a healthy skepticism while also allowing himself to fully engage with the topic.Too many people, in my estimation, enter the world of psychedelics with pre-concieved notions of meaning and spirituality. As Pollan reiterates over and over, "set and setting" play a large role in the experience one has with ...
  • Tadas Talaikis
    Here's what I'LL tell YOU about psychedelics - there is actually nothing to realize, because everything is already within yourself. Several decades ago, when I heavily experimented with salvia divinorum (when it was legal in our country) I realized this one thing, it someway crystallized my mind into this - if you want to do/ achieve something, go and f*cking do it. Such words wouldn't express the true meaning of this, but I think it was because ...
  • Valerie
    The history of psychadelic use did not interest me, although some of the stories surrounding the counter culture did help me to see a better glimpse of political and historical events happening in the background of my childhood. I was extremely interested in the idea of psychdelics as aids in managing depression and anxiety disorders, as well as its uses in pallative care and addictive behaviors. Remember: I work with teenagers and young adults....
  • Teo 2050
    9h @ 1.5x. The audiobook version is expertly narrated by the author himself. Overall, this is probably the easiest book to recommend to anyone interested in a recent book on psychedelic science, covering lots of aspects from history, characters, and culture, to the up-to-date neuro and clinical research that is on track to bring psychedelic-assisted therapy into mainstream within a decade.Together with some personal experiences, it also reminds u...
  • Francesca Marciano
    Riveting, inspiring, this book opens so many new, exciting perspectives. Hopefully it'll help reverse the stigma on psychedelic substances so they can be used by science to open new doors in our consciousness, something we really ought to do if we wish for a better world. Really excited after reading this, I wish we could all use some LSD as the antidote to our existential angst, depression, fear of death and blindness to the perfection of the na...
  • Ralph
    This is a must-read for psychonauts and anyone wanting to gain a deeper understanding of psychedelics. Pollan shows us how psychedelics have been a part of different societies for healing, how psychedelics entered American culture, how it was used by therapists for healing patients, what led to it being outlawed, and how it has been starting to get a resurgence today. He also documents his own personal adventure to LSD, psilocybin, 5-MeO-DMT, and...
  • Danette Martinez
    Maybe I'm just looking for a reason to find a big pile of hallucinogens and take them, but the potential of these for creating existential meaning is interesting at least and potentially paradigm shifting for those of us in mental health.
  • Storyheart
    Informative, well-written and thought-provoking (if a tad too long.)
  • Matt
    One of the most eye-opening books on consciousness I've read. Pollan does an amazing job at speaking from the view of a beginner and guiding the reader through the history around why Psychedelic research was banned in the first place and its re-emergence lately. So excited to see the future of where this research goes and hope it lives up to the hype its receiving!
  • Alis Anagnostakis
    Mind expandingThis well-researched and wonderfully written book challenges one to revisit their worldview. Consciousness might well be one of the greatest mysteries of the world, and this book will likely provoke you to explore it in a new way. It offers no definitive answers, but certainly raises some new and unique questions.
  • Christopher Farrell
    Pollan takes a left side turn from his usual food-centered research to delve into the world of psychedelics, and tries to ponder its use in future therapy/medical use. This is a really interesting subject, and Pollan's first hand descriptions of his trips are wild - some tech heavy stuff bogs down the last third but this is well worth a read if you have any interest in how our mind works.
  • Chris
    This is a pretty interesting book about an extremely fascinating subject.I struggled over whether to give it 3 or 4 stars but went for 4 because it does cover a lot of ground in a readable and relatively engaging manner.What I liked about it was the broad overview of the history of psychedelics, the anecdotal stories from those who had pioneered psychedelic research in the 50s and 60s and most of all the final chapter on the applications of psych...
  • Jt O'Neill
    Ever since I heard that Michael Pollan was writing a book about psychedelics and their practical application, I've been waiting for it. Finally, my copy arrived at the library this week and I jumped into it. It didn't disappoint although , at the end of the review, I will reveal a piece of disappointment...I was eager to read this book , first, because I have come to trust Michael Pollan. I've read his books on food and they made sense to me. He ...