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Chapter 4: Mescaline

   2022    Medicine
The last episode explores Mescaline, the psychoactive molecule in San Pedro and peyote cacti, a sacred medicine that Native Americans have had to fight for the right to use. At the Indigenous practices there's always an elder, someone who knows the territory very well, who's presiding. There's usually a group, a community is involved, There's always an intention, a purpose to what you're doing, and you're treating it as sacred, in order to achieve altered states of consciousness, which contribute to worship in various ways, or celebration or healing.
But maybe all this is not so new to Western culture after all. In the old Greek histories of Eleusis, people who were initiated there got the drink, the kykeon, and then they had the illumination. The precise recipe is a mystery, but we know that the kykeon was a psychoactive brew that was used at the Eleusinian mysteries, a sacred annual ritual of enlightenment practiced by some of the world's greatest minds including Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. So why did this ritual come to an end more than 1,000 years ago? Was the possibility of illumination or achieving a higher consciousness considered threatening to the powers that be? Have the drug wars been merely an extension of that fear?
Psychedelics has a major part in how we can heal as a community, how we can heal as a city, and how we can heal as a country. The current renaissance of psychedelics could not come at a better time as the world confronts a crisis in mental health. But psychedelics have much to offer. The psychedelic experience changes the mind in ways that will help scientists better understand how it works. All these altered states allow us to probe what is the greatest mystery in all of nature. The emergence from mere matter of something as miraculous as consciousness. But an even bigger question is whether psychedelics might help us address the environmental crisis of how we think about our place in nature. One of the greatest gifts of psychedelics is how they reanimate the natural world, allowing us to perceive the subject, the spirit of all species, not just our own. And to feel a deeper sense of interconnectedness with nature.
Series: How to Change Your Mind

The Awakening: 1975

   2020    Culture
The series is a thorough examination of the infamous UFO cult through the eyes of its former members and loved ones. What started in 1975 with the disappearance of 20 people from a small town in Oregon, ended in 1997 with the largest suicide on US soil and changed the face of modern new age religion forever.
In the first episode, Bonnie Nettles and Marshall Applewhite begin to recruit individuals interested in end-of-the-world Christianity, new age religion, and UFOs - but the disappearance of new members soon drives media attention and family concerns.
Series: Heavens Gate

The Chrysalis

   2020    Culture
Bonnie and Marshall - 'Ti' and 'Do' turn to recording their lessons to teach their followers how to transcend, and the intense rule and check partner system is set-up. The renaming of the members, the haircuts, and the clothing style also are changed to fit an androgynous look.
When Ti is given a cancer diagnosis, the dynamic of the group changes. After Ti dies from cancer in 1985, a distraught Do briefly allows members to visit their families. When the members return, Do becomes more controlling.
Series: Heavens Gate

The Second Harvest

   2020    Culture
The message of the group begins to change and losing identity and group mentality is pushed. With more lockdowns and rules, longtime members of the group begin to question or leave. With no sex permitted with members, Dick Joslyn’s membership in the cult poses problem for Do... leading to a new request for the group.
With dwindling numbers, the group needs a new boost of membership. The Exit begins to be discussed as the Hale-Bopp Comet approaches.
Series: Heavens Gate

The Exit

   2020    Culture
The Hale-Bopp Comet is passing Earth and rumours of a mysterious object following the comet could mean the sign that the Heaven’s Gate community could be looking for. With plans for the Exit, the group members begin saying goodbye to the world. In the aftermath of the suicides, the world and the surviving former followers react.
Series: Heavens Gate

The Satanic Verses 30 Years On

   2019    Culture
The publication of Salman Rushdie's novel The Satanic Verses in 1988 sparked a culture war in Britain between those in the Muslim community, who considered the book blasphemous and called for the book to be banned, and those defending it as an expression of freedom of speech. Protests, which began in the north of England, soon spread across the UK and to the rest of the Islamic world, culminating in February 1989 with Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini issuing a fatwa - a death sentence on the writer.
Now, 30 years on, broadcaster and journalist Mobeen Azhar embarks on a journey, starting in his native Yorkshire where the protest first began, to examine the lasting effect the book has had on the Muslim community and how the events of 1989 continue to have an impact today.
Strangest Things

Strangest Things

2021  History
Prehistoric Planet

Prehistoric Planet

2022  Science
Big Oil vs The World

Big Oil vs The World

2022  Nature
Through the Wormhole

Through the Wormhole

2011  Science
Wild Russia

Wild Russia

2009  Nature
Minimalism

Minimalism

2015  Culture