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Alert: The Oregon Psilocybin Services Section is Hiring (Compliance Specialists) – Updated Close Date11/15/2022

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Good afternoon, 

The Oregon Psilocybin Services Section (OPS) is excited to announce that we are hiring! 

We are currently recruiting for four Compliance Specialists to provide consultation, compliance review, regulatory decisions, technical assistance, and evaluation services for the Oregon Psilocybin Services Licensing and Compliance Program. Compliance Specialists will verify that licensed manufacturers, facilitators, service centers, and testing laboratories are in compliance with program requirements as stipulated by statute, administrative rules, policies and procedures, and interpretive guidelines. The position will be developing and evaluating OPS’s Training program, Licensing and Compliance (TLC) system as well as OPS’s product tracking system. See the job announcement below. 

OPS is a new section housed within the Oregon Health Authority Public Health Division’s Center for Health Protection. The OPS Section will implement Ballot Measure 109, which was passed in November 2020 and directs the Oregon Health Authority to license and regulate the manufacturing, transportation, delivery, sale, and purchase of psilocybin products and the provision of psilocybin services. 

Complete job descriptions and application details are available on the Oregon Job Opportunities Workday page. Please share this job announcement with your networks or with anyone who would be interested in this work. 

With gratitude,
The Oregon Psilocybin Services Team
www.oregon.gov/psilocybin

Oregon Psilocybin Services Compliance Specialist (Compliance Specialist 2) – 4 positions

REQ-112050
Salary: $4,259 – $6,528
Close date (updated): 11/20/2022
Location: Portland, OR (Hybrid)
 

The Oregon Health Authority (OHA), Public Health Division (PHD), Center for Health Protection (CHP), Oregon Psilocybin Services Program in Portland, OR is recruiting for four Oregon Psilocybin Services Compliance Specialists to provide consultation, compliance review, regulatory decisions, technical assistance, and evaluation services for the Oregon Psilocybin Services Licensing and Compliance Program to verify that licensed manufacturers, facilitators, service centers, and testing laboratories are in compliance with program requirements as stipulated by statute, administrative rules, policies and procedures, and interpretive guidelines.

These positions are full-time, permanent classified positions which are represented by a union. 

The Oregon Health Authority strategic goal is to end all health inequities by 2030.

OHA values health equity, service excellence, integrity, leadership, partnership, innovation, and transparency. OHA’s health equity definition is “Oregon will have established a health system that creates health equity when all people can reach their full potential and well-being and are not disadvantaged by their race, ethnicity, language, disability, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, social class, intersections among these communities or identities, or other socially determined circumstances. Achieving health equity requires the ongoing collaboration of all regions and sectors of the state, including tribal governments to address: the equitable distribution or redistributing of resources and power; and recognizing, reconciling, and rectifying historical and contemporary injustices.” OHA’s 10-year goal is to eliminate health inequities. Click here, to learn more about OHA’s mission, vision, and core values. 

What will you do?

As an Oregon Psilocybin Services Compliance Specialist, you will perform the following duties:

  1. Ensure Oregonians who meet eligibility criteria have access to safe, effective psilocybin products and psilocybin services.
  2. Ensure overall safety of our communities by identifying and interpreting law, rule or policies related to a licensee meeting compliance criteria, focusing on product and client safety.
  3. Interpret state statutes, rules and regulations for psilocybin licensures, training programs, and the provision of psilocybin services.
  4. Inspect manufacturers, service centers, and testing lab sites for licensure approval and with facilitators as appropriate.
  5. Evaluate licensed sites for ongoing compliance with state and administrative requirements.
  6. Evaluate and investigate complaints by researching information and analyzing conditions regarding psilocybin products and provision of psilocybin services for statutory and administrative rules compliance.
  7. Assist with application evaluations and change requests.
  8. Assess citations, revocations, and assessment of civil penalties according to compliance and licensing program policies and procedures. 

Working Conditions
These positions support a hybrid work environment. These positions are held in both the licensing and compliance team in Oregon Psilocybin Services Section. The work in the compliance team would entail conducting site inspection and some potential visits to the home office located at the Portland State Office Building, 800 NE Oregon St, Portland, OR 97232.

What’s in it for you?
The Public Health Division is a team of passionate individuals working to promote health across the lifespan of individuals, families, and communities. We value and support unique perspectives using a trauma-informed approach and aim to reflect these values in our hiring practices, professional development, and workplace.  We are committed to racial equity as a driving factor to improve health outcomes for all communities that experience inequities. 

We offer full medical, vision and dental benefits with paid sick leave, vacation, personal leave and 10 paid holidays per year plus pension and retirement plans. If you are an experienced compliance specialist with experience determining health licensing eligibility and compliance, don’t delay! Apply today! 

What are we looking for?

Minimum Requirements
Four years of experience doing administrative research that included compiling and evaluating facts to recommend management action or decide compliance with program guidelines and regulations. Two of the four years must be above the technical support level which means you had the authority to make independent decisions about course of action.
OR
An associate degree AND two and a half years of experience doing administrative research that included compiling and evaluating facts to recommend management action or decide compliance with program guidelines and regulations.
OR
A bachelor’s degree AND one year of experience doing administrative research that included compiling and evaluating facts to recommend management action or decide compliance with program guidelines and regulations.

Requested Skills

  1. Preference will be given to applicants who are bilingual in both English/Spanish and can speak, read and write in both languages.
  2. Experience explaining, interpreting, and applying rules, laws, and statutes appropriately which requires knowledge of Oregon Revised Statutes and Oregon Administrative Rules.
  3. Experience explaining complex technical and regulatory information in an understandable and culturally aware manner to people of diverse backgrounds and lived experience.
  4. Experience interviewing people to gather information, taking notes, conducting fact-finding research, writing detailed reports, and documenting information within an electronic system.
  5. Experience determining eligibility for regulatory compliance programs.
  6. Experience evaluating, investigating, and documenting complaints.
  7. Experience preparing compliance reports and other necessary documents.
  8. Must demonstrate strong communication skills, including active listening, clearly articulating technical requirements and guidance using advanced verbal and written communication skills.
  9. Experience creating and maintaining a work environment that is respectful and accepting of diversity among team members and the people we serve.
  10. Proficiency in Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Teams, SharePoint, web editing and desktop publishing software, and databases.
  11. Current driver’s license with clean driving record as frequent travel is required throughout Oregon.

The Oregon Health Authority is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer committed to workforce diversity and anti-racism.

External Link: https://oregon.wd5.myworkdayjobs.com/SOR_External_Career_Site/job/Portland–OHA–Oregon-Street/Oregon-Psilocybin-Services-Compliance-Specialist–Compliance-Specialist-2—-4-positions_REQ-112050 

If you need assistance to participate in the application process, including an accommodation request under the American with Disabilities Act contact: Cyndi Phipps-Roman at cynthia.phipps-roman@oha.oregon.gov.



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Everything You Need to Know About Psilocybin Mushrooms and Mushroom Drugs

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Psilocybin mushrooms and other mushroom drugs are trending big time. Whether it’s a new decriminalization or a recent study to come out, we keep hearing about the many wellness benefits and increased access to shrooms. Granted, there are still no consumer products available, but the fact that laws are beginning to loosen up is a positive sign in and of itself. Scroll down to learn everything you need to know about psilocybin mushrooms.

What are Psilocybin Mushrooms? 

Psilocybin is the main psychedelic compound in mushrooms and truffles. It’s a basic tryptamine hallucinogen, with properties similar to lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and mescaline, although the chemical structure is different. Research shows a common mechanism of action through serotonergic (5-HT) pathways. Psilocybin is a strong agonist at 5-HT receptors which are located within the thalamus and cortex of the brain. 

The onset of hallucinogenic effects typically kicks in around 20 to 40 minutes after consumption, and they last up to 6 hours. Psilocybin’s threshold for intoxication is approximately 40 mcg/kg of body weight. In wild mushrooms with lower levels of psilocybin, this translates to about 2 grams, although some people use up to 4 grams for a good psychedelic trip.  

Psilocybin was first isolated by Swiss chemist Albert Hoffmann in 1958, using the Psilocybe Mexicana mushroom species from Central America. Psilocybin is found in both wild and cultivated mushrooms, although just like with cannabis, cultivated mushrooms tend to be more potent. Through cross-breeding, cultivated mushrooms can have up to 10 times higher levels of psilocybin than wild species.  


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Other Types of Psychedelic Mushrooms 

There are many different strains of psilocybin mushrooms, which are the more popular of the psychedelic mushroom varieties. Another type that’s been of growing interest are Amanita muscaria. Amanita muscaria, often referred to as the fly agaric or fly amanita, is a member of the Basidiomycota family of fungi, of the genus Amanita.  

This mushroom species gets its common name from its ability to attract and kill flies and possibly, mosquitos. The fly agaric is native to the temperate and boreal regions of the Northern Hemisphere including Europe, North America, and Siberia/Northern Asia. It’s a highly adaptable mushrooms species that can now be found throughout the world, and it’s closely tied to various deciduous and coniferous trees, commonly found growing under birch and pine. Amanita muscaria mushrooms have round, often dome-shaped, red caps with white spots and white gills.  

They are without a doubt one of the most recognizable of the toadstool mushroom species. You can spot Amanita muscaria mushrooms in the Mario franchise games, the Alice in Wonderland mushroom scene, and many other cartoons and animated games. Although they have many features that make them easily discernible from other mushroom varieties, there are several known subspecies of Amanita muscaria, some more potent/toxic than others.  

In classic psychedelics like psilocybin/shrooms, mescaline, and LSD, the active compounds interact with our serotonin and/or dopamine neurotransmitters, which are 5-HT2A agonists. In A. muscaria, the psychoactive ingredients are muscimol and ibotenic acid. Muscimol activates the major inhibitory neurotransmitter system, gamma amino butyric acid (GABA). As an inhibitory system, muscimol works by suppressing the activity of neurons in the brain.  

Ibotenic acid is a neurotoxin and agonist of glutamate receptors, specifically at both the N-methyl-D-aspartate, or NMDA, and trans-ACPD receptor sites. Neurotoxins interrupt communication between neurons across a synapse, changing the way the nervous system functions. Ibotenic acid is a secondary metabolite that converts to muscimol via decarboxylation.  

While that may sound pretty intense, people who use these mushrooms compare the feeling to being drunk, but with a bit more of a curious and psychedelic vibe to it. The muscimol in these mushrooms can produce feelings of euphoria, hallucinations, muscle jerks, drowsiness, sweating, pupil dilation, and increased body temperature. 

Research and Legality  

In the United States, use of psychedelic mushrooms has been illegal since the Controlled Substances Act was implemented in 1970. Since then, clinical studies have pretty much ceased, but recreational use definitely has not.  

However, in 1992, the National Institute on Drug Abuse linked up with an FDA advisory team to revamp research efforts of psychedelic agents – albeit extremely limited research. In 1993, the Heffter Research Institute in New Mexico was founded. It’s one of the only institutes in the world the is entirely dedicated to uncovering the medical benefits of psychedelic compounds found in nature. Despite these developments, psilocybin is still banned in the U.S. 

psilocybin mushrooms and mushroom drugs

Around the world, novel and alternative treatments for mental illnesses becoming increasingly sought after, new resources are being aimed at age-old therapies including cannabis, ketamine, mescaline, and psilocybin. Dr. George R. Greer, co-founder and president of the Heffter Research Institute, “Our mission is two-fold: one to do research that helps us understand the mind, the brain, how all that works, and number two, to help reduce suffering through therapeutic use of psychedelics.” 

Dosing and Fostering a Good Trip 

Defined simply, or if you look up the term in an online dictionary, a “trip” can be described as a “temporarily altered state of consciousness”. This is accurate, but an incredibly lackluster explanation for something that can be transcendental and life-changing for many people. A “temporarily altered state of consciousness” can technically be achieved through the use of any drug that produces a “high”. Even sleeping puts you in a “temporarily altered state of consciousness”.  

But psychedelic trips are different – they’re more sentient in nature. Trips can vary greatly in intensity, but they generally make you feel something. Psychedelics affect all the senses and can change a person’s thought process, and their sense of time, space and reality. They are known to produce auditory, visual, and sensory hallucinations; however, some users experience no hallucinations at all, but rather a sense of general well-being, connectivity, and euphoria. Numerous factors make tripping a very subjective experience.  

Dosing (which can range from microdoses that are less than 0.5 grams, to “heroic” doses that are 5 grams or more) and other elements can significantly impact a psychedelic trip, so you want to make sure that you’re doing everything possible to guarantee an uplifting and beneficial high.  

Although a psychedelic trip can be achieved via meditation, sensory-deprivation, light therapy, and a handful of other methods; the easiest and most common ways to achieve this state of mind is through the use of psychedelic drugs. Psychedelic drugs, also referred to entheogens, are a subset of hallucinogens which contain compounds that can alter perception. The term entheogens come from Greek and can be roughly translated to mean “building the God within”.  

To utilize these compounds to their full potential, a few things need to be kept in mind, all of which largely have to do with a concept known in the psychonaut world as ‘set and setting’. Set refers to your state of mind, while setting describes the environment of your trip. Psychologist and author, Timothy Leary, could not emphasize it more… “set and setting are of utmost importance when it comes to having a happy and therapeutic psychedelic trip,” he says. 

Risk of Addiction and Overdose 

Psilocybin mushrooms and other mushroom drugs have a very low potential of both addiction and overdose. As a matter of fact, recent studies confirm that only 0.2% of magic mushroom users seek emergency medical care after use… the lowest of any recreational drug, including cannabis. A psilocybin “overdose”, or a bad trip rather, can lead to various psychological symptoms, the primary one being very intense panic attacks.    

One risk when eating magic mushrooms, especially if you’re foraging for them yourself, is picking the wrong type. Given that there are over 14,000 different mushroom species in the world, it’s easy to conclude that some many have very similar characteristics – making them hard to tell apart in real life situations. Eating a poisonous mushroom can be fatal, so that’s definitely something you’ll want to be very careful about. 

It’s also important to keep in mind that there is a big difference between an overdose and a bad trip. Some people might mistake the two, but they are fundamentally different. The main contrast between the two is that overdoses are physical and bad trips are mental. Overdoses can be fatal, whereas bad trips are mostly just scary and confusing.  

That distinction is extremely important, because it really highlights the sheer insanity of keeping psychedelic drugs illegal. How are drugs like Oxycontin and other opioids (which kill an average of 44 people per day in the U.S.) legal with prescriptions, while psychedelics that are considerably safer remain prohibited? 

Psilocybin for Depression 

Although there are many possible uses for psilocybin, at the moment, it’s most frequently used to treat conditions relating to mental health. Depression and anxiety are among the most researched indications for psilocybin treatment.

“There’ve been some promising preliminary results in such areas such as the treatment of overwhelming depression and existential anxiety in people who are facing the end of life, who have diagnoses of advanced-stage cancer,” Dr. Charles Grob, professor of psychiatry at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, stated in an interview with Healthline. “The thing that we have the most evidence for is cancer-related depression and anxiety. That seems really strong, and I’d be surprised if those results didn’t hold up,” he added.

Another possible use for psychedelic mushrooms is in the cessation of smoking, drinking, and other addictions. In a small pilot study conducted at Johns Hopkins University, people who partook in psilocybin therapy successfully abstained from smoking cigarettes over the following 12-month period.

“The general idea is that the nature of these disorders is a narrowed mental and behavioral repertoire,” says Matthew Johnson, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavior Sciences at John Hopkins. “So, in well-orchestrated sessions, there is the ability to essentially shake someone out of their routine to give a glimpse of a larger picture and create a mental plasticity with which people can step outside of those problems.”

Final Thoughts

In the coming years, we can expect to see more research and legalizations coming in the realm of psilocybin mushrooms and mushrooms drugs. Remember to subscribe to our newsletter to learn more, and to be update as soon as new products become available.

Hello and welcome readers! We appreciate you making it over to Cannadelics.com; where we work hard everyday to bring you fully-rounded coverage of the growing cannabis and psychedelics spectrumHang out with us regularly to keep up with everything going on, and sign up for the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter, so you’re never late on getting a story.





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My Experience: Taking Magic Mushrooms in Goa

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If there’s one place on Earth where magic mushrooms are meant to be consumed it is the sun-kissed, stretched out beaches of Goa. With palm trees hanging over you like an omnibenevolent presence, the sea glinting for what seems like forever, the sky bluer than you’ve ever seen and, of course, the sound of light trance music comfortably guiding you into a meditative state – is there anywhere better to enjoy a psychedelic trip?

Whilst the south Indian state of Goa had its hallucinogenic hayday in the 60s and 70s, this does not mean that the place has completely lost its charm and soul. Drugs are not as easy to find as they were back then and the party scene has definitely become more commercialized, but when I was offered magic mushrooms by a green-haired lady who looked like a character from a Studio Ghibli movie, I knew I couldn’t let the opportunity pass. Maybe this was the chance to experience what the hippie paradise used to be like. This is the story of how I took magic mushrooms in Goa. 

Goa

Goa is one of the 25 districts that exists within the incredibly diverse and huge nation of India. It is the 7th largest country in the world, with the second biggest population. Whilst most know India for its temples, mountains, deserts and spiritual getaways, there is also another reality. This reality is, in essence, Goa. A coastal district in the south of the country, which still has the remnants of its Portuguese colonial past.

This place has some of the best food in the entirety of India, has beaches that stretch for miles and, significantly, had a large part to play in the 60s hippie trail. This was a gigantic journey around the globe that many westerners took in the 1960s – mostly with only a VW van, some light luggage and some great friends. It was a right of passage, a chance to see the world after generations of conflict. The trip for many started in London, went through Europe, into the Middle East and deep into Asia.


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This was, for many, where it ended; others boated over to Australia. Goa was like the promised land, the light at the end of the road. Those who’d managed to get that far would sleep in beach shacks, live in peace and enjoy all types of mind-altering substances. Duncan Cambell writes about his experiences in the Guardian:

“It was possible to live for months on a few quid. A bed in a shared bedroom could be secured for six rupees a night. “Imagine no possessions” was a creed as well as a line in a John Lennon song. Fresh fish, coconut rice. Paperback copies of Hermann Hesse and Rabindranath Tagore, William Burroughs and the Bhagavad Gita were swapped… Disconnection from the west was complete”

The question people seem to ask when they wander around Goa now is: is this still a paradise or is it a paradise lost? In other words, has its time passed? It is often irritating being told by older generations how much better life was in their day. An image of an old man, sitting in his armchair, reading a copy of Nietzsche comes to mind, saying: “back in my day, no one sat around looking at their screens, they would read books and explore the world”. Well maybe Goa was better in the 60s, but at least we have better healthcare, eh? 

Goa now still has its long beaches and palm trees, but they are no longer empty. The majority of the beaches in the North and South are full of resorts and thousands of tourists, many of them more interested in taking the perfect Instagram photo rather than learning about the culture. However, not all hope is lost. The soul of a place cannot be eradicated, but it can be led astray. One writer exemplifies this perfect: 

“While Goa today may not exude the carefree nature of the early 1970s when it was a hub for hedonistic Hippies from around the world, much of the culture that sprung the movement still remains in pockets.”

That is why when I was offered the chance to take magic mushrooms on a Goan beach I simply could not say no. It would be a disrespect to my ancestors. 

Magic Mushrooms in Goa

The drug scene in Goa is certainly different in 2022 from what it was back in the ‘glory years’. Many substances were easily available in the 70s due to a lack of police authority – hashish, LSD and basically anything else. In fact, it wasn’t until the mid 1970s that the majority of recreational drugs were deemed illegal by the government, before that they were accepted. Now, of course, all common drugs are banned and dealt with harshly. You may have to bribe a police officer 100,000 rupees if caught or be put in prison. Many of Goa’s best and most beloved clubs – including Curly’s and Hill Top – have recently been closed down due to drug controversy. Goan authorities are on a dogged mission to end the reputation of the beach district as a substance tourist spot. 

However, whilst I was in Goa it was still possible to find drugs. In the north beach of Arambol it was possible to slyly find hashish or some dodgy meth that was being disguised as cocaine. However, it wasn’t what I had imagined. I dreamt of a chilled shack that sold shroom shakes and hash, but instead I found myself in a dark alleyway and could feel the fear in the dealer’s eyes; being caught by the police being a terrible threat. The India Times writes:

“In the last seven months, Goa police has seized around 100kg of narcotic substances worth over Rs 2.5 croce. Goa police have not only arrested Goans in the trade but also people from outside the state and foreigners… Ganja, caracas, LSD, MDMA, ecstasy tablets and powder, cocaine, hashish oil, heroin and cannabis are among the drugs that have been seized.”

In essence, this wasn’t what I had really been expecting. However, hope was not lost. A few weeks into my trip I was visited by an elder Indian Canadian woman with striking green hair. She was incredibly warm and comforting, I felt like I’d known her my entire life. She approached me at a beach bar in Ashwem and we got chatting. Her line of work was rather extraordinary. She lived in Goa and worked as toad venom shaman; helping people through their trip. I told her my ambition to try psychedelics whilst in Goa and within 30 minutes she’d sold me 10 grams of magic mushrooms. After that she sort of disappeared into the etha, never to be seen again. 

The Trip

I was in Goa with my girlfriend and we were pretty overjoyed that we’d finally managed to find hallucinogens. The next step was to ensure our set and setting were perfect – we didn’t want any bad vibes to ruin our trip. We decided to take them early – 3pm – this way we’d be able to have dinner in the evening and enjoy a chilled sleep. Although, we managed to buy some valium at the pharmacy just in case we found sleep difficult.

We divided the mushrooms into 2 grams each and found a perfect shaded spot on the beach. We didn’t want to overdo the amount – I mean, they looked like liberty caps but how can you ever be sure? A magic mushroom trip usually lasts around 4-6 hours, with the peak coming at around 3 hours in, which we hoped would bring us to the beautiful Goan sunset at around 6pm. 

Then we ate. They tasted awful but we washed them down with a beer. It had been a few years since my last psychedelic trip so I was full of nerves, but I was actively telling myself to simply allow the experience to happen. My intention for the trip was: to see the beauty in everything. To be honest, I realise in hindsight that this intention was a little vague. Anyway, it was hot, very hot. Within 30 minutes I decided to go into the sea to refresh but as I walked back to the sun beds everything went strange. The beach stretched out for miles and everything sounded different; enhanced.

My body was heavier than it had ever been and I felt like I needed to sit down. The trip had begun. With magic mushrooms you often can’t quite work out why you feel a certain way, which is why it took us maybe another 30 minutes before we finally realized that it was the heat that was making our bodies feel so tired. We decided to walk back to our hostel. On the way back everything felt wavey and technicolor, and each interaction with another human felt like a video game. We tried to buy water from a shop owner and it felt like we had some sort of secret. 

The peak of the trip happened in our air conditioned room. We showered probably around 10 times each just because of how good the water felt on our skin. We cried, we had moments alone, we had moments together. An entire lifetime happened in that wavey, orange room. Nothing and everything had the space to occur. It was only when the visuals began to subside slightly that we felt able to go and see the sunset on the beach.

The trip was on its way down but one overriding sense remained: beauty. The world was beautiful. The people, the sunset; everything. We enjoyed some deliciously tasty food – enhanced by the shrooms – and watched as the sunset turned to stars. Whilst the trip was no longer at its peak, we were refreshed, rid of our anxieties and issues. All there was left was to allow the world to truly be its spectacular self in front of our eyes. 

Final Thoughts

Had we found old Goa? Of course not. You cannot recreate the past and you’ll spend your life disappointed if you try. However, we’d found our own version of Goa. Whilst the overriding sun may have caused us to spend a great deal of the trip inside our hostel room, it didn’t stop the experience from being wonderful.

My intention had been to see the beauty in the world and it certainly had worked. I felt clarity. One of the reasons why psilocybin is now being explored as a therapeutic substance is due to this exact experience – people report feeling happier and clearer for months after a psychedelic trip. If I ever return to Goa I hope I will one day meet that green-haired, studio Ghibli character again but – if not – I will simply write it here: thank you.

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The best NYC museums to visit after tripping or toking

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You’ll never see art and science the same again.


If you’ve walked down any busy block in the five boroughs lately, you’ll smell weed in the air, and probably catch someone who’s either lighting up or poised to offer you a gram or two. While weed is legal in New York, government-regulated sales are not slated to start until the end of the year.  Still, no one is stopping the ganjapreneurs from cashing in and serving the public. The bodegas, weed trucks, and not-really-legal storefronts are multiplying, and the city has tentatively sanctioned cannabis consumption in outdoor spaces.

Amid the city’s post-Thanksgiving holiday cheer, locals and tourists alike often feel the itch to visit the city’s roughly 100 museums, which cover everything from indigenous history, to Lower East Side tenements, to ice cream. 

With legal cannabis sales just a few weeks away in New York, I wanted to find the best centers of history and learning that pair well with dome dispensary edibles, craft cannabis, and maybe some special mushrooms you picked up from a local provider. I can say with certainty, these were my favorite museums to visit after tripping and toking.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

One of my favorite things about weed and psychedelics is that they make the borders of our reality more permeable. Time no longer passes as it usually does, gravity shifts, and history becomes an experience that we can inhabit. 

The Met always presents guests with a prism of a different time and a world seen through different eyes. This is an ideal pairing with cannabis edibles, a thought-provoking sativa, or some psilocybin. I’d argue all the current exhibits suit a little bit of shrooms, but the zaniest ones available now are Chroma: Ancient Sculptures in Color, where ancient Greek marble statues get the color treatment, and Kimono Style, which traces the evolution of the kimono garment.  

The Met also hosts the Cloisters, an homage to medieval artwork and architecture that feels like a palace you’d encounter in the Game of Thrones universe. There are gardens, castle towers, and halls built for the booming voices of choirs and kings. If you’re feeling trippy, might I recommend you stay outside with the greenery, lest you begin to worry the High Sparrow is after you.

Museum of the Moving Image  

Now this museum is NOT for beginners. I repeat, if you are not prepared for a bombardment of moving images, colors, characters, and existential crises, just go without any sort of intoxicating substance. Because wow, I was not ready. 
But, I loved it! The MoMI is a multistory, intentionally-unassuming building in Queens dedicated to all things cinema craft. The heart of the museum is easily the Jim Henson exhibit, which traverses the prolific puppeteer, animator, producer, and inventor’s decades of work on Sesame Street, Labyrinth, Fraggle Rock, and more.

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There is literally a quaint movie theater within the exhibit. I wasn’t so much in touch with my inner child as having her sit on my shoulders and run me through the whole thing. There are also temporary exhibits about Barry Jenkins’ The Underground Railroad, and most recently, a Walking Dead deep dive, which admittedly scares me.

Brooklyn Museum

There is always something good happening at the Brooklyn Museum. Their ongoing collection hosts art from societies across the continents, from Egypt to Polynesia to the First Nations. Further up, there are temporary exhibits that are just as fascinating as they are devastating: an interactive COVID memorial and a sprawling ruminating on how our everyday trash is, like, ruining the planet. Some pieces look like kaleidoscopes of tampon applicators, single-use flossers, and abandoned lighters, so something that incites visuals is the move.     
But the need-to-see show right now is definitely Virgil Abloh: “Figures of Speech,” a walk-through of the late Louis Vuitton creative director and designer’s forays into fashion, design, and architecture. There are well over 100 items, from his clothing collection inspired by the migrant crisis, a spectrum of his Off White shoe designs, and an entire wooden cabin meant to foster the creativity of Black artists while protecting them from the rigidity of white supremacy ideals.

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I’ve not been in a financial position to own a piece of Virgil’s legacy, but the vision in his work is only undercut by how much it seemed like he had to show us. The new Thierry Mugler: Couturissime exhibit just opened as well to further your passion for fashion.

Museum of Natural History

Definitely start in the elephant room. It’s technically the hall for African mammals, but the elephants are the stars. I myself popped one of the new Kiva Grape Pie Cookies gummies, a partnership with Brooklyn rapper Saint Jhn, and felt overwhelming awe at just how many other species have evolved across the globe alongside us, or far from our urban experiences. Where else would you ever see the skeletons of Chihuahua-sized lemurs or enormous salamanders? The Museum of Natural History, naturally. 

I went specifically for the new Sharks exhibit, which I heard multiple young children describe as “scary.” It’s a darkly lit room full of shark trivia, interactive games, and shark recreations (no great white tanks, sorry!) that you can detour to, then get back to the animal kingdom. I would not do any psychedelics if you plan to check out the halls of American Indian history, which feature somewhat uncanny recreations of people and their cultures who are still very much alive. But you do you.               

The Tenement Museum

Admittedly, the SNL sketches are a lot funnier than learning about thousands of European immigrants living in poverty; I would recommend this if you want to feel sad when you’re high and enjoy an emotional purge. The Lower East Side often feels like a millennial playground or a collection of furtive alleys, but one guided tour of the Tenement museum will make you feel very happy about the cramped apartment I’m betting you have lived in, at some point. 

As a descendant of immigrants from multiple European countries, but none of them went through Ellis Island or lived in New York. I used to feel somewhat jealous of all the thousands of people who got to reshape their lives in the Big Apple, until I walked through the squalor they had to deal with on a daily basis. This is definitely an indica, introspective kind of day, for feeling sympathy and gratitude that we have developed as a city and country beyond these circumstances.       

The Guggenheim

Museums often feel stuffy, and their architecture can feel monotonous. The Guggenheim, which reminds me of something straight out of Westworld’s latest season, sets you up in a spiraling circle, allowing you to get into a flowstate as you survey the best of an 8,000 piece collection.

The people watching alone can eat up an entire afternoon, but if you’ve got a nice microdose buzz going, I highly recommend the Cecilia Vicuña: Spin Spin Triangulene and Sensory Poetics: Collecting Abstraction exhibitions. Both toy with artistic medium as much as some mushroom chocolate toys with your perception. Both exhibits center on contemporary art that rejects our cultural reverence for minimalism and clearly understood messaging. Colors, shapes, and senses abound!

The New Museum

Sometimes you need some nastiness in life to remember how good it can be. But sometimes the grotesque has its own beauty and allure.   Doreen Lynette Garner’s new show at the New Museum, Revolted, makes you queasy in the best way and leads to deep interrogation.

Her sculptures seem like they’re meant to be in Dexter’s clean-up room or a negligent slaughterhouse. Everything is made from mostly synthetic materials, but the sculptures evoke the ick of live, fleshy bodies all the same. It might be best not to see this exhibit if you have a sensitive stomach or like to dose or smoke heavily     

SPYSCAPE

Ever wonder what kind of spy you’d be? That’s half the fun of SPYSCAPE, a Midtown Manhattan building that takes you through a series of mental and physical games that help determine your best spy skills while helping you learn about international surveillance and the history of espionage. 

There’s also a Batmobile or two. My friends and I made sure to chief beforehand, and while it made the math portions harder, it definitely made everything feel more 007. All important spy skills will be put to the test here—cracking ciphers, lie detection, surveillance monitoring, and sneaking through a room full of lasers, to name a few. There are, unfortunately, geometry questions too. Each phase takes you through different parts of the museum, so it doesn’t get stale.    

At the end, you receive an analysis detailing your role in a hypothetical intelligence agency. I myself got “analyst,” which seemingly means I’m great at seeing patterns and reviewing data, but maybe I don’t take as many risks as I should.  


All these visits were done under ideal tripping and toking circumstances; I had control of my dose and experience without adverse effects that can arise—cannabis and psychedelics aren’t exact science, after all. If you want to take your next museum visit to the next level, always start low and go slow. You just might see something you’ve never seen before.

Amelia Williams's Bio Image

Amelia Williams

New York-based freelance cannabis journalist Amelia Williams is a graduate of San Francisco State University’s journalism program, and a former budtender. Williams has contributed to the San Francisco Chronicle’s GreenState, MG Magazine, Culture Magazine, and Cannabis Now, Kirkus Reviews, and The Bold Italic.

View Amelia Williams’s articles





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