I remember, you know, Hamilton him thinking about Peak. Alright, which for our listeners stands for p calls, an acronym for finishing liens. I have known and loved half of which is a semi-autobiographical love story about him and his wife Anne and his friends and their use of these substances that he's creating. And the other half is the recipes for I think dozens or hundreds of these substances. But I remember and I think it won't Point saying that he almost saw this as creating the recipe book for the sort of what might be the dark ages of the pharmacological Dark Ages. That might be lying ahead. I think when he got in a more sorrowful or depressed, mood about where things were heading. I mean, obviously things have turned around very differently and impact his influence has been enormous. But um, I also can see why he is for you, not just to Hero, but I guess a role model. I mean it seems to me in the way you present. Within the documentaries you've done and in the way you present yourself. It says same basic idea of wanting to talk to anybody that right. Yes.
Absolutely. And I think that, you know, part of his motivation and Publishing that was he was very terrified by the destruction of Wilhelm reich's research by the FDA in the 1940s. Because in the case of Wilhelm Reich, of course, it turned out that what he was doing was by all standards. Pseudoscience and the FDA said, okay. This is medically dangerous. We have to destroy this because it represents a threat to Public Health, but his feeling was well, couldn't somebody say exactly the same thing about the work that I'm doing, couldn't they say, you know, this is dangerous pseudoscience. These aren't therapeutic medicines. These aren't psychotherapeutic adjuncts. These are drugs and they're dangerous and they killed somebody. So we've got to, we've got to get rid of this stuff. It represents a threat to Public Health and he was afraid. That like Wilhelm Reich, his research could be destroyed. If the government decided that it was dangerous and part of the motivation for the publication of P call was to ensure that that could never be done. That his work couldn't be destroyed. I think that also motivated the digitization of his research, which was freely available on Erowid and remains freely available in Arrow, at least in terms of the chemistry. Why did he do that? Because he wanted it to be available to as many people as possible. He wanted to ensure that there was no way that Could be destroyed, just explain
for a moment, our audience about Wilhelm reich's research. What was that? About?
You know, I'm not an expert on Wilhelm Reich, but my understanding is that he was producing these things called or going accumulators which would treat a variety of different disorders, ranging, from cancer to frigidity, and you'd get into this box, and these things became quite popular with celebrities like William S Burroughs, you know, later William Steig as well. And you get into this box that I think Just like a little Shack with coils on the top of it. And the idea is that it would accumulate this imaginary substance called the organ. That would cure all diseases. So, this was in fact, pseudoscience and one could make a legitimate argument that the dissemination of this information was dangerous because of course, the selling faulty, cancer, cures or selling faulty treatments to desperate people is a perennial way, not only to make money, but to hurt people. So if you're running the FDA, Um, their perspective, it makes sense. This is dangerous. We've got to destroy this. But the whole problem with, you know, whether you're talking about the history of eugenics or genocide or psychosurgery. The problem is whenever we think we've figured out what the bad thing is and what we have to destroy. We often make a mistake and sometimes the bad thing that we're destroying, actually, isn't bad at all. And so I think shulgin was right to have that concern, you know, I think we can all imagine. Given the Caprices of world governments, how things can potentially go. I mean, they went pretty badly in this country for a long time. And, you know, they're still not doing all that great, but they're getting better. And given the Reagan Administration given all of these very restrictive laws that have been passed in the federal analog act for those that aren't familiar with. It was a very frightening development in the history of drug policy because in the past, there was something closer to what It exists in many other countries, where you have drugs that are legal that are uncontrolled and you have drugs that are illegal. They are controlled substances. What the federal analog act said was. Well, if you're selling a drug, that's substantially similar to a controlled substance that is in schedule 1 or schedule to. Then that's also a controlled substance, but the problem is substantially similar was never defined in a chemically meaningful met way. And so, Functional outcome, is that it put an enormous number of compounds into a gray area is 5 m, e0 DMT and analog of DMT. Well, apparently not because they felt the need to schedule. 5 m EO D, Mt. Separately from DMT, but I don't think anyone could meaningfully answer that question because the word analog isn't meaningful in any precise chemical sense. And so shulgin correctly recognized that this Is an enormous threat. This could render vast swathes of his research illegal without a single law being passed other than the federal analog act.
Terrified By the Destruction of Wilhelm Reich's Research, Alexander Shulgin Published 'PIKHAL'
Hamilton Morris on Pharmacological Creations, Myths & Heroes