Our mission at the Exploring Psychedelics Conference at SOU is to
present diverse and accurate information about psychedelics concerning
their roles in art, music, culture, spirituality, religion, science,
medicine, and health and healing. Our aim is to bring together local
experts and practitioners in the field, community members, and invited
speakers to investigate the many ways that psychedelics are valued and
utilized historically and in the modern world.
Due to the "War on Drugs," hysteria, misinformation, and propaganda largely demonized psychedelic substances, with the result that the majority were made illegal around the world. Now that the War on Drugs has largely been determined to be a complete policy failure, resulting in massive numbers of otherwise law-abiding and productive citizens being incarcerated, cultural and political attitudes around psychedelics are starting to shift. Psychedelic research has begun a new renaissance around the world, with new studies showing up on a regular basis showing the vast therapeutic potential of psychedelics. Court cases, such as the landmark Santo Daime case in Ashland, Oregon, in 2009 has made the religious consumption of ayahuasca legal in the state of Oregon. Historians, Religion scholars, and Anthropologists are concluding that the evidence indicates that psychedelics and mind-altering substances have been a part of human cultures, religions, and traditions since the dawn of human history. The time to re-evaluate these powerful substances has arrived.
At the Exploring Psychedelics Conference at SOU, we aim to bring all these, and many other, issues to light, where they can be discussed in an atmosphere of academic honesty, intellectual freedom, and scientific rigor.
This is a free and open event, welcoming students, academics, spiritual and religious practitioners, community members, scientists, policy makers, public figures, artists, musicians, writers, and event organizers.