The popularization of psychedelics has already transformed the American mind. As tripping becomes normalized and legal in the coming decade, the pace of change will only accelerate. There will be more openness to new ideas, both brilliant and insane. Commercial availability will also invigorate the market for synthetic religious experiences.
Having seen people gobble up hallucinogens in various contexts, I’m not particularly bothered by the substances themselves. The physical effects are negligible—fatality rates are basically zero—and many people derive real insight from their use. Certainly, a sizable minority become head-spun wackos, but compared to the utter devastation wrought by opiates, or even alcohol, it’s a peripheral concern.
What freaks me out is seeing bio-chemical divinity go mainstream. These fads make for interesting subcultures—generating elaborate art and hilarious stories—but could become monstrous in the hands of our current ruling class. Big Pharma’s track record is already abysmal, from the over-use of SSRI antidepressants to the ongoing opioid crisis.