The Influence of LSD on Unconscious Activity
By Eisner, BG
From The Proceedings of the Quarterly Meeting of the Royal Medico-
Psychological Association 1961

Reviewed by Alex Pearlstein

This papers opening paragraph contains the line "LSD and related agents appear to be research tools far beyond present day conception - even the conception of us who have been working with them for years." I found this to be a great introduction to the observations of this well versed researcher. She clearly identifies the positive affects of LSD upon resolving issues of mental illness where the patient can gain a clearer perspective of their lives and the factors causing problems within their lives. To quote directly from the text "..the almost miraculous way in which human dynamics are laid bare and the levels of consciousness become available to scrutiny."

This paper also contains a line I have read in many other research papers on the topic of LSD. It, like so many others, suggests that the best methodology for understanding the practical application of this drug and its therapeutic qualities is personal experience. For it will help aid in the relationship between doctor and instrument as well as Doctor and patient. Without personal understanding of its effects there will be a communication barrier that could complicate therapy or understanding the responses of the patient.

Another common point in this paper that I have observed in others is how "treatment" is described. It seems that most of the papers that boasted the best results had the same methodologies applied. This typical treatment mostly revolved around the idea of the patients problems resolved via self-realization and resolution, with the therapist playing the role of lifeguard. The therapist's presence is to assist talking through issues when the patient requested, but mostly the patient would enter a state of clear rationalization looking at themselves and problems almost as a third person. This externalization of the issues at hand helped the patient to make a more rational analysis of their behavior and how to correct it.

If you wish to read the entire paper on the Erowid site, click here. Here one may
read an abstract if available. To read the entire paper, click on full text in the
black box on the left-hand side. If you do not have a rapid server, it may take
some time for the PDF article to come up.

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