A Note of the Successful Outcome of a Single Dose LSD Experience in a Patient
Suffering from Grand Mal Epilepsy
Gary Fisher, Ph.D.
We need people to share their experience with the entheogen to establish a network of support for the exploration once again of their powerful usefulness. The period of time in the 1950's and early 1960's was very short-lived and only the surface was touched as to the myriad of ways in which entheogens are truly self-actualization substances.
We do not need an extended cultural revolution to occur. We need a community of thoughtful individuals to communicate their experience with the entheogens so that a vision for a humanistic society can evolve. This case is presented as it is remarkable in the changes that occurred in one man's life from a single LSD session.
The session was conducted according to the "psychedelic" model which briefly involves a few necessary components: 1) pure LSD when the dosages are reliable; 2) a "set and setting" which has adequately been described in the literature where the intention of the voyager is to see through to the end the uncovering of all the impediments and blockages to his realizing his full potential regardless of the terror in confronting these blockages; 3) a setting which consists of a safe environment created by the sitters, who through their own psychedelic experiences are well versed in how to assist an individual through the painful emotional turmoil of dealing with life-long trauma; and 4) adequate high dosage so that the ego has less opportunity to fight for control over its known realities so that he can break through to the ultimate actualities.
The present case is that of a man in his mid-twenties who had a long history of grand mal, who was on medication for the disorder which only partially controlled his seizures. After only one LSD experience he was free of this condition. He had a life-long symbiotic relationship with his mother. A symbiotic relationship is typically between mother and child and consists of a state of consciousness of both individuals which is undifferentiated. There has been a lack of ego development of both individuals and neither person has a sense of his separate identity. They are bonded in identity with each other and essentially share one "person." Both mother and son had confirmed diagnoses of grand mal epilepsy by EEG tests.
During the session the man had multiple seizures and experienced intense emotional distress in that separating from his mother required his "dying" - the death of a consciousness he had had all his life. These seizures and his panic went on for several hours until he was able to let go and experience the death of his symbiotic identity.
The next day he told his therapist what he had experienced - and that he knew he was free of his old identity with mother and that he would never have seizures again. He said he had terminated his medication. His therapist directed him to have an EEG exam, which he did, and he no longer had a grand mal pattern.
He never experienced another seizure and set about learning how to live as a separate person.
This case study is reported in the spirit of demonstrating the remarkable growth that can occur from a single LSD session. It is not suggested that someone with grand mal epilepsy take street acid and discontinue their medication. Having a successful outcome from an LSD session is a very complicated phenomenon and involves all of the elements described earlier in this note: Courage, determination and centeredness of all parties are crucial for successful outcomes.