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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Carl Sagan: Renowned Astronomer, Astrophysicist, Author, and... Avid Pot Smoker

We all know Carl Sagan was one of the most brilliant minds of the 20th century.  What is lesser known is that he was quite the stoner, and an advocate for the legalization of marijuana.  What follows is an excerpt from an essay he wrote (under a pseudonym) about marijuana.

 

Mr. X by Carl Sagan



        It all began about ten years ago. I had reached a considerably more relaxed period in my life – a time when I had come to feel that there was more to living than science, a time of awakening of my social consciousness and amiability, a time when I was open to new experiences. I had become friendly with a group of people who occasionally smoked cannabis, irregularly, but with evident pleasure. Initially I was unwilling to partake, but the apparent euphoria that cannabis produced and the fact that there was no physiological addiction to the plant eventually persuaded me to try. My initial experiences were entirely disappointing; there was no effect at all, and I began to entertain a variety of hypotheses about cannabis being a placebo which worked by expectation and hyperventilation rather than by chemistry. After about five or six unsuccessful attempts, however, it happened. I was lying on my back in a friend’s living room idly examining the pattern of shadows on the ceiling cast by a potted plant (not cannabis!). I suddenly realized that I was examining an intricately detailed miniature Volkswagen, distinctly outlined by the shadows. I was very skeptical at this perception, and tried to find inconsistencies between Volkswagens and what I viewed on the ceiling. But it was all there, down to hubcaps, license plate, chrome, and even the small handle used for opening the trunk. When I closed my eyes, I was stunned to find that there was a movie going on the inside of my eyelids. Flash . . . a simple country scene with red farmhouse, a blue sky, white clouds, yellow path meandering over green hills to the horizon. . . Flash . . . same scene, orange house, brown sky, red clouds, yellow path, violet fields . . . Flash . . . Flash . . . Flash. The flashes came about once a heartbeat. Each flash brought the same simple scene into view, but each time with a different set of colors . . . exquisitely deep hues, and astonishingly harmonious in their juxtaposition. Since then I have smoked occasionally and enjoyed it thoroughly. It amplifies torpid sensibilities and produces what to me are even more interesting effects, as I will explain shortly....

        ...There is a very nice self-titering aspect to cannabis. Each puff is a very small dose; the time lag between inhaling a puff and sensing its effect is small; and there is no desire for more after the high is there. I think the ratio, R, of the time to sense the dose taken to the time required to take an excessive dose is an important quantity. R is very large for LSD (which I’ve never taken) and reasonably short for cannabis. Small values of R should be one measure of the safety of psychedelic drugs. When cannabis is legalized, I hope to see this ratio as one of he parameters printed on the pack. I hope that time isn’t too distant; the illegality of cannabis is outrageous, an impediment to full utilization of a drug which helps produce the serenity and insight, sensitivity and fellowship so desperately needed in this increasingly mad and dangerous world.



Read the full essay at: http://marijuana-uses.com/mr-x/


77 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  2. thats what you gotta do! i mean it! ;)

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  3. Holy shit, I never knew that about him!

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  4. haha well you learn something every day!

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  5. did you make the picture? its pretty sweet bro

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  6. Oh fuck yes, I fucking love Carl Sagan.
    AND WEED

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  7. ahaha interesting read, the pic made me lol

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  8. Hahah cracked up the hole way through! Love the pic btw..

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  9. Awesome post! keep up the good work...

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  10. Haha! I love the pic of him that says, SMOKE WEED EVERYDAY. I'mma include that in my next pic update.. :D

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  11. nice... gonna check out this essay right now.

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  12. added. good information.... read my blog back, add me back too!

    thanks

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  13. Haha didn't know that but still weed can fuck you up like some guys I know

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  14. Haha very interesting post, will look forward to seeing and reading more from you in the future!

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  15. I'm in love with your blog, mate... I just started following, and i'm in love :)

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  16. Hahaha that pic!

    It's baffling what some people believe about marijuana. It's not more dangerous than tobacco (it's less dangerous, actually), it isn't addictive, and nobody has ever overdosed on it.

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  17. Lmao everyone smokes the ganja man, even the president.

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  18. lol this was an awesome post, made my day!!

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  19. Sagen ftw. Astonomy ftw. Marijuana ftw. Science ftw. This post ftw.

    :)

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  20. beautiful essay i agree entirely

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  21. very interesting..liked the pic:)

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  22. Thats a nice text. and the added pic, lol, awesome.

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  23. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  24. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  25. one day i will become an astroomer..

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  27. looks like fun!

    check out my new blog, The Stepback Fadeaway!

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  28. Interesting read - look forward to more! :D

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  29. Fun blog.
    liek cuz gaga did cowke.

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  30. That was long, but pretty interesting.

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  31. ws looking forward for a new post :)

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  32. Good read, that pic at the end got a good laugh out of me.

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  33. Look forward to your next update! :D I'll keep in touch.

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  35. Well fuck son
    I deleted myself.

    :D

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  36. Carl sagan is my fucking hero! I still watch his videos they're fucking great! :)

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  37. Wow Carl was the man! Maybe this is why he had so many crazy ideas haha. I wonder if hawking does pot too?

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  38. Holy shit. I loved Carl Sagan before, I love him more now. I just watched his "flatland" vid earlier today on y-tube as well.

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  39. "well fuck son im high"

    "well ill be damned... so am i"

    *laughs ass off*

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