MDMA and self-esteem 
Author Message
 MDMA and self-esteem

I heard a report on radio about a drug called MDMA that
has some surprising claimed properties. They said it can give
one the immediate self-esteem that might be obtained through
hundreds of hours of psychotherapy. True or not, can someone
gives us some accurate info on this chemical?



Sun, 21 May 1995 06:26:02 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:

>I heard a report on radio about a drug called MDMA that
>has some surprising claimed properties. They said it can give
>one the immediate self-esteem that might be obtained through
>hundreds of hours of psychotherapy. True or not, can someone
>gives us some accurate info on this chemical?

I am no specialist, but i know people who use MDMA.  Yes, it does have a
wonderful effect of boosting people's egos, dissociating them from the
real world, allowing them to over-exert muscles, and provides and
amazing and unique "hang-over" for the next few days.  Those who take it
regularly and an relatively large quantities seem to have a marked
improvement in their outlooks in life - they become relaxed and much
more friendly and easy-going.  Very happy, with themselves and the world
around them.
My question is: These are my own observed effects, over a half-year
period.  What are the more long-term effects, physically and
psychologically?

Kyrsten



Sun, 21 May 1995 09:00:19 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:


>>I heard a report on radio about a drug called MDMA that
>>has some surprising claimed properties. They said it can give
>>one the immediate self-esteem that might be obtained through
>>hundreds of hours of psychotherapy....
>...
>Those who take it
>regularly and an relatively large quantities seem to have a marked
>improvement in their outlooks in life - they become relaxed and much
>more friendly and easy-going.  Very happy, with themselves and the world
>around them.

This raises the old philosophical problem: Do you really _want_ to be
_irrationally_ happy?  Live in squalor and misery and take a drug that
makes you feel happy in spite of it all?

Intuitively, most people don't value happiness very much unless it is
an appropriate and rational response to their situation.

--

:-  Artificial Intelligence Programs       phone 706 542-0358
:-  The University of Georgia                fax 706 542-0349
:-  Athens, Georgia 30602-7415 U.S.A.     amateur radio N4TMI



Sun, 21 May 1995 09:37:03 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:


>>I heard a report on radio about a drug called MDMA that
>>has some surprising claimed properties. They said it can give
>>one the immediate self-esteem that might be obtained through
>>hundreds of hours of psychotherapy. True or not, can someone
>>gives us some accurate info on this chemical?

>I am no specialist, but i know people who use MDMA.  Yes, it does have a
>wonderful effect of boosting people's egos, dissociating them from the
> [stuff taken out...]
>My question is: These are my own observed effects, over a half-year
>period.  What are the more long-term effects, physically and
>psychologically?

>Kyrsten

now, i'll have to consult a specialist, but i think that MDMA is what
they call "ecstacy", which is a chemical variant of MDA, a [supposedly]
truly wonderful substance to play around with. MDMA, if i am correct,
was at one tagged as the new 'wonder drug' in psychiatry, so called because
of it's apparent healing effect on the average Very Troubled Person. since
its crossover into a very popular recreational drug, it has, of course,
become the target of police action. i recall the ecstacy was most popular
among people who went to danceclubs, etc., a lot, amongst the people i knew.

anyway, there should be quite a bit of research literature around on the
stuff, with regard to both the physical and psychological effects of
its use, whether short or long term.

anyway, i hope this is on the right track.

scott



Sun, 21 May 1995 09:46:31 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

  It has been a couple of years since I did some intensive
reading about MDMA (never tried it).
It is a combination of amphetamine and synthetic mescaline.
Interesting that there is a branching of socio value systems
on this one:  the xtacy crowd on the one hand, and the
psychiatrists extolling its merits on the other (and law enforc-
ment in the middle?).
Personally I do not believe a chemical high can create greater
empathy for others or greater wisdom.  That only comes through
time and experience and perhaps only with those who "do the
work."

--
Capt. Kirk: let's head for that planet, third from the sun, it
            looks promising.... |-)



Sun, 21 May 1995 14:13:50 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:
a.edu (Michael Covington) writes:

gov (Kyrsten Swazey) writes:

>>>I heard a report on radio about a drug called MDMA that
>>>has some surprising claimed properties. They said it can give
>>>one the immediate self-esteem that might be obtained through
>>>hundreds of hours of psychotherapy....
>>...
>>Those who take it
>>regularly and an relatively large quantities seem to have a marked
>>improvement in their outlooks in life - they become relaxed and much
>>more friendly and easy-going.  Very happy, with themselves and the worl
>>around them.

>This raises the old philosophical problem: Do you really _want_ to be
>_irrationally_ happy?  Live in squalor and misery and take a drug that
>makes you feel happy in spite of it all?

>Intuitively, most people don't value happiness very much unless it is
>an appropriate and rational response to their situation.

>--

>:-  Artificial Intelligence Programs       phone 706 542-0358
>:-  The University of Georgia                fax 706 542-0349
>:-  Athens, Georgia 30602-7415 U.S.A.     amateur radio N4TMI

 This sounds like a puritanical attitude. It appears that humans are
incapable of true happiness without some aid. I believ chemical happiness,
if it has few debilitating effects, can open the door to the true
happiness that every person seeks in whatever form they seek it in. What
is the justification in maligning chemical happiness. I suppose that I am
biased by my love of chemical entities (being an organic chemist).

St. Anthony

--
          / N \   O                   Mi vsi smo krizhani,
         |   \ |  || Ph               chlani izbrani
         |   | |_O-C-C-OH             mesarskega ceha...



Sun, 21 May 1995 14:25:44 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:
(Mike E. Romano) writes:

>  It has been a couple of years since I did some intensive
>reading about MDMA (never tried it).
>It is a combination of amphetamine and synthetic mescaline.
>Interesting that there is a branching of socio value systems
>on this one:  the xtacy crowd on the one hand, and the
>psychiatrists extolling its merits on the other (and law enforc-
>ment in the middle?).
>Personally I do not believe a chemical high can create greater
>empathy for others or greater wisdom.  That only comes through
>time and experience and perhaps only with those who "do the
>work."

>--
>Capt. Kirk: let's head for that planet, third from the sun, it
>            looks promising.... |-)

 I hate to sound hostile and negative, but this is the same kind of
bullshit that encourages scorn for psychotherapeutic and perhaps safer
recreational {*filter*} (if there is such a thing...). I suppose chronically
depressed patients can just "cheer up" too. It's interesting how people
refuse to believe how effective a catalyst a psychoactive drug can be.
Of course you can't let the drug do all of the work, but its use is quite
valid.

St. Anthony

--
          / N \   O                   Mi vsi smo krizhani,
         |   \ |  || Ph               chlani izbrani
         |   | |_O-C-C-OH             mesarskega ceha...



Mon, 22 May 1995 03:10:52 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:


>>Those who take it
>>regularly and an relatively large quantities seem to have a marked
>>improvement in their outlooks in life - they become relaxed and much
>>more friendly and easy-going.  Very happy, with themselves and the world
>>around them.

>This raises the old philosophical problem: Do you really _want_ to be
>_irrationally_ happy?  Live in squalor and misery and take a drug that
>makes you feel happy in spite of it all?

>Intuitively, most people don't value happiness very much unless it is
>an appropriate and rational response to their situation.

i don't think that e makes one happy if their life is otherwise
miserable. however, there is no reason not to smile for no reason
when you're walking down the street. i know that when someone i don't
know smiles at me, it makes my whole day. i try to apply this as much
as i can. of course, you don't need {*filter*} to be happy.
  -camper.
.

--
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
                             stay groovy.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++



Mon, 22 May 1995 04:31:23 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:

>>Those who take it
>>regularly and an relatively large quantities seem to have a marked
>>improvement in their outlooks in life - they become relaxed and much
>>more friendly and easy-going.  Very happy, with themselves and the world
>>around them.

>This raises the old philosophical problem: Do you really _want_ to be
>_irrationally_ happy?  Live in squalor and misery and take a drug that
>makes you feel happy in spite of it all?

>Intuitively, most people don't value happiness very much unless it is
>an appropriate and rational response to their situation.

---

        Oh?  Intuitively?  Most people?  It would seem that the people who
are happy would value their happiness even if you don't.

        You can have two people in the same exact circumstance.  One is
happy with life while the other is miserable -- striving, nervous,
on edge, etc.  Are you saying the second is better?  If I say their
circumstances are poor, lets say <15K, supporting a family, little hope
of advancement.  *You* would probably say the first person was deluded, but
if you change their circumstances to rich >200K, nice family, etc.  You
might begin to think the second person was sick.

        Yet, you are the one who is *judging* other people's circumstances.
Why should you be the one who decides which person is 'sick'?  If someone
has achieved happiness and inner peace, in spite of what you might consider
'bad' conditions, is this not perhaps 'enviable'?  If they reached that
state through spiritual meditation and enlightenment rather than by
introspection brought on by a drug, does that make it "better"?  Or is
that the same to you?

        It seems to me that you are being overly judgemental of other's people's
circumstances and/or happiness when you really don't have the right to.
If it makes them happy and that is what they want -- why not let them
have it?

william
--
1935 will go down in history.  For the first time, a civilized nation has
full gun registration.  Our streets will be safer, our police more efficient,
and the world will follow our lead into the future.
                         --Adolf Hitler



Mon, 22 May 1995 05:43:43 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:

>>This raises the old philosophical problem: Do you really _want_ to be
>>_irrationally_ happy?  Live in squalor and misery and take a drug that
>>makes you feel happy in spite of it all? ...
>    You can have two people in the same exact circumstance.  One is
>happy with life while the other is miserable -- striving, nervous,
>on edge, etc.  Are you saying the second is better?...

If two people in the same _external_ circumstances differ in level of
happiness, and both are psychologically healthy (i.e., neither one is
diagnosable as depressive or whatever), then there is a _cognitive_
difference between them.  They have different assumptions and attitudes
toward their circumstances.  We can proceed to ask which set of assumptions
and attitudes is the better one, when we know more about the circumstances.

Quote:
>    Yet, you are the one who is *judging* other people's circumstances.

Of course I am.  "Judgement" (in the epistemological sense of the word)
is the stuff of which thought is made.  

--

:-  Artificial Intelligence Programs       phone 706 542-0358
:-  The University of Georgia                fax 706 542-0349
:-  Athens, Georgia 30602-7415 U.S.A.     amateur radio N4TMI



Mon, 22 May 1995 07:58:38 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:
>  It has been a couple of years since I did some intensive
>reading about MDMA (never tried it).
>It is a combination of amphetamine and synthetic mescaline.

Nope, see my comments in another post...

Quote:
>Personally I do not believe a chemical high can create greater
>empathy for others or greater wisdom.  That only comes through
>time and experience and perhaps only with those who "do the
>work."

Thats not how its necessarily used...  again, see my comments in
another post...

--

  "When dogma enters the brain, all intellectual activity ceases."
                                      -- Robert Anton Wilson



Mon, 22 May 1995 12:21:39 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem
MDMA, aka Ecstasy, X, XTC, E, Adam, etc, etc...

Chemically:
----------

     MDMA = 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine
     MDA  = 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine

     MDMA = N-methyl-MDA = Adam  
     MDE  = N-ethyl-MDA  = Eve

     O     /\     /\     NHCH3  
   /   \ /    \ /    \ /  
  /     |      |      |  
 CH2    |      |      CH3
  \     |      |
   \   / \    /
     O     \/

     Replacing the NHCH3 with NH2 is MDA; Replacing it with NHCH2CH3
     is MDE.  MBDB is formed by replacing the CH3 with CH2CH3 (I forget
     the chemical name of this offhand).  Replacing the NHCH3 with
     a double bond to an O atom gives you 3,4-methyeledioxyphenylacetone
     which is typically the immediate precursor to MDA, MDMA & MDE.  
     Eliminating the radical entirely and replacing the CH3 with a
     double bond to a CH2 gives isosafrole which is 3,4-methylenedioxy-
     allylbenzene which is an essential oil.

     If you slice off the first methylenedioxy ring you get
     methamphetamine -- then replace the NHCH3 with NH2 and you're looking
     at amphetamine.

Psychologically:
---------------

     MDMA is *chemically* an amphetamine, but psychologically its
     whats known as an empathogen-entactogen.  There is some amphetamine
     stimulant quality left, which enhances the empathogenic quality.
     The empathogenic quality is basically the ability to communicate
     things to others, and the ability to feel empathy towards others.
     Its sort of an "external" quality, that opens lines of communication.
     The stimulating quality and the empathogenic effect are what most
     recreational users seem to be after.  The entactogenic effect, on
     the other hand, is an internal quality.  Its a sense that the
     world is sort of "and okay place to be" (that sounds kinda stupid
     but its hard to describe...  kinda like daily affirmation with
     Stuart Smalley only its a genuine feeling...).

     THESE ARE ACUTE EFFECTS!!!!  You don't dose someone up with MDMA
     and expect the high to last forever, thats not the concept...

Psychotherapeutic Use:
----------------------

     The idea is to use the acute effects of the drug to massively
     accelerate psychotherapy.  The empathogenic effect has obvious
     applications, both for use by the therapist and the patient.
     It facilitates communication, trust, etc, ad nauseum.  

     The entactogenic effect is what does the work, however.  It
     strengthens the ego, and is *NOT* *NOT* dissasociative.  It is
     the only recreational drug that I have tried to date that has
     allowed me to keep a clear mind without being dissasociative
     or stoning (hell, it makes my mind clearer than it normally
     is) -- confusion on MDMA is not a normally encountered
     problem.

     Now, if you read the book PiHKAL (Phenethylamines I Have Known
     and Loved by Alexander Shulgin) or Through the Gateway of the
     Heart [and I think you can find out how to get both of these from
     the Misc FAQ on alt.{*filter*} -- if not, I'll post], you will come
     across very striking situations where the entactogenic effect of
     MDMA can help.  In particular, I believe its probably the best
     way to get repressed memories to resurface that there is (provided
     that the patient is prepared to remember them).  The entactogenic
     effect acts as an emotional brace so that the patient can
     recall the event without going through incredible emotional
     trauma.  That allows the mind to relax its protection on those
     memories and let the person remember them...

     It is *not* another LSD.  LSD, IMHO, is risky for doing this kind
     of shit.  MDMA does not cause bad trips, and the only psychological
     risk that you're in for is that the person is going to not
     get anything out of it.

Related Chemicals:
------------------

     Amphetamine stimulants are just useless because while they facilitate
     communications (and *lots* of communication), they tend to
     not do anything for a persons emotions (other than maybe inflate
     their ego).

     MDA is similar to MDMA, but its an empathogen-entheogen rather
     than an empathogen-entactogen.  It (as opposed to MDMA) does make
     one stoned, and at higher doses it tends to be hard to remember
     the first part of the sentence that a person is speaking.  Its
     generally not considered anywhere near as useful for therapy as
     MDMA, although some researchers have had some success with it.
     MDE has roughly the same effects as MDA (offhand I can't recall
     the details of the differences and I have never tried MDE before).

     Neurochemically, MDA and MDMA are quite different.  Their active
     isomers are switched, and MDA seems to effect the 5-HT2 receptor
     where MDMA is inactive.

     MBDB has a somewhat similar effect to MDMA, and has been proposed
     as the prototypical entactogenic drug.  Its not as useful as
     MDMA, however, since it doesn't facilitate the same amount of
     communication.  Only about 50% of the people who take it feel that
     its comparable to MDMA.  Neurochemically the difference is that
     MBDB seems to release less dopamine than MDMA for one thing.

Side effects and other crap:
----------------------------

     MDMA doesn't cause parkinson's disease -- MPTP which an entirely
     different drug (an opiate) does.  MDMA doesn't dry up your
     spinal fluid -- thats a completely stupid and silly concept to
     begin with.  The way that researcher's have been *testing* for
     MDMA damage is to draw a spinal tap.  What they are looking for
     is lower levels of 5-HIAA which might indicate damage to
     5-HT neurons.  In short they haven't found anything convincing
     in humans.  In animals it takes large doses over consecutive
     days to produce neurotoxicity (bursting of 5-HT axons, which
     is reparable).  With smaller doses with longer time periods
     in between, there is no evidence of neurotoxicity.  I have
     never heard of MDMA producing paranoia or schizophrenic breaks
     or anything like that -- that is an effect one might expect of
     classical amphetamines or LSD (respectively).  MDMA may actually
     be useful in treating patients with paranoia or schizoid features.
     MDMA is a damn safe drug, certainly more safe than {*filter*}.  The
     only problems would be due to its exaggerating existing heart
     conditions.  And also, as recently happened in England, the
     stimulant qualities could make a person overextert themselves
     without knowing it (however, thats really quite rare -- 7 cases
     is nothing compared with the wreckage due to {*filter*}).

     For more info check out the alt.{*filter*} FAQ... or the books cited
     above (And add MDMA: the Ecstasy Story as another good one to
     check out...).

So, have I cleared most everything up, or are there more questions?

--

  "When dogma enters the brain, all intellectual activity ceases."
                                      -- Robert Anton Wilson



Mon, 22 May 1995 13:17:04 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

  I stand corrected on my opinions concerning MMDA.  I am
  heartened to hear of its humanity yielding properties.

  I take it that some of the posters replying to mine, being
  angry were not at that time under the MMDA advisory
  influence.  I can understand that.

  I look forward to the day when chemists will find a way for
  each homeowner, resident to manufacture his own personal
  quantities of an ideal chemical/drug, making it possible
  to enjoy life, smile at anyone for any and no reason, and
  take another look at all those repressed memories, with
  relish.  Sort of a meth kitchen recipe book.

--
Capt. Kirk: let's head for that planet, third from the sun, it
            looks promising.... |-)



Mon, 22 May 1995 15:42:19 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

Quote:
gton.edu (Lamont Granquist) writes:

>>  It has been a couple of years since I did some intensive
>>reading about MDMA (never tried it).
>>It is a combination of amphetamine and synthetic mescaline.

>Nope, see my comments in another post...

>>Personally I do not believe a chemical high can create greater
>>empathy for others or greater wisdom.  That only comes through
>>time and experience and perhaps only with those who "do the

 Any high you ever get is chemical. Know the nature of your mind and you
will know that it is chemical...

Quote:
>>work."

>Thats not how its necessarily used...  again, see my comments in
>another post...

>--

>  "When dogma enters the brain, all intellectual activity ceases."
>                                      -- Robert Anton Wilson

--
          / N \   O                   Mi vsi smo krizhani,
         |   \ |  || Ph               chlani izbrani
         |   | |_O-C-C-OH             mesarskega ceha...



Mon, 22 May 1995 22:53:11 GMT
 MDMA and self-esteem

 No you guys have done it! You've gone and made Lamont dig out his ascii
drawings! :-)

St. Anthony

--
          / N \   O                   Mi vsi smo krizhani,
         |   \ |  || Ph               chlani izbrani
         |   | |_O-C-C-OH             mesarskega ceha...



Mon, 22 May 1995 22:54:40 GMT
 
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