Evolving Consciousness | Civilizing Civilization
a film where psychopharmacology and neuroscience, mysticism and depth psychology mesh; where time becomes relative and the viewer is entranced in a thought-provoking journey through the very doors of perception
between your heart and the heart of the cosmos
“This awareness could become the bedrock of a spirituality that is not based on the dogmas of a given religion, but on insights into a higher and deeper meaning. I am referring to the ability to recognize, to read, and to understand the firsthand revelations.” ― Albert Hofmann (1906 — 2008)
"From Neurons to Nirvana: The Great Medicines" (108 minutes, 2014) is about essential psychological, social and therapeutic issues confronting humanity and the role that psychedelics can play in alleviating those issues and assisting in finally civilizing civilization. It's about the neuroscience and the subjective experience of these ancient and taboo medicines as carefully explained by the world's leading neuroscientists, psychopharmacologists and other experts in the field. "From Neurons to Nirvana: The Great Medicines" is the original, "non-dual consciousness" centred vision of the popular released "Neurons to Nirvana: Understanding Psychedelic Medicines" (69 minutes, 2013). The longer film was selected for The Seattle International Film Festival (2014), The Vancouver International Film Festival (2013) and The Montreal Nouveau Cinema Festival (2013). The film introduces a vibrant spectrum of characters that champion psychoactive drugs as medicines and as enhancers. Noted contributors include Dr. David Nichols, Emeritus Professor of Pharmacology, Purdue University who explains in detail the neuroscience of psychedelics, Amanda Feilding, Director of the Beckley Foundation to Further Consciousness; Michael Winkelman, co-editor of the authoritative "Psychedelic Medicine"; Dr. Michael Mithoefer who conducted the groundbreaking, successful posttraumatic stress disorder trials with MDMA; Wade Davis, author, ethnobotanist; Dr. Dennis McKenna, author, ethnopharmacologist, expert on DMT and Ayahuasca; Jeremy Narby, author, anthropologist; Rick Doblin, Director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies and Dr. Gábor Máté, the award winning author and expert on addictions.
“Writer, director and visual artist Oliver Hockenhull outlines the mounting peer-reviewed evidence that nonaddictive psychoactive substances (including ayahuasca, psilocybin, LSD and MDMA) can have profound healing effects when used in a safe, therapeutic setting. The benefits, say a conga line of clinicians, psychologists, neuroscientists and authors, extend from the treatment of alcoholism to the anxiety of terminal cancer patients, and beyond... through judicious editing and sublime visuals, the filmmaker succeeds with colourful advocacy for a new medical paradigm informed by “cognitive liberty” — the freedom to dictate one’s own consciousness.” Geoff Olson, Vancouver Courier.