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Leary Essay

Leary Essay

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Leary was an American psychologist and writer. He was born Timothy Francis Leary on October 22, 1920. Many know him for his advocacy of the psychedelic drugs. He conducted his studies during the American legality of psilocybin and LSD, under the Harvard Psilocybin Project. It resulted in the Marsh Chapel Experiment and the Concord Prison Experiment.

However, Harvard University fired Leary and his partner Richard Alpert due to the controversy that surrounded the drugs. He believed that LSD had the therapeutic potential for use in psychiatry. His catchphrases, for example, ''set and setting'', ''think for yourself and question the authority'', and ''tune on, tune in, drop out'' promoted his philosophy. He also spoke and wrote about transhumanist concepts.

Leary believed in intelligence increase, space migration, and life extension. He came up with the eight-circuit model of consciousness in 1977. Many governments arrested him in the 1960s and 1970s. He was inside 29 prisons worldwide. President Richard Nixon once labeled him ''the most dangerous man in America.'' (Greenfield, 2006).

In 1960, Leary traveled to Cuernavaca, Mexico, where he consumed psilocybin mushrooms together with his colleague Russo. The experience drastically changed his life. Later in 1965, he commented that he had learned more about his brain and its possibilities. The effect had taken only five hours. When he returned from Mexico, his goal was to analyze how it reacted in human subjects (Gillespie, 2006).

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