Researchers Find That Encounters with ‘Higher Power’ May Improve Mental Health

Over the millennia, different individuals have admitted to experiencing deeply moving religious encounters, sometimes spontaneously and sometimes while under the influence of psychedelics, including ayahuasca or psilocybin. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Medicine recently conducted a survey involving individuals who had admitted to experiencing personal encounters with a higher power.

The survey results indicated that more than half of the individuals who identified as atheists stopped identifying as such so after their experience, regardless of whether it was brought on while under the influence of a psychedelic or if it was spontaneous. Additionally, most of the respondents credited the lasting positive changes in their psychological health to their experience.

The survey’s findings were reported in the “PLOS One” journal. The researchers state that these findings add to evidence suggesting that deeply meaningful encounters may possess healing properties.

For their study, the researchers utilized data gathered from more than 4,000 individuals globally who had responded to online ads and completed online surveys about experiences encountering God. The survey asked participants to remember their most memorable encounter with an ultimate reality or a higher power. This is in addition to asking respondents whether the experiences changed their lives and, if so, how; the survey also asked about how they felt about the encounter.

Of the total number of participants, almost 70% of them were men and roughly 87% were white. The most commonly used psychedelic was found to be psilocybin mushrooms, which was followed by LSD, ayahuasca and DMT.

The researchers found that individuals whose encounters had occurred spontaneously usually had those experiences at an average age of 35, while those who had had a higher reality encounter under the influence of a psychedelic usually had this experience at an average age of 25.

Roland Griffiths, a professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the lead researcher, stated that experiences that individuals describe as encounters with a higher power had been reported for millennia and probably formed the basis of many religions globally. He continued that the survey’s findings suggested that these encounters often brought about improvements in an individual’s mental health, despite modern Western medicine not considering religious or spiritual experiences as good for the mind.

Griffiths, who has specialized in behavioral sciences and psychiatry, added that the widespread and historical anecdotal evidence for the substances’ benefits is what motivated the team of researchers to study the value as well as the potential drawbacks of these experiences.

The researchers note that their research design is the first to rigorously and systematically compare reports of experiences that are catalyzed by psychedelics with those of spontaneous higher power encounters.

The beneficial effect of psychedelic-induced encounters with a higher power upon the mental well-being of individuals suggests that any mental health treatments made from psychedelic compounds by companies such as Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: TRYP) (OTCQB: TRYPF) are likely to revolutionize mental health care as we know it.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: TRYP) (OTCQB: TRYPF) available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/TRYPF

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