The passing of a psychedelic giant03 Jun 2014 | Reading time: 1 min
Around 5 pm PST on June 2, 2014, our long-time friend and role model Sasha Shulgin gently died after several years of battling various illnesses. He had recently been diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. Around 6:30 pm we received phone calls from two members of the Shulgin team letting us know the sad news. Much love to his family and those whose lives he touched, from the Erowid Crew. He died surrounded by friends and family. Gate gate Para gate Para sam gate Bodhi Svaha! Gone gone, Gone beyond Gone way beyond Hail the goer!
Shulgin was a notable and prolific chemist, and in his decades-long career managed to rediscover and popularise MDMA (both its recreational use and in PTSD therapy) and develop hundreds of new psychedelic drugs, 2C-B, 2C-E and DOM being the most famous and popular of his creations. Some of his most profound writing can be found in PiHKAL, his memoir-cum-lab notebook that details many of his syntheses and ‘bioassays’. Entry #109, on MDMA, is one of the most moving. It made me realise that we are already equipped for bliss, and that the substrates of superhappiness are already within us, waiting to be unlocked.
We should be grateful that we are already so rich, and that there is so much inside for us to discover. 4