This article was originally published on WeedWeek, and appears here with permission.
After quitting their jobs as concept designers with Jaguar/Land Rover in 2018, a pair of college buddies set out in search of their next professional adventure with the stipulation that it be rooted in a desire “to help people achieve freer, more fulfilling lives.”
Tom Galea and Jay Conlon, who met while attending the University of Liverpool in London, began interviewing people worldwide to learn more about what motivates them. After poring over the data, they concluded that people who reported reaching higher levels of fulfillment had gone through personal growth cycles, which they defined as having discovered a fresh perspective and embraced true change. Generally, they found, those personal growth cycles were sparked by a specific point of inspiration.
“We wanted to try to work out how we could target inspiration,” Galea said.
It was from there, Galea said, that they began researching the subconscious. That journey led them to launch Lumenate, a company that uses technology to make subconscious exploration more accessible.
The duo is now among a growing group of entrepreneurs and activists exploring the largely uncharted intersection between the everyday technologies that power most our lives and the increasingly credible research into psychedelics as both catalysts for self-realization and treatments for mental health conditions.
Galea, who described Lumenate’s offerings as a “primer” for a psychedelic experience, was among a panel of professionals who recently discussed how technology is impacting the future of psychedelics. The panel discussion was part of a larger “Psychedelic Capital” webinar presented by Microdose Psychedelic Insights, a company that coordinates events focused on the psychedelic industry.
The panel touched on ways cell phone apps, video games and artificial intelligence are helping to shape the future of a group of plants – including Psilocybin mushrooms, commonly known as magic mushrooms – that are generating increased attention for their potential medical benefits.
Although the speakers focused on how technology can enhance a psychedelic experience or make one more accessible, they stressed that tech should not supplant natural substances.
“We absolutely should not be looking to replace the wisdom of these plants and fungi,” said Robin Arnott, CEO and founder of Andromeda Entertainment, a video game developer. “That [plant wisdom] goes beyond human intelligence and human wisdom.”
Reaching the subconscious
Much of Wednesday’s panel focused on how emerging tech can help users …