Objection to the Psychedelics Challenge

A friend replied to my post challenging philosophers to try psychedelics. Here’s the proposed counterargument:

There are plenty of good reasons to not do drugs. For me, my lack of interest is chief among them. As an autistic person I already experience the world in different ways than most people. In fact, most people in general interact and experience the world differently than other people.

So I don’t see the need for everyone to converge around certain experiences because they’ve been enlightening for others or helped with their mental health issues. There are many ways to get perspective on the world and feel better about your mental health without taking drugs.

What is enlightening for some may seem dull for others. I could just as easily see people who have gone to space arguing a similar argument: If you haven’t gone to space then you’re not serious about philosophical inquiry because seeing the world from the outside is a great moment in perspectives.

But you could easily counter that we can view the world from the outside via satellite feed or pictures or get a taste of it from people’s experiences. There’s no need to subject everyone to space travel just for the *chance* that maybe they’ll gain some new and profound perspective.

Similarly with drugs we can see how these affect people via studies, people’s stories, audio files, video files, second-hand experience of our friends doing drugs, etc. There’s also no need here to subject everyone to drugs or pressuring them to try them because we can already find out what chemically and mentally is happening, at least to an extent.

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