What is a Shulginist?
Updated: Oct 29, 2022
A Shulginist is one who believes in or practices the principles laid down by late medicinal chemist, biochemist, organic chemist, pharmacologist, psychopharmacologist and author Alexander Shulgin.
Alexander (Sasha) Shulgin invented new psychoactives and tried them on himself.
His methodology was based on a few fundamental understandings and principles detailed below:
The Logarithmic Scale - Compounds should be tried on an ascending logarithmic scale.This allows for toxic or detrimental phenomena to appear early and non-harmfully in the self-experimentation process.
The QSAR Paradox - Small changes to molecules may cause large changes in effect. With this in mind chemical space must be explored thoroughly, molecule by molecule.
Self-Experimentation - Since we cannot ask lab animals about their psychoactive experience and since we have no working predictive model for the human brain, we can only explore the realm of new psychoactives by experimenting on ourselves.
Alexander and Ann Shulgin published two masterpieces of storytelling and science - Pihkal and Tihkal. These books are beautifully depicted narratives until halfway through. The other half of each of the books contains chemical procedures for the synthesis of each chemical together with commentary as to experiences with the compounds described.