Sasha-Shulgin – Psychedelic Frontier http://psychedelicfrontier.com make the most of your dose Wed, 16 May 2018 11:00:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.5 48719013 Too Big for a Nobel Prize: Remembering Sasha Shulgin http://psychedelicfrontier.com/remembering-sasha-shulgin/ http://psychedelicfrontier.com/remembering-sasha-shulgin/#comments Tue, 17 Feb 2015 13:54:24 +0000 http://psychedelicfrontier.com/?p=3777 Too Big for a Nobel Prize: Remembering Sasha Shulgin

David Presti celebrates Sasha Shulgin in the most recent MAPS Bulletin.

Alexander “Sasha” Shulgin was born in Berkeley on June 17, 1925, and received his bachelor’s (1949) and doctorate (1955) degrees from the local college, the University of California in Berkeley. Except for some time spent as an undergraduate at Harvard and a stint in the U.S. Navy during World War II, he lived his entire life either in Berkeley or nearby in the East Bay.

Sasha’s doctoral research in biochemistry at UC Berkeley developed methods for the synthesis of amino acids containing chemical isotopes of carbon and nitrogen. Isotopically labeled molecules like these are useful for investigating details of metabolic pathways, how the body manufactures this from that.

Although Sasha later wrote that his doctoral work was “uninspired” and “dull” (PiHKAL, Chapter 2), adjectives like these are commonly applied to graduate-school projects.

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Good-bye Sasha: Legendary Chemist Alexander Shulgin Dies at 88 http://psychedelicfrontier.com/good-bye-sasha-chemist-alexander-shulgin-dies/ http://psychedelicfrontier.com/good-bye-sasha-chemist-alexander-shulgin-dies/#comments Tue, 03 Jun 2014 07:08:48 +0000 http://psychedelicfrontier.com/?p=3088 Good-bye Sasha: Legendary Chemist Alexander Shulgin Dies at 88

Dr. Alexander Shulgin, the influential and beloved psychedelic pioneer, has passed away at the age of 88. He died of liver cancer on Monday, 2 June, surrounded by family and friends at his home in California. Shulgin had suffered declining health in the past few years, including a stroke and the onset of dementia beginning in 2010. About his final days, his wife Ann wrote:

Sasha knows that he’s dying, but that doesn’t bother him. He doesn’t know he has cancer of the liver, and there’s no need for him to know; that knowledge would give him nothing useful. After all, as he has said, “We all have to die of something!”

Thanks to all of you for your support all these years. We appreciate every single dollar and every note or e-mail. You have kept our Tibetan and British caregivers here with him, and he has been surrounded by love and a lot of laughter, due to your help and compassion.

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Sasha Shulgin Compares Drug War to Persecution of Galileo http://psychedelicfrontier.com/sasha-shulgin-compares-drug-war-persecution-galileo/ http://psychedelicfrontier.com/sasha-shulgin-compares-drug-war-persecution-galileo/#respond Mon, 07 Apr 2014 11:42:41 +0000 http://psychedelicfrontier.com/?p=2011 Sasha Shulgin Compares Drug War to Persecution of Galileo

I was so struck by this passage from Alexander Shulgin’s book Tihkal (Tryptamines I Have Known and Loved) that I had to share it here:

 

Professor David Nutt has made a similar comparison, describing the UN’s ban on psychedelics as “the worst case of scientific censorship since the Catholic Church banned the works of Galileo.”

You can read the second half of Tihkal (the chemical section) on Erowid, or better yet on isomerdesign.com where it is more accurate and more user-friendly. But the first half of the book remains copyrighted, so if you’d like to read the whole thing, buy a copy! It’s one of the classics of psychedelic literature. Sasha and Ann Shulgin have done more to advance the chemical understanding of tryptamines and phenethylamines than anyone else in history. They are heroes to millions of psychonauts thanks to their many years of courageous self-experimentation and their dedication to sharing the truth, no matter what the cost.

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