Taking Shrooms: Why Do It?

taking shrooms

Shrooms, or magic mushrooms, have been used for centuries for their psychedelic effects. Many people choose to take shrooms for a variety of reasons, from recreational use to spiritual and therapeutic purposes.

In this article, we will explore the world of shrooms and provide insightful information on their benefits, effects, and precautions. We will also touch on legal and cultural aspects and offer alternatives to those who may be interested in exploring other natural substances with similar effects.

Key Takeaways

  • Shrooms have been used for centuries for their psychedelic effects.
  • People take shrooms for a variety of reasons, including recreational, spiritual, and therapeutic purposes.
  • In this article, we will explore the potential benefits, effects, precautions, and alternatives of using shrooms.

Understanding Shrooms: What Are They?

Shrooms, also known as magic mushrooms, are a type of fungi that contain psychoactive compounds. These compounds, such as psilocybin and psilocin, can cause changes in perception, mood, and thought. Shrooms have been used for centuries in traditional medicine and spiritual practices in different parts of the world.

Shrooms are usually found in the wild, but they can also be cultivated for recreational or medicinal purposes. They can be consumed in various ways, such as eating them fresh or dried, brewing them into tea, or mixing them with food. The effects of shrooms can vary depending on the dosage, individual factors, and the setting in which they are consumed.

Shrooms are often associated with psychedelic mushrooms, which also contain psychoactive substances. However, shrooms and psychedelic mushrooms are not the same thing. Psychedelic mushrooms refer to a broader category of mushrooms that contain different types and amounts of psychoactive compounds, while shrooms specifically refer to mushrooms that contain psilocybin and psilocin.

The use of shrooms has been subject to controversy and legal restrictions in many countries. However, recent research has shown promising results in the use of shrooms for therapeutic purposes, which has led to changes in legal regulations in some places.

The Magical Effects of Shrooms

One of the main reasons people choose to take shrooms is for the magical effects they can induce. The active ingredient in shrooms is psilocybin, which can alter the brain’s perception and thought processes, leading to a unique and often intense experience.

One of the most notable effects of taking shrooms is the vivid visual hallucinations that can occur. Colors may appear more vibrant, patterns may form and shift, and objects may appear distorted or morphed. In addition to visual changes, shrooms can also enhance auditory perception, making sounds seem more intense or meaningful.

Shrooms can also have an impact on emotions, leading to heightened feelings of empathy, love, and connectedness. This can lead to a sense of unity with the world around you and a better understanding of your place in it.

Some people also report spiritual experiences while taking shrooms, feeling a connection to a higher power or a sense of oneness with the universe. These experiences can be transformative and provide a new perspective on life.

The Importance of Set and Setting

It’s important to note that the effects of shrooms can vary depending on the user’s mindset and the environment they are in. The concept of “set and setting” refers to the user’s mindset and the physical and social environment they are in while taking shrooms. A positive and comfortable set and setting can enhance the effects of shrooms, while a negative or stressful one can lead to a difficult experience. It’s important to carefully consider these factors before taking shrooms.

Benefits of Taking Shrooms

While taking shrooms is not without risks, there are potential benefits that have garnered increasing interest from researchers and practitioners alike.

Therapeutic Use

One of the most well-known potential benefits of taking shrooms is their therapeutic use in treating mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, and addiction. Studies have shown promising results in using psilocybin, the active ingredient in shrooms, to reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, improve mood and quality of life, and increase feelings of well-being. Some studies have also shown that shrooms can be effective in treating addiction by helping people overcome cravings and reducing the risk of relapse.

It is important to note that these studies are still in their early stages, and more research is needed to fully understand the potential therapeutic benefits of shrooms. Additionally, shrooms should only be used in a therapeutic setting under the guidance of a trained professional.

Personal Growth and Spiritual Insights

Another potential benefit of taking shrooms is the potential for personal growth and spiritual insights. Shrooms can induce a state of altered consciousness that can lead to enhanced creativity, self-reflection, and a sense of connectedness to the world around us. Many people report feeling a greater sense of empathy and understanding toward others after taking shrooms, as well as a sense of awe and wonder at the beauty of nature.

Again, it is important to approach these experiences with caution and seek professional guidance if needed. Shrooms should only be taken in a safe and controlled environment, with a trusted guide or friend who can provide support and guidance throughout the experience.


While the potential benefits of taking shrooms are intriguing, it is important to remember that shrooms are not a magic cure-all. They should be used with caution and respect, and only in appropriate settings with appropriate guidance. As with any substance, the risks and benefits of taking shrooms should be carefully considered and weighed before embarking on a shroom journey.

Safe Usage and Precautions

While shrooms can offer a transformative experience, it’s essential to take precautions to ensure safety and avoid potential risks. Here are some important steps you should take when using shrooms:


Shrooms can vary in potency, so it’s crucial to start with a low dosage and slowly work up to a higher dose over multiple sessions. A typical dosage is between 1 and 2.5 grams of dried shrooms. Avoid taking too much at once, as high doses can bring on intense experiences that can be difficult to manage.

Set and Setting

The environment in which you take shrooms can influence your experience. It’s essential to create a safe and comfortable setting that is free from distractions and potential stressors. Consider using shrooms in a quiet and familiar location with a trusted person present to provide support if needed.

Risks and Contraindications

Shrooms can pose risks to people with certain medical conditions, such as psychosis or heart problems. People who are pregnant or breastfeeding should also avoid shrooms. Mixing shrooms with other substances, such as alcohol or prescription drugs, can be dangerous and should be avoided. Always seek professional guidance if you have any concerns about using shrooms.

Responsible Use

It’s important to use shrooms responsibly and respect the power of the experience. Avoid using shrooms as a way to escape from reality or cope with emotional issues. Instead, approach the experience with an open and curious mind, and be prepared to face any challenging emotions or thoughts that may arise.

By taking these precautions and using shrooms responsibly, you can have a safe and transformative experience that can offer long-term benefits.

Duration and Effects on the Body

After taking shrooms, the effects can last anywhere from four to six hours, depending on the dose and individual metabolism. The peak experience typically occurs two to three hours after ingestion, with a gradual decline in intensity thereafter.

The main psychoactive component in shrooms is psilocybin, which is rapidly converted to psilocin in the body. Psilocin activates specific receptors in the brain that regulate mood, perception, and thought processes. While the effects can be profound and mystical, they can also be unpredictable and overwhelming, particularly in high doses or in unfamiliar settings.

It’s important to note that shrooms can have different effects on different people, depending on factors such as age, body weight, mental state, and overall health. Some people may experience nausea, anxiety, or paranoia, while others may feel euphoric and connected to the universe.

It’s also worth considering the impact of shrooms on the body beyond the immediate effects. While psilocybin is not considered addictive, it can cause temporary changes in brain chemistry that may affect mood and behavior long after the experience. Some studies suggest that shrooms may have therapeutic potential for conditions such as depression and anxiety, but more research is needed to fully understand their effects.

Integrating the Shroom Experience

After taking shrooms, it’s essential to take the time to integrate the experience into your everyday life. This integration process involves reflection, introspection, and seeking support from others who have had similar experiences. Here are some tips to help you integrate your shroom experience:

  • Reflect: Take some time to reflect on your shroom experience and what it meant to you. Write down your thoughts and feelings in a journal or share your experience with a trusted friend or therapist.
  • Integrate: Try to integrate the insights and lessons you gained from your shroom experience into your daily life. This might involve changes in your behavior, relationships, or worldview.
  • Seek Support: Seek support from others who have had similar experiences. This might involve joining a support group, attending a retreat, or seeking guidance from a therapist.
  • Be Patient: Be patient with yourself and the integration process. It can take time to fully process and integrate the insights and lessons gained from a shroom experience.

Integrating a shroom experience can lead to long-term changes in your life, including increased self-awareness, personal growth, and a greater sense of connection to the world around you. Take the time to reflect, integrate, and seek support to make the most of your shroom experience.

Legal Status and Cultural Perspectives

Shrooms, like other psychedelics, have had a complex legal history. In the United States, they were classified as a Schedule I substance in 1970, meaning they have a high potential for abuse and no currently accepted medical use. However, in recent years, several cities and states have decriminalized possession and use of shrooms, and ongoing research may lead to their legalization for medical purposes in the future.

Outside the US, the legal status of shrooms varies widely. In some countries, such as Brazil and the Netherlands, shrooms are legal or partially legal, while in others, such as Japan and Malaysia, they are strictly prohibited.

Despite their legal status, shrooms have a long history of cultural and spiritual use. Indigenous cultures in Central and South America have used psilocybin-containing mushrooms for centuries in religious ceremonies and healing rituals. In recent decades, the use of shrooms in Western society has become increasingly mainstream, with some people integrating them into their personal growth and spiritual practices.

However, it is important to recognize and respect cultural differences in the use of shrooms and other psychedelics. Appropriating or commodifying indigenous practices can be disrespectful and harmful, and it is essential to approach these substances with humility and cultural sensitivity.

Exploring Alternatives and Similar Substances

While shrooms have unique characteristics and effects, there are alternative options available for those who are curious about exploring psychedelics or natural substances. Here are some other substances that people may try:

SubstanceDescriptionLegal Status
LSDA synthetic compound that induces similar effects to shrooms, including altered perceptions and heightened emotions. LSD is often used recreationally, but can also be used for therapeutic purposes.Generally illegal, but some countries have decriminalized or legalized it for medical use.
DMTA naturally occurring substance that can induce intense visual and auditory hallucinations. It is often consumed through ayahuasca, a traditional shamanic brew.Illegal in most countries, but some have legalized or decriminalized it for religious or cultural purposes.
MescalineA naturally occurring substance found in peyote cactus that can induce altered perceptions and enhanced emotions. It is often used in Native American religious ceremonies.Generally illegal, but some countries have exceptions for religious or cultural use.
KetamineA dissociative anesthetic that induces a dream-like state and altered perceptions. It is often used in medical settings as an anesthetic and as a treatment for depression.Legal for medical use, but often used illegally for recreational purposes.
MicrodosingThe practice of taking very small doses of psychedelics, such as shrooms, on a regular basis. Supporters claim it can enhance creativity, mood, and focus.Generally illegal, but some countries have decriminalized or legalized it for medical or research purposes.

It is important to note that the effects and risks of these substances can vary widely depending on factors such as dosage, set and setting, and individual differences. Furthermore, some of these substances may be illegal or only legally accessible through certain channels. If you are interested in exploring alternatives to shrooms, it is important to do thorough research, seek out reliable sources of information, and approach their use with caution and responsibility.


Taking shrooms can be a profound and transformative experience for many people. From the altered state of consciousness to the potential for personal growth and therapeutic benefits, shrooms offer a unique opportunity for exploration and self-discovery.

However, it is important to approach shrooms with caution and responsibility. Safe usage and precautions, such as dosage and set and setting, are essential for a positive experience. Seeking professional guidance or support can also be helpful, especially for those with pre-existing mental health conditions.

Integrating the shroom experience into daily life can be a valuable process for making meaning and long-term changes. Reflection, journaling, and seeking support are some ways to facilitate this integration.

While shrooms may not be legal in all countries and states, they have a rich history and cultural significance in many societies. Understanding the legal status and cultural perspectives on shrooms can provide a broader context for their use and exploration.

For those who are interested in exploring alternatives or similar substances, there are various options available. However, it is important to approach these substances with the same caution and responsibility as with shrooms.

In conclusion, taking shrooms can be a powerful and transformative experience, but it requires careful consideration and responsible use. With the right mindset and precautions, it can offer a unique opportunity for exploration, self-discovery, and personal growth.


Q: Why do people choose to take shrooms?

A: People choose to take shrooms for various reasons, including for spiritual and personal growth, exploration of consciousness, creativity enhancement, and therapeutic purposes.

Q: What are shrooms?

A: Shrooms, or psychedelic mushrooms, are a type of fungi that contain psychoactive compounds such as psilocybin and psilocin.

Q: What are the effects of taking shrooms?

A: Taking shrooms can induce an altered state of consciousness, including visual and auditory hallucinations, heightened emotions, and potentially spiritual experiences.

Q: Are there any benefits to taking shrooms?

A: Shrooms have been used in therapeutic settings to treat conditions such as depression, anxiety, and addiction. They also have the potential for personal growth and spiritual insights.

Q: What precautions should I take when using shrooms?

A: It is important to take shrooms in a safe environment, with trusted individuals, and at an appropriate dosage. It is also recommended to seek professional guidance and be aware of potential risks and contraindications.

Q: How long do the effects of shrooms last and how long do they stay in the body?

A: The duration of shroom effects can vary, but typically lasts around 4-6 hours. The compounds can stay in the body for a few days but are usually not detectable in standard drug tests.

Q: How can I integrate the shroom experience into my life?

A: It is important to reflect on and make meaning of the shroom experience. Journaling, seeking support, and incorporating insights into daily life can help with integration and potential long-term changes.

Q: What is the legal status of shrooms and how are they perceived culturally?

A: The legal status of shrooms varies depending on the country and state. They are classified as illegal substances in many places. Culturally, shrooms have a history of traditional usage and are viewed differently in various societies.

Q: Are there alternatives or similar substances to taking shrooms?

A: Yes, there are other psychedelics and natural substances with similar effects to shrooms, such as LSD, DMT, and ayahuasca. Each substance has its own unique characteristics and considerations.