What is a psychonaut? Astronauts explore the vastness of space, aquanauts explore the ocean’s depths, and psychonauts explore the vastness and depth of the mind. Synapses flash like lightning within cumulonimbotic folds of neo-cortical gray matter; psychonauts seek the ensuing thunder.
This may conjure images of psychedelic drug use, rhythmic chanting, and Nag Champa incense. While some may attempt to discover the mysteries within using these methods, these practices represent only slices of a large and diverse pie. Psychonautics need not be synonymous with psychedelics or new age metaphysics. The psychonaut is merely an explorer of the mind and there are multiple approaches to this end, from meditation to sensory deprivation. The use of psychedelics is not a requisite component of psychonautics nor are new age philosophies. Psychonautics can be pursued as any other scientific endeavor.