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Star Wars and psychedelics
July 19, 2023

10 Ways the Philosophy of Star Wars and Psychedelics Intersect

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The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider. Some individuals with preexisting mental health conditions should not use psychedelics. Always consult with a trained medical professional about your specific healthcare needs.

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What do Star Wars and psychedelics have to do with each other? In our favorite galaxy, far, far, away, could Yoda or Darth Vader have benefitted from psilocybin, DMT, or LSD? How different would the Skywalker saga have been if Anakin had taken a little heart-opening MDMA before his penultimate duel with Obi-wan?

These questions are impossible to answer, but are endlessly fun to speculate on. While we can’t know for sure if psychedelics influenced the creation of Star Wars in the same way they did Marvel’s roster of superhuman heroes (especially the weird origins of Doctor Strange), it’s certainly an interesting thought experiment.


In our imagined blending of universes (ours and the one depicted in Star Wars), the Jedi’s commitment to balance, harmony, and the pursuit of knowledge could have led them to explore psychedelics. By engaging with substances like psilocybin (aka magic mushrooms), Jedi and Sith might have sought to expand their consciousness and deepen their understanding of the Force. Consuming these mind-altering fungi could have facilitated profound spiritual experiences, fostering a deeper connection with the living Force (which connects and binds us all together) and enhancing their ability to sense and interpret its energies. Similarly, using LSD during meditative practices might have allowed Jedi scholars to transcend conventional perceptions and gain new insights into the cosmic nature of the Force.

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Conversely, the Sith, driven by passion, ambition, and the pursuit of personal power, could have turned to psychedelics to amplify their dark emotions and embrace their desires. The consumption of substances like the lesser-known but potent psychedelic, 2C-B, with its capacity to intensify emotions, could have served the Sith’s purpose by heightening feelings of passion. Or maybe they could have dabbled with reality-warping compounds like DMT, using it as a gateway to visit strange dark beings in far-off realities. In this altered state, Sith practitioners might have delved deeper into the dark side of the Force, forging a more potent connection and further fueling their belief in domination and control.

Furthermore, the powerful hallucinogenic compound DMT could have allowed Sith to venture into otherworldly realms, encountering entities that reinforced their commitment to the path of darkness. Or, they may have had an empathetic experience, causing them to re-evaluate their binary views and devotion to the Dark Side. On the other side of the Star Wars and psychedelics thought experiment, the Jedi may be able to use DMT to tap into the living force and interact with the force ghosts of ancient masters or the Prime Jedi.

While the influence of psychedelics on Jedi and Sith philosophy remains purely speculative and is not explored in the official canon, contemplating their potential impact adds fascinating tidbits to the already rich tapestry of Star Wars. It invites us to reflect on the diverse paths to enlightenment (and corruption) within the Force, opening up a realm of endless possibilities and encouraging us to ponder the interplay between consciousness, perception, and the profound forces that shape the galaxy’s destiny.

With that in mind, here are ten ways we think the philosophy of Star Wars and psychedelics intersect.

Exploring the Intersection of Star Wars and Psychedelics


Expanded Consciousness

Jedi expanded consciousness
Psychedelics are known to induce altered states of consciousness, allowing individuals to explore their inner selves and expand their awareness. Similarly, the Force in Star Wars represents a metaphysical energy that can be tapped into through deep introspection and heightened consciousness. This could apply to both the Jedi and Sith, as either of these Force-based religions have paths to transcendence through the Force.(1)

Mindful Presence

Both Jedi philosophy and psychedelic therapy emphasize the importance of being fully present at the moment. Psychedelics can enhance mindfulness and dissolve the ego, leading to a deeper connection with the present, much like the Jedi’s focus on mindfulness and living in the now.(2)

Spiritual Awakening

Ahsoka Tano meditating
Psychedelics have been associated with profound spiritual experiences and can facilitate spiritual growth and awakening. Similarly, the Jedi’s journey involves spiritual development, seeking a higher purpose and connection to something greater than themselves. Conversely, some psychedelics, like 2C-B, are known to enhance feelings of passion. This could facilitate a Sith acolyte’s connection to the dark side of the force.(3)

Transcendence of Duality

divisions of light and dark
Psychedelics often dissolve the boundaries between self and others, leading to unity and interconnectedness. This mirrors the Jedi philosophy of transcending duality, recognizing the interconnectedness of all life, and rejecting the binary divisions of light and dark (particularly Gray Jedi).(4)


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Inner Shadows and the Dark Side

Dark Side of the Force
Psychedelic experiences can bring suppressed emotions and inner shadows to the surface, allowing individuals to confront and integrate them. This process resonates with the Jedi’s teachings about acknowledging and facing their own darkness to prevent it from consuming them, similar to the concept of the Dark Side of the Force. Alternatively, a Sith could use this to deepen their connection to these darker feelings and experiences, allowing them to enhance their dark side abilities.(5)

Healing and Transformation

Healing and Transformation
Psychedelic-assisted therapy has shown promise in facilitating healing and transformation in individuals with mental health issues. Similarly, the Jedi believe in the power of redemption and transformation, seeking to bring balance to the Force and assist in the healing of the galaxy. To take that further, some psychedelics, like MDMA, could provide Sith acolytes with a path back to the light side of the force thanks to its empathy-enhancing attributes.(6)


Psychedelics can help individuals remove themselves from their attachments, including material possessions, romantic or personal relationships, and ego-driven desires. This aligns with the Jedi philosophy of non-attachment, emphasizing the need to let go of personal desires and attachments to maintain a clear connection with the Force.(7)

Intuition and Trusting the Force

Jedi eye mask
Psychedelics can enhance intuition and provide individuals with insights and guidance from within. This parallels the Jedi’s and Sith’s reliance on the Force and their ability to tap into their intuition and trust in its guidance.(8)

Ethical Decision-Making

Jedi giving away the lightsaber
Psychedelic experiences often lead to heightened ethical sensitivity and introspection. Similarly, the Jedi’s code emphasizes making ethical choices and upholding justice and compassion, reflecting the importance of responsible decision-making.(9)

Collective Consciousness and Unity

Star Wars unity
Psychedelics have been associated with experiences of collective consciousness and unity, where individuals feel connected to others and the larger universe. This resonates with the Jedi’s belief in the Force’s unifying nature, which binds all living things together.(10)

While the direct impact of psychedelics on the philosophy of Jedi and Sith acolytes in the Star Wars universe remains a subject of our imaginations, contemplating their potential influence adds a new dimension to the expansive mythos. Psychedelics offer a lens through which we can explore themes of expanded consciousness, spiritual awakening, and the interconnectedness of all life—concepts deeply rooted in the Jedi and Sith philosophies.

When we entertain ideas like this, we delve into the intricate relationship between consciousness, perception, and the profound forces that shape the destiny of the Star Wars galaxy and our own. Ultimately, the impact of psychedelics on Star Wars remains an open question, inviting us to explore one of our most beloved fictional settings and the infinite cosmos of our reality.

This material is not intended as a replacement or substitute for any legal or medical advice. Always consult a medical professional about your health needs. Psychedelics are widely illegal in the United States, and readers should always be informed about local, state, and federal regulations regarding psychedelics or other drugs.

  1. Fischman, L. G. (2022). Knowing and being known: Psychedelic–assisted psychotherapy and the sense of authenticity. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 13. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2022.933495
  2. Nayak, S. M., & Griffiths, R. R. (2022). A Single Belief-Changing Psychedelic Experience Is Associated With Increased Attribution of Consciousness to Living and Non-living Entities. Frontiers in Psychology, 13. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2022.852248
  3. Nour, M. M., Evans, L., Nutt, D., & Carhart-Harris, R. L. (2016). Ego-Dissolution and Psychedelics: Validation of the Ego-Dissolution Inventory (EDI). Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 10(269). https://doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2016.00269
  4. Payne, J. E., Chambers, R., & Liknaitzky, P. (2021). Combining Psychedelic and Mindfulness Interventions: Synergies to Inform Clinical Practice. ACS Pharmacology & Translational Science, 4(2), 416–423. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsptsci.1c00034
  5. Pokorny, T., Preller, K. H., Kometer, M., Dziobek, I., & Vollenweider, F. X. (2017a). Effect of Psilocybin on Empathy and Moral Decision-Making. International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, 20(9), 747–757. https://doi.org/10.1093/ijnp/pyx047
  6. Shulgin, A. T., & Shulgin, A. (2019). Pihkal : a chemical love story. Transform Press.
  7. Pokorny, T., Preller, K. H., Kometer, M., Dziobek, I., & Vollenweider, F. X. (2017b). Effect of Psilocybin on Empathy and Moral Decision-Making. International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, 20(9), 747–757. https://doi.org/10.1093/ijnp/pyx047
  8. Psychedelics as Catalysts of Spiritual Development. (n.d.). The Beckley Foundation. https://www.beckleyfoundation.org/psychedelics-as-catalysts-of-spiritual-development/
  9. Roseman, L., Nutt, D. J., & Carhart-Harris, R. L. (2018). Quality of Acute Psychedelic Experience Predicts Therapeutic Efficacy of Psilocybin for Treatment-Resistant Depression. Frontiers in Pharmacology, 8(974). https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2017.00974
  10. Wentorp, P. (2020, August 28). The MIND Blog | Psilocybin and Emotional Reconnection. MIND Foundation. https://mind-foundation.org/psilocybin-emotional-reconnection/ 

    • David Connell
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