That being said, a lot of people who do meditation make exactly the same mistake as these scientific researchers. These meditators think that the Big Moments that sometimes happen during the course of meditation are the point of meditation. If that’s what you think, it’s easy to conclude that drugs might be a more efficient way of producing the same results. There are entire schools of meditation, some quite old and respected, that have enshrined the view that the purpose of meditation is to have some great moment of awakening. So it’s no surprise to find people who have approached meditation in this mistaken way concluding that “either hallucinogenics or meditation can take you to very similar, if not the same, experiences,” as Gary Weber says at the end of his article referenced above.
The core of the mistaken belief that drugs and meditation are doing the same thing is this belief that meditation is about results. But in the real world there are no results. There is only this.
It amuses me when I see people invested in the idea that not only is there some kind of absolute metaphysical truth, but that it should be exotic and otherworldly, a violently transcendent experience as if God were to stick his finger down through their skulls and stir their brains into soup. Do what you want, but whenever you guys get tired of cerebral thrillseeking, there’s wood to be chopped and water to be carried.