A personal narrative and guide to the safe, responsible use of MDMA for personal healing and social transformation
• Details the author’s 50 years of responsible experimentation with mind-altering substances and how Ecstasy has helped him become a better therapist
• Explains how he and his wife found Ecstasy to be the key to renewing and enriching their lives and marriage as they entered their senior years
• Describes what the experience actually feels like and provides protocols for the safe, responsible, recreational, and celebrational use of MDMA for individuals and groups
In a world that keeps us separate from each other, MDMA is the chemical of connection. Aptly known in popular culture as “Ecstasy,” MDMA helps us rediscover our own true loving nature, often obscured by the traumas of life. On its way to becoming a prescription medication due to groundbreaking research on its use to treat PTSD, Ecstasy can offer benefits for all adult life stages, from 20-somethings to seniors.
In this memoir and guide to safe use, Charles Wininger, a licensed psychoanalyst and mental health counselor, details the countless ways that Ecstasy has helped him become a better therapist and husband. He recounts his coming of age in the 1960s counterculture, his 50 years of responsible experimentation with mind-altering substances, and his immersion in the new psychedelic renaissance. He explains how he and his wife found Ecstasy to be the key to renewing and enriching their lives as they entered their senior years. It also strengthened the bonds of their marriage.
Countering the fearful propaganda that surrounds this drug, Wininger describes what the experience actually feels like and explores the value of Ecstasy and similar substances for helping psychologically healthy individuals live a more “optimal” life. He provides protocols for the responsible, recreational, and celebrational use of MDMA, including how to perfect the experience, maximize the benefits and minimize the risks, and how it may not be for everyone. He reveals how MDMA has revitalized his marriage, both erotically and emotionally, and describes how pleasure, fun, and joy can be profound bonding and transformative experiences.
Revealing MDMA’s versatility when it comes to bringing lasting renewal, pleasure, and inspiration to one’s life, Wininger shows that recognizing the transformative power of happiness-inducing experiences can be the first step on the path to healing.
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Listening to Ecstasy tells the story of Charley Wininger’s relationship with MDMA, a chemical of connection, and how it helped him evolve as a therapist, husband, and human. In this love poem to MDMA, Charley personalizes a substance that many only know through research reports of MDMA’s tremendous healing potential. As a trusted elder in the psychedelic community, he shares his wisdom about how to maximize the lifeenhancing potential of MDMA while minimizing risk. In coming out of the closet as a ‘responsible recreational drug user,’ he ‘roll’ models the courage to live authentically. He challenges prohibition and the demonization of drugs, arguing for personal liberation. He argues for our right to decide on the chemistry and cognitive liberty within, rather than be at the mercy of the forces of social control. Wininger also shows us how, at any age, we can live ecstatically, sexually, and joyfully, balancing and celebrating life and having extraordinary and serious fun along the way. Finally, Charley invites us to join him and his welcoming psychedelic community in connection and love. This delightful book left me feeling inspired to create a more fulfilling life and feeling hopeful for humanity.” Andrew Tatarsky, Ph.D., founder and