Episode 24: The Secret History of Jews and Drugs

Was Moses tripping when he saw the burning bush? Are psychedelics the key to unlocking the mysteries behind Jewish texts? And did you hear the one about the rabbi who did LSD with Timothy Leary?  Featuring Rick Doblin founder and Executive Director of MAPS—the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies. Plus an excerpt from our friend Moshe Kasher’s comedy central show Problematic, and Rabbi David Ingber of New York’s renewal movement temple Romemu. Turn on, tune in, drop out and prepare to expand your mind with this episode of The Kibitz.

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Rick Doblin, Ph.D. (@RickDoblin), is the founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). He received his doctorate in Public Policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, where he wrote his dissertation on the regulation of the medical uses of psychedelics and marijuana and his Master's thesis on a survey of oncologists about smoked marijuana vs. the oral THC pill in nausea control for cancer patients. His undergraduate thesis at New College of Florida was a 25-year follow-up to the classic Good Friday Experiment, which evaluated the potential of psychedelic drugs to catalyze religious experiences. He also conducted a thirty-four year follow-up study to Timothy Leary's Concord Prison Experiment. Rick studied with Dr. Stanislav Grof and was among the first to be certified as a Holotropic Breathwork practitioner. His professional goal is to help develop legal contexts for the beneficial uses of psychedelics and marijuana, primarily as prescription medicines but also for personal growth for otherwise healthy people, and eventually to become a legally licensed psychedelic therapist. He founded MAPS in 1986, and currently resides in Boston with his wife and one of three children (two in college).

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Moshe Kasher (@moshekasher) Comedian. Child Genius. Jew. Jew Comedian. OBGYN. Pleasure center. Good tipper. Guiding light. Beefcake. He lives alone in LA. Featured on: NBC, E!’s Chelsea LatelyLate Night with Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s Drunk History@midnightConanCarson Daly, Showtime’s Shameless, MTV & more… Currently the Co-host of The Champspodcast and the author of the acclaimed memoir Kasher In The Rye on Grand Central Publishing. Selected as one of Variety Magazine’s “Ten Comics to Watch”, LA Times’ “Faces to Watch”, and iTunes’ “Comic of the Year”.

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David Ingber (@romemu) was named by Newsweek as one of 2013’s top 50 most influential rabbis in the United States as well as by The Forward as one of the 50 most newsworthy and notable Jews in America,  Rabbi David Ingber promotes a renewed Jewish mysticism that integrates meditative mindfulness and physical awareness into mainstream, post-modern Judaism. A major 21st Century Jewish thinker and educator, his rich perspective, open heart and mind, and full-bodied approach to Jewish learning has brought him to speak throughout the United States and worldwide throughout Canada, Europe and Israel.


Dan Crane (@dancranehere) is a journalist, musician, Jew (lax, loves lox) and retired professional air-guitarist.

He writes about culture and travel for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, California SundaySlate, and numerous other publications. 

He’s the author of “To Air is Human” and stars in the documentary, Air Guitar Nation.





Jessica Chaffin (@jessicachaffin) is an American actress, comedian, and writer perhaps best known as Ronna of the comedy duo "Ronna & Beverly." Other credits include VeepSpyThe Heat, the animated show Big Mouth out on Netflix 9/29, and the upcoming season of Search Party.