In one of my classes, we were asked to read a book titled "Tripping with Allah." While I did not read the book completely, there were some themes that stuck with me, one being Toxic Masculinity, and how men find themselves navigating it through drugs.

I've heard plenty of stories about people taking drugs and having some sort of Spiritual Experience, whether it be feeling some sort of energy fill them, or simply having an important and wholesome bonding moment with someone they love. A lot of the stories I hear about these experiences, come from men.

One such man did shrooms with a male friend of his and claimed it was the best thing ever. I watched as his eyes filled up with light while he talked about how they were crying, bonding, and proclaiming their love for each other.

While this experience sounds like a beautiful one, it makes me kind of sad that they probably won't have such a striking bonding experience like that while sober. It seems people often find themselves drinking, smoking, or doing drugs similar to shrooms to break the ice that has been forced upon them; to conquer that toxic masculinity if only for a moment.

I've never felt the need to do shrooms for a bonding experience because I haven't dealt with toxic masculinity in the way that masculine people do.

They are expected to be emotionless, s*x-driven, etc. Maybe this is a privilege I didn't know I had. (or maybe not, considering I have to deal with r*pe, objectification, sl*t-shaming etc. due to toxic masculinity). I find myself bonding with people through television shows, late night talks, music, and possibly crying in front of them or vice versa.

I've always been a pretty open book. I wear my emotions on my sleeve. You know if I'm angry. You know if I'm out of it. This is who I've always been. I have never felt like I had to s*ck it up, at least not as a means of fitting the mold society has unfortunately created for me.

Another thing I've figured out is that weed is most definitely not for me.

It makes me more anxious than relaxed, so maybe there's something I'm missing out on due to my genetic makeup and/or the meds I take to ease anxiety and depression. I wonder if I would rely on it more if it actually had a positive impact?

So my question is

When does a drug like shrooms become a crutch? When does it become toxic? I'm not one to believe that doing shrooms a few times or smoking weed a lot makes you addicted or anything, but there is a sort of addiction that comes with the looseness these things can provide. Now, it should be noted that using marijuana for things such as chronic pain, anxiety, and PTSD are totally fine and I support this fully.

For those who use just for fun

There is an addiction to these drugs because they often relax, and/or open a person up.

(Of course, shrooms and weed are two very different drugs, but you get the point).

What does it mean when someone is seeking out a drug to unleash a spiritual experience like in this pretty racy book "Tripping with Allah?" Is this a valid reason to take drugs? What is wrong with our society that people seek these things out to connect with other people. What is wrong when people seek these things out to connect with themselves?

I don't have an answer. But as a person who has grown up around addiction, I've seen the downfalls of relying on something as common as alcohol.