- Also known as hallucinogen, hallucinogenic drug, hallucinogenic substance, magicum, phanerothyme, pseudohallucinogen, illusinogen, mysticomimetic, psychotic, psychotomimetic, eideticum, psychedelic, psychedelic drug, and psychedelic substance. The term phantasticum comes from the Greek verb phantazestai,which means to imagine. It was introduced in or shortly before 1924 by the German pharmacologist Louis Lewin (1850-1929) to denote a group of plants considered capable of evoking cerebral excitation in the form of hallucinations and *illusions, along with other signs and symptoms of altered cerebral functioning. However, the scientific community, including Lewin himself, were not happy with the term phantasticum. Over the years, many other names were proposed to denote the group of substances which have a certain hallucinogenic potential. All the above terms are used more or less interchangeably to denote a group of chemical substances which -in relatively high doses - have the potential to alter consciousness and to evoke phenomena such as hallucinations, illusions, * sensory distortions, *delirium, loss of contact with reality, and sometimes coma and death. In 1979 the term * entheogen was proposed by the American classical scholars Carl Anton Paul Ruck (b. 1935) et al. as an alternative for these terms, so as to reinstate the original spiritual connotations of substances like these in *mysticism and shamanism. Today a person intentionally employing a phantasticum for the purpose of exploring the psyche may be called a *psychonaut. For a more detailed account of this group of substances, see the entry Hallucinogen.ReferencesLewin, L. (1924). Phantastica. Über die berauschenden, betäubenden und erregenden Genußmittel. Berlin: Verlag von Georg Stilke.Nichols, D.E. (2004). Hallucinogens. Pharmacology & Therapeutics, 101(2), 131-181.Ruck, C.A.P., Bigwood, J., Staples, R., Wasson, R.G., Ott, J. (1979). Entheogens. Journal of Psychedelic Drugs, 11, 145-146.
Dictionary of Hallucinations. J.D. Blom. 2010.