Validation of the revised Mystical Experience Questionnaire in experimental sessions with psilocybin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The 30-item revised Mystical Experience Questionnaire (MEQ30) was previously developed within an online survey of mystical-type experiences occasioned by psilocybin-containing mushrooms. The rated experiences occurred on average eight years before completion of the questionnaire. The current paper validates the MEQ30 using data from experimental studies with controlled doses of psilocybin. Data were pooled and analyzed from five laboratory experiments in which participants (n=184) received a moderate to high oral dose of psilocybin (at least 20 mg/70 kg). Results of confirmatory factor analysis demonstrate the reliability and internal validity of the MEQ30. Structural equation models demonstrate the external and convergent validity of the MEQ30 by showing that latent variable scores on the MEQ30 positively predict persisting change in attitudes, behavior, and well-being attributed to experiences with psilocybin while controlling for the contribution of the participant-rated intensity of drug effects. These findings support the use of the MEQ30 as an efficient measure of individual mystical experiences. A method to score a "complete mystical experience" that was used in previous versions of the mystical experience questionnaire is validated in the MEQ30, and a stand-alone version of the MEQ30 is provided for use in future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1182-1190
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Psychopharmacology
Volume29
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2015

    Fingerprint

Keywords

  • entheogen
  • factor analysis
  • hallucinogens
  • mystical experience
  • Psilocybin
  • psychedelic
  • psychometrics
  • spiritual
  • structural equation modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this