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Junkie Prophet

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The use of drugs, hallucinogens or other trance-inducing behaviour to invoke Dreaming of Things to Come. Truth in Television — its use, if not its effectiveness — as many people past and present have associated hallucinations with spiritual experiences.

Sub-Trope of Higher Understanding Through Drugs, may overlap with Fainting Seer or Artistic Stimulation. The consequence of seeing the Mushroom Samba as Serious Business. Long term abuse may turn you into a Mad Oracle.

Contrast Medicate the Medium, when someone with extranormal sensitivity is medicated to suppress their "hallucinations".


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    Films — Live-Action 
  • Dogma: Bethany ends up recruiting Jay and Silent Bob after the Metatron tells her that she'll meet two prophets and do so only because Jay starts complaining that they won't get any "profits" where they were and they were heading back to Jersey, where she needed to be. They barely do any "propheting" like when Jay suggests they just tell the bishop to stop the ceremony. Jay does give Bethany a huge clue that God is stuck inside "John Doe Jersey", a comatose homeless man, that leads to saving the world.
  • From Hell: Inspector Abberline has opium-induced psychic visions.
  • The Hallelujah Trail: "Oracle" (of course) is able to prophesy with the help of a taste of booze. The catch is that liquor is in short supply in his small town, and he's prophesying about the arrival of a shipment — and how they need to make sure the Indians don't steal it or the temperance workers destroy it. Notably, every time he takes a drink, a heavenly chorus is heard just before he speaks.
  • Hercules (2014): While describing a vision, one of his mercenary allies, Autolycus, snarks: "If you're going to keep using those strange herbs, at least share."
  • Minority Report: The Precogs or "Oracles" have premonitions only while sleeping, so they are kept on heavy doses of drugs so that they're in a perpetual sleepy trance. Many Precogs are also the children of drug addicts, their powers arising from their parents' experiments with new strains of narcotics at the time of conception/during pregnancy.
  • Push: Cassie uses alcohol to increase her abilities as a Watcher. The catch: she's twelve.
  • Scotland, PA (a modernized adaptation of Macbeth) has the three witches portrayed as stoned bohemians.

  • "Aryans and Absinthe": Karl learns that he can see the future when consuming absinthe. After his attempt to assassinate Hitler fails due to the interference of a friend obsessed with novel social phenomenon, he realizes that his friend similarly sees the future in this manner...
  • Bad Prince Charlie: Charlie goes to see an oracle who turns out to be a very naked and very stoned young woman, who talks and acts like the stereotype of The Stoner.
  • Coyote Kings of the Space Age Bachelor Pad: An addled steampunker is given crack distilled from the glands of other crack users in order to make him one of these.
  • Dune: The Spice induces psychic abilities when consumed, among other things.
  • Good Omens: Inverted. Rather than consuming drugs to produce visions, prophets have a tendency to turn to drugs in an attempt to stay sane with all the visions they get. The author of the Book of Revelation is specifically said to have had a mushroom habit.
  • In The Gunslinger, Roland takes mescaline before seeing the "speaking demon".
  • One Nation, Under Jupiter: The oracle at the Temple of Apollo.
  • Shaman Blues: Karl experimented with drugs since he was teenager, causing quite a lot of problems for him. When he was forty, he found out that he's a shaman and as such he can see and interact with spirits, only in Doraverse, shamans must drug themselves in order to access this abilities. They do this instinctively, thus explaining Witkacy's problems.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire, the warlocks of the Undying of Qarth drink an intoxicating concoction known as "shade of the evening" to the extent that it stains their skin blue. It's unclear whether they believe this to grant them their powers, or whether it's simply a ritual act.
  • Tales of the Branion Realm: Seers do this a lot, making half-poisonous potions with deadly fantasy plants. The sovereign takes one at his coronation ceremony. One Seer becomes addicted, taking the potions for medical purposes after coming down with a disease.
  • Under the Dome: Chef Bushey becomes a junkie prophet while suffering a meth seizure, and the town's third selectwoman does the same while coming off of Oxycontin. Granted, Chef's prophecy is self-fulfilling...

    Live-Action TV 
  • Battlestar Galactica (2003): Colonial oracles use a drug called chamalla, when President Laura Roslin starts taking it to treat her cancer she interprets her hallucinations as visions from the gods.
  • Dracula (2013): A pair of Seers operate out of a 19th-century London Opium Den and make liberal use of the local product while performing their scrying (and before, and after). Whether it's an indulgence or an aid to their work isn't specified.
  • Dragnet has an episode called, you guessed it, "The Prophet", which features an LSD user and his 'Temple of the Expanded Mind'.
  • Heroes: The famous comic book artist/writer Isaac Mendez uses heroin to access his precognition. He later goes clean and learns to use his power sans drugs.
  • Misfits: Curtis normally has Mental Time Travel abilities which only work backwards, but a power-reversing Fantastic Drug gives him a vision of the future.

    Tabletop Games 
  • BattleTech: Clan Goliath Scorpion is known to use a narcotic synthesized from their totem animal's venom, known as Necrosia. This is used as either a combat drug or as a means of finding secrets pertaining to the long-lost Star League.
  • Warhammer: Night Goblin Shamans consume vast quantities of hallucinogenic mushrooms to power their spells and out of cultural habit alike. This is something of a double-edged sword, as eating too many magic fungi risks turning the shaman into a giant, magically saturated mushroom — which, since this particular breed of Shamanshrooms are highly coveted by still-mobile goblin shamans, also risks the unfortunate shaman being Eaten Alive.
  • Warhammer: Age of Sigmar has Fungoid Cave-Shamans, Grots who consume huge amounts of hallucinogenic mushrooms to see visions of the future. This being a fantasy setting, it kind of works, although it drives them insane even by greenskin standards and causes their bodies to become partially mushroom-based.

    Video Games 
  • Fallout 4: Mama Murphy is a psyker gifted with "The Sight", and can gain prophetic visions through the use of chems. By feeding her habit, she can give the protagonist certain hints about the main plot, even giving them information that would let them bypass certain quests and obstacles. Too many chems, however, will kill her. Alternatively, you can talk her into giving up Chems altogether at the cost of her abilities.
  • Brin, a shaman from Horizon Zero Dawn, drinks the "blood" of the machine animals to gain his visions. Despite the negative effects it has on his health, he is able to give out surprisingly accurate visions.
  • Katana ZERO features Chronos, a drug that causes the user to see into the future. The Player Character takes it to have Combat Clairvoyance.
  • Misericorde: Darcy is a nun and self-proclaimed "alchevisionist" who tries to induce visions from God by whipping up various experimental concoctions.
  • The Park: Lorraine Maillard finds a jar of antidepressant medication which she claims are hers, and — possibly in an attempt to regain some control over her apparent descent into madness — takes some. She immediately begins hallucinating: most of the things she witnesses are just mild exaggerations of the things she's seen so far, but when she finds the newspaper clipping on the child found dismembered behind the cotton candy stand, it's been rearranged into complete gibberish: "Beaumont will come to the island, bearing the talisman, and he will shatter the seals that bind the orthodoxy of corruption", among other things. It turns out that Lorraine is actually a latent psychic, and that "gibberish" was actually a distorted prediction of events from The Secret World, including the activities of the game's Starter Villain, Freddy Beaumont.
  • The Secret World: Rada Nastase occasionally strays into this territory; already heavily medicated by her caretaker in order to stop her from running away, Rada's habit of washing down the pills with wine results in her blurting out deeply hidden secrets. Some of these are things that she could have theoretically witnessed in passing — the vampires gathering up at the castle, for example. However, one snippet of overheard dialogue features her somehow predicting what appear to be the events of the apocalypse, making references to "black-eyed angels", "metamorphosis", and a "signal".

    Western Animation 

    Real Life 
  • The Oracle of Delphi has been suggested by some researchers to become intoxicated off of the volcanic fumes within the region. In particular, geologists J.Z. De Boer and J.R. Hale found evidence in 2000 that ethylene gas could have been present at the site of the Temple of Apollo, which can have mind-altering properties at higher doses. This hypothesis has since been disputed, however, as other researchers have argued that ethylene would not have been present at high enough concentrations to induce visual or auditory hallucinations.
  • Traditional shamans in many historical and some modern cultures often use various ethnobotanicals, such as psilocybin mushrooms, ayahuasca, and peyote to induce transcendent states for spiritual purposes.
  • The ancient, Vedic ("Indo-Aryan") inhabitants of India used "soma' to feel at one with the universe and induce some fairly wacky visions, if the poems they left behind are any indication. (Note that nobody knows from which plant, or what else, soma comes from. However you know now where Aldous Huxley got an inspiration from.)
  • There's a theory that Aztec Mythology was full of feathered snakes and corn- or snake-headed deities and heart-ripping directly because of the amounts of mescaline and mushrooms (of the magic variety) their priests were using to induce visions. The heart-ripping probably caused by a horror trip.
  • Aleister Crowley was by all reasonable measurements, a complete heroin/cocaine junkie. He did, however, found a religion, Thelema, and promote it. There are still Thelemites around today, too.
  • Philip K. Dick went through some pretty strange epiphanies after a heroic dosage of sodium pentothal. See The Religious Experience of Philip K. Dick (illustrated by Robert Crumb).
  • Dr. Timothy Leary is a Real Life example from the Hippie Era. He coined the phrase "Turn on, tune in, drop out" and was a major promoter of the spiritual use of LSD. His advocates included many '60s and '70s counterculture icons, including The Beatles.
  • Olga Bogdashina saw similarity between Aldous Huxley's experiences with mescaline and the heightened sensory perceptions of people with autism in Autism and the Edges of the Known World. And later in the same book she states that some autistics can appear to be precognitive due to their senses and subconscious perceptions, similar to dogs barking before an earthquake. One can draw the conclusion that mescaline may be able to grant prospective intuition, though the hallucinations would be problematic.
  • There is the possibility through archaelogical study of the Middle East that the ancient Hebrews may have used cannabis in their incense burning to God and in their anointing oil.