Psilocybin mushrooms have been used by human societies for thousands of years, and appear in prehistoric art in Europe and Mesoamerica.
The term magic mushrooms is a generic term that includes any mushroom that contains psilocybin, a chemical compound that, when digested and transformed into psilocin, produces psychedelic experiences and an altered state of consciousness.
In low doses, these fungi can modify sensory perception, making surfaces appear twisted, overlapping visual perception with repetitive geometric shapes, altering colors, and modifying the way sounds are perceived. Hallucinogenic effects include auras around light, “breathing” surfaces, and afterimages or “traces”. In higher doses, they can produce synesthesia, a distortion in cognition of time and space, and give users the sensation of merging with the environment.