Though not a cure-all, Bill Wilson, co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, believed that LSD had the potential to help people rid themselves of their alcohol addiction.
Wilson, himself, used LSD in controlled settings while building AA from the ground up. After his first experience with LSD in 1956, he reportedly said “I don’t believe [LSD] has any miraculous property of transforming spiritually and emotionally sick people into healthy ones overnight. It can set up a shining goal on the positive side, after all, it is only a temporary ego-reducer. The vision and insights given by LSD could create a large incentive – at least in a considerable number of people.”
Then, later, to one of his associates, Gerald Heard, he wrote “I am certain that the LSD experiment has helped me very much. I find myself with a heightened color perception and an appreciation of beauty almost destroyed by my years of depression.”
Wilson, however, was forced to keep his experiences with LSD quiet because of the legal implications at the time (LSD was made illegal by the US government shortly after experiments began with it) as well as a prejudicial belief that permeated AA culture, thinking that ANY mind altering substance would cause a relapse into addiction.
Wilson knew that different substances had different effects on the brain and not everything one would ingest would cause addiction.
A 1984 paper published by AA World Services, called Pass It On, read "as word of Bill’s activities reached the fellowship there were inevitable repercussions. Most AAs were violently opposed to his experimenting with a mind-altering substance. LSD was then totally unfamiliar, poorly researched, and entirely experimental – and Bill was taking it."
Now that more information is known, it is more widely understood that many psychotropics, if used right, can help the brain to control itself and many people have used drugs like ayahuasca, LSD and ibogaine to break addictions to food and other dangerous drugs.