Psychedelics Today

By Psychedelics Today

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Description

A show discussing the important academic and other research in the field of Psychedelics. We discuss how psychedelics relate to human potential and healing.

Episode Date
PTSF87 – Ketamine, Addiction, and Mysticism + Kelsey Ramsden of MINDCURE
01:03:23

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle address some tweets and discuss ketamine and mysticism, then Joe interviews CEO of MINDCURE, Kelsey Ramsden, about MINDCURE's 2 main pieces: iSTRYM and the Desire Project.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Dec 03, 2021
PT275 – James Fadiman, Ph.D. – Transpersonal Psychology, Microdosing, and Your Symphony of Selves
01:22:47

In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview author, James Fadiman, Ph.D. He talks about the birth of transpersonal psychology, microdosing, and his newest book, "Your Symphony of Selves: Discover and Understand More of Who We Are."

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 30, 2021
PTSF86 – Ayahuasca, Chronic Pain, and Legal Psilocybin, with Payton Nyquvest of Numinus
48:38

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle discuss Mike Tyson and toads, then Joe and David interview Payton Nyquvest of Numinus, who talks about ayahuasca, chronic pain, integration, reciprocity, and psilocybin. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 26, 2021
PT274 – Juan Pablo Cappello – Nue Life: Using Digital Phenotyping to Personalize Healthcare
01:15:52

In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview CEO & Co-founder of Nue Life, Juan Pablo Cappello. He discusses his entrepreneurial past, the psychedelic gold rush, and how Nue Life will use digital phenotyping to personalize health.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 23, 2021
PTSF85 – Ahmad Doroudian, Ph.D. of BetterLife Pharma and Dr. Abid Nazeer of Wesana Health
01:13:33

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and David speak with CEO & Director of BetterLife Pharma, Ahmad Doroudian, about 2-Bromo-LSD, and then David interviews Chief Medical Officer at Wesana Health, Abid Nazeer. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 19, 2021
PT273 – Erica Rex – Clinical Trials and Spontaneous Mystical Experiences
01:01:28

In this episode, Joe interviews Erica Rex: writer and participant in one of the first trials using psilocybin to treat cancer-related depression. She discusses the study and tells stories of spontaneous mystical experiences.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 16, 2021
PT272 – Veterans Day 2021
01:15:02

In this episode, Joe sits down with three veteran friends for a special Veterans Day episode. They discuss the difficulties of military life, drug use, and how psychedelics have helped them transition back into civilian life.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 13, 2021
PTSF84 – A Brief Check-in From Wonderland
25:15

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle briefly check in from Miami to reflect on the Wonderland and Meet Delic conferences they just attended. They also discuss Compass Pathways' recent research outcomes.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 12, 2021
PT271 – Jeremy Narby, Ph.D. – Anthropology, Ayahuasca, and Plant Teachers
01:11:00

In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview famed anthropologist and author (most notably of The Cosmic Serpent), Jeremy Narby. He discusses anthropology in the Amazon and ayahuasca: the entourage effect, vine-only, DMT, and more. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 09, 2021
PT270 – Dr. Rachel Yehuda – Research Trials and The Future of Psychedelic Neuroscience
01:18:15

In this episode, Joe interviews Dr. Rachel Yehuda: neuroscientist, researcher, Professor and Vice Chair of Psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. She discusses research trials and the future of neuroscience.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 05, 2021
PT269 – Adam Strauss – Comedy, OCD, and The Mushroom Cure
01:33:30

In this episode, Joe interviews Adam Strauss: writer, performer, and comedian. Strauss discusses OCD and how he's learned to manage his with psilocybin, which he documents in his one-man show, "The Mushroom Cure." 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Nov 02, 2021
PTSF83 – Abuse in Psychedelics: Complicity and Groupthink
01:02:07

In this week’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle discuss their conflicts with what to do about the recent accusations of abuse against two prominent figures in this space by friend of the show, Will Hall. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 29, 2021
PT268 – Hamilton Morris – PCP, 5-MeO-DMT, and The Synthesis of New Psychedelics
01:19:35

In this episode, Joe sits down with chemist, filmmaker, and science journalist Hamilton Morris. They discuss his time at Vice, PCP, “Hamilton’s Pharmacopeia,” 5-MeO-DMT, and working with perceived enemies for the greater good. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 26, 2021
PTSF82 – Wonderland Miami, with Patrick Moher of Microdose
55:30

In this week’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe sits down with entrepreneur, veteran of the cannabis industry, and CEO at Microdose; Patrick Moher, who discusses their massive psychedelic expo, November 8-9 in Miami: Wonderland.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 22, 2021
PT267 – Rebecca Kronman, LCSW – Pregnancy, Parenthood, and Psychedelics
01:08:59

In this episode, Joe interviews Rebecca Kronman, LCSW: therapist, writer, and founder of Plant Parenthood. They discuss psychedelics and pregnancy; affinity groups; justice disparity; and how to disclose drug use to your kids. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 19, 2021
PTSF81 – Somatics, Reframing Trauma, and the 7 Lens Approach, with Liam Farquhar
01:09:23

In this week’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle interviews integration specialist and legal psychedelic guide, Liam Farquhar. They discuss trauma, somatics, IFS, consciousness, breathwork, and the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 15, 2021
PT266 – Jerry B. Brown, Ph.D. – Psychedelics: Past, Present, and Future
01:07:46

In this episode, which is a bit of an overview of our new course, Kyle interviews anthropologist, author, ethnomycologist, and co-designer of said course, "Psychedelics: Past, Present, and Future": Jerry B. Brown, Ph.D.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 12, 2021
PTSF80 – Decriminalization in Seattle, San Pedro, and The Dark Web
01:03:18

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle discuss recent decriminalization news in Seattle and Santa Cruz, the debates on how to handle mescaline-containing cacti, Hamilton Morris, prohibition, and the Dark Web. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 08, 2021
PT265 – Jessica Cadoch, MA – Cooperation, Drug Exceptionalism, and 12-step Programs
01:17:26

In this episode, Joe interviews Jessica Cadoch, MA: Medical Anthropologist and Research Manager at Maya PBC. She talks about 12-step programs and psychedelics, drug exceptionalism, and cooperation between non- and for-profits.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 05, 2021
PTSF79 - Psychedelic Facilitator Abuse and Space Holding Ethics with Dr. Ido Cohen
01:20:32

In this week’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle Buller discusses Hulu’s show, Nine Perfect Strangers with previous guest, Dr. Ido Cohen.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Oct 01, 2021
PT264 – Gibrán Rivera – Group Process, Self-sovereignty, and Rethinking Masculinity
01:34:57

In this episode, Joe interviews teacher, coach, facilitator, and podcaster, Gibrán Rivera. They talk about the importance and benefits of group process, the spectrum of healing, and the poles of masculinity and femininity. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 28, 2021
PTSF78 – Navigating the Vast Psychedelic Space: Where Do You Fit In?
55:29

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and tackle a question we are often asked at Psychedelics Today: "How do I get involved in the psychedelic field?"  

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 24, 2021
PT263 – Michelle Janikian – 920: The Magic Mushroom Holiday
01:10:44

In this episode, Joe and Kyle celebrate 9/20 by talking with friend, writer, and Editor in Chief of the blog, Michelle Janikian. She talks about rituals, reconnection to family, and her book, Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 20, 2021
PTSF77 – Progress and Context, with Jesse Gould of Heroic Hearts Project
01:13:35

In this week’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle are joined by Founder and President of the Heroic Hearts Project, Jesse Gould. They discuss veterans, PTSD, Afghanistan, SB519, Measure 109, and the importance of context. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 17, 2021
PT262 – Carlene MacMillan, M.D. – Set, Setting, and Systems: Adding Insurance to the Conversation
01:04:21

In this episode, Kyle interviews psychiatrist, co-founder/CEO of Brooklyn Minds, and co-host of the Clubhouse show, New Frontiers: Carlene MacMillan, M.D. They discuss Spravato, insurance, and the importance of infrastructure. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 14, 2021
PTSF76 – Spiritual Emergence and Healing
55:41

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down for a discussion spanning spiritual emergence, the transpersonal, and a simple but huge question around psychedelics and self-work: What exactly is healing?

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 10, 2021
PT261 – Dr. Tiago Reis Marques – Ketamine, New Drugs, and the Repurposing of Current Drugs
01:00:11

In this episode, Joe interviews Dr. Tiago Reis Marques: Psychiatrist at the Maudsley Hospital, lecturer, and CEO of Pasithea; a biotech company developing new drugs, repurposing old ones, and offering at-home ketamine infusions.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 07, 2021
PTSF75 – Possession Limits, Religion, and Scalability
57:56

In this episode, Joe and Kyle reflect on the birth of Solidarity Fridays, discuss SB-519, possession limits, and Decriminalize Nature, analyze religion, and dig into the scalability of drugs vs. its effect on the environment. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Sep 03, 2021
PT260 – Benjamin Mudge – Ayahuasca and Bipolar: Pathways to a Protocol
01:36:54

In this episode, Michelle and Kyle interview PhD candidate and return guest, Benjamin Mudge (PTSF59), who talks about the challenges and possible paths forward to creating an ayahuasca protocol for people with bipolar disorder. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 31, 2021
PTSF74 – A Response: Decriminalize Nature, SB-519, and MAPS
01:01:22

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle respond to a barrage of negative comments from Decriminalize Nature and some of their supporters from a recent Instagram post promoting PTSF74 with Ismail L. Ali from MAPS.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 27, 2021
PT259 – Dr. Devon Christie and Will Siu, MD, DPhil – The Mind-Body Connection, MDMA, and Chronic Pain
01:20:44

In this episode, Kyle interviews Dr. Devon Christie and Will Siu, MD, DPhil, co-investigators on a study investigating MDMA-assisted therapy for fibromyalgia. They talk the mind-body connection, fascia, somatics, and PTSD. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 24, 2021
PTSF73 – Origin Stories, Complexity, and Transpersonal Psychology
01:16:41

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle talk about the origins of Psychedelics Today, breathwork, transpersonal psychology, reincarnation, healing as a side effect of exploration, archetypal astrology, and more!

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 20, 2021
PT258 – Manesh Girn – Psychedelics and the Brain: Neuroplasticity and Creativity
01:07:34

In this episode, Kyle and Michelle interview Manesh Girn: Ph.D. candidate in Neuroscience. They discuss neuroplasticity and how psychedelics affect the neurocognitive processes behind thought, flexibility, and creativity. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 17, 2021
PTSF72 – Breaking Down SB-519, with MAPS’ Ismail L. Ali
01:04:18

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle are joined by lawyer and lead Policy Council at MAPS, Ismail L. Ali, who digs into SB-519 in great depth: how MAPS has been involved, why the bill has changed, and more!

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 13, 2021
PT257 – Robin Divine – Black People Trip
01:09:00

In this episode, Michelle and Joe interview Robin Divine: writer and creator of Black People Trip: an online community with a mission to raise awareness and create safe spaces for Black women interested in psychedelics. 

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 10, 2021
PTSF71 – Sexual Ethics in Psychedelics and Mistrust of Big Pharma
01:13:22

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle discuss Michael Pollan's books, Numinus, opium, The Psychae Institute, sexual ethics within the facilitator-experiencer relationship, and our mistrust of big pharma.

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 06, 2021
PT256 – Matthew D. Segall, Ph.D. – Consciousness, Capitalism, and Philosophy
01:10:45

In this episode, Joe interviews author and assistant professor in Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness at the California Institute of Integral Studies, Matthew Segall. They discuss consciousness, philosophy, and capitalism. 

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 03, 2021
PTSF70 – Depth Psychology, The Reach of the DEA, and Progress in the Northeast
01:05:04

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and David discuss depth psychology, James Hillman, the idea of attempting to measure soul with science, the reach of the DEA, Soul Quest, psilocybin, lawmaking progress, and more.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 30, 2021
PT255 – Jasmine Virdi – Conservation, Covid, and Neurodivergence
01:02:14

In this episode, Joe interviews psychedelic-focused freelance writer Jasmine Virdi, who has written for PT and Chacruna. They talk about peyote conservation, 5-MeO-DMT, Covid, environmental impact, neurodivergence, and more.  

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 27, 2021
PTSF69 – Well-being and Working With Weirdness
01:25:35

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and David review SB-519 again, discuss a study that measured increased well-being and the difficulty of how to define that, and talk about the importance of embracing the weird.

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 23, 2021
PT254 – Daniel Moler – San Pedro, Comic Books, and Finding Your Flow
01:14:49

In this episode, Joe interviews Daniel Moler: creator of the Psychonaut Presents comic series, which delves into his experiences with ayahuasca and San Pedro. He discusses shamanism, the Pachakuti Mesa Tradition, and more!

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 20, 2021
PTSF68 – Neuroplasticity, Michael Pollan, and DMT, with Manesh Girn
01:19:50

In this week's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Michelle, Kyle, and David are joined by Ph.D. candidate in Neuroscience, Manesh Girn, to talk about neuroplasticity, Michael Pollan's recent op-ed, Senate Bill 519, DMT, and more!

 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 16, 2021
PT253 – Sean Hinton Ph.D. – Culture, Research Limitations, and Non-Medical Paths Forward
01:11:43

In this episode, Joe interviews psychologist and adjunct professor at Capella University, Dr. Sean Hinton, about problems with current research, Timothy Leary, and how we integrate drugs into society outside the medical model.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 13, 2021
PTSF67 – Psilocybin, Power, and Patents
01:24:04

In this week's Solidarity Friday episode, Joe, Michelle, Kyle, and newest PT team member David Drapkin talk about a recent psilocybin for depression study, the DEA fighting the Right to Try Act, patents, IP, peyote, and more.



www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 09, 2021
PT252 – Joel Lambert – Ibogaine, 5-MeO-DMT, and The Warrior Tradition
01:28:51

In this episode, Joe interviews former Navy SEAL turned actor and TV host, Joel Lambert. He talks about the toll 10 years as a Navy SEAL took on his brain and tells the story of what brought him back: ibogaine and 5-MeO-DMT.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 06, 2021
PTSF66 – Philosophical Critiques, Legalization Updates, and Inclusive Research
01:13:45

In this week's Solidarity Friday episode, Joe, Michelle, and Kyle read some email, talk about the importance of critiquing, give several legalization updates (yay Mexico and CT), and discuss inclusivity in therapy and research.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 02, 2021
PT251 – Kristina & Jonas of the Psychedelic Literacy Fund – Celebrating Stan Grof
01:06:57

In this episode, released on Stan Grof's 90th birthday, Joe interviews Kristina & Jonas of the Psychedelic Literacy Fund, a donor-advised fund that finances the translation of classic psychedelic books into different languages.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jul 01, 2021
PT250 – Matt Ball – New Frameworks For Schizophrenia, Dissociation, and Suicidal Ideation
01:29:08

In this episode, Joe interviews psychiatric nurse practitioner Matt Ball about different frameworks for viewing dissociation, schizophrenia, and suicidal ideation: What can we learn from the need to be in these extreme states?

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jun 29, 2021
PTSF65 - Navigating Psychedelics for Clinicians and Therapists, and Nitrous Oxide for Depression
01:23:17
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Michelle interviews Joe and Kyle about our famous "Navigating Psychedelics for Clinicians and Therapists" course, and they discuss a trial on nitrous oxide as a treatment for depression. 
 
Jun 25, 2021
PT249 – Hadas Alterman, Serena Wu, and Adriana Kertzer of Plant Medicine Law Group
01:08:24

In this episode, Joe interviews Hadas Alterman, Serena Wu, and Adriana Kertzer of Plant Medicine Law Group, a cannabis and psychedelic-minded law firm. They discuss their paths to each other and psychedelics, religion, and more.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jun 22, 2021
PTSF64 - The First Woman to Take Acid, The Drug Policy Reform Act, and Indigenous Language Extinction
01:04:20

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Michelle, and Kyle talk about the first woman to take acid, Senate Bill 519, a new all-drug decriminalization bill, drug testing, and the dangers of losing Indigenous language.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jun 18, 2021
PT248 – Pierre Bouchard – Somatic Therapy, Trauma, and the Nervous System
01:16:41

In this episode, Kyle interviews licensed counselor specializing in somatics and ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, Pierre Bouchard. They dig deep into somatics, the polyvagal theory, and how trauma affects the nervous system.

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Jun 15, 2021
PTSF63 - The Media and Legalization, Joints for Jabs, and 40,000 Ecstasy Pills
01:16:01
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Michelle, and Kyle discuss how the media keeps using “legalized” instead of “decriminalized,” Washington’s Joints For Jabs program, and a man who may have eaten 40,000 ecstasy tablets.
 
Jun 11, 2021
PT247 – Julian Vayne – Magic, Prohibition, and New Models for Legality
01:23:26
In this episode, Joe interviews author, psychedelic facilitator, and renowned British occultist, Julian Vayne. He talks prohibition, magic, and legality, and tells his story of being banned from the Oxford Psychedelic Society. 
 
Jun 08, 2021
PTSF62 - Senate Bill 519, Ketamine, and Psilocybin-producing Cicadas
01:15:36
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Michelle, and Kyle discuss California’s SB519 passing the senate, the government opening up cannabis access for researchers, and zombified, sex-crazed cicadas that produce psilocybin. 
 
Jun 04, 2021
PT246 - Amber and Marcus Capone of VETS - Foundational Healing and the Brain
01:15:16
In this episode, Joe interviews Amber and Marcus Capone, co-founders of Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS), a charity that provides foundational healing grants to help veterans heal with ibogaine and 5-MeO-DMT.  
 
Jun 01, 2021
PTSF61 – Archetypal Astrology and the Inner Healer, with Renn Butler
01:04:57
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Michelle, and Kyle are joined by author and holotropic breathwork facilitator, Renn Butler. They talk about archetypal astrology, the concept of the inner healer, and some news too. 
 
May 28, 2021
PT245 – Robin Carhart-Harris – Psychedelics, Entropy, and Plasticity
01:09:56
In this episode, Michelle and Kyle interview legendary psychedelic researcher, Robin Carhart-Harris. They talk about brain imaging, entropy, trauma, HPPD, plasticity vs. canalization, concretization, germ theory, DMT, and more!
 
May 25, 2021
PTSF60 – Representation and Access, with Elan Hagens and Rebecca Martinez of Fruiting Bodies Collective
01:13:19
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Michelle and Kyle interview Elan Hagens and Rebecca Martinez, Health Equity subcommittee members for Oregon’s Measure 109 and co-founders of podcast/media site, Fruiting Bodies Collective. 
 
May 21, 2021
PT244 – Mark Haberstroh – Mushrooms, Retreat Centers, and Safety
01:34:02
In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview mushroom enthusiast Mark Haberstroh, who talks about realizing his spiritual path and what he's learned from working at more psychedelic retreat centers than anyone Joe knows.  
 
May 18, 2021
PTSF59 – Psychedelics and Bipolar, with Benjamin Mudge
01:31:07
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Michelle, Kyle, and Joe are joined by Benjamin Mudge. Mudge is bipolar and has used ayahuasca to keep himself off pharmaceutical drugs, and he thinks others can safely follow his lead. 
 
May 14, 2021
PT243 – Dr. Fernando Espi Forcen and Dr. Franklin King of MGH’s Center for the Neuroscience of Psychedelics
01:38:25
In this episode, Joe interviews Doctors Fernando Espi Forcen and Franklin King of MGH’s Center for the Neuroscience of Psychedelics about the center’s roots, their goals, and their thoughts on the future of psychiatry. 
 
May 11, 2021
PTSF58 - Liberty, The Power of Therapy, and Mushrooms in Maine
01:16:43

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Michelle, Kyle, and Joe discuss Maine’s proposal for legal psilocybin therapy, MAPS’ Phase 3 MDMA trial, therapy, money, and a recent "100 Most Influential People in Psychedelics" list.  

www.psychedelicstoday.com

May 07, 2021
PT242 - Gary Laderman - Religion: Sex, Death, and Drugs
01:13:13
In this episode, Joe interviews author of "Don’t Think About Death: A Memoir on Mortality,” Gary Laderman, about expanding the scope of what we view as “religious,” and how religion affects our views on sex, death, and drugs.
 
May 04, 2021
PTSF57 - New Compounds, Psychedelic Business, and Neurogenesis
01:00:20
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe talk about new compounds, new legalization bills in Texas and Louisiana, Leonard Pickard, Alzheimer’s disease, the tragedy of the commons, and the importance of fringe cases.
 

Apr 30, 2021
PTSF57 - New Compounds, Psychedelic Business, and Neurogenesis
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe talk about new compounds, new legalization bills in Texas and Louisiana, Leonard Pickard, Alzheimer’s disease, the tragedy of the commons, and the importance of fringe cases.
 
Apr 30, 2021
PT241 - Tyler Chandler and Nick Meyers of “Dosed”: Iboga and The Opioid Crisis
01:02:15
In this episode, Joe is joined by Tyler Chandler and Nick Meyers a year after they released their very powerful documentary, "Dosed.” They talk about its creation and response, iboga, the drug war, and the opioid crisis.
 

Apr 27, 2021
PTSF56- Data vs. Spin, with Tim Cools of Psychedelic Experience
01:16:14
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Kyle, and Michelle are joined by Tim Cools of Psychedelicexperience.net. They talk about 5-MeO-DMT and how even medical journals can put a spin on their published studies. 
 
www.psychedelicstoday.com
Apr 23, 2021
PT240 - Ralph Blumenthal - Alien Abductions and The Believer
01:30:02
In this episode, Michelle and Joe interview Ralph Blumenthal, author of "The Believer: Alien Encounters, Hard Science, and the Passion of John Mack,” about Mack's work and its relation to psychedelics (beyond being trippy).
 

Apr 20, 2021
PTSF55 - Creativity, Group Ceremony, and Astral Projection
54:11
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Kyle, and Michelle discuss recent legalization wins, psilocybin and creativity, ceremonial ayahuasca use and group benefit, and the CIA, astral projection, and the missing page 25. 
 

Apr 16, 2021
PT239 - Richie Ogulnick - Ibogaine, Unicity, and Beneficence
01:01:50
In this episode, Joe interviews Richie Ogulnick, a facilitator/guide who has been helping clients through ibogaine experiences for 27 years. They talk about his practice, different methodologies, intentions, and why iboga works.
 

Apr 13, 2021
PTSF54 - Theft, Patents, and Ethical Psychedelic Companies
56:35
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe, Kyle, and Michelle discuss California’s statewide decriminalization effort, patents, provider information theft, and how psychedelic companies can be ethical in a capitalistic world.  
 

Apr 09, 2021
PT238 - Kile Ortigo - Integration and Existential Exploration
01:15:16
In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview clinical psychologist and author, Kile Ortigo, about trauma, healthcare burnout, Jung, mythology in movies, and ways different therapeutic modalities can better handle integration. 
 

Apr 06, 2021
PTSF53 - Psychedelics and Creativity, with Laura Dawn
01:18:53
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe interviews microdose mentor, entrepreneur, author, and retreat leader, Laura Dawn. They talk about creativity and how psychedelics can foster creative thinking and problem-solving.
 

Apr 02, 2021
PT237 - Dena Justice - Finding the Frequency of Safety
01:37:33
In this episode, Joe interviews 4-time guest Dena Justice, who is using this episode to come out of the psychedelic closet in a big way, discussing the lessons learned about safety from years of powerful psychedelic experiences.
 

Mar 30, 2021
PTSF52 - Start Low, Go Slow
01:23:59
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle, Joe, and Michelle discuss Carl Hart, the drug war and truth, another study showcasing the placebo effect, mushrooms, and if scientists will be able to predict psychedelic outcomes.
 

Mar 26, 2021
PT236 - Dr. Carl Hart - Drugs: Honesty, Responsibility, and Logic
01:49:27
In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview author of Drug Use for Grownups, Dr. Carl Hart. They talk about the drug war, coming out of the closet, drug exceptionalism, responsible drug use, and fighting inaccuracies with logic.  
 

Mar 23, 2021
PTSF51 - Miracle Cures, Money, and Standing on the Shoulders of Giants
01:10:21
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle, Joe, and Michelle discuss the problems with psychedelics being touted as “miracle cures,” and Tim Ferriss and David Bronner's concerns over Compass Pathways' recent patent-filing. 
 

Mar 19, 2021
PT235 - The Entheo Society of Washington - Dismantling Power Systems Through Decriminalization
01:13:51
In this episode, Joe interviews Leo Russell, Monique Bridges, Malika Lamont, Tatiana, and Solana Booth of the Entheo Society of Washington, a 501c3 organization and sister agency to Decriminalize Nature Seattle. 
 

Mar 16, 2021
PTSF50 - Microdosing and the Placebo Effect, with Balázs Szigeti and David Erritzoe
01:07:50
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle, Joe, and Michelle are joined by Balázs Szigeti and David Erritzoe, who both worked on last week’s much-discussed trial on microdosing that validated the power of the placebo effect. 
 

Mar 12, 2021
PT234 - Christopher Solomon - Salvia as a Therapist
01:24:38
In this episode, Kyle interviews somatic salvia guide and creator of the salvia pipe, Christopher Solomon. They talk about the many unique things salvia can bring to experiencers if it's approached with mindfulness and respect. 
 

Mar 09, 2021
PTSF49 - MDMA For Alcoholism, The Placebo Effect, and Ceremonial Magicians
01:27:41
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle, Joe, and Michelle discuss using MDMA for alcoholism, a microdosing study proving the placebo effect, ways to make therapy cheaper, and if a Shaman is really necessary for ceremonies. 
 

Mar 05, 2021
PT233 - JR Rahn - LSD, ADHD, and Decriminalization
01:14:10
In this episode, Joe interviews founder and CEO of MindMed, JR Rahn. They discuss decriminalization, the DEA, ADHD, Xanax, and MindMed’s goals: developing a trip-neutralizing drug and studying microdosing LSD for adult ADHD. 
 

Mar 02, 2021
PTSF48 - Decriminalization, Embracing the Mystical, and a Plea for More Ethical Exploration
01:10:06
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle, Joe, and Michelle discuss Norway's plan to decriminalize personal drug use, lucid dreaming, therapists embracing the mystical, and Tim Ferriss’ plea for more ethical drug exploration. 
 

Feb 26, 2021
PT232 - Dr. Ryan Westrum - Who We Are Without Medicine
01:06:21
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle interviews clinical psychologist and author of The Psychedelics Integration Handbook, Dr. Ryan Westrum, about intuition, trust, and self-work in today's Covid climate of solitude. 
 

Feb 23, 2021
PTSF47 - Covid, Ketamine, and Human Rights
01:12:45
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe are joined by author, Michelle Janikian. They discuss covid, ketamine, DMT for stroke patients, a psilocybin lab in Jamaica, and question if drug laws violate human rights.  
 

Feb 19, 2021
PT231 - Dr. Hassan Tetteh - Human Care Over Health Care
01:09:34
In this episode, Kyle interviews Thoracic surgeon and author of The Art of Human Care, Dr. Hassan Tetteh, about his near-death experience, transcendental meditation, Death Over Dinner, finding purpose, and the power of listening. 
 

Feb 16, 2021
PTSF 46 - Patents, Prohibition, Health, and Happiness
01:02:12
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe discuss the drug war, psychedelic exceptionalism, and patent law in relation to Compass Pathways trying to patent commonalities in psilocybin-assisted therapy like holding hands.
 

Feb 12, 2021
PT230 - Penny White of NeonMind Biosciences
01:10:02
In this episode, Joe interviews Vancouver-based serial entrepreneur and founder and CEO of NeonMind Biosciences, Penny White. She talks about taking NeonMind public and their current project: using psilocybin to combat obesity.  
 

Feb 09, 2021
PTSF 45
01:06:01
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe cover recent news, talk about several upcoming PT classes and events, and discuss the ethics of ayahuasca centers continuing to hold large group sessions during the pandemic.
 

Feb 05, 2021
PT229 - Dr. Matthew Johnson - What is Consciousness?
01:12:11
In this episode, Kyle and Joe interview researcher and professor at Johns Hopkins, Dr. Matthew Johnson. They talk about the definition of consciousness and the use of religious/spiritual frameworks in psychedelic sessions.   
 

Feb 02, 2021
PTSF 44 (with Colin Thompson, director of "Light Years")
01:13:34
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe interviews Vermont-based filmmaker Colin Thompson about his newest "'Superbad' on mushrooms" movie, “Light Years:” a tribute to a fallen friend in which he played nearly every part.  
 
Jan 29, 2021
PT228 - Deborah Snyder from Synergetic Press
01:17:12
In this episode, Joe interviews Director of ecological think tank The Institute of Ecotechnics, and publisher and CEO of Synergetic Press, Deborah Snyder. They discuss agriculture, Richard Evans Schultes, and Ralph Metzner.  
 

Jan 26, 2021
PTSF 43
33:40
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe discuss Eternal September, what happens when cannabis gets legalized, the term “plant medicine,” and what could happen to you if you inject psilocybin tea into your blood. 
 

Jan 22, 2021
PT227- Dr. Anne Wagner - Couples Therapy, MDMA, and MAPS
01:07:41
In this episode, Joe interviews Dr. Anne Wagner: Toronto-based clinical psychologist, founder of Remedy, and lead investigator on MAPS' trial of cognitive processing therapy + MDMA for PTSD. 
 

Jan 19, 2021
PTSF 42
01:03:43
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe discuss the protest at The US Capitol, how psychedelics can lead to an openness to conspiracy theories, and where we’re headed in the realms of technology, knowledge, and truth. 
 

Jan 15, 2021
PT226 - Veronika Gold & Harvey Schwartz from Polaris Insight Center
01:24:59
In this episode, Kyle interviews Veronika Gold and Harvey Schwartz, co-therapists, trainers, and founders of Polaris Insight Center. They also work as investigators in MAPS’ Phase 3 MDMA-assisted psychotherapy clinical trials.  
 

Jan 12, 2021
PTSF 41 (with Mendel Kaelen of Wavepaths)
01:09:57
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe interviews founder and CEO of Wavepaths, Mendel Kaelen, about the psychedelic power of musical experiences, and what Wavepaths is creating with sensory-immersive psychedelic environments.
 

Jan 08, 2021
PT225 - Gary Michael Smith, Esq. - Psychedelic Law
01:20:05
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe interviews founder and CEO of Wavepaths, Mendel Kaelen, about the psychedelic power of musical experiences, and what Wavepaths is creating with sensory-immersive psychedelic environments.
 

Jan 05, 2021
PTSF 40
01:03:09
In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe talk about spirituality and spiritual development, intention-setting, religion, hypnosis and false memories, therapists imposing their own frameworks on clients, and shamanism. 
 

Jan 01, 2021
PT224 - Dr. Dan Engle - The Concussion Repair Manual
01:13:53

In this episode, Joe interviews Medical Director of the Kuya Institute for Transformational Medicine, consultant to Onnit Labs, consultant to several international treatment centers, and author of one of Joe's most referenced books, The Concussion Repair Manual, Dr. Dan Engle.

Engle is quite knowledgeable when it comes to concussions and traumatic brain injuries and the brain’s ability to heal. He specializes in psychiatry, neurology, peak performance methods, and healing through regenerative and plant medicines. He talks about the sadly very different stories of his siblings, the factors that affect neurological resiliency, the need for establishing neurological performance baselines for athletes, the science behind CBD being a neuro-protectant, the safety and efficacy of psilocybin, how scaling research can dilute data, the importance of dipping one’s toes into non-ordinary states of consciousness before trying psychedelics, how we seem to have hit a new phase of learning more about preparation, and how not trying to achieve transcendence is suppressing a biological need.

Engle will be opening a new center in the new year, and for now, is offering a free "Integration call" over Zoom every week at 4:30pm MST. You can learn more at fullspectrummedicine.com.

Notable Quotes

“It’s fascinating that, in the midst of this medical movement, we’re seeing both of these fields of medicine, in parallel, gain more and more traction- this being the psychedelic medical arena, which is more psychological-based in nature, and then you have the neurologic concussion repair arena [that's] more hardware, brain-tissue based. So you’ve got, now, software and hardware technologies in two parallel medical paths, both accelerating at the same time, with this intermediary bridge between those two fields, which is the psychedelics.”

“There’s a lot of interest, there’s a huge demand, the data’s very good, and when done well, there can be a pretty significant profit margin. And so, it still comes down to: the primary focus has to be client care and client outcome, not a profit-driven model.”

“When you prepare people well, for sure, you see this magnificent improvement in rates of response, recovery, whether you’re going for healing something like one of those epidemics I mentioned, or just optimization and fulfillment and the radical remembering of our awesomeness and what we’ve come to be a part of. At that point, the whole game has changed. The whole game of life just has changed from scarcity to abundance, from ‘what I have to’ to ‘what I get to,’ from the ‘me, mine and I,’ to the ‘us, the we, and the all.’ This is a shift in consciousness. It’s a shift at the level of the psyche, and psyche means soul, so this is a process where we reconnect with the deeper aspect of our inherent humanity, and no agent on the planet is as consistently predictive to support that process than psychedelics. Near-death experience can do that, but it’s not as easy to control that process.”

“We’re always evolving, individually and collectively, and these psychedelic medicines, when done well- these are sparks. They’re ignitors. They’re catalysts of consciousness.”

Links

Drdanengle.com

Fullspectrummedicine.com

Concussionrepairmanual.com

Revivecenters.com

Spravato info

Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, by Robert Whitaker

The Biology of Transcendence: A Blueprint of the Human Spirit, by Joseph Chilton Pearce


About Dr. Dan Engle

 

 

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Dec 29, 2020
PTSF 39 (with Jonas and Kristina of the Psychedelic Literacy Fund)
01:17:10

In today’s Christmas episode of Solidarity Friday, Kyle and Joe take a break from the news and instead sit down with Jonas Di Gregorio and Kristina Soriano of the Psychedelic Literacy Fund, a donor-advised fund working to raise money and co-finance the translation and publication of the most important books on psychedelic therapy into a variety of different languages. 

Their first project is both volumes of Stan Grof's The Way of the Psychonaut, which they hope to have translated into German, French, and Italian by July (for Grof's 90th birthday), and they have started a list of future projects, with Christopher Bache's LSD and the Mind of The Universe likely next. They talk about early interactions with Rick Doblin, why they went with a donor-advised fund rather than a crowdfunding model, the synchronicities they saw at early steps in their path, what Grof's work has meant to them, and a possible future goal of setting up a Grof museum in Prague. Kyle and Joe also share stories of their interactions with Grof and how his work (and how little he was being discussed) led to the beginnings of Psychedelics Today 4 years ago. 

If you're feeling some holiday generosity and want to help more people gain the knowledge Grof has brought to so many, please visit Psychedelicliteracy.org and make a donation (or volunteer translation services or suggest future projects).

Lastly, if you celebrate Christmas, Merry Christmas from Psychedelics Today!

Notable Quotes

“We have an inherently global mission. We’re an Italian and a Philippino living in America, trying to translate the work of a Czech psychiatrist.” -Kristina

“For me, it’s his capacity to really connect different fields, from quantum physics to psychiatry, [to the] history of religion- it’s really remarkable. The depth of his knowledge is so wide, and I think it can speak to so many people coming from different fields. I remember as a teenager, sharing the content of the books by Grof with friends that were studying physics and friends who were studying philosophy and friends who were studying psychology, and all of them could find something they could really appreciate.” -Jonas

“A book can be a harm reduction tool. ...Just having a book at the right time can really help you integrate a difficult experience and change the course of your life. Definitely, this has been the case for me. I didn’t know anyone in my community at the time that could really guide me, and these books played that role.” -Jonas

“Especially now, there’s a lot of conversation about diversity- how to increase diversity in the psychedelic community. Maybe the way to do that is literally to speak their language.” -Jonas

“I think the mental health crisis isn’t language-specific. I think it happens everywhere.” -Kristina

Links

Psychedelicliteracy.org

Rsfsocialfinance.org

The Secret Chief Revealed Paperback, by Myron J. Stolaroff

LSD: Doorway to the Numinous: The Groundbreaking Psychedelic Research into Realms of the Human Unconscious, by Stanislav Grof

A Course in Miracles: Foundation for Inner Peace

The Six Pathways of Destiny, by Ralph Metzner

Psychedelics Today: Susan Hess Logeais

Thewayofthepsychonaut.com

Oregonlive.com: One of the architects of Oregon’s bid to legalize psychedelic mushrooms, Sheri Eckert, has died


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Dec 25, 2020
PT223 - Daniel Carcillo - Life After Sports
01:09:32

In this episode, Joe interviews "Car Bomb"- the 9-year NHL veteran, 2-time Stanley Cup winner (as a member of the Chicago Blackhawks), founder of The Chapter Five Foundation (an organization helping athletes transition into post-sports life), and advocate for the healing power of psilocybin, Daniel Carcillo.

Carcillo tells the story of his struggles and depression brought on from post-hockey life transition, 7 diagnosed concussions, and the death of his good friend and fellow player, Steve Montador, who struggled with similar issues before his sudden death in 2015. He talks about the stress of pro sports and the cult-like, team-first attitude in hockey, the hazing athletes experience coming up, the causes and effects of yelling coaches and a "be better" attitude, and how his post-hockey work and speaking out has ostracized him from the community while many people are reaching out to him for help behind the scenes. 

His first hero dose of psilocybin forever changed his life, but it wasn't just psilocybin- he's done a lot in the 5 years since that first ceremony, from neurofeedback, acupuncture, deprivation tanks, and using a gyrostim, to regularly microdosing, taking medicinal mushrooms like lion's mane and reishi, meditating, starting a CBD and supplements company, and growing huge crops of cannabis. He talks about how this has all helped improve his life and his relationships with his family, and what he hopes to do with his Chapter Five Foundation and beyond- researching more into what worked for him and developing a protocol/regiment to help people affected by concussions, post-concussive syndrome, TBIs, CTE, or just those struggling with what to do after sports.

Notable Quotes

“I’m an advocate for everything, for all tiers. I’m an advocate for the Decrim Nature [model] because it’s a lower-tier model to get people this medicine, and then I’m an advocate for the clinical model that people are pushing forward in Oregon, and I’m an advocate for these big pharma/biotech companies coming out and researching. ...You really have to make sure that we’re doing it the right way, and I think a lot of the companies out there are, so I think there’s such an opportunity at the ground floor right now to really get in, and if you have something that’s proven, that’s worked (like we do), then I really, really just feel so passionately about furthering that type of research, to again, get millions of people this type of treatment and this type of option.”

“It’s still kind of unbelievable when I begin to talk about it, kind of what I’ve set in motion, but I believe in it so much and I’m still really in awe of what this medicine has done for me. We have one life to live. How do I help the most people that I can?”

“I just had to adjust my whole perspective and thinking and how I spoke to myself, changing the negative motivation to positive. But it’s constant work, because I’m just so used to being yelled at and then [being negative towards myself]. It’s definitely one of the biggest shifts that I’ve had, and I had that shift- that was at 2 and a half months after that big ceremony. That’s where I knew- that’s what really convinced me, and I’ll never forget this: I was driving out to my plants and they were about, I don’t know, 3 feet tall, and we were about 2 and a half months in, and I was like, ‘Wow Dan, really good job.’ I had this voice say that and I was like, ‘What the hell was that? Where did that come from?’ I’ve never done that, ever, and I was like ‘Ohhh man, something happened. Something shifted.’”

Links

Danielcarcillo.com

Chapter5foundation.com

Madeplanthealth.com (his CBD and supplement company)

Twitter

Instagram

Psymposia.com: Chicago could become largest city to Decriminalize Entheogenic Plants

Yahoo Sports: NHL pins Steve Montador's fatal brain injuries on his ‘own lack of due care’

US Patent 6630507: The US Government's Cannabis Patent

Parkinsonsnewstoday.com: Silo Pharma Plans Phase 2B Trial Testing Low-dose Psychedelics in Parkinson’s

Gyrostim.com

Del Jolly’s Psychedelics Today episode (lots of concussion and TBI talk)


About Daniel Carcillo

Daniel Carcillo is a two time Stanley Cup Champion and played 9 seasons in the National Hockey League. Daniel experienced emotional, sexual and physical trauma within hockey's culture and battled mental health and addiction issues during and post career. When he retired in 2015, after sustaining 7 concussions and due to Post Concussion Syndrome, he founded Chapter 5 Foundation, a charitable organization that helps athletes transition into life after the game. Daniel struggled with PCS symptoms like light sensitivity, slurred speech, insomnia, headaches and head pressure, impulse control issues, anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts and traditional treatments did not work. Daniel brought forth the Decriminalize Nature resolution to the city of Chicago, sits on the Decriminalize Nature National Advisory Board & the board of the Heroic Hearts Project, a registered 501(c)(3) non profit that connects military veterans struggling with mental trauma to ayahuasca therapy retreats. Daniel has recently founded Made Therapeutics, a life sciences company that is researching loading and maintenance doses of psilocybin to treat traumatic brain injury, Post Concussion Syndrome, migraines and TBI related anxiety, depression and PTSD. Daniel and Made Therapeutics will be working towards validating the first novel care option for TBI survivors through Health Canada (IMPD) and FDA (IND) clinical trials, with Pre-IMPD & Pre-IND meetings set to establish a pathway forward to fast track status for traumatic brain injury.

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Dec 22, 2020
PTSF 38
01:02:49

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe talk about what they've been up to in the last few weeks: doing drugs!

Kyle first tells us about his recent experiments with revisiting salvia (which is legal in his state) and how different the experiences were from his young-and-dumb experiments as a teenager- how smaller doses in more ceremonial settings with years of experience in breathwork-inspired non-ordinary states of consciousness helped him see salvia differently. He talks about feeling like he just met the spirit of salvia, and the first message was to "respect the plants." He may be seeing her again.

And Joe talks in-depth about his experience last Friday with his first intermuscular ketamine injection- the setting, the music (Sigur Rós- good call, Joe), the dose and timing, and what he heard and felt (and didn't) in his ultimately anxiety-relieving, body-dissolving time in an empty void. Like Kyle, he's now even more open to and supportive of ketamine after the experience.

And they also talk about a new ibogaine analog that was recently created called tabernanthalog (or TBG), of which a single injection helped against heroin use relapse in mice for 14 days and doesn't stimulate the brain's reward centers. And they talk about the good that could come from the drug-designing technique used to create it, called function-oriented synthesis. 

Notable Quotes

“Some people tell me they like 1.2 mg/kg. Some people even like to go as high as 2. I think 2 mg/kg is essentially like, they could harvest all your organs and you wouldn’t notice one bit. Based on how high and dissociated I was, they probably could have done it to me- if they made it quick, like 5 minutes. I probably would have been fine.” -Joe

“The way I always framed it before going in was: this is an experience of consciousness without identity, without ego, without anything, really. And I didn’t really feel like there was anything there that was me. The idea of 'Joe' felt like a weird thing, a weird silly thing. There was just, like, I and ego and one consciousness, so it wasn’t like a Hindu, bliss consciousness thing; it was like me, as an entity, experiencing… something. Like empty void.” -Joe

“This experience was really just fascinating, like how rapidly my consciousness changed. It wasn’t a hurried, frenetic thing like DMT. It was like, “Oh, nope. You’re just here. You’re chilling. You’re not going anywhere.” -Joe

“The MAPs protocol is going to be very expensive. Psychedelic Therapy is already very expensive. So, if we could have a drug that would be safe for somebody to take at home, alone, I think of course we should do that. Not everything is cured through the psychedelic experience. Though a lot of things can be, it’s not the case that everything needs to be.” -Joe

Links

Sagewisdom.org (Dan Siebert’s site)

Wikipedia: Legal status of Salvia divinorum in the United States

Youtube: Twig Harper: Has anyone enjoyed smoking Salvia?

Salviahealings.com (Christopher Solomon’s site)

Psychedelics Today: Dr. Peter Addy- Salvia: Research and Therapeutic Use

Naloxone info

Ketamine Bladder Syndrome info

Sigur Rós on Spotify (this guy thinks this is their best album)

Sciencemag.org: Chemists re-engineer a psychedelic to treat depression and addiction in rodents

Nature.com: A non-hallucinogenic psychedelic analogue with therapeutic potential


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Dec 18, 2020
PT222 - Dr. Thomas of Clarity Psychiatry
01:13:38

In this episode, Joe interviews Dr. Thomas of Clarity Psychiatry in Boulder, Colorado.

Thomas first discusses what he initially looks for in patients (low-lying fruit like a vitamin D deficiency or poor diet) and what he recommends for boosting immunity and improving overall health, then this becomes a bit of an "everything you ever wanted to know about ketamine and ketamine-assisted therapy" podcast.

He talks about the range in treatment methods across conventional models and what you could expect to experience in relation to dose, experience, and price, and how he likes to use ketamine in his practice. And he talks about the dependence that can come from more conventional "get dripped" methods, the variation of doses and subsequent effects on most people vs. more sensitive people, ways to calibrate a patient to give them the best (and safest) possible experience, the missed opportunities of models that don't spend as much time on the experience and integration, why he believes so strongly in the efficacy and safety of ketamine (especially when compared to other psychedelics), and why how he'd like to see breathwork be used more in conjunction with both psychedelic and traditional therapies.

Notable Quotes

“In the worldview of the way I was trained, the whole point of ketamine therapy is not to get somebody hooked on ketamine for the rest of their life. It’s to give them enough corrective expanded experiences of healing and of their own inherent wholeness that they don’t need the ketamine- that whatever was off-balance is coming right.”

“I’d like to maybe reframe the word ‘dissociative.’ With ketamine, chemically, in the ketamine state, we are becoming less and less in tune with outside sensory input. We are dissociating with ourselves as a body, temporarily, to some degree. And we are associating with ourselves as something other than body. And there’s some real- I’m just going to go ahead and use the word- there’s some real magic in that possibly. There’s some real healing potential.”

“One of the final common pathways, shall we say, of any medicine or technique that can induce a non-ordinary state is temporarily softening the ruminative negative self-narrative that’s so characteristic of human suffering and mental illness. And how you achieve that state, in some ways, is potentially not even that important. ...Holotropic breathwork, or what I call journey breathwork, in any of its forms, absolutely can soften that egoic function and give people access to the parts of themselves that are bigger than that negative self-narrative, and just to bask in the juiciness of what’s possible when that happens. ...And I think from a pragmatic standpoint, if we were to use breathwork as [an] interim integration tool between sessions, could we get away with maybe slightly decreasing the frequency of the more expensive psychedelic sessions? Might there be societal value in that while still retaining the efficacy and the self-learning and the insights and all the good stuff that goes along with that?”

Links

Claritypsychiatry.com


About Dr. Thomas

Dr. Thomas graduated from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.  He completed his medical school training at Emory University School of Medicine. He then went on to complete his post graduate psychiatric residency training at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill.

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Dec 15, 2020
PTSF 37
45:44

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Kyle and Joe sit down and discuss several topics in the news. 

First, they congratulate co-founder of Psymposia, President of Adelia, and friend of Psychedelics Today (and first podcast guest) Brett Greene, on Adelia being acquired by CYBIN, for the equivalent of about $15.75 million USD (!!). And they talk about Silo Pharma announcing an upcoming Phase 2B trial testing low-dose psilocybin and LSD on the effects of neurogenesis on patients with Parkinson's disease and how we often forget that psychedelics can help with physical ailments (and not just depression and anxiety), 17 healthcare professionals at TheraPsil being allowed to take psilocybin as part of a training program and the need for therapists and sitters working with psychedelics to have psychedelic experiences themselves before working with others, and rock art evidence of datura being ingested at Pinwheel Cave in California.

And they also discuss a very important article about how to keep the psychedelic renaissance from going off the rails. With so much excitement surrounding psychedelics and so many underground groups and professional organizations doing so much without any centralized control, it's too easy for people to drain their bank accounts, jump ahead of science, and overcommit to an idea, forgetting the very real risks of these substances and everything surrounding them. And if we go too far, it just raises the risk of those in power shutting it all down.

Notable Quotes

“There’s a lot of nervousness around training, I think. Like, what constitutes good training? Not only is a ton of education, but it’s kind of a ton of time. The same way psychoanalysts have to go through psychoanalysis themselves, and therapists have to do therapy themselves, why is it not the case that psychedelic people need to do the same?” -Joe

“I think we need to be having some of these honest conversations even if it goes against our mission here at times of wanting to help get these substances legalized, decriminalized, whatever that track is. And [talking about] the promise of it, sometimes maybe we do get idealistic and say ‘This is going to revolutionize and change the world!’ but I also have to think back to some of my past experiences and be like, ‘Do I want to go through that again? I don’t think so.’ I mean, it pushed me out on the other side and I think made me a stronger person to some degree, but going through what I went through in those early years, it was pretty terrifying.” -Kyle

“Education and caution, I think is the point here, moving forward, and to be really honest with yourself too, especially if you’re in a place [where you’re] educating folks about psychedelics. How can you listen to other people’s stories and hear that maybe they’re not always light and magic- that people do experience a lot of fallout from it at times and things can get worse?” -Kyle 

Links

Businesswire.com: CYBIN Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire Adelia Therapeutics as Part of its Commitment to Strategic Growth

Brett Greene on Psychedelics Today (our first podcast!)

Parkinsonsnewstoday.com: Silo Pharma Plans Phase 2B Trial Testing Low-dose Psychedelics in Parkinson’s

Therapsil.ca: 17 Canadian Healthcare Professionals Approved to Use Psilocybin for Professional Training

Researchgate.net: Psychedelics in Psychiatry– Keeping the Renaissance From Going Off the Rails

Snopes.com: Death of Diane Linkletter

Drugged: The Science and Culture Behind Psychotropic Drugs, by Richard J. Miller

Pnas.org: Datura quids at Pinwheel Cave, California, provide unambiguous confirmation of the ingestion of hallucinogens at a rock art site

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Dec 11, 2020
PT221 - Bennet Zelner - The Pollination Approach
01:17:18

In this episode, Joe interviews Ph.D., Professor at the University of Maryland focusing on economics and global business studies, Advisory Board Member of the Usona Institute and Synthesis Institute, and co-founder of the Transformative Capital Institute, Bennet Zelner.

Zelner discusses the problems with our current economic, healthcare, therapeutic, and community paradigms- that our prevailing model is one of hyper-individualistic, drug-first action, compounded by a crisis of connection (the epidemic of loneliness we're experiencing), a crisis of extraction (giant corporations replacing local businesses with the bulk of profit being sent outside the community), and a crisis of depletion (decisions about community resources being made by those outside the community). And he talks about how his Transformative Capital Institute aims to facilitate many small changes to lead to large paradigm shifts, centered on his pollination approach- recognizing and encouraging the intrinsic interdependence between individual and community well-being.

He talks about the various projects the Transformative Capital Institute is working on, the way change happens and the complications of creating new paradigms from flawed ones, and how the pollination approach relates to psychedelics: using the newfound window of openness people experience after an experience to connect them with their community systems and surrounding environment- to help heal a person while revitalizing currently-broken systems at the same time.

Notable Quotes

“The pollination approach is rooted in a core, ecological principle, which is that the health of a system and of the elements in a system depends on the continual renewal and recirculation of resources within that system, and that’s the complete opposite of what we have right now.”

“What you’re not seeing is the reduction in subsequent local economic activity that’s going to occur as a result of the few bucks you just saved at Walmart. One of the other projects that I’m working on with a few other folks attempts to quantify that so that people can see what the effects are of spending their money locally vs. spending it at outposts of giant corporations. And I think if we can make that information accessible and comprehensible to people, then we can change behavior without even having to build in some kind of strong form incentive.”

“We’ve been taught by every institution in our society from the time that we are born that we’re not enough, that there’s not enough to go around, and in order to get ahead, we basically need to win at the expense of someone else, who loses. Even once we recognize how fallacious that is intellectually, there’s still a lot of work to be done to eliminate the deep, cognitive imprints in which that type of thinking is enshrined. ...I think that psychedelics-- as I said, they’re tools of personal transformation, so they can help people heal from trauma, etc. But I think they can also help people move into new paradigm ways of thinking and behaving.”

“In terms of shifting to a new paradigm in the healthcare system, I think the key shift needs to be one from a system that is focused on managing disease or managing disease symptoms (which is what we currently have) ...toward a system that’s focused on producing well-being. And I think psychedelics have a big role to play in that type of system.”

Links

MAPS.org: “The Pollination Approach to Delivering Psychedelic-Assisted Mental Healthcare,” by Bennet A. Zelner


About Bennet Zelner

 

 

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Dec 08, 2020
PTSF 36
54:17

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, after a short and much-needed break, Kyle and Joe return, but don't really touch on any news. This time, they have a very open conversation largely focused on philosophy and capitalism.

They dive into a lot of philosophical questions: are we reducing the mystical to the medical? Do we understand enough about spirit and somatic energies to measure them? How much are therapists and sitters interpreting mystical experience and assigning meaning to it for others vs. teaching people how to interpret it themselves? What makes a God? Is commodifying the sacred bad? And what makes something sacred other than it being significant? And the classic: What is good? 

They also touch on Harvard School of World Religions' year-long series on psychedelics and the future of religion, the Divine Command Theory, James Kent's DoseNation podcast series, Charles Eisenstein and the concept of deflationary money, the billionaire pledge, triple bottom line thinking and other ways to incentivize employees to make businesses closer to co-ops, and why not all capitalism is bad. Lastly, Joe highly recommends Tom O'Neill and Dan Piepenbring's book, CHAOS: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties, which touches on MKUltra, the Phoenix Program, how the government used Charles Manson, and how the drug war was a logical consequence of the paranoia of the U.S.S.R. and communism toppling the USA and capitalism.

Notable Quotes

“Coming from the somatic world, our bodies- I think, sometimes we dismiss that and maybe might call that a little ‘woo woo,’ but how is your body an actual instrument that can help you understand maybe what’s going on? It’s firing a bunch of signals all the time, right? Information is just coming in and we have to try to make sense of it. Is it an appropriate instrument to try to learn how to discern the information that’s coming in? Could we finely tune that?” -Kyle

“It’s helpful to have diagnostic categories, but I think we’re taking the diagnostic categories a little too seriously and making them a little too real. A diagnostic category is not as real as a glass of water in your hand. One’s real concrete, one’s real abstract. Both are helpful at times. Both could be harmful, depending on what you do with the glass.” -Joe

“A lot of folks want to just use psychedelics and escape the world, like the ‘drop out’ thing. Like, ‘I’m just going to be with the spirit world.’ But it’s like, what good is you being with the spirit world if you’re not having any impact on the world world?” -Joe

“Being hubristic enough to say that ‘I have an answer’- that’s where I see the problem. Being willing to engage in conversation with people with a lot more experience with this kind of thing is probably where it’s at. Like, ok, let’s talk to 4-5 economists and see what their opinion is. Maybe talk to some professional ethicists to see what their opinion is. I don’t think anybody is going to have the answer, but by hearing all of those perspectives, we can learn more.” -Joe

Links

Center for the Study of World Religions: Medicalizing Mysticism: Religion in Contemporary Psychedelic Trials (youtube)

Divine Command Theory

Psymposia.com: “Lucy In The Sky With Nazis: Psychedelics and the Right Wing” by Brian Pace, PhD

Sage Journals: Increased nature relatedness and decreased authoritarian political views after psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression

James Kent’s DoseNation podcast

The Myth of Mental Illness: Foundations of a Theory of Personal Conduct, by Thomas S. Szasz

The Giving Pledge turns 10: These billionaires pledged to give away half their wealth, but they soon ran into a problem

CHAOS: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties, by Tom O'Neill with Dan Piepenbring

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Dec 04, 2020
PT220 - Susan Hess Logeais - The Way of the Psychonaut
01:11:00

In this episode, Joe interviews writer, director, and producer of the recent documentary, "The Way of the Psychonaut: Stanislav Grof's Journey of Consciousness," Susan Hess Logeais. 

The film, which we streamed and presented a panel for back in October, was co-produced by Stan Grof himself, and tells of his journey from his youth in Nazi-occupied Prague to Esalen to today, with much of Logeais and her theory-affirming life story mixed in. It features interviews with many big names, including Fritjof Capra and Rupert Sheldrake, and full-length interviews can now be found on the film's website; 2 of which are conversations between Grof and legends we've lost recently: Ralph Metzner and Michael Harner. It is Joe's favorite film on Grof and his work.

Logeais talks about making the movie and meeting such big names in the field, wonders how differently children might grow up if quantum physics and a respectful agreement with nature were taught in school, discusses cesarian births and the differences they could create in fear or stress response in comparison to kids born traditionally, and talks about the power of breathwork and its enormous influence on psychedelic-assisted therapy.

Notable Quotes

“When I met Stan and heard him speak and heard what he spoke about- tantric science, mythology, Eastern spiritual traditions, even quantum physics, Shamanic journeywork- there were so many things that he spoke about that I had explored on my own before I met him. And then in the course of making the movie, I realized that he had introduced many of those concepts during his 14 years at Esalen. And so I was resonating with him on a level-- it’s like he was impacting my life before I met him.”

On using MDMA with psychedelics: “Perhaps as an introduction to a psychedelic experience, especially for people who are older, it might not be a bad idea. I know the anxiety that I had occasionally when something was going really fast and very deep. But I agree with you in that the depth and that anxiety passes, and it’s in the learning to get past that anxiety that we develop capacity for reflection and to move away from reactivity. So I think maybe for the first trip, just to say, ‘Ok, this is what you’re in for, and next time we’re not going to do this.’”

“I just want to say how valuable I think Stan’s contribution is, and how proud I am, or how, I guess, grateful I am to have worked with him in the creation of this film. And I’m so glad that you enjoyed it because I wanted to take his theories, his discoveries, his contributions, and make them accessible and interesting so that people could watch it and come away with an understanding that would hopefully inspire them to then go and do the deep work. And I hope people come to the website and visit the live stream archive page so that they can gain a deeper understanding of all these amazing concepts that Stan participated in sharing during his time at Esalen and his ITA conferences.” 

Links

Susanhesslogeais.com

Thewayofthepsychonaut.com

The Way of the Psychonaut facebook

Blackfoot Physics: A Journey Into the Native American Worldview, by F. David Peat

Stangrof.com

Grof-legacy-training.com

Holotropic.com: Grof Transpersonal Training


About Susan Hess Logeais

Susan holds a demonstrated history of working in the entertainment industry. She is skilled in Music Videos, Film, Documentaries, Commercials, and Theatre. She demonstrates strong entrepreneurship professional with a Interdisciplinary Degree focused in Transformational Entertainment and Human Consciousness from Marylhurst University. She is an actress and producer, known for Gone (2012), Not Dead Yet (2009) and The Way of the Psychonaut: Stanislav Grof's Journey of Consciousness (2020).

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Dec 01, 2020
PTSF 35 (with Brian Muraresku)
01:32:13

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, the typical Solidarity Fridays format is switched up yet again, this time with Joe interviewing author of best-selling book, The Immortality Key: The Secret History of the Religion with No Name, and recent Joe Rogan Experience guest, Brian Muraresku. Because where do you go after Joe Rogan? Psychedelics Today, of course. 

Muraresku discusses how his fascination with Latin and Greek and the 1978 book, The Road to Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries (by R. Gordon Wasson, Albert Hofmann, and Carl A. P. Ruck) and its proposal of a psychedelic sacrament of sorts being imbibed at the Rites of Eleusis led him to spend about 12 years searching for evidence to prove it. From the idea of "graveyard beer," to Alcibiades and the profanation of mysteries, to wine parties to interact with the dead called refrigeriums, Muraresku dives deep into his findings: that the wine they drank was, at the least, spiked with herbs and spices to create something very different and likely hallucinogenic, that participants were seeking immortality, a euphoric ecstasy, and communion with both God and the dead, that both the Dionysian Gospel and Christianity are heavily related to the Rites of Eleusis, and that these ceremonies don't appear to have been isolated to Eleusis- that people took what they learned and practiced elsewhere, in what Denise Demetriou refers to as "open-access sanctuaries."

Notable Quotes

“Some of the legacies of this civilization, from democracy and the arts and sciences to literature and philosophy and the very concept of a university- all these inheritances are the things that we associate with the very literate Greeks. And there stands Euelisis at the center of it all. ...And they [the Rites] were seen as so important, so central, so integral to life at the time, that even Cicero, a Roman in the first century B.C.- he referred to Euelisis as ‘the most exceptional and divine thing that Athens ever produced.’ So it wasn’t democracy, the arts, sciences, etc. It was Eleusis.”

“They saw something. The thinking for a long time was that maybe it was a theatrical performance- maybe there was something happening in this temple that has been lost to time. And then that book I mentioned in 1978, The Road to Eleusis, was saying as long as we’re talking about a vision, why can’t it be something that was produced internally? Why couldn’t it be one of these great epiphanic psychedelic visions? And so, as a hypothesis, it makes sense just based on the way people talked about this experience. It was a once in a lifetime experience that essentially erased the fear of death and made these initiates immortals. And weirdly, which is why I picked this up in the first place, it’s very, very similar to the testimony that comes from the volunteers in the Johns Hopkins experiments with psilocybin. It’s again, a once in a lifetime single dose of psilocybin [that] seems to result in these profound, mystical transformations in people; including atheists, who will describe it as among the most meaningful experiences of their lives.”

“I think that there was a historical Jesus, and I think that we have these relatively conflicting accounts of what he was and what the message was in the canonical gospels that have come down to us. But we have these other gospels and this Gnostic literature that didn’t make it in The Bible, and the gospel of Mary Magdalene. And what comes across to me, time and again, are people trying to find ecstasy, people looking for communion with Jesus. And again, you don’t have to look off into all this esoteric stuff just to focus on the very simple proposition that the Eucharist is an immortality potion, plain and simple.”

Links

TheImmortalityKey.com

The Road to Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries, by R. Gordon Wasson, Albert Hofmann, and Carl A. P. Ruck

Wikipedia.org: Diagoras of Melos (additional Alcibiades/“profanation the mysteries” info

R. Gordon Wasson’s 1957 Life magazine article

The Dionysian Gospel: The Fourth Gospel and Euripides, by Dennis R. MacDonald

Youtube: Joe Rogan Experience #1543 - Brian Muraresku & Graham Hancock

Youtube: His recent appearance on CNN

The Immortality Key on Audible

About Brian Muraresku

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Nov 27, 2020
PT219 - Tania de Jong - Mind Medicine Australia
01:12:48

In this episode, Kyle and Joe interview singer, speaker, social entrepreneur, and founder of numerous charities and organizations, Tania de Jong. 

What brings de Jong to Psychedelics Today are her most recent and most psychedelically-inclined undertakings: co-finding Mind Medicine Australia and submitting an application to Australia's Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to reschedule psilocybin from Schedule 9 ("prohibited substances") to Schedule 8 ("controlled medicines"), the results of which should be decided in February.

She talks about her Tim Ferriss and Michael Pollan-inspired psychedelic journey, the healing power and science behind singing with other people, session playlist construction, and the numerous accomplishments of Mind Medicine Australia and their biggest goal: setting up a center of emerging mental health therapies to look at research and development, manufacturing, and economic modeling to ensure these medicines can be widely accepted and an industry can be correctly and efficiently built around them in Australia. And she talks a lot about the isolation and fear behind Covid-19 and the effects we're seeing now, the effects future generations will see, and why this could be the crisis we need to catalyze psychedelics more into the healing mainstream.

Notable Quotes

“It became really obvious that Australia didn’t really have an ecosystem to bring these medicines to the wider community. ...And so we thought, well, the best thing we could do to help the millions of people in Australia who were suffering (let alone the rest of the world) is to set up a charity that would make sure that these medicines became accessible, affordable, [and] available to people, no matter where they were, what their background was- if they were screened and screened to be appropriate, that they would have access to these medicines in medically-controlled environments. They wouldn’t get to take the medicines home, but they’d get to actually heal, and that would be the greatest gift we could possibly give.”

“The only indicator here has been about Covid deaths and Covid cases- that’s what gets reported on. But an actual fact- the cure is proving to be far worse than the illness itself, and what we’re seeing is that there will be far more deaths of despair and deaths from mental illnesses and domestic violence and the trauma that our younger generations are going to face potentially for their whole lives that will lead to addiction and other mental illnesses, and no one’s counting those costs yet. But when they do, those figures are going to blow any Covid deaths and lasting illness out of the water.”

“We had an epidemic of loneliness and social isolation well before this crisis, and what this has done is just made that far worse. ...People are experiencing [an] enormous sense of isolation and separateness and this is why these medicines are so important, because as we all know, they create this sense of connection and oneness, and a sense that we’re part of everything, [and] everything is part of us. That’s a wonderfully comforting understanding to have and it makes being alone easier to bear when you feel that sense of gratitude and unity and that sense of expanded consciousness.” 

Links

Taniadejong.com

Mindmedicineaustralia.org

Mind Medicine Australia: 2021 International Summit on Psychedelic Therapies for Mental Illness info

Her TEDx Talk: “How singing together changes the brain”

“The Trip Treatment,” by Michael Pollan

Mindmedicineaustralia.org: Certificate in Psychedelic-Assisted Therapies

Their press release about submitting application for rescheduling of psilocybin and MDMA

Mind Medicine Australia: Youtube

Their animated video: “Everyone should have access to psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy"


About Tania de Jong

 

 

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Nov 24, 2020
PTSF 34 (with Craig Heacock)
01:10:32

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, the typical Solidarity Fridays format is switched up again, this time with Joe interviewing podcast host and psychiatrist specializing in ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, Craig Heacock. 

Will Hall's 2 recent SF episodes spurred a lot of conversation, and led to Heacock reaching out to Psychedelics Today to counter some of Hall's points, and stand up a bit on behalf of psychiatry. He feels that while psychiatry isn't perfect, saying to replace it isn't helpful, and doesn't feel that anyone in psychiatry is saying a pill will fix anything, but rather, that if psychedelics can help people get in touch with buried trauma (something that typically takes a lot of time and relationship/trust-building and often still doesn't work), then shouldn't we not only be treating them like medicine, but also learning as much as we possibly can about them? 

He points out some of the most obvious flaws with our model of psychiatry (and how we deal with mental health in general), discusses the barriers stopping physicians from learning more about ketamine, looks at the "spiritual emergency vs. psychotic break" argument from a different perspective, talks about what he sees in his practice and how much ketamine has helped his clients, and really brings home one of Will Hall's main points from a different perspective- while Hall talked about how science isn't always the answer because of how much nuance there is from person to person, he points out the amount of nuance in how mental health physicians treat clients, how clients arrived at their mental state in the first place, and how differently they respond, both with or without psychedelics.  

Whether you felt Will Hall brought a lot of interesting ideas to the table or hated those episodes, this is the yin to those episodes' yang.

Notable Quotes

“I think a lot of psychiatrists are just trying to keep their head above water, which, I think, they would much more enjoyably keep their head above water if they would use ketamine in their practices.”

“We may never understand the mind-brain connection fully, but don’t we want to try?”

“We’re finding with ayahuasca work (a lot of psychedelic work) that some people are going to these sessions and their conscious brain is saying ‘oh yea, there’s no trauma,’ and we’re finding out that there’s some serious trauma that’s just underneath the surface. And again, if we don’t know that, how can we get to the roots of anything? ...Almost like we use a CT scan to see what’s happening in your innermost self, it’d be interesting to think of using psychedelics as sort of a psychological diagnostic tool to say: 'Is there trauma in there?'”

“When Will is saying, ‘Why are we trying to address trauma with a pill?’ I don’t think any of us are. I don’t think anybody on the MAPS study or I don’t know, people in the psilocybin studies- I really don’t think anybody is thinking, 'Ooo we’re going to fix PTSD with psilocybin!' or 'We’re going to fix trauma with this 150 mg MDMA capsule!’ Nobody’s thinking that. What we’re thinking is: this is a catalyst, [and] resources are limited. ...We need to get in there quickly and get working on this, and that’s what’s so exciting to me about psychedelics coming online with mental health, is that we can get down to business quickly and not have to spend so much time trying to get past these defenses.”

“Capitalism is messy and psychiatry is messy and psychedelics are messy and people are messy, and isn’t that ok? Can’t we just accept that and not default to this sort of pan-negativism and finger-pointing and blaming? Because, again, we’re all on the same team. We want the same thing. We want people to thrive and we want to dial down psychological despair as much as we can.”

Links

Craigheacockmd.com

Back From the Abyss podcast

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Nov 20, 2020
PT218 - Dena Justice - How to Beat Anxiety
01:04:58

In this episode, Joe interviews Psychedelics Today's first 3-time guest, Dena Justice of the Ecstatic Collective. 

They discuss the ins and outs of something we're all too familiar with: anxiety. They talk about how Western society's lack of community and focus on doing things yourself (and not asking for help) mixed with a weird pride in being overworked and stressed has created a world where we all deal with daily anxiety, and deal with it differently. She first became addicted to exercise, but realized that learning to slow down, ignoring FOMO and embracing JOMO (the joy of missing out), having fewer goals in favor of more accomplishment, embracing play as a way of finding flow state, celebrating accomplishments instead of failures, and tuning her frequency towards happiness has helped her change her life drastically for the better.

She talks about more ways to combat anxiety, and her new program where you can sign up for these kinds of tips and tricks to be emailed to you on a regular basis (sign up here). She is also offering a valuable discounted bundle of courses in partnership with Psychedelics Today, which includes 2 Ecstatic Collective courses and 2 Psychedelics Today courses.

Notable Quotes

“The best thing you can do is learn to be uncomfortable.”

“Talking about playful things is just tapping into the inner child inside of us, giving ourselves permission to play. Go to the playground. Ignore the sign that says ‘this playspace is designated for 12-year-olds and under.’ F that! Your tax dollars paid for that playground. Go play on that playground!”

“Look at all these non-ordinary states of consciousness and how they tie in here- meditation, breathwork, exercise, early childhood (because that’s pure receptivity), psychedelics, every single orgasm. ...Every single one of these things is putting us in flow state. It’s bringing us to the present moment, where anxiety cannot exist because we’re in the present. Anxiety is fear of the future, depression is being caught up on the past. ...but when we’re in the present, all of that goes away.” 

“Email is a tool for efficiency, not necessarily effectiveness. What’s effective? Real communication. I think a lot of anxiety comes from the lack of true communication these days. ...7% of what our communication is is the actual words we say to each other. 55% is our physiology and 38% is our tonality. That means we’re losing 93% of our communication when we put it in an email or a text message or on social media.”

Links

Ecstaticcollective.com

Sign up for anxiety-reduction emails

Her last appearance on Psychedelics Today

Her appearance before that

Kompan playground equipment

Marco Polo app


About Dena Justice

As a master manifester, Dena has created a beautiful life for herself. She been financially responsible since age 15 including putting herself through college, two masters degrees and purchasing her own home in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has made over $1M in her life through a fulfilling career as a facilitator, educator, trainer, mentor and coach working with thousands of people across the country. She loved her career, yet hit a point where she felt empty. Near the top of her career ladder, she was a classic case of a high performer and leader hitting burnout. She chose a powerful pivot out of her J-O-B and into her own business. Now, she helps other high performers who have hit burnout and are scared to admit they’ve hit a plateau or a wall. She helps them get the eff out of their own way and move to the next level to increase their impact so they feel fulfilled and inspired again, as well as helping them create more wealth and the relationships they want in their lives. She helps people experience new levels of success, increase/improve focus and performance, abolish FOMO, evolve communication skills, develop transformational leadership skills, create amazing relationships, increase financial abundance and live life on their own terms.

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Nov 17, 2020
PTSF 33
01:07:16

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle review all of the big wins from the U.S. election, from Oregon decriminalizing drug possession and legalizing psilocybin therapy, to 4 states legalizing cannabis use for adults, to the most surprising (in terms of how far this movement has come), Washington D.C. decriminalizing plant medicines with an overwhelming 76% of voters in favor.

And they talk about the other side of this good- how Oregon memes show just how little the majority of people understand, how there are still huge issues with stigma, drug exceptionalism, and labeling, how liability and the rules of healthcare get in the way of compassion and humane treatment, and how those same issues will unfortunately extend into psychedelics.

They also do a brief deep dive into breathwork- its history, its various versions, its building blocks (accelerated breathing, evocative music, focused bodywork, group process, and safety), and the risks and likely loss in benefit in attempting to do this kind of work online.

And, lastly, exciting news: the next round of the live, 8-week (CE-approved) version of  Navigating Psychedelics for Clinicians and Therapists will be starting up on January 7th, so sign up now!

Notable Quotes

“I remember just watching all of this stuff come in on election night and just thinking, ‘Wow, it feels like plants have really won the election here.’ ...All of the initiatives that were up there passed during this election cycle, which is pretty phenomenal and a huge kind of shift.” -Kyle

“These different institutions have different rules, different liabilities. Like, a VA doc is probably going to be a lot more protected than a private practice doc, but the VA doc is going to be on a lot tighter regulations on what they can do, just based on the healthcare system they’re in. It’s a complicated deal. I don’t envy doctors for having to be in that situation. It’s really not an easy job. And I know they’re doing the best they can; it’s just, you know, their rules get in the way of their compassion and interest in healing people sometimes.” -Joe

“I had and still have a ferocious case of ADD that’s never been diagnosed. I’ve been extraordinarily productive if I ever needed to use something like Adderall. It works great. But there’s so much stigma around saying something like that in the psychedelic world. We’re often a little too judgy, is kind of my position. ...There’s cases when it’s appropriate, there’s cases when it’s not appropriate, and as long as there’s informed consent and decent education, it should be up to the individuals, and we should stay the fuck out of people’s business.” -Joe

On breathwork: “It’s my favorite. It’s something I’ve been doing for so long that it’s my most comfortable, somehow least scary method of going inside and doing inner work, because I know I have this safe cultural container- a safe container with people I trust and love, and it’s always helpful and amazing. Even if I don’t get the experience I want, just being there in community is still medicine enough.” -Joe

Links

Psychedelics Today: Recapping the Biggest Wins in Drug Laws and Policies in the 2020 U.S. Elections

Psychedelics Today: Tom and Sheri Eckert - Oregon Psilocybin Therapy Initiative

Psychedelics Today: What is Transpersonal Breathwork?

Firesideproject.org: Psychedelic Peer Support Line

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Nov 13, 2020
PT217 - Erika Dyck - Canadian Psychedelic History
01:12:34

In this episode, Joe interviews Ph.D., Professor at the University of Saskatchewan, and author specializing in the history of psychedelics and their relation to the medical industry, Erika Dyck.

Dyck talks about her interest in Canadian history and specifically Saskatchewan, which was the first jurisdiction in North America to elect a socialist government. She talks about how it was clear in the early days of governmental support that they were reaching out to people with bold ideas, leading to Humphry Osmand coming there in 1951 to commence research that he felt was being stifled in London.

They talk extensively about the work of Osmand and Abram Hoffer, early experiments with giving staff in mental hospitals LSD to encourage empathy toward patients, a hospital architect taking LSD and learning that tiled, checkerboard-esque floors may be a challenge to patients with depth perception issues, a “Hollywood hospital” where wealthy film stars were flown to deal with addiction largely in secret, the concept of having patients write out an autobiography before a medicine session in order to reflect back on their life afterward, Osmond's participation in a peyote ceremony and his subsequent report, why the Timothy Leary model of dropping out of the scientific/academic world isn't helpful, why time passed and changed public opinion have led to old research coming to light, and why it's more important to talk to people who aren't sold on psychedelics yet instead of those who are already bought in and live in our psychedelic bubble.

Notable Quotes

“Even people like Humphry Osmond or Abram Hoffer who were on the frontlines of that psychedelic heyday in the 1950s- they were quite careful (and obviously they were sort of practiced at this), but they were quite careful about how I might characterize their work with psychedelics, and they insisted that what they were doing was not unethical, they did not have money from the C.I.A., they had lots of checks and balances, and they were clearly responding to that very heavy reputation and characterization of psychedelics. And I reflect on that every once in a while, and wonder, ‘what would they would say today?’”

On Osmond and peyote: “It was the question of whether or not these chemicals and these rituals using chemicals should be allowed more broadly. And I think that the federal government in Canada was thinking that, again, this white-coated British guy would walk in and behave like the colonialist that they expected him to be, and come out and say ‘these are rotten ceremonies,’ but that was absolutely not who Humphry Osmond was. He participated fully. He chewed the buttons, he threw up, he participated in the feast afterwards, he participated in the drumming circle. ...So Osmond then made a statement (and he’s published about this in a variety of different places) saying this was an absolutely beautiful ceremony, it was absolutely sacred, it should be protected, it should be promoted, [and] people should be given access to peyote so that they continue this sacred ceremony. And the Canadian government was not impressed with this reaction.”

“Our governments are addicted to the war on drugs.”

“I think that part of what the psychedelic world needs to do, in my humble opinion, is to reach out and seek these kinds of bridges and these alliances, because I think that there’s a risk that we can just convince ourselves that psychedelics are good and that it won’t actually break through the psychedelic bubble, if you will, to convince regulators that in fact, there is real merit here. There’s still a sense that-- even just saying LSD- I gave a presentation last week to a group of retired physicians and these are people with medical training and who’ve spent their careers doing medical education and medical work, clinical work. And they’re like ‘oh, but LSD, that’s the one that fries your brain, right?’ I mean, these were disproven studies in the 70s, and yet it’s very interesting that that characterization is so strong.”

Links

Twitter

Chacruna.net: Women in psychedelics

Mescaline: A Global History of the First Psychedelic, by Mike Jay

The Seasteading Institute


About Erika Dyck

Erika Dyck is a professor and Canada Research Chair in the Department of History at the University of Saskatchewan. Her work focuses on 20th century medical history, especially the history of psychedelics, psychiatry, eugenics and population control. Her books include Psychedelic Psychiatry: LSD from Clinic to Campus (2008); Facing Eugenics: Reproduction, Sterilization, and the Politics of Choice (2013); Managing Madness: Weyburn Mental Hospital and the Transformation of Psychiatric Care in Canada(2017); and she is editor of A Culture’s Catalyst: Historical Encounters with Peyote and the Native American Church in Canada (2016) and co-editor of Psychedelic Prophets: The Letters of Aldous Huxley and Humphry Osmond (2018). She is a guest editor at the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines. You can email her at Erika.dyck@usask.ca. 

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Nov 10, 2020
PTSF 32 (with Will Hall)
01:32:54

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle continue their conversation from last week with Will Hall: therapist, host of the Madness Radio podcast, author of Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness, and previous psychiatric patient diagnosed with schizophrenia.

This week, Hall compares how the medical industry treats those seeking therapy and growth vs. how they treat the homeless and victims of sexual abuse, how the framework for mental disorders disrespects the individual, neoliberalism and why capitalism and the free market shouldn’t be the answer for everything, Grof's focus on etiology and why his model of spiritual emergence is problematic, the future of psychedelic advertising in a world where anything that can be sold will be sold, and the 3 biggest factors towards successful therapy.

And he focuses a lot on what we should be doing: creating and promoting individualized medicines and healing techniques over mass-produced Band-aid medicine, not reducing a difficult psychedelic experience to biology and instead focusing on getting to the root of what is causing the issue and working through it, not solely researching the effects of drugs, and most importantly, researching how people have bettered themselves without drugs- if the long-lasting effects of psychedelics and integration work are the catalyst for change, how can we get to those effects and integrations without the drug?

Notable Quotes

“Drugs are drugs. I don’t believe in psychedelic exceptionalism. I don’t believe in psychiatric drug exceptionalism. Drugs are drugs. There’s no exceptionalism for drugs. If they change your consciousness, they’re getting you high in one way or another, and that is what is either beneficial or nonbeneficial to you, based on your experience.”

“The people who are having successful treatment with MDMA psychotherapy- they aren’t just reporting ‘oh, my depression is down;’ they’re reporting all these wonderful benefits of MDMA. Why should we wait until you have a diagnosis of PTSD to give access to MDMA [to someone] if they want to experience those benefits as well? The people who are having the experiences of psychedelics are not having the experiences of disease-treatment, they’re having the experiences of psychedelics, which can be, for many people, very positive. So why are we gate-keeping the access? And if we don’t gate-keep the access, then we have to admit that, actually, it’s not a disease treatment; it’s actually something that many people find beneficial and some people don’t.”

“What is the commitment? Is the commitment to get psychedelic drugs accessible at all costs? And we’re going to lie, cheat, and steal our way to get there? Or is the commitment to trust that truth is the way? And if we just stick with the truth, that is how we change society?”

“I think you’re onto it. I mean, this is the key thing- psychedelics, in the best of contexts, is the pathway towards that. So why not study that? Why not research that? Why not invest the resources to exploring how we can create contexts for that which you’ve just described- create more spaces in society for successful encounters and engagements with openness, deeper relatedness, developing more trust, learning to communicate better, learning to form better community bonds, learning to develop our loyalties for each other, overcome our traumas together, tell our stories, overcome our shame, find ways that we can accept each other and support each other? That’s what we should be researching. That’s what we should be investigating, not psychedelic treatments that might have the effect of this, because this is what we’re really after.”

Links

Willhall.net

Madness Radio

Outsidementalhealth.com (info on his book, Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness)

The Heart and Soul of Change Project

Dreamshadow.com: Holotropic Breathwork, Personal Development, and Transpersonal Education

About Will Hall

Will is a counselor and facilitator working with individuals, couples, families and groups via phone and web video (Zoom). He has taught and consulted on mental health, trauma, psychosis, medications, domestic violence, conflict resolution, and organizational development in more than 30 countries, and has been widely featured in the media for his advocacy efforts around mental health care. His work and learning arose from his experiences of recovery from madness, and today he is passionate about new visions of mind and what it means to be human.


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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Nov 06, 2020
PT216 - Dr. Lynn Marie Morski - The Psychedelic Medicine Association
01:06:13

In this episode, Joe interviews MD, attorney, host of the Plant Medicine podcast, and founder of the Psychedelic Medicine Association, Dr. Lynn Marie Morski.

She talks about her time working for the United States Department of Veteran Affairs and how her frustrations with not being able to recommend medicines she knew would help people led to her creating the Plant Medicine podcast, and how realizing that the podcast wasn't reaching enough doctors led to her creating the Psychedelic Medicine Association. She discusses their goal: to bring organizations, corporate entities, lawyers, and practitioners/therapists (really anyone in the medical field responsible for the wellbeing of another) together through forums and newsletters to bridge the enormous gap between those on the cutting edge of new medicines and modalities of healing and the more traditional doctors who don't know nearly enough about this emerging world.

She talks about her podcast and dedicating 4 full episodes to each drug, common misconceptions about doctors and healthcare, what it's like to be both a doctor and a lawyer, doctors who judge patients for using cannabis and the disservice that is, the complications of what comes after the FDA approves a drug, what’s necessary for getting psychedelics more into mainstream culture, and the silver lining that could come from COVID and COVID-related trauma.

Notable Quotes

“It should not be weighing job security vs. saving veterans’ lives, but that’s really the position a lot of us are put in, and I couldn’t take that anymore, and so I left the VA and made it my mission to undo the years of silence by speaking out a whole lot about it.”

“FDA approval, for example, of MDMA or psilocybin, is just step 1. What do you do when you’ve got a medicine now approved that doctors are afraid to recommend or prescribe because it came out of nowhere? They’re like, ‘Whoa, psychedelics were Schedule I and extremely dangerous and ‘Don’t do drugs!’ and now I’m supposed to be giving it to a patient?’ That is a barrier.”

“We’ve known about the 22 veteran suicides, and somehow, still, things haven’t gotten done in mental health. Maybe because, again, that’s ‘other.’ We have this whole issue with others, right? ‘That’s happening to these other people over here.’ The pandemic is one of the first things in... ever that has happened to everybody. It’s not ‘Oh, only the poor get this.’ Nope. Poor and rich. Tom Hanks got it right off the bat. Everybody’s getting it. Prime Ministers get it. And a lot of people are suffering the same mental health issues from the quarantine and so, it’s no longer where we can say ‘Oh, mental health struggles are for others.’ This has hit everybody. ...The suicide rate is rising for everybody. Mental health issues are rising for everybody. Is this the tipping point where the mental health system looks around and says ‘Ok, our tools aren’t sufficient. Can we start looking at these other modalities, including psychedelics, because we’ve got a second epidemic on our hands here?’”

“It should be absolutely crucial for anybody on the front lines of patient care to know at least the basics of these medicines. We’re not trying to get doctors to all want to do psychedelic medicine at all. That’s not our goal. If people learn about it and get excited and want to get trained and do that? Fantastic. But we just want a basic level of knowledge, and like you said, if just 20% of doctors knew, that’d be great. And then those doctors can talk to their colleagues in other areas. But that’s essentially the way that we’re impressing it on people: ‘This is coming. You, as a professional responsible for other people’s health need to educate yourself on this.’”

Links

Psychedelicmedicineassociation.org

Psychedelic Medicine Association twitter

Plantmedicine.org

Plant Medicine Podcast: Antidepressants and Psychedelics with Clinical Pharmacist Ben Malcolm, PharmD

Plant Medicine Podcast: Microdosing Q&A with James Fadiman

Plant Medicine instagram

Psychedelics Today: Spiritual Emergence or Psychosis course

North Star Ethics Pledge

The Conscious Fund

Plant Parenthood podcast with Dr. Lynn Marie Morski


About Dr. Lynn Marie Morski

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Navigating Psychedelics

Nov 03, 2020
PT Solidarity Fridays - Episode 31 (with Will Hall)
59:21

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle switch things up and take a break from news stories. Instead, they interview therapist, host of the Madness Radio podcast, author of Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness, and previous psychiatric patient diagnosed with schizophrenia, Will Hall.

Hall says a lot that will challenge your ideas about the power of psychedelics and the progress of psychedelic medicine. From the idea of either/or thinking creating a legal/illegal paradigm, to the basic limitations of science, to the the near religious worship of neuroscience, to William James' idea of "medical materialism" and reducing the complexities of the human mind to simple biology, he points out the various flaws in psychedelic medicine and how psychedelic crusaders have ignored placebo results and focused on the power of a drug or the numbers behind a study over the power of therapy, the benefits of community and the mystery of consciousness and its differentiation from science. 

Notable Quotes

“If you end war-on-drugs prohibition in a context of heavily corrupted science, pharmaceutical company corruption, people that don’t have access to basic healthcare, they don’t have the basic context to be able to make smart choices, and you combine that with the profit motive in neoliberalism, then you’re going to have to really be very careful about how you do it, or else you’re going to have some very negative consequences. And this is a problem with any legalization.”

“We haven’t really had enough of a nuanced conversation about the war on drugs issue, because again, there has been such a strong-- I want to call it zealotry- this is an incredibly dedicated group of people who have been doing this for 30, 40, 50 years to get psychedelics into the hands of as many people as possible because they took LSD, they saw God, it saved their marriage, it completely revolutionized their trauma history- they’re true believers. And they’ve been pushing and pushing and pushing, but unfortunately, that doesn’t make for good public policy or good science if you’re just on a crusade. And I think that’s the big part of the problem that we’re facing right now.”

“Consciousness is like gravity. Consciousness is actually intrinsic to reality. Everything has consciousness. The more complicated the part of reality is (like, the human brain is very complicated), the more rich and complex consciousness becomes, and you get this self-awareness kind of thing. But the idea that consciousness is somehow located in the physiology of the brain and therefore ‘we’re going to study the physiology of the brain to explain consciousness’ is completely a leap of logic that has driven neuroscience for the last 40, 50 years since the real takeoff, and it’s been driven by pharma profits.” 

“You can create all kinds of things just through suggestion, just through expectation, just through placebo, and yet in the psychedelic science research, all that’s kind of put aside and they’re playing the same neuroscience game of thinking that we are pursuing and understanding of the biology of consciousness, which we’re not. And of course, it’s a gold rush.”

“We’re trying to describe this incredibly rich mysterious thing- human consciousness. Nobody even knows how to define it. The people who have been studying it for decades can’t even settle on a definition. You settle on a definition of gravity. You can settle on a definition of chemical reactions, because that’s the nature of that kind of science, but this is a field of science- psychology, which is so mysterious and so complicated, they can’t even agree on what it is that they’re studying. And now we’ve gone from this model that’s basically a steam engine model- there’s chemicals that are going through and they’re connecting and they’re flowing in different places. And that’s sort of antiquated, so now we have a computer model, which is about circuitry, networks, connectivity, pathways, and it’s just another cartoonish metaphor for something that we fundamentally don’t understand.”

“The fact that the marvel and the awe of what human consciousness is, what the human experience is, what the mystery is, that is so awakened for many people when we have a psychedelic experience- your mind is blown by how incredible, awesome, beautiful the mystery is, and then to take that and then go into graduate school and cut up mice and have this cartoonish, mechanistic version of what that consciousness is, seems to me like a real betrayal of what I think is the best of the psychedelic experience. 

“Under capitalism, under for-profit healthcare system, under corporate-driven science, science has become a politicized and profit-driven racket. All of those researchers are playing a game of ‘How do we get press releases that get media hits and clicks that’s going to help our grant possibilities?” and it always comes with ‘Well, we have this promising new discovery- the default mode network is a promising new discovery. We need more research about this.’ And what we need to do is we need to really really rethink our entire orientation to science in a capitalist society.” 

“I think that once MDMA becomes available and more widespread, we’re going to see the efficacy go down. It’s not going to help everybody. It’s going to be another thing that some people try and some people, it helps them, but it didn’t really quite do it and then they have to kind of go back and they do more and then they lose the magic of the MDMA and then we’re back on the treadmill. We went from antidepressants to MDMA, and then what’s the next drug? There’s no drug solution to these problems, folks. We have to change our society. ...Until we actually look at social changes, we’re not ever really going to solve these so-called mental health problems. But that’s not the kind of thing you want to talk about at a MAPS-sponsored conference, because it’s a buzzkill. It just bums everybody out. People want to have their careers, they want to have their focus, their advocacy, their crusade, their excitement, and their community of other people who are excited.”

“I’m not sure that psychedelics should even be in the realm of medicine or science because of the way in which our society has so limited and made narrow those endeavors- the idea that medicine is separate from spirituality or that science is about reproducible results when the whole universe is based on uniqueness and novelty and the unexpected and synchronicity, I think that trying to squeeze them into those frameworks is not going to work.”

Links

Willhall.net

Madness Radio

Outsidementalhealth.com (info on his book, Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness)

The Freedom Center

Mcgill.ca: The placebo effect and psychedelic drugs: tripping on nothing?


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Navigating Psychedelics

 

 

Oct 30, 2020
PT215 - Cultivating Connections - The Power of Rituals
51:43
Joe interviews Ryan and Rory of Cultivating Connections, a nonprofit and podcast dedicated to fostering deeper connection through intentioned rituals. They discuss ayahuasca, embracing fear, and the power of eye-gazing. 
 

Oct 27, 2020
PT Solidarity Fridays - Episode 30
01:22:36
Joe and Kyle discuss recent studies on salvia and LSD, intergenerational trauma, the idea of "group soul,” the lymphatic system and the brain, concussions, caesarian sections, QAnon, 9/11 and what truth really is for people. 
 

Oct 23, 2020
PT214 - Dr. Michael Sapiro - Engaged Spirituality: Bringing the Mystical Into the Ordinary
01:15:12
Kyle interviews Doctor of Psychology and former Buddhist monk, Dr. Michael Sapiro. They talk about his recent travel pilgrimage, the importance of self-focus, tools for healing and growth, and how to make the mystical ordinary.
 

Oct 20, 2020
PT Solidarity Fridays - Episode 29
50:39
In this Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle discuss CNN’s recent report on Brian Muraresku's book, The Immortality Key: The Secret History of the Religion with No Name, and talk about accountability in the psychedelic space.
 

Oct 16, 2020
PT213 - Dr. Matt Brown - Osteopathy and Exploring Energy
01:10:35
Joe interviews psychiatrist and DO, Dr. Matt Brown. They talk about osteopathic medicine, how energy works within the body, the Integratron, LSD and the Mind of the Universe, Stan Grof, and why people should read more sci-fi.  
 

Oct 14, 2020
PTSF 28
59:08
Joe and Kyle discuss several news items, touching on Mark Zuckerberg, Oregon’s Measures 109/110, THC and the 5-HTA receptor, Sansero Life Sciences, MindMed, Field Trip Health, COVID-related city changes, and the placebo effect. 
 

Oct 09, 2020
PT212 - Zoe Helene - Colonization, Coevolution, and Cosmic Sisterhood
02:06:22
In this episode, Joe interviews Zoe Helene, founder of Cosmic Sister. They cover a wide range of topics including colonization, coevolution/coextinction, the Mycenean, Minoan, and Greek civilizations, and Black Lives Matter. 
 

Oct 06, 2020
Solidarity Fridays 27
59:30
Joe and Kyle discuss the effectiveness of group therapy in psilocybin sessions, AI therapy, Decriminalize Nature opposing Oregon Psilocybin Service measure 109, and Dr. Bronner pulling funding from national DN initiatives.  
 

Oct 02, 2020
Del Jolly - Psilocybin, Concussions and Unlimited Sciences' Mission
01:08:43
In this episode, Joe interviews Del Jolly, co-founder and Director of psychedelic research nonprofit Unlimited Sciences. They talk about Charlotte’s Web, Cannabis Moms, The Realm of Caring, athletes and concussions, and psilocybin.
 

Sep 29, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 26
57:32
Joe and Kyle discuss items in the news, including Ann Arbor, Michigan voting to decriminalize entheogenic plants, the formation of the Psychedelic Medicine Association, Compass Pathways going live on the stock market, and more. 
 

Sep 25, 2020
Vanessa LeMaistre - Embracing a Path to Spiritual Discovery
01:10:38

Joe interviews Vanessa LeMaistre: motivational speaker, author, minister, and healer. She discusses her path to shamanism, ayahuasca, entities, Michael Harner, Voodoo, and being a multi-raced woman in the psychedelic sphere.

www.psychedelicstoday.com  

Sep 22, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 25
01:06:18
Joe and Kyle discuss items in the news, including Compass Pathways, Peter Thiel, UC Berkeley launching a new center for psychedelic science and education, Dr. Bronner’s “Heal Soul” campaign, and cannabis-assisted psychotherapy. 
 

Sep 18, 2020
Ash - CBD, Nootropics, and Micro1p
01:18:54
In this episode, Joe interviews Ash, Netherlands-based psychedelic entrepreneur behind Synergy Trading, Cerebra Nootropics, the Shifty Perspective podcast, and the world's first legal lysergamide microdosing product, Micro1p.
 

Sep 12, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 24
01:01:50
Joe and Kyle discuss corporate news, including HAVN Lifescience, Synthesis, AWAKN Life Sciences, and Field Trip Psychedelics’ new “Trip" app. They also cover neural plasticity, Rick Strassman, DMT, and the dangers of isolation.
 

Sep 10, 2020
Wade Davis - Ayahuasca and a New Hope for Colombia
01:23:55
In this episode, Joe interviews Wade Davis: anthropologist, ethnobotanist, star of El Sendero de la Anaconda, and author of "Serpent and the Rainbow" and "Magdalena: River of Dreams: A Story of Colombia," which comes out 9/15. 
 

Sep 08, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 23
53:29
Joe and Kyle discuss recent news items, including a new LSD microdose study on acute pain, Compass Pathways filing an application for a NASDAQ listing, and Mind Medicine Australia attempting to de-schedule psilocybin and MDMA.
 

Sep 04, 2020
Sara Reed - Ketamine Therapy Through a Culturally Responsible Lens
01:06:12
Joe and Kyle interview Sara Reed, MS, LMFT, and Director of Psychedelic Services at the Behavioral Wellness Clinic in CT, about her ketamine-assisted therapy practice, working with Dr. Monica Williams and MAPS, and more.    
 

Sep 01, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 22
01:14:46
Joe and Kyle discuss recent items in the news, including MAPS’ Capstone Campaign, MindMed’s upcoming candy flipping phase 1 trial, and Oregon’s upcoming psilocybin ballot measure. They then have a larger discussion about lineage.
 

Aug 28, 2020
Dr. LaMisha Hill - The Fight for Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity
01:15:38

In this episode, Joe interviews Dr. LaMisha Hill, licensed Counseling Psychologist and Director of Multicultural Affairs for the Office of Diversity and Outreach at UCSF. They talk about the effects of race and gender in the psychedelic world. 

www.psychedelicstoday.com

Aug 25, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 21
01:01:28
Joe and Kyle discuss recent items in the news, including the passing of Tav Sparks and Jordi Riba, the Netflix docuseries “Unwell,” and Bright Minds Bioscience’s recent claims that they are shortening trip times to 60-90 minutes. 
 

Aug 21, 2020
Jerry and Julie Brown - Healing Through Mystical Experience
01:06:12

In this episode, Joe interviews Jerry and Julie Brown. Jerry (Ph.D.) is an author and activist, who served as founding professor of anthropology at Florida International University in Miami for 42 years. Julie (M.A.) is an author and integrative psychotherapist, who worked with cancer patients with a focus on guided imagery. Together, they are co-authors of The Psychedelic Gospels: The Secret History of Hallucinogens in Christianity.

 

They talk about their blogpost on Psychedelics Today and inspiring studies: Walter Pahnke’s original psilocybin study at Marsh Chapel and Roland Griffiths’ recent studies at Johns Hopkins and the amazing results at each, Robin Carhart-Harris’ MRI analysis, and some of Julie’s successes using guided imagery to empower 3 cancer clients to heal after conventional cancer treatment was ineffective.

They talk about guided imagery and the body’s ability to heal itself, how mystical states actually help heal people, how disease starts in the mind, Ancient Greece’s psychedelic Rites of Eleusis, and their own personal life-changing psychedelic experiences related to Johns Hopkins’ 5 common elements of mystical experience.

And they talk about their most popular book, The Psychedelic Gospels: The Secret History of Hallucinogens in Christianity, which highlights images of mushrooms and psychedelic art found throughout Christian history (all the way back to Gnostic Gospels), and their possible relationship to the birth of Christianity and the story of Jesus. 

Notable Quotes

“The questions are: Can psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy be used not only to alleviate the psychological anxiety (as we saw at Johns Hopkins) and the depression, but can it also be used to facilitate the physiological healing in cancer patients, as Julie has done through facilitating mystical experiences? That’s a big question. The second one is: in time, are we going to see what today, is long-term costly, clinical psychotherapy of a variety of different modalities, eventually be enhanced by short-term, much more affordable psychedelic psychotherapy?” -Jerry Brown

“In astrophysics, dark matter, which they say makes up most of the universe- it can not be directly detected or seen. It can only be implied through the gravitational effects that it causes. So, in psychology, mystical experience cannot be easily accessed, but it can be reliably created both through psychedelics, and as Julie’s work has shown, through guided imagery. In other words, hidden from ordinary consciousness, mystical experience manifests from the dark matter of the mind to facilitate healing.” -Jerry Brown 

“F. Scott Fitzgerald, the author, said there’s no second acts in American lives, but fortunately, psychedelics is having its second act, and I think if we do it right this time, we can really integrate it into our culture, both in a therapeutic setting, and [also in settings] modeled after the Greek Eleusinian mysteries, where healthy people can go to explore psychedelics for personal growth and for spirituality and creativity.” -Jerry Brown

Links

Psychedelics Today blog: Mystical Experience and Psychedelic-Assisted Psychotherapy: Insights from Guided-Imagery Therapy with Cancer Patients

Website: psychedelicgospels.com

Psychedelic Gospels Facebook

The Psychedelic Gospels: Evidence of Entheogens in Christian Art presentation on Youtube

Email


About Jerry and Julie Brown

Jerry B. Brown, Ph.D., is an anthropologist, author, and activist. From 1972 to 2014, he served as founding professor of anthropology at Florida International University in Miami, where he taught a course on “Hallucinogens and Culture.” Julie M. Brown, M.A., LMHC, is an integrative psychotherapist, who works with cancer patients. They are coauthors of The Psychedelic Gospels: The Secret History of Hallucinogens in Christianity, 2016; “Entheogens in Christian Art: Wasson, Allegro and the Psychedelic Gospels,” Journal of Psychedelic Studies, 2019; and “Mystical Experience and Psychedelic-Assisted Psychotherapy: Insights from Guided Imagery Therapy with Cancer Patients,” Psychedelics Today, May 28, 2020.

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Aug 18, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 20
57:55

In today's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle talk about recent items in the news and dive deep into Stan Grof's work, different types of therapy, and the way touch comes into play in the therapeutic world. 

They first discuss Wisconsin-based non-profit medical research institution, The Usona Institute, and their recently published new method for synthesizing psilocybin, and how great this is for the community. There is a danger to locking away ideas, and new methods of synthesis could lead to monopolization of the market, but publishing their findings means this can be available to all. 

They then talk about re-reading Grof and the concept of the body's inner radar bringing forth what the inner healer needs to work on, and the idea that hyperventilation could be the body trying to heal itself. This leads to discussion of Kyle's time at a Soteria-inspired house in Burlington and their method of simply sitting with people and being there through difficult times. They then discuss different types of therapy, from how traditional talk therapy seems to be more of an art form rather than a measurable methodology, to Grof's Fusion Therapy (which is a type of therapy involving touch that may be over the line by today's standards), to new sex therapies that are starting to make headway. The main threads through this discussion are touch: when can touch be used safely, the dangers of touch being perceived as sexual, and the importance of communication and boundary-setting before sessions, and distraction vs. work: when is a participant wanting to talk about things during a session part of the work and important to respect, and when is it simply a distraction and a way to avoid the work?

Lastly, they remind us that seats are still on sale for the 2 new rounds of (now CE-approved) Navigating Psychedelics (beginning on September 17th), "Psychedelics and the Shadow: The Shadow Side of Psychedelia" is on sale, and there is a new class developed with Johanna Hilla-Maria Sopanen called "Imagination as Revelation," focusing on Jungian psychology and how it can be applied to understanding psychedelic experience.

Notable quotes

“A corporation finding a new synthesis and being able to patent that and then kind of locking it away and saying ‘It stays within our corporation and we’re the only ones that can produce this in this way’ doesn’t mean that other people can’t find other ways.” -Kyle

“In holotropic breathwork, Stan [Grof] talks about how if someone doesn’t land by the end of the workshop and get somewhat settled and resolved, a traditional psychiatrist might say ‘ok yes, this is a psychotic break.' And what do we do? You do your normal interventions. So, optimal for the breathwork and psychedelic world would be to have a place where folks could go and be for days to months to settle and kind of reorganize. That’s the model of spiritual emergence, I think, that Stan talks about. You have to have really careful discussions and criteria for: psychotic break? Or possible spiritual emergence? Or, what’s the real difference?” -Joe 

“I definitely saw some magic, by just being with people, not trying to really change their experience.” -Kyle

“I think delaying is really undervalued. You want to do just the right thing at just the right time. Well, what if you do the wrong thing? Why not wait, so you don’t do the wrong thing?” -Joe

Links

Usona Institute Publishes Breakthrough Development in Scalable Psilocybin Synthesis

Direct Phosphorylation of Psilocin Enables Optimized cGMP Kilogram-Scale Manufacture of Psilocybin (scientific breakdown)

Psychedelics Today: "Spiritual Emergence or Psychosis" Webinar

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Aug 14, 2020
Court Wing - Pain and Its Relationship to the Mind
01:30:01

In this episode, Joe interviews Court Wing: early adopter of kettlebell training, earner of a 3rd degree black belt in Ki-Aikido, first certified CrossFit instructor for the NYC Metro area, first certified Z-Health instructor in New York, and former co-founder of CrossFit NYC; one of the world's largest CrossFit gyms. 

Wing was a recent participant of a psilocybin trial in NYC, studying the effects of psilocybin on (mostly treatment-resistant) major depressive disorder. He talks about his struggles with depression and how reading studies about changes in neuroplasticity and neurogenesis made him wonder if his depression could be alleviated, the measures taken and process surrounding the trials, the concerns over receiving a placebo or the psilocybin not working, and post-trial; the amazing transformation he's gone through and the power of his experience, psilocybin, and intention-setting. 

They talk a lot about pain and the ways pain is related to the mind: the concept that depression may be a nociceptive pain, how common back pain may often be somatosensory pain based on emotional trauma creating a neurological link (similar to Grof's COEX system), and the Ki-Aikido phrase: "Your mind is the body made subtle. The body is unrefined mind." How much of pain is emotional, and how much is the body trying to communicate to the mind that a change needs to be made?

Notable Quotes

“I can see, going in now, the difference that intention makes in what you’re seeking from the session. It’s just astonishing that it’s responsive to intent. ...It’s so mindblowing because you’re not just taking this passively.”

“The contrast from before to after made me want to go back and upgrade my scores in those depression assessments because I had no idea how bad it was until it was gone. And it was in less than 8 hours. ...We did a little intention-setting ceremony, and I did a little Shinto type of prayer thing- [an] incantation that I’ve always done since I left Aikido, and they gave it to me and put in this chalice, and I looked down at it, and honestly, I was praying to God or my higher power or the universe (however you want to phrase it). I looked at it and said, ‘I really hope that’s you.’ And it was.”

“I had been in recovery from a profound drinking problem for over 17 years, so there’d been significant hesitation on my part to do this, because there’s a lot of cautioning within that framework- you know: ‘there’s no such thing as a chemical solution to a spiritual problem.’ But, what do you do when the chemistry brings you a spiritual experience?”

“A false picture has been painted of what’s possible here. And when it’s only seen in a recreational context where they use some slightly marginalized, perverse catchphrase like ‘hippies’ or ‘dirty hippies’ or something like that, and use that as a way to blame and shame people for seeking relief, and even worse- to claim that the results they’re bringing back are invalid, I think that’s a crime. I honestly do. If I can bring any of my previous experience and reputation to weigh on the scale of the good that can be caused from this, I’m happy to do it.”

Links

courtwing.com


About Court Wing

Court Wing has been a professional in the performance and rehab space for the last 30 years. Coming from a performing arts background, Court served as a live-in apprentice to the US Chief Instructor for Ki-Aikido for five years, going on to win the gold medal for the International Competitors Division in Japan in 2000 and achieving the rank of 3rd degree black belt.
After a 14 year career in martial arts, he returned to Acting, getting his BFA from the Conservatory of Theatre Arts & Film at Purchase College. At the same time, he was simultaneously pursuing three leading-edge performance certifications. First as an RKC/Strong First kettlebell instructor, eventually going on to be ranked a "Top 10 Instructor" and assisting a closed-course certification of SEAL Team 6 at Virginia Beach. Next he became the first certified CrossFit trainer in NYC, becoming the former co-founder of CrossFit NYC in '04, New York's largest and oldest CF gym. His final certification was as a Z-Health Master Trainer, using the latest interventions in applied neuro-physiology for remarkable improvements in pain, performance, and rehabilitation.

He has also served as the principal designer for the UN's Close Protection fitness assessment and preparation program, and has been featured in the New York Time’s Sunday Routine, Men's Fitness, and USA Today.

Please visit him online at https://courtwing.com

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Aug 11, 2020
Court Wing - Pain and Its Relationship to the Mind

In this episode, Joe interviews Court Wing: early adopter of kettlebell training, earner of a 3rd degree black belt in Ki-Aikido, first certified CrossFit instructor for the NYC Metro area, first certified Z-Health instructor in New York, and Former co-founder of CrossFit NYC; one of the world's largest CrossFit gyms. 

Wing was a recent participant of a psilocybin trial in NYC, studying the effects of psilocybin on (mostly treatment-resistant) major depressive disorder. He talks about his struggles with depression and how reading studies about changes in neuroplasticity and neurogenesis made him wonder if his depression could be alleviated, the measures taken and process surrounding the trials, the concerns over receiving a placebo or the psilocybin not working, and post-trial; the amazing transformation he's gone through and the power of his experience, psilocybin, and intention-setting. 

They talk a lot about pain and the ways pain is related to the mind: the concept that depression may be a nociceptive pain, how common back pain may often be somatosensory pain based on emotional trauma creating a neurological link (similar to Grof's COEX system), and the Ki-Aikido phrase: "Your mind is the body made subtle. The body is unrefined mind." How much of pain is emotional, and how much is the body trying to communicate to the mind that a change needs to be made?

Notable Quotes

“I can see, going in now, the difference that intention makes in what you’re seeking from the session. It’s just astonishing that it’s responsive to intent. ...It’s so mindblowing because you’re not just taking this passively.”

“The contrast from before to after made me want to go back and upgrade my scores in those depression assessments because I had no idea how bad it was until it was gone. And it was in less than 8 hours. ...We did a little intention-setting ceremony, and I did a little Shinto type of prayer thing- [an] incantation that I’ve always done since I left Aikido, and they gave it to me and put in this chalice, and I looked down at it, and honestly, I was praying to God or my higher power or the universe (however you want to phrase it). I looked at it and said, ‘I really hope that’s you.’ And it was.”

“I had been in recovery from a profound drinking problem for over 17 years, so there’d been significant hesitation on my part to do this, because there’s a lot of cautioning within that framework- you know: ‘there’s no such thing as a chemical solution to a spiritual problem.’ But, what do you do when the chemistry brings you a spiritual experience?”

“A false picture has been painted of what’s possible here. And when it’s only seen in a recreational context where they use some slightly marginalized, perverse catchphrase like ‘hippies’ or ‘dirty hippies’ or something like that, and use that as a way to blame and shame people for seeking relief, and even worse- to claim that the results they’re bringing back are invalid, I think that’s a crime. I honestly do. If I can bring any of my previous experience and reputation to weigh on the scale of the good that can be caused from this, I’m happy to do it.”

Links

courtwing.com


About Court Wing

Court Wing has been a professional in the performance and rehab space for the last 30 years. Coming from a performing arts background, Court served as a live-in apprentice to the US Chief Instructor for Ki-Aikido for five years, going on to win the gold medal for the International Competitors Division in Japan in 2000 and achieving the rank of 3rd degree black belt.
After a 14 year career in martial arts, he returned to Acting, getting his BFA from the Conservatory of Theatre Arts & Film at Purchase College. At the same time, he was simultaneously pursuing three leading-edge performance certifications. First as an RKC/Strong First kettlebell instructor, eventually going on to be ranked a "Top 10 Instructor" and assisting a closed-course certification of SEAL Team 6 at Virginia Beach. Next he became the first certified CrossFit trainer in NYC, becoming the former co-founder of CrossFit NYC in '04, New York's largest and oldest CF gym. His final certification was as a Z-Health Master Trainer, using the latest interventions in applied neuro-physiology for remarkable improvements in pain, performance, and rehabilitation.

He has also served as the principal designer for the UN's Close Protection fitness assessment and preparation program, and has been featured in the New York Time’s Sunday Routine, Men's Fitness, and USA Today.

Please visit him online at https://courtwing.com

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Navigating Psychedelics

Aug 11, 2020
Court Wing - Pain and Its Relationship to the Mind

In this episode, Joe interviews Court Wing: early adopter of kettlebell training, earner of a 3rd degree black belt in Ki-Aikido, first certified CrossFit instructor for the NYC Metro area, first certified Z-Health instructor in New York, and co-founder & co-owner of CrossFit NYC; one of the world's largest CrossFit gyms. 

Wing was a recent participant of a psilocybin trial in NYC, studying the effects of psilocybin on (mostly treatment-resistant) major depressive disorder. He talks about his struggles with depression and how reading studies about changes in neuroplasticity and neurogenesis made him wonder if his depression could be alleviated, the measures taken and process surrounding the trials, the concerns over receiving a placebo or the psilocybin not working, and post-trial; the amazing transformation he's gone through and the power of his experience, psilocybin, and intention-setting. 

They talk a lot about pain and the ways pain is related to the mind: the concept that depression may be a nociceptive pain, how common back pain may often be somatosensory pain based on emotional trauma creating a neurological link (similar to Grof's COEX system), and the Ki-Aikido phrase: "Your mind is the body made subtle. The body is unrefined mind." How much of pain is emotional, and how much is the body trying to communicate to the mind that a change needs to be made?

Notable Quotes

“I can see, going in now, the difference that intention makes in what you’re seeking from the session. It’s just astonishing that it’s responsive to intent. ...It’s so mindblowing because you’re not just taking this passively.”

“The contrast from before to after made me want to go back and upgrade my scores in those depression assessments because I had no idea how bad it was until it was gone. And it was in less than 8 hours. ...We did a little intention-setting ceremony, and I did a little Shinto type of prayer thing- [an] incantation that I’ve always done since I left Aikido, and they gave it to me and put in this chalice, and I looked down at it, and honestly, I was praying to God or my higher power or the universe (however you want to phrase it). I looked at it and said, ‘I really hope that’s you.’ And it was.”

“I had been in recovery from a profound drinking problem for over 17 years, so there’d been significant hesitation on my part to do this, because there’s a lot of cautioning within that framework- you know: ‘there’s no such thing as a chemical solution to a spiritual problem.’ But, what do you do when the chemistry brings you a spiritual experience?”

“A false picture has been painted of what’s possible here. And when it’s only seen in a recreational context where they use some slightly marginalized, perverse catchphrase like ‘hippies’ or ‘dirty hippies’ or something like that, and use that as a way to blame and shame people for seeking relief, and even worse- to claim that the results they’re bringing back are invalid, I think that’s a crime. I honestly do. If I can bring any of my previous experience and reputation to weigh on the scale of the good that can be caused from this, I’m happy to do it.”

Links

courtwing.com


About Court Wing

Court Wing has been a professional in the performance and rehab space for the last 30 years. Coming from a performing arts background, Court served as a live-in apprentice to the US Chief Instructor for Ki-Aikido for five years, going on to win the gold medal for the International Competitors Division in Japan in 2000 and achieving the rank of 3rd degree black belt.
After a 14 year career in martial arts, he returned to Acting, getting his BFA from the Conservatory of Theatre Arts & Film at Purchase College. At the same time, he was simultaneously pursuing three leading-edge performance certifications. First as an RKC/Strong First kettlebell instructor, eventually going on to be ranked a "Top 10 Instructor" and assisting a closed-course certification of SEAL Team 6 at Virginia Beach. Next he became the first certified CrossFit trainer in NYC, becoming the former co-founder of CrossFit NYC in '04, New York's largest and oldest CF gym. His final certification was as a Z-Health Master Trainer, using the latest interventions in applied neuro-physiology for remarkable improvements in pain, performance, and rehabilitation.

He has also served as the principal designer for the UN's Close Protection fitness assessment and preparation program, and has been featured in the New York Time’s Sunday Routine, Men's Fitness, and USA Today.

Please visit him online at https://courtwing.com

Support the show

Navigating Psychedelics

Aug 11, 2020
Court Wing - Pain and Its Relationship to the Mind

In this episode, Joe interviews Court Wing: early adopter of kettlebell training, earner of a 3rd degree black belt in Ki-Aikido, first certified CrossFit instructor for the NYC Metro area, first certified Z-Health instructor in New York, and co-founder & co-owner of CrossFit NYC; one of the world's largest CrossFit gyms. 

Wing was a recent participant of a psilocybin trial in NYC, studying the effects of psilocybin on (mostly treatment-resistant) major depressive disorder. He talks about his struggles with depression and how reading studies about changes in neuroplasticity and neurogenesis made him wonder if his depression could be alleviated, the measures taken and process surrounding the trials, the concerns over receiving a placebo or the psilocybin not working, and post-trial; the amazing transformation he's gone through and the power of his experience, psilocybin, and intention-setting. 

They talk a lot about pain and the ways pain is related to the mind: the concept that depression may be a nociceptive pain, how common back pain may often be somatosensory pain based on emotional trauma creating a neurological link (similar to Grof's COEX system), and the Ki-Aikido phrase: "Your mind is the body made subtle. The body is unrefined mind." How much of pain is emotional, and how much is the body trying to communicate to the mind that a change needs to be made?

Notable Quotes

“I can see, going in now, the difference that intention makes in what you’re seeking from the session. It’s just astonishing that it’s responsive to intent. ...It’s so mindblowing because you’re not just taking this passively.”

“The contrast from before to after made me want to go back and upgrade my scores in those depression assessments because I had no idea how bad it was until it was gone. And it was in less than 8 hours. ...We did a little intention-setting ceremony, and I did a little Shinto type of prayer thing- [an] incantation that I’ve always done since I left Aikido, and they gave it to me and put in this chalice, and I looked down at it, and honestly, I was praying to God or my higher power or the universe (however you want to phrase it). I looked at it and said, ‘I really hope that’s you.’ And it was.”

“I had been in recovery from a profound drinking problem for over 17 years, so there’d been significant hesitation on my part to do this, because there’s a lot of cautioning within that framework- you know: ‘there’s no such thing as a chemical solution to a spiritual problem.’ But, what do you do when the chemistry brings you a spiritual experience?”

“A false picture has been painted of what’s possible here. And when it’s only seen in a recreational context where they use some slightly marginalized, perverse catchphrase like ‘hippies’ or ‘dirty hippies’ or something like that, and use that as a way to blame and shame people for seeking relief, and even worse- to claim that the results they’re bringing back are invalid, I think that’s a crime. I honestly do. If I can bring any of my previous experience and reputation to weigh on the scale of the good that can be caused from this, I’m happy to do it.”

Links

courtwing.com


About Court Wing

Court Wing has been training clients and students in fitness and the martial arts for 30 years.  He began his CrossFit training with Nick Nibbler & Dave Werner of CrossFit North in Seattle, the world's first CrossFit affiliate, in late Winter '03 while on a break from the renowned Acting Conservatory at Purchase College in New York, one of the top three Acting Programs in the US. He returned to train with them that summer and earned his CrossFit Level 1 trainer certificate in July '04 (first certification outside of CFHQ), becoming the NYC Metro area's first certified CrossFit instructor. He began doing workouts in the Central Park that Fall and is the Co-Founder & Co-Owner of CrossFit NYC, the world's largest affiliate, as well as New York's oldest & largest.

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Aug 11, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 19
01:04:47

In today's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and talk about recent items in the news, and dive deep into analyzing 2 articles that are very critical of MAPS' involvement with the police, military, and government. 

They first discuss Canada-based nonprofit TheraPsil's recent win of four people with incurable cancer being granted the ability to use psilocybin for end-of-life therapy, and how this framework could be copied and used in the US through the Right-to-try act, signed into law in 2018.  

They then discuss Dimitri Mugianis's recent article in Salon, which highlighted the long history of psychedelics being used in negative ways, from Vikings presumably using some sort of mushroom to get to a pillaging, "Berserker warrior" mindstate, to the 11th century Nizari Isma'ili State, which reportedly used hashish as a tool for motivation and control, to MKUltra and experiments on Whitey Bulger, to the most recent death of Elijah McLain from a large forced injection of ketamine. And they discuss David Nickles's article in Psymposia, which poses that since MAPS is working to provide treatment to police and soldiers with PTSD, they are essentially in bed with the enemy, and only promoting organizations that create more violence, division, trauma, and PTSD, while treating the perpetrators instead of the victims. 

Both articles are critical of MAPS but neglect to see the importance of diplomacy and working to see eye to eye with people in disagreement for the greater good- that yes, these tools can be used against people, but can also be used by people, with immense benefits. Joe reads a comment sent in by listener Danny McCraken, pointing out that "as the saying goes, ‘only Siths deal in absolutes.’" This leads to more discussion: when and how should ketamine be used for submission? Why do healthy, trained cops need to even get to that point? How much of this is just governments trying to make the costs of war cheaper? Why don't more people see things from all sides?

Lastly, they remind us that on September 17th, 2 new rounds of (now CE-approved) Navigating Psychedelics will be starting up, and there is a new class for sale developed with Johanna Hilla-Maria Sopanen called "Imagination as Revelation," which focuses on Jungian psychology and how it can be applied to understanding psychedelic experience.

 

Notable quotes

“I remember when we chatted with Dr. Katherine MacLean way, way back when we first got it rolling. Something that she said- ‘it’s almost like a birthright for us to try to prepare for death. And do we have to wait to have some sort of end-of-life illness, or can we start trying to prepare a little bit earlier?’ Just really awesome to see that these 4 patients will be able to have an experience and maybe discover things about themselves during their last time here. So congrats TheraPsil for making that work for these folks.” -Kyle

“From the anarchist perspective, this just helps governments, which are typically organizations that have monopolies on power (what anarchists are against, primarily). So any kind of government that’s using tools against people is bad, and these are tools that are being used against people. They’re also being used for people. It’s this weird dichotomy of: these things have such huge healing benefit for so many different types of people, and they can also be used to support things that are against people, like any tool. Like a knife or a gun- it can be used to save a life or take a life.” -Joe 

“Is this what we want? Last episode, we talked a lot about decriminalization vs. legalization, and we didn’t really talk about how that contrasts with medicalization. Do we really want these powerful people in groups telling you when you can and cannot take these things? I think the answer is no. We don’t want that. We want autonomy. We want cognitive liberty. We want to not go to jail for this stuff. We want safe access.” -Joe

“Essentially, the critique is that MAPS is supporting cops (PTSD) and soldiers (PTSD), and as a result, MAPS is supporting violent organizations that are causing more PTSD, and treating the perpetrators vs. treating the victims. I understand why they would write this article, but I think it’s not done in good taste. I think it’s not necessarily aware of the broader implications of these things coming to market and being prescribable and healing a lot of people. But it is helpful in that it says, ‘Look, cops are doing bad stuff. Military has done bad stuff. Should we be supporting it?’ ...How do we balance those two things? ...I think MAPS is almost at the finish line, so I’m going to cheerlead for MAPS to finish [and] cross the line with MDMA, even though they’re kind of pandering to the militarized people who have a monopoly on violence, both inside and outside of the country.” -Joe

Links

4 Palliative Canadians approved for end of life psilocybin therapy

BP will slash oil production by 40% and pour billions into green energy

Salon: How psychedelic drugs are used as a tool of state violence

Psymposia: We Need to Talk About MAPS Supporting The Police, The Military, and Violent White Supremacism

Psychedelics Today- Imagination as Revelation: The Psychedelic Experience in the Light of Jungian Psychology

 

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Aug 07, 2020
John Selby - Professional Guidance Integrating Cannabis and Mindfulness
01:08:33

In today's episode, Joe speaks with spiritual coach, author, and creator of the upcoming High Together app, John Selby. Selby's most recent book is titled Cannabis for Couples: Enhance Intimacy and Elevate Your Relationship.

Selby talks about how he got to where he is today, from signing up for a hypnosis research center at Princeton that turned out to be a secret government NIH psychedelic research center studying if psychedelic states could be induced through hypnosis, to working on the first quantitative EG study of heavy LSD users to determine if it caused permanent damage (that was marred with corrupted data and later found out to have been an MKUltra mind manipulation project), to becoming excommunicated by the Presbyterian church for teaching his youth group yoga and Buddhist meditation, to becoming a therapist, spiritual counselor and author, to his time at Microsoft and Plantronics leading to him wanting to create an app for improving cannabis use.

His High Together app (which should be available soon) works in conjunction with his latest book to help cannabis users focus their attention, augment consciousness, and in the case of couples, improve their relationships. Through short guided sessions, statements of intent, and a strong emphasis on breathwork, his goal is to help regular users aim their attention towards more rewarding ventures, and help new users get through their first cannabis experiences safely and enjoyably (some estimate that 10 million boomer couples will try cannabis for the first time within the next 2-3 years).

Notable Quotes

On leaving Plantronics: “Right when it was time to do the funding and to launch this as their first software product in your headphones, two people on the board- these two old guys- Presbyterian guys- they decided that I was some sort of subterfuge revolutionary trying to undermine American capitalism. And I had to say, ‘I think you’ve got that just about right.’” 

On his High Together App: “It’s everything that I’ve found, as a therapist and spiritual guide, that’s really, really effective for helping people to focus their attention in directions that augment higher consciousness. We can either get stoned, or we can get high, and people don’t realize that really, they have the choice.”

“Most of the people, they really need help in the basics. It’s very scary for most people. If you’re 60 years old and you’ve never basically let go of control of your ego, it’s like ‘WHOA!’ I’m there to help people make it safely and enjoyably through that first 10 minutes, when you actually have the muse of marijuana come in and say ‘Okay, here we go! Let go- there’s nothing you can do about this, so enjoy the ride.’”

“There’s a pretty sober sense of responsibility that we really have a world civilization that can really self destruct if we don’t wake up and act. I think that cannabis and psychedelics are powerful medicines to help us in that direction.”

Links

Website: mindfullyhigh.com

Cannabis for Couples: Enhance Intimacy and Elevate Your Relationship


About John Selby

John is both a fiction and non-fiction author with over thirty published self-help/meditation books plus eleven feature screenplays and half a dozen novels and 40 published folk-jazz songs. John's most recent book is titled Cannabis for Couples: Enhance Intimacy and Elevate Your Relationship. Over the years he has been a cognitive therapist and spiritual counselor, and conducted NIH brain-research studies examining the inner mechanics of mindfulness meditation. John has taught creative writing and publishing strategies, coached authors in book-project development, and ghostwritten over a dozen books for aspiring authors on a wide variety of themes and genres. He now continues with this satisfying work, while also developing a new app-driven approach to mindfulness training and personality growth.

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Aug 04, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 18
01:00:19

In today's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down to discuss recent topics in the news and analyze the ongoing debate of decriminalization vs. legalization. 

They first discuss the story of LSD chemist William Leonard Pickard, who was released from prison on July 27th due mostly to his age, health status and risk for contracting Covid-19, and while it's great that he's out, how it changes nothing about the conspiracy surrounding his arrest ("Halperngate") and the very questionable DEA claims of LSD availability decreasing by 95% after his imprisonment. 

They then talk about Denver mushroom grower Kole Milner, who is facing up to 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine, and all the complications surrounding state or city legality vs. federal legality, and how anyone in this space should be extremely careful about what personal information they share publicly, regardless of any perceived legal safety. 

This leads to a long discussion about decriminalization vs. legalization: the need for more conversation, what the model might look like for the US, what we can learn from Portugal, how Covid-related economic issues might influence things, the "my drug is better than your drug" issue with advertising, the problem with D.A.R.E.'s "scare you straight" model and the need for truth instead of manipulation, and how advertising and corporate profit incentives may come into play- does legality mean that companies will try to convince more people to use these powerful medicines irresponsibly?

Notable quotes

“It’s a false dichotomy to just say ‘decriminalization vs. legalization.’ As we say, decriminalization doesn’t necessarily mean anything. It can mean something for a municipality or a county or a state but it doesn’t necessarily mean that’s the case for the feds. And as soon as you’re crossing state lines, that’s when they can be really into it. But realistically, the DEA seems to have plenty of power to do whatever they want.” -Joe

“I remember a few years ago, I started making this comment: ‘Oh cool, so you want it to stay illegal so you can have your heady, farm-to-table LSD. Cute, but that’s not really how it works and there’s plenty of people getting hurt as a result of not having these controls in place.’ ...It just takes a couple high schoolers whipping up a shitty lab, or non-safety-oriented people just trying to make a quick buck to get a few people hurt. I want to be a libertarian, but I don’t necessarily trust people’s motives enough to fully be a libertarian. I feel like there needs to be incentive structures in place and regulation in place for a lot of things.” -Joe

“I remember them threatening us: ‘If you do this, we will come and arrest you.’ Like, whoa... What if you had somebody that was like, “Hey, psilocybin mushrooms- these were originally used in ceremonial contexts, they had these kinds of safety mechanisms built in place, and this is what’s going on, here are the risks and dangers, this is why you would want to do it in a situation like this, people are using it to find spiritual growth…” And I don’t know, is that more enticing to people? Like, “Oh. I’m really curious!” But at least when they would practice, hopefully, they’d be like, “Oh yea, remember, they told us to do it in this context” instead of being like “This is an illegal thing, we’re going to get arrested so let’s hide and do it in secrecy and not tell anybody about it because the police chief is going to kick down my door and arrest me and tell me I’m a bad person.” -Kyle

“Let’s just be fact-based. Like, ‘Ok, here are the laws, here’s where it comes from, here’s the history, here are the pluses and minuses, and here are the legal consequences at this point in time.’ I would just like the facts, you know? I don’t need to be manipulated. Because that’s all I felt it was- a manipulation of the truth and a manipulation of us. This is not science-based policy, and I think a lot of us now want science-based policy.” -Joe

Links

Breaking: LSD Chemist William Leonard Pickard to be Released From Prison

Lucid News: LSD Chemist And Psychedelic Icon William Leonard Pickard To Be Released From Prison

Erowid character vault on William Leonard Pickard

Erowid's article on Halperngate

LSD Use Up 56% Since 2015, According To Study by University of Cincinnati

Man Accused of Selling Mushrooms Faces Up to Twenty Years

Al Jazeera youtube stream: Are magic mushrooms going mainstream?

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Jul 31, 2020
Lauren Taus - Wellness through Yoga, Meditation and Psychotherapy
01:23:25

In today's episode, Kyle interviews Lauren Taus: yoga instructor with 20 years of experience, host of the Inbodied Life podcast, and psychotherapist specializing in ketamine-assisted psychotherapy. 

Taus talks about growing tired of more traditional therapy and cognitive loops so many people find themselves in through cognitive behavioral therapy leading to her taking a break from therapy altogether, trying psychedelics with her brother, learning of psychedelics being used therapeutically, and coming out of the psychedelic closet to her father (who now works with her).  She speaks about her practice, and the process and importance of building up therapeutic relationships first before introducing any psychedelics.  

She discusses how Covid-19, cannabis legalization and the way our culture is set up are all exacerbating mental health issues and the challenges of fighting through that while trying to better partner with disadvantaged communities, the frustrations around the illegality of certain medicines, the power of ketamine, the concept of spiritual bypassing, what she's doing differently during this disconnected time, harm reduction around psychedelics without a therapist nearby, mindfulness, and the importance of touch and dancing.

Notable Quotes

“Healing happens in relationship, and it happens in relationship with self too. I believe that so many people (and I certainly have been one of them) are walking warzones. The violence that happens inside of an individual heart and mind is far more outrageous than what you’d read in the news, and what you read in the news is a lot. ...With my work, I want to know you, I want to feel you, I want you to feel safe, I want you to feel love, I want you to feel unconditional regard and care. And that doesn’t happen overnight, and that doesn’t happen when you take a pill.”

“When I think about what’s happening with cannabis now, there’s essentially white cartels, and there’s cannabis stores on every block of Venice Beach, and people making lots and lots of money on weed. And then there’s so many black and brown people in prison for smoking a joint. And so the inequity there- what kind of reparations can we do? I like to say you can’t bypass the 'fuck you' on your way to forgiveness. And love is big enough to hold the anger and the rage, and there’s appropriate righteous anger that’s due.”

“People are struggling to be with what is- to welcome the wildlife that courses through their veins, to sit still with their fear and their sadness, and even their joy. I have so many people who try to crush their joy and celebration because they’re afraid of losing it. And they will- it’s going to shift. But can we be in the big wideness of what it is to be human? And in our inability to do so, we create all these different unique and not-so-unique misguided defense mechanisms. All these mechanisms for evasion- flight strategies. They can look like work, they can look like sex and food and drugs and alcohol and running or even meditation. The intention is what informs it a lot- what are you doing? Are you looking to go in, or are you looking to leave?”

“Do your work and remember to play along the way. Joy is an act of resistance.”

Links

Inbodiedlife.com

Instagram

Inbodied Life podcast, featuring Kyle


About Lauren Taus

Lauren Taus graduated summa cum laude from Barnard College at Columbia University in 2004 with a BA in Religion before continuing on to NYU for her Masters in Social Work. Lauren is licensed as a clinical therapist in both New York and California with a specialty in addiction and trauma treatment.
As a clinician, Lauren integrates alternative modalities of treatment into her work. She trained with David Emerson under the supervision of Bessel van der Kolk at The Trauma Institute in Boston in trauma sensitive yoga, and she’s trained by the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) for MDMA assisted psychotherapy for complex PTSD.

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Jul 28, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 17
01:03:19

In today's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and discuss two news stories emerging from Portland, Oregon- first, paramilitary-like federal agents showing up in unmarked cars and arresting protestors, and second, the beating and pepper-spraying of one of those protestors, Christopher David. 

They look at these events from multiple perspectives- what fears are driving the opinions of people who are against these protests? Why does there always seem to be money when it comes to military expenses, but never any money when it comes to the wellbeing of people? How many police officers fully stand behind what they're doing, and how many are simply following orders or deeming certain evils necessary solely to earn their federal pension? 

They analyze systems and better ways forward, like considering a bottom-up approach vs. the standard top-down approach or Ken Wilbur's framework of transcending an old system while including all the lessons from it. They also discuss decriminalization vs. legalization and the importance of regulation, and the massive scale of concepts and systems, like how MKUltra needs to be included when discussing the history of psychology.

They also discuss telehealth and ketamine-assisted psychotherapy and the complications surrounding it right now, from both therapists and clients not wanting to be in an office to the concerns of self-administration at home, to the benefits of self-exploration for those who do feel comfortable and safe engaging on their own. And lastly, they talk about their upcoming Navigating Psychedelics class, which is selling fast and will never be cheaper than it is now.

Notable quotes

“This is illegal, and people seem to forget that it’s illegal. Even if it’s decriminalized in a locality, doesn’t mean the feds can’t come in and shut you down. And that’s why they call me the party pooper.” -Joe

“How many people get into higher systems and institutions with really good intentions [of] wanting to make change, and thinking... “I’m going to change it from the top down.” ...What would a ‘bottom-up’ approach be, and how could we give power back to communities to start to create their own change, instead of thinking that we need to change it from these hierarchical systems? I always come back to Bucky Fuller’s quote about just creating a different system- you don’t change a system by trying to change it, you make a new system that’s obsolete to that old way of being. ...I’m thinking also too, from the somatic lens in therapy- approaching it more cognitively, intellectually- this whole top-down brain approach vs. a body-oriented approach and working with the trauma, working with the body and thinking about, ok, what’s the body? It’s people, it’s communities. How do we start to work that way?” -Kyle

“I just prefer to see government funds spent on stuff like the green new deal to save us from climate change. Or health care for all- those kinds of things. Why spend to put people in jail, when we could have, just like with cannabis, taxable revenue. I don’t want to let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Just because it’s not equitable, I don’t think that totally excludes the thing. I’d just like to see less people going to jail, less people being harmed by black market drugs, and more clean appropriate drugs available to the people who want them.” -Joe

“How do we have the money to send these paramilitary agents in but you didn’t have the money to produce personal protection equipment for hospitals? What’s going on here?” -Kyle

Links

U.S. Homeland Security confirms three units sent paramilitary officers to Portland

Navy veteran beaten and pepper-sprayed by federal agents at protest in Portland

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Jul 24, 2020
Dr. Malin Vedøy Uthaug - Ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT Research
01:20:14

In this episode, Kyle speaks with Imperial College London research assistant and past guest, Dr. Malin Vedøy Uthaug, who just earned her doctorate and published her dissertation on Ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT research.

Uthaug discusses how she started working in this field, why Prague is a good place for research, what past research has led to today, how certain factors could predict whether someone would have a more challenging or more mystical experience, how these experiences can treat people with PTSD differently, what dissociation actually means, the differences between vaporized 5-MeO-DMT and intramuscular 5-MeO-DMT injections and how injections typically lead towards better trauma resolution over the "too much too soon" effects of vaporization. They also talk about reactivation (re-experiencing parts of the 5-MeO-DMT experience at a later time) and why it might happen, how it is different from LSD flashbacks, and how expectations, the experience, and the facilitator all come into play. 

They discuss her research and dissertation, which consisted of 2 studies on ayahuasca and 3 on 5-MeO-DMT, focusing on if participants saw improvement in convergent thinking and mental health variables (depression, anxiety and stress), and how her placebo-controlled study revealed that those who received the placebo still saw a marked improvement. This leads to a conclusion that often, context may play a larger role than the medicine- feeling safe and being heard in a ceremonial, community-based setting may be the biggest factor towards healing. 

Notable Quotes

“Once you make the unconscious conscious, then you can learn from it, and [it’s not] so much about resisting anymore. Carl Jung says, ‘what you resist persists,’ and what I think is happening, especially with PTSD, is that you’re kind of just holding this ball underwater and it’s not allowed to float to the surface.”

“You need to feel safe, you need to experience being heard and seen. Psychedelics do help us remember things that we have repressed, but obviously, [they] also make us very vulnerable and things might come up. And having somebody witness that and validate those feelings that are expressed and shown can be incredibly healing for people.”

“What we can learn is to learn to sit with difficult emotions and to not push them aside. ...I learned that there is comfort in the discomfort. I learned that you can basically figure out so many things about yourself if you just sit with yourself for a moment and you stay in that uncomfortable silence.”

Links

The Exploration of Naturalistically used Ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT: by Malin Vedøy Uthaug (dissertation)

Imperial College London- Centre for Psychedelic Research

Her past Psychedelics Today appearance, 3/21/2018

Save a Toad, Exploit a Chemist t-shirt


About Dr. Malin Vedøy Uthaug

Malin completed her PhD at the department of Neuropsychology and Psychopharmacology, at the faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience at Maastricht University, The Netherlands. As part of her PhD, she investigated the short-term and long-term effects of Ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT in naturalistic settings, while simultaneously initiating several other studies on the psychedelic substance Mescaline and the breathing practice known as Holotropic Breathwork (HB). Malin is currently working as a Postdoctoral researcher at The Centre for Psychedelic Research, at Imperial College London, led by Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris. Here she is investigating the effects of 5-MeO-DMT on mental health related variables, brain activity and consciousness together with Dr. Christopher Timmermann. Besides being a researcher, Malin is also an editor for the ‘Journal of Psychedelics Studies’, a board member of the American podcast-show known as Psychedelics Today, and the co-founder of the Norwegian Association for Psychedelic Science (Norsk Forening for Psykedelisk Vitenskap [NFPV]) whose main aim is to educate the general public as well as researchers, and mental health practitioners in Norway about psychedelics.

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The Exploration of Naturalistically used Ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT: by Malin Vedøy Uthaug (dissertation)

 

Jul 21, 2020
Solidarity Fridays- Week 16
01:06:11

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and talk about various topics in the news and dive deep into somatic psychology. 

They first discuss Canadian mushroom life sciences company Cybin Corp's recent collaboration with drug delivery company IntelGenx to create an orally dissolvable film to administer psilocybin in controlled doses. This feels to them like the early days in the expansion of cannabis offerings, and how, for people with difficulty swallowing or pill-phobia, this may be the best option for psilocybin. 

Next, they talk about a recent study of 65 U.S. Special Operations Forces veterans who took Ibogaine on day 1 and 5-MeO-DMT on day 3 (with surrounding processing and integration time) and the amazing results, including most participants rating their psychedelic experiences as one of the top five most personally meaningful and spiritually significant experiences of their lives. Joe brings up a seldom-asked question on whether non-combat veterans should be differentiated from combat veterans in these studies and therapies. 

The last article they look at highlights a study where physicians used a new selective‐dose cannabis inhaler to administer microdoses of THC (either .5mg or 1mg) to patients with great results in decreasing pain without affecting cognitive performance. They talk about their experiences with low dose edibles and how they've seen great benefits from tiny amounts. 

They then discuss many aspects of Kyle's area of expertise (and often not mentioned in-depth on this podcast), Somatic psychology. They talk about how breathwork and a session with a physical therapist led Kyle to this practice, the concept of character armoring, William Reich's idea of neurosis being represented throughout the entire organism, how the western mind focuses on the material body, trying to fix things, and technique, how the smallest muscle quivering during a breathwork session can show where work needs to be done, and the difficulty people have in discussing the body- how it's almost a secret language only learned through experience or their therapist's suggestive questions on whether they're feeling a certain emotion or even seeing a color.

Notable quotes

“Thinking about my early years exploring psychedelics, I was so focused on the mind- the experience was outside of me, the knowledge and the wisdom was in the numinous. And that’s where I was going to find all the answers. ...It wasn’t until I had my first breathwork experience, where it was such a somatic experience- where I was feeling the experience in my body vs. externalizing my experience outside of my body and viewing it more as this thing of novelty- of something I’ve never experienced before. Actually having that experience and feeling it within myself, [I realized] I have felt this before, and it’s inside of me.” -Kyle

“[Bodywork] just reveals how much is not immediately available in the day-to-day consciousness. There’s so much happening- so much stored in our body that we just don’t even really have a handle on it. ...My favorite line (which, I’m starting to feel like I’m cheating) is: “Mind is, at the very least, diffused throughout the body.” -Joe

“As a culture, we’re so body-oriented at times, right? We think about diet, exercise, yoga has turned more into more of an exercise than a lifestyle or practice. ...We’re so focused more on the physical, material body than the emotional body, and that’s something that’s really hard to tap into.” -Kyle

“Try not to set out with some of these goals that ‘we need to change this.’ What does it feel like to just maybe feel some of these things?” -Kyle

Links

Psychedelics For Seniors: A New Sublingual Option

Psychedelic Treatment for Trauma-Related Psychological and Cognitive Impairment Among US Special Operations Forces Veterans

The pharmacokinetics, efficacy, and safety of a novel selective‐dose cannabis inhaler in patients with chronic pain: A randomized, double‐blinded, placebo‐controlled trial

 

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

 

Jul 17, 2020
Mike Crowley - Secret Drugs of Buddhism
01:15:32

In today’s episode, Joe interviews Author Mike Crowley to talk about his book, Secret Drugs of Buddhism.

 

 

Jul 14, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 15
01:05:36

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and talk about various topics in the news.

They first discuss Rise Wellness (a company focused on teaching people how to microdose psilocybin)'s recent merger with CannaGlobal and Sansero Life Sciences to become CannaGlobal Wellness, and why many smaller companies are merging, and why Canada may be a hot new destination point for these companies. Joe suggests a new idea of helping people microdose through the use of a transdermal patch. 

They talk about psychology today and the idea of no theory being complete without including all perspectives (including psychedelic perspectives), the concept of re-phrasing “what’s wrong with you?” to “what has happened to you?”, a recent student’s theory that schizophrenia may actually be a protection mechanism, Amsterdam-based psilocybin-retreat company Synthesis’ recent $2.75 million funding towards developing an end-to-end professional wellness & therapy platform, and what that means to the community- are these companies focusing on the drug as the crux, or the full therapy picture?

Lastly, they talk about the death of Elijah McClain from a 500-milligram injection of ketamine, using thoughts from past guest and regular administrator of ketamine to patients, Dr. Alex Belser. They talk about how ketamine can be necessary, but how it has unfortunately been used as a weapon for chemical restraint against people of color, which brings about larger questions on whether people should be allowed to hurt themselves or not- what role do physicians, therapists and police officers ultimately have in people’s freedom to do what they want with their bodies? 

And just as a reminder, Psychedelics Today is currently offering a course developed by Kyle and Dr. Ido Cohen called Psychedelics and The Shadow: The Shadow Side of Psychedelia. And the next round of Navigating Psychedelics for Clinicians and Therapists will be starting in September, with a new self-paced option. 

Notable Quotes

On William James: “As soon as he found out about other states of consciousness other than the normal waking state, he’s saying that no theory for how the world works is complete unless we include all perspectives. So, like, what is the American constitution when you’re on nitrous or on LSD? What is appropriate political idealogy, given all of these things? Essentially, he’s saying that we’re going to keep developing new tools to understand the universe, and every time we have one of these new tools, it kind of expands the scope of what we need in our theories for how the world works. ...Psychedelic states, shamanic states- how do we include that into our worldview to have a complete scientific framework? I think it’s just a never-ending process, and a fun one.” -Joe

“Even the people that I’ve worked with [who] are really really struggling, and I’ve seen medication work really well for them at times, I always come back to: ‘what has this person been through? Do they actually have this thing that science and probably psychiatry would label as a disease?’ ...Some of the trauma stuff that’s coming out, the neuroscience, some of the somatics- it’s all kind of merging. And with the help of psychedelics, I’m feeling more optimistic that maybe the field will go into more of a growth, healing-oriented route vs. this pathology [of] ‘sick.’” -Kyle

“With these clinics that are popping up- are you exclusively focusing on the psychedelic experience, or are you trying to focus on the therapeutic relationship, the rapport, the container, the trust that’s developed over time, and really developing that relationship with the client? There’s tons of research that suggests that a therapeutic relationship is the one factor in getting better in therapy. So, as money is coming into this space and more of these clinics are popping up, are you creating a center around therapy, and really thinking about how to bring wellness and work with people in this space, or are just focusing it exclusively on the substance, thinking that’s the change?” -Kyle

Links

CannaGlobal, Sansero Life Sciences and Rise Wellness Merge

Synthesis Raises US$2.75M to Develop End-to-End Professional Platform for Psychedelic Wellness & Therapy

Alex Belser's thoughts on ketamine as a chemical restraint

Is Ketamine the new police weapon against black lives?

Psychedelics and The Shadow: The Shadow Side of Psychedelia

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Jul 10, 2020
Jesse Gould and Keith Abraham - Heroic Hearts Project: Connecting Veterans to Psychedelic Treatment
48:56

In today's episode, Joe interviews Jesse Gould, founder and president of the Heroic Hearts Project, a nonprofit organization that connects military veterans to ayahuasca retreats, and Keith Abraham, head of the newly created Heroic Hearts UK branch.

They discuss the similarities of their military pasts and post-combat struggles, and how they both took part in ayahuasca ceremonies at Peru's La Medicina, where they eventually met. They note the need to create the UK branch came from the realization that UK vets simply weren't getting as much attention as those in the US.

They talk about the unlikely allyship of Crispin Blunt, member of Parliament and co-chair of the All Party Parliamentory Group for Drug Policy Reform, the consideration of using psilocybin in future work as a less intense ayahuasca alternative, current microbiome studies and the excitement around new data vs. the "death by survey" complications when working with people in need, and how helpful a military mindset can be in these situations.

They share some success stories but talk about how far we need to go in helping veterans come back to society, and how much we'd benefit from a more ceremonial acceptance of the passage from one way of life to another. The corporate 9-5 world can be tough for anyone, but ultimately, finding a purpose and connecting to a community is what's most important toward these veterans reintegrating back to their "pre-army" lives.

Notable Quotes

“Ayahuasca changed everything. I came out of that jungle a very different person. I wouldn’t say that I had a 400% healing experience, but I had that massive, massive, massive catalyst where I knew that my life had to change. And it has. And from there, in the year since, when I got myself together, I started realizing, ‘you know what? I’m in a good place. How can I introduce UK veterans to the experience that I’ve had, because I see that as vitally important?’ And then I was introduced to Jesse, and it turned out that the organization that I thought I wanted to create had already been created perfectly.” -Keith Abraham

“My sons actually in the same unit as I was (in the parachute regiment.) When I left the parachute regiment and went for my ayahuasca experience in Peru, I then came back, and my son was looking at me like, “wait, you’re a grizzly old war veteran, and now you’re talking about, like ‘everything is connected, and love and peace and harmony’ um... this is… strange.’’ He’s gotten really used to it now, but yea, it’s wonderful that these plant medicines can do these things for us. [We have] such strong minds and characters, and this ingrained training as well, but it can be overwhelmed in a good way.” -Keith Abraham

“One of the things we teach through Heroic Hearts, especially in the integration process, is: it’s fine to maintain your warrior- that warrior spirit, that warrior soul. But now you need to learn to use that energy and use that strength towards other means. You might be done with the fighting for now, but that doesn’t mean you’re set out to pasture and done with society. There’s a lot of different ways you can use that energy. ...How can you continue to be a warrior, just on a different trajectory?” -Jesse Gould

Links

Heroic Hearts Project Website

Heroic Hearts Project UK Website

Heroic Hearts Facebook group

Heroic Hearts Twitter

Heroic Hearts Instagram

La Medicina

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About Jesse Gould

Jesse Gould is Founder and President of the Heroic Hearts Project, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit pioneering psychedelic therapies for military veterans. After being deployed in Afghanistan three times, he founded the Heroic Hearts Project in 2017 to spearhead the acceptance and use of ayahuasca therapy as a means of addressing the current mental health crisis among veterans. The Heroic Hearts Project has raised over $150,000 in scholarships from donors including Dr. Bronner’s and partnered with the world’s leading ayahuasca treatment centers, as well as sponsoring psychiatric applications with the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of Georgia. Jesse helps shape treatment programs and spreads awareness of plant medicine as a therapeutic method. He has spoken globally about psychedelics and mental health, and received accolades including being recognized as one of the Social Entrepreneurs To Watch For In 2020 by Cause Artist. Driven by a mission to help military veterans struggling with mental trauma, he is best known for his own inspiring battle with PTSD and his recovery through ayahuasca therapy. Jesse’s work can be seen and heard at NY Times, Breaking Convention, San Francisco Psychedelic Liberty Summit, People of Purchase, The Freq, Psychedelics Today Podcast, Kyle Kingsbury Podcast, Cause Artist, WAMU 88.5 and The GrowthOp.

About Keith Abraham

Keith Abraham served 9 years as a member of The Parachute Regiment, fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Throughout the latter years of his military service and during this time working for an investment bank, Keith began experiencing severe symptoms of anxiety and depression. After exhausting the majority of services and options offered by the NHS and military charities without much success, Keith realized a new approach was needed. His profound experiences with ayahuasca and psilocybin convinced him of the vital role plant medicines have to offer those suffering from PTSD, brain injuries and mental ill-health.

 

Jul 07, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 14
01:22:35

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and talk about various topics in the news.

They first discuss the duality of how Covid-19 affects different people, and how much of a privilege it is to be able to reconnect with family in new ways and use this time to grow spiritually while so many are out of work and struggling to get by. 

They discuss a recent tweet from @Shroomstreet concerning psychedelic stocks and the money being invested in this emerging market, and concerns that some of these unknown companies could be fake or following the “exit scam” model of holding onto investor money and then closing up shop. How many of these companies are in it for the right reasons, and what does this all mean on a grand scale?

They talk about recent reports of psychedelic retreats in excess of $10,000 and the various aspects surrounding these prices, from the cost of education and the need for physicians and therapists to make a living while helping others, to the idea of “pay what you can” and taking a hit financially if it means helping the local community or those really in need without the finances to be able to participate in these retreats. Is pastoral counseling or group therapy the best way to help the most people? 

And lastly, they talk about Oregon’s progress in getting legal psilocybin therapy on the ballot in November and the benefits of legality, most importantly towards the ability to report abusive sitters under a framework that would completely remove them from this field.

Notable quotes

“The Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm is just so focused on the how- on the mechanics of ‘how does a psychedelic work? Oh, ok, it can treat this. How does it treat this?’ vs. thinking about the idea of final cause and thinking about the why- why do these things exist? What is its purpose, and what is the potential implication here, on a bigger level, than just thinking about this how and thinking ‘this thing does this thing and that’s all we’re really worried about,’ not thinking about that overarching why- like, what is the purpose here?” -Kyle

“I think everybody really should be able to access healing eventually. I think people shouldn’t be starving to death either, but people are still starving to death. I remember Kwasi (Adusei, in Solidarity Fridays week 10) at one point was like, ‘should we bring psychedelics to minority communities for healing?’ Well, why not bring regular mental health services first? Let’s start with clean water, as opposed to ‘let’s give them a road that they didn’t want.’ What’s the cheapest, lowest-hanging fruit that’s going to give the best reward?” -Joe

“Education programs probably would be really helpful. And I think that’s how we fit in. It’s a philosophy thing that could be helpful for both recreationalists and people providing therapeutic experiences, and the experiencers themselves too. It helps to have some education before you go to see God.” -Joe

“I think states should be experimenting with different ways of going forward. Yes, I want everything to be decriminalized- I want everything to be legal, really- personally. I don’t think therapeutic use should be the only use-case. But it’s certainly a lot better than what we’ve got now.” -Joe

Links

Shroomstreet's tweet: Why do you think Psychedelic stocks continue to bleed?

Regulated psychedelic mushrooms are one step closer to being on the ballet in Oregon in November

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Jul 03, 2020
Peter Hendricks Ph.D. - Psilocybin for Cocaine Use
01:18:49

In this episode, Joe speaks with Peter Hendricks, Ph.D. and Associate Professor at the University of Alabama, currently involved in researching the effects of psilocybin on people dealing with cocaine-related substance use disorder. 

He discusses the details of the pilot trial (following the Johns Hopkins model, with music created by Bill Richards), some early findings and speculations, what music might work best for these sessions, how excited he is to bring these findings to the criminal justice system, and how religion and tribalism come into play when looking at what people get out of these psychedelic experiences.

Hendricks points out that while psilocybin is currently being researched as a treatment for tobacco use (by Matthew Johnson at Johns Hopkins) and alcohol use (by Michael Bogenschutz at NYU), this is the first large study with cocaine and could lead to the first medication for major stimulants. And while there have been many studies on psilocybin in general, they’ve rarely been focused on the people he’s working with, who are often poorer, less educated, often out of work, and usually struggling more than those typically involved in these studies. They also talk about what research of the past has given us data-wise, and how inspirational it has been to the work being done today. 

Notable Quotes

“The participants in our trial- they haven’t read Michael Pollan’s book or others. They’re not in the know. I’ll have to explain to them what the drug is, and the common reaction is, ‘uhh, so you’re going to help me stop getting high by getting me high?’ and I’ll try to explain how the drug might differ from others, from more addictive drugs like cocaine. And as we know, it’s an ineffable experience- it’s a difficult experience to put to words…. I’m honored and I have admiration for our participants because they have the courage to dive into this study conducted at a University by people they’ve never met. It can be a very frightening experience and they say, ‘you know what, I’ve tried everything. At this point, I’m desperate, let’s give it a try.’ I probably couldn’t overstate how much courage it takes for them to do what they do. I don’t know that I could do it myself.” 

“I think for most of the world’s fates, the tenants are that we’re all in this together, and we’re bound by love. And that really might be the message that most people get from psychedelics, but similar to religion, sometimes that message is perverted a bit and what you take from it is, ‘my in-group is what’s most important and I’m going to act to preserve my own tribe, even if it means treating others in an awful, inhumane way…’ Sometimes experiences that are really meant to foster a connection with everybody can go haywire and we have to be aware of that”

“One criticism of some of the studies conducted so far has been, how do we know that psilocybin might have these effects on a sample that isn’t all college-educated or doctorates or who are Professors at Universities who make more than 100,000 dollars per year and live comfortably? How do we know that this experience would have any meaning to somebody who’s making less than 10,000 per year, who has a fifth-grade education, who’s unemployed and homeless? I think in large part, this study might answer that question. If we find an effect, then we can say it appears to also have an effect among those who look different and whose life circumstances are much different than some of the earlier participants.”

Links

Twitter

Heffter Research Institute

 

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Navigating Psychedelics

 


About Peter Hendricks PhD

Dr. Hendricks received his doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of South Florida and completed a post-doctoral Fellowship in Drug Abuse Treatment and Services Research at the University of California, San Francisco. His research centers on the development of novel and potentially more effective treatments for substance dependence, with specific areas of focus on tobacco, cocaine, and polysubstance dependence in vulnerable populations.

 

Jun 30, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 13
01:14:19

In today’s Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down to talk about topics in the news including Mindmed’s phase one research into DMT, the intricacies of intravenous or infusion-pump administration, the potential clinical application of DMT, and whether or not mainstream science is ready to handle some transpersonal phenomena like entity encounters that sometimes occur during DMT experiences. They also discuss the projections for the psychedelic drug market and the intentions of the companies entering this space, and a recent tweet from the Drug Policy Alliance discussing how the war on drugs is a tool of racial oppression. 

They dive deep into the war on drugs and racial oppression by discussing how sentencing for crack-cocaine is much harsher than cocaine (while basically the same drug), how NYC’s “stop-and-frisk” program was essentially put in place to put people in jail for cannabis possession, and how Breonna Taylor never would have died if police weren’t looking for drugs. They discuss the tragedy of Elijah McClain and what purpose a lot of police activity really serves, while looking at the “protect ourselves first” fraternity mentality that a lot of these power organizations have and how difficult it can be for a good person to become a whistleblower in those situations. 

They also talk about revisiting philosophy through Lenny Gibson and how beneficial it has been to explore that world as more mature people and see connections to psychology, as well as learning the limitations of scientific explanations when dealing with deep, transpersonal experiences.

Lastly, they mention their excitement in participating in the re-scheduled Philosophy of Psychedelics conference coming up next year in England.

Notable quotes

“I stopped doing research on near-death experiences at some point, where I was just like, ‘I’m sick of reading about [how] these are just physiological reflexes and responses within the brain, maybe the lack of oxygen, or all the different neurochemistry that’s going on within the brain at the time of dying…’ There’s something so interesting about that experience, that no matter how much mechanistic information I have, there’s still something there that eats at me… kind of like this lore… the lore of beauty and life kind of unfolding. It’s oriented towards growth and beauty, and I guess that’s what some of these experiences have really taught me- and it is that lore to grow, evolve, and move towards something. And I think when I try to put some sort of biological explanation to it, it almost halts that and says ‘that experience doesn’t really mean that much.’” -Kyle

“Science has limited capacity to help people with meaning-making.” -Joe

“Do we have enough spiritual literacy? Do we have an inclusive enough cosmology to handle all of these cases? ...Are psychologists willing to call in an exorcist of some kind? Or some sort of priest [who] can handle this kind of thing? …I tend to think shareholders might be a little creeped out if publicly traded companies are talking about spirits and entities. Are we ready for that?” -Joe

“What does it mean that you have to put somebody in prison for 10 years for a non-violent offense, as a cop? Like, you pulled someone over, you found some drugs in their car, and now they go to prison. And their life is essentially ruined. And you made the decision to become a police officer and uphold laws. Like, can you sit with that and be ok with that, as an individual? Why do you think drugs are so bad that locking another person up in a cage for years and years and years is ok? …[They say], ’because they have meth or fentanyl, they are the most dangerous people out there!’ What about the rapists and murderers? What about drunk drivers that could kill 20 kids in one night? Why are you spending time on drug offenses when there are rapists out there? There are tons of untested rape kids at all these police departments across the country.”- Joe

Links

NeonMind Files Patent Application for Therapeutic Use of DMT

Philosophy of Psychedelics conference

MindMed investigating potential benefits of DMT in upcoming Phase 1 clinical trial collaboration

Psychedelic Drugs Market Projected to Reach $6.85 Billion by 2027

Drug Policy Alliance's tweet about the drug war

Aide says Nixon's war on drugs targeted blacks, hippies

Jon Krakauer's "Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town"

2 Million People Want Justice For Elijah McClain And His Story Is Gut-Wrenching

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

Jun 26, 2020
Byron Metcalf - Making Music For Transpersonal Breathwork Experiences
01:21:16

In this episode, Joe speaks with award-winning musician, producer, transpersonal guide, shamanic practitioner, and certified graduate of Grof Transpersonal Training, Byron Metcalf. 

They discuss Metcalf’s path from being a Nashville-based studio musician (who played on Kenny Rogers’ “The Gambler”) to a “midlife correction” of taking a class with Stan Grof and Jacquelyn Small leading to him discovering holotropic breathwork: a whole new world he had never seen before that perfectly suited his musical mind. 

They discuss how Metcalf works with music- from recording and producing to making mixes for sessions, how different types of music work better for different types of sessions, and how important it is to think about the flow of a mix and the transitions and mixing between songs in how it relates to the journey of the people listening- when does up-tempo music work best in comparison to more heart-centered, emotional music? When is more shamanic, percussion-based music more appropriate?

He also talks about the effect of people’s projections in these sessions and a funny story of when he thought he heard Christmas music during a session, using Spotify for session music, streaming vs. downloading, 320kbps vs. 24-bit recordings, creating music sober vs. under the influence, the effectiveness of binaural beats, and co-creating retreats with clients to fit their custom personal and musical needs.  

Notable Quotes

“It just… changed my life. I mean, literally, just like, ‘what is this? How is this even possible to just do some deep breathing and listen to this incredible music?’ ...What it reminded me of was a psychedelic experience. And so I immediately saw the potential in it… And of course… how that model uses music was kind of just a perfect fit for me.”

“You’re doing your own work. The best healers or the best facilitators, therapists, whatever- are the ones who really have done their own work, and in fact, I don’t trust anyone [who] hasn’t.”

“I was really fortunate that Stan would enlist me to do music sometimes at these bigger events- the Insight and Opening where Stan and Jack Kornfield would combine the holotropic breathwork with Vipassana meditation for a week. And it was groups of 200, and so you got 100 people breathing at one time and it’s [a] pretty fantastic energy field as you could imagine. And just seeing- observing what happens for people and to people and through people, still- when I think about it and start describing some of the things that I’ve witnessed and observed and experienced, it almost sounds like [I’m] making this stuff up… It’s like trying to explain a psychedelic experience to someone that’s never had it before… There’s no way you can really convey that. So it has to be experienced.” 

“There’s something higher, bigger- that’s at work here that we want to make contact with and surrender to. So that’s the goal. And sometimes if people are projecting on the music, not liking the music- sometimes changing it would be good. Other times, not. Because maybe it is bringing up a great piece for them. And [they say] “I don’t like this! I don’t like this!” Of course that’s projecting onto the music. What’s going on underneath that?”

Links

http://byronmetcalf.com/

http://holoshamanicstrategies.org/

http://byronmetcalf.bandcamp.com/


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Navigating Psychedelics


 

Jun 23, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 12
01:09:45

In today's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and talk about topics in the news including what psychedelic companies owe to the community (both indigenous people and the underground psychedelic world), psilocybin-like drug alternatives for treating depression and the many reasons newer companies are trying to remove the psychedelic part of the medicine, and Dennis McKenna’s recent appointing to New Wave Holdings’ psychedelic research advisory board and what that says about the current climate of corporations moving into this space.

They discuss the dangers of “sponsored content”-like corporate messages, the malleability of laws and power of lobbyists and interest groups, and how manipulation is faster and quieter than ever before, while many big decisions are being made by people crippled from decades of unseen cultural baggage. And why are companies trying to remove the psychedelic side of medicine? Is it solely for profit, or could it be because there are so many in need that streamlining the process or using these medicines differently than we’re used to in this space would be beneficial to the most people?

Lastly, they talk about the importance of making the right connections and having the right arguments and really asking yourself what you’re trying to do when engaging with those who disagree with you- are you just trying to be right, or are you trying to make a change?

Additionally, Joe shares an important harm reduction story and tip, and gives the news that Psychedelics Today recently surpassed 1 million downloads. Thank you for the support!

Quotes

“Is the only box you can fit in, like ‘I want a career, a home and a family’? And everything else doesn’t matter? Is that it? I think it’s more complicated than that. We’re not just atomic units, like nuclear families. We’re far more interconnected than that, and it’s kind of irresponsible to ignore that.” -Joe

“Big businesses end up creating these systems that we all seem to rely on over time and to some extent, I think we appreciate the convenience. If that crumbled, what would our life look like? Could we tolerate living more locally, doing things on a much smaller scale? ...What would that look like in a world where the government didn’t give huge bailouts to these big companies? Our world would drastically change, and could we shift?” -Kyle

“Maybe a thing to just keep in the back of our minds when we’re hearing all this stuff about new pharma companies is that pharma is not guaranteed money for these people. Pharma is still a gamble. Unless they really nail it, they could go bankrupt in a couple years, or just have earnings way lower than they hoped for. So it’s big money, it’s big bets, and they’re betting on big returns, so they kind of have to go out on a limb and stay stuff like this. But the fact that Forbes put that out- that psilocybin could be toxic- seems irresponsible to me… To me, this kind of looks like sponsored content. Or it’s just like, ‘how do we get these corporations to talk to us and be comfortable, so we have to promise fluff.’ Or, is this organized propaganda?” -Joe

“Some of the people in this space are just getting so nasty that a lot of people are just saying, ‘nah, I’m out, later. I’ll go watch Seinfeld reruns for the next couple years while this shit plays out.’ Are you moving allies away, or are you bringing allies closer to you? Think about that. You want more allies. What’s the best tool? Sweetness. Anger, bitterness, spite- those are things that make people want to go away from you. How effective do you want to be, why do you want to be effective, and what tools are you willing to employ to be effective?” -Joe 

Links

What Do Psychedelic Medicine Companies Owe to the Community?

2nd Gen Psychedelic Drugs For Depression Can Be Safer For Older Adults

New Wave Holdings Corp Appoints Dr. Dennis McKenna to Psychedelic Research Advisory Board

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Navigating Psychedelics

 

 

Jun 19, 2020
Tyler Chandler, Nick Meyers and Adrianne - Dosed Movie: Psychedelics and Mental Health
01:04:38

In this episode, Joe Interviews Dosed filmmakers Tyler Chandler and Nick Meyers, as well as the subject of their documentary, Adrianne. 

Show Notes

Nick and Tyler tell the story of how they went from really knowing very little about the psychedelic healing movement to becoming advocates solely from a panicked call from Adrianne.

Adrianne speaks of her journey from opiate addiction and severe depression to trying mushrooms and eventually learning she needed Iboga and a community around her to really fight her way out of a life she no longer wanted to live.

They touch on the costs of Iboga compared to other rehabilitation methods, the often glazed-over dangers of Iboga, the effectiveness of psilocybin against opioid withdrawal, anxiety in the western world, holotropic breathwork as a safer method towards healing, the power of the Pixar movie, Inside Out, and why it would be beneficial for young viewers to watch Dosed.

Resources

www.dosedmovie.com

Notable Quotes

“I have gotten sober and detoxed many, many, many times and not stayed sober, so obviously while the physical withdrawals are completely excruciating and definitely a big barrier to getting sober, there’s really something more to recovery than that, and that’s that kind of spiritual experience or awakening. And the psychedelic component is really important to that and I feel like that’s what’s contributed to me... not only getting sober but staying sober.” -Adrianne

“The real problem is that… people are forced to make these decisions and take these risks because something that has been known for 40 years to have this wonderful effect on opioid addicts is somehow something that nobody knows about and isn’t legalized.” -Nick Meyers

“No matter how you choose to recover or what you do to get sober and stay sober, having a community around you and staying connected with people is so, so important.” -Adrianne

“I definitely had a lot of discomfort just learning to… be still or be with myself and not have an escape. That’s part of recovery and it’s very uncomfortable. It takes time to get used to that. I was always used to having some kind of coping mechanism that took me out of myself, that just helped me not feel uncomfortable or whatever negative feeling I was feeling. So that’s always a challenge and there’s no shortcuts to that- you do have to just learn to be in your body and feel feelings, which I did not like very much. But, you know, it gets easier over time.” -Adrianne

“Everybody is so scared of just saying... ‘this is something that teens should do’ because nobody wants to have anything bad happen and then have it get traced back to them. But look at the realities of what teens are going through with... the rampant alcohol and other drugs, and… vaping and smoking and all the other vices- prescription medications, everything that’s available. And there’s like, no guidance, no supervision a lot of the time… What we’re doing right now isn’t working. Can I dare say it? It would be better if there were rites of passage with psychedelics in controlled settings with proper set, setting and dose with young people, because it really helps you recontextualize and reframe things in your mind.” -Nick Meyers


About Dosed

After many years of prescription medications failed her, a suicidal woman turns to underground healers to try and overcome her depression, anxiety, and opioid addiction with illegal psychedelic medicine such as magic mushrooms and iboga. Adrianne’s first dose of psilocybin mushrooms catapulted her into an unexpected world of healing where plant medicines are redefining our understanding of mental health and addiction.

 

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Jun 16, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 11
01:14:15

In today's Solidarity Fridays episode, Joe and Kyle sit down and discuss topics in the media including the usefulness of brain activity scans and the idea that “brain does not equal mind,” how language can shift the social narrative to or away from stigma when describing substance use, and psilocybin testing in mice and when we might see psilocybin start being prescribed.

They spend a lot of time on the questions everyone is asking right now- what changes can we make that will help the most people and give the oppressed what they need? What tangible changes do the oppressed actually want? What should the role of police look like, either compared to or in conjunction with social work or therapy?

They look at these questions with hope, but through a realistic lens- disasters, illness and even global warming always affects the poor and oppressed more than those in power. And historically, people have always shown a natural tendency to want to hold others down. What is the real purpose behind what those in power do (for example, outlawing encrypted texting or arresting someone for doing drugs)? Are they trying to encourage only specific conversations they’re comfortable with? 

Quotes

So what really can we do, and what specifically can those with white privilege do? The answer there is to find where your voice is most effective, and to have those tough conversations. “Find those inarguable points. Don’t let the media steer your narrative. Major media outlets want you to talk about certain things. Don’t do that. Find out what you think is most important and most helpful to discuss with the people you’re around. Where do you have the most influence?” -Joe 

“How can we... shift the narrative there to help people heal instead of… putting them in this lifelong box of ‘you’ll never heal from this because you have this disorder and this disease’? I’m always on the side of healing [rather] than trying to completely pathologize experiences.” -Kyle

“It sounds nice to say that we want to eliminate violence, we want to eliminate racism, we want to eliminate rape- all these really bad things. But how long have those things been with us? At least 14,000 years, I think. What’s it going to really take to totally reprogram the human genome- the human mind- to transition to this ideal? Is it possible? I don’t know... I want to see these police held accountable, I want to see… criminals in the government go to jail. But it’s kind of the nature of these institutions. They have this monopoly on violence that was granted to them a long time ago, and there’s no real recourse. They’ve got way bigger budgets than any of us as individuals or gangs have, much more training, much better gear… I don’t totally see a great path out.” -Joe

Links

Studies of Brain Activity Aren't as Useful as Scientists Thought

Language Matters in the Recovery Movement

Interview: Adam Halberstadt, UC San Diego

Protests Drive DC Psychedelics Decriminalization Signatures As Activists Launch Major Mailer Campaign

Support the show

Navigating Psychedelics

 

 

Jun 12, 2020
Mark Plotkin - Bio-Cultural Conservation of the Amazon
01:01:23

In this episode, Joe speaks with Mark Plotkin, Ph.D., author of The Amazon: What Everyone Needs to Know, and President and co-founder of the Amazon Conservation Team (ACT).

Plotkin talks about studying under Richard Evans Schultes (“the father of ethnobotany”), biocultural conservation (the main point of the ACT), Covid-19 and the possibilities for cures in the Amazon, how ayahuasca news can always be viewed as both good and bad, how indigenous people often know much more about their environment and plant medicines than we realize, and how not all ayahuasca is created equal.

They mostly talk about the purpose of the ACT- using ethnographic mapping to help indigenous people take control of and protect their own land from their government and mining or logging interests, all while trying to bring a focus on respecting and protecting the environment, culture, and traditions encompassing the Amazon and its many people.

“The race is on. Protect the forests, protect the shamans, protect the frogs, protect the plants, protect the fungi, and let’s learn what these people know before that knowledge disappears because the knowledge is disappearing much faster than the forest itself.”

Resources:

Notable Quotes:

On the ACT: “When we set up the Amazon Conservation team about 25 years ago, the idea was that you had groups like the World Wildlife Fund (where I had been working) that was focused on protecting rainforests, and you had groups like Cultural Survival that was focused on protecting indigenous culture, but they really didn’t talk to each other. And so we wanted to help create a discipline now known as Biocultural Conservation because those of us who work with indigenous cultures (whether it’s in the far north of Canada or it’s in the Amazon) know that there is an inextricable link between traditional shamanic cultures and their environment. And nobody was addressing that.”

“There’s a great saying… that the rainforest holds answers to questions we haven’t even asked. So who knows if the answer to Covid-19 or SARs or the next virus which is coming at some point is in the Amazon, and the answer is- nobody knows, and nobody’s really looking for it. So why not protect this treasure, steward it better, look for these answers, and keep the earth a rich and wonderful place?”

“The medical office of the future, if we get it right, is going to have a physician... a nutritionist... a pet therapist... a music therapist... a dietitian... a shaman... a massage therapist. Because there’s no one person and one way that’s going to embody all aspects of healing at the same time.”

“We all go to the grocery [store and ask]: ‘I want to buy organic stuff.’ How come nobody ever asks where the ayahuasca comes from? Is it harvested sustainably? Was it grown organically? You know how many times I’ve been asked that question? Never. If we’re having raised consciousness, why the hell aren’t we asking these questions?
So my challenge to all of our like-minded colleagues is: Let’s make sure we’re getting this from a sustainable source. Let’s make sure it’s being replanted when it’s harvested. Let’s make sure it’s benefiting tribal communities or peasant communities that are respectful of nature and shamanic processes and things like that because I don’t understand why anybody would go to the grocery store and want to get organic grapes but will buy ayahuasca off the internet without knowing where it came from.”

“The shamans often say everything is connected, which sounds sort of trite- this “butterfly effect.” But here’s proof of that. This whole terrible pandemic is due to our lack of respect for nature.”

“It’s not nice to screw mother nature either, because, you know, mother nature always wins. And thinking that we can get away with this and make a few bucks or eat a few weird dishes and not pay the ultimate price is foolish… It’s us [who are] following our nests... abusing indigenous cultures... abusing forests… and mother nature is ultimately going to have her revenge.”


About Mark J. Plotkin, Ph.D.

Dr. Mark Plotkin is a renowned ethnobotanist who has studied traditional indigenous plant use with elder shamans (traditional healers) of Central and South America for much of the past 30 years. As an ethnobotanist—a scientist who studies how, and why, societies have come to use plants for different purposes—Dr. Plotkin carried out the majority of his research with the Trio Indians of southern Suriname, a small rainforest country in northeastern South America, but has also worked with elder shamans from Mexico to Brazil. Dr. Plotkin has a long history of work with other organizations to promote conservation and awareness of our natural world, having served as Research Associate in Ethnobotanical Conservation at the Botanical Museum of Harvard University; Director of Plant Conservation at the World Wildlife Fund; Vice President of Conservation International; and Research Associate at the Department of Botany of the Smithsonian Institution. Dr. Plotkin is now President and Board member of the Amazon Conservation Team (ACT), a nonprofit organization he co-founded with his fellow conservationist and wife, Liliana Madrigal in 1996, now enjoying over 20 years of successes dedicated to protecting the biological and cultural diversity of the Amazon. ACT has been a member of the United Nations Environment Programme Global 500 Roll of Honour since 2002, and was recognized as using “Best Practices Using Indigenous Knowledge” by UNESCO, the United Nation’s cultural organization.

 

Jun 09, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 10 with Kwasi Adusei
56:23

In today’s Solidarity Fridays Episode, Kyle and Joe interview Kwasi Adusei, Nurse Practitioner, and board member of Psychedelics Today. In the show, they talk about the root of protesting, privilege, the country’s leadership, the importance of this conversation and ways to support the Black Lives Matter movement.

Show Notes

About Kwasi

  • It's difficult for all groups of people to talk about, not everybody is coming from the same place on this topic
    • Kwasi says it's wonderful to see so many people rising up to fight against injustice
  • These things have been happening for a long time, and it speaks to the history in America
  • Kwasi grew up in The Bronx, and it wasn't uncommon to hear about deaths, gun violence, etc
  • Kwasi went to receive his Doctorate, but reflects on his time in middle school and barely graduating
    • It wasn't because of him and his willingness to learn, it was because of his environment
    • The high school he went to is now shut down because of the low graduation rates

The Perfect Storm

  • Kyle says he wonders why this time in particular, why this is impacting the nation and the world more than anything else going on
    • Kwasi sees it as a two part thing, it's a snowball effect, the anger around these instances continue to grow
    • The other part of it, has a lot to do with the Coronavirus, people are losing their jobs, having trouble paying rent, feeding their family, etc
      • They are losing their outlets to grieve, and they go through it for weeks
      • Then something like this happens and it results in rage 

Making the Right Statement

  • It's important to look to the family of George Floyd, they are angry at the violence coming out of the protests
  • Some people believe that the anger that people are showing when damaging property, is causing the same anger when lives are lost
    • But some people are capitalizing on chaos, burning buildings and bringing destruction, and it takes away from the message of changing the systemic issues, it perpetuates it
    • It brings the spotlight to those who are inviting hate by graffiti-ing, lighting buildings on fire, ec
    • The conversation needs to prove that protests are making a statement 

Poor Leadership

  • We have a President that is enforcing law and order to remove peaceful protesters in a violent way
    • The leadership we have is very important, how crisis is approached is really important
    • “How [as a leader] do you calm the nerves of people, while getting to the root of the problem?” - Kwasi
    • We have a lot of people that support Drumpf, and he doesn't do the best job at leading and supporting the country in a respectful way, especially in these times
  • Joe mentioned videos out there of undercover cops breaking windows that are ‘bait’ to bring in stronger forces to shut down the protests
  • “We should all be asking ourselves, if I care about the messaging, how do I use my sphere of influence to change things?” - Kwasi
  • There are so many roots to this problem
    • How much are we using to fund the police force versus funding education, community services, public health? 

How to Support 

  • Joe says this platform (Psychedelics Today) is to create a space for people to give back, have an impact, share stories and support movements like this
  • Kwasi says to look locally to give your time, money and support
    • He says look to get involved in local elections, making a small difference in your local community, makes a difference on the larger scale when multiplied
  • Stay informed for yourself and share that information with everyone else
  • People are thinking heavily right now “where are my tax dollars being spent?”
    • Instead of extra funding to the local police force, you can vote for that increase to go toward something else like education 

Having the Conversation

  • Our voice is our vote
  • Many people who listen to the Psychedelics Today podcast are probably privileged
  • The psychedelic movement is (and if not, should be) connected to so many other movements like BLM
    • Psychedelics Today is mainly about social justice, changing the narrative on drug policy, the drug war, psychedelic exceptionalism and access
  • Kwasi says that for those who have acknowledged their privilege, not to just keep themselves in the pillar of ‘because I support the psychedelic movement and its connected to the BLM movement, I've done enough’
    • He encourages becoming an ally of the BLM movement, as well as any other movement

Privilege

  • Being a spiritual and privileged person, you have even more time to sit and process and think about all of this, especially when it's not affecting you
  • It’s difficult to analyze one’s own privilege
    • Kwasi says he went on a medical mission to Ghana, where he was born
    • Going back and seeing what the lifestyle was like there, it shifted a lot in him to understand his own privilege
    • He had the privilege of coming to America, receiving an education, etc
    • Because of his education, he is asking himself how to give back

Making Change through Action

  • If you're going to voice your support, that voice needs follow up with actions
    • Actions like donating to groups, educating yourself on local authority measures, voting, etc
  • Sometimes an organization's agenda isn't always aligned with what the people want
  • Kwasi says that he had a few people randomly venmo him money and it offended him
    • He doesn't want money, he wants change to be made in other ways
    • He says for those looking to help, ask first and see what ways those who have been oppressed want to see the change and be supported
  • “We can all be change makers, and all make a change in this world” - Kwasi

Final Thoughts

  • Kwasi wants to bring mental health into communities of people of color
  • He says email him at kwasiadusei@buffalo.edu

Resources to Support

Reading list

Viewing list

  • 13th: An in-depth look at the prison system in the United States and how it reveals the nation's history of racial inequality.
  • I Am Not Your Negro: Explores the history of racism in the United States through Baldwin’s reminiscences of civil rights leaders Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King Jr., as well as his personal observations of American history.

Ways to take action; Donate to victim funds

  • Official George Floyd Memorial Fund: These funds will also go towards the funeral and burial costs along with the counseling and legal expenses for his loved ones. A portion will go towards the Estate of George Floyd for the benefit and care of his children and their educational fund.

Ways to take action; Donate to organizations

  • The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund: the NAACP Legal Defense works on advancing the goals of racial justice and equality by protecting those that are most vulnerable in society. Their work includes court cases that work for a fairer justice system, increasing graduation rates among African American students, protecting voters across the nation, and decreasing disproportionate incarceration and sentencing rates.
  • Communities United Against Police Brutality: The Minneapolis organization was created “to deal with police brutality on an ongoing basis.” More information can be found here.
  • Campaign Zero: The organization uses data to inform policy solutions that aim to ends police brutality. Their vision is to create a better world by “limiting police interventions, improving community interactions, and ensuring accountability.”

About Kwasi Adusei

Kwasi dedicates his work in the psychedelic movement to altering the stigma in mainstream channels by promoting the science, the healing potential of psychedelics, and civic engagement. Kwasi is a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner and graduated from the University at Buffalo. He is the founder of the Psychedelic Society of Western New York and project manager for Psychonauts of the World, an initiative to share meaningful psychedelic stories, with the ultimate goal of publishing them in a book as an avenue to raise money for psychedelic research. He is also one of the administrators for the Global Psychedelic Network, a conglomerate of psychedelic groups and individuals from around the world. Born in Ghana and raised in the Bronx, New York, Kwasi hopes to bring psychedelic therapy to communities of color.

 

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Navigating Psychedelics


Jun 05, 2020
Jacob Curtis - Psychedelic Photojournalism in Denver
01:11:54

In this episode, Joe speaks with Jacob Curtis a photojournalist at Denver7, a Denver-based ABC affiliate. 

Curtis covered Alaska’s marijuana legalization in 2014, and as a photojournalist living in Denver, has been at the forefront of the Decriminalize Denver movement, even providing some of the first broadcasted footage of a local mushroom grow. 
Curtis speaks about attending Psychedelic Club meetings and meeting James Casey, wanting to be the person to bring this story to the mainstream, and how these meetings and growing interest from the community were ultimately the incubators for the Decriminalize Denver, and later, Decriminalize Nature and #thankyouplantmedicine movements. 

They also discuss the National Psychedelic Club (of which Joe reveals he is now on the Board of Directors), Edward Snowden and the dangers of speaking with the media, and advice for how to protect one’s identity, the Telluride Mushroom Festival and documentaries like “Dosed,” the Psilocybin Mushroom Policy Review Panel, new startups in the field like MindMed, the Denver Mushroom Cooperative, MkUltra experiments in Denver, the importance of the #thankyouplantmedicine hashtag, and ultimately, how much Covid-19 has impacted the speed of progress in bringing legalization to the mainstream. 

Resources: 
www.facebook.com/somasagas

 

Notable quotes

On James Casey: “He was an awesome subject to sort of wrap the story around, and he was the perfect poster child because he had all the right ingredients- he was a veteran, really well-spoken, and just pretty straight-laced.” (9:41)

“It is interesting to watch, how the media sort of responds and works with stories that are on the fringes and then move slowly towards the mainstream.  It’s one of those things about our culture- it bends and shifts.  The times change and what was radical 10 years ago is normal now.” (13:51)

“We’ve had so many huge events that have taken place in our lifetimes that this kind of seems trivial… it’s not the highest priority anymore after we had the 2000 election, September 11th, the Iraq war.  Those things [psychedelics] aren’t as high on the list of things that we are supposed to be worried about anymore.” (14:45)

“I don’t think that we’re going to shy away from talking about psychedelics after a catastrophic virus collapses the world economy.  It’ll be an easy topic.” (15:57)

On #thankyouplantmedicine: “I don’t think there was necessarily a hashtag for drug policy reform that has been a conscious effort like that before, so it definitely gained some attention... If anything, it brought people together.  If it didn’t get this big media splash, it definitely helped grow the network.” (53:09)

About Jacob

Jacob is a photojournalist at Denver7, a Denver-based ABC affiliate.  He has been at the forefront of the Decriminalize Denver movement, even providing some of the first broadcasted footage of a local mushroom grow.

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Jun 02, 2020
Kyle and Joe - Solidarity Fridays - Week 9
01:02:32

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s Episode, Kyle and Joe sit down to talk about Grof Legacy Training, Peyote scarcity, a DMT survey on entities, and more.


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Navigating Psychedelics


Show Notes

Grof Legacy Training

  • Its based on Stanislav Grof’s research into psychedelic therapy, holotropic breathwork, transpersonal psychology, and spiritual emergencies
  • Dr. Stanislov Grof and his wife just launched this program
    • It’s not just about breathwork
  • His involvement in the Grof transpersonal training program dropped off in the last few years
    • He wasn't allowed to teach breathwork in the GTT model, there wasn't any growth in the company, so a lot of people like Grof left and started their own thing
    • Kyle says this is pretty common with trademarks and protocols
    • Joe says he's very excited about it
  • Kyle says Stan’s work is very important and a lot of the reason Psychedelics Today came to be 

Peyote

  • Native American Churches don't have as much access as they need to properly grow Peyote
    • Perhaps, in countries where Peyote isn't illegal, there should be growing of Peyote
  • Native American’s are in a bad spot due to colonialism
  • As insiders, we need to talk about how to use less Peyote
    • “Pick one, plant two” should be the mindset
  • Kyle says, “how do we just respect these sacred medicines?”

DMT Survey 

 

May 29, 2020
Erik Davis - High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experience in the Seventies
01:26:51

In this episode, Joe and Kyle interview Erik Davis, Author of High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experience in the Seventies. In the show they cover topics on La Chorrera, uncertainty, synchronicities and more.

May 26, 2020
Solidarity Fridays - Week 8 with Dave McGaughey
01:33:32

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s Episode, Kyle and Joe interview Dave McGaughey, Founding Partner of NorthStar. In the show, they talk about NorthStar, Ethics, and the story, “We Will Call It Pala”.

 

May 22, 2020
Dr. Mike Hart - Cannabis is Medicine
01:07:57

In today’s episode, Joe and Kyle sit down with Dr. Mike Hart. In the show they talk about Cannabis and Ketamine used as medicine.

3 Key Points:

  1. The main uses for Cannabis are for chronic pain and mental health. CBD is really good for people with inflammation.
  2. When it comes to any psychedelic/plant medicine therapy, it's all about agency. The power lies within the individual, the therapy and the drug are just tools to help the person obtain the power to heal themselves.
  3. Ketamine is a useful treatment for depression. It's instant, a patient can take it and it's effective right away, where typical antidepressants may take 4-6 weeks to kick in.


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Navigating Psychedelics


Show Notes

About Dr. Mike Hart

  • He attended Med school on Saba Island
  • Then he came to Ontario where he did his residency
  • 8 months after practicing he started prescribing cannabis
  • He got into cannabis because it's a great alternative to opioids and pain pills, etc.

Cannabis

  • The main uses for Cannabis are for chronic pain and mental health
    • CBD is really good for people with inflammation
    • CBD is good for anything with -itis like arthritis, etc
  • THC is found to be much better than CBD for things like sciatica and nerve pain
  • Kyle mentions that when he takes CBD he has flashbacks of ayahuasca dreams/experiences
    • CBD is not psychoactive in that it doesn't get you high
  • Kyle says that people can have spiritual experiences just by breathing, so the
    • CBD is just another vehicle that helps
  • Adding a small amount of THC to CBD isn't going to potentiate it, but there may be an entourage effect that can be a further benefit to a patient
    • Don't use more than 2.5mg of THC with CBD if you don't want psychoactive effects
  • Mike says that some people use CBD isolate, and that's great, but like an egg, it's best not to eat just the egg whites, it's best to eat the whole egg to get all of the benefits
    • So just like eating the whole egg, the best way to get all the benefits of cannabis is to use/consume the whole plant
    • There are definitely situations where using the whole plant is best, and other situations where isolation is best

Cannabis and Therapy

  • Anxiety can be treated very well with exposure therapy
    • Exposure therapy is exposing something you're afraid of, and exposing it over and over until its not an anxiety anymore
  • CBD can decrease learned fear
    • PTSD is a learned fear
    • “The people who end up doing the most in life, are the people who have had the most trauma. We need to tell people that their trauma does not define them.” - Mike
  • It's all about personal agency
    • It's not about the drug, its you
    • It's not about therapy, its you
    • The power is in you, its just learning how to harness and use that power
  • Mike says your relationships, your job, and your health are the three most important things to master
  • Going without something makes you more grateful for that thing

Ketamine

  • Mike has been prescribing Ketamine for just over a year now
    • It is helpful for mental health and chronic pain
    • Ketamine is really useful for treatment resistant depression
  • He prescribes Ketamine orally
    • He advises his patients to take it in the morning as soon as they wake up on an empty stomach
    • If it is taken that way, they get a psychoactive effect, and he thinks that it is the most effective way
    • Its instant, a patient can take it, and its effective right away, where typical antidepressants may take 4-6 weeks to kick in

Links

Website

Instagram

Twitter


About Dr. Mike Hart

Michael Hart, MD is the medical director and founder at Readytogo Clinic in London, Ontario. Readytogo Clinic focuses on cannabinoid medicine, but also offers family medicine services, IV vitamin therapy and specialized hormone testing. Dr. Hart is a recognized speaker on the topic of cannabis. He has spoken at CME events throughout Ontario, multiple cannabis conferences and has been featured on a variety of cannabis websites. In March of 2017, Dr. Hart released a free Ebook with his co-author Jeremy Kossen. Dr. Hart has seen first hand how the opioid epidemic is affecting our population and wanted to take action by finding a solution. Dr. Hart believes that cannabis is an excellent alternative to opioids and has seen excellent results in his practice. Dr. Hart emphasizes lifestyle changes in his medical practice and follows a low carb diet himself. Dr. Hart actively trains MMA at Adrenaline Training center and follows a comprehensive strength and conditioning program.

Designed to help the body with cellular energy and cardiovascular endurance.

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May 19, 2020
Kyle and Joe - Solidarity Fridays - Week 7
01:09:10

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s Episode, Kyle and Joe sit down to talk about therapists being unprepared to talk to people taking psychedelics, the drug war and more.


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Navigating Psychedelics


Show Notes

MAPS Press Release

Therapists Are Unprepared to Talk to People About Taking Psychedelics

  • Should there be some sort of body regulating therapist training in integration?
    • Should there be a standardized training?
  • There are going to be good therapists that care, and go out of their way and get the training, and there will be bad therapists, that do harm
    • It's a long and difficult topic
    • Should people be going to jail for being bad therapists?
  • Looking at breathwork, there are training groups, but there isn't one large, overarching group that governs all trainings
  • “Are we acting with integrity if we aren't bringing the utmost safety to the table?” - Joe

Group Setting Impact

  • How is COVID going to impact psychedelic tourism?
  • In breathwork, people are potentially coughing, crying, and in general just doing heavy breathing, COVID is super contagious

About Kyle

Kyle’s interest in exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness began when he was 16-years-old when he suffered a traumatic snowboarding accident. Waking up after having a near-death experience changed Kyle’s life. Since then, Kyle has earned his B.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, where he studied the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness by exploring shamanism, plant medicine, Holotropic Breathwork, and the roots/benefits of psychedelic psychotherapy. Kyle has co-taught two college-level courses. One of the courses Kyle created as a capstone project, “Stanislav Grof’s Psychology of Extraordinary Experiences,” and the other one which he co-created, “The History of Psychedelics.”

Kyle completed his M.S. in clinical mental health counseling with an emphasis in somatic psychology. Kyle’s clinical background in mental health consists of working with at-risk teenagers in crisis and with individuals experiencing an early-episode of psychosis. Kyle also facilitates Transpersonal Breathwork workshops.

About Joe

Joe studied philosophy in New Hampshire, where he earned his B.A.. After stumbling upon the work of Stanislav Grof during his undergraduate years, Joe began participating in Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Vermont in 2003. Joe helped facilitate Holotropic and Transpersonal Breathwork workshops while he spent his time in New England. He is now working in the software industry as well as hosting a few podcasts. Joe now coordinates Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork workshops, in Breckenridge, Colorado.

Designed to help the body with cellular energy and cardiovascular endurance.

Get a 30 day free audible trial at audibletrial.com/psychedelicstoday

 

May 15, 2020
Eamon Armstrong - Iboga, Ethics and Rites of Passage
01:39:34

In this episode, Kyle and Joe interview Eamon Armstrong, host of the Podcast, Life is a Festival. In the show, they talk about Eamon’s Iboga experience, the festival culture, rites of passage, ethics and more.

3 Key Points:

  1. Eamon Armstrong is the host of Life is a Festival, a podcast promoting a lifestyle of adventure and personal development through the lens of festival culture.
  2. Maya is an intelligence platform for psychedelic therapists to manage their clients and their protocols. 
  3. Rites of Passage can look different for everybody, they can look like going to Africa to be initiated in an Ibogaine ceremony, to attending Burning Man. 

Show Notes

About Eamon

  • Eamon is the host of the Podcast, Life is a Festival
    • It's not about festivals, it's about how to make life like a festival
  • Eamon is very passionate about mental wellness
  • After graduating college, he felt very lost
  • He was throwing mushroom tea parties, making electronic music with his friends
    • The key to throwing a mushroom tea party is to have people drink less mushrooms than they think that they're drinking, everyone just thinks they are tripping harder than they were
  • He went to Burning Man in 2010
    • He started working in social media for Burning Man’s off playa events
  • Psychedelics and harm reduction became core to their editorial voice
    • He worked closely with Psychedelic Peer Support, Zendo, Kosmicare, etc

Ibogaine Experience

  • Eamon attended an Iboga retreat in Gabon, Africa, and he says it was more about the retreat than the Iboga
    • He was in the chamber for 5 days, and he was alone in it
  • This retreat was in the Bwiti religion
  • He really went there for a full sledgehammer experience
    • He felt he had some addicted aspects that were hindering his sexual experiences
  • Iboga goes to the root of the trauma and shows you where the addictive pattern of behavior is
  • Iboga has a long integration period
  • Iboga is a root, and he consumed it in a form of a tangled nest
    • He felt very blasted open from the experience
  • Iboga took him directly to his anger
  • “We have in our modern Western Culture, a lot of lost, young people” - Eamon
    • “The value of a rite of passage, is that you are confronted with certain things that you can't get to on your own” - Eamon
  • The fact that you can die in an Iboga experience, is part of the initiation

Rites of Passage

  • Burning Man isn't a rite of passage, but it can be used as a rite of passage
    • Burning Man is a temporary experience in civic living, it is not orchestrated by elders
  • There is a growing topic on psychedelic parenting, and taking psychedelics with children

Maya

  • Maya is designed in partnership with psychedelic practitioners & ceremony leaders
  • Maya is an intelligence platform for psychedelic therapists to manage their clients and their protocols
  • Ethics in psychedelics are so important right now
  • This does not replace the therapist, it's everything the therapist needs to support their clients in healing
  • “The ecosystem itself will thrive when we are all working in service to each other” - Eamon
  • “If you want to be a part of the cool kids, and the cool kids are doing it ethically, then you have to do it ethically” - Eamon

Final Thoughts

  • The soul is the most beautiful thing
  • “Psychedelics as medicine, treat society, beyond individuals” - Eamon

Links

Eamon Armstrong Website

Life is a Festival Facebook Group

Maya

Maya Health Facebook Page

Psychedelic Therapy Podcast

Psychedelic Therapy Podcast by Maya Facebook Group


About Eamon Armstrong

Eamon Armstrong is the creator and host of Life is a Festival, promoting a lifestyle of adventure and personal development through the lens of festival culture. He is the former Creative Director and public face of Chip Conley’s industry-leading online festival guide and community Fest300, where he was a global community builder. Eamon’s belief in the transformational power of psychedelics led him to take part in a traditional Bwiti initiation in Gabon, and to become a trained Sitter with MAP’s Zendo Project. Eamon is a passionate advocate for mature masculinity and offers public talks and workshops from mythopoetic men's work to stand-up comedy on integrating masculinity.

Headshot Photo Credit: GBK Photos 

 

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May 12, 2020
Kyle and Joe - Solidarity Fridays - Week 6 with Brett Greene
01:27:16

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s Episode, Kyle and Joe sit down with Brett Greene, who was the very first guest on Psychedelics Today four years ago. In response to last week’s episode on the Corporadelic topic, Brett comes on the show to talk about companies and drug discovery.


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Show Notes

Brett Greene

  • Brett Greene was the very first guest on Psychedelics Today four years ago
  • Brett and Kyle originally met at the Horizons: Perspectives on Psychedelics conference in New York City in 2013.
  • He works at The Center for Drug Discovery

Drug Development

  • At his new company, they are making drugs from tryptamines that are more predictable
    • His team has not only done this countless of times with the FDA, they have also done it with psychedelics

Ethics

  • The psychedelic movement doesn't own psychedelics, they don't own molecules, but they do own their history
  • “We should get away from the right and wrongness of the mechanics, and get into the right and wrongness of the ethics” - Brett
  • “Patents are the language of invention” - Brett
  • “An ethical charter is one that covers cognitive liberty, business ethics, and responsibility and accountability for patient safety” - Brett
  • What are the minimal acceptable requirements when doing this work?

Final Thoughts

  • We need to be kind with each other
  • We need to balance truth with kindness and compassion
  • For those interested in a work postiton email Brett@adeliatx.com 

About Brett Greene

Brett works in research administration under Alexandros Makriyannis, one of the world's top cannabinoid researchers. His job consists of a multitude of functions, ranging from administrative support for a team of 15+ grant submitting scientists to lab equipment and lab management, and diverse recruitment for NIH grants.

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May 08, 2020
Tom and Sheri Eckert - Oregon Psilocybin Therapy Initiative
01:11:47

In this episode, Joe interviews Tom and Sheri Eckert, organizers of the Oregon Psilocybin Therapy Initiative. The IP 34 is the bill that would legalize psilocybin therapy.

3 Key Points:

  1. IP 34 asks the Oregon Health Authority to create a licensing system that will create a regulated program where Oregonians suffering from depression, anxiety, trauma and other challenges can see a licensed and trained facilitator to receive supervised psilocybin therapy.
  2. IP 34 was written by licensed therapists in Oregon along with the country’s leading advocates in the field. It is supported by healthcare professionals, treatment providers, veterans’ groups and community leaders across the state.
  3. There has been a multitude of studies from leading medical research institutions such as Johns Hopkins, UCLA, and NYU showing that psilocybin therapy works.

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Show Notes

About

  • Tom and Sheri began their interest in psilocybin research about 5 years ago when they read an article in The New Yorker by Michal Pollan
  • They realized how powerful psilocybin was for clinical work
  • They are both therapists, and were inspired to find out if there was a way to create a modality that allowed them to provide psilocybin therapy to help their clients

Psilocybin Assisted Psychotherapy

  • Psychotherapy is supposed to be experiential, the breakthrough is where the change happens
  • Sheri says that psilocybin therapy gets all parts of the brain in communication together
  • “The more intense the mystical experience the more clinical outcomes that are achieved” - Tom

Ballot Initiative

  • They started in 2015
  • They wanted the breakthrough studies and the research proving low risks to work for them
  • The psychedelic community was very helpful
  • They went through rotations with the way the initiative was written
  • They like the therapy model, its safe, careful and mindful

Clause

  • Joe asks about a Supremacy Clause, where the state supersedes local districts
    • This initiative does not get in the way of any other initiative
  • There are angles on all different types of drug policy reform
  • There is nothing in the IP34 that blocks any other initiative like decriminalization
    • We are all a part of the big picture, we all need to work together

GMP Psilocybin

  • They wanted to keep this in the frame of non-commercialization
    • Their goal with this is not about money, it’s really about the healing
    • “We are trying to move forward a healing modality to help people, we are trying to legalize psilocybin assisted psychotherapy” - Tom
  • There is a part in the initiative that says measures will have to be taken to make sure the psilocybin is ‘food grade’ standard or in general just clean and safe

Oregonians to Sign the Petition

  • Download the petition, sign it, and mail it in

Final Thoughts

  • Sheri says that the team behind the initiative is inspired by what is happening globally around psilocybin and research
  • They are right at the end of their signatures, but they need help to reach the goal
  • “We've got to see the bigger picture here, and get behind it.” - Tom

Links

Website


About Tom and Sheri Eckert

As husband-and-wife founders of the Oregon Psilocybin Society (OPS) and authors of the Psilocybin Service Initiative (PSI), Tom and Sheri Eckert have set in motion a historic campaign to legalize Psilocybin Services, also known as Psilocybin Assisted Therapy, in their home state of Oregon. A growing number of Oregonians are getting behind the idea, largely in response to the latest science. The Eckerts, with a growing army of volunteers, are spreading a truth held increasingly self-evident: that the psilocybin experience, when facilitated under safe and supportive conditions, can be a life-changing gift.In addition to their activism, the Eckert’s own and operate “Innerwork” – a private psychotherapy practice serving the Portland metro area. Included in their catalog of services is their groundbreaking “Better Man” program, which is shown to neutralize intimate partner and family violence. Sheri has been awarded a Cosmic Sister Women of the Psychedelic Renaissance in support of her presentation at the Spirit Plant Medicine conference.

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May 05, 2020
Kyle and Joe - Solidarity Fridays - Week 5
01:05:11

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s Episode with Kyle and Joe, they talk mostly about Corpora-delic, companies and wealthy individuals investing in the psychedelic industry.


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Show Notes

Psychedelics Company Orthogonal Thinker Closes $6M Seed Round

  • The company is valued at 111 million
  • The CEO, Jason Hobson says, “The current health pandemic has resulted in a societal shift in the way we think about our health and the importance of access to treatment, both physical health and mental health. Ei.Ventures believes this is the right time to lean into mental health issues such as mood disorders and addiction, and eventual access to therapeutic treatments from innovations in botanical compounds that have been around for thousands of years.”
  • Joe and Kyle say that there is so much money coming in, and it worries the psychedelic community because they aren't used to seeing capitalism
  • Joe says that he hopes that some patents don't equate to ruining access

Thiel Backs Psychedelic-Drug Startup in Latest Funding Round

  • “Are these companies going to bully the smaller organizations out of existence so that diversity doesn't really exist in the way we think it should?” - Joe
  • Medical is a great model, but it should be reduced to that only
  • Kyle says the sacred-ness feels like it may be taken away, and big companies just look at it as a commodity

Medical Researchers Worry Silicon Valley Could Screw Up Psychedelics

  • "Not everyone sees this opportunity for entrepreneurship as a good thing. For researchers looking into the efficacy of psychedelics for therapeutic purposes, these substances are far more than a market opportunity—they’re potentially life-saving medications. And after decades of prohibition, psychedelics are just barely gaining mainstream acceptance.’ - from the article
  • People are bold enough to stand up to companies they don't agree with
    It's no joke how much money was spent on making Tim Leary look bad

DARPA Wants Benefits of Psychedelics but Without Hallucinations

  • The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is launching a new drug program for treating soldiers with PTSD, depression, anxiety, and drug addiction, and it is drawing inspiration from psychedelic research.
  • Kyle mentions that this is tricky, its both a biochemical and experiential thing
  • Will eliminating the hallucinations ruin the experience?
    • Joe says that there are some people that are so unstable that a psychedelic experience can be really a lot
    • Joe also says that there arent alot of drugs that their use needs to be supervised (medically) and psychedelics are some of them

How Climate Justice Could End the Drug War

  • Joe recorded with Erica Darragh from Sunrise Movement
  • Their talk was about how climate justice could end the drug war
    • They talked about more equitable ways of including people of less power, influence or privilege into the world of psychedelics
  • The more ahead we are of the government, the more likely we are to influence policy, Joe says it's best to just stay informed

A North Star for the Emerging Psychedelics Industry

  • If we aren't coming from psychedelic values when bringing these substances into the mainstream, then what are we doing?
  • What are psychedelic values?
    • Valuing the planet, valuing your place in the planet, a sense of connection, cooperation vs. competition, how do we honor a lineage or where these medicines come from? these could be some psychedelic values
  • Following the permaculture principles and applying them to life is a great tool for systems thinking

About Kyle

Kyle’s interest in exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness began when he was 16-years-old when he suffered a traumatic snowboarding accident. Waking up after having a near-death experience changed Kyle’s life. Since then, Kyle has earned his B.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, where he studied the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness by exploring shamanism, plant medicine, Holotropic Breathwork, and the roots/benefits of psychedelic psychotherapy. Kyle has co-taught two college-level courses. One of the courses Kyle created as a capstone project, “Stanislav Grof’s Psychology of Extraordinary Experiences,” and the other one which he co-created, “The History of Psychedelics.”

Kyle completed his M.S. in clinical mental health counseling with an emphasis in somatic psychology. Kyle’s clinical background in mental health consists of working with at-risk teenagers in crisis and with individuals experiencing an early-episode of psychosis. Kyle also facilitates Transpersonal Breathwork workshops.

About Joe

Joe studied philosophy in New Hampshire, where he earned his B.A.. After stumbling upon the work of Stanislav Grof during his undergraduate years, Joe began participating in Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Vermont in 2003. Joe helped facilitate Holotropic and Transpersonal Breathwork workshops while he spent his time in New England. He is now working in the software industry as well as hosting a few podcasts. Joe now coordinates Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork workshops, in Breckenridge, Colorado.

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May 01, 2020
Amanda Feilding - The Beckley Foundation: Changing Minds through Psychedelic Research
01:17:50

In this episode, Joe interviews Amanda Feilding, Founder and Director of The Beckley Foundation. In the show, they cover topics on psychedelic research, policy work, regulation, and the benefits of psychedelics in a time of crisis.

3 Key Points:

  1. The Beckley Foundation pioneers psychedelic research to drive evidence-based drug policy reform, founded and directed by Amanda Feilding as a UK-based think-tank and NGO.
  2. There is some interesting research happening around LSD expanding the neuroplasticity of the mind and increasing neurogenesis.
  3. We are in the midst of a mental health crisis, especially in the West, and psychedelics may be helpful in improving mental health.

Show Notes

The Beckley Foundation

  • Amanda says she felt alone for a long time, they were taking a scientific approach, and it was much too serious for the underground
  • The Beckley Foundation is doing policy work, medical work, scientific work, etc
  • Amanda has a passion for science, but felt a social responsibility to do the policy work
    • It's a very destructive work with ‘drugs’, because they are all under the same umbrella, but we psychedelic enthusiasts know, that psychedelics are beneficial and different than other drugs
  • Joe mentions he always thought how crazy LSD sentencing is, in some places it is longer than murder charges
  • “The ego is really a mirror of the government, and it can be much too restrictive and damaging” - Amanda

LSD

  • LSD increases cognitive function by expanding the networks of integrative centers in the brain
    • Amanda thinks that LSD is better at increasing cognition than mushrooms
  • She says they are doing exciting work with LSD and how it expands neuroplasticity of the mind, and how it increases neurogenesis
    • She thinks we haven't really even scratched the surface of exploring the benefits of these compounds
  • Joe says he is hearing about a lot of athletes using LSD as a performance enhancing drug
  • Neuroplasticity is like when the brain becomes hot metal and it can adapt and change

Crisis

  • We have a horrible mental health crisis in the west, 1 in 3 teenage girls are depressed
  • Out of all death causes in the US, air pollution is one of the largest
  • “Our society needs a paradigm shift” - Amanda
  • Amanda says that she doesn't believe that all people need to take psychedelics, but that they can be very beneficial

Regulation

  • Joe says he would love to see regulation everywhere
  • The cause of most drug harms are prohibition
  • Portugal and Switzerland are great models for boosting public service
  • Recognizing the potential benefits helps (starting with medical but not stopping there)

Final Thoughts

  • We are all moving in the right direction
  • The spreading of knowledge and education is the right path
  • The intuitive gains are the main benefits of these altered states of consciousness

Links

The Beckley Foundation


About Amanda Fielding

Amanda Feilding has been called the ‘hidden hand’ behind the renaissance of psychedelic science, and her contribution to global drug policy reform has also been pivotal and widely acknowledged. Amanda was first introduced to LSD in the mid-1960s, at the height of the first wave of scientific research into psychedelics. Impressed by its capacity to initiate mystical states of consciousness and heighten creativity, she quickly recognised its transformative and therapeutic power. Inspired by her experiences, she began studying the mechanisms underlying the effects of psychedelic substances and dedicated herself to exploring ways of harnessing their potential to cure sickness and enhance wellbeing. In 1996, Amanda set up The Foundation to Further Consciousness, changing its name to the Beckley Foundation in 1998.

 

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Apr 28, 2020
Kyle and Joe – Solidarity Fridays – Week Four
01:10:13

In today’s Solidarity Fridays Episode with Kyle and Joe, they talk about current topics in the news including MindMed, psilocybin synthesis, treating climate grief with psychedelics, psychedelic decriminalization and more.


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Show Notes

MindMed

  • Psychedelic Pharmaceutical Company MindMed Develops LSD Neutralizer Technology To Shorten and Stop LSD Trips
  • MindMed is a psychedelic Pharmaceutical company that is exploring LSD and patenting anything they find during the research
  • Joe comments and says that organizations like Zendo are able to do optimal work and we don't necessarily need a Pharma company to help in recreational/festival settings
    • But in a clinical setting, this is more necessary
  • “Are these big companies coming into the space as allies are not?” - Joe
    • Joe says he thinks they are part of the ecosystem, for better or worse
  • Joe says, imagine if drugs were legal, they would be so much safer
    • Kyle questions what legalization would look like not in a capitalistic market

Scientists Turn Yeast into Psychedelic Psilocybin Factories

  • There is a lot of reason why people choose not to play in commodified markets
  • “How do we know what is true? How do we know what is helpful for us?” - Joe
    • Joe says lets not have a quick easy answer
  • "It's infeasible and way too expensive to extract psilocybin from magic mushrooms and the best chemical synthesis methods require expensive and difficult-to-source starting substrates” - a quote from the article

Can Psychedelics Treat Climate Grief?

  • 20 years is when it's going to be really bad for climate change
  • It's been more prominent, people getting therapy for trauma of what's happening in nature
  • The question of a conference that Joe and Kyle attended was, “Can extraordinary experiences help save us from planetary, ecological collapse?”
    • We are able to make people feel more connected to ecological systems with psychedelics
  • We have to be able to feel the grief, but we have to be able to act
  • Are we stewards of the earth, or do we want to work pointless jobs and be a part of consumerism?

D.C. Would Vote To Decriminalize Psychedelics, Poll Shows

  • If COVID wasn't a thing currently, it looks like decrim would happen in the belly of the beast, in D.C.
    • Despite the public health crisis, its looks like citizens want to reassess entheogenic use
  • “When there is hardship, creativity seems to spike” - Joe
    • Joe says to check out the microdose VR by Android Jones

About Kyle

Kyle’s interest in exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness began when he was 16-years-old when he suffered a traumatic snowboarding accident. Waking up after having a near-death experience changed Kyle’s life. Since then, Kyle has earned his B.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, where he studied the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness by exploring shamanism, plant medicine, Holotropic Breathwork, and the roots/benefits of psychedelic psychotherapy. Kyle has co-taught two college-level courses. One of the courses Kyle created as a capstone project, “Stanislav Grof’s Psychology of Extraordinary Experiences,” and the other one which he co-created, “The History of Psychedelics.”

Kyle completed his M.S. in clinical mental health counseling with an emphasis in somatic psychology. Kyle’s clinical background in mental health consists of working with at-risk teenagers in crisis and with individuals experiencing an early-episode of psychosis. Kyle also facilitates Transpersonal Breathwork workshops.

About Joe

Joe studied philosophy in New Hampshire, where he earned his B.A.. After stumbling upon the work of Stanislav Grof during his undergraduate years, Joe began participating in Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Vermont in 2003. Joe helped facilitate Holotropic and Transpersonal Breathwork workshops while he spent his time in New England. He is now working in the software industry as well as hosting a few podcasts. Joe now coordinates Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork workshops, in Breckenridge, Colorado.

Designed to help the body with cellular energy and cardiovascular endurance.

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Apr 24, 2020
Melissa Stangl and Daniel Cleland - Soltara Healing Center: Where Integration meets Tradition
01:11:54

In this episode, Kyle interviews Melissa Stangl and Daniel Cleland, Co-founders of Soltara Healing Center. They talk about integration, Shipibo healing lineage, accessibility of psychedelics, and psychedelic tourism. 

3 Key Points:

  1. Soltara is a Healing Center dedicated toward  integration as well as practicing and preserving the Shipibo tradition of Ayahusca healing. 
  2. It doesn't make sense to take nature based traditions and turn it into instant gratification and business. The further you get from tradition, the less beneficial it may be.
  3. Tourism for Ayahuasca can bring both harm and benefits to the local community. Reinforcing the heritage, paying the healers very well and giving back to the forests in terms of sustainability are all ways that Soltara is using Ayahuasca tourism to help the local communities.

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Show Notes

About Melissa

  • Melissa originally comes from the STEM field
  • She was working in corporate America and was in search for a deeper meaning
  • She met Dan and after joining one of his initial ayahuasca journeys into Peru, it changed her mindset about healing
  • Dan looked for someone to help him after starting up his first ayahuasca center in Peru, and so she dropped everything and moved to the jungle to make it happen
  • After witnessing the healing potential working within the Shipibo tradition, and the need for integration within the community, she later founded Soltara with Dan in Costa Rica

About Daniel

  • Daniel grew up in a small town in Canada
    • He followed the typical life trajectory, go to school, go to college, get a job, etc
  • He didn't have big ambitions at the time, very in line with the middle class area that he grew up in
    • After entering the work-force, he was in un-ambitious jobs
    • He thought “are there just 30 years of doing this until this is over?”
  • He felt a strong pull towards South America
    • He was very close to nature in his upbringing
  • He got a job leading tours
  • He had a personal crisis that led him to do some soul searching
  • Within the span of a few years, the trajectory pushed him to build his own healing center in Peru

Pillars of Soltara

  • They feel very strongly about having the Shipibo healers lead the ceremony, and everything that they (Mel, Dan and the team) do is to help honor the tradition
  • They focus a lot on integration
    • For the Shipibo culture, their life is integraton, but for a lot of people that are coming from the Western world and other places, that is not the case
    • They started collaborating with clinical psychologists to help create a program that puts the retreat at the start of the program, the work comes after
    • Soltara includes a workbook for integration afterward
  • Our transition times in modern life are shamed, getting your period, having a mid life crisis, having a psychedelic experience, but these experiences can be very sacred
  • “Connecting to the sacredness of life is so healing and so needed for modern-day society” - Melissa

Container for Safety and Integration

  • The sensationalism is more around the experience itself
    • People think that you just go in and have the experience and then your life is changed forever and that is not the case
  • A place where people not only can find who they are, but then be who they are in that container, and meet people and create community, is so powerful
    • Kyle said when he attended his retreat there, he can't shake how safe he felt
      He said it really stood out to him, for someone who is looking at integration and so involved in this field
  • “I would like to bring people to this tradition in a way that is accessible, and I think that starts with safety” - Melissa

Corporadelic

  • There are new products, treatment centers, etc
    • The further away you get from tradition, the less beneficial it may be
  • Dan says it doesn't make sense to take nature based traditions for instant gratification, monopoly, and business
    • The ceremony is the healing part, the ayahuasca allows one to connect with the plants, and that it is just the songs in ceremony that really create the healing
    • Melissa says she understands that the science is helping the movement, but she is so afraid that big corporations will just run with this and ruin tradition around it
  • Kyle says during his experience at Soltara, he just felt flooded with gratitude to experience the medicine healing in nature and in the Shipibo culture, where it is natural

Ayahuasca Tourism

  • Tourism for Ayahuasca causes harm but also brings benefits to the community too
  • Dan says they are expanding the work, they are not taking away from the traditions
    • It takes a certain capacity to travel to the jungle, speak the language, figure out where to go, how to get there, and how to receive healing is not typically possible for the vast majority of people
  • The Shipibo is receiving really good pay doing this work, which isn't typically possible for the indigenous people
  • This is also reinforcing the heritage, encouraging the children to continue the traditional path
    • Now it’s not only a cultural heritage, it's also a way to make a living for the community members
  • You don't cut down trees to grow ayahuasca, you grow ayahuasca among the trees, so it's protecting the jungle
  • In recent years there has been more information and collective awareness to ask the hard questions, Bia Labate has been on the forefront of this, asking the indigenous leaders the important questions of how to keep Ayahuasca tourism sustainable, beneficial and protected

Sustainability

  • They just completed a fundraiser for the Amazon
    • They have been collaborating with Amazon Watch, and they raised over $10,000
    • They are working to plant new Ayahuasca, not to harvest but just to put back into the jungle

Final Thoughts

  • Melissa suggest listeners to watch Reconnect, a movie about a man’s journey to Soltara

Links

Soltara Website


About Melissa Stangl

After taking a leap of faith in September 2015 to step out of Corporate America and into the Amazon jungle, Melissa has since used her background in engineering, science, and management to help advance the plant medicine and psychedelic movements – first by helping run a top-rated ayahuasca center in Peru as Operations Manager, and then as Director of Business Development – and now as Founding Partner and COO for Soltara. She is passionate about using her technical, managerial, and problem-solving skills to help bridge the gap between the Western world and the incredible healing potential of plant medicines and holistic health. Melissa is honored to be a part of this project and working with such a high-quality team that understands the importance and sacredness of this work. Her ethos is one of authenticity, professionalism, respect for tradition, transparency, and high-quality service. These mutual tenets are the team’s vision for Soltara as a whole, and she is grateful to take part in creating a space that is a strong conduit for healing, sustainability, and knowledge, empowering each guest to become global beacons for positive change.

About Daniel Cleland

Daniel Cleland is the Founding Partner/Chairman and CEO of Soltara Healing Center. He is an international entrepreneur, traveller, and author of the book, Pulse of the Jungle: Ayahuasca, Adventures and Social Enterprise in the Amazon. Originating in Walkerton, Ontario, he has spent over a decade globe-trotting and hosting group tours all over Latin America and in the deepest parts of the Amazon to work with traditional indigenous medicine practices. After completing his Master’s of Intercultural and International Communication, Daniel founded the company Pulse Tours, a company operating in Peru which became one of the highest rated shamanic retreat centers in the world before he sold it completely in 2017. He believes in supporting sustainability initiatives around the world, such as a free solar power installation that he spearheaded for an entire village in the Amazon in 2017, and the work being done by Amazon Rainforest Conservancy, a Canadian NGO wherein Daniel sits as a member of the advisory board.

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Apr 21, 2020
Kyle and Joe – Solidarity Fridays – Week Three
01:01:49

In today’s Solidarity Fridays Episode with Kyle and Joe, they talk about the Shadow Panel, embracing the weird in psychedelia, what is real, re-examining ‘normal’, and more.


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Show Notes

Shadow Panel

  • Topics in the Panel include
    • Ayahuasca retreat centers
    • Maximization culture to use psychedelics for optimization
    • Ketamine therapy and shadow as aspects of character
    • The collective shadow and astrology
    • and much more!

Erik Davis

  • Joe and Erik just had a call and they talked about his book High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experience in the Seventies (The MIT Press)
    • It is a study of the spiritual provocations to be found in the work of Philip K. Dick, Terence McKenna, and Robert Anton Wilson
    • It's a really nice survey of the weird
    • “Are you acknowledging what you're getting by believing something is true? It's a part of your analysis”
  • Joe says if you're into the weird stuff in psychedelics, this book is for you. If you are only into the clinical stuff, then this is good for you.
    • Kyle says sometimes we don't give enough credit to the weirdness in the psychedelic space
  • Corporadelic is a means of spiritual bypassing
  • The weirdness is core to what the psychedelic experience is

What is Real?

  • Psyche means more than just mind
    • When its mind, body, spirit, breath, it seems more accurate
  • It is worth reading Alfred Whitehead and James Fadiman, Philosophy is important
  • We are trying to understand and have helpful language around the psychedelic experience
    • “There are no whole truths, there are only half truths”
  • Kyle said that at the core of our being, how do we know what is true and real?
    • At the fundamental truth of what real is, Kyle says that sitting in the CAT scan machine and being on the brink of death, that's the only place where truth sits for him

Psychedelic Liberty Summit

  • Saturday and Sunday April 25th and 26th
  • Receive a discount here
  • This is a psychedelic conference that turned virtual due to COVID-19

Group Work

  • Breathwork, retreat centers, etc are at an undetermined standstill because we don't know how this is going to plan out
  • The Navigating Psychedelics Today Online class has students learn the information first and then come together to talk about it
  • There are so many means of transmission
    • Kyle mentions he read something about COVID being transmitted on the soles of shoes
  • We will probably need additional shelter in place measures all the way until 2022
  • We are almost hitting 9/11 death toll numbers on a daily basis

Re-examining Normal

  • Do we want to go back to the way things were? Or do we want to take this weird/uncertain time and do something with it?
  • The worst of climate change is only a mere 20 years out
  • It's easy to have emotional heartbreak when ecological destruction happens
    • Eco-psychology is a huge field

Mind Medicine Australia

Final Thoughts

  • Navigating Psychedelics for Clinicians and Therapists, May co-hort is SOLD OUT
    The wait list for the next co-hort can be found here 

 


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About Kyle

Kyle’s interest in exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness began when he was 16-years-old when he suffered a traumatic snowboarding accident. Waking up after having a near-death experience changed Kyle’s life. Since then, Kyle has earned his B.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, where he studied the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness by exploring shamanism, plant medicine, Holotropic Breathwork, and the roots/benefits of psychedelic psychotherapy. Kyle has co-taught two college-level courses. One of the courses Kyle created as a capstone project, “Stanislav Grof’s Psychology of Extraordinary Experiences,” and the other one which he co-created, “The History of Psychedelics.”

Kyle completed his M.S. in clinical mental health counseling with an emphasis in somatic psychology. Kyle’s clinical background in mental health consists of working with at-risk teenagers in crisis and with individuals experiencing an early-episode of psychosis. Kyle also facilitates Transpersonal Breathwork workshops.

About Joe

Joe studied philosophy in New Hampshire, where he earned his B.A.. After stumbling upon the work of Stanislav Grof during his undergraduate years, Joe began participating in Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Vermont in 2003. Joe helped facilitate Holotropic and Transpersonal Breathwork workshops while he spent his time in New England. He is now working in the software industry as well as hosting a few podcasts. Joe now coordinates Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork workshops, in Breckenridge, Colorado.

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Apr 17, 2020
Michelle Janikian - Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion
01:13:36

In this episode, Joe interviews Michelle Janikian, Author of Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion. In the show, they talk about Michelle’s book, the need to speak about the unspoken, and how psychedelic experiences differ for everyone.

3 Key Points:

  1. Michelle Janikian is Author of the book, Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion, an easy-to-use guide to understanding magic mushrooms, from tips and trips to microdosing and psychedelic therapy.
  2. Psychedelics can help people, but they don't solve all problems. Doing the homework after an experience is so important.
  3. The psychedelic subculture has a lot of repressed stuff going on like sexual abuse. We need to speak about the things that aren't necessarily good for the movement, we need to talk about all of it. 


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Show Notes

About Michelle

  • Michelle was originally a cannabis journalist
    • Then she was a staff writer for Herb
  • She then started writing her own book, Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion
    • So much has been happening with mushrooms lately, and Michelle thought we really needed a resource on how to use mushrooms safely
  • Ulysses Press did a few Cannabis books
    • Michelle was approached by them, they wanted to do a mushroom guide
  • She first took mushrooms when she was 17
    • She took them for fun, but had so many deep and meaningful experiences too
  • Michelle believes there are multiple right ways to use psilocybin, either therapeutically, ceremonially, recreationally, etc.
    • "As long as you're being safe with your surroundings, and with yourself, anyway is the right way (except for the fact that they are still illegal)" - Michelle
  • In places where mushrooms are decriminalized, she mentions it totally changes your comfort level and experience when you're not so afraid to have them on you

Retreat

  • Michelle just volunteered as a trip sitter at a week long women's retreat in Mexico at  Luz Eterna Retreats
  • She says she doesn't have all the answers, but the group environment can be really great for some, and not good at all for others
  • She suggests, “do what feels right for you

Routes of Administration

  • There isn't one ideal form of administration across all drugs
  • Joe says one route of administration may be good for one person, and not for another
  • You can powder the mushrooms and put them into capsules, put them on food, eat them plain, make a tea out of them, etc
    • Michelle says she has a great recipe in her book for mushroom tea to prevent nausea

Different for Everyone

  • Michelle felt a calling to write the book because she says many other books and publications were coming out, and she didn't want some people to feel upset when psychedelics didn't just ‘heal them’
  • She says psychedelics help her, but they don't solve all of her problems
    • Doing the homework after an experience is so important

The Unspoken

  • She says she feels uninspired to write about the ‘black and white’, the same old, stereotypical narrative
    • She wants to write about the grey, the unexpected, the in-between
  • Michelle asks how do we talk about the things that aren't right for the movement? Like the sexual abuse that happens in this space
  • This psychedelic subculture has a lot of repressed stuff going on, and how do we talk about it?
  • We need to keep learning in this field to keep improving, it is dense and detailed
  • Michelle leaves us with a final thought, “read more books written by women!”

Links

Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion: An Informative, Easy-to-Use Guide to Understanding Magic Mushrooms―From Tips and Trips to Microdosing and Psychedelic Therapy

Website


About Michelle Janikian

Michelle Janikian is the author of Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion, the down-to-earth guide that details how to use magic mushrooms “like an adult.” As a journalist, she got her start writing about cannabis for publications like High Times, Rolling Stone and Herb. Now, she writes a column for Playboy on all things drug related and also contributes regularly to DoubleBlind Mag, MERRY JANE, Psychedelic’s Today and others. She’s passionate about the healing potential of psychedelic plants and substances, especially psilocybin and cannabis, and the legalization and de- stigmatization of all drugs. Michelle studied writing and psychology at Sarah Lawrence College before traveling extensively in Latin America and eventually settling down in southern Mexico. Born in New York City and raised in New Jersey, Michelle ventures back to the States a few times a year to give talks and workshops on safe mushroom use and other cannabis and psychedelic related topics. 

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Apr 14, 2020
Kyle and Joe – Solidarity Fridays – Week Two
01:13:49

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s episode with Kyle and Joe, they cover current events on psychedelics for treatment of COVID-19 trauma, an article on single dose psilocybin effects, psychedelic investments, self care and more.


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Show Notes

A Single High Dose of Psilocybin Alters Brain Function Up to One Month Later

  • It was a small study of only 12 people
  • The article states, the researchers found that self-reported emotional distress was reduced one week after psilocybin administration, but returned to baseline levels at one month after psilocybin administration

Doctor Calls for "Temporary Approval" of Psychedelics to Treat COVID-19 Trauma

  • There were a few doctors and people that didn't understand the value of psychedelics being used as psychiatric tools
  • Kyle thinks especially of all of the first-responders that are working non stop, without a break, for weeks on end, witnessing tons of people dying daily, and then trying to come back and process this
    • The mental health, long term of these people is going to be so impacted
  • Then we have to think about the people that can't come together for a funeral after they lose someone
  • This pandemic is going to be traumatizing for people
    • Joe says this looks like a global ego death, all of the systems that we have had before are not adequate
  • The Spanish flu of 1918 was only a few years away from the Great Depression
  • We know that traumas influence health and behaviors, but we have tools and technologies to get ahead of this, from an epigenetic standpoint

Psychedelic Investments

  • Kyle and Joe talk for a while about psychedelics and money and research and funding
    • It's a tricky thing, because we want there to be funding to make this accessible, but we want people to invest with integrity and to not start a monopoly on the funding
  • Joe says we (as a company) have been approached by investors, but we have been hesitant to stay with our vision, keep our integrity and stay on track with our mission

Self Care

  • Kyle says stay in the present moment, limit news consumption (watch it maybe once a day to know what's going on, but then put the phone down and not drown in it)
  • It's helpful to develop more of a spiritual practice in this time (yoga, meditation)
  • Self care is going to look different for everybody
    • Joe says ‘Maslow it’, get good sleep, drink good water, satisfy basic needs, those are first step during this time
    • Kyle says that he uses movement, somatic work, breathing into places in the body that are tense, etc
  • Kyle says that those who are doing a lot of online work, take time to move and stretch
    • This is a time to do a lot of work we have put off, but at the same time, its okay to give our bodies a break, take time to rest, get outside, find movement, etc
    • It's important not to take on too much or do too many things

Psychedelics and the Shadow: A Series Exploring the Shadow Side of Psychedelia

Enroll Today!


About Kyle

Kyle’s interest in exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness began when he was 16-years-old when he suffered a traumatic snowboarding accident. Waking up after having a near-death experience changed Kyle’s life. Since then, Kyle has earned his B.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, where he studied the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness by exploring shamanism, plant medicine, Holotropic Breathwork, and the roots/benefits of psychedelic psychotherapy. Kyle has co-taught two college-level courses. One of the courses Kyle created as a capstone project, “Stanislav Grof’s Psychology of Extraordinary Experiences,” and the other one which he co-created, “The History of Psychedelics.”

Kyle completed his M.S. in clinical mental health counseling with an emphasis in somatic psychology. Kyle’s clinical background in mental health consists of working with at-risk teenagers in crisis and with individuals experiencing an early-episode of psychosis. Kyle also facilitates Transpersonal Breathwork workshops.

About Joe

Joe studied philosophy in New Hampshire, where he earned his B.A.. After stumbling upon the work of Stanislav Grof during his undergraduate years, Joe began participating in Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Vermont in 2003. Joe helped facilitate Holotropic and Transpersonal Breathwork workshops while he spent his time in New England. He is now working in the software industry as well as hosting a few podcasts. Joe now coordinates Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork workshops, in Breckenridge, Colorado.

Designed to help the body with cellular energy and cardiovascular endurance.

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Apr 10, 2020
Dena Justice - Using Neuro Linguistic Programming to Create Change in the Unconscious Mind
01:18:18

In this episode, Joe invites previous guest, Dena Justice back on the show to continue the conversation on Neuro Linguistic Programming and non-ordinary states of consciousness.

3 Key Points:

  1. 93% of what we do on a day to day basis, is unconscious. If we can figure out how to work with that 93%, then we can really do some important things.
  2. A lot of times we aren't happy with our behavior, first we have to distinguish between cause and effect. With effect, you blame other people, but when you're a cause in your life, you're taking responsibility for what's happening.
  3. Creating new habits is hard at the conscious level, because it requires conscious thought. NLP focuses on the unconscious.

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Show Notes

Last Episode

  • 93% of what we do on a day to day basis, is unconscious
    • If we can figure out how to work with that 93%, then we can really do some important things
    • Communicating with the unconscious mind is kind of how we communicate with ourselves
  • The previous episode was called Neuro Linguistic Programming and Non-ordinary states of consciousness
  • NLP is all about our nervous system and what is coming in with our 5 senses, then the linguistic part is all about how we communicate what is happening in the body
  • NLP basically creates all of our behavior
    • The more we are able to understand how our unconscious mind works, the better we are able to get the outcomes we actually want

Outcomes

  • A lot of times we aren't happy with our behavior
  • First we have to distinguish between cause and effect
    • When you're at effect, you blame other people, but when you're a cause in your life, you're taking responsibility for what's happening
  • When we can help people be more at cause, they get those desired outcomes, and people start to get to where they want to go in life” - Dena

Perception is Projection

  • Whatever you're believing that which is outside of yourself, it's actually a reflection of you
  • Dena said that she won't go to fitness classes simply because of the language they use
    • Altering your state through movement makes a person very vulnerable and the language can be very suggestive
  • What are we subjecting ourselves to everyday? When we sit down to watch TV or movies, we are in a trance-like state
  • Dena suggests being very careful to be aware of what we let in
  • Getting rid of barriers and obstacles to get where you want in life is the goal for NLP

Prepping the Unconscious Mind

  • Going to the gym is a habit so many people want to have and don't
  • Creating new habits is hard at the conscious level, because it requires conscious thought
    • When we try to make decisions at the conscious level, it gets really difficult
  • All learnings and behaviors, happen at the unconscious level” - Dena
  • “How many times did you have to tie your shoes consciously, before you tied your shoes, unconsciously?” - Dena
  • Most people don't have good language running in the background, and that is a big reason why people are stuck in poor behaviors

Prime Directives of the Unconscious Mind

  • We create gestalts of emotions and experiences
    • A gestalt looks like a pearl necklace, and they are all related to each other
    • All of our experiences of our emotions (ex. anger) all get hooked together like a necklace
    • It's a way that our mind organizes the information
  • When we learn to re-frame intentionally, we can take it as a tool into non-ordinary states of consciousness

Re-framing

  • In psychedelic experiences, we are re-framing the conscious mind, we shake loose of our gestalts
    • We need to learn new tools in order to directly communicate with the unconscious mind” - Dena
  • When we can get to the ‘aha’ moment, we can create change more quickly
  • Limiting beliefs and negative emotions get in the way
    • Getting rid of limiting beliefs causes massive aligned action which leads to massive life change

Tools

  • Our unconscious mind loves following instructions
    • We tell the mind so many don'ts, ‘don't cross the street, don't walk on the grass, etc
    • We need to tell the mind exactly what to do
    • People are really clear about what they don't want, but they aren't always clear on what they do want
  • 7% of what we are saying are just words, the other 93% is is how we say it, our emotions, our infections, are body positions, etc
  • Joe mentions somatic techniques, but that only goes so far, NLP takes it home
  • We learn language, but we don't learn to be effective communicators

Workshop

  • Joe, Kyle and Dena are talking about doing a 5-day breathwork and NLP workshop in Sonoma, CA
    • Breathwork is such an amazing tool for non-ordinary state of consciousness
  • Until more news is released about the retreat/workshop, Dena invites listeners to take her course over at her website, Ecstatic Collective
  • Sign up at psychedelicstoday.com/NLP to be notified of the future workshop

Links

Website


About Dena Justice

As a master manifester, Dena has created a beautiful life for herself. She been financially responsible since age 15 including putting herself through college, two masters degrees and purchasing her own home in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has made over $1M in her life through a fulfilling career as a facilitator, educator, trainer, mentor and coach working with thousands of people across the country. She loved her career, yet hit a point where she felt empty. Near the top of her career ladder, she was a classic case of a high performer and leader hitting burnout. She chose a powerful pivot out of her J-O-B and into her own business. Now, she helps other high performers who have hit burnout and are scared to admit they’ve hit a plateau or a wall. She helps them get the eff out of their own way and move to the next level to increase their impact so they feel fulfilled and inspired again, as well as helping them create more wealth and the relationships they want in their lives. She helps people experience new levels of success, increase/improve focus and performance, abolish FOMO, evolve communication skills, develop transformational leadership skills, create amazing relationships, increase financial abundance and live life on their own terms.

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Apr 07, 2020
Kyle and Joe - Solidarity Fridays - Week One
01:06:58

In today’s Solidarity Friday’s episode with Kyle and Joe, they cover current events on COVID-19, social media narratives, a new world, psycho-pharma, psychedelic VICE articles, movies about acid and more.


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Show Notes

Coronavirus

  • Joe and his girlfriend are recovering from being sick, potentially coronavirus (they weren't allowed to be tested without being hospitalized)
    • Joe said he was really sick in a new and novel way
  • Kyle is located in New Jersey (currently around 19,000 cases, close to 250 deaths)
    • He has a weak immune system, so he is trying to be super careful by staying isolated (he hasn't left the house in weeks besides to go on a walk outside)
  • Joe says this whole thing is really going to impact humanity and life on earth
    • The ecosystem of commerce is fragile and this is a strong way of showing it
  • Kyle says that Drumpf estimated 250,000 deaths in the US
  • Joe says we are going to get through this, and life will go on, but what will that look like?
  • How can the conscious show up as leaders?
  • When we are in a fear state, we don't make rational decisions

Narratives

  • Kyle says all of the psychedelic people that he is connected to on social media are posting so much on 5G right now
  • There are dual narratives, like people dying, but also a lot of info on conspiracies
    • What do we pay attention to, and what is really happening?
    • Joe said that he played in the conspiracy, occult area for a while, and he couldn't find any solid ground
    • In times like this, the conspiracy media ramps up, because people are afraid, and that impairs cognition
  • There is a lot of media saying that COVID-19 is a biological weapon
  • There is a lot of unknowns, and how do we not panic?

Processing All of This

  • We were not evolved for this moment
    • Now, how do we evolve to handle this stuff?
    • How do we build resilience?
  • As ecosystems collapse, some organisms start to mingle with other organisms and then viruses like this can come up, and will pop up more in the future
  • We are in a spiritual emergence-y right now, we need to bring up our shadow and do the work
  • What can I actually do in my life right now? Instead of worrying about everything

A New World

  • 90% of products in the consumer economy right now are completely non-essential
    • We are on a finite planet with finite resources don't mesh with infinite growth
  • Hopefully this is the emergency that we need to re-imagine the future
  • There is a role that the psychedelic community plays in this
    • The psychedelic culture is familiar with sitting with shadow, doing the inner work, and taking a creative approach at alternative systems and reimagining the future
  • Kyle says this feels psychedelic, having new ideas about what the future could look like, what we can offer the future
  • A lot of the things that we wish for are starting to unfold, in some sense, the collective has been wishing for the things that are happening
  • When we take substances, we are upgrading our operating system

Psycho-Pharma

  • MindMed (Mind Medicine) call themselves a leading neuro-pharma company for psychedelic inspired medicines
  • Right now they are working on a compound, essentially an iboga-like drug
  • There is a lot of suffering happening in the world, and whatever tools that can help with the suffering will do
  • There is a roller coaster of the psychedelic experience
    • If every experience was just rainbows and happiness, it would just devalue the human experience

Vice

Shadow Panel

  • Kyle is co-hosting a Shadow Panel with Ido Cohen and takes on a Jung approach to process the shadow
    • They host interviews with doctors and other speakers on the topic
    • They explore a lot of somatics in the shadow
  • It is a donation based course right now, potentially paid in the future

Final Thoughts

  • Joe says we are heavily impacted by COVID-19, a ton of breathwork events all had to be cancelled
    • But we have a ton of online courses and resources available, from integration books, to online guided therapist and clinician courses, to psychedelic online courses, coaching, and more
  • Joe said he had a fun conversation with a film producer (Malibu Road) on the acid scene in the 70’s
    • The film cant be streamed yet, but the trailer is out
    • About Kyle

      Kyle’s interest in exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness began when he was 16-years-old when he suffered a traumatic snowboarding accident. Waking up after having a near-death experience changed Kyle’s life. Since then, Kyle has earned his B.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, where he studied the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness by exploring shamanism, plant medicine, Holotropic Breathwork, and the roots/benefits of psychedelic psychotherapy. Kyle has co-taught two college-level courses. One of the courses Kyle created as a capstone project, “Stanislav Grof’s Psychology of Extraordinary Experiences,” and the other one which he co-created, “The History of Psychedelics.”

      Kyle completed his M.S. in clinical mental health counseling with an emphasis in somatic psychology. Kyle’s clinical background in mental health consists of working with at-risk teenagers in crisis and with individuals experiencing an early-episode of psychosis. Kyle also facilitates Transpersonal Breathwork workshops.

      About Joe

      Joe studied philosophy in New Hampshire, where he earned his B.A.. After stumbling upon the work of Stanislav Grof during his undergraduate years, Joe began participating in Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Vermont in 2003. Joe helped facilitate Holotropic and Transpersonal Breathwork workshops while he spent his time in New England. He is now working in the software industry as well as hosting a few podcasts. Joe now coordinates Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork workshops, in Breckenridge, Colorado.

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Apr 03, 2020
Dylan Beynon - Mindbloom: The Next Chapter in Mental Health and Wellbeing
55:55

In this episode, Kyle sits down with Dylan Beynon, founder of Mindbloom, NYC based mental health and wellbeing platform. In the show they talk about how Mindbloom differs from other centers, paving the way for accessibility and affordability.

3 Key Points:

  1. Mindbloom is a next-generation mental health platform, catered to accessibility and affordability.
  2. They use ketamine tablets, different from lozenges and any other method. The tablets are held in the mouth and then spit out to avoid entering the liver, causing a sedation-like experience.
  3. Mindbloom differentiates themselves from other psychedelic therapy options by using a patient-choice model, to keep it affordable for those who need it. They offer the 4-week therapy model and give patients the option to choose ‘add-ons’ like extra integration. 

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Show Notes

About Dylan

  • Dylan is not a clinician or a doctor, he is an entrepreneur and a psychedelic medicine and therapeutic ketamine patient
    • These medicines have been transformative in his life and he wants to bring their benefits to the public
  • He grew up in a family that suffered greatly from mental illness
    • He lost his mother to addiction
  • He discovered positive psychology
    • When learning about the science of happiness, he realized that he wasn't happy
    • He was in business school and wanted to be a banker and make a ton of money
    • He soon realized that money doesn't buy happiness, and he thought maybe everything he was doing was a lie
  • He was self medicating with psychedelics
  • About 5 years ago he heard about psychedelic therapy
  • About 18 months ago he started working with a clinician doing ketamine therapy
  • He saw that when it's done in a therapeutic context, it can have a profound effect for people to get the most out of it
  • “Recreational vs therapeutic use is a false dichotomy” - Dylan

Mindbloom

  • The goal is to build the next-generation mental health platform
  • Right now they are doing Ketamine therapy
  • They are trying to make it accessible by making it affordable
  • They are trying to bring an elevated client experience, which they do with the space and software

Software Background

  • Voters Friend - a platform to help inform voters on the candidates, to increase access to democracy
  • Mighty - increasing access to social justice
  • Mindbloom - increase access to psychedelic medicines

Differentiation

  • The protocols that Mindbloom are using are capped
  • They are increasing access to the medicines, making it affordable
    • They keep it at $150-$250 a session, where at most Ketamine Therapy centers, it can range from $1000-$2000 a session
  • Dylan says he makes this possible by bringing in technology and software tools to make the sessions for efficient and effective
    • They use patient choice care, where the patient can use their best judgement on how in depth they want their treatment
  • They can ‘add on’ extra integration time onto the therapy session, or choose not to
    • This keeps the price down and accessible for each individual patient if need be
  • Mindbloom is a 4 session program, usually 1-2 months
  • They use the platform to have the client practice using the information in the weeks between each session, so they can practice integration even when not with a therapist or in session

The Program

  • The clinician prescribes a 4 week Ketamine Therapy session for anxiety and depression
    • The clinician will schedule a video interview to learn their symptoms
    • Then they will meet in person and build an integration program if needed
    • Its $1000 for the 4 session program and $600 for the renewal program
  • They use Ketamine tablets (similar to lozenges but faster acting)
    • They're not swallowing it, they spit it out after
    • If they swallow it, it breaks down in the liver into nor-ketaine, and that produces a sedative effect
  • After they spit it out, there is about an hour of music with no vocals
  • After the session, they move to an integration room where they are journaling
  • The protocols at Mindbloom were based on the MAPS protocol
  • They don't have a clinician in the room during the experience, only for after the experience
  • Dylan is looking to expand to other locations
    • A lot of people request couples or group therapies, so they will be taking that into consideration when building new locations

Final Thoughts

  • The more people who are thinking critically about this and putting their intentions into making this more accessible the better
  • There needs to be more gentle conversation around psychedelics and therapy, especially around the people that are still so unaware about this field
    • We should bring sacredness, specialness, and care to the conversation with those who might still be afraid about it

Links

Website


About Dylan Beynon

Dylan is the Founder & CEO of Mindbloom, an NYC-based mental health and wellbeing startup helping people expand their human potential with clinician-prescribed, guided psychedelic medicine experiences. There, he is partnering with clinicians, technologists, researchers, and patients to increase access to science-backed treatments, starting by reducing the cost of ketamine therapy for depression and anxiety by over 65%. Dylan is a 10-year psychedelic medicine patient and 3-time tech entrepreneur with both $100M+ in funding and an exit in his prior startups, which were focused on increasing access to justice and democracy. Dylan graduated from The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania.

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Mar 31, 2020
Dr. Ryan Westrum - The Psychedelics Integration Handbook
01:18:08

In this episode, Kyle sits down with Dr. Ryan Westrum, Psychedelic Integration Therapist. In the show, they talk about topics and teachings from Ryan’s book, The Psychedelic Integration Handbook.

3 Key Points:

  1. The Psychedelics Integration Handbook is designed to bring psychedelic experiences into the flow of your life and maximize their potential for helping you create the life you want to live.
  2. There is an important part in distinguishing integration from aftercare. Aftercare can look as simple as taking care of your body, getting good rest, eating well. You can't integrate without taking care of yourself first.
  3. One of the pillars of integration is PREP (purpose, reflecting on experiences, expectations, potential).


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Show Notes

About Ryan

  • Ryan is a Clinical Psychologist in the Minneapolis area
  • He has been a licensed Marriage Therapist for 15 years
  • He works in the realms of psychedelics and sexuality
  • He has a 14 year old daughter, and likes to take a psychedelic approach to parenting
    • He holds healing circles with mothers and fathers and their child(ren)
    • Psycho-ed and harm reduction are his focus with families
    • This is a group of people that need an honest conversation
  • At a young age he was into Stan Grof and Jungian literature and psychedelic experiences
  • His graduate program was focused on non-ordinary states of consciousness
  • Kyle mentions a good book, The Smell of Rain on Dust: Grief and Praise
  • “As a western civilization, we have really minimized the opportunity for growth, the expansion of consciousness, and to be ourselves.” - Ryan
    • These experiences are powerful, and to come back to a culture that does not support it, is hard
  • The goal is being conscious with your confidence of why you're doing this work

About the Book

  • The Psychedelics Integration Handbook is designed to bring psychedelic experiences into the flow of your life and maximize their potential for helping you create the life you want to live
  • This is not a book with black and white answers but an offering to individual people who want to explore all the possibilities for being alive and seeking wholeness.
  • The Psychedelics Integration Handbook contains historical perspective, maps of consciousness, approaches for integrating body-mind-spirit, and practical suggestions for all stages of psychedelic exploration.

The Psychedelics Integration Handbook

  • The book was written for people to make it their own
  • Its broken into 3 parts, educational, a ‘your turn’ section, and then integration
  • Its about having a compartment, and then playing within the compartment
  • Everyone has unique nuances, integration looks different to everyone
    • Integration practices don't matter if they don't personally mean something to you

Integration

  • The question to help determine the integration needs is, "What does the individual lead with?"
    • It's the mind, body, emotion in the spirit altogether
    • Immediately after a psychedelic experience, some want to talk about it, others embody it
    • Do they lead with thoughts or emotions?
  • There is a part in the book: The difference between integration and aftercare
    • How do we distinguish between self care and integration?
    • Is my body rested? Am I comfortable? Are my needs taken care of?
    • Aftercare is grounding
    • “If you're not taking care of your body, you won't be able to integrate” - Ryan
    • It might not be as complex as it needs to be, its as simple as taking care of yourself
    • An important part of aftercare, is asking yourself when it is okay to practice again
  • Ryan was mentored by James Fadiman, and he believed in taking big doses every 6 months
  • One of the pillars is PREP (purpose, reflecting on experiences, expectations, potential)
  • Ryan says he is not the gatekeeper
  • Controlling willpower is a huge step in integration
    • Some people want to just take psychedelics, but not write, or do yoga, or do any other mindful activity

Safety

  • Dose, set and setting are the obvious
    • It's like a goldrush, some just want to jump in blindly
    • You have to understand what safety means to you
  • Ryan thinks we aren't talking enough about the recreational use
    • He is excited about all of the conversation on therapeutic use, but he thinks we are ignoring recreational use
    • He wants to see ritual and reverence in the recreational community
  • Preparation is so important
  • Kyle says that a lot of times after an experience he has all of these ideas for how to live his life, and he tries to practice them, but sometimes he finds himself slipping into old patterns of behavior
    • Ryan says he believes there is still movement and progress, be gentle with yourself

Links

Healing Souls LLC

Psychedelic Integration

About Ryan

Dr. Ryan Westrum, PhD, LMFT, is an internationally recognized psychedelic integration expert. For more than 15 years, his primary focus has been working with individuals and groups facilitating experiential therapy and integrating psychedelic journeys into healing and personal transformation. Ryan speaks on a myriad of topics and leads experiential groups, like dreamwork integration therapy and psychedelic integration groups.

 

 

 

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Mar 24, 2020
Jessica DiRuzza - Understanding the Psychedelic Experience with Astrology
01:18:34

In this episode, Kyle interviews Jessica DiRuzza, Psychotherapist, Astrologer and Teacher. In the show they talk about how astrology can be used as a tool and framework for navigating and understanding psychedelic experiences.

3 Key Points:

  1. Astrology can be used as an integrative tool for psychedelic and other exceptional experiences.
  2. The planets are emitting some type of force that are letting us behave a certain way. Astrology is the one thing we have agreed upon across millennia and era.
  3. A Saturn Return transit can be a difficult but transformative time in one's life. This transit happens around age 28-31. During this time, we face crises in our life as we take on greater responsibility. It can feel like death and a rebirth. It can correlate to Grof's Perinatal Birth Matrix II (“No Exit” and "Cosmic Engulfment"). 


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Show Notes

About Jessica

  • She is a Psychotherapist
  • She teaches and practices Astrology
  • She uses Astrology to help put meaning and understanding to what happens in visionary states
  • She received her bachelors at CIIS and studied and taught with Stan Grof and Richard Tarnes in the Philosophy, Cosmology and Consciousness Program
  • Since the 70’s, Stan Grof was following his transits and all the transits of his clients
    • Richard Tarnas and Stan Grof studied astrology as a diagnostic tool for those who would do psychedelics
    • They studied transit astrology
    • By looking at these transits, what they found were archetypal similarities
    • “Our solar system is an extension of our ecosystem here on earth.” - Jessica\
  • “For millennia, the one thing that human beings have agreed upon across cultures and eras, are the meaning of the planets” - Jessica
  • Astrology is the original science

Free Will vs. Determinism

  • The planets are emitting some type of force that are letting us behave a certain way
  • They are reflective, what is happening in the sky is indicative of what's happening here
  • Astrology is like a clock, a clock does not make it be a certain time, it just helps us tell the time

Interest in Astrology

  • Psychedelics brought Jessica to Astrology
  • Jessica went to her first Burning Man at 20 years old
    • She received an astrology reading there and said it broke her open
  • She went to CA to see the reader that gave her the initial reading
    • She did a high dose LSD session
    • She re-lived her birth experience, and gave birth to her new self
  • The person who gave her the reading was teaching with Stan Grof and Richard Tarnas at CIIS
  • She dropped out of college and moved to attend CIIS
    • She was in a Uranus conjunct Ascendant transit
  • Through these experiences she uprooted her entire life

Astrology Lingo

  • Sun represents our sense of self, our identity in the world, egoic consciousness
  • Moon represents our relational matrix, our early childhood experiences, our emotions and experiences, and a deep sense of belonging
  • Rising represents who we are from moment to moment, how we initially meet existence
  • Zodiac means belt of life
  • Each aspect carries a different quality
    • Conjunct means new moon, representing a new beginning
    • A full moon represents when the sun is opposite than the moon, a blossoming or fruition. 
  • Astrology is a language, the language of the stars
    • There are so many ways to speak this language, and so many schools of thought
    • What really matters is the cosmology that goes behind the description
  • “Both astrology and psychedelics are a tools for self reflection, that hopefully we are using to become more kind and more caring” - Jessica
  • “Astrology provides a world view or a cosmology to hold what happens in those visionary states, it's a grounding place to integrate and make meaning of what's happening” - Jessica

Saturn Return

  • Saturn return happens from age 28-31
  • During our Saturn Return, we face crises in our life and take on greater responsibility
  • It can feel like a death, but also like a birth
    • “The greater the death, the greater the rebirth” - Jessica
  • The 4 bpms correspond to the four outer planets
  • It's not just in entheogenic spaces that this is applicable
  • “Working with the resistance consciously, actually helps us move into what the divine or the universe wants us to step into our life, karmically, what we are here to do” - Jessica

Astrology and Psychedelics

  • Kyle asks about using astrology to pick a time of when to do psychedelics
    • Jessica responds saying that if you have a strong calling to do so for healing and balance, and you have all the components for proper integration, then it's a good time
    • Then, astrology can be used to help find themes and help dissect the experience
  • Your Saturn transits contain a difference component in each person
    • The sense of responsibility grows in you
    • “My deepest calling in this life is to bring Astrology and Psychology together in one unified field” - Jessica

Final Thoughts

  • Jessica is so proud of the honest integrity that people are bringing to this work
  • She send best wishes in the great reckoning, and the great becoming

Links

Website


About Jessica

Jessica is a licensed psychotherapist, astrologer, and teacher. Her life is guided by a passion for engaging with people, understanding relationships, and staying connected to the larger world around us. This passion and curiosity led her into the healing profession as a counselor in 2007. For over a decade she has worked collaboratively with individuals, couples, and groups on their transformative journeys. Helping people on their path of exploration and healing is the privilege of a lifetime. Jessica received her Master’s in Counseling Psychology with an emphasis in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute. She completed her undergraduate degree at California Institute of Integral Studies, where she studied and taught archetypal astrology and transpersonal psychology. Her greatest joy is working in sacred and revolutionary ways with people in psychotherapy, teaching, and astrological consultations. She also shares her work through podcasts and writing on her site.

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Mar 17, 2020
Rob Heffernan - Psychedelic Liberty Summit: Religion and Plant Medicines
01:25:06

In this episode, Kyle sits down with Rob Heffernan, an independent researcher and activist. In the show, they talk about churches, Ayahuasca, accessibility and the Psychedelic Liberty Summit by the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines. Rob is also part of Chacruna’s Council for the Protection of Sacred Plants

The Council for the Protection of Sacred plants is "an initiative of the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines that endeavors to advocate for the legality of sacred plant medicines among indigenous peoples and non-indigenous communities, encourage legal harm reduction practices that protect those who use them, educate about conservation of plant species, document relevant legal and social issues, and consult on legal cases including possible litigation. " 

3 Key Points:

  1. The Psychedelic Liberty Summit is a gathering on legal, cultural, and political issues around the emerging psychedelic renaissance.
  2. Accessibility is not just about whether or not people can afford psychedelic therapy, people cant even afford regular therapy, the whole healthcare model is an issue.
  3. A lot of churches get a bad name, but really most churches are built around community. Psychedelics can help revitalize churches.

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Show Notes

 

About Rob

  • Rob is a member of the Chacruna Council for protection of sacred plants
  • He is an integrative sound and music practitioner
  • He is involved in the Santo Daime
  • He has been drinking Ayahuasca for over 20 years
  • He began to ponder and ask a lot of questions about involvement with medicine communities

Psychedelic Liberty Summit

  • Rob will be hosting a talk on religious exemptions and more
  • There will be speakers of all different initiatives, from decriminalization to indigenous relations
  • There are a lot of investors interested in the psilocybin market
  • The issue is complex because there is this ongoing cultural history of the US and other countries exploiting those cultures and removing resources (oil, medicines, etc)

Ayahuasca

  • The first time Rob drank Ayahuasca was back in 2000, where there weren't Ayahuasca retreats going on then
    • People who lived in the area were not familiar with Ayahuasca use
    • People started coming from around the world to use Ayahuasca
    • There are feedback loops between the cities and the forests
  • People typically think integration is what happens afterwards, but really it is also the sacrifice from the start, the preparation, such as a dieta
  • We need to honor what we have learned from the indigenous, and give back
  • Traditional dietas don't involve actually drinking the Ayahuasca, the culture has come a long way

Accessibility

  • While these medicines are relatively safe, you can get in trouble using these substances recreationally, there is a role for the therapeutic support
  • It's not just about whether or not people can afford psychedelic therapy, people cant even afford regular therapy, the whole healthcare model is an issue

Santo Daime

  • It was founded in the 1930’s in Brazil
  • The reason that the Santo Daime looks more white in the USA is due to the segregation
  • There are all sorts of ways that the Santo Daime may look
    • When Rob first got involved in drinking Ayahuasca, he wasn't sure that he wanted to get involved in the Santo Daime, but he said the container was so strong
    • There are hymns sung, and it's very structured
    • It allows you to really go deep
    • Sometimes it can look like drumming, dancing, and fire, but there is also a style of sitting in silence
  • There is a profound ethical foundation which is really important
    • All of the elements make for a really important container
  • In the traditional form, you do not touch anyone, unless there is a certain circumstance, and a prior consensual agreement, and waivers signed, etc
    • There have been issues of sexual abuse in the psychedelic realm, the Santo Daime takes many precautions against this

Churches

  • There are legal churches in the US through the Daime and the UDV (União do Vegetal)
  • The Daime has 5 churches that are explicitly legal
    • The government has decided not to pursue or prosecute Ayahuasca for those other churches
  • From Shock to Awe
  • Someone tragically died at the Soul Quest Church, but it wasn't related to ayahuasca
  • There are a lot of people that claim to be a part of a Native American church that are not
    • A lot of people reach out to Chacruna on how to become a part of the Native American Church to hold ceremonies, and it's not easy, you almost have to already be a part of it, instead of just joining
  • Some people don't like the word church, but it originates from the words ‘congregation’ and ‘assembly’
  • The problem is the controlled substances act, that these things are illegal in the first place” - Rob
  • "The experience in all those settings is about community. The goal isn't to have spiritual experiences, its to have a spiritual life” - Rob
  • Psychedelics and entheogens could be central to creating a new hub
  • It is possible to create psychedelic churches outside of the Santo Daime
  • The Ayahuasca tradition really uses the potential of group process
  • “How individual is the psychedelic experience, where you need some one-on-one work?” - Kyle

Psychedelic Liberty Summit

  • April 25-26 in San Francisco
  • Discount Code: PsychedelicsToday for 10% off at checkout

Links

Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicine

Psychedelic Liberty Summit 

 


About Rob Heffernan

Rob Heffernan has been involved in the Peruvian curandero tradition and the Santo Daime for the last 16 years. He was a member and chairman of the North American Santo Daime Legal Committee for a number of years. He has been engaged in independent research and active in ad hoc groups promoting legal clarity and ethical integrity in the Ayahuasca Community. He is also a certified Integrative Sound and Music Practitioner; Shamanic Breath Work Facilitator; and a long time student and practitioner of Buddhist Dhamma. He has a BA in Communications and Social Studies from Fordham University, and works in the AV/IT communication industry.

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Mar 10, 2020
Alicia Danforth PhD - ICPR 2020: Ethical Challenges in Psychedelic Medicine
01:26:57

In this episode, Joe interviews Clinical Psychologist, Alicia Danforth. In the show, they cover topics including how to get involved in the space, consent, research, MDMA, Autism and more.

3 Key Points:

  1. Alicia Danforth is a Clinical Psychologist who will be having a talk on Ethical Challenges in Psychedelic Medicine at the ICPR Conference in the Netherlands, April 2020.
  2. There is a possibility for MDMA to have a non-responder effect. No one has done research dedicated to why some people don't react at all to MDMA.
  3. Psychedelic science is very hard to talk about. We have the language of science that studies the psychopharmacological effects of drugs but no language that holds the effects of an altered state of consciousness yet.

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Show Notes

About Alicia

  • Her path to her current place is such a random road that led her to where she is
  • She was going to burning man and getting into harm reduction when she realized the untapped value of psychedelics, its where her interest began
  • She began volunteering, doing administrative work for a doctor
    • She was offered to be a study coordinator
  • She got introduced to the power of psilocybin as a medicine, for dying cancer patients
    • The patients had a prognosis from 6 months to a year
    • To see how this state of consciousness helped people transition to the end of life so smoothly, that is what inspired her
  • 5 months after she started working on the study, she got a cancer diagnosis

Getting Involved in the Space

  • Alicia would always get people approaching her about how to get in the field and she tells them “what field?”
  • Her Power Point making skills, are what technically got her involved in this field
  • “You never know what skill may be needed in this field” - Alicia
  • Alicia encourages people to look into their own collection of skills, and dig deep into that, find your niche, and then use that to contribute to the movement
    • Clinical therapists and psychologists are not the only people in this field
      We need accountants, marketers, etc

Consent

  • People start to get really religious around this field
  • Joe mentions a story where someone performed non-consensual reiki

Current Research

  • She is currently looking at why psychedelics appeal to people who typically like to abuse power
  • She did a talk at burning man about ‘coming down from the psychedelic power trip’
  • She tries to cite as many references and research as possible
  • Her talk at ICPR is going to be the very professional, version of that talk
  • Why are individuals who seek to abuse these tools so irresistibly drawn to psychedelics?
  • “If someone gets abused, and people say don't come out about it because it's not good for the movement, then what kind of movement is that?” - Joe

Empathogens

  • MDMA is known as an Empathogen
  • Can empathogens help people who are not empathetic, become empathetic?
  • Cohen’s D is the measure of effect size
    • Big pharma uses this all the time, to determine the effects of one drug compared to another
    • The Cohen’s D is how large that difference is

Non-response MDMA

  • There is a known, non-responder effect with MDMA
  • There was a few double-blind sessions, where the patient received MDMA, and they didn't react, their vitals didn't change
    • At the end,  it was revealed that they truly received MDMA, and then even to be sure, they would do a blood test, and it showed up in the blood
  • No one has done research dedicated to why some people don't react at all to MDMA
  • It's probably common, that for people who are relying on MDMA to work as their last resort option and try it and not feel anything at all, to end their life afterward

Media and Support

  • It's the most difficult thing in dealing with the media
    • When you are entirely dependent on funding, if you don't talk about what you're doing, then you can't get funding at all
  • There is a crisis in science on the replicability on these studies
    • Joe says its cool to have these studies replicated outside of the US
  • Psychedelic science is very hard to talk about due to the subjective nature of the psychedelic experience. We have the language of science that studies the psychopharmacological effects of drugs. There is no language that holds the effects of an altered state of consciousness yet.” - Alicia
  • The rapport that the patient and facilitator have, and the effect of that relationship, is a variable

Links

Website


About Alicia Danforth

Alicia received her doctorate in clinical psychology from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in Palo Alto in 2013. Since 2006, she has worked in clinical research at the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center on clinical studies for adults with anxiety related to advanced-stage cancer and with autistic adults who experience social anxiety. She is currently a lead clinician and supervisor for a clinical trial at UCSF for psychological distress in long-term survivors of HIV/AIDS. She is also certified in Trauma-Focused CBT and Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy.  

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Mar 03, 2020
Mike Margolies - Psychedelic Seminars: the Benefits, Risks, and Complexities of Psychedelics
01:21:06

In this episode, Kyle and Joe interview Mike Margolies of Psychedelic Seminars. In the show, they cover topics including guests and conversations from the Psychedelic Seminars, the decriminalization of all drugs, and the importance of allowing psychedelic use to be a part of training therapists for psychedelic therapy.

3 Key Points:

  1. Psychedelic Seminars is an educational conversation series deepening awareness of the benefits, risks, and complexities of psychedelics.
  2. There are large topics of decriminalizing psilocybin or the movements for ‘decriminalize nature’, but the conversation on decriminalization of all drugs is rare, which is what's really important.
  3. Some companies (MAPS for example) allow the option to use MDMA as a part of their therapist training program while other companies who are training therapists for psilocybin therapy, don't have the option to use it. This leaves the question, "Should the psychedelic experience be part of the psychedelic therapy training?" 

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Show Notes

About Mike

  • Mike used to work as a chemical engineer in corporate America, and then he did Ayahuasca
    • When he returned, he thought to himself about what he wanted to do with the rest of his life
    • He took a look at the pulse of the country and looked at what it needed
    • There wasn't anyone organized locally in Baltimore, so he started Psychedelic Seminars
  • Now he is living in the Bay Area, doing events locally
  • He has been interviewing people and putting the videos out globally

Psychedelic Seminars

  • They will be having some Indigenous people at the seminar
    • It's hard to get Indigenous people to seminars and conferences, because, what's in it for them?
  • The goal is to ramp up the project and do a seminar every month, where it usually takes place every few months
    • They are doing it all in a home, privately
    • The whole project is donation dependent, they are doing it all for free
    • You can support the mission here
  • After Michael Pollan, they did one with Jim Fadiman
  • He did another with Ayelet Waldman
    • The talks were on microdosing and the unknowns of microdosing
    • Just because there is no real harms taking a large dose of LSD, doesn't mean there aren't any harms taking a low (micro) dose of LSD frequently
    • Mike thinks that the term Jim Fadiman uses is its ‘sub-perceptual’, in that you have a noticeable effect on the mood, but no other way of noticing it

Decriminalization

  • Drug Policy tends to stay in the realm of psychedelics only
    • There are large topics of decriminalizing psilocybin or the movements for ‘decriminalize nature’, but no one likes to talk about the decriminalization of all drugs, which is what's really important
    • Poppy is not considered in decriminalize nature, which is selective nature decriminalization
  • It's not a real decriminalization, it's just a low priority for law enforcement
  • He’s been asking in his conversations, opinions on decriminalizing all drugs
  • Different drugs have different risk profiles
  • Just because you're not using criminal justice as your mechanism for reducing risks of drugs, doesn't mean you do nothing. The last thing we want to do is add criminalization to those who are already suffering, this is why we should decriminalize all drugs” - Mike
  • Laws should be written in terms of what are you not allowed to do, not what you're allowed to do
    • He is allowed to walk down the sidewalk, but not punch someone he walks past, but the law shouldn't be to get a license for walking down the street so long as you don't punch someone
  • The communities that are marginalized continue to be marginalized by the drug war

Psychedelic Therapy and Experience with Use

  • With MAPS, there is an option to do MDMA as a part of the training
  • With psilocybin, at least with Compass Pathways, there is not an option to use psilocybin. Mike says that's a huge issue
  • When you scale treatment, there is the risk of losing the quality of care
    • “We aren't going to solve the problems of our future by mass distributing psychedelics” - Mike
  • The fact that we have such mass amounts of widespread depression, means that we have a deeply ingrained systemic issue at hand
    • Psychedelics treat the symptoms, but we still need to fix the underlying cause
    • “If you are distributing psychedelics, but still exacerbating the same underlying issues, you now have the problem and solution in the same hefty package” - Mike
  • “Psychedelic experience is intrinsically something spiritual. How can you guide someone in spiritual practice if you haven't experienced it yourself?” - Mike
  • “Inducing a state intentionally, and guiding someone through a process, its completely unethical to guide someone through a spiritual process that you haven't been through yourself.” - Mike

New Economy

  • Burning man is not a barter economy, it's a gift economy, where things are given without an expectation of receiving something in return
    • We are far from that economy
  • What if we had a world where instead of trying to extract value, we were trying to create value?

Links

Psychedelic Seminars Website

Psychedelic Seminars Patreon


About Mike Margolies

Since 2015, Mark has worked full-time in the psychedelic community, starting and contributing to a number of projects as an event and media producer, connector, and advisor. He is the Founder of Psychedelic Seminars, an educational conversation series deepening awareness of the benefits, risks, and complexities of psychedelics. On the PsychSems stage, he has interviewed a range of leaders including bestselling author Michael Pollan, Dr. James Fadiman and Ayelet Waldman on microdosing, and therapeutic ketamine expert Dr. Raquel Bennett. He started the project in 2015 after returning to his home city of Baltimore to build community for open and honest conversations about psychedelics. The project now operates primarily out of the San Francisco Bay Area and livestreams globally. Through his psychedelic community work in Baltimore, he seeded the Baltimore Psychedelic Society. He has sparked and mentored similar Psychedelic Societies around the world from Washington DC to San Francisco to Portugal. He helped start the Global Psychedelic Network to connect them.

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Feb 25, 2020
Elizabeth Nielson and Ingmar Gorman - The Importance of Psychedelic Integration Training for Therapists
01:18:34

In this Episode, Kyle sits down with Elizabeth Nielson and Ingmar Gorman, Co-founders of Fluence, Training in Psychedelic Integration. They are both therapists on the MAPS clinical trial for MDMA Assisted Psychotherapy for PTSD.

3 Key Points:

  1. Elizabeth and Ingmar are co-founders of Fluence, an online Psychedelic Integration Training program.
  2. If psychedelic treatments become available more widely, the fear is that therapists won't be as educated on how to handle their patient interactions based on the behavior of each psychedelic. Psychedelic Integration Therapy Training is so important.
  3. There are 3 phases to the MDMA for PTSD clinical trial. Phase 1 would be pre-clinical data about the chemistry of a drug, Phase 2 is where you begin to test your treatment in a patient population, and Phase 3 is where you get the data to demonstrate that the treatment is superior to a placebo and other treatments in general.

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Show Notes

About Ingmar

  • Ingmar is a previous guest of the show
  • He is a private Investigator for the MAPS MDMA trial
  • He is a therapist and the Co-founder of Fluence

About Elizabeth

  • Elizabeth is a Clinical Psychologist
  • She has a long history in working with clinical trials as a therapist
  • She is part of the psychedelic education and continuing care program
  • She does a lot of supervision and training for therapists

The Trial

  • The approval of expanded access by the FDA includes 50 people in total
  • They are near the end of MAP 1 (out of MAP 1 and MAP 2)
    • When they transition into MAP 2, it will be a little more refined
    • MAP 2 is different participants than MAP 1
  • There are 3 phases
    • Phase 1 would be pre-clinical data about chemistry of a drug and how it metabolises, if its poisonous, etc
    • Phase 2 is where you begin to test your treatment in a patient population
    • Phase 3 is where you get the data to demonstrate that the treatment is superior to a placebo and other treatments in general
    • They are done as a double-blind trial, both the therapist and patient don't know if the patient is receiving the treatment or now

Take-aways

  • There is a lot of information that has to be shared effectively
  • The therapists are very much in the lives of the participants on top of just the MDMA
  • Instead of learning from the trials of what to do on a practical level, its about inspiring them to bring this as an actual treatment for people
  • The multiple ways that PTSD can manifest and look like, and the may ways that MDMA can look like when administered, have some commonalities
    • The deepening, the broadening, the way they communicate, can all be the same
  • Ingmar holds the belief in the inner healing intelligence of all people
    • One of the first things he does when he begins with a new patient, he says that this is something he really believes in, and his role as a therapist to help them in their own healing process and mechanism
  • What Elizabeth wanted to learn, know and practice while she was going through school, isn't what she she thought it was until she found it
    • She says this work really requires them to trust people's minds and experiences
    • There is something that they tell their patients, “Don't get ahead of the medicine” - Elizabeth
  • There is an interesting paradox between not knowing and following intuition, to having an actual method and following that
    • There is a sweet spot between following a script to following your intuition as a therapist
    • You want to trust that inner healer process of the patient, but also need to know when to intervene (usually from a safety standpoint)

Fluence

  • 3 days after Horizons, Elizabeth was at home with a cold, and talked to Ingmar that morning curious for a name for the project
  • Fluence means, magical or mystical power or source of power
    • It can also refer to the density of particles of energy
  • They teach about harm reduction and integration with their patients in their practice
    • They aren't teaching protocols in the workshops, they just think the harm reduction is important
  • The last part of integration is mindfulness
  • Ingmar’s biggest influence are his clients and patients, he is so inspired by them
    • A large piece of the motivation for creating Fluence is from patients just looking for someone to talk about their experience with

The Why

  • A mother whose teenage daughter with depression, reached out to Ingmar with trouble trying to treat her depression
    • The family decided it would be a good idea to use Ketamine therapy, which was successful
    • She was doing so well, so well that she then went to a therapist to integrate it
    • The therapist that she went to then instead of responding positively, decided to fire the teen for further therapy, and report the parents to child care services for providing ketamine therapy
    • Ingmar says their position is not that everyone needs psychedelic integration therapy, its specifically for those that don't feel supported by family or community, and it gives them a professional service as an option
  • "Psychedelics are not 10 years of change in one night, they are 10 years of insight in one night. integration is so important." - Elizabeth
  • The goal is to support people in making a change that feels safe and right for them
  • If the treatments become available more widely, the fear is that therapists won't be as educated on how to handle their patient interactions based on the behavior of each psychedelic
    • Mental health practitioners can be a great source for working through those experiences

Menla Training

  • Menla Training
  • They could really take their time with the process and training
  • The trainings that they had gone to has made their own Fluence courses better
  • In 2019 they had 5 of the trainings for clinicians, and the trainings will be better and better as they go

Ketamine Infusion Therapy

  • The experience is not dose dependent
  • The purpose of the workshop is to educate both therapists and doctors about what can happen in psychotherapy

Links

Fluence

Psychedelics 101 and 102 Workshop at ICPR 2020


About Elizabeth

Dr. El