Psychedelics Today

Psychedelics Today is the planetary leader in psychedelic education, media, and advocacy. Covering up-to-the-minute developments and diving deep into crucial topics bridging the scientific, academic, philosophical, societal, and cultural, Psychedelics Today is leading the discussion in this rapidly evolving ecosystem.
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Apr 28, 2017

Psychedelic Science 17 in Review

We discuss our recent trip to MAPS's Psychedelic Science 2017. It was incredibly fun and we loved being able to connect with so many with this shared interest. Many attendees are actively working to progress the case of psychedelic substances. This was the largest psychedelic conference ever in recorded history attended by over 3000 people from 42 countries. There were discussions around ayahuasca, peyote, DMT, salvia, MDMA and many other substances. Some of the most interesting discussions were around ibogaine treating people with addiction. Turns out there are far more things that can be treated with ibogaine than simply opiate addiction. I was very excited to discuss drug testing and harm reduction with the people from DanceSafe. We were also able to check out some really interesting technology - lights and music - that triggered some of the most intense visuals of my life.  Illuminated SF put that demonstration together. It is highly recommend. The experience of Psychedelic Science 17 was so incredible and encouraging that I cannot wait to go to the next one. Being around the movement was truly humbling and gratifying. Connecting with people from as far as Brussels, Poland and Hong Kong gave extra context to how far and wide this movement is spreading and that there is real depth in the movement. We hope you enjoy the episode. If you want to connect with us please feel free to reach out using the contact page. If you want to stay in touch with us please join our mailing list and we will send some interesting links to you on a semi regular basis.

Links MAPS made available a tremendous amount of the talks for free on youtube. You should spend some time digging through the talks for things you may find very interesting.
Apr 20, 2017
Download Peter is a psychedelic philosopher focusing on panpsychism, psychedelics, Whitehead, Nietzsche and some other heavy weights. We discuss Peter's psychedelic philosophy and influences from psychedelic liberty cap mushrooms found in a field in England, his influence on the famous comic author Warren Ellis, his essay Neo-Nihilism, transhumanism and much more. We really look forward to having Peter on the show again in the future!

Show Notes/links

Whitehead Quotes

‘The terms morality, logic, religion, art, have each of them been claimed as exhausting the whole meaning of importance. Each of them denotes a subordinate species. But the genus stretches beyond any finite group of species.’ (MT) ‘Philosophy is an attempt to express the infinity of the universe in terms of the limitations of language.’ (Autobiog.) ‘The doctrines which best repay critical examination are those which for the longest period have remained unquestioned.’ (MT) ‘[I]n the development of intelligence there is a great principle which is often forgotten. In order to acquire learning, we must first shake ourselves free of it. We must grasp the topic in the rough, before we smooth it out and shape it.’ (MT) More on Peter's site here 

Peter's Social Media

Instagram Twitter Facebook

Warren Ellis

The Brink

About Peter

Peter Sjöstedt-H is an Anglo-Scandinavian philosopher who specialises in the thought of Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, and Whitehead within the fields of Philosophy of Mind and Metaphysics – especially with regard to panpsychism and altered states of sentience. Peter received a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and a Master’s degree in Continental Philosophy from the University of Warwick, where he was awarded a first-class distinction for his dissertation on Kant and Schelling in relation to ‘intellectual intuition’. He subsequently became a Philosophy Lecturer in London for six years but is now engaged in his PhD at Exeter University where he also teaches philosophy modules and writing skills. Peter is the author of Noumenautics and an inspiration behind the new inhuman philosopher Marvel Superhero, Karnak. In the words of futurist, philosopher and pop star Alexander Bard: ‘One of our favourite contemporary philosophers, Peter Sjöstedt-H…think a psychedelic Nietzsche’.
Apr 12, 2017
Download Kyle and Joe recently chatted with a second therapist who works underground. Trained as a traditional therapist, this therapist integrates MDMA work into her practice with selective clients. She has been mentored by a teacher who has done this work for a very long period of time. She has a community of therapists around her providing support. MDMA is not a typical psychedelic drug but it is the focus of most of MAPS's efforts in the Psychedelic Psychotherapy world. Psychedelic therapy is THE frontier of psychology. Therapists like Selina are on the vanguard of these therapies. By working underground they have great risks (legal) and advantages (huge amounts of healing for their patients). Why are we waiting? We are in a mental health crisis, far too many people are suffering and committing suicide. If one compares this to any recent "outbreak" the numbers certainly make sense to fast track MDMA as a viable therapy for PTSD and other disorders. We want to keep interviewing people doing underground work, so please send them our way for interviews. We are going to be able to provide anonymity for those that want it, so feel free to ask about this if you want it. Enjoy!!

MDMA Therapist - Show Notes

We will not provide any information about this therapist. Please do not email/contact us about therapy sessions or gaining information about the therapist. These interviews are anonymous and private. We can provide general advice. We will not provide any information about this or other anonymous guests of the show. Thanks for understanding! 
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Mar 28, 2017
Download Kevin is a science writer, graduate student researcher and aspiring clinician, harm reduction educator and substance use recovery advocate. Kyle and Joe talk to him about loads of topics including early Iboga therapies, an early Boston Ibogaine Conference, his approach to journalism and his future aspirations to do future clinical work and research. Kevin's website

Kevin's writing

Staff Writer (Fall 2012–Spring 2013) - NuScience Magazine, Northeastern University

Autism 20-25 mg Psilocybin 200 mcg - LSD A Conversation Between Gary Fisher and Myron Stolaroff (2004) - Psychedelic Salon 2009 Ibogaine Conference Northeastern University, Boston, Mass. Alicia Danforth Ph.D -Dissertation National Geographic - Breakthrough season 2

About Kevin:

Kevin graduated from Northeastern University in 2013 with a degree in neuroscience. As an undergraduate he completed an internship as a research assistant at Harvard Medical School working on the Phase 2 dose-response study investigating the therapeutic potential of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treatment of cancer related anxiety. Kevin was also one of the founders of the Northeastern chapter of Students for Sensible Drug Policy, and in 2009 the group hosted and co-sponsored the Boston Ibogaine Forum. He now lives in New York City where he is enrolled in a clinical psychology graduate program at The New School for Social Research and is pursuing a doctoral degree. Kevin has worked part-time for the Drug Policy Alliance, and also works as a writer covering topics related to psychedelic therapy, addiction, and mental health advocacy. His recent contributions include: New Scientist,,, Reality Sandwich, and
Mar 22, 2017
Download Psymposia's MC and Host, Lex Pelger, joins us again on Psychedelics Today to talk about Psymposia's upcoming Blue Dot Tour. Lex also talks about his graphic novel about cannabis, the endocannabinoid system, and the War on Weed.
What is the Blue Dot Tour?

The Blue-Dot Tour is our two-month open-mic Psychedelic Stories road trip across the continent starting on the way to the Psymposia Stage Psychedelic Science 2017 in Oakland.

Our goal is to hit blue cities in red states that serve as such pressure cookers of activism, education, and art. But also blue cities in blue states, red towns in red states, purple villages in green states, and anywhere we can find a host from Mexico to Canada.

We’ll also be screening Robert Barnhart's excellent film 'A New Understanding - the Science of Psilocybin.'

Blue Dot Tour Dates (Subject to Change)
For the most up-to-date schedule check out the schedule at 
4/21-23 Psychedelic Science 4/26 Los Angeles, CA 4/27 San Diego, CA Don't see your city on the tour schedule? Reach out to Psymposia to host them in your town/city for an event:
Show Notes/Links

About Lex Pelger:
Lex is Host of Psymposia. He's also a drug writer and scientist based in Brooklyn. His current project, Anandamide or: the Cannabinoid a graphic novel about cannabis (based on Moby Dick), illustrates the beauties of the endocannabinoid system (the Whale), the brutalities of the racist War on Weed (Ahab), and the staggering benefits of medical marijuana to ease the aging of our grandparents

He graduated from Boston University with a BS in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Mar 14, 2017
Download In this episode, Joe and Kyle chat with Ed Liu of the podcast, Psychedelic Milk. It has been great to connect with other folks that host podcasts, and are doing whatever they can to spread the message about psychedelics and the psychedelic movement. We really enjoyed talking with Ed and appreciated his honesty as well as the conversations he is bringing to the field.
Show Notes is an independent media collective that takes a deeper look into the world of psychedelics through interviews and discussions. Our mission is to bring more awareness and understanding to alternative medicine and different ways of thinking to our our audiences through young and exciting ways. Psychedelic Milk also aims to investigate old and new consciousness opening technologies to see what roles they can play in our modern world. We believe psychedelic technologies are not just limited to plant medicines, but can be accessed through meditation, movement, knowledge, and many more. If you like the podcast, leave us a review on iTunes! (will help us tremendously)
About Ed Liu
Ed Liu is a podcast host and a music producer - previously charted on the Beatport Top 100. He is currently the host of the Psychedelic Milk podcast, a long form conversational interview with interesting and influential guests from all over the world to discuss topics of consciousness, psychedelics, and new emerging technologies.  
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Feb 24, 2017


Kyle and Joe speak with, Paul Austin, psychedelic educator, founder of The Third Wave and Psychedelia. Paul is a super fun guy to talk to. He tours both in the US and internationally to speak about microdosing. Microdosing is becoming incredibly popular and seems to be making psychedelics more popular in the mainstream. Microdosing can help with creativity, therapy and many other things without any of the burden of a "full" dose.

What is the psychedelic Third Wave? Paul describes it as:Psychedelia Podcast - The Third Wave - Psychedelic

A new era of psychedelic use. It is an era of psychedelic use defined by practical, measured use for specific purposes. It is an era, not for ‘dropping-out’ of society, but for integrating psychedelics into the mainstream. It is an era, not to fear psychedelics for their possible negative repercussions, but to embrace psychedelics for their tremendous upside.

Some insight from DR. JAMES FADIMAN
“For some people, it is helpful to identify your goals. Your goals may be spiritual: to have direct experience with aspects of your tradition or another tradition, to transcend prior beliefs, even to transcend belief itself. You may hope to have what is called a “unity experience,” in which there is no separation between your identity and all else. Your goals may be social: to improve relationships with your spouse, children, siblings, parents, colleagues, friends, and spiritual and secular institutions. Your goals may be psychological: to find insight into neurotic patterns, phobias, or unresolved anger or grief.”

We get into some great psychedelic topics such as:

About Paul Austin:

As an entrepreneur and avid psychedelic explorer, Paul believes in the power of rational dialogue and community engagement in stripping Paul Austin - Psychedelic Educator away the stigma around psychedelic use.

He understands the power of responsible psychedelic use in aiding psycho-spiritual development, and believes in sharing this message with others.

When not ruminating on his next psychedelic project, Paul enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time outside.

Feb 15, 2017
Download Joe talks about his recent experience at the Psychedelic Shine event in Boulder CO that featured Dennis McKenna. Super fun time and was very thankful to connect with the Colorado Psychedelic community.   Here are some links to some folks I ran into at the event. Dennis's book

Links Antlife Psychedelic Club The Rooster - Reilly Caps Trichome Institute  (Max) Kimba Arem Knew Revolution  
Feb 8, 2017
Download Joe and Kyle talk at length about the recently produced documentary titled "The Sunshine Makers" created by Cosmo Feilding-Mellen and starring both Nick Sand and Tim Scully. Let us know what you think about this and if it was interesting to you at all. Please rent or purchase the documentary through our amazon link here to support Psychedelics Today. The Movie Amazon - rent or buy IMDB Links  Tim Scully Nick Sand Orange Sunshine Brotherhood of Eternal Love   Video of Kyle and Joe recording this discussion  
Jan 18, 2017
View in iTunes Download Kyle and Joe talk to an anonymous MDMA therapist and relationship coach. He has been working with people while they use MDMA beginning in the early days while it was still legal and continues to facilitate work with people while it is prohibited. For his safety, his identity is kept anonymous. The insights here are wonderful and worth learning. Hopefully you will learn something here and it can be applied to future therapies once we hit the 2021 MAPS target date. Some interesting thoughts from the interview:
  • Transcending the parent-child relationship.
  • We are human beings that can be in good relationship with one another.
  • Do I feel safe? What does it mean to feel safe?
  • Appropriate dosages.
  • Intuitive approaches for engaging with the client \ patient.
  • Possible applications for group therapy.
Jan 12, 2017
The future of psychedelic research is endless. There seems to be thousands of ways to get involved, and thousands of ways to approach the topic. In this talk, Kyle and Joe talk with Thomas Roberts Ph.D. -- author of the book, The Psychedelic Future of the Mind: How Entheogens Are Enhancing Cognition, Boosting Intelligence, and Raising ValuesTom shares his story with us about how he got involved in the field of psychedelic research and education. Starting in 1981, Dr. Roberts taught one of the world's first university-cataloged psychedelic course, "Foundations of Psychedelics Studies."
We get into a great conversation with Tom about his early days at Esalen to talking about mindapps, mindbody states, and different ways to approach psychedelic research.

Topics of Discussion:

  • Esalen Institute -- Stanislav Grof, Holotropic Breathwork, and Maslow
  • Psychedelics in humanities and religion
  • Joseph Campbell
    • How the, The Hero with a Thousand Faces relates to the new archetype of the conscious explorer
  • The Good Friday Experiment
  • Huston Smith
  • Tips and advice about starting a psychedelic course/independent study
  • A Really Good Day book review by the New York Times.
  • Mindapps & Mindbody states
    • How different "spiritual technologies" can produce various mindbody states
  • Hints on Looking for Graduate Programs
  • Tips and advice about getting started with psychedelic research in various departments -- for example, in the humanities or religious department.
  • Using Grof's cartography of the psyche and Basic Perinatal Matrices to analyze art and literature


 Thomas B. Roberts promotes the legal adaptation of psychedelics for multidisciplinary  cultural uses, primarily their academic and spiritual implications. He formulated Multistate Theory (2013) coined Singlestate Fallacy, mindapps, neurosingularity, metaintelligence, and ideagen, and he named and characterized the Entheogen Reformation (2016). He is a founding member of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, a cofounder of the Council on Spiritual Practices and the International Transpersonal Association, originated the Rising Researcher conference sessions, and launched the celebration of Bicycle Day to commemorate the day that Albert Hofmann first intentionally took LSD. AB Hamilton College, MA University of Connecticut, PhD Stanford, Roberts is an emeritus professor of educational psychology at Northern Illinois University, where he taught Foundations of Psychedelic Studies as an Honors Program Seminar. Started in 1981 and taught through 2013, it is the world’s first university-cataloged psychedelic course. In the fall of 2006, he was a Visiting Scientist at the Johns Hopkins Medical Schools' Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit (Griffiths psilocybin team).  His website is:

Writing & Articles:

How LSD Saved One Woman’s Marriage - New York Times Review: ‘A Really Good Day,’ Ayelet Waldman’s Better Living Through LSD - New York Times

John Mack remembered by Grof -
Jan 3, 2017
Download It is the start of a New Year. People are saying 2016 has been pretty horrible, but 2016 has been pretty decent in regards to psychedelic science and research. We are hoping that 2017 will be a fruitful year as well. In this episode Kyle and Joe run through the year in review -- thoughts about the podcast and project as well as recap just a few of the psychedelic highlights of 2016. Kyle and Joe also talk about a Psychedelic Self Care and Integration course being offered for a short period of time, Psychedelic mentor-ship, speculations and visions for 2017, and much more! There was some discussion towards the end about rites of passage and human development. Kyle mentions writing a paper about this topic. You can check part of the paper out below the "Links" section.
2016 Psychedelic Highlights
LSD & The Brain Psilocybin MDMA Other Let us know what else we missed!


Dr Ben Sessa MD Psychedelic Science 2017 - Oakland, CA Psychedelic Integration & Self-Care Course

Rites of Passage: The Importance of Transitions

Ralph Metzner diagnoses the psychopathology of humans in the Western society into the categories of, “addiction, dissociation, autism, and amnesia” (Metzner, 1995).  The Western culture suffers from these metaphoric diagnoses, which stems from a loss of ritual and also the disconnection from nature.  Paul Shepard states that the Western Judeo-Christian civilization is slowly self-destructing and mentions that it is “ontogenic crippling” (Metzner, 1995).  Shepard examines the developmental process throughout human history and investigating the development of surviving hunter-gather societies that are still alive today – which give a foundation of human development since hunter-gathers still possess some of the indigenous traits of ancient human ancestors. To see the developmental and evolutionary differences over time in the human species, Shepard models his analysis by looking at Paleolithic hunter-gather societies which he states are the most ecologically balances societies (Metzner, 1995).  Shepard mentions that:
With the advent of domestication, approximately twelve thousand years ago, civilized humanity began to pervert or lose the developmental practices that had functioned healthily for hundreds of thousands of years. (Metzner, 1995 pp. 56)
The developmental practices that the Western world has lost but also chronically has become incomplete in human life are: the relationship between the infant/caregiver and the adolescence rites of passage (Metzner, 1995).
 In the Western culture it is thought that an infant must become independent at some point and early on attachment between the infant and caregiver might disrupt the developmental process.  In fact, this is not true according to Jean Liedloff’s who conducted case studies of Amazonian Indians.  Jean’s studies conclude and support Shepard’s theory that: “babies and parties in hunter-gather societies have an intense early attachment that leads not to prolonged dependency but to a better-functioning nervous system.” (Metzner, 1995, pp. 58)
Metzner and Shepard create an argument based around human development and the disconnection from nature.  From the ecopsychologist’s viewpoint – humans are part of nature and our development; physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally matters on the relationship that humans have to nature (Metzner, 1995).  As the Western world advances in the realm of science and technology the world begins to see great advancements and achievements, almost reaching a new frontier in human consciousness. At the same time, there exists a thought that if we cut the cord from nature – human life will slowly begin to become destructive and possibly cease to exist (Metzner, 1995). The development of agriculture and technology in the Western world has separated man from nature.  This disconnection from nature has also stripped the Western culture of the idea and structure for successful rites of passages from adolescence to adulthood.  Metzner (1995) mentions that:
Some of the only remnants of manhood transition rites involving elders are the boot camp and combat initiations by the military.  Beyond that, there is only the stunted futility of attempted peer-group initiation, whether in the pathetic form of college fraternity hazing or in a casual violence of juvenile street gangs, where twelve-year-olds carry handguns to school to avenge imagined insults to their “home” band. ( p. 58)
What happens to a culture or society when structured rites of passages begin to vanish?  Metzner points out and quotes Shepard by saying, “men [presumably he means “Western industrialized humans”] may now be the possessors of the world’s flimsiest identity structure – by Paleolithic standards, childish adults.” (Metzner, 1995, p. 58) This leaves the idea that maybe science and developmental psychology do not fully understand what it means to be human.  It is obvious by the choices the Western culture makes are not adult-like.  Indigenous cultures taught the children how to live a life that would keep balance for the next seven generations to come.  Nowadays, the Western culture is only curious about the short term plan or goal.  Instead of looking seven generations into the future, the culture looks only a few years ahead – making childish decisions to fill needs and desires.  Most of this is driven by competition that is highly influenced to children at a young age by the culture (Metzner, 1995). Metzner and Shepard mention that without proper infant/caregiver relationship and adolescence rite of passage that basic human trust-mistrust is off.  The Western culture usually lashes back at the natural world with anger – feeling that nature has deceived the society and failed.  Shepard mentions that the Western culture is suffering from an “epidemic of the psychopathic mutilation of ontogeny” (Metzner, 1995 pp. 58).  If these ancient techniques and practices cannot be restored, what type of society is ahead for the Western culture?  Erikson mentions that adolescents that have not fully transitioned to adulthood often become, “remarkably clannish, intolerant and cruel in their exclusion to others who are ‘different’ in skin color or cultural background” (Metzner, 1995 pp. 57). Resource: Metzner, Ralph. (1995). The Psychopathology of the Human-Nature       Relationship. Roszak, T., Gomes, M., & Kanner, A. (Eds.), Ecopsychology: restoring the Earth and healing the mind (pp.55-67). Berkley, Los Angeles, CA: Sierra Club Books.
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Dec 28, 2016

Natalie Ginsberg - MAPS Policy and Advocacy Manager

In this discussion, Natalie shares her insights surrounding U.S. and international policy around drugs. We talk about We understand that this episode had a bit of static/noise. We believe that it was due to technology difficulties. We have attached a transcript of the conversation below. Enjoy! Click here to download the episode transcript: Natalie Ginsberg Transcript


Natalie earned her Master's in Social Work from Columbia University in 2014, and her Bachelor's in History from Yale University in 2011. At Columbia, Natalie served as a Policy Fellow at the Drug Policy Alliance, where she helped legalize medical marijuana in her home state of New York, and worked to end New York's racist marijuana arrests. Natalie has also worked as a court-mandated therapist for individuals arrested for prostitution and drug-related offenses, and as a middle school guidance counselor at an NYC public school. Natalie's clinical work with trauma survivors spurred her interest in psychedelic-assisted therapy, which she believes can ease a wide variety of both mental and physical ailments by addressing the root cause of individuals' difficulties, rather than their symptoms. Through her work at MAPS, Natalie advocates for research to provide evidence-based alternatives to both the war on drugs and the current mental health paradigm.


Get in touch with Natalie:

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Dec 19, 2016
Download In this episode, Joe and Kyle talk with Emma Bragdon, Founder/Director of Integrative Mental Health for You. The mission of IMHU is, "To facilitate improvements in mental healthcare and encourage psycho-spiritual growth in individuals around the world." During the conversation, Emma shares her experiences of working with people in spiritual emergence processes and defines what a spiritual emergency is. We also talk about the importance of integrating this language into mainstream professional fields. The topic of spiritual emergencies is very relevant to psychedelics considering psychedelics can sometimes be a catalyst for a spiritual emergence process. We are very grateful and thankful for Emma's wisdom and hope that you enjoy it as well! Topic Highlights: If you are interested in learning more about Emma's Spiritual Emergence Coaching program, there is a 5-week online webinar that runs from January 19 – February 16, 2017 (Thursdays, 5:30-7pm PST). For more informationa and details be sure to visit About Emma Bragdon, PhD, (Transpersonal Psychology)  Dr. Bragdon is an expert in the field of Spiritual Emergence and Emergency. She’s been immersed in it as a researcher, psychotherapist, teacher and published author since 1984. She is the author of seven books and co-producer of two documentary films, and the Founder/Director of Integrative Mental Health for You, Dr. Bragdon is most well known for the seminal books she originally published on Spiritual Emergency in 1987, and 1990, and recently updated. Her most recent books about Spiritism in Brazil have also gained rave reviews. She was a volunteer for the Grof’s Spiritual Emergency Network from 1984-1991 and Editor of it’s newsletter and Journal. She was licensed as a psychotherapist in 1988 and has expanded that practice by serving also as a spiritual guide. She spent 6 months of every year from 2001-2012 in Brazil researching the positive potential of Spiritist Community Centers and Spiritist Psychiatric Hospitals., Other Links:
Dec 13, 2016
Download In this episode, Joe and Kyle chat with Daniel McQueen of Medicinal Mindfulness , which "is a grassroots consciousness organization supporting individuals and communities who choose to use psychedelics and cannabis with intention.  In addition, we create opportunities for legal, accessible, safe and sacred psychedelic journey experiences using breathwork practices, the skillful use of cannabis sativa and through sponsoring psychedelic events in lawful settings." We talk about:
  • Healing power of cannabis
  • Conscious Cannabis Circles
  • Spiritual effects of cannabis
  • Breathwork
  • Tranpsersonal Psychology
  • Psychedelic Shine 
  • Integration and self-care
  Be sure to check out Medicinal Mindfulness's Psychedelic Shine event featuring Dennis Mckenna. This event is all day on February 12th, 2017 at the Boulder Theater in downtown Boulder, Colorado.  Get your tickets today!     About Daniel:  Daniel earned a Masters Degree in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology from Naropa and received advanced training in MDMA-assisted psychotherapy through a year internship with the MAPS Boulder MDMA for PTSD Study.  It was his experience with MAPS that inspired Daniel to explore alternative visions in psychedelic activism and entrepreneurship. Daniel bridges transpersonal paradigms with the grounded clinical and organizational skills necessary to begin addressing the significant ecological and mental health crises facing our society today.  Although Daniel no longer practices as a clinical psychotherapist, he supports his clients as a teacher, coach, ally and event facilitator, providing individual and group transformational experiences and deeply held intentional conversations.  In his practice, Daniel quickly realized that the most important intervention he could provide to his clients, who were isolated and longed for meaningful contact with others, was a sense of community.  Medicinal Mindfulness is, in a very real way, a cultural intervention that provides a safe and transformational community container for healing and awakening... a program based on skill development and not dogma.  Since 2012, Daniel has been teaching a psychedelic harm prevention and intentional psychedelic use course called Mindful Journeywork.  Since the legalization of recreational cannabis in Colorado, he has been facilitating Conscious Cannabis Circles and individual cannabis journeys. In addition to his work with Medicinal Mindfulness, Daniel has a successful spirituality and life coaching practice with his wife, Alison, through their company, Aspenroots Counseling LLC.  Highly skilled in identifying and cultivating giftedness in young people and supporting significant life transitions, Daniel is inspired to support passionate and talented individuals striving to live into their calling.  A primary focus of his practice involves assessing and addressing the benefits and difficulties related to psychedelic and cannabis use and misuse. Daniel co-founded the Naropa Alliance for Psychedelic Studies and helped organize the first annual Psychedelic Symposium at Naropa University in 2012.  He is currently working with Grounding Solutions, Inc. to develop a natural rescue medicinal for users of psychedelics and cannabis. Links Medicinal Mindfulness Aspen Roots Mental Health First Aid !function(f,b,e,v,n,t,s){if(f.fbq)return;n=f.fbq=function(){n.callMethod? n.callMethod.apply(n,arguments):n.queue.push(arguments)};if(!f._fbq)f._fbq=n; n.push=n;n.loaded=!0;n.version='2.0';n.queue=[];t=b.createElement(e);t.async=!0; t.src=v;s=b.getElementsByTagName(e)[0];s.parentNode.insertBefore(t,s)}(window, document,'script',''); fbq('init', '1400246380002879'); // Insert your pixel ID here. fbq('track', 'PageView'); fbq('track', 'ViewContent');
Dec 8, 2016
Download It has been a big week for psychedelic research. Psilocybin and MDMA have made national headlines. The New York Times article, "F.D.A. Agrees to New Trials for Ecstasy as Relief for PTSD Patients," highlights the recent win for MAPS in regards to their MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research. The FDA has given MAPS the green light to pursue phase 3 research for MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for post-traumatic stress disorder. The New York Times also highlights the recent publications of psilocybin research in the article, "A Dose of a Hallucinogen from a 'Magic Mushroom,' and Then Lasting Peace." Psilocybin has been being researched by various institutions, including NYU and John Hopkins, for its potential therapeutic benefit to combat end-of-life anxiety due to terminal illness and cancer. The study results are fascinating:
At the 6.5-month follow-up, psilocybin was associated with enduring anxiolytic and anti-depressant effects (approximately 60–80% of participants continued with clinically significant reductions in depression or anxiety), sustained benefits in existential distress and quality of life, as well as improved attitudes towards death. The psilocybin-induced mystical experience mediated the therapeutic effect of psilocybin on anxiety and depression. (
In this episode, Joe and Kyle chat with, Gabby Agin-Liebes, a co-author of the psilocybin study quoted above and a PhD student studying clinical psychology. During the conversation, we get into topics about the recent publication:
  • Formation of the NYU study
  • Gabby’s role in the study
  • How volunteers were selected
  • Inclusion and admission criteria
  • Study results
  • Can psilocybin help those who are facing death?
  • Mystical experiences facilitating and mediating change in depression and anxiety
  • Current research that Gabby is part of and co-leading
  • How to get involved in the psychedelic field
  • Dreams and visions for the future of psychedelics and psychedelic research
  About Gabrielle Agin-Liebes:   Ms. Agin-Liebes is completing her training toward a PhD in clinical psychology at Palo Alto University. She is a member of PAU’s Early Intervention Clinic clinical research laboratory, which provides and evaluates evidence-based treatments to prevent trauma-related problems in recently traumatized individuals. As part of this research laboratory, Ms. Agin-Liebes is examining the effects of trait self-compassion on trauma-related guilt cognitions. Through a supplemental practicum, Gabrielle is training toward a teacher certification in insight oriented mindfulness meditation through the Inner Resources Center at Palo Alto University. Ms. Agin-Liebes’ other research focuses on novel and progressive psychotherapies for a variety of clinical indications, with areas of specialty in anxiety, depressive and traumatic stress disorders precipitated by life threatening illnesses. Through the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Ms. Agin-Liebes is co-leading the qualitative investigation of a pilot study examining the safety and feasibility of Psilocybin-Assisted Supportive-Expressive Group Psychotherapy for demoralization and existential distress in older individuals living with HIV.  Prior to beginning her graduate studies, Gabrielle served as Project Manager of the NYU School of Medicine (NYUSoM) Psychedelic Research Laboratory led by Stephen Ross MD in the Department of Psychiatry, where she oversaw the day-to-day operations of trials exploring psilocybin as a treatment for existential distress in cancer patients, and ketamine as a rapidly-acting antidepressant in Emergency Department patients, Through the NYU School of Medicine lab, she has received funding to investigate the qualitative experiences of participants undergoing psilocybin treatment for alcohol dependence and is helping to design a qualitative trial of religious leaders receiving psilocybin at NYUSoM and Johns Hopkins University (JHU). Ms. Agin-Liebes’ other research interests include the role of self-compassion in addiction recovery and the therapeutic applications of meditation and mindfulness.  
Nov 30, 2016
  15310426_10207900312889025_1816221621_n Download Joe and Kyle talk to Shannon Clare Petitt about the current state of MDMA research and what MAPS needs to do in the next number of months with the FDA as the phase three trials become approved. A few days after the interview the New York Times reported that the phase three research was approved. Shannon's story is great and optimistic. If you are interested in how to get a job in the psychedelic field, this is certainly an episode you'll want to listen to. We also discuss some possible tweaks to the studies that could be done that may yield interesting results, and also why MAPS is taking the approach that they are (its the most straightforward way to push the research through the FDA). wallpaper-zendo-bm   Here is Shannon's bio from the MAPS staff page.

Shannon Clare Petitt, M.A., MFTI, Therapist Training Program Coordinator and Zendo Project Community Engagement Coordinator

Shannon received her Master’s in Integral Counseling Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies in 2014, with a practicum working with youth on moderation management for drug and alcohol use. Her passions include working with addiction, trauma, relationship, the body, and nature. At the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies she serves as the Therapist Training Program Coordinator. She also leads Community Engagement for the Zendo Project, bringing harm reduction services to events and expanding efforts for awareness and integration of psychedelic experiences. Shannon is a co-therapist in a MAPS-sponsored Phase 2 trial researching MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with life-threatening illness. She is a California native and can be found running outdoors anywhere she travels, dancing to the beat, and jumping in the ocean when she gets the chance!
Links Psychedelic Salon Podcast Featuring Shannon, Rick Doblin and Annie Oak Zendo Project MAPS
Nov 22, 2016
Download Faan was a great guest. He is currently working on a cannabis startup in Montréal, Québec, Canada named Indeeva Biomedical. Joe previously interviewed Faan for his permaulture podcast Permaculture Salad to talk about how shamanism, ayahuasca and permaculture go together in a complementary way (link). At the time of that interview Faan was living on a permaculture/ayahuasca retreat center in Peru named the Paititi Institute. Faan now lives in Montréal and has studied at McGill University where he studied cubic farming methods, which is one of many ways to decrease the total carbon output of agriculture. [caption id="attachment_317" align="alignright" width="255"]Cannabis from Backcountry Cannabis Photo via Backcountry Cannabis[/caption] I hope you find his insights as interesting as we did. Feel free to reach out with any questions through our contact page or reach out to Faan via LinkedIn or Twitter - links below. In this interview we speak at length about number of subjects including:
  • Cannabis
  • CBDs
  • Opiates
    • Fentanyl
    • Addiction
  • Ayahuasca
  • Pharmahuasca
    • To what degree is Pharmahuasca different from Ayahuasca in terms of effect
  • Novel applications of drugs for specific diseases/conditions
  • Speculations about future cannabis laws in Canada
  • Synergistic qualities of cannabis.

 Links Aug 2013 interview Cannabis + Poppies
Nov 15, 2016
Download Kyle recently had the great opportunity to attend one module of the MAPS MDMA Therapy sessions. In this episode we talk about the experience at the workshop and about some other valuable topics as well. Let us know what you think, and please leave a review on iTunes!
  • Details on Phase Three studies for MDMA therapy
  • Oceanic\Manic symptoms vs "real" mania
  • Patients expressing religious material showing up in sessions
  • Measurement tools (CAP Score)
  • Similarities between this MAPS method and the Grof model
  • MDMA taking down the fear response and allowing patients to access difficult material
  • Watching hours of video as a training method for MDMA psychotherapy
  • Timelines for legalization
  • How to apply the scientific method to the music used in MDMA therapy
  • How to get ready for the legalization for MDMA therapy
Kyle Buller - Psychedelics Today    
Oct 20, 2016
Kyle Buller - Psychedelics Today In this episode Kyle and Joe speak about the recent interview they recorded with Dimitri Muganis. There were some relatively important points in the interview that needed further discussion and expansion and in this podcast we unravel some of the material. There is plenty more to unpack there. Some of what is discussed in this episode includes.
  • Race
  • Class
  • Research and Treatment
    • When should one take priority
  • Democratization of the medicines
  • Privilege
  • Paying for people to participate in research
  • The white upper middle class bias in the research
  • The bias in research towards veterans
Overall there are loads of things that we discussed, and in short the real message here is that we all need to keep moving forward. There is plenty of room for growth in the field for all of us to move our agendas forward. With endless amounts of research left to be run, we can still treat people. I'm not sure we are going to see Psychedelic medicines be used in the next 1-2 years in major hospitals outside of research, but we are going to see it in the next decade for sure. Lets keep moving and taking care of each other. -Joe Sign up for our mailing list here.
Sep 23, 2016

Tom Shroder Joe and Kyle talk about Tom's great book titled "Acid Test: LSD, Ecstasy, and the Power to Heal". Tom is an editor, and author of a number of books as well as the former editor of the Washington Post. Interviewing Tom was real fun and we appreciate him joining us for the show. We get into some great topics including
  • Tom's interesting connection to Rick Doblin
  • The history of Rick's rise to influence
  • The story of the Mithoefers transitioning from emergency medicine and sailing to Holotropic Breathwork and MDMA research
  • The book and this interview also follow the story of a US Marine who came home with treatment resistant PTSD and was then treated by the Mithoefers with MDMA as part of their research.
The book is amazing and well worth your time if you want to get familiarized with the hopes and history of psychedelic research. Links Tom giving a talk in Berkley covered by CSAPN Tom Shroder Wiki Acid Test on Amazon
Sep 22, 2016
Download Neal M. Goldsmith, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist specializing in psychospiritual development. He is a popular speaker on drug policy reform, spiritual maturation, and the emergence of an integral society (a six-minute clip of his talk on the “Fusion of Spirit and Science” may be found at: and an author, most recently of Psychedelic Healing: The Promise of Entheogens for Psychotherapy and Spiritual Development. Dr. Goldsmith has curated dozens of successful conferences and cross-disciplinary “meetings of minds” for corporations as well as the psychedelic community, including the Horizons and MAPS Psychedelic Science conferences. He is a founder of several discussion salons on integral philosophy, governance, media, postmodern science, healing, and the future of society. Trained in humanistic, transpersonal, and eastern traditions, Dr. Goldsmith maintains a (non-psychedelic) psychotherapy practice in New York and Sag Harbor, NY, and may be reached via his Web site:

Topics Discussed

  • What Neal's practice looks like
  • How Neal works with people who use psychedelics
  • Self with a small "s"
  • Aligning with one's Deeper self
    • Creating health
  • Sensory deprivation
  • Maturity - long term vs short term
  • Human history
    • Use of sacred technology to align with long term good
  • Psychedelic vs Psycholytic Approaches - Psychedelytic (combined)
  • Maturation and rites of passage
    • How do we transition to adulthood now?
  • How one can become involved with the field
    • Getting good grades, bringing good grants with you
  • MAPS
  • Erowid staff write ups
  • Future research with adept Buddhist monks
  • World religious leaders - research
  • We have to be mature with this process.
  • Comissions
  • Meetings with leaders
  • How to reintroduce back into society
  • 279 chems from Shulgin to research - Chemical Modeling
  • Autism research -UCLA - Alicia Danforth



Sep 16, 2016
Download In this episode we speak with Dimitri about a ton of interesting subjects including:
  • Iboga
  • Addiction
  • Bwiti
  • Dana Beal
  • Structural Criticism
  • Problems with giving psychedelics to the current medical system
  • Psychedelic Anarchy
  • Non-hierarchical organizing - making the group the parent instead of making a person the parent
  • Peer programs
  • Alexandre Tannous
  • Century of Self documentary
"Be hurt, forgive and organize" Blessings of the Forest - Give back to Gabon


Dimitri's site Instagram Facebook
Sep 11, 2016
Download Featuring Brian Normand, Co-Founder of Psymposia. Bio from Psymposia's site. 

Brian Normand is Co-Founder of Psymposia, greenthumb, and occasional trouble maker, focused on creating spaces and projects to teach people about plants and drugs.

He graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a BS in Plant, Soil, Insect Science, & Sustainable Horticulture, Magna Cum Laude. He lives in Baltimore.
In this interview, we discuss a lot, but here are some highlights.
  • Brian's introduction to psychedelic art.
    • Music and plants informing Brian's interest.
  • The genesis of Psymposia at a more academic conference.
  • The stuffiness of the academic world and it not being suitable for everyone.
    • Yet how important the academic work in top schools is.
      • Rick Doblin, David Nichols, Mithoffers and Grifiths and Dennis McKenna are individuals who prove how important it is to have top academic credentials.
  • The Psymposia Afterparty at this years Horizons: Perspective on Psychedelics Conference
    • This year's after party includes guest speakers such as Duncan Trussell and Rick Doblin.
  • The legal status of psychedelics in the USA and internationally.
    • Some loose discussion about Portugal.
  • Leveraging the globe for legal research on Psychedelics.
  • John C. Lily's LSD, Ketamine and float tank research.
  • How to get involved in Psychedelic work of different kinds.
  • Speculation on how to take advantage of different legal systems globally to move research forward.
  • Singing to the plants - Steve Beyer
If anyone would like to submit a story to the magazine at Psymposia you can do so by submitting your story to -- Take a list and let us know what you think! Brian Normand
Aug 29, 2016
Download In this episode we talk about the following:
  • Katherine's path to becoming involved in psychedelic research
  • Bias in Research
  • Mental state required to be a researcher
  • Impact to worldview after
  • Privilege
  • Harm reduction
  • Paying participants involved with psychedelic research
  • Future best uses of psychedelics
  • Medicalization of birth and death
  • Taking away human life from humans and giving that power to institutions
  • Katherine's work with Ingmar Gorman at the Center for Optimal Living
  • Integration circles
  • Bio via Psymposia - Katherine MacLean is an academically trained research scientist and meditation practitioner with a long-standing interest in the brain, consciousness and the science of well-being. As a graduate student at the University of California, Davis, Katherine was supported by a prestigious National Science Foundation research fellowship to study the effects of intensive meditation training on concentration, emotional well-being and brain function. As a postdoctoral fellow and faculty member at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, she was one of the only scientists in the world studying psilocybin — a psychedelic chemical found naturally in certain types of mushrooms. Her groundbreaking research on psilocybin and personality change suggests that psychedelic medicines may be the key to enhancing mental health and promoting openness and creativity throughout the lifespan.
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