I’ve spent three and a half years using a combination of insight meditation and psychedelic therapy (ayahuasca, MDMA [ecstasy], psilocybin, LSD) to climb out of the pit I was thrown into as a child of sexual abuse.
On the “Other Side,” I have gone from a stuttering, vomiting, weeping child to a great roaring ape. On “This Side,” I’ve gone from a depressed, people pleaser who always felt like he didn’t belong to a man solidly and confidently of this world.
I still have a long way to go but there are a few things I am confident of in regards to healing trauma.
Medicine — the therapeutic benefits of entheogens are undeniable. They are not drugs. Drugs are what Pfizer wants you to subscribe to. These are medicines. And a very small amount of medicine (comparatively), used over time, is all that is required to heal. So as Alan Watts said, “Once you get the message, hang up.”
Truth is not in your mind, it is in your body, and proper journeywork is body-centric not mind-centric. If you are hallucinating you are experiencing your brain attempting to mask or reinterpret the truth, that’s a distraction, you must get back to your body. Your body does not lie. Researchers like Dr. Peter Levine are doing extraordinary work to support this.
If you’re still talking about good trips or bad trips then you haven’t even left the station.
Medicinal therapy without purpose and intent does very little. A single ayahuasca experience at a resort is fine, but it’s like the difference between travelers and tourists. You need to invest a great deal of time outside of your comfort zone if you want to understand a very rich and different world. It’s great to visit Japan for a week but it’s nothing like living there and speaking the language. Like my brother says, “It takes about a year before you begin to know a place.” The same goes for getting to know yourself.
Journeyworkers. Guides. Necessary. While the majority of my work has been done solo, an experienced guide can bring you safely through very difficult spaces.
Suffering. Intense suffering is a requirement. You can’t get to the good stuff without it.
Friends. As you change so will your friends. This is very disconcerting because it means letting go of people who you’ve come to rely on for years. But your new friends will be extraordinary. And some of your old friends, who have seen the changes that you’ve made, will come with you.
Addictions will disappear, and those that don’t will lesson their pull and become front and center in your consciousness.
Life. Everything will change. You will be drawn to some form of service. It’s like coming out of a cave into the daylight.