Updated: Jun 6
So you want to go to a plant medicine ceremony with a certified/trusted shaman.
Well, fantastic for you! This starting guide will help you and your friends consider important factors before embarking on this path.
Is it legal in your country?
In the USA, these ceremonies are legal if you have a Native American "church" card or practice on a Native American Reservation.
Or if you are participating in a research study. There are ongoing studies for seeing the effects of Psilocybin, MDMA, and Ketamine. (note that this is not the same experience as a spiritual leader trained in a multigenerational tradition of psychedelics')
Psilocybin has been approved for recreational use in specific cities, such as Oakland and Santa Cruz, California.
Ketamine therapy can be done now in some states, such as California.
Peru is the home of Ayahuasca
Mexico has many indigenous groups that practice plant medicine ceremonies, but you might need to be apart of that community or prove your intentions to such a community to be allowed to participate.
Psilocybin, LSD, MDMA, Ayahuasca, Toad Medicine or ___DMT, Peyote, and Iboga are much more potent psychedelics than ketamine or kava root.
Ketamine is a sedative usually used at a higher dose to induce twilight.
Kava and ___ are very relaxing and can be found in supplement form or as a drink. Some cafes or Kava bars exist; CalforniaCalifornia, Colorado, and Hawaii have them. (note don't drink alcohol and Kava together. It creates a poison in your stomach.)
Read more on Kava and ___ in this blog post ___.
Are you taking any medications?
SSRIs, SNRIs, and MAO inhibitors keep serotonin in the synapses gap longer; thus, the effects of that neurochemicals last longer. Therefore taking any medication that affects how long and how much of a neurotransmitter is in your body should be considered if you are to partake in psychedelics; it is generally recommended not to avoid serotonin syndrome, which can be fatal.
Blood thinners are unsafe to have in your system when doing these medicines.
What are your medical diagnoses?
Specific diagnoses such as psychiatric, cardiological, breathing, and nervous system related may make you ineligible to do high doses of psychedelics.
In my paper on Psilocybin (found in the site shop), there are self-reports of folks with bipolar disorder doing well with microdosing Psilocybin, which is not a group of people who are typically permitted to use psychedelics.
Folks with bipolar and schizophrenia usually avoid psychedelics. This also includes marijuana. Although the evidence is variable, if you have schizophrenia in your family, it is suggested in medical research to prevent any psychoactive drug, such as marijuana, LSD, etc., because it could lead to drug-induced psychosis (more research still needs to be collected).
Again, always ensure you get a clean bill of health from your doctor before embarking on large doses of any psychoactive drugs.
Also, if you have an excellent therapist, you should tell them you are considering doing one of these ceremonies. So they can help you prepare and or monitor your behavior afterward. A Lot of things come up, and it's good to have someone to talk to.
Things to consider before and after the experience/journey
Stay with someone, and try to go with someone who has done this type of ceremony before.
Think about the shaman's prices, testimonials, and if it is at a retreat center or in another country, the cost of all that.
I don't recommend going to work the next day. Give yourself at least 24 hours to process after your journey.
Watch some documentaries and get an idea of what might happen...but stay attached.
Each person's soul and brain are different. So everyone's experience is different.
Try going on a dieta for the week or at least 24 hours before. Food stays in our system for up to 72 hours, so I recommend at least 72 hours.
Here are some examples of the recommended diet
I am not a medical doctor or a shaman. However, I have taken place in multiple types of plant medicines numerous times on my own and with a shaman. I also understand more about drug interactions after taking Psychopharmacology with Professor Afshin at Dominican University. Therefore, please work with a medical healthcare team, be wise, and do your homework. This is a serious decision. Do this to heal or to learn; take it as sacred and trust that your soul and spirit guides will direct you to the right place and answers.
To learn more about Psilocybin, please read my paper in my shop.
Post edited in June 2023. More edits to continue this month