Art by Felix Morel
Sadly, measures to address addiction treatment are woefully inadequate. Even when an overdose doesn’t kill, heroin addiction often leaves the user with an abysmal quality of life. Many addiction therapy providers believe that commonly used drugs like buprenorphine, suboxone, and methadone do not facilitate true recovery or sobriety. Methadone, for example, is a maintenance drug — instead of using heroin daily, an addict uses methadone daily for the long term. Furthermore, methadone is an opioid agonist and binds to opioid receptors like heroin does, and unsurprisingly, carries its own alarming rate of overdose. To make matters worse, anticipated and drastic cuts to Medicaid funding will dramatically reduce access to any medication-assisted treatments.
...Iboga started to grow in popularity in the Western world when it was discovered that ibogaine – one of the primary active alkaloids in the iboga plant – was extremely effective in treating drug addiction. Since this discovery, ibogaine rehab clinics have begun to pop up wherever the drug is legal, from Costa Rica to Canada. Unfortunately, its prohibition in other countries, such as the United States, where is it a Schedule 1 drug, has slowed scientific research.
Iboga and ibogaine have been shown in observational research to interrupt multiple types of substance and behavioral addictions, mitigate opiate withdrawal symptoms, detox the brain and physical body, illuminate the root causes of addiction, and promote psychospiritual healing... (CONTINUED)
READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON ENTHEONATION
Mi amor, Chor Boogie, and I were super honored to bring our art and words to Psychedelic Science 2017, produced by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies. It was the largest conference for psychedelics in the world to date. Of course, it was a fun crowd! There was a thrilling balance of science, art, music, dancing, humor, culture, community, tea service, and delightfully odd inflatable creatures.
We offered a talk on the Psymposia Stage about our healing journey with the iboga medicine and also the additional factors that supported our positive experience with the medicine. The "medicine" is never just the the physical material alone; it is a holistic experience involving intention, preparation, participation, integration, community, tradition, spiritual technologies, and so much more...
To watch our full 20 minute talk, click HERE and forward into minute 59. Enjoy all the other great presentations included in the footage as well!
Heart Medicine, my intimate memoir about the iboga medicine, was present in the MAPS bookstore, and Chor exhibited two iboga inspired original paintings for the very first time...
48" X 60"
SPRAY PAINT ON CANVAS
48" X 60"
SPRAY PAINT ON CANVAS
This was one of those moments that it would have been handy to have ten heads like some Hindu dieties and the ability to bilocate, as there were so many exciting and revolutionary presentations offered, but it was impossible to take it all in due to events overlapping. That said, here are some of the presentations that were highlights for me...
*Links to videos or other media are provided when available.
Film Screening: Curandera
Presented by Ethan Goldwater of Hover Pictures
Cognitive Liberty, Neurodiversity, & Non-Pathologizing Approaches to Mental Health
Presented by Adam Andros Aronovich
Evaluating the Efficacy of Ayahuasca-Assisted Treatment for Substance Dependency
Presented by Anya Loizaga-Velder, Ph.D.
Rapid Antidepressant Effects of the Psychedelic Ayahuasca in Treatment-Resistant Depression:
A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial
Presented by Draulio Barros de Araujo, Ph.D.
From Taboo to Treatment: The Evolutions of Psychedelic Medicine
Presented by Amanda Fielding
Psychedelic Use Predicts Reduced Suicidality:
Findings From a Longitudinal Study of Women Sex Workers in Vancouver, Cananda
Presented by Elena Argento, Ph.D. Candidate
Neural Changes and the Relationship Between the Acute Peak Experience and Clinical Outcomes
Presented by Leor Roseman, M.Sc.
Ayahuasca Legal Prosecution Worldwide: Connecting the Dots
Presented by Benjamin De Loenen, M.A.
Duncan Trussell Family Hour Presents the Microdose VR Experience with Android Jones & Bruce Damer
PANEL: Psychedelics, Injustice, & the Intersectionality of Trauma
Film Screening: Sacred Plants
Presented by Javier Prato
Honoring Huston Smith
Presented by Austin Hill Shaw
Subjective Effectiveness of Ibogaine Treatment for Problematic Opiod Consumption:
Short & Long-Term Outcomes and Current Psychological Functioning
Presented by Alan K. Davis, Ph.D.
Debunking Common Ibogaine Safety Myths
Presented by Jamie McAlpin, R.N., B.S.N., & Christine Fitzsimmons, R.N.
Characterization of Mystical Experiences Occasioned by 5-MeO-DMT-Containing Toad Venom & Comparison with Prior Psilocybin Studies
Presented by Joseph Peter Barsuglia, Ph.D.
My Life Reset: A Journey with Ibogaine
Presented by Kevin Franciotti
New Findings from the University of Zurich Studies into the Mechanism of Action of Psilocybin & LSD: Relevance for Treatment of Major Depression & for Enhancement of Psychotherapy
Presented by Dr. Rainer Krahenmann, M.D.
Ibogaine & Opiod Withdrawal: Does it Work & Is it Safe
Presented by Paul Glue, M.D. , FRC Psych
Esalen's Legacy & the History of Psychedelics
Presented by Dr. Jim Fadiman & John Harrison, M.A., Psy. D
Psychedelic, Morality, & Virtue
Presented by Claudio Naranjo, M.D.
Film Screening: Shamans of the Global Village
Presented by Rak Razam
Ibogaine in Brazil: Finally Stepping Out from the Underground?
Presented by Bruno Rasmussen Chaves, M.D.
Cannabis & Spirituality: An Explorer's Guide to an Ancient Plant Spirit Ally
Presented by Stephen Gray, author
PANEL: Insights from Contemporary Ibogaine Research for Addiction
Ibogaine and Neurotrophic Factors: GDNF, BDNF, and NGF Releasing Properties of Ibogaine & Activity of Novel Ibogaine Analogues
Presented by Ignacio Carrera, Ph.D.
The Role of Experimental Language in Psychedelic Research
Presented by Nese Devenot, Ph.D.
The Past & Future of Psychedelics
Presented by Mike Crowley & Ben Sessa
Psychedelics as Behavior Change Agents: Addictions Recovery & Beyond
Presented by Matthew W. Johnson, Ph.D.
Psilocybin Mushrooms & the Mycology of Consciousness
Presented by Paul Stamets, D.Sc.
Cosmic Sister's Psychedelic Feminism Grant Recipients
Presented by Nese Devenot, Ph.D., Selma Holden, M.D., Katie Bain, Faye Sakellaridis, & moderated by Leia Friedman
Photo: the sacred iboga medicine © E. Bast
Is it enough to bathe only once in a lifetime? Is it enough to practice yoga once? Meditate once? Go to the chiropractor once? Do an internal cleanse—only once? I suppose that all these, like the "booster dose," are ultimately subjective.
And what is a "booster dose?" This can be referred to a subsequent lighter dose of an entheogenic or psychedelic medicine, administered some time after an initial full ceremonial dose or "flood dose." The term "booster dose" is most often used in reference to iboga and ibogaine, the visionary sacred plant medicine from Africa and its pharmaceutical extract, respectively. Depending on the individual, a booster dose of iboga or ibogaine can be helpful or even critical to a person in recovery from severe drug or behavioral addiction.
My husband, artist Chor Boogie, and I first experienced the iboga medicine in a traditional Bwiti ceremony several years ago. We were initially drawn to the medicine by a terrifying healing crisis: Chor's opiate relapse. Once I started learning more about the medicine, it called to me to assist me with my own struggle with PTSD. Long story short, the medicine ceremony—as well as the highly skilled facilitation of our traditional shaman—rapidly helped to heal our primary issues along with much more than we ever anticipated. Six months after our first ceremony, we traveled to Central West Africa to immerse ourselves in the beautiful Bwiti culture, receive full initiation with the iboga medicine, and undergo a rite of passage. Six months after that visit to Africa, we were able to attend another Bwiti ceremony closer to home with the iboga medicine. Medical and therapeutic jargon might label these subsequent meetings with the medicine as "booster doses." Chor and I would simply call these being rerooted—to the iboga medicine as well as our Bwiti tradition. Though Chor did not need these booster doses in a critical sense after his first iboga healing ceremony to maintain his sobriety, they were extremely supportive for his continued well being—and mine.
Read the nutshell version of our process with the booster dose in this article in Rolling Stone magazine.
In Africa, the "booster dose" is what the tribe would regard as a regular part of village life, the medicine ceremony, held for a variety of purposes: healing, inspiration, divination, community relations, to celebrate special events, or to honor guests. These booster doses can be a healthy, occasional form of spiritual, mental, and physical cleansing and realignment. They may also serve as a deepening learning or initiatory process with the plant. They can reconnect our body and soul to the the ecosystem, that great web of life and Spirit.
In the same breath, we approach these "booster doses" with the medicine in a respectful way, as apprentices rather than entitled consumers. We inwardly ask the plant permission to partake of it, as our friends in Africa do, and then we listen intently for the silent answer. We wait for auspicious opportunities to commune. It's not just a matter of us humans deciding to take the medicine. It's the medicine calling to us as well. When we are fortunate enough to have medicine come into our lives, we infuse the sacrament with intentions, offer gratitude, and let go of our human ideas around how the medicine is doing it's work. Ultimately, we may become the full embodiment of our living prayer.
As the Bwiti say: We practice living without attachments, and we cannot even be attached to the medicine! If we are inwardly grasping at the medicine and choking it with the expectations of our limited minds, it can be disastrous rather than healing. Booster doses are a divinely timed gift of Grace.
Is a booster dose always necessary for people recovering from addiction? No. Some people have one flood dose of medicine, and that's all they need, for their healing and initiation, forever.
Yet, booster doses or seasonal ceremonies do have the potential to be good medicine for anyone, when the medicine calls, because we are all essentially "in recovery" from the human condition, every day. We are precisely wired with the receptor sites to receive the teachings of these sacred medicines. According to the Bwiti, sacred medicine is essential for most people to become fully realized human beings. Though sacred medicine might not be appropriate or necessary for every individual, they are right for humanity as a collective, and they work through some for the benefit of all.
Will a booster dose be needed or helpful? Again: We practice listening to our soul—and to the call of the medicine. And, hopefully, we are paying attention to the delicate issues of sustainability, ethical sourcing, and social impact on indigenous communities. We don't ever want to take more than we need or more than the earth can produce in a good way.
Sadly, the iboga medicine, along with all other psychoactive medicines, are currently highly illegal in the United States, even for qualified medical professionals and traditional practitioners, despite evidence of tremendous healing benefits and safety with good protocol. This is not only an issue of drug policy reform, but also one of of religious freedom. We pray to someday see the medicine made regularly available to all those who are called, in a way that is not only safe and responsible, but also culturally sensitive.
Cheers to the booster dose—and the rerooting of the soul.
Photo: Bwiti temple in Gabon © E. Bast
Dear Ones, I am excited to share this intimate conversation with the one & only Rak Razam on the In a Perfect World – Podcast about the medicine path, art, iboga, addiction recovery, my memoir, the Bwiti tradition, sacred union, and LOVE above all. We explore these questions, and more:
• What is iboga, the ancient African entheogen and ibogaine, the chemical that is extracted from it?
• How can iboga be used to treat addiction and trauma?
• How does iboga connect to the ancestor spirits, and what messages can we learn?
• How does iboga differ from other entheogens like ayahuasca?
• How can these medicines be integrated into the Western understanding?
• Why is integration a vital part of the medicine work?
• How can iboga and ibogaine be held safely?
• How can we come into right relationship with indigenous medicine communities?
I hope you find it useful. Please share as inspired!
I had the pleasure of meeting Jamie Mac at the Global Ibogaine Therapy Conference in 2016, and I was touched by her genuine passion for healing and helping. Not only is she a skilled medical professional, she also has incredible nutritional wisdom and spiritual awareness in relation to iboga & ibogaine, known in some circles as one of the world's most powerful psychedelic medicines for addiction recovery, psychotherapy, and spiritual healing.
Jamie Mac RN is co-founder of IbogaSafe, a medical training service for iboga & ibogaine medicine providers aimed at reducing the amount of adverse events during Ibogaine treatment through safety advocacy, empowering providers, and improving the client’s experience. Jamie graduated with honors and has 18 years experience in critical care nursing. In 2014, she began working with Iboga and researching Ibogaine safety and best practices. She also began volunteering with the Global Ibogaine Therapy Alliance (GITA) to co-author the Clinical Guidelines for Ibogaine-Assisted Detoxification, which led her to deepen her research into the medical considerations and risks related to Iboga/Ibogaine. In 2015 she completed training to become an American Heart Association BLS and ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) instructor and continued working with GITA to develop the first ACLS for Ibogaine, and Heartsaver CPR & AED pre-conference training courses offered at the 2016 Global Ibogaine Conference in Tepoztlan, Mexico. She also presented on the Ibogaine Therapy Ethics & Safety panel discussion at the conference.
CHECK OUT JAMIE'S IBOGA SAFETY WEBINAR
STARTING FEBRUARY 19TH
What inspired you to start IbogaSafe?
IbogaSafe was inspired organically through our many conversations over the last few years involving our various experiences in widely varying settings, and through our work on the Clinical Guidelines project with GITA. The common theme that kept resurfacing in our conversations was the provider community's need for safety advocacy, education and training in order to prevent and respond to potential adverse events during ibogaine treatment. We aim tackle that issue through an inclusive harm reduction approach.
What makes iboga different from other visionary medicines, in terms of safety?
The biggest safety issue surrounding Iboga is it's potential for cardiotoxicity. Iboga is the only visionary medicine that carries the risk of lethal cardiac arrhythmias and sudden cardiac arrest. My clinical background working with similar QT prolonging drugs, arrhythmias, responding to respiratory/cardiac arrests and witnessing hundreds of sudden cardiac deaths in a hospital setting has given me a profound awareness and respect for the heart that most people outside of emergency care settings cannot grasp. Lethal cardiac arrhythmias can cause a person to become unresponsive and completely lose their pulse and blood pressure within 5-10 seconds. A cardiac arrest needs to be recognized and responded to appropriately within 3-6 minutes in order to prevent permanent brain injury/death. Therefore I strongly feel that everyone working directly with this medicine should be CPR certified and have an appropriate AED onsite as a bare minimum standard of care. Heart health exists on a wide continuum that runs from total absence of symptoms to sudden death, in a matter of seconds and often without warning.
Why is qualified medical supervision necessary for iboga/ibogaine treatments?
Detoxing patients off various substances in a medical setting can be extremely complicated and unpredictable even without Ibogaine factored into the equation. The screening, preparation, and intake process for this medicine is not simple and requires keen assessment skills. Recognizing and responding to adverse events appropriately and in a timely manner is even more complicated and requires a certain amount of medical knowledge, experience, skill and training. ACLS certified medical professionals are preferred when dealing with this plant.
Do facilitators need medical training just for psychospiritual journeys (vs. addiction detox)?
There have been documented fatalities involving psychospiritual clients and at lower doses. One prime example of a preventable psychospiritual death in Dr. Alper's 2012 Ibogaine Fatality study was a 44 year old female who became unresponsive 4 hours after ingesting 300 mg of Ibogaine HCL. Toxicology negative, history of hypertension (change to high blood pressure), and her autopsy showed an old heart attack and significant 3 vessel coronary artery disease. An EKG 3 months prior to her death showed inverted T waves, which is an indication of heart damage/heart attack that should’ve been further investigated by a cardiologist who would've ordered more testing. A thorough screening process for Ibogaine could've detected her heart disease BEFORE an acute heart attack when it would've been treatable and survivable. Proper medical supervision during screening could've prevented her inevitable death. I think that ALL potential patients deserve the same screening and supervision regardless of intent. Heart disease accounts for 17 million deaths per year worldwide. It's the # 1 killer of men and women, killing twice as many people as all cancers combined. The odds are never in our favor when dealing with heart disease.
Why is it necessary for experienced traditional providers to take IbogaSafe courses?
I think of this webinar course as step one to truly understanding Ibogaine's effect on the heart. One needs to understand how the heart works normally to fully understand how Ibogaine can adversely affect even a healthy heart under certain circumstances. Ibogaine's effects work specifically on the electrical system of the heart, which is the( most complicated facet of learning the heart, but this course introduces all those concepts via learning to interpret ECG's. (remove because and separate the run on sentence) ECG's are essentially a live real time reading of the electrical system that drives the heart. My secondary hope for this course is that it encourages providers to start the process of improving their own safety measures as they are able, like getting CPR certified and getting basic equipment starting with an appropriate AED. Some models of AED's have displays and monitoring cables available so they could also be used to do continuous cardiac monitoring. One way to motivate more cardiac monitoring is to simply teach people what the squiggly lines on the monitor mean. It's our most valuable assessment tool, especially for a client who is lying down in a dark room. All of the above steps could drastically improve the survival rate for a potential cardiac arrest during treatment and as a cardiac nurse and ACLS/CPR instructor my goal is naturally to increase survival rates associated w/ ibogaine related cardiac events.
What is wrong with mail ordering medicine for underground treatments?
Due to demand outpacing supply currently, we are seeing a worldwide problem of counterfeit/tainted product available over the internet and there have already been deaths documented in medical journals due to this. One article involved 30 year old woman with a history of drug abuse and methadone treatment was found dead. A bag at the scene labeled "Top quality Tabernanthe Iboga 50 g Gabon, Africa" was analyzed and shown to contain no Iboga, but a similar looking root substance from a more common plant which has an alkaloid that produces "toxicity effects including hypotension, bradycardia, gastric hypersecretion, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, skin flushes, nasal congestion, sedation, and coma. Another case study involved a 40 year old man w/ heroin addiction who ordered Ibogaine online for self-administration. He ingested 4 g of ibogaine and 2 g of an uncharacterized “booster.” He was found 8 hours later, unresponsive, covered in emesis, in an asystole (flatline) rhythm. He had suffered an acute cardiac arrest leading to cerebral edema and brain death, presentation consistent w/ ibogaine induced cardiotoxicity/cardiac arrest.” I suspect this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to deaths and near misses due to black market Iboga/Ibogaine and the dangerous practice of self administration or treatment with untrained underground providers.
Why would a nurse or a doctor need the IbogaSafe training in order to supervise iboga/ibogaine treatments?
Medical professionals are not on equal ground when it comes to attaining the knowledge and skills to safely screen and monitor Ibogaine clients or respond to emergencies. I personally did not learn ECG interpretation in nursing school and nursing/medical school generally only teaches students how to pass the licensing board testing. Like most medical professionals I learned on the job and via continuing education courses provided to me AFTER I graduated, passed (my boards, and specialized in working with cardiac patients right away. Hospitals spend a lot of time and money on staff education to make sure that they have qualified eyes on high risk patients. Also, while most medical professionals are certified in Basic Life Support, much fewer professionals are certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support. Prerequisites required to pass an ACLS course are BLS certification and the ability to quickly interpret ECG rhythms on the heart monitor so they can be treated without delays. The minimum standard of care in the USA for professionals working directly with all cardiac monitored patients is that they obtain ACLS certification within the first year and I think that standard of care should also apply to medical professionals working with Ibogaine. Additionally, the medical community at large isn't educated on specific pharmacology and case studies involving Ibogaine ingestion and how ACLS protocols need to be altered when dealing with an Ibogaine emergency, which is why Jonathan Dickinson and I developed the ACLS for Ibogaine course for last year's Global Ibogaine Conference.
VISIT THE IBOGASAFE WEBSITE
It was an honor to interview Dennis Hunter, founder of Care By Design (high CBD) & Absolute Xtracts (high THC) cannabis medicine products in Northern California. I found his level of commitment to plant medicine beyond inspiring. Despite facing some fierce challenges—and a society that is scientifically and morally still in the dark ages in regards to plant medicine—Dennis endured to create his superb all natural cannabis medicines. We met in Santa Rosa while Chor Boogie was creating his mural at Cutting Edge Solutions, a natural fertilizer producer favored by award-winning cannabis growers. You'll see Chor in action behind us here in the video.
• Learn about the differences that make Care By Design & Absolute Xtracts products exceptional and highly medicinal.
• Despite going through six years in federal prison and a recent unwarranted raid on his facilities, Dennis remains devoted to the cannabis plant medicine.
• Activism for plant medicine works! Speak up!
• Cannabis medicine is helping patients with cancer, epilepsy, PTSD, pain, arthritis, and much more.
• Exciting scientific studies are in the works!
MENTIONED IN THIS VIDEO:
Care By Design
Traditional Bwiti ceremonial music.
This is my kind of party... Milling about with thousands of glowing vegetarians, tasting all kinds of decadent delights that are actually good for me! There was even a yoga zone. Somebody apparently read my mind. I have been wishing for yoga zones in every public and private space. This fest is definitely an essential annual destination...
Seed Food & Wine Festival in Miami is the nation’s premiere plant-based food event of its kind, gathering an unparalleled group of more than 60 plant-based notable chefs, athletes, authors and celebrities for the festival’s third year. For 2016, event were held on Nov. 2nd-6th, including upscale dinners, fitness events and the nation’s first Plant-Based Burger Battle™. SEED celebrates delicious plant-based foods, fine wine, craft beer and spirits, lifestyle products, and companies, all while raising awareness about conscious and sustainable living.
Many thanks to JLPR marketing & public relations firm for the invite and positive vibes!
There were so many treasures, it was impossible to capture or fully experience all of them, but there are a few snapshots...
This super hero has been vegan for 30 years! Hardly the scrawny, pasty vision of common misconceptions. This is Geoff Palmer, CEO of Clean Machine Natural Sports Nutrition, and he must be doing something right. I was super impressed with their Clean BCAA natural food-sourced branched chain amino acids & electrolytes. It helps me to feel instantly hydrated, focused, and replenished post-workout. Oh, and it's super yummy. CLEAN BCAA™ delivers a 4gm daily dose of L-leucine, shown in a clinical study to increase 5-rep max strength by over 40% in just 12 weeks! I can't wait to try all their other products.
CLEAN BCAA features:
This is Nina, founder and visionary behind Sugar & Oats natural artisan made Vegan soaps, creams, scrubs, and skincare in South Florida. She carefully formulates all products with the purest plant based oils and 100% natural skin loving ingredients. Sugar and Oats promises to stay away from harsh chemicals, parabens, sodium laureate sulfate, and palm oils. Everything is cruelty free (not tested on animals).
Nina shared with me the touching story behind the inspiration of Sugar & Oats... She's a mama! And she wants the absolute healthiest soaps for her family.
I was blown away by the lavender bar soap. This is was the silkiest, most luxurious bar soap I've ever found (and I have tried all the good vegan major brands). The natural lavender scent was a perfect intensity. Also worth mentioning, the bar is a work of modern art, making it a great gift.
On June 15, 2016, the Care By Design cannabis medicine business facility in Santa Rosa, California was raided, searched, and temporarily closed by local law enforcement and the DEA based on a false "tip."
Care By Design and its affiliates have worked tirelessly to ensure its facilities, employees, company policies and procedures are in compliance with city, county and state laws. They are cooperating fully with law enforcement to resolve this as quickly as possible.
Care by Design produces the highest quality CBD and cannabis products, free of solvents and pesticide residues. If you are hip to natural medicine, you will know that CBD products have been proven to bring great healing and comfort for many ailments, without many of the dangerous side effects of pharmaceutical medications.
Countless patients depend on Care By Design CBD products, suffering from a wide array of issues including severe neuropathy, epilepsy, Parkinson's, cancer, arthritis, Crohn's, depression, traumatic brain injury, chronic pain, and menstrual cycle health.
Chor Boogie and I visited the Care by Design headquarters in Santa Rosa with Dennis Hunter, a founding member of the Care By Design, and Chris Buletti, CEO of another great local biz, Cutting Edge Solutions, purveyors of quality organic and conventional fertilizers and crop consulting services.
We cannot tolerate such actions from our government. This ultimately affects everyone. Protect your medicine and your personal freedom!
Learn how you can take action to support Care By Design at www.cbd.org/news.
I’m writing to you from a stunning villa overlooking a serene beach in lush Costa Rica, but it’s not all play. My husband and I are here apprenticing to become providers of the African sacred medicine called iboga within the Bwiti tradition. This medicine granted us a healing miracle 2 years ago, though certainly not an easy one, which I detail in my intimate memoir, Heart Medicine: A True Love Story. After this experience with iboga, we were both inspired to learn how to help others with the medicine.
Being a budding iboga provider, I asked the seasoned providers in our community a lot of questions. I learned that these elements can help guests to have a profoundly healing and positive experience with the medicine:
• Cultivate clear and benevolent intentions.
• Be absolutely honest in all communication with your providers. This is not only ideal, but vital to a safe and fulfilling journey.
• Come with an open mind and heart, once you have carefully selected the right provider.
• Begin from a place of reverence for the medicine. This is how the medicine can offer its greatest gifts to you.
• Be open to discovering that the medicine is a living spirit, not just a physical substance to consume.
• Graciously receive the traditional customs that lay the groundwork for a strong and positive ceremony: Bwiti wisdom transmissions, fire ceremony, ritual elements, medicine music, shamanic healing practices, verbal guidance in the journey, etc. These elements are pleasant for many, though they may feel aesthetically strange or even slightly tedious for some guests. They are entirely essential for many reasons that might not be apparent to the uninitiated.
• Come of your own volition, rather than because of pressure from a loved one.
• Be accountable, in some way, for the offering needed for treatment, rather than having someone else take care of it. This can help people to value the experience.
• Engage fully with the process and the guidance. Some people mistakenly believe that sacred medicine works by simply popping a pill or drinking a brew, but there is nothing passive about it. Iboga, like all sacred medicines and spiritual practices, are entirely participatory.
• Remember that the healer is just a human being, albeit a skilled one. It’s not entirely up to the healer to “fix” a seeker. The healer is simply there to offer an opportunity and create a safe space, but the aspirant must walk through the door and do the inner work on their own.
• Stay for the full retreat time. There is a reason why retreats are designed to be a certain number of days—and a certain number of ceremonies. It takes time to unravel and disconnect from the rat-race. In addition, the first journey is just the detox or cleansing session, making way for the guidance and clarity that often shines through in subsequent journeys. Keep in mind that every journey can be radically different, and some are more challenging than others.
• Attend to your aftercare and general self-care. Follow through with new life changes that were prompted by the medicine. Begin or sustain supportive practices such as meditation, yoga, tai-chi, dance, music, or others. Surround yourself with a healthy community. It might also be helpful to find the right counselor.
• Enjoy some creative integration activities, or ways to reflect upon the experience, such as writing or art.
• Create “positive addictions.” These are healthy, consciously chosen sources of joy, play, and replenishment. In truth, these are forms of devotion, in that we pour our passionate energy into them.
May you enjoy the gift of this day and the gift of your life!
For additional tips to better your iboga experience, explore this blog post from the Iboga Wellness Center.
Hey Goddesses! PLEASE SHARE:
WILD CARROT SEED is the earth's gift for safe, effective, & natural birth control!
Pharmaceutical birth control pills/ implants, chemical spermicides, and IUDs wreak havoc on our bodies, minds, and feminine powers. We should all be educated about this potent natural option...
The use of WILD CARROT SEED was first documented over 2000 years ago - though it has likely been in use much longer. Medical doctors do not learn about this in medical school!
There are *very* specific ways to take this beneficial herb. *Note that it's powers may be compromised by antibiotics or pharmaceutical birth control, among a couple other factors (see article). It is generally very effective when taken PROPERLY.
It even has many unique health benefits.
It does not interfere permanently with fertility and it does not cause any reproductive damage. Fertile women have gone on to have healthy pregnancies after using it.
My friends who are midwives, doulas, and herbalists have all recommended it.
You can find quality, fresh seeds at the Scarlet Sage herb store in SF.
Of course, this option is recommended for tested partners. Safe sex is still a vital consideration.
Here is a great article highlighting the work of Robin Rose Bennet, an herbalist who has long-term experience with wild carrot seet.
Ultimately, birth control is a very personal decision. Every woman deserves to be fully educated about all the options - and fully empowered when it comes to her own body.