4:00 pm - 4:20 pm
San Juan Bautista


  • Frank Echenhofer (Speaker) Professor of Clinical Psychology, California Institute of Integral Studies


Many spiritual traditions profess that the use any drug is incompatible with spiritual practice yet many well known contemporary Western spiritual teachers have acknowledged the value of psychedelics in providing a taste of a refined spiritual experience that motivated them later to fully engage in spiritual practice and eventually to become spiritual teachers. Most of these teachers do not discuss whether or not they have continued their use of psychedelics but many in fact have continued to rely on psychedelics at different points in their spiritual journeys. Other individuals who have tried to follow a traditional non-psychedelic spiritual path have found such paths unsuitable for a variety of reasons such as having to use uniform practice approaches not well attuned to their individual natures. For this and other reasons psychedelics are often relied upon as the primary spiritual practice with less reliance upon the use of traditional spiritual practices. This talk will describe different ways of better utilizing the spontaneous openings & profound direct experiences that psychedelics can provide with the guidelines for preparation, protection, stabilization, & integration that the spiritual traditions can provide. For some people developing a spiritual practice that combines psychedelics and meditation practices can provide a path much richer than either path alone. Challenges and questions about such an integrated approach will also be discussed.

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