Cannabis Assisted Psychedelic Therapy
Despite the recent resurgence in psychedelic interest, facilitated in part by journalists like Michael Pollan (How to Change Your Mind), and by the increasing medical research and clinical trials that have been gathering momentum since the early 2000s, the use of psychedelics still involves substantial risks that should not be underestimated. Concerns of illegality, adverse physical or mental health effects, harmful drug interactions, adulterated or misrepresented substances, and inadequate preparation for the experience all have the potential to result in detrimental and dangerous consequences, ranging from negligible to extreme.
Cannabis, in relation to other psychedelics, has many advantages when used in the context of an intentional, respected journey or ceremony. It is readily accessible and an increasing number of states are legalizing it for medical and personal adult use. Reducing the risk for safe cannabis consumption is comparatively straightforward; cannabis is remarkably multi-faceted in its ability to be used in a range of contexts and intensities. Salient is the capability to retain a sense of agency and control during the experience.
Daniel McQueen, co-founder of the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness, has developed an impressive model for using cannabis in a holistic orientation of psychedelic medicine use, including a protocol for combining cannabis strains that potentiates the psychedelic quality while attenuating undesirable side effects. The process can replicate the effects of other medicines, such as MDMA, psilocybin, ayahuasca, and even 5-MEO-DMT by making some uncomplicated but deliberate adaptations to the blend. Psychedelic cannabis experiences can enhance awareness of cognitive and emotional processes, the physical body, somatic relaxation, physical, emotional, and energetic release and discharge, trauma resolution, nervous system regulation, and elicit visual experiences. Through the expansion of consciousness, it can enhance acceptance, compassion, insight, mindful presence, and creative problem solving.
A Cannabis Assisted Psychedelic Therapy session focuses on turning inward. The client wears an eye-mask and a curated playlist of music supports the emotional overtones. Sessions can range from a 2-hour psycholytic session, to a 3 hour psychedelic journey, all the way up to a 5 hour intensive experience. Therapeutic interventions are individualized to the client and the experience. At times, the therapist may just hold space and provide support, help guide the client to a deeper exploration of physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, and transpersonal domains, or support trauma resolution through a process of awareness and acceptance.
At this time, clients must have a Medical Marijuana card to be eligible for Cannabis Assisted Psychedelic Therapy. Engaging in CAPT requires at least one preparation/intention setting session and psychedelic integration. There are a number of options for acute, intensive, and ongoing protocols; please inquire for more information.