Episode #11 Psychedelic-Assisted Trauma Therapy - A New Frontier in Mental Health with Rick Doblin

Body of Wonder

Oct 22 2020 • 43 mins

Psychedelics are a family of psychoactive substances that induce a non-ordinary state of consciousness and altered sensory perception. Many individuals who have experienced psychedelics report transformative experiences, including a profound sensation of ego dissolution and deep spiritual awakening.

While psychedelics have a long and interesting history of human consumption, they were banned by the FDA in the 1970s, and to this day they hold the most restrictive classification as a Schedule 1 controlled substance. However, careful research by a dedicated group of scientists reveals that MDMA may prove to be a breakthrough treatment for difficult cases of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and emotional trauma.

In this episode Dr. Andrew Weil and Dr. Victoria Maizes welcome Rick Doblin, Ph.D, the founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). Rick received his doctorate in public policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and studied with psychedelics pioneer, Dr. Stanislav Grof. The MAPS organization is currently carrying out Phase III clinical research trials to assess the effects of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in patients with PTSD and other forms of severe trauma.

Rick distinguishes MDMA from other classic psychedelics, describes how MDMA is being used in psychoanalysis, shares why he believes this will be a meaningful catalyst for the exploration of consciousness, and explains why micro-dosing may not achieve therapeutic results. Dr. Weil explains the importance of set and setting in psychedelics use, and Dr. Maizes asks what next for this promising field of research.