Episode 29 with Michael Pollan as he discusses his new book ‘How to Change Your Mind – What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression and Transcendence’
Michael beams into the IAH Podcast (Originally for the MAPS Podcast) for an all new episode of the show. His iconic books on the nature and ethics of food have become staples within the zeitgeist of the modern diet and sustainable agriculture. Now, as evidenced in his new book and this podcast, he’s taken on the world of psychedelic science and research with as much insight and objectivity as you would expect from him.
Zach Leary’s conversation with Michael dives into the importance of the research he studied while writing the book, the origins of his interest on the topic and his own personal experiences with psychedelic medicines.
INTRO RANT – the passing of Anthony Bourdain
Michael Pollan – For more than thirty years, Michael Pollan has been writing books and articles about the places where nature and culture intersect: on our plates, in our farms and gardens, and in our minds. He is the author of the new book How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence and five New York Times bestsellers.
This episode of the IAH podcast is actually a double dipping orgasmic sonic podcast co-share with the MAPS Podcast (www.maps.opg). The interview with Duncan was so good, of course, that I felt compelled to use it for both shows that I host. What can be said about a talk with Duncan? Not much that hasn’t been said before however, since this episode was recorded for the MAPS show it’s focus is primarily on psychedelics. Duncan is one of the smartest psychonauts in the multi-verse and is no doubt one of the finest representatives for the power and potential of psychedelics. Enjoy!
INTRO RANT – On John Perry Barlow
This episode of the podcast is brought to you by The Timothy Leary Project a new book by Jennifer Ulrich, published by Abrams Books.
Duncan Trussell is a comedian, psychonaut and host of the wildly popular Duncan Trussell Family Hour
Live from Psychedelic Science ’17 in Oakland, this panel explores the future of psychiatry in the psychedelic context. In this conversational panel format, the conversation discucces with great candor and honesty all the pros, cons, triumphs and setbacks that have occurred within the last 10 years. Dr. Summergrad and Dr. Insel both share their experiences from the mental health and patient-doctor perspective.
Moderated by George Goldsmith and featuring Paul Summergrad, MD, and Thomas Insel, MD.
George Goldsmith is a co-founder and director of COMPASS – a non-profit medical research organisation dedicated to accelerating access to evidence-led innovation in mental health and wellbeing. George’s early training and experience was a blend of cognitive psychology, clinical psychology and computer science.
Paul Summergrad, M.D., is the Dr. Frances S. Arkin professor and chairman of the Department of Psychiatry and professor of medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine and psychiatrist-in-chief at Tufts Medical Center.
Thomas Roland Insel is an American neuroscientist and psychiatrist who led the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) from 2002 until November 2015. Prior to becoming Director of NIMH, he was the founding Director of the Center for Behavioral Neuroscience at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.
Please visit www.maps.org for more information
Recorded live from Psychedelic Science ’17! This is a dual podcast swap with The MAPS Podcast and features Shane Mauss, Lex Pelger and Berra Yazar-Klosinski. It was recorded live as a panel format and took place at the very tail end of the Psychedelic Science conference in Oakland, CA. Because it was the end of the conference we collectively reminisced and riffed in a loose, funny and free conversational feel about where psychedelic research is headed. We also spoke of our culture outside of our own echo chamber and how the rest of America is keeping up. I was so honored that these guys spent some time with me on stage and it took a lot for me to keep up with their brilliance and accomplishments. The intro was recorded live in India about two hours after the one-two punch of darshan at Kaishi-Vishwanath and the burning ghats of Varanasi. If you don’t know what that means have a listen then book a plane flight. Enjoy!
Shane Mauss is a comedian and the host of the Here We Are Podcast
Lex Pelger is the Captain and Chief Genius over at Pymposia.org
Berra Yazar-Klosinksi is the Chief Research Scientist at MAPS
Most of those who have engaged in the psychedelic experience can attest to some sort of mystical experience taking place. Even with that happening it doesn’t always bring one close to religion. Why is that?
Walter Houston Clark has defined “religion” as an individual’s inner experience of a Beyond, especially as evidenced by active attempts to harmonize his or her life with that Beyond. The Johns Hopkins experiments suggest that a large fraction of mentally healthy people with spiritual interests can have a profound experience of a Beyond—a mystical-type experience—with the aid of several hours’ preparation and a supervised psilocybin session.
Furthermore, most of the study volunteers report that encounter as among the most spiritually significant of their lives and as bringing sustained benefits. How do we get from such experiences (however occasioned) to “religion” in Clark’s sense, and in the sense of a group pursuing spiritual ends? Perhaps that transition is, as Brother David Steindl-Rast claims, inevitable. The talk will address that process, and will argue that some social organizations have strong but unacknowledged religious aspects.
Robert Jesse is Convenor of the Council on Spiritual Practices (CSP; csp.org). CSP’s interest in non-ordinary states focuses on the betterment of well people, in contrast to the medical-model treatment of patients with psychiatric diagnoses. Through CSP, Bob was instrumental in forming the psilocybin research team at Johns Hopkins University, and he has co-authored three of its scientific papers. He also lead the writing of an amicus brief for the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the União do Vegetal’s use of a sacramental tea containing DMT, a controlled substance. A unanimous Court upheld the UDV’s right to its practice. Bob has long participated in the development of the Bay Area spiritual community that draws liberally from the non-creedal, non-hierarchical ways of the Quakers (the Religious Society of Friends). His formal training is in electrical engineering and computer science.
Please visit www.maps.org for more information
For info on the CSP please visit www.csp.org/about.html
Many variables factor into the diseases that afflict our lives that go beyond the obvious medical symptoms. Complex unconscious psychological stresses underlie and contribute to all chronic medical conditions, from cancer and addiction to depression and multiple sclerosis.
Therapy that is assisted by psychedelics, in the right context and with the right support, can bring these dynamics to the surface and thus help a person liberate themselves from their influence.
Gabor Maté, MD is a Canadian physician, speaker, and the author of four bestselling books published in nearly 20 languages on five continents. His interests include the mind/body unity as manifested in health and illness, the effects of early childhood experiences in shaping brain and personality, the traumatic basis of addictions, and the attachment requirements for healthy child development. He has worked in family practice and palliative care, and for twelve years he worked in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, notorious as North America’s most concentrated area of drug use. He currently teaches and leads seminars internationally
Please visit drgabormate.com for more information
In so many ways todays comedians are really the philosophers of the day. The medium allows these great minds to tackle tricky, touchy and controversial subjects in a way that can’t be done without humor to offset peoples preconceived notions or the dreaded political correctness. Adrienne Airhart is no exception to this art – she came by the kitchen table to talk about her life as a comedian, how psychedelics are influencing her work and how a difficult and traumatic early life led to a breakthrough in becoming an incredibly strong woman. I really enjoyed getting into her mind and thought waves, I hope you do too!
Intro Rant: Death. Yes, death.
Adrienne Airhart is a comedian, writer and “cannabis professional.” My degree is in linguistics, with an emphasis on the history of the English language. By night I am a stand up comedian, a presence which bleeds into much of my creative writing, as humor is the tie that brings compassion and education into interesting text. My favorite topics involve cannabis and general “woke-ness”, ranging from environmental issues, cultural divides, psychedelics, and learning how to survive a scary political climate.
Daniel Pinchbeck has successfully morphed himself into of the most sought after, poignant and razor sharp social critics and consciousness surveyors of our time. His latest book “How Soon is Now” is like a how-to survival guide for the complicated world we are forging our way into. He stopped by the kitchen table to talk about the book, going “down and in”, some politics, new economic systems and a whole bunch of other stuff. One hour with Daniel is just scratching the surface. It was a pleasure to spend some time with him and I hope we get to do it again. Also, be sure to pick up a copy of “How Soon Is Now” when it’s released in February of 2017.
INTRO RANT: dharma vs. your current role
WELCOME: Our new sponsor Eat, Dream, Be. Head on over to eatdreambe.com/itsallhappening to learn more about these amazing neurotransmitters centered delectable food snacks.
Daniel Pinchbeck is the author of Breaking Open the Head (Broadway Books, 2002), 2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl (Tarcher/Penguin, 2006), and Notes from the Edge Times (Tarcher/Penguin, 2010). His new book, How Soon Is Now, comes out in Februrary, 2017. Featuring a preface from Sting and an introduction from Russell Brand, How Soon Is Now? looks at the ecological crisis as a rite of passage or initiation for humanity and proposes a “blueprint for the future” – how we must redesign our technical and social systems to avert the worst consequences of ecological collapse.