A weekly conversation series with leaders in the psychedelic community. Designed in service of therapists, healers, retreat leaders, and passionate enthusiasts. Presented by Maya, the psychedelic therapy intelligence platform and hosted by Eamon Armstrong.
Sutton King (Journey Colab): Indigenous Reciprocity in Psychedelic Business
Today’s episode is a repost from my personal podcast, Life is a Festival, where I interview cultural pioneers about living a more openhearted life. Today’s guest, Sutton King, lives a life full of joy and service and she is also the Head of Impact at Journey Colab a major psychedelic drug development company. Journey Colab just raised 12 million and Sutton’s important work in reciprocity is a major part of the company’s appeal to value-aligned investors. In fact, she has a lot to teach all of us about the lessons of reciprocity from her people, which is why I chose to share this podcast with you today.
On the show, we explore Sutton’s commitment to healing and service from her early days dancing jingle dress, to her work with the Urban Indigenous Collective in New York. Sutton explains her perspective on kinship and the Seven Generations Principle. We discuss Journey Colab, the psychedelic startup that is developing mescaline for treating alcoholism. Finally, we review the responsibilities of psychedelic entrepreneurs as well as individual psychonauts to be in right relation with the honorable harvest.
A descendant of the Menominee and Oneida Nations of Wisconsin, Sutton King is a nationally recognized indigenous heath advocate, researcher, and social entrepreneur. She is the co-founder and President of Urban Indigenous Collective, a nonprofit advocating on the behalf of Urban Natives in the tri-state area, she is Head of Impact at Journey Colab, a start-up led by Sam Altman and Jeeshan Chowdhury developing psychedelic treatments for mental health, and she is the Co-Founder of ShockTalk, a culturally tailored telemental health platform that facilitates culturally appropriate patient-provider relationships.
Sutton King on Instagram
Sutton King on Twitter
Urban Indigenous Collective
:06 - Sutton honors her ancestors
:09 - A day in the life of a psychedelic impact advocate
:14 - Sutton’s early life and indigenous cultural traditions
:23 - Kinship and Seven Generations as a way of understanding indigenous reciprocity
:33 - Mescaline, Peyote, and Journey Colab Reciprocity Trust
:43 - The Nagoya Protocol, Free and Prior and Informed Consent and the responsibility of psychedelic business
:58 - The responsibility of individual psychonauts for Indigenous reciprocity
Robin Carhart-Harris: Psilocybin vs Antidepressants
Named one of Time Magazine’s most influential people of 2021, Robin Carhart-Harris conducts some of the most impactful psychedelic research in the world.
On the podcast, we review Robin’s early research with MDMA and his involvement with the first fMRI and MEG studies of LSD. We talk about his 2016 study of psilocybin’s efficacy with treatment-resistant depression and his most recent head-to-head comparison of the psychedelic with the SSRI Escitalopram (Lexapro). The outcome of that study calling into question a generation of psychiatric scales.
As the former Head of the Centre for Psychedelic Research at Imperial College London, Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris is now moving to the Neuroscape Psychedelic Division at UCSF. For 15 years, his research has focused on how drugs such as LSD, psilocybin, DMT and MDMA work in the brain, and how they may be useful in treating disorders such as depression. Robin is also an advisor to Maya, the measurement-based care platform that makes this show possible.
Neuroscape at UCSF
:06 - Robin’s early career from a masters in psychoanalysis to early experiments with MDMA
:12 - fMRI and MEG studies of psychedelics
:16 - Robin’s first study of treatment-resistant depression in 2016
:30 - The first ever study of psychedelics head to head with an antidepressant
:40 - Robin’s future research
:45 - Robin speaks to psychedelic therapists
Elizabeth Nielson (Fluence): Should Therapists Have Psychedelic Experiences?
Whether psychedelic therapists should have their own experiences with these compounds as part of their training is a passionately debated subject. Dr. Elizabeth Nielson, cofounder of Fluence, one of the foremost organizations training psychedelic therapists, has been pondering this for sometime, including how we ask the question itself. Her recent paper in the Journal of Humanistic Psychology explores the ethical considerations in offering and providing such experiences and is the subject of today’s podcast.
Our conversation begins with the ethics of discussing personal psychedelic experiences. We talk about the work of Fluence from harm reduction to integration coaching. We discuss Dr. Nielson’s article “Psychedelics as a Training Experience for Psychedelic Therapists: Drawing on History to Inform Current Practice.” We explore the paradigms of the shamanic and Western worldview. Finally, we review other kinds of altered states of consciousness that psychedelic therapists can explore, in a.
Dr. Elizabeth Nielson is a co-founder of Fluence and a psychologist with a focus on developing psychedelic medicines as empirically supported treatments for PTSD, substance use problems, and mood disorders. Dr. Nielson is a Site Co-Principal Investigator and therapist for an FDA approved Phase 3 clinical trial of MDMA-assisted Psychotherapy for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and has served as a therapist on FDA approved clinical trials of psilocybin-assisted treatment of alcohol use disorder, psilocybin-assisted treatment of treatment resistant depression, and earlier phase 2 and 3 trials of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. Through Fluence, she provides continuing education and training programs for therapists who wish to engage in integration of psychedelic experiences in clinical settings.
Dr. Elizabeth Neilson on Twitter
“Psychedelics as a Training Experience for Psychedelic Therapists: Drawing on History to Inform Current Practice” (Journal of Humanistic Psychology)
:08 - The ethics of sharing a personal psychedelic experience
:12 - The work of Fluence from harm reduction to integration coaching
:26 - The value of psychedelic experiences for psychedelic-assisted therapist
:29 - The paradigms of shamanic vs Western medical
:35 - Iatrogenic addiction and need for caution and research
:44 - How Fluence offers experiential training in lieu of offering psychedelics
:42 - The value of a therapist’s pervious psychedelic experiences
1:00 - Advice to therapists
Lyle Maxson (SoundSelf): Will Digital Therapeutics Replace Psychedelics?
The world of digital therapeutics is booming just as fast as psychedelic therapy. Today’s guest, Lyle Maxson, is resolutely optimistic about the positive synthesis of the two.
On the show, we discuss the science of Lyle’s software SoundSelf, which uses voice to generate a hypnotic world of light, color, and sound. We review his business partner Robin Arnott’s Technodelic Manifesto and ask the important question: Will technology replace therapists? We also cover data sovereignty, metric tracking, and finally the future of psychedelic medicine and digital therapeutics.
With a start in immersive environments at festivals, Lyle Maxson is a pioneer of Transformative Entertainment. He is Chief Strategy Officer of Entheo Digital - a digital therapeutics company pursuing FDA clearance and the creation of a wellness technology marketplace at the intersection of psychedelic therapy and experiential medicine. He is also the co-founder of Andromeda Entertainment, a VR publisher bringing to market “Games for Good,” and GeniusX, a VR education platform.
The Technodelic Manifesto By Robin Arnott
Luminous Lyle on Instagram
Lyle on Linkedin
:09 - Lyle’s background in lucid dreaming, festival production and biohacking
:18 - The Technodelic Manifesto By Robin Arnott
:23 - The Science of SoundSelf
:28 - Will technology replace therapists?
:33 - Metric tracking and data sovereignty
:38 - The future of psychedelic medicine and unforeseen consequences of digital therapeutics
:46 - Educating psychedelic therapists in VR
Lisa Dannen (Maya): Our Colleague’s First Ayahuasca Retreat
Lisa Dannen, our colleague at Maya, recently experienced her first Ayahuasca retreat in Peru. Today on the show, she shares all the preparation and integration that went into her experience.
On the podcast, we discuss about Lisa’s work with Maya, and why she wanted to experience Ayahuasca for healing and personal growth. We discuss her 10 day experience in the Sacred Valley of Peru as well as her subsequent integration. Finally Lisa gives her advice to others planning a similar experience.
Lisa has over ten years of experience changing what people know, think, and do about controversial social issues, Lisa began her career at the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, advocating for the housing rights of low-income individuals. In 2015, Lisa transitioned into the cannabis industry to help to reform discriminatory federal and state drug policies as the Marketing Director at the National Cannabis Industry Association in Denver. She currently serves as Maya’s Director of Marketing & Communications and as a passionate proponent for psychedelic healing.
Chaka-Runa Retreat Center
Don Gino Chaka-Runa Music
:07 - Why Lisa decided to work at a psychedelic medicine company
:13 - Why Lisa wanted to drink Ayahuasca and how she prepared
:25 - The experience of five ayahuasca ceremonies in ten days
:36 - Lisa’s experience with psychedelic integration
:42 - How her ayahuasca ceremony has changed Lisa’s professional life
:50 - Advice to others planning to go on an ayahuasca experience
Martijn Schirp (Synthesis): The Container is More Important than the Medicine
Building a psychedelic company is a lot like creating a healing container. It starts with really understand your own role as Martijn Schirp, founder of Synthesis — a psilocybin retreat center and institute in the Netherlands — discovered.
On the show we discuss Martijn’s initial roles as facilitator and then CEO of Synthesis and the value of having a comprehensive team. We compare ketamine and psilocybin and the efficacy of a communal setting for healing. We explore creating a safe healing container from medical screening all the way to evidence-based integration. Finally we discuss the stewardship model as the future of psychedelic business.
Synthesis is a legal, professionally guided truffle retreat center for professionals to experience personal growth, emotional breakthroughs, and spiritual development. Their expert team of facilitators and meditation and breathwork instructors, create an experience that blends the best of ancient wisdom, with cutting edge science.
First as CEO and now as Chief Visionary Officer Martijn has driven the vision of Synthesis Institute since he co-founded the company in 2018. He previously co-founded HighExistence and Apotheosis. His work and identity as an entrepreneur is strongly influenced by eco-phenomenological thought, and by his decade-long personal practice with Buddhism and Shamanism. He is currently focused on scaling opportunities for flourishing, well-being, and transformation through the synthesis of contemplative practices, immersive technology, and psychedelics.
Martijn on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/martijnschirp
Synthesis on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/synthesisinstitute
:05 - Martijn’s style of leadership
:14 - The value of having a comprehensive, integrated team at Synthesis
:19 - Ketamine vs psilocybin and the value of a communal setting for healing
:23 - How Synthesis creates a healing “container”
:30 - Integration, evidence-based care, and post retreat risks
:38 - Comprehensive medical screening protocols
:46 - The stewardship model as the future of psychedelic business
1:00 - Advice to psychedelic therapists
Eamon does such a good job covering a variety of topics. The guests offer valuable insight as well. I would recommend this podcast to anyone looking to be inspired and informed!
Perhaps I’ve just been unfortunate in which podcasts I’ve happened to start with, but I’m struck by the strong infomercial quality of the ones I’ve heard so far. I’m hearing interviews with people representing various psychedelic-associated business ventures — psilocybin retreat centers, somebody who owns a chain of ketamine clinics in California. These are places that charge big bucks for psychedelic treatments. That’s not intrinsically evil, I guess, but when somebody is speaking as the owner or representative of an organization charging, and making, big bucks I simply do not trust them in the way I trust people who are giving their opinions about something from which they do not stand to gain — people who are just telling the interviewer what they know, or what they passionately believe. And these Psychedollar Therapy owners and reps really don’t sound the same way people do on podcasts when they have nothing to gain. There’s a lack of skepticism, lack of self doubt, shallowness of thought in these interviews with people representing some Psychedollar biz..
Look forward to this every week!!
Love the topics and the style in which the interviews are conducted. I look forward to my alert that there is a new episode!