Ibogaine UncoveredMay 17, 2023
#13 - Caroline Lee: Death, Grief, and Ibogaine
Caroline Lee is a death doula, therapist, and photographer based in Oakland, California, where she is currently training to become a somatic psychologist and psychedelic therapist. She had the opportunity to receive ibogaine treatment about eight months ago.
What we discuss:
What is a death doula? What does it mean to be in relationship with death, and why is this an important relationship to consider?
How Caroline envisions psychedelics fitting into our rituals around death, if laws were changed and psychedelics were available at end-of-life for people suffering from palliative anxiety
The potential applications of ibogaine for palliative anxiety and more, from a therapist’s perspective
Should therapists be required to take psychedelics if they want to offer psychedelic-assisted therapy?
How ibogaine helped Caroline process the grief she experienced after a divorce that marked the end of a 16-year relationship
What death and the end of relationships have in common
What Caroline’s work as a doula and a therapist have taught her about the role of grief
Why it’s important:
You’ve heard it said before but I feel like it needs to be said more often: death is a part of life – and this conversation really showed me that talking about it openly isn’t morbid or negative or inherently bad in any way - it’s a way for us to stay more connected to the present moment. Feeling into the grief that we feel when someone dies, or when a relationship ends, expands our capacity for emotion – and using psychedelics including ibogaine can allow us to not only come to terms with those emotions, but arrive at a feeling of peace around our own mortality.
Relevant Links:Caroline’s Instagram Caroline’s TikTok Caroline’s Website Study: Psilocybin for end-of-life anxiety
#12 - Troy Casey: Exploring the Depths of Anger
Troy Casey is a holistic health practitioner and life coach who has spent the last 20 years helping people to eat, move, and feel better. Known as Certified Health Nut on YouTube and Instagram, Troy is an authority on longevity and leading a healthy and sustainable lifestyle. He’s also the author of Ripped at 50: A Journey to Self Love.
What we discuss:
Troy’s reason for undergoing ibogaine treatment. As someone who lives a very healthy lifestyle, I ask the obvious question: why might someone like Troy seek out ibogaine?
Social media and vulnerability: is there a difference between what people see on social media, and what’s going on in the background?
Troy’s goal of Finding balance in a world where so much of what we consume works against our physical and mental health
How ibogaine has helped him “get out of his own way”
How anger has manifested in Troy’s life, and what might be at the root of it
Creating space for anger while learning to shed bravado and “toxic” masculinity
Why it’s important:
In a world where we’re being more encouraged to feel our emotions, anger is one we still have trouble with. Anger or rage issues are incredibly common, affecting about 10 percent of Americans pre-covid – and after we’ve all suffered an extended period of isolation, the feelings we’ve suppressed are increasingly coming out in violent ways. Dealing with it can be a challenge. Troy’s experience with ibogaine sheds light on the inner battles that we face, and his response to it reinforces the idea that no human is ever “finished” their healing – or as Troy puts it, no one every truly “arrives” - and having that belief can sometimes be our downfall.
Relevant Links:Troy’s website Troy’s Instagram Troy’s YouTube channel Troy’s book, Ripped At 50: A Journey To Self Love
#11 - Julia Reibelt: Learning the Language of the Heart
Julia Reibelt is a director at Evolve Ventures and Foundation, and a former independent consultant for MAPS, with an MBA from Columbia Business School. Julia has put her corporate background to use in the burgeoning psychedelic space. She’s also spreading the word about psychedelics on TikTok with her account, @findjules, where she has over 100k followers.
What we discuss:
Some of the common misconceptions that Julia’s heard from her audience about psychedelics and ibogaine
Julia’s previous experiences with plant medicine, which helped her to overcome diagnoses including eating disorders, C-PTSD, PMDD and depression. Did this work better prepare her for ibogaine?
What separates ibogaine from other plant medicines
The “blueprint for life” given to Julia by ibogaine intended to help her maintain clarity
How Julia manages her relationship with social media post-ibogaine
Julia’s primary lesson from ibogaine: what is the language of the heart?
Why it’s important:
If we believe that ibogaine is a tool that can help us achieve better mental, physical, and spiritual health, it’s important that we remember to use it in conjunction with other tools. Julia’s experience teaches us that, one) it’s never just plant medicine alone that can help us move through challenging periods in our lives, and 2) the answers we seek outside of ourselves – and often from plant medicine – exist within us. It comes down to our ability to tune in and listen to the language of our own hearts.
Relevant Links:Julia’s TikTok Julia’s Instagram Julia’s LinkedIn Sign up for Julia’s newsletter Eating disorder statistics via ANAD
#10 - Dr. Kate Stone: A Creative Scientist Deconstructs Her Depression
Originally from the United Kingdom, Dr. Kate Stone is a creative scientist, physicist, engineer and tech founder living in Los Angeles. She is the founder and CEO at Novalia, where she and her team create interactive posters and other everyday objects that embody the magic of interactivity and connectivity. Think posters that talk, books that turn into pianos, and walls that play music. She’s also an avid adventurer, a parent, and keynote speaker.
What we discuss:
Coming into her ibogaine treatment, Dr. Kate had almost no experience with psychedelic drugs. We talk about her fears and expectations, and how she hoped an experience with ibogaine might help with her depression and anxiety.
Dr. Kate’s experience of witnessing the most powerful moments of her life, and the impact that has had on how she lives her life from one day to the next and where she chooses to put her focus
Feeling low post-ibogaine, and how those experiences have given her a better understanding of what triggers her depression
How ibogaine helped Dr. Kate feel more connected to the needs of her body
The impact of having a digital detox and the value of not having a smart phone for a few days
Why it’s important: It’s a common misconception that a single powerful experience with a psychedelic can “get rid” of our mental health issues – but the reality is, even when we’re doing the work to feel better, we will still face highs and sometimes, earth shattering lows in life. Dr Kate’s experience illustrates that a journey with ibogaine can provide us with a better understanding of what prompts our depression and anxiety, and with a sense of compassion and resilience for when these feelings might arise again.
Relevant Links:Kate’s website Kate’s Instagram Kate’s Twitter Kate’s company, Novalia Kate’s 2013 TED Talk: DJ Decks Made of… Paper Kate’s 2018 TED Talk: The Press Trampled On My Privacy. Here’s How I Took Back My Story Major depression prevalence in the United States Smart phone use statistics
#9 - Kaia Roman: It Took the Garbage out of My Brain
Kaia Roman is a bestselling author, service-driven entrepreneur, intrepid biohacker, producer, investor and philanthropist living and working in Silicon Valley. Specializing in the fields of health, technology, and sustainability for 20 years, she has also been the marketing and PR muscle behind the launch of several businesses and organizations.
What we discuss:Kaia’s role in the burgeoning psychedelic industry and what drives her to try different psychedelic medicines in a space where not all involved are interested in having a personal relationship with psychedelic drugs Kaia’s relationship with biohacking, and how ibogaine fits into that relationship The similarities and differences between Kaia’s experiences with iboga and ibogaine, including how its consumed, differences in dose, and set and setting, as well as the different levels of discomfort in these experiences What it felt like for Kaia to meet herself as a four-year-old, and how that meeting led to a profound shift in safety, clarity, and authenticity for Kaia The value of pre- and post-treatment integration coaching How Kaia’s experience led to a sharp focus on her mission and how she can best serve
Why it’s important: Kaia’s experience with ibogaine might be outside of what you’ve come to relate to this drug. It illustrates that ibogaine can be used in more ways than helping us put an end to addictive behaviors – that it can help us connect with the parts of ourselves that feel unsafe and aid us in releasing our attachment to story lines that keep us small. It gives us an opportunity to upgrade.
Relevant Links:Columbia University Study on use of Psychedelics Third Wave: The Ultimate Guide to Ibogaine Kaia’s website Kaia’s Instagram Kaia’s Twitter Kaia’s Facebook Kaia’s LinkedIn Kaia’s book, The Joy Plan Kaia’s book on Amazon Kaia’s podcast, Psyched, on the Women in Psychedelics Network
#8 - Flor Bollini (NANA): A Medicine Carrier’s Most Impactful Psychedelic Experience
Flor Bollini is a creative entrepreneur, strategist, and medicine carrier – and the founder of NANA Heals. She’s also trained as a Iyanifa, a priestess of the IFA divination system, and is a student of Ayurveda, Shamanism, and Africanism. She has been receiving and serving medicine for more than 15 years, and says her recent treatment with ibogaine was the most impactful psychedelic experience she’s ever had.
What we discuss:Flor, a seasoned psychonaut who has had hundreds of psychedelic experiences, speaks to her profound recent experience with ibogaine in Mexico, where she took almost 1 gram of the medicine Flor’s approach to the medicine: to explore her light, to see herself fully, to gain an understanding of how she is perceived, to surrender, and to get out of her own way. The intense visions and representations Flor witnessed: full blown virtual reality at scale of divine proportion, and cartoonish characters in sophisticated theatrical outfits that felt so real, Flor confused them with nurses in the treatment room How these visions made Flor feel (while ibogaine may have a reputation for being “scary,” Flor says what she witnessed was more beautiful than anything she’d ever seen while sitting with other medicines) The important messages she received from ibogaine, and how it allowed her to embrace her femininity in a new way
Why it’s important: Ibogaine specifically and psychedelics more broadly are often discussed and used in the context of healing trauma and facing our shadow, but Flor’s experience with ibogaine shows that when used with intention, this medicine can also enable us to get more comfortable with our light.
Relevant Links:Flor’s website Flor’s company, NANA Flor’s Instagram Flor’s LinkedIn VICE story about Flor’s work
#7 - Brigit Ritchie: 56 Questions for Ibogaine
Brigit is the founder and CEO of We, a learning studio that provides workshops and experiences to help people develop relational mindfulness within their relationships at work. She’s also an intimacy and relationship coach, a mom, and an artist.
What we discuss:what life was like before a recent ibogaine experience at Beond how she struggled to maintain a work-life balance how her relationships with alcohol and tobacco had become problematic without much awareness of how these substances were affecting her how she had hoped that treatment with ibogaine might help her heal from the trauma of experiencing abuse as a child her intense preparation for her experience how she developed a list of not 2 or 3 but 56 questions for ibogaine how her ibogaine experience, which was wildly different than what she expected, could have gone in two very different directions
Why it’s important: Brigit’s story is one that many of us can relate to: how many of us are struggling with burnout, numbing our pain with substances, and sitting with unresolved childhood trauma? There’s a lot to learn from Brigit’s understanding of relationships and intimacy, and from her experience navigating her ibogaine treatment.
Relevant Links:Brigit’s company, WE Brigit’s Instagram Brigit’s Artwork Shoutout LA Feature on Brigit Ritchie
#6 - Kerry Rhodes: The Supporter’s Role
Kerry Rhodes is a former NFL safety who played in the league for 9 years, first for the New York Jets and then for the Arizona Cardinals, until 2013. Today he is a musician, writer, director, producer, and actor, who hasn’t exactly shied away from talking about his own personal use of psychedelics and how they have changed his life for the better.
What we discuss:Kerry’s experiences with psychedelic medicine the role psychedelics could have for folks in professional sports leagues the role of the supporter: what does it look like to support a family member, a friend, a loved one through the ibogaine experience? How to best support someone who is about to undergo an ibogaine treatment The importance of preparation, integration, and community advice for those in a supporter’s role
Why it’s important: Supporting a loved one through a traumatic period in their lives can be incredibly challenging, because it requires a level of surrender on the part of the supporter, too – a sense of trust in the process, and a willingness to let go of control. Kerry’s experience shows us how vital support from a loved one can be in taking the initial step to seek treatment, and how that support can allow a person to learn to trust the process, too.
Relevant Links:Forbes story about Kerry Rhodes’ ayahuasca experience Trailer for The Medicine documentary featuring Kerry Rhodes The Medicine documentary website High Impact Healing: Kerry Rhodes interviewed about Ibogaine Kerry Rhodes on Twitter
#5 - Vianey “Nurse V.” Ariadna Perez: A Nurse’s Perspective on Ibogaine
Vianey Ariadna Perez, or Nurse V. as everyone at Beond calls her, is a registered nurse and the head of nursing at Beond. Nurse V. has overseen more than 500 ibogaine experiences, and a few months ago, she also had her own experience with the powerful medicine. Born in Mexico and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, she studied at a private nursing university and worked in Cancun’s General Hospital in several different departments before she began working with ibogaine in 2018.
There are some obvious things required of Beond’s nursing staff, and some less obvious things. In this episode, Nurse V. discusses some of the finer points of being a nurse in this kind of setting, and shares about her experience of witnessing transformational changes in the people she cares for.
Nurse V. opens up about her own experience with ibogaine in the spring of 2022, and she discusses a topic on the minds of several people in the psychedelic space: is it necessary for people who work with a psychedelic medicine like ibogaine to have their own experience with the medicine?
She also offers up advice to folks with nursing experience who might be considering working in this growing space.
Why it’s important: Nurse V presents a different perspective on ibogaine treatment: not one from the patient’s chair or the science lab but from directly opposite a patient, within the treatment room, and as the leader of a nursing team overseeing several patients who are at different points in their ibogaine treatment plan. Learning about Nurse V’s experiences with ibogaine, both personal and professional, provides a level of insight into treatment that could be new for listeners.
Links:Youtube Video: What Happens on Ibogaine Treatment Day About Nurse V. on Beond’s website Nurse V. talking about her ibogaine experience on Instagram Beond’s online resources for professionals Life is a Festival podcast: Beond Ibogaine with Dr. Felipe Malacara and Vianey Ariadna Perez
#4 - Dr. Andrew Tatarsky: Why Drug Abstinence Only Doesn't Work
When it comes to therapy for people suffering from substance use disorder, the focus is generally not on harm reduction but on complete abstinence. That’s where this discussion kicks off – talking about the standard practices in the psychotherapy field for addiction.
The belief that people cannot benefit from psychotherapy until they are sober or they’ve stopped using is very common in the field.Dr. Tatarsky’s approach has been the opposite. He speaks to how the harm reduction approach in psychotherapy disproves the idea that one must be abstinent before they can benefit from therapy, and not only that, how traditional models of drug and alcohol treatment can often create further harm for people suffering from addiction. He has a name for this: treatment trauma.
He also discusses the origins of harm reduction psychotherapy, his early involvement in the field, and how it has affected substance use disorder treatment on a broader level.
Amanda asks Dr. Tatarsky some questions critics of harm reduction might have: if the goal of harm reduction therapy is not abstinence, what is it? What are the challenges of a harm reduction approach?
Dr. Tatarsky shares about his work in New York City, the recent implementation of harm reduction measures in the state of New York, and finally, if a harm reduction approach and ibogaine treatment can be complimentary.
Why it’s important:
Dr. Tatarsky brings up valid points that challenge standard psychotherapy models for substance use disorder, which are not only ineffective but dehumanizing. Through the harm reduction model, clients are offered a holistic approach to healing rooted in empathy, one that humanizes them and often leads to improved quality of life. Looking at drug treatment more broadly and ibogaine more specifically through his lens might challenge some of the preconceived notions you have about substance use disorder and drug treatment, in a good way.
Dr. Andrew Tatarsky’s website
The Center for Optimal Living website
Dr. Andrew Tatarsky’s book, Harm Reduction Psychotherapy: A New Treatment for Drug and Alcohol Problems
Integrative Harm Reduction Psychotherapy: A Case of Substance Use, Multiple Trauma, and Suicidality by Andrew Tatarsky and Scott Kellog
The Challenge of Harm Reduction: Changing Attitudes Toward Addiction Treatment by Dr. Andrew Tatarsky
Dr. Andrew Tatarsky on Twitter
#3 - Elizabeth Bast (SoulCentro): Ibogaine, Relapse and Relationships
Elizabeth Bast, a writer, yoga teacher, Bwiti Initiate, traditionally trained ceremonial iboga facilitator, and the co-founder of SoulCentro in Costa Rica. She has worked with iboga for well over a decade and is the author of Heart Medicine: A True Love Story, a memoir about an experience in healing through iboga.
What’s covered:Elizabeth’s introduction to iboga and supporting her partner through relapse Iboga and relationships: its impact on relationships The role of caregivers and how to support someone in addiction Elizabeth’s relationship with iboga and being initiated with the Bwiti The importance of relationship and community to the use of iboga How one can use iboga to cultivate deeper relationships with the self, others, and the earth What is reciprocity?
Why it’s important:
This heartfelt conversation gets to the root of why community is so important and intrinsic to not just an iboga or ibogaine experience, but any medicine experience. Elizabeth’s work and life experience speak to the value of relationship, and remind us that healing is not an individual pursuit, but something that happens as a collective.
Relevant links:Elizabeth Bast’s book on Amazon: Heart Medicine: A True Love Story - One Couple's Quest for the Sacred Iboga Medicine & the Cure for Addiction Elizabeth’s website Soul Centro’s website Elizabeth Bast on Instagram
#2 - Dr. Thomas Kingsley Brown: Ibogaine: Past and Present
Dr. Thomas Kingsley Brown, an anthropologist, chemist and a MAPS researcher who studies the potential for ibogaine-assisted therapy to treat drug addiction, among other things. He is the research program coordinator at the University of California San Diego McNair program, and an advisor to Beond.
What’s covered:How ibogaine stacks up against standard treatment models for addiction Dr. Brown’s research on the long-term effects of ibogaine treatment: does it last? the recent history of ibogaine Who is Howard Lotsof? How and why ibogaine was scheduled in the United States Psychedelic drug policy What Dr. Brown’s research shows about the importance of integration and support after treatment Can a psychedelic experience feel like a religious conversion?
Why it’s important:
If you’re interested in learning more about both the long-term effects of ibogaine, and ibogaine’s history, this episode is for you. Dr. Kingsley Brown also does an excellent job of explaining why ibogaine is where it’s at right now as far as policy and research. His explanations of his own work on ibogaine’s long-term effects speak to the potential that it has in treating addiction effectively.
Relevant links:Dr. Brown’s TEDx Venice Beach 2019 talk on YouTube: The Case for Ibogaine Dr. Brown’s presentation at the 2021 Nordic Reform Conference on YouTube: Treating Addiction with Ibogaine Dr. Brown’s 2003 research on religious conversions on Google Books: Mystical Experiences, American Culture, and Conversion to Christian Spiritualism Dr. Brown’s 2017 paper published with Dr. Kenneth Alper: Treatment of opioid use disorder with ibogaine: detoxification and drug use outcomes Dr. Brown’s 2019 paper published with Dr. Geoff Noller and Julie Denenberg: Ibogaine and Subjective Experience: Transformative States and Psychopharmacotherapy in the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder
#1 - Talia Eisenberg (Beond): Beyond Addiction with Ibogaine
Talia Eisenberg, co-founder of Beond, a serial entrepreneur involved in psychedelic healthcare who is most passionate about democratizing access to safe, scientifically backed treatment for addiction and trauma
What’s covered:Talia’s discovery of ibogaine Her experience at an ibogaine treatment center 13 years ago The evolution of the ibogaine treatment community Moving beyond opiate dependency and healing the underlying cause The importance of meeting people where they are at What happens during ibogaine treatment What happens after treatment Modalities that are complimentary to the post-treatment integration process Beond’s scholarship program and new Reset programs
Why it’s important:
Talia’s story is a wonderful example of the potential ibogaine has to completely turn someone’s life around – and not just that, but how that can 180 can inspire changes that go far beyond one person’s individual journey.
Relevant links:Beond’s YouTube channel: Beond Ibogaine Treatment for Addiction & Trauma Talia Eisenberg interviewed in Authority Magazine: How Talia Eisenberg of Beond Is Helping To Battle One of Our Most Serious Epidemics The Beond Manifesto More information on Beond’s new Reset programs Beond on Instagram