Prior study of Buddhism, mindfulness or meditation is not required, only the desire to be curious and engaged with ways of working non-ordinary states of consciousness in therapeutic settings. Working from both traditional texts and those written by modern meditation researchers, the course introduces a range of topics and experience types, looks at how experiences have been met and understood through application of Buddhist psychology, and what psychedelic therapy providers might apply to work with psychedelics. Readings, class notes and discussion questions will be supplied weekly to prepare for the class discussions. The course includes study of best practices developed in research on trauma-sensitive mindfulness, self-compassion training programs, and difficult or “dark night” experiences in meditation. Participants will be invited to engage in contemplative practices throughout the course for an experiential learning component.
- Assess the efficacy of various mindfulness techniques for therapeutic interventions
- Describe a range of meditation techniques and how these support the growth of core competencies as a psychedelic therapist.
- Provide education to clients on the effectiveness of contemplative practice for outcomes of psychedelic experiences
- Compare modern mindfulness and Buddhism and demonstrate a basic understanding of key distinctions and similarities.
- Discuss ways that Buddhism and therapy converge and diverge on core goals and methods.
- Critique the notion that Buddhism and psychedelics are compatible, understanding important potential clashes and synergies.
- Explain why self-compassion and compassion practices are helpful both to clients and therapists.
- Describe best practices developed in research on trauma-sensitive mindfulness, self-compassion training programs, and difficult or “dark night” experiences in meditation and understand how these connect to challenging psychedelic experiences.
- Discuss how psychedelics and Buddhism have both been decontextualized from cultures they’ve traditionally been embedded in and demonstrate an understanding of the risks and opportunities that this decontextualization presents.
- Analyze the role of secular and or Buddhist practices for clinicians to support client outcomes.
- Prepare the mental state needed for the rigors of sitting for a client for extended periods
- Identify practices that are appropriate for preparing a client based on that client’s goals, intentions, and worldview.
Continuing Education Credit
I found the class Buddhism and Psychedelics a wonderful way to understand the synergy between the two modalities in maintaining awareness by tapping into a higher consciousness. This class was a great vehicle for understanding the Buddhist meditation and psychedelics to achieve awareness of “now” without having judgement.
I really enjoyed the Buddhism and Psychedelic Therapy course. It’s clear David and Adi are steeped in Buddhist study and practice, and well versed in all things psychedelics. Given this, they were able to weave these two themes together using thought provoking articles and reflective questions posed prior to each class, thereby creating an atmosphere for rich discussion and inquiry. I would highly recommend this course!