Frequently Asked Questions
Questions that we've gotten the most
Our programs can benefit anyone who seeks healing and/or growth through intentional psychedelic use. Many of our clients feel stuck and are motivated to do whatever it takes to change. Others are curious about what lies beyond the veil of perception and are interested in deepening their spiritual practices. Facilitators in our network have worked with clients who are looking to address: anxiety, depression, PTSD, addiction, personal growth, spiritual exploration, clarity of purpose, and more. If you’re curious whether we can help, we encourage you to book a consultation with us.
It varies based on the program. We’ll highlight what’s included in the 2 different programs below:
Microdosing Program: This program is best suited for those who are hesitant to jump into a high-dose ceremonial journey right away, or are interested in tapering off of pharmaceuticals in preparation for an upcoming ceremonial journey. Find out what’s included.
Ceremonial Program: This program is best suited for those who feel ‘stuck’ in their life and are looking for a hard reset. Find out what’s included.
The programs we offer are undoubtedly therapeutic, but you’ll have to determine whether they’re aligned with your definition of psychedelic-assisted therapy. One of the challenges in this space is the emerging lexicon. Because this industry is so new, we don’t yet have agreed-upon definitions of words, which means people tend to use them interchangeably (even if they have different definitions). We recognize this is confusing, so we’re going to do our best to clear this up for you below.
People tend to refer to any form of intentional, structured psychedelic use as “psychedelic-assisted therapy,” regardless of whether it’s done with a licensed therapist or not. This is confusing because traditionally, “therapy” is performed by a licensed mental health professional. That means it’s up to you to determine whether psychedelic-assisted therapy requires the presence of a licensed mental health professional or not (i.e. the level of support you are seeking). Other synonyms for these types of therapeutic, structured psychedelic experiences are: ceremony, dosing session, journey, program. The same conundrum applies to words like psychedelic guide, facilitator, and tripsitter, which also tend to be used interchangeably.
While we do have both licensed mental health professionals and other individuals with mental health-related experience in our network, facilitators do not work in the scope or capacity of a licensed mental health or medical professional when engaging in this work. You can learn more about the background and qualifications of our network of facilitators here.
This is a great question and one that many people have. In an effort to paint a complete picture of what the process entails, we’re going to direct you to an article we wrote entitled: The Psychedelic Therapy Process: A Step-By-Step Guide.
The short answer is: it depends. For some clients, it can take multiple ceremonies over time to sustain the outcomes they seek; however, the amount of progress one can make with a single intentional ceremony is quite remarkable.
We always advise our clients to approach this work one ceremony at a time. The most important thing is approaching each ceremony with care and reverence–fully honoring the preparation and integration processes, as this is where so many people fall short. In other words, fully immersing yourself into the preparation and integration process is what allows you to maximize the value and impact of a single ceremony. Many of our clients do elect to come back for additional ceremonies anywhere from 1 to 12+ months after their last journey. It’s important to recognize that healing is a lifelong journey and each ceremony brings us closer and closer to our true nature. Ultimately, our goal is for clients to sustain their desired state of being without requiring psychedelic medicine.
It depends on the medication, the psychedelic substance, and which facilitator you work with. All participants go through a health screening process with their facilitator to determine which medications, if any, will need to be discontinued prior to ceremony.
When considering a psilocybin ceremony (which is what most clients are seeking), it’s helpful to think about prescription medication in 5 distinct categories:
Dangerous: These are medications like lithium and Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs).
Potentially Blunts Effects: These are medications that have a serotonergic method of action like SSRIs, SNRIs, and SPARIs.
Potentially Intensifies Effects: These are medications like Tricyclic Antidepressants (TCAs)
Temporarily Cessate: These are medications for things like ADHD, pain, sleep, and anxiety.
Non-Issue: These are medications for things like thyroid, viral infections, and beta blockers.
In general, it is preferable for your body to be free of substances and your mind to be as clear as possible heading into a psychedelic ceremony. If you’re curious whether your specific medication has any potential contraindications, we encourage you to contact us
Intentional psychedelic use has been shown to help treat a wide variety of conditions. If you’re curious about the scientific and anecdotal healing potential of psychedelics, we suggest you check out our article titled: Which Diseases Can be Treated with Psychedelics?
We also suggest checking out our testimonials to get a better idea of what participants who’ve been through our programs have to say.
Ultimately, we don’t make any claims about treatment outcomes and you should be extremely wary of any providers that make guarantees around results and success rates.
If you have something intentional that you seek, the answer is yes! No reason is too big or too small–all are valid so long as they are coming from a place of truth and authenticity. Some clients are looking to address a mental/emotional health diagnosis and others are seeking self-exploration–one reason is not more valid than the other.
Our service is 100% legal; however, possessing psychedelics in the United States is federally illegal. On a state and city/county level, legality hinges on the local drug laws and whether decriminalization measures have been passed. As of June 1st, 2023, Psychedelics have been decriminalized in the following areas:
- State of Oregon
- State of Colorado
- Oakland, CA
- Santa Cruz, CA
- Arcata, CA
- San Francisco, CA
- Ann Arbor, MI
- Washtenaw County, MI
- Hazel Park, MI
- Washington D.C.
- Sommerville, MA
- Cambridge, MA
- Northampton, MA
- Seattle, WA
Decriminalization is significant because it means that law enforcement will not use taxpayer dollars to prosecute drug offenses. This is significant because most drug charges happen at the state level (not federal). Ultimately, you’ll need to use your discretion and evaluate the level of risk you feel comfortable taking in pursuit of your healing.
If you’re interested in scheduling a consultation with one of our concierges, we can usually get you booked same-day. At the conclusion of your consultation call, you’ll be introduced to 3 facilitators that meet your needs.
If you’re interested in scheduling a ceremony or microdosing program with one of the facilitators we’ve referred you to–you’ll coordinate scheduling with your facilitator directly. Please note that facilitators are typically booked out about 1 month for ceremonies. This allows ample time for preparation, which is an essential part of the process. If you have specific timing in mind for your ceremony, our concierges can help you determine which facilitators are available.
All participants must be at least 18 years of age. At this time facilitators are unable to work with minors.
Yes; however, it depends on your overall health status. All facilitators employ a health screening to help ensure client fitness before providing services. The primary health considerations with older clients are cardiac-related or respiratory-related issues and blood pressure.
Yes. At this point in time, we don’t have any facilitators in our network who will work with folks diagnosed with Schizophrenia or psychosis. Additionally, severe cardiac or respiratory issues may preclude you from participating. If you are uncertain whether your condition applies, we encourage you to contact us.
Yes! We encourage you to include your therapist in the process. Many of the facilitators in our network will work in tandem with your therapist (provided both you and your therapist consent). Typically this means the therapist is involved with the preparation and integration work while your guide would facilitate the actual plant medicine ceremony.
No, neither our services nor our programs are in any way related to clinical trials.
The potential for a “bad trip” is an inevitable part of moving forward with any sort of psychedelic use. From our perspective, it’s important to differentiate between a “bad trip” and an adverse experience. A bad trip is typically defined as a challenging or difficult experience while being under the influence of a hallucinatory substance such as psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, ayahuasca, or even cannabis. Alternatively, an adverse experience is a truly traumatic event while under the influence of psychedelics i.e. facilitator abuse, neglect, sexual assault, violence, etc. As you can see, there is a clear distinction between the two.
Discomfort is common with psychedelics because you are not in control of what comes up, which often results in facing your fears and confronting the unsavory aspects of yourself head on. It’s safe to assume that anything you’ve repressed over the years will come bubbling up to the surface. If you ask the most experienced psychonaut if they’ve had uncomfortable trips, 100% of them will say yes.
The key here is understanding that we don’t step into a ceremonial plant medicine experience because it’s fun–we do it because it’s rewarding. Ironically enough, these challenging experiences are what expand our comfort zone and ultimately provide us with increased strength and confidence in our ability to resource from within.
The best way to mitigate the chances of a bad trip is to adequately prepare for the upcoming psychedelic experience, which is why having an experienced facilitator by your side is so important. The preparation process starts by reframing what a bad trip is: “good” and “bad” are arbitrary labels we assign to our experiences. And generally, people use “bad” to describe discomfort or pain. But like a weightlifter who endures temporary discomfort to build muscle, so too can a journeyer endure temporary discomfort to receive long-term benefits.
From there, your facilitator will arm you with a series of tools, techniques, and frameworks to use when navigating altered states of consciousness. So if you do find yourself at a challenging inflection point during the journey, you have the resources to help yourself work through it. And obviously the facilitator is there in-person to help on the day of your ceremony as well.
No. Each experience is entirely unique to you and your intentions. In a plant medicine ceremony, you get what you need, not what you think you need. This is only possible because of the innate intelligence of the psilocybin-containing mushrooms. In other words, we can guarantee that you’ll have a rewarding experience that is custom tailored to you and your unique needs–we just don’t know exactly how that will manifest.
To be clear, neither you nor the facilitator are in control of how the experience goes. Facilitators are there to foster a safe, non-judgmental, supportive presence for whatever spontaneously arises in the experience.
This is a challenging question to answer as it depends on how we define and measure ‘success.’ However, what we can say is that nearly all clients get some sort of benefit out of their journey—we just don’t know exactly how that benefit will manifest and to what extent. That’s because the independent variable that has the largest effect on this treatment’s success is: you.
All of our clients go through the same program; however, they don’t all get the same results. Simply put, the magnitude of your healing is in direct proportion to the amount of inner work that you’re willing to commit to.
Although these statistics aren’t directly tied to our program, we’ve analyzed several studies which indicate success rates of psychedelic-assisted therapy ranging from 65.8% to 72%.
This depends on the specifics of your unique interpersonal relationship and your individual intentions. There are pros and cons to journeying solo vs with your partner. Because this is a nuanced topic, we’re going to refer you to a podcast episode we recorded titled: Should I Journey Solo, with a Partner, or in a Group Setting?
No. The preparation phase is integral to the healing process. We’ve deliberately included a minimum of two preparation sessions with each ceremonial program. This part of the program is designed to help you build rapport with your facilitator and to help you get the most out of your ceremony.
At the highest level, the facilitator is there to ensure you feel fully supported taking a plunge into the unknown. The role of the facilitator is to lead you through the preparation and integration phases, as well as the in-person ceremony itself. The facilitator will help you manage expectations, get clear on personal intentions, and determine logistics like dosage, setting, and addressing potential contraindications. The facilitator will arm you with the appropriate tools and frameworks to use when navigating altered states of consciousness.
The facilitator’s role is also to hold a safe, supportive, non-judgemental space where you feel comfortable exploring the depths of your own being. A good facilitator is one who is able to mirror you back to yourself without projecting any of their own needs, wants, beliefs, or desires onto you. Ultimately you can specify your desired level of engagement with your facilitator directly. We’ve recorded a podcast episode that specifically details the role of a psychedelic facilitator.
Most clients seeking services like ours are desiring to work through personal, mental and emotional issues that have been suppressed for a long time (i.e. anxiety, depression, PTSD, addiction, etc.). The idea of releasing and confronting these parts of ourselves can be very intimidating, and often too uncomfortable to bear without external, professional support. Plus the logistics behind how to actually go about using psychedelics to heal and overcome these diagnoses are very unclear to most clients. Your facilitator will provide the guidance and support you need to engage with psychedelic medicine in a safe and meaningful way.
Each of the facilitators in our network is hand selected based on their unique experience, presence, and intuitive abilities. Our network consists of professional facilitators with a variety of backgrounds such as:
- PhD in Psychology
- Certified psychedelic integration coaches
- Retreat facilitators
- Doctors of Acupuncture
- Rehabilitation Counselors
Regardless of background, each facilitator is held to the same standards when it comes to the experience and expertise requirements to join our network. In fact, our facilitators are held to higher standards than those required for state licensure. To learn more about what makes our network of facilitators qualified, please visit Our Network page.
We highly recommend the use of an experienced facilitator for first-time journeyers and those seeking transformational outcomes. There’s a lot more that goes into therapeutic psychedelic use besides just consuming the substance. In fact, most of our clients don’t feel comfortable taking psychedelic substances without professional guidance and support. That’s partially because the logistics behind how to actually go about using psychedelics to heal and overcome mental health diagnoses are very unclear to most clients.
In addition, most clients seeking services like ours are desiring to work through personal, mental and emotional issues that have been suppressed for a long time (i.e. anxiety, depression, PTSD, addiction, etc.). The idea of releasing and confronting these parts of ourselves can be very intimidating, and often too uncomfortable to bear without external, professional support.
Once you’ve been through the process with a guide, you may feel comfortable moving forward on your own. However, this is going to be person and situation specific. Someone with a large amount of unresolved trauma for instance, likely wouldn’t want to do a high-dose journey on their own even once they understand the process as there is a high potential for disorientation, discomfort and destabilization. Alternatively, if you already consider yourself to be well and looking for personal betterment, there’s a much higher likelihood that you could learn the ropes with a guide and then take those tools and begin implementing them on your own in self-guided journeys. We’ve seen some clients explore on their own after their first ceremony and others come back to continue work with their facilitator.
We’ve set the standard for what the facilitator vetting process entails. In order to become a part of our network, facilitators must:
- Must complete a facilitator training program or apprenticeship
- Must pass a criminal background check
- Must have personal experience journeying with psychedelics themselves
- Must complete a series of interviews to screen out potential psychological issues
- Must have their own private practice
- Must have 2+ years professional experience or a minimum of 20+ ceremonies facilitated
- Must be actively engaged in their own healing process (i.e. therapy, coaching, etc.)
- Must complete an application to verify their standard operating procedures
- Must submit two letters of recommendation from professional colleagues
- Must submit two client references that we independently verify
- Must commit to the North Star Ethical Pledge
- Must commit to being independently reviewed by clients to ensure standards are upheld
- Must agree to leave the network if service standards aren’t upheld
In fact, our facilitators are held to significantly higher standards than those required for state licensure. To learn more about what makes our network of facilitators qualified, please visit Our Network page.
Although we extensively vet each of the facilitators in our network, we recognize that they are human and humans aren’t perfect. We can’t control the behavior of facilitators, but we can provide recourse for facilitators who are acting without integrity. In order to ensure that facilitators in our network are continuing to provide quality care, we empower clients to rate their facilitator using a standardized scorecard following their work together. This is how we build recourse into our network. Any facilitator who violates our code of conduct or ethical standards will be dropped from the network. This way, you can move forward with the confidence that your facilitator has a clean track record–or else they wouldn’t be in our network.
It’s also important to note that a facilitator who’s a good fit for someone else, may not be a good fit for you and vice versa. We do everything we can to make sure our network is filled with facilitators whom we would feel comfortable sending our friends and family to. Ultimately, you are responsible for making a selection of a service provider and determining whether he/she/they are appropriate for you.
If you’re an experienced facilitator looking to join our network, please visit the Join Our Network page and complete the application to get the vetting process started.
The answer to this question will depend on the capacity in which you want to serve. There are several different tracks to becoming a psychedelic guide or facilitator and each one has different requirements. In order to understand the various paths, we suggest you read our article titled How Can I Become a Psychedelic Guide or Facilitator.
We are based in the U.S. and have a network of facilitators all over the country. Check out our locations page to see if we have a facilitator in your area. Even if we don’t have a facilitator in your state, they will happily travel to you or you’re welcome to travel to them. Our goal is to provide convenient care in the comfort of your own home. Please note that most facilitators charge travel fees when serving clients outside of a certain radius.
The ceremonies take place in private residences. The vast majority of our clients elect to do the sessions in their own home; however, they can also be done in a rented residence. In addition, some of our facilitators have the capacity to host. Ultimately, the most important considerations when choosing a suitable location is that the space is private, safe, and comfortable.
The preparation and integration sessions are done remotely via Zoom, but the plant medicine ceremony itself is always done in person. There is no substitute for the in-person presence and support of your experienced facilitator.
This is a highly personal decision and the answer depends on your unique situation. That said, most of our clients choose to work with psilocybin, also known as magic mushrooms. However, we have facilitators in our network that will sit with nearly any psychedelic substance. For more information on the various medicines, we’d suggest reading our complete Guide on How to Choose the Right Psychedelic Substance.
The only state in which facilitators can provide medicine is Colorado. For sessions taking place outside of Colorado, the client is responsible for sourcing their own psychedelic medicine. Thankfully, sourcing is getting easier with more states and municipalities decriminalizing psychedelics.
Clients generally source from four different categories:
- Friends, family, people they personally know
- Growing their own medicine with a mushroom cultivation kit
- Finding a US-based online retailer
- Local stores, churches, and delivery services.
It’s worth noting that the local stores, churches and delivery services tend to be located in decriminalized areas like D.C., Ann Arbor, and Oakland. More of these online and local vendors are popping up daily. While some of these vendors may be legitimate, please note that many scam sites are also popping up, so we recommend exercising extreme caution before purchasing anything online. Our Concierge Team can provide more information about sourcing options during a consult call.
We are able to assist within the scope of harm reduction by providing you with additional educational resources on how to source safely. Please note that sourcing is unique to you and in order to better assist in this process we encourage you to book a consultation with one of our Psychedelic Medicine Concierges.
There are several at-home test kits available to help you test your substance for safety and potency. There are two types of tests we suggest in the spirit of harm reduction and safety:
- Reagent Tests – These tests help ensure that the substance in question is what you think it is. These tests are intended for medicines that are synthesized in a lab– to test plant/fungal material like psilocybin, you’ll need to use the quantitative tests linked below.
- Quantitative Tests – These tests measure the potency of your medicine to help you determine the appropriate dosage. These are especially important when working with psychedelics as potency is highly variable.
For specific recommendations on reputable companies that sell these test kits, check out our article The Best Purity Test Kits For Psychedelic Therapy Safety.
Not really. While there are differences in effects and potency from strain to strain, the most important thing is that you are consuming psilocybin-containing mushrooms. It is beneficial if you know the strain you’re getting as this will help inform dosage. Many of our clients choose to sit with Golden Teachers or a similar strain. For more information, check out our article The Best Mushroom Strain For Psilocybin-Assisted Therapy.
Dosage is specific to each client and intention. Your facilitator will help you navigate dosage while empowering you to make the final decision over what you put inside your body. In general, most journeyers are sitting with anywhere from 2-7 grams of psilocybin-containing mushrooms in a ceremonial setting. Alternatively, dosages for microdosing range from 0.05 to 0.5 grams.
In general, they are extremely safe; however, psychedelics aren’t for everyone (we’ll elaborate who should avoid psychedelics in the question below). To date, there are no cases of fatality directly linked to biological over-absorption of psychedelics that we know of. That said, the safest way to engage with psychedelics is with a professional facilitator given the high level of safety protocols put in place to protect both the journeyer and the facilitator.
A therapeutic psychedelic experience is always tailored to your specific needs, automatically ensuring proper dosing and a healthy setting. In preparation for the journey, facilitators will carefully screen your family history and personal medical history, as well as current emotional circumstances to assess the safest route for your journey.
However, as with anything in life, there are risks associated with using psychedelics, which we’ll address in the question below. We’ve also written an article titled How Safe Are Psychedelics? What Are The Risks?
Psychedelics can be potentially destabilizing and result in mental, emotional or spiritual distress. However, this is often temporary and is a direct result of the psychedelic method of action–they bring about temporary mental and physiological changes that alter your state. This is why professional support is so important.
That said, there are several factors that greatly increase the risks associated with psychedelic use:
- Cardiovascular conditions and respiratory illnesses
- Bipolar disorder
- Suicidal ideation
- Antidepressants and other pharmaceutical medications
- Improper set and setting
We’ve written two articles that delve into this topic in greater detail:
If you’re unsure whether or not psychedelics would be a good fit for you, we suggest booking a consultation with one of our concierges
While this possibility exists, we’ve never seen a client become addicted to psychedelics. Ironically enough, one of the common reasons clients reach out to us is to work through substance use disorder.
Psilocybin, especially in high doses, produces effects that are so profound, and typically uncomfortable, that there’s no desire to consume again after a high dose journey—at least not for several weeks/months. The common sentiment after a high-dose experience is something along the lines of “Well that was intense and I don’t need to do that again for a while—if ever.” Additionally, microdoses can be started or stopped at any time without any sort of withdrawal symptoms.
It depends on which program–we’ll outline the costs for each below:
Microdosing Program: This program costs $850 for 4x sessions with your facilitator. You can find the complete description of what’s included by visiting the Microdosing Program Page.
Ceremonial Program: This program price varies depending on your income tier. In an effort to make psychedelic-assisted therapy available to as many people as possible, our network of facilitators offer income-based pricing tiers ranging from $1,500 to $4,000+. Higher priced tiers directly offset the financial hurdles for lower tier categories and sponsorship programs, so that everyone has access to psychedelic healing. You can find the complete breakdown of the pricing tiers and a description of what’s included by visiting the Ceremonial Program Page.
If you have a group of two or more, facilitators offer a group pricing discount (on average 25% for each person) which is finalized by your facilitator depending on group size.
Yes, most facilitators offer discounts to repeat clients; however, they have full discretion over whether a discount is applied and what the discount percentage is.
Yes, some facilitators in our network offer financial assistance in the form of sponsorships and discounts for qualifying individuals. Financial assistance programs are intended for those on fixed incomes, student stipends, unemployment, disability social security, and/or members of the BIPOC community. To see if you qualify, please contact our support team.
About Psychedelic Passage
Psychedelic Passage was founded in 2019. Collectively, our facilitators have been doing this work for decades. You can read more about us here.
Our network of guides has facilitated over 750+ journeys through Psychedelic Passage.
Our concierge team is made up of individuals who are highly knowledgeable about psychedelics and have a passion for helping others navigate their healing process. They’ll be able to answer any questions that you have and provide clarity on the psychedelic therapy process and tangible steps on how to move forward.
Our concierges have a weekly continuing education requirement to ensure that they are up to date on all of the happenings in the emerging psychedelic landscape. They’ve also been trained to take into account over 20 different variables surrounding your needs, wants, and preferences in order to pair you with the ideal facilitator.
In short, because we provide the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’ll get connected to a facilitator you can actually trust. We serve as an independent body that moderates the network of facilitators who all have their own private practice, which means we can advocate for clients without a conflict of interest. To our knowledge, no other organization employs the unique combination of independent concierges, a pre-vetted network of facilitators, and recourse for facilitators who violate our code of conduct.
In a time where anyone can claim to be a “facilitator” due to a lack of regulation – how do you know who you can trust? This situation creates an imbalance of power that puts you at risk if you don’t know how to properly qualify a potential guide. That’s why we took it upon ourselves to curate this network of pre-vetted facilitators–so you no longer have to guess who’s legitimate. Because we’re facilitators ourselves, we know what makes a qualified guide.
We’ve been doing this work since 2019 and our network of facilitators has successfully facilitated over 750+ ceremonies. We’re proud to say that the microdosing and ceremonial programs we’ve designed actually result in transformation for those who earnestly engage in the process.
We are always looking to connect with individuals who want to help further our mission. If you are interested in joining our network as a facilitator, please visit the Join Our Network page and complete the application to get the vetting process started.
If you’re interested in joining our organization to help with operations, admin, content or something else, please contact us with your resume, interests, and any other information about you.
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