In this November’s election, Measure 109 faced serious opposition. Fortunately, the city of Bend was part of the 11 counties that opted in favor of psilocybin use. Oregon, one of the nation’s leading states in psychedelic reform, is moving full force to open psilocybin clinics in 2023.
In a previous article, we covered the current legislation of psychedelic therapy in Oregon. Today, the city of Bend takes the stage. With legal psilocybin therapy on the horizon, residents should be equipped with the necessary tools to qualify a psychedelic facilitator, guide, or therapist.
What exactly is the role of a facilitator and how can prospective journeyer’s identify the level of support that is necessary for their specific experience? Perhaps of most interest, how can residents of Bend, Oregon find legal therapeutic psychedelic experiences near them, right now?
What Qualifies a Psychedelic Therapist?
Though we’ve previously discussed the qualities you should look for in a psychedelic therapist, it’s important that we briefly review those today. We should first clarify the difference between a psychedelic therapist and a facilitator/ guide.
In its strictest terms, a psychedelic therapist refers to a licensed mental health practitioner that offers guidance through the preparation and integration phases of a psychedelic experience. Some are also present during the psychedelic journey.
However, many therapists aren’t willing to lose their license due to the current illegality of psychedelics. This is where a psychedelic facilitator or guide steps in. Facilitators and guides do the exact same work, only they don’t have a license to conduct therapy which gives them the more reign to sit in on your psychedelic experience.
Providers in any of these roles should display very specific qualities. The first and arguably most in any psychedelic therapist or facilitator is that they have personal experience with psychedelics. In order to understand and support a psychedelic journeyer, a facilitator must have many first-hand experiences using psychedelics.
In order to be qualified as a psychedelic facilitator or therapist to many clients, a practitioner has to thoroughly understand the emotional, physical, and thematic commonalities that span across all psychedelic experiences. This helps them identify a journeyer’s needs and it helps them equip the journey with healthy expectations.
Another vital factor lies in resonating with the healing philosophy of your facilitator. Ask them about their motivations for entering this field, how do they plan on supporting you through both the tranquil and challenging parts of your experience?
You should acknowledge their responses while also assessing the level of safety and openness you feel when in their presence. The time you spend with this person may very well be some of the most vulnerable and raw moments of your life. Thus, you should feel comfortable expressing yourself freely around them.
Of equal importance, a qualified facilitator should encourage your personal accountability in the process because they acknowledge that the true healer exists within you. A facilitator should never try to intentionally interfere with the trajectory of your experience unless serious physical or emotional needs call for it.
This is because an experienced facilitator should understand that the insights a journeys comes to during their experience is and should be unique to them and their specific circumstances. Your psychedelic guide should communicate empathetically, honestly, and openly, at all times. If there’s doubts you can’t seem to settle, listen to your intuition and move onto another facilitator.
What is The Role of a Psychedelic Guide?
As psychedelics continue to rise in popularity, there seems to be a growing misconception surrounding the role of a “guide”. The term itself can be pretty misleading, it leads us to envision a psychedelic professional who guides a ceremony through verbal cues, prompts, and/or guided visualizations.
This however, couldn’t be further from the truth. As we mentioned earlier, one of the qualities you should look out for when choosing the right psychedelic guide, is their disposition for allowing you to take personal accountability over your healing journey. After all, what is self-actualization without account of the self?
So if a psychedelic guide doesn’t lead our journey, what do they do? Well, psychedelic guides serve as an anchor to the present moment during your journey. Deep seated traumas and fears often surface during a psychedelic ceremony and it’s common for journeyers to feel out of sorts, to say the least.
A facilitator’s extensive experience with these medicines allow them to hold a space that’s conducive to healthy and safe catharsis. In a psychedelic experience, it’s almost as if a journeyer is borrowing the nervous system of their facilitator. Their groundedness is energetically contagious and it journeys to feel safe in surrendering to the experience.
A psychedelic facilitator doesn’t allow the emotions of a journeyer to influence their presence because they understand their role as an anchor to solidity and stability. A psychedelic facilitator helps to prepare the journeyer for the experience.
They inquire about the client’s personal and medical history to help them more clearly align with an intention for the experience. They also assist in integration. Integration is one of the most important parts of this process. A journeyer can be exposed to incredible, new perspectives on their trip.
However, if they don’t have the proper support following their journey, it’s likely that these new perspectives will be overridden by old, comfortable habits. Integration helps to ensure a healthy and fluid transition between these altered states of consciousness.
Is it Really Necessary to Hire a Psychedelic Guide?
Is hiring a psychedelic guide a must for embarking on a psychedelic experience? No, it’s not. Again, this is because you are the primary reason for your personal transformation. However, a psychedelic guide can contribute much value to your journey.
As we briefly explained, a psychedelic guide leads you through the preparation process for your journey. They ensure that this is a safe option for you, physically, mentally, and emotionally, by conducting a health screening before deciding to move forward.
Since qualified psychedelic guides have been witness to many psychedelic scenarios, they’re able to share their knowledge with you, equipping you with all of the necessary expectations for such an experience.
If challenging feelings come up or if you’re faced with an event of ego dissolution, you’ll be aware of what’s going on and you’ll have a much easier time accepting and surrendering to the experience.
A facilitator is also an experienced practitioner of non-judgment. If someone who you know where to tripsit for you, for example, it’s guaranteed that they have preconceived notions about you and your behaviors. This often causes journeyers to feel pressured to adhere to the persona that they adopt when they’re around that person.
This, in most cases, creates very strong internal resistance to the experience. A journey consequently attempts to control themselves and the direction of the journey, which results in immense and overwhelming discomfort.
A facilitator not only helps you to hold yourself accountable for adapting your life to your new perspectives, but they also assist you in navigating the changes that may occur in your personal relationships, as a result of your growth.
So no, you do not need a psychedelic guide to take psychedelic substances. Almost like you don’t need to wear a seatbelt to operate a car, but it sure does help ensure your stability, your safety, and your ease of mind.
Where to Find Legal Psychedelic Experiences Near Bend, Oregon
As of the moment, there are two options for Bend city residents to embark on a therapeutic psychedelic journey: ketamine clinics and guided psychedelic journeys with Psychedelic Passage.
- Ketamine Clinics
Ketamine therapy is a recently developed approach that helps treat treatment-resistant depression and PTSD. Ketamine, however, is not a true psychedelic since it’s classified as an dissociative anesthetic. In fact, ketamine has had a place in our pharmacopeia since the 60’s, used predominantly in hospital operating rooms.
That’s not to say that ketamine’s effects aren’t therapeutic. Ketamine has been the topic of much scientific research for very good reason. Its cognitive effects produce an out-of-body experience, which helps people observe their suffering, their life circumstances, and their intrapersonal relationship, with more empathy and objectivity.
However, in full disclosure, we should note that about 50 percent of our clients come to us due to previous failed ketamine therapy. This is not the fault of the drug itself, but rather the regulations surrounding its therapeutic application. Many ketamine clinics fail to provide proper preparation and integration support.
In fact, very often we receive accounts of a journeyer being left to their own devices, with a nurse practitioner only occasionally coming in to check on their IV. So, if you’re seeking to find a ketamine clinic near you, make certain that you are provided with the necessary support that an experience of this magnitude requires.
- Guided Psychedelic Journeys with Psychedelic Passage
Here, at Psychedelic Passage we provide therapeutic psychedelic experiences with every type of psychedelic medicine. You have full autonomy over every aspect of your journey. This includes not only the medicine you choose to work with, but the environment in which you journey, the pace at which you navigate the process, and of course, the facilitator that you work with.
Not only can you embark on your psychedelic journey from the comfort of your own home, but our carefully curated network of psychedelic facilitators allows you to have a wide range of options. If you choose to engage with our network, you’ll have the freedom to connect with as many facilitators as you feel is needed, until you find the right one.
Our 5 week program was intentionally created to catalyze personal transformation. Our program includes preparation, integration, and in-person ceremonial facilitation. The best part? It is designed in a way that allows facilitators to tailor your experience to your specific needs, goals, and intentions.
Equal access to these ancient medicines is one of our top priorities. That’s why we implemented income-based pricing tiers. So that any person, from any income bracket, can seek the care that they need. We acknowledge the uncertainty and indirection that comes with navigating this fresh space of psychedelics, and it’s why we’ve qualified and thoroughly vetted guides, for you.
Find Your Next Psychedelic Journey in Any Major Bend Area
- Awbrey Butte
- Boyd Acres
- Century West
- Mountain View
- Old Bend
- Old Farm
- Orchard District
- River West
- Southeast Bend
- Southern Crossing
- Southwest Bend
- Summit West
Explore How it Feels to be Connected
With Oregon’s psilocybin regulations in their final stages of composition, we hope that this article has provided you with information that services your healing journey. If you’d like to get connected with our network of psychedelic facilitators, we empower you to book a consultation with us.
Education is the best way to continue promoting the development of strong and supportive therapeutic frameworks. So, if you’d like to learn more about all-things-psychedelic, head on over to our resources page for more informative articles like this one. As always, safe and mindful journeying, fellow psychonauts!