Pittsburgh has a unique landscape, with Point State Park’s fountain at its epicenter, one can look across the Ohio River at rolling hills of brick neighborhoods. Behind you, where the river splits, you’ll find modest skyscrapers and lots of neon lights.
It has a research-driven economy, but being heavily federally funded, there aren’t many opportunities for psychedelics to get any attention. The residents, per usual, have taken it upon themselves to bring the psychedelic scene to the city.
The psychedelic Club of Pittsburgh is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing knowledge and a community to those looking for psychedelic support. They have events ranging from social networking, psychedelic peer support groups, and even a newsletter to share artist spotlights, recommended readings and legislation news.
Cognistx, an AI strategy company, has settled in Pittsburg to work with MagicMed, a Canadian biotech firm, to develop an AI platform that can accelerate the data processing done in psychedelic work.
This allows them to discover which substances have the most efficacy, and their possible side effects. Even with legal barriers, the second psychedelic renaissance is finding its way to the Pittsburg community.
We have already discussed the benefits of psychedelic experiences and legislation on psilocybin and psychedelic assisted therapy in Pennsylvania, now we’ll explore what it means to have a therapeutic psychedelic experience, and how you can find safe, legal psychedelic support in Pittsburgh.
Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy vs Traditional Talk Therapy
There are some important distinctions to make when discussing different forms of healing. Psychedelic-assisted therapy and talk therapy both legally involve a therapist with mental health licensure.
Talk therapy is based on learning coping and healing methods, often combined with daily antidepressant prescriptions. This includes extensive discussions about emotionally charged material in an attempt to work through them.
Sometimes people find it can be hard to instill change in their current state, or may recognize issues without being able to change them. When this happens, a guided psychedelic experience could be the powerful event needed to offer a new perspective and fresh insight, when traditional methods have failed.
Psychedelic substances work on many levels, first they interact with serotonin receptors in our brain, causing feelings of euphoria, hallucinations, and strong emotions. An increase in blood flow also increases and reduces activity in different areas of the brain, which cause a unique state of consciousness.
In this state of mind, one may find themselves reliving childhood memories, encountering the divine, and beyond. This powerful and enlightening inward journey is the jumpstart many people find they need in order to bring new fresh insight and perspective to their long standing problems.
With that being said, a good psychedelic facilitator will have pre and post trip conversations to greatly improve the chances of an enduring positive impact on your life. They will know how to prepare for a healing journey, have you write down your intentions, and answer any questions you have along the way.
Afterwards, they should aid in integrating your newfound knowledge into your everyday life. During your psychedelic experience, they will ensure a safe and conscious space for you. Some people like to have their journey in silence, others may find comfort in voicing their thoughts.
Despite what you may think, a guide or facilitator has no active part in a therapeutic psychedelic experience unless there is immediate danger. Their main goal at this time is your comfort and safety.
Oregon and Colorado are the only states where psychedelic substances are legal for therapeutic use with a mental health professional, with other states like Masaschusetts and Michigan at various levels of decriminalization.
That leaves many states with limited options for guided psychedelic healing. The word therapy comes with legal connotations involving licensure, however therapeutic means a healing experience of the body or mind, which has some leniency.
While the rest of the country waits to catch up, knowledgeable psychedelic facilitators offer their services. Their expertise comes from years of experience with the substances personally and in facilitating transformative journeys for others.
Since they have forgoed mental health licensure, they are able to be present during your psychedelic experience without any legal risk. Talk therapy has gripped the mental health world for a while, but recent research shows psychedelics offer significant symptom relief in prevalent issues like depression, PTSD, and addiction, especially when all else fails.
The Role of Set and Setting in Psychedelic Therapy
Ingesting a psychedelic substance does not guarantee a transformative healing experience. They set up the proper conditions in your body and mind, but ultimately it’s interaction with the set and setting determines the trajectory of the journey.
By set we refer to your internal weather, so to speak. Are you feeling like a hopeless dark cloud looms over you, or are you able to enter the experience with an open heart and mind? Psychedelics can amplify these preexisting emotions.
Setting concrete intentions can help you clear your mind and be receptive to what the experience has to teach you. Regardless of why you choose to have a healing journey, make sure your state of mind at that time allows you to be vulnerable.
Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder diagnoses are some instances where psychedelics won’t be for you. Otherwise, having the right frame of mind is one important step in mitigating the chances of a bad trip.
The setting refers to the environment and people present during your journey. Having a controlled setting is important because environmental factors can influence your experience more than in a normal state of mind.
This is why we caution against having a loved one present for your psychedelic journey. Their presents may direct the theme of the experience towards your relationship with them instead of your relationship with yourself.
Transformative experiences often come with powerful emotional release that may be alarming to someone who cares about you, and it can be hard for them not to intervene.
An experienced guide will hold a conscious space for you to have an uninterrupted, completely personal inward healing journey. They know what works best, what’s to be expected, and when intervention is necessary.
Where To Find Legal Psychedelic Experiences in Pittsburg 2023
Currently there are two choices for those who want to have a therapeutic psychedelic journey of their own: ketamine clinics and guided psychedelic journeys with Psychedelic Passage.
1. Ketamine Clinics
Traditionally, ketamine has been used in hospitals as a general anesthetic, and therefore has been extensively studied. In moderate to high doses it has psychedelic effects, which led to it becoming a FDA-approved therapeutic drug.
While it does induce an altered state of consciousness, it is slightly different from a traditional psychedelic. It gets its therapeutic nature from its dissociative effects and calming effect on the nervous system.
From these, we’re able to view our issues from a detached, third person point of view. This perspective can help us break patterns or gain insights, especially when past treatment has failed.
So why is it that almost half of our clients have come to us after failed ketamine treatment or short-term effects? The drug itself is not to blame, it boils down to the unregulated therapeutic support that accompanies the experience.
The drug administration itself is regulated, but that’s unfortunately it. This means that you could be left alone in a room for the duration of your trip, or have a nurse sit with you who has no knowledge of how to support you. If you are seeking out a ketamine clinic, make sure you do the appropriate research to ensure you receive the support you deserve.
2. Guided Psychedelic Journeys with Psychedelic Passage
At Psychedelic Passage, we’ve done the research for you. We have accumulated a pre-vetted network of psychedelic facilitators across the country to help you find your perfect guide.
We offer a 5 week program that arms you with all the tools you need to have a safe, transformative psychedelic experience. This includes preparation and integration support as well as in-person ceremonial support.
Since we can’t supply for you, you have complete control over choosing the right substance for you. We understand how personal a healing journey can be, which is why we will come to you, letting you journey from the comfort of your own home.
Find Your Next Psychedelic Journey in Any Major Pittsburg Area
- Mount Washington
- Perry North & South
- Mount Nebo
- Lincoln Place
Explore How It Feels To Be Connected
Learning about transformative healing is daunting, but should also feel empowering and exciting. If you still have an itch for knowledge, we welcome you to visit our resource page. We’re always adding new educational articles and podcasts!
If your itch is a little harder to scratch, and you’re interested in embarking on a therapeutic psychedelic journey, book a consultation with us. This 30-minute phone call lets you see what we’re all about, person to person.
We believe in accessibility for everyone, and our income-based pricing and BIPOC and low-income funds ensure we can bring powerful healing to anyone who needs it. As always, stay safe, be mindful, and radiate love.