The title of this article is deceptive. Psychedelics and plant medicine did not only give me a career as a therapist. They gave me an entire life path, and utterly rearranged my worldview in ways that continue to deepen and infuse every aspect of my work and inner life.
Growing up in the affluent hills of Portland, Oregon, drugs were never far away. After embarking on a teenage cannabis odyssey at the age of 15, I quickly graduated to psilocybin mushrooms, which, as most readers will know, grow plentifully in the Pacific Northwest.
Finding them was never the hard part. The hard part, I would learn, was ensuring that the experience was energetically contained, safe, and grounded in some form of ritualistic container - set and setting - fundamental concepts that my adolescent brain regrettably did not yet fully grasp.
I recall one pivotal mushroom journey that I embarked on with a group of friends at the tender age of 16. Having had one or two fantastic experiences previously, I was...