About OmTerra

OmTerra is a forming non-profit created to help foster the promotion, education and outreach for psychedelic therapy.

The Driftless Psychedelic Therapy Symposium
January 27, 28, 29 – Viroqua, WI

The Driftless Psychedelic Therapy Symposium is a three day conference that will focus on the insights gained, integration practices, and beneficial impact on people’s life through the use of psychedelics.

Guiding, Set and Setting
Experiences, Insights
Psychedelic Studies

2017 Presenters

The 2017 Driftless Psychedelic Symposium has assembled world class presenters in the field of psychedelic therapy.



Dennis McKenna, PhD

Author/ Ethnopharmacologist


Dennis McKenna’s professional and personal interests are focused on the interdisciplinary study of ethnopharmacology and plant hallucinogens. He received his doctorate in 1984 from the University of British Columbia, where his doctoral research focused on ethnopharmacological investigations of the botany, chemistry, and pharmacology of ayahuasca and oo-koo-he, two orally-active tryptamine-based hallucinogens used by indigenous peoples in the Northwest Amazon. Dr. McKenna received post-doctoral research fellowships in the Laboratory of Clinical Pharmacology, National Institute of Mental Health, and in the Department of Neurology, Stanford University School of Medicine.  He joined the faculty of the Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of Minnesota in 2001. He is a founding board member of the Heffter Research Institute and serves on the advisory board of non-profit organizations in the fields of ethnobotany and botanical medicines.


Presentation: The Mind(s) of Gaia

Dr. Rosalind Watts

Psilocybin Guide / Imperial College London


Dr Rosalind Watts completed her clinical psychology training at University College London, and after six years of practicing psychotherapy she joined the Imperial College Psilocybin for Depression Study as a therapist ‘guide’. Ros believes that psychedelic treatments can have an important role in changing the way we conceptualize and treat mental health difficulties. Her research includes a qualitative study of patients’ experiences of psychedelic treatment, which informs her current work designing trials alongside Dr Robin Carhart-Harris.


Title: Connected in the Deep: Patients’ Experiences of Psilocybin for Treatment-Resistant Depression

Objective: To identify patients’ perceptions of the value of psilocybin as a treatment for depression

Method: Twenty patients enrolled in an open-label trial of psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression participated in a semi-structured interview at 6-month follow-up. Thematic analysis was used to identify patients’ experiences of the treatment and how it compared with previous treatments.
Results: Two main change processes were identified in relation to the treatment. The first concerned change from disconnection (from self, others and world) to connection, and the second concerned change from avoidance (of emotion) to acceptance. A third theme concerned comparison between psilocybin and conventional treatments. Patients reported that medications and some short-term talking therapies tended to reinforce their sense of disconnection and avoidance, whereas treatment with psilocybin encouraged connection and acceptance.
Conclusions: These results suggest that psilocybin treatment for depression may work via paradigmatically novel means, antithetical to pharmacological interventions and some short-term talking therapies.

Thomas B. Roberts, PhD

Professor Emeritus at NIU, Author


Thomas B. Roberts promotes the legal adaptation of psychedelics for multidisciplinary  cultural uses, primarily their academic and spiritual implications. He formulated Multistate Theory (2013) coined Singlestate Fallacy, mindapps, neurosingularity, metaintelligence, and ideagen, and he named and characterized the Entheogen Reformation (2016). He is a founding member of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, a cofounder of the Council on Spiritual Practices and the International Transpersonal Association, originated the Rising Researcher conference sessions, and launched the celebration of Bicycle Day to commemorate the day that Albert Hofmann first intentionally took LSD.


AB Hamilton College, MA University of Connecticut, PhD Stanford, Roberts is an emeritus professor of educational psychology at Northern Illinois University, where he taught Foundations of Psychedelic Studies as an Honors Program Seminar. Started in 1981 and taught through 2013, it is the world’s first university-cataloged psychedelic course.


Title: Mind Design via Mindapps, Ideagens, and Multistate Theory


How does our appreciation psychedelics expand when we recognize them as one family of mindapps among others and when we value them as ideagens (idea generators)? (1) Insights into emergence, consilience, and the enrichment of other scientific ideas. (2) Mind design — the ability to combine mindapps into novel mindbody states, thus empowering current abilities and discovering new ones. (3) Multistate Theory — a theory that incorporates psychedelics into an overall theory that includes all mindbody states and the mindapps for producing them. How does (enter your favorite topic here) vary from mindbody state to mindbody state?

Wendy Kline, PhD

Purdue University / Grof Library


Wendy Kline, Ph.D, is the Dema G. Seelye Chair in the History of Medicine in the Department of History at Purdue University. Her current research draws on the psychoactive substances research collection in the Purdue university archives which includes the papers of Dr. Stan Grof. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis, in 1998. She is the author of several articles and two books: Bodies of Knowledge: Sexuality, Reproduction, and Women’s Health in the Second Wave (University of Chicago Press, 2010) and Building a Better Race: Gender, Sexuality, and Eugenics from the Turn of the Century to the Baby Boom (University of California Press, 2001). Her third book, on countercultural medicine and women’s health, is under contract with Oxford University Press. She just recently published an article on countercultural midwives in Groovy Science: Knowledge, Innovation, and American Counterculture with University of Chicago Press.


Title: Communicating a New Consciousness: Countercultural Medicine, Transpersonal Psychology, and the Home Birth Movement in the 1970s
This paper draws on the records of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center LSD Training Program Study and the papers of psychiatrist Stan Grof to analyze the unusual but fruitful relationship between countercultural home birth midwives and doctors studying transpersonal psychology. In particular, I investigate the development and use of Stan Grof’s BPM (Basic Perinatal Matrices), used to describe the “peak” experience of LSD, with the stages of birth. Grof worked closely with home birth midwives in the Bay Area of California in the development of his theory, and in turn, the midwives applied his theory to the structure of birth. In this way, the two seemingly disparate groups – midwives and psychedelic researchers – further legitimized the scientific and spiritual components of altered states of consciousness – whether through psychedelics or giving birth.

John Harrison, MA, PSYD(c)

MAPS Ibogaine Researcher / Addiction Specialist


John Harrison M.A., PsyD  has had life experiences ranging from high-altitude mountaineer to massage therapist (at Esalen Institute in Big Sur) , as a Federal fugitive ( from injustice ) followed by a stint as a guest of the US Federal government’s Bureau of Prisons, methadone counselor, Zen Buddhist practitioner, political activist (as an advocate for a fair and just drug policy), Psychologist( with a specialization in Addiction Treatment and Personal Transformation ). John also serves on the Board of Directors for the Global Ibogaine Therapy Alliance ( GITA ), a Gestalt Practice workshop leader, and is a  writer and researcher


Title Realizing Transformation : Addiction as a Passage Toward Personal Empowerment and Freedom


What I have learned after treating and following up with literally hundreds of patient/journeyers the past ten years is that conscious and sustained attention to Continuing Care (Intention and Integration) is the SINGLE best predictor for a successful or positive outcome for those using the psychedelic plant medicine Ibogaine in the treatment of addiction. We will explore the importance of Intention (set and setting) and Integration (follow up) as key (and often overlooked) elements of a comprehensive treatment protocol. We will illustrate the essential elements of an effective Continuing Care program! For so many the ibogaine journey is a life changing, occasionally overwhelming experience that after years of addiction can not only be beautiful and life-changing but also frightening and dramatic! A focused program of Continuing Care will include an acknowledgement of this profound and transformational experience as well as offering a panoply of tools and practices to process, and then to integrate the lessons learned with this sacred plant medicine! We will address the interface between the powerful ibogaine journey (i.e. finding one’s own language to retain and integrate the experience), and what i call addiction treatment 101 (i.e. the development of a strong and nurturing support system, the identification of triggers, the development of coping skills to overcome said triggers, and then proceeding with significant and often difficult lifestyle changes). We will discuss the importance of meeting our patient/clients right where they are while empowering them to assume responsibility for their own healing. Finally I will talk about the unique ibogaine ‘window of well-being’ or ‘afterglow’ the typically 8-12 week period following treatment which opens remarkable access both to our inner angels and demons, along with a newfound facility to fearlessly meet and learn from them!

Anny Ortiz

UW-Madison / Psychedelic Studies


Anny Ortiz is a research associate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she is involved in initiating studies designed to examine the potential of psychedelic medicines for the treatment of depression and anxiety. She brings to this work significant experience working with these treatment modalities in patients with addiction and posttraumatic stress disorder. In particular, while working at Crossroads Treatment Center and Centro Hospitalario Internacional del Pacifico SA, in Baja, Mexico, Anny developed novel intervention strategies that added 5-methoxy- dimethyltryptamine (5-MeO- DMT) to already existing treatment protocols that utilized ibogaine as a detox agent. Anny’s use of 5-MeO-

DMT in this context grew out of her prior experience working as a personal growth advisor for New Summit Academy, a therapeutic boarding school in Costa Rica. This experience impressed upon her the urgent need to identify novel interventions for addiction and mood disorders for individuals who do not adequately respond to even the best holistic intervention programs. Returning to her home state of Sonora, she joined other pioneers in developing methodologies for the sustained harvesting of 5-MeO- DMT from the venom of the Incilius Alvarius toad, which is endemic to northern Mexico, particularly Sonora and the southern reaches of Arizona. With the recent explosion of toad-derived 5-MeO- DMT use and a concomitant plummeting of toad populations, Anny has become increasingly involved in efforts to develop sustainable management plans that can help ensure the continued existence of this unique species of toad in its native habitat.


Title:The Toad Medicine Experience as a catalyst for recovery and positive change: Some initial observations on its application for the treatment of substance dependence and PTSD following Ibogaine detox

Nicholas V. Cozzi, PhD

UW-Madison Pharmacologist


Nicholas is a scientist and educator at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health. He holds a Ph.D. in Pharmacology and a B.S. in Pharmacology and Toxicology, both from the UW-Madison School of Pharmacy. His background and training is in pharmacology, chemistry, and neuroscience. Nick’s research involves the design, chemical synthesis, and testing of substances with central nervous system activity, especially those with psychedelic, antidepressant, or psychostimulant effects. He is interested in how these agents act in the brain to enhance mood, improve cognition, and increase awareness, and in their clinical value for treating addiction, anxiety, depression, post-traumatic fear, and other mental health ailments. As an educator, Dr. Cozzi teaches pharmacology at the University of Wisconsin and he is a frequent guest lecturer at other academic institutions around the United States.


Title: Reports From the Psychedelic Frontier

Mary Porter

Looking Glass Peyote Church of Oregon


Coming soon!


Title: Peyote the Sacrament Crossing Racial Lines for Anyone of Any Race


I will discuss the views as an indigenous human being, the elements of the sacrament and it’s relationship with all human beings. Much of my discussion is based on my 40+ years working with the sacrament, and the few years of being a Federal 501c.

Allan Ajaya, PhD

Psychotherapist / Entheogenic Researcher


Dr. Ajaya has the unique distinction of being both a licensed clinical psychologist and a  Swami. Allan Ajaya or Swami Ajaya, as he is also known, received his PhD from the University of California at Berkeley and was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Wisconsin, Department of Psychiatry. He has served on the graduate faculties of the University of Wisconsin and the Himalayan Institute. He has studied with leading innovators of experiential  psychotherapy including Carl Whitaker, Ron Kurtz (the developer of Hakomi therapy), Arnold Mindell, and David Grove.


In 1972 he was initiated as a Swami in the Himalayan tradition by Swami Rama. This initiation took place in Rishikesh, on the banks of the Ganges, on Shivaratri, a sacred holy day. As Swami Ajaya, he spent years in India studying and teaching yoga and meditation. He has authored and edited several landmark texts that integrate Eastern and Western approaches to healing the whole person. For a complete list of Allan’s books click here.


Dr. Ajaya has also researched the effectiveness of entheogens in releasing dysfunctional patterns in the body-mind. He is currently writing a book that demonstrates how entheogens, self inquiry, and psychotherapy complement one another in releasing identification with the constricted self and opening to being awareness.


Title: Through the Looking Glass: Into the Core Transformational Power of Psychedelics

Bruce Sewick, LCPC, CADC

Therapist, Teacher and Addiction Counselor


Bruce’s interest in mental health started with his exploration of altered states of consciousness in the 70’s while an undergraduate at the University of Illinois (Chicago).  He received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 1974, but due to a weak job market in the field, spent the next two decades in the transportation industry.  His last significant job in transportation was working for General Electric, which funded most of his graduate degree in Clinical Psychology from Roosevelt University, from which he graduated in 1997.   At this point, he changed careers to the mental health and academic fields.  He is currently the Manager of Adult Mental Health at Leyden Family Service and Mental Health Center, where he has been working for 20 years.  He is also adjunct faculty at the College of Du Page -where he teaches a class on the therapeutic use of Psychedelics – and for Online Learning at the City Colleges of Chicago.  He has been lecturing on the therapeutic use of  Psychedelics since MAPS published his Master’s thesis “Psychedelic -assisted Psychotherapy for the Terminally Ill” in 1997.


Title: Treating PTSD with MDMA Assisted Therapy: Psychedelic Catalyzation of Therapeutic Process


The characteristics of MDMA as an adjunct to psychotherapy creates the perfect internal experience to treat PTSD. As opposed to conventional therapy, which suppresses symptoms, this psychedelic modality helps process trauma. The theory and application of this recently approved (for phase III) research should result in MDMA being approved for prescriptive treatment of PTSD in controlled settings by approved therapists.

Erik Storlie, PhD

Author, Zen Teacher


Erik F. Storlie, PhD, entered graduate school at Berkeley in 1962 intending to become a medievalist. Experience with cannabis, peyote, mushrooms, and LSD prompted an interest in Zen and the synergies between meditation and psychedelic medicine.  He began a practice of sitting meditation in 1964 with Shunryu Suzuki in San Francisco, studied with Dainin Katagiri, helping to found the Minnesota Zen Meditation Center, and currently teaches meditation and mindfulness at The University of Minnesota.  His doctoral work focused on awakening experiences in Zen and Puritanism.  Publications include Nothing on my Mind:  Berkeley, LSD, Two Zen Masters, and Go Deep and Take Plenty of Root.


Title: Psychedelics and Meditative Practice:  Two Allies

Robert J. Barnhart

Psychedelic Philanthropist / Film Producer


Robert has a BA in comparative religion from Emory University in Atlanta, GA. He has been a strong advocate for the study of psychoactive materials in spiritual and nontraditional healing practices for many years. He sits on the board of both The Heffter Research Institute and The Multi-Disciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies. He further sits on the board of COSM, supporting the visionary art work of Alex Grey; as well as a board member of The Academy of Chinese Culture and Health Sciences in Oakland, California. Mr. Barnhart is active caring for the well being of our planet’s environmental ecosystem. He has now completed producing the documentary film “A New Understanding: The Science of Psilocybin” about the use of psilocybin medicine in modern healing practices. He currently lives in Austin, Texas where he enjoys being a father to his ten year old daughter.


Title: Grace and Self-Effort in A Psychedelic Life

Katherine MacLean, PhD

Psilocybin Therapist


Katherine MacLean, PhD is the Director of the Psychedelic Education and Continuing Care Program in New York and a trained research scientist with a long-standing interest in the brain and the science of well-being. At the University of California, Davis, Katherine was supported by a NSF research fellowship to study the effects of mindfulness on well-being and brain function. As a postdoctoral research fellow and faculty member at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, she worked with Dr. Roland Griffiths and his team. Her groundbreaking research on psilocybin and personality change suggests that psychedelic medicines may play an important role in enhancing mental health and promoting emotional well-being and creativity throughout the lifespan.


Title: Psilocybin and Personality Change


Katherine will present results from her groundbreaking study on psilocybin and personality change, and discuss how the personality trait of “openness to experience” is key to health and healing across the lifespan.

Nathan Gates, MA, LCPC 

Psychotherapist, Psychedelic Advocate


Nathan W. Gates, MA, LCPC
Private Practice, rural West-Central Illinois

Nathan is an experienced and well trained practitioner of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, as well as other evidence-based contextual psychotherapies, such as Compassion Focused Therapy and applied Relational Frame Theory. He is a member of the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science, a nearly 10,000 member international organization dedicated to alleviating the suffering inherent in the human condition through contextual science. Within ACBS, Nathan has founded a special interest group, the Psychedelic and Non-Ordinary States of Consciounsess SIG, which now has just under 100 professional members. Currently, Nathan is working on developing a paper with ACBS colleagues on the topic of this proposal.

Additionally, Nathan trained in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado. During this time he studied the psychology of meditation, transpersonal theory, ecopsychology, and took an intensive workshop with Dr. Stanislav Grof on holotropic breathwork.


Title: Applying a Contextual Behavior Framework to the Psychedelic Experience for the for the Purposes of Clinical Application, Integration and Study


Contextual Behavioral Science (CBS) is a pragmatic, behavioral approach to language and cognition that lends itself to highly effective psychological interventions across a broad array of human suffering. The most well known clinical application is a therapeutic package known as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). To date, 155 randomized controlled trials have been completed comparing ACT to treatment as usual. Results generally indicate that ACT compares favorably to many other forms of psychological therapy.

A unique feature of ACT is the focus on not only outcome data, but on mediating variables. In other words, we seek to better understand the psychological processes that mediate helpful psychological change.

The focus of ACT is on six particular psychological processes, six manipulable variables that predict positive psychological change. The reason for this proposal is to explain these six variables, and to explore the ways in which they are highly consistent with the psychedelic experience. In doing this, we open up possibilities for better understanding variables that might be important for ongoing psychedelic integration, find new, more psychedelically consistent models for psychedelic supported psychotherapy, and begin to better understand the mechanism by which psychedelic experiences seem to evoke long-term, positive psychological and behavioral change.

The six core processes of ACT, which each have data supporting their efficacy are, in no particular order:
1) Opening and Accepting one’s Experience
2) Becoming more Aware of the Present Moment
3) De-literalizing and distancing from Core Language Processes
4) Expanding Perspective beyond the Content of Here and Now
5) Expanding and Deepening one’s sense of their personal values
6) Making specific, behavioral commitments in the service of one’s values.

The presentation will involve defining and explaining each process, as well as Experiential Avoidance, a core process that research increasingly indicates is implicated in a wide range on psychopathology.

Katinka Hooyer, PhD, MS

Medical Anthropologist / Ayahuasca & DMT


Katinka Hooyer, PhD is a medical anthropologist and postdoctoral research fellow in Family and Community Medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin. She works with veterans, studying their experiences of service, war work and post-traumatic stress in order to identify possible paths for easing personal and social suffering. Her research focuses on alternative and integrative healing, including public art, nature-based and animal-assisted therapy to help heal the wounds of war. Katinka collaborates with Veterans to study how their experiences with alternative therapies transform the soul and provide opportunities to feel more connected to society. As a community-engaged scholar, Katinka uses interactive art to translate research and share social science knowledge with the public.


Title: Beyond Brain Trauma: Insights into the Moral Injury of War and Ritualized Psychedelic Healing of an Iraq Combat Veteran

Contemporary medical understanding of PTSD, with its focus on the biophysiology of trauma, does not capture the spiritual discord, personal disconnect and moral conflict that some veterans suffer after their military service. This phenomenon, moral injury, is experienced as a transgression of deeply held beliefs of what is right and wrong.  Recent research on psychedelics focuses on its therapeutic effect on trauma within the constraints of a mental disorder (PTSD). This can be limiting for veterans who do not have a diagnosis of PTSD or refuse being labeled as mentally disordered.

Instead, we explicitly use moral injury as a frame for scientific inquiry around trauma therapies and psychedelics, specifically the use of ayahuasca and toad-derived 5-MeO- DMT. This is an explorative discussion between a medical anthropologist researching alternative therapies for veterans and a former US paratrooper healing the moral injuries of his 6 deployments to Iraq and Haiti. Through this narrative research we ask, how might psychedelics provide guidance on the “Warrior’s Path” to heal after experiencing the loss, guilt and shame that war work propagates? How is it possible to reclaim the “best version of yourself” (the higher self or soul) after both perpetrating and witnessing military atrocities?

Our hope is to expand the considerations of health outcomes among veterans beyond measurable PTSD symptomology to include spiritual healing. The insights gained through this veteran’s experience with ayahuasca illustrate the power of ritualized psychedelic use to return to a vision of the self as good and to cultivate the free will to choose this version of the self.

Thomas Kingsley Brown, PhD

Ibogaine Researcher


Thomas Kingsley Brown, PhD started his research on ibogaine treatment in November of 2009 when he conducted interviews with patients at Pangea Biomedics in Playas de Tijuana, Mexico and collected data for the purpose of studying changes in Quality of Life for those patients. Hearing about the transformative experiences of these people convinced him that ibogaine’s therapeutic value merited further study. Since 2010 he has been working with the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS, based in Santa Cruz, California, USA) on a Mexico-based observational study of the long-term outcomes for people receiving ibogaine-assisted treatment for substance dependence. That study is complete, and the first research article on the study has been submitted for publication. In 2013, Dr. Brown published a review article on ibogaine treatment in Current Drug Abuse Reviews. His academic background is primarily in chemistry (B.S., University of Pittsburgh and M.S., California Institute of Technology) and anthropology (Ph.D., UCSD). He has long had an interest in altered states of consciousness and in life-changing experiences such as religious conversion. He currently runs an undergraduate research program at the University of California, San Diego and resides in San Diego with his partner and their two sons.


Title: Transformation in Ibogaine Treatment for Substance Dependence



This presentation examines evidence for the occurrence of powerful psycho-spiritual transformations accompanying ibogaine-assisted treatments for opioid dependence.  I will begin with an overview of the first prospective long-term outcomes study of such treatment.  The study, sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) and based on observations of treatments administered at two ibogaine clinics in Baja California, Mexico, used as its primary outcome measure the Addiction Severity Index (ASI).  Data from the ASI and from the Subjective Opioid Withdrawal Scale show that this pharmacologically novel treatment provides for an effective, relatively painless short-term detoxification from opioid dependence, and results in significant long-term reductions in addiction severity.  These results are discussed in detail in a manuscript that has been submitted for publication.  In this presentation, I will briefly present those results and will devote much greater attention to results that are not included in the manuscript.  Specifically, I will discuss qualitative data, particularly narratives and interview materials, as well as data from the States of Consciousness Questionnaire (SOCQ), to put forth evidence for the transformative power of the ibogaine experience.  I will examine the SOCQ data to show the prevalence of mystical-type experiences on the part of study participants, and will present interview and narrative material suggesting that the journey of an individual seeking and undergoing ibogaine treatment for addiction is closely akin to the process of religious conversion.

Jonathan Thompson

Founder of Psychedelic Parenting


Jonathan is Co-Founder (with his wife of 15 years, Nicole Linton) of PyschedelicParenting.org, a resource for building community and family traditions around traditional plant sacraments in the Global North. Their essay “Growing Up Ganja” will appear in the upcoming anthology on cannabis spirituality “One Toke to God.” Jonathan is also the father of 3 Montessouri-educated children, and has been working with plant teachers and contemplative prayer/meditation since 1999. He has a BS in Anthropology from Michigan State University and has spent the last 10 years in management and human resources in the retail and healthcare industry.  Psychedelic Parenting began in 2012, and he began doing podcasts in 2013. Since then, he has spoken or tabled at many conferences across the USA and internationally.


Title: Family Values, Plant Spirituality, and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act


Jonathan’s talk is entitled “Family Values, Plant Spirituality, and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.” In his talk, Jonathan will explore the history of the RFRA, how it has been applied to Entheogenic Religions, and what it takes to be a “legal” entheogenic religion in the USA. We will also delve into recent headlines regarding attempts to challenge the status quo of the RFRA, and why these attempts have mostly fallen short. Finally, we will explore how the Controlled Substances Act and the cultural climate it has created contribute to religious discrimination in the USA and hinder or prevent parents from passing on their spiritual and religious beliefs to their children.

Link Swanson



Link Swanson is a graduate student in philosophy and cognitive science at the University of Minnesota. Link’s work focuses on theories of perception, attention, and multisensory integration. He is specifically interested in how brains distribute semantic meaning across multiple cognitive and perceptual modalities. Link investigates these topics using an interdisciplinary approach that leverages tools from cognitive science, philosophy, psychology, neuroscience, and phenomenology.


Title: Predictive Processing for the Psychedelic Researcher


Predictive processing is a theoretical framework currently emerging from computational and cognitive neuroscience that has recently attracted the attention of researchers from a wide variety of fields—including a growing number of psychedelic researchers. In this talk I introduce predictiveprocessing and explain the key principles that make it an attractive theoretical framework for understanding the properties of psychedelic experiences, including the big question of why these experiences are capable of facilitating such profound and significant psychological changes in the human organism.

Charles Monroe-Kane

Author of Lithium Jesus


I am a Peabody award-winning journalist with over 15 years of on-air radio and production experience. I am also a published author of numerous articles and a memoir (recently published by the University of Wisconsin Press).

I have been podcasting, editing, producing, and interviewing for the national show on public radio, To the Best of Our Knowledge, for 13 years.

I live in Madison, Wisconsin with my lovely wife and two young children and our cat Mr. Jix.


Title: Lithium Jesus – The Pitfalls of Psychedelics without a Guide



I am the author of “Lithium Jesus: A Memoir of Mania” that came out in September of 2016 by the University of Wisconsin Press.


After finding out the voices in my head were not angels from God (I was a teenager Evangelical faith healer in Haiti and in the Philippines who thought my voices compelled me to heal) but instead were a mental illness, I moved to Amsterdam and attempted to heal myself with LSD and later with MDMA. My memoir is not only a journey of having a mental illness but the drugs (legal and illegal) I took to try to heal myself. It is not a cautionary tale. Not a contrived “rock-bottom” narrative arch of addiction. Instead, it is an honest attempt of a young man trying to find his path in the dark. My presentation is not science. It is story.

Robin Mitchell

Psilocybin Therapy for Personal Healing


…just a wayfarer who traveled through the school of hard knocks and came out with tempered joy.


Title: Depression: There and Back Again (One Woman’s Journey)


The story of three psilocybin experiences and the resulting core transformation.

Matt Vogel, MA

Psychedelic Advocacy & Policy Reform


Matt works at Southern Oregon University in Ashland, Oregon.  In addition to coordinating wellness-based programs on campus, he is an instructor for the Psychology Department.  He has presented at several conferences and college campuses on topics such as substance use and college life, harm reduction, psychedelic research, masculinity/gender roles, and prescription drugs.  He enjoys spending time with his kids, good conversations, growing food, basketball, challenging his own views, and hiking.


Title: A Non-Dogmatic Exploration of Psychedelic Dogmatism


Working on a college campus I’ve observed the slow erosion of critical thinking & discourse, and watched the rise of ideologies & anti-free speech sentiments.  How do dogmatic ideologies emerge and develop?  In this session we will examine the benefits of psychedelic research, and pitfalls to explore as the field continues to expand and develop.

2017 Program

Three days of magic in The Driftless region of Wisconsin. The presentations will cover guiding, set & setting, experiences with a focus on insights gained, integration and psychedelic studies. There will also be an open forum for questions and answers and sharing of experiences.




Time: 6:00 PM -10:30 PM


Through the Looking Glass:
Into the Core Transformational Power of Psychedelics
Allan Ajaya, PhD


Treating PTSD with MDMA Assisted Therapy:
Psychedelic Catalyzation of  Therapeutic Process
Bruce Sewick, LCPC, CADC


Beyond Brain Trauma: Insights into the Moral Injury of War and
Psychedelic Healing of an Iraq Combat Veteran
Katinka Hooyer, PhD, MS
Dan Kasza, Former Staff Sergeant, Weapons Squad Leader, 82nd Airbourne Infantry


Depression: There and Back Again (One Woman’s Journey)
Robin Mitchell


Lithium Jesus – The Pitfalls of Psychedelics without a Guide
Charles Monroe-Kane


Sound Meditation
(Tibetan Bowls, Shruti Box, Didgeridoo, Throat Singing)
Peformed by: Shaamaahs



Time: 9 AM -5 PM


Mind Design via Mindapps, Ideagens, and Multistate Theory
Thomas Roberts, PhD


Transformation in Ibogaine Treatment for Substance Dependence
Thomas Brown, PhD


The Toad Medicine (5-MEO-DMT) Experience as a catalyst for recovery and positive change:
Some initial observations on its application for the treatment of substance dependence and PTSD following Ibogaine detox
Anny Ortiz


Witness to Transformation :
Addiction As a Passage Toward Freedom and Personal Empowerment
John Harrison, MA, PsyD(c)


Peyote the Sacrament Crossing Racial Lines for Anyone of Any Race
Mary Porter


Communicating a New Consciousness: Countercultural Medicine, Transpersonal Psychology, and the Home Birth Movement in the 1970s
Wendy Kline, PhD


Connected in the deep: patients’ experiences of psilocybin for
treatment-resistant depression
Rosalind Watts


Grace and Self-Effort in A Psychedelic Life
Robert J. Barnhart


A Non-Dogmatic Exploration of Psychedelic Dogmatism
Matt Vogel


The Three Paths of Psychedelics: Therapeutic, Spiritual and Recreational
Moderated by: Matt Vogel
Panel: Dennis McKenna, John Harrison, Nicholas V. Cozzi, PhD, Robert Barnhart, Thomas Roberts, Allan Ajaya



Time: 9 AM – 5 PM


Reports from the Psychedelic Frontier
Nicholas V. Cozzi, PhD


Applying a Contextual Behavior Framework to the Psychedelic Experience for the for the Purposes of Clinical Application, Integration and Study
Nathan Gates


Reclaiming Family Values: A Conversation on Psychedelic Parenting
Jonathan Thompson


The Minds of Gaia
Dennis McKenna, PhD


Psychedelics and Meditative Practice: Two Allies
Erik Storlie, PhD


Predictive Processing: A Promising Paradigm for Psychedelic Science
Link Swanson


Psilocybin and Personality Change
Katherine MacLean, PhD


The Driftless Freewheelin’ & Wide Open Panel Discussion
Driftless Presenters

There will be a dinner Saturday night with the presenters at The Rooted Spoon (219 S Main St) in Viroqua. This will be a three course meal (Appetizers, Plated Dinner and Dessert) catered by Luke Zahm and the crew at Driftless Cafe. The Driftless Cafe specializes in fresh, organic farm to table menus. Cost is $60.00 seating is limited to 60.

Purchase Tickets


Refund Policy: Full refund up to one week prior (January 20th)

to the symposium. If ticket form below is not working click here.

The Venue

The Driftless Psychedelic Therapy Symposium will be held at the Ark in Viroqua, WI. The Ark is a community arts space with a beautiful octagonal sanctuary that has been converted to a theatre. The perfect venue!


Seating is limited to 200. Please purchase tickets early!

The Ark

401 E Jefferson St, Viroqua, WI 54665


A block of rooms are being held at Vernon Inn under “The Symposium”. The rate is $70 per night.
Also recommended in Viroqua. Book early!


217 On Main
Hickory Hill Motel
Heritage Inn


2017 Sponsors

Thank you to our sponsors who help make the symposium alive and affordable!

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