The Latin word Integrare means to ‘make whole’ or ‘begin again’. Integration is about moving towards wholeness.
What does it mean to make whole? There may be times in our lives where we feel fragmented. We might talk in terms of ‘parts’; a part of you wants one thing and another part of you feels like it’s struggling. There may be a part of you that you try to push way, ignore or numb. Maybe you don’t like that shadow part of you and would rather not face it. To become whole is to bring these parts into the light and integrate or blend together to make one unified whole being. Using psychedelics or plant medicine is a way to understand the shadow parts of the self and to integrate the learning into every day life.
Many of us come to psychedelics through partying when we were younger where tripping is a laugh and a way to spend a night dancing and having fun. Some of us have had challenging trips, some good, some spiritual and for some, journeying can be life changing. There is a lot of emerging research that is showing that these plant medicines aren’t just for partying. Many people are using plant medicines such as psilocybin and ayahuasca as a way to self discovery, healing and becoming whole in what can be seen as a fragmented and damaged world.
If you have trauma in your life the chances are that some of these plant medicines such as psilocybin will unleash what is in your unconscious mind; that which is beneath the conscious mind. This is the stuff that has been buried deep by way of protecting yourself from pain and hurt. It’s the emotions and fears behind the ego. We build up so many layers of self but who are we really behind the masks? Psychedelics can show us. They reveal to us what it is that we are running from. And sometimes that can hurt badly and takes a while to understand. This is where the work of integrating your experience comes in.
But before all of that we need to understand what it is that we want to get out of our journeying. If it’s just a great night on acid in a club or at a festival, well go ahead if that’s your bag. At some festivals there may be a tent where psychedelic harm reduction and peer support are there to help people navigate through challenging trips. One such organisation is called The Zendo Project. This project is part of the MAPS foundation. They create safe…