Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors
Search in posts
Search in pages

Women and Psychedelics Launch Event

Women and Psychedelics Launch Event

TUESDAY, AUGUST 13, 2024, 6:00-7:30 PM PDT

Women and Psychedelics Virtual Launch Event

In the ever-expanding conversations around psychedelic medicines and their multitudinous histories, women’s voices and stories have been excluded and even suppressed. What profound contributions are living outside of this patriarchal lens? How do we understand the role of women in psychedelic history and the emergent present? 

Join historian and co-editor of Women and Psychedelics: Uncovering Invisible Voices, Erika Dyck in conversation with Belinda Eriacho, Mikaela de la Myco, and Maria Mangini in highlighting some of the seminal women who have shaped, and continue to shape, the psychedelic landscape. This intimate, intergenerational conversation will explore the roles women have played in care work, from ritual rites of passage in the transpersonal domains of birth and death to the vital role that elders play in the psychedelic community. We will also examine how traditional gender norms have shaped the way psychedelics are perceived and utilized, using intersectional frameworks to explore how we can collectively create a more inclusive and equitable space for all.

Register for Free

About the speakers

Erika Dyck is a Professor and Canada Research Chair in the History of Health & Social Justice at the University of Saskatchewan. She is the author or editor of several books and articles on the history of psychedelics, including: Psychedelic Psychiatry (2008); Psychedelic Prophets (2018), A Culture’s Catalyst (2016) Wonder Drug (2021), Acid Room (2022); Expanding Mindscapes (2023) and Psychedelics: A Visual Odyssey (2024). Erika was the co-editor of the Canadian Journal of Health History (2015-2023) and is currently the President of the Alcohol and Drugs History Society. She is also a co-editor of the recently published, Women and Psychedelics: Uncovering Invisible Voices (2024).

Mikaela de la Myco comes from a blended ancestry.  Her ancestors come from southern italy, the caribbean and mexico and she uplifts their perspectives in the space of entheogens.In her everyday life, Mikaela serves as a mother, an educator, a folk herbalist, a community organizer and entheogen facilitator in occupied Kumeyaay & Luiseno territory, also known as San Diego, CA. She cares for all people with ancestral healing ways and holds special focus in serving small-businesses, cooperatives, non-monogamous people, psychedelic families, femmes and people seeking full-spectrum herbal womb care. She has collaborated as an educator and activist with hundreds of companies and organizations within the sacred earth medicine space and is well known as a maternal caretaker in the community. Her platforms, Mama de la Myco and the mushWOMB generate educational content that weaves the tapestry of medicine woman, psychedelic mother and sacred hoe.  In all her creations, Mikaela de la Myco has made the commitment to rematriate entheogens by advocating for ethics and womb to tomb psychedelic literacy.  Her most recent movement, Mothers of the Mushroom is an open source research and resources project meant to further permission the world into remembering that psychedelics are for families.

Maria Mangini, PhD, FNP, completed her doctorate in Community Health Nursing at University of California, San Francisco, where her research on drugs and drug policy explored the impact of historic LSD use in the lives of middle-aged adults. She was the director of the MSN/FNP program at Holy Names University in Oakland for 20 years. For 25 years, she was in family practice with Frank Lucido MD, and theirs was one of the first to add medical cannabis to the family practice armamentarium. She is co-founder of the Women’s Visionary Council, which supports the work of women scholars, artists, healers and visionaries through a series of conferences, workshops and grants. Her interests currently center on the study of death and dying.

Belinda Eriacho is of Dine’ (Navajo) and A:shiwi (Pueblo of Zuni) descent. Her maternal clan is One-Who-Walks-Around and she was born for the Zuni Pueblo people. Belinda was born and raised on the Navajo reservation, located in Arizona, United States of America. She is the wisdom carrier, healer, and founder of Kaalogii LLC, focused on cultural and traditional teaching, inner healing, and an international speaker on various topics impacting Native American communities in the United States. Belinda holds degrees in Health Sciences, Technology, and Public Health. In addition, Belinda has participated in the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, MDMA People of Color, and Eye Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy Training Programs. Belinda is also a Founder and Board member of the Church of the Eagle and the Condor, a Program Advisor for Naropa University, and a Native American Traditional Advisor for SoundMind. She is the author recent articles that are available on  “Considerations for Psychedelic Therapist when working with Native American People and Communities”, “Guidelines for Inclusion of Indigenous People into Psychedelic Science Conferences” and “This is not Native American History, this is US History with Belinda Eriacho”.  In addition, a contributing author to the recently published Psychedelic Justice: Toward a Diverse and Equitable Psychedelic Culture (Synergetic Press, 2021).

Noelle Armstrong is a queer poet, editor, and teacher in California. She is the Managing Editor of Synergetic Press and the Poetry Editor at DoubleBlind Magazine. She believes in care as a form of creativity and creativity as a form of care.

Body Autonomy Virtual Reading

Body Autonomy Virtual Reading

TUESDAY, MAY 14, 2024, 5:30-7:00 PM EDT

Body Autonomy: Decolonizing Sex Work & Drug Use Virtual Reading Event

Join authors and contributors of Body Autonomy: Decolonizing Sex Work & Drug Use for a free virtual reading and discussion on May 14, 5:30-7 P.M. EDT, celebrating the intertwining needs for touch and the exploration of our consciousness. This groundbreaking book promotes the understanding of how these experiences have been suppressed. The anthology’s authors invite us all into self-sovereignty by imagining otherwise. 

In an era when the privileged can publicly embrace the benefits of sex positivity and psychedelics, marginalized communities continue to bear the brunt of interpersonal and systemic violence in everything from criminalization to health inequities. In the 17 essays in Body Autonomy: Decolonizing Sex Work and Drug Use, leading advocates, sex workers, and scholars who have been harmed by American neocolonial policies unpack the ideological wars on body autonomy and map tactics from the War on Drugs onto legislation that criminalizes and disenfranchises sex work. This bold and timely collection uplifts the right to freedom in one’s own body, drawing connections between erotic labor, the use of psychoactive substances, and the impact of violent policing and incarceration. 

By illuminating the material and sacred aspects of erotic labor and foregrounding decolonial perspectives on substances, Body Autonomy emphasizes healing-centered harm reduction practices to shine a path beyond punishment and inequity. If we gaze together through the lens of a pleasure-oriented future, we can learn to prioritize compassion over criminalization, collectively expanding our understanding of survival, healing, and embodied liberation.

Register for Free

About the Panelists

Justice Rivera (she/they; ella/elle) is a writer, social justice consultant, harm reductionist, and pleasure activist based in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Justice’s professional and artistic work is grounded in principles of harm reduction, anti-oppression, and healing justice. Her expressions, which come in many forms, seek to deconstruct carceral and punishment-driven paradigms to race, gender, and bodily autonomy. Justice has worked to provide direct services, organizing leadership, and capacity building support to people in the sex trade, survivors of trafficking, and people who use drugs in Denver, Washington DC, Seattle, and nationally. She is now a Partner with the QPOC-led harm reduction consulting company Reframe Health and Justice. This anthology was compiled in part through her 2019 Open Society Foundation Soros Justice Media Fellowship. When she isn’t working, Justice loves to travel, cook, volunteer, and play with her cat, friends, and family. Follow Justice on X @justice_writes and IG @justicerivera_writes. Follow Reframe Health and Justice on Instagram @harmreductionfemmes

Jessica Peñaranda is a Queer (im)migrant woman of color, a human rights advocate, organizer, strategist, creative, and caretaker. Jessica has worked for over 14 years providing direct services, strategic leadership, program management, community building, and co-struggling with communities at intersecting identities impacted by systemic and interpersonal violence. Jessica is passionate about collective leadership and birthing communities of care through an intersectional and anti-oppressive healing justice framework with an emphasis on connection, cultural humility, mutual aid, and transformative justice. Jessica holds a master’s degree in Human Rights from New York University and a BA degree in Women’s Studies from The College of New Jersey.

zara raven is a Caribbean queer mama working to build safety through healing and transformative justice practice. zara is cocreator of many projects and campaigns working to interrupt state and interpersonal violence, including the DecrimNow DC and Decrim NY campaigns to end the criminalization of the sex trades in Washington, DC, and New York. zara’s writing has been featured in Teen Vogue, them, and the Washington Post, and zara’s work has been profiled in Slate, Upworthy,, Rolling Stone, Hustler magazine, and more.

Presto Crespo (any/all) is a Black Latiné TGNC burgeoning pharmacological scientist, self-described “radical-combatant,” storyteller, and advocate for drug users as well as those living with chronic pain. Heavily influenced by his birthplace/still current home in the Bronx, he identifies as a former and current lumpenized individual-former drug dealer and current drug user. Presto is an initiate of Ifa and uses the spiritual practice/science to guide their communal work and connections. Presto currently works in harm reduction with NEXT Distro, the New York State Department of Health Office of Drug User Health/The AIDS Institute, and as a freelance stylist.

Paula Kahn is an artist, movement strategist, MPH candidate, and hxstory nerd working at the intersections of Indigenous rights; racial, migrant, environmental, and healing justice; drug policy; feminism; historical memory; and decarceration and demilitarization. Paula is interested in the roles of plants, psychoactives, ceremony, ritual and collective experiences in building historical memory, designing and implementing disarmament, demobilization, reintegration, and genocide prevention initiatives. They currently focus on abolishing the mass incarceration of immigrants in the US and enjoy building transnational networks for planetary rematriation. Born and raised in the working-class suburbs of Los Angeles, Paula descends from Mayan, Ashkenazi Jewish, and Iberian ancestries. Find out more about Paula @plurproductions on Instagram.




New Study on Psychedelics & Intimacy Recruiting Couples

New Study on Psychedelics & Intimacy Recruiting Couples

The intersection of psychedelics, sex, intimacy, and pleasure has long been a topic that ignites curiosity among many. Probably as old as humanity itself is our innate proclivity for exploring the unknown, seeking pleasure, and cultivating deep connections with one another. Whether it be through recreational use or sacred ceremonies, psychedelics can heighten our somatic awareness and facilitate profound moments of interconnection with others. 

To learn more about this potent topic, a new study by Imperial College London aims to delve into the intricate dynamics of how these substances influence individuals’ relationships with their partners, encompassing aspects ranging from intimacy and attachment styles to sexual experiences.

The Psychedelic Couples Study 

Are you planning to ingest a psychedelic substance or attend a psychedelic retreat with your romantic partner and want to help with psychedelic research?     

A pioneering research project led by Imperial College London, the Psychedelic Couples Study, invites romantic partners to embark on a journey together, delving into the psychological effects of substances like MDMA, psilocybin mushrooms, ayahuasca, LSD, ketamine, and 2C-B. This study aims to uncover the potential impact of these substances on everything from intimacy to attachment styles and sexual satisfaction. 

Couples who choose to participate in this online study are asked to enter the planned date of their psychedelic experience, enabling researchers to track the effects over time. The study design includes questionnaires administered at various intervals: one week before the experience, within hours before, two days after, four weeks after, and three months after. These questionnaires aim to provide insight into how the psychedelic experience influences the dynamics of the relationship.

One of the most intriguing aspects of this study is its intended emphasis on shared experiences. While individuals can complete the study alone, couples participating together offer a unique perspective. One member of the couple must enroll in the study first before receiving a unique link to share the study with their partner. 

Psychedelic experiences have long been associated with profound personal insights and spiritual awakenings. However, their potential to enrich romantic relationships is a relatively unexplored territory. With this study, researchers aim to shed light on how these substances may influence aspects such as trust, vulnerability, and emotional intimacy within romantic partnerships.

Click here to know more and sign up.     

Participate in the study

Artwork: “Ego Death” by Stella Stryzowska

Ceasefire Now! A Statement on Palestine

We at Synergetic Press, an organization dedicated to uplifting changemaking movements in social justice, consciousness, and ecology, demand an immediate and permanent ceasefire in Gaza in solidarity with Palestinian peoples. We decry the genocidal bombings in Gaza, with tens of thousands of lives taken, many more injured, so many missing, and so many more terrified for their lives. We are mourning the lives brutally taken in Israel on October 7, for the ripples of pain among the survivors, and for the intergenerational trauma this has touched upon for communities worldwide. We call for the release of the Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners who are still separated from their families. 

Advocating for a ceasefire is a return to our basic humanity and an acknowledgment of our interconnectedness—we feel the suffering as it comes to us in real time and our hearts are crying out. 

We call for an end to Israel’s occupation, which has systematized the dispossession of land, defended the expansion of illegal settlements, and repeatedly violated international law in denying basic resources to the people of Gaza, where two-thirds of the population are refugees from other places in Palestine. As of August 2023, the Israeli government had left 63% of Gazans food insecure with 95% of people lacking access to clean water, living within a militarized border under daily threat of violence and unable to move freely.

We recognize that so many are grieving the actions of their own governments acting with such profound disregard for the sanctity of human life. The Hamas attack on October 7 is no excuse for Islamophobia, nor are the Israeli government’s actions an excuse for anti-Semitism. We condemn religious discrimination and firmly stand against hateful speech of any kind.

Even with the understanding that we are not our governments, some of us live in places where we have the freedom to protest, speak out against injustice, and have an impact on the choices our governments make. We can see ourselves as a part of a bigger whole, envisioning ourselves, as adrienne maree brown might—as part of a fractal in which individual actions are mirrored at a larger scale. As they write, “In fractal conception, I am a cell-sized unit of the human organism, and I have to use my life to leverage a shift in the system by how I am, as much as the things I do.” We can “see our own lives and work and relationships as a front line, a first place we can practice justice, liberation, and alignment with each other and the planet.” 

We firmly denounce the actions of colonialist and suppressive entities that prioritize self-interest over the well-being of the people. We believe in amplifying the voices of people worldwide who advocate for a more compassionate and interconnected existence and decry the censorship of those who stand in solidarity with Palestine, who are being shadowbanned online and silenced at their workplaces. As a press that uplifts decolonial perspectives and social justice movements, we see the struggles throughout the world against the supremacy and power of colonizing forces as interrelated. We recognize that war is an intersectional issue: a racial justice issue, a reproductive rights issue, and a climate justice issue. The power of international solidarity in justice movements is the power of peoples seeing themselves in one another. Paying attention to what is happening in Gaza is an invitation to pay attention to multiple other wars and crises around the planet—from Ukraine to Congo to Sudan. It is an invitation to stay with the trouble, to listen with love, and to hold those around you in their complexity as we do this work together. We seek a just solution not only for this conflict, but everywhere where the misuse of power creates trauma and perpetuates cycles of violence. 

We move as a collective with love as our motive, animated by compassion and shared humanity, recognizing that our individual liberation is inextricably woven with the world—that we are not free until all of us are free.

For those who want to reach out and help, there are tangible actions you can take:


Unveiling the Enigmatic Link Between Christmas and Mushrooms

Unveiling the Enigmatic Link Between Christmas and Mushrooms

As we deck the halls and trim the tree for the festive season, it’s fascinating to explore the unexpected ties between Christmas and an unlikely character – the fly agaric mushroom. The legend of Santa Claus, a figure deeply embedded in Western holiday traditions, may have roots that reach into the mysterious world of fungi.

The Fly Agaric Mushroom

The fly agaric mushroom, scientifically known as Amanita muscaria, with its distinctive red cap adorned with white spots, has long captured the human imagination. Native to temperate and boreal regions of the Northern Hemisphere, this fungus is known for its psychoactive properties. While it can be toxic if consumed raw, certain Indigenous cultures have employed it for ceremonial and shamanic purposes.

To understand the connection between Christmas and the fly agaric mushroom, we must delve into ancient traditions. Some theories suggest that the origins of the association can be traced back to Siberian shamans who utilized the mushroom in winter solstice rituals. These rituals later coincided with the Christian celebration of Christmas.

The Mushroom and Santa Claus

Delving into the intriguing Christmas-fungus connection, we encounter a captivating parallel between the fly agaric mushroom and the iconic image of Santa Claus. The vibrant red cap and white spots of the mushroom remarkably mirror Santa’s red and white attire. Some theorists even propose that Santa’s image may have been shaped by shamanic traditions, specifically those involving the consumption of the fly agaric mushroom.

The origins of Santa Claus take us back to the Nordic countries, where Arctic shamans played pivotal roles in winter solstice celebrations. In a mesmerizing narrative twist, these ancient mystics distributed psychedelic mushrooms that bore a striking resemblance to the Amanita mushrooms, characterized by their red caps and white spots. Cloaked in red garments reminiscent of the iconic fungi, the shamans orchestrated a magical experience, enabling people to commune with nature during the solstice.

Reindeer and Mushrooms

Moreover, reindeer actively consume the fly agaric mushroom, contributing another layer to the Christmas narrative. In Siberian shaman practices, these reindeer played a crucial role in diminishing the toxicity of the mushroom, as they can ingest Amanita muscaria without succumbing to its toxic effects. 

Notably, Siberian shamans had a unique method of experiencing the visionary effects of the fly agaric mushroom—they would drink the urine of the reindeer that had consumed the mushrooms. This practice allowed the shamans to enter a visionary trance, a state akin to “flying” to other worlds, circumventing the toxic effects associated with ingesting the mushrooms directly whilst retaining the psychoactive effects.

Santa’s reindeer, including the famous Rudolph, may be an echo of these ancient tales. Some theorists, including professor and author Carl Ruck, propose that the flying reindeer are symbolic of the altered states induced by the consumption of the psychoactive mushroom.

In an interview with NBC News, he shared, “At first glance, one thinks it’s ridiculous, but it’s not. Whoever heard of reindeer flying? I think it’s becoming general knowledge that Santa is taking a ‘trip’ with his reindeer.”

“Amongst the Siberian shamans, you have an animal spirit you can journey with in your vision quest. And reindeer are common and familiar to people in eastern Siberia. They also have a tradition of dressing up like the (mushroom)…they dress up in red suits with white spots.”

Gift-Giving and Mushrooms

Another layer to the Christmas-mushroom connection is found in the tradition of gift-giving. As we adorn our homes with evergreen trees during the holidays, it’s interesting to note that mushrooms often grow at the base of trees, thriving on decaying organic matter. The symbolism becomes apparent as we place red and white presents beneath our Christmas trees, inadvertently echoing the natural habitat of these fascinating fungi.

While the connection between Christmas and the fly agaric mushroom remains speculative, the parallels between ancient shamanic practices, the iconic image of Santa Claus, and the symbolic nature of the fungus provide a captivating lens through which to view this festive season. Moreover, the scholarly insights of ethnomycologist Robert Gordon Wasson and anthropologist John A. Rush, emphasizing the Amanita muscaria mushroom’s ties to the Christmas imaginary, contribute an additional layer of understanding to this intriguing narrative.

Photo by Andrew Ridley on Unsplash

Pin It on Pinterest