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Queering Psychedelics Book Launch

By Synergetic Press

November 23, 2022 | Present & Past Events

Thursday, December 8th, 2022 from 6:00-10:00 pm PST

World of Wonder
6650 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90028


We are excited to announce a free in-person book launch for The Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicine’s new book Queering Psychedelics: From Oppression to Liberation in Psychedelic Medicine. The event will include a panel discussion with Dr. Bia Labate, Dr. Alex Belser, Dr. Clancy Cavnar, Ariel Vegosen, and Behike Sensei Kevon Simpson where all of the speakers will talk about topics and issues addressed in the book. Afterward, we will also provide a space for socializing among participants and attendees, to whom we will be happy to offer delicious snacks and drinks for refreshment. Additionally, those who wish to purchase copies of the book will be able to do so on the spot. While this event is free, you must still register in order to attend. You can register for this event here.

Register here

Panelists Include:

Dr. Beatriz Caiuby Labate (Bia Labate) is a queer Brazilian anthropologist based in San Francisco. She has a Ph.D. in social anthropology from the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Brazil. Her main areas of interest are the study of plant medicines, drug policy, shamanism, ritual, religion, and social justice. She is Executive Director of the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines (https://chacruna.nethttps://chacruna-iri.org and serves as Public Education and Culture Specialist at the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). She is also an Adjunct Faculty at the East-West Psychology Program at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) and Visiting Scholar at Naropa University’s Center for Psychedelic Studies. Additionally, she is a member of the Oregon Psilocybin Advisory Board’s Research Subcommittee and an Advisor at the Synthesis Institute and at InnerTrek. Dr. Labate is a co-founder of the Interdisciplinary Group for Psychoactive Studies (NEIP) in Brazil and editor of its site since. She is the author, co-author, and co-editor of twenty-four books, two special-edition journals, and several peer-reviewed articles (


Dr. Alex Belser has been a leader in the psychedelic research community for the last twenty years, having served as an investigator on clinical trials of psilocybin and MDMA to treat depression, anxiety, substance use, OCD, PTSD, and end-of-life distress. Dr. Belser is a psychologist and Co-Investigator at Yale University.  He serves as the Chief Clinical Officer of Cybin where he leads their clinical programs in psychedelic therapeutics. He is also part of Chacruna Institute’s Women, Gender Diversity, and Sexual Minorities Working Group. Dr. Belser previously served as Chief Clinical Officer at Adelia Therapeutics, where he directed the clinical program investigating tryptamines and phenethylamines for a variety of treatment indications. Dr. Belser has authored over a dozen peer-reviewed journal articles and chapters. He worked as a therapist on studies of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for the treatment of severe PTSD. Dr. Belser studied at Georgetown University, the University of Cambridge, Columbia University, New York University, and Yale University. Dr. Belser trained at Bellevue Hospital, Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital, and New York Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University. See more here and here


Clancy Cavnar has a doctorate in clinical psychology (Psy.D.) from John F. Kennedy University in Pleasant Hill, CA. She currently works in private practice in San Francisco, and is Co-Founder and a member of the Board of Directors of the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines. She is also a research associate of the Interdisciplinary Group for Psychoactive Studies (NEIP). She combines an eclectic array of interests and activities as clinical psychologist, artist, and researcher. She has a master of fine arts in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute, a master’s in counseling from San Francisco State University, and she completed the Certificate in Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy program at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS). She is author and co-author of articles in several peer-reviewed journals and co-editor, with Beatriz Caiuby Labate, of ten books. For more information see:


Behike Sensei Kevon Simpson is an international healer who uses mindfulness and shamanism to help people create positive changes in their lives. He is from a Jamaican lineage of spiritual healers and has over 15 years of healing experience in various modalities including movement, word, and sound. He specializes in cathartic poems and prayers for deep ceremonial soul retrieval sessions, while playing a hang drum, and other instruments. Trained in both Shipibo, and Quechua medicine lineages, hearing icaros or medicine songs can be expected in his company. Kevon cherishes ancient indigenous wisdom in regards to the use of plant medicines and their ability to heal, and awaken. He believes it to be a most promising route to building a better world for our future generations, and works to raise awareness in that regard through his group The Entheogen Integration Circle which primarily serves POC and their allies in NYC.


Ariel Vegosen is a professional justice, equity, diversity, inclusion workshop facilitator, consultant, writer, educator, ordained Kohenet ritualist, coach, performer, and public speaker. Ariel is the founder and director of Gender Illumination, CEO of Shine Diversity, co-founder of Queerdome, and ONCA Foundation Trainee. For over 20 years Ariel has facilitated workshops all over the world for corporations, non-profits, faith-based organizations, and psychedelic therapists. Ariel is proud to be queer, loves to play with pronouns, and brings joy into all aspects of life. Email: [email protected]




Synergetic Press

For over 35 years as an independent publisher, our mission has been to promote mindful discussion of humankind’s present and future lives. We publish unique and paradigm-shifting ideas in subjects such as ecology, sustainability, psychedelics, consciousness, and environmental and social justice that inspire both individual and social change.


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