Transformational Psychotherapy…

… is an integral approach of understanding the nature of human existence from its molecular basis up to the level of phenomenal consciousness. As a transdisciplinary endeavor it bridges the gap between different epistemological perspectives such as molecular biology, psychopharmacology, neuroscience, brain imaging, systems and information theory, psychology, philosophy of mind, phenomenology of altered states of consciousness, mindfulness and deep ecology.

Transformational psychotherapy proposes a novel paradigm in consciousness research that bridges the gap between archaic and ancestral wisdom as expressed in shamanic traditions with contemporary neuroscientific and clinical evidence. Its therapeutic model is based on the existential need of human beings to express their individual potentials in the broader relational community of life. Ecological closure of interpersonal expression and reception is marked by increased psychological well-being and a global attitude of gratefulness towards the life process itself.

Transformational Psychotherapy advocates a paradigm shift from substitution to transformation-based psychiatry: Mental disorders should not be treated as purely isolated deficits in the biomechanics of the brain that have to be substituted by means of psychopharmacology on a daily basis but as complex homeostatic and holistic processes that deserve a therapeutic notion of transformation that facilitates neurobehavioral change.


Background

After many years of neuroscientific, psychological and philosophical studies into the nature of human consciousness I had the opportunity to witness the power of ritual and therapeutic use of psychedelic medicines such as ayahuasca (DMT), peyote cactus (mescaline), bufo alvarius toad (5-MeO-DMT), salvia divinorum (salvinorin A) and psilocybin mushrooms on my ethnobotanical expeditions to Mexico, Colombia and Brazil. Psychoactive plants have been used in ceremonies and sacred rituals throughout human history for shamanic, therapeutic and psychospiritual purposes and offer exciting tools for the exploration of the molecular epistemology and phenomenology of consciousness. In an appropriate setting these non-specific amplifiers of subjective experience provide astonishing insights into the nature of the human mind.

The shamanic approach of journeying through various levels of expanded awareness revealed direct experiential proof of epistemological concepts previously elaborated in my philosophical MA thesis (Scheidegger 2013): It became more lucid to me that consciousness is a phenomenon deeply rooted in the ecology of nature as proposed by integrative thinkers such as Gregory Bateson. These non-reductionist, panexperiential and integrative theories of consciousness have the capacity to resolve the conceptually misleading distinctions between mind and matter that continue to confuse the history of rationalistic thought.

Psychedelic experiences thus represent a novel epistemological category of knowledge: An intuitive, pre-logical and pre-verbal understanding through direct experience of crystal-clear qualities of pure consciousness and the interrelatedness of psyche and cosmos. They touch upon the deepest levels of our psychospiritual longing for meaning and purpose in life and facilitate mystical experiences that have huge therapeutic potential. Hence, mindfulness-based disciplines such as meditation provide valuable frameworks for preparation and integration of psychedelic experiences into everyday life.


Mission

The mission of Transformational Psychotherapy is to rediscover and further investigate the therapeutic potential of altered states of consciousness as revealed by archaic techniques of ecstasy, shamanic ritual and psychoactive plant use that form an integral part of human cultural evolution and to incorporate these transformational experiences into contemporary psychiatry and scientific world-views.

The journey into remote territories of the human psyche advocates an attitude of epistemological humility towards any dogmatic tendencies of the superstitious intellect: Reality turns out to be an ever-changing dance of possibilities and calls ourselves into full responsibility of conscious co-creation from the subjective perspectives of our incorporated selves.

In the end, life differentiates along the intrinsic sensitivity for the conditions of its formative origin: The primal source of love as the ultimate non-dual ground of being from which all cosmic manifestations express the tendency to communicate with themselves.

Disclaimer: The information on this website is not intended to encourage the use of ethnobotanicals or psychoactive substances. Transformational Psychotherapy specifically cautions against the use of psychedelics in violation of the law, without appropriate professional guidance and monitoring, or without careful personal evaluation of potential risks and hazards.