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How to combine Magic Mushrooms and Meditation

Posted under: Latest News, News and Science

At first glance magic mushrooms and meditation may seem rather different, but they actually have a lot more in common than first meets the eye. 

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Both have been used for centuries to enter altered states of consciousness and both are intrinsically linked to spiritual practices and the cultivation of self-awareness. 

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Recent scientific research also shows that they both can bring about some incredibly positive changes in your mental health and that they may have somewhat similar effects on the brain. So it’s no surprise that more and more people are using meditation alongside magic mushrooms to enhance their mental health and general wellbeing. But how exactly does one get started with psychedelic meditation?

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What is Meditation?

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First, it is important to get a more clear picture of what exactly meditation is. For a rather simple activity, meditation can sometimes seem quite complicated if you’ve never really explored it before. Meditation is something that has been developed in many different cultures and spiritual traditions, and there are more than 100 different varieties existing today. 

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Truth be told, meditation is a very personal experience and can be totally different for everyone. Generally, meditation involves lying or sitting in a comfortable posture while focusing on your breathing and observing the mind. A meditative state typically involves becoming more aware and focused on the present moment, but as there are so many meditation techniques to explore, the trick is finding one that works for you.

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Establishing a meditative practice can increase your self-awareness and help you become more attentive to your unconscious thought patterns. Through meditation, you will also become more familiar with your emotions and better manage how they impact your life. The mind and body both work in symbiosis, so when you have a more calm and harmonized mind, it can also bring about positive physical changes such as a lower resting heart rate and a more robust immune system. The true key to experiencing the positive effects of mediation lies in establishing a regular routine ─ the more committed you are, the more you will see the shifts. 

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Why Do Magic Mushrooms & Meditation Pair So Well?

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Psychedelic substances and meditation have a degree of neurological overlap, as both impact what is known as the default mode network. This is the default state the mind rests in and essentially constitutes our sense of self. It accounts for our everyday thinking patterns ─ which sometimes can be more negative than we realize. 

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By enhancing neuroplasticity and disrupting our typical thought patterns, both meditation and mushrooms can reduce stress, and anxiety, help you relax, and allow you to gain a different perspective on life. When combined, they can have a synergistic effect ─ meditation can enhance the psychedelic experience and vice versa.

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The anecdotal positive effects of magic mushrooms and meditation on their own are no secret. But what does science say about this match? A study from 2019 in Zurich demonstrated that when you use magic mushrooms and meditate,  it speeds up and enhances feelings of self-transcendence.

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When participants experienced an intense sense of self-transcendence, it made lasting changes to neural pathways in the brain. In the follow-up to the study (four months later), participants who meditated with mushrooms had better self-acceptance and more empathy, openness, and optimism than those who meditated with a placebo.

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Skills learned in meditation ─ remaining at peace with one’s self and the fluctuations of mind and body, facing discomfort from a place of non-judgment, and much, much more ─ can be of great support in a psychedelic session. 

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How Do You Combine Magic Mushrooms & Meditation?

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For many people, meditation can enhance the therapeutic effects of magic mushrooms, but combining the two can also be quite intense. When approaching psychedelic meditation there are some tips and techniques that can support your experience. 

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Tip #1 - Learn How To Meditate

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Preparation is key! Before you dive straight in at the deep end, it’s good to build your meditation skills first. Take some meditation classes to learn about the different techniques and establish a consistent practice that suits you. This regularity and mental lightness will serve you much better when you enter into a psychedelic experience. Otherwise, you would be exploring unfamiliar terrain without properly understanding your tool kit. Try out a few methods and find something that feels comfortable and right for you, then establish a regular practice until meditation is integrated into your life. 

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Tip #2 - Start With a Small Dose

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If you’re new to meditation, new to consuming magic mushrooms, or new to meditating while on magic mushrooms: take it slow and ease into it! You can try meditating on a microdose first ─ the experience will be less intense, and give you a great opportunity to build confidence in your meditation skills and find a balance that is right for you. When you’re comfortable meditating on a microdose, try with a larger dose and slowly build your way up to a big trip.

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Tip #3 - Do It in the Right Set and Setting

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Before you meditate with magic mushrooms, make sure that you prepare yourself and your environment for your trip. Taking psychedelics in the correct set and setting is recommended, and perhaps finding yourself a trip sitter to support the experience. 

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Tip #4 - Don’t Force It

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Neither meditation nor psychedelic experiences are about controlling the mind or forcing yourself to be a certain way. Rather they are about cultivating awareness and ease within. Gently focusing on the breath can help increase comfort and reduce anxiety, further facilitating your mushroom trip and allowing it to be that much more enjoyable.

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It’s not about having too many goals or ideas of how the experience will unfold ─ instead think of mushrooms and meditation as tools to investigate your own being and, most importantly, get out of your own way.

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Tip #5 -  Before, During & After

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Cultivating a meditation practice will prepare you for a more profound, more meaningful magic mushroom trip, support you during this trip, and also help to integrate the experience afterward. Building a bridge between the two ─ meditation and mushrooms ─ will support you as you continue your journey of self-awareness and growth. 

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Conclusion

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Magic mushrooms and meditation can be incredibly complementary and may be stronger together than either is alone. Psychedelic experiences can also deepen one’s meditation practice and meditation can facilitate a more meaningful trip. Some view them as two sides of the same coin, so it can be an incredibly enriching experience to begin combining the two and exploring what works for you. 

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Note: If you’re suffering from a mental illness and are curious about using psilocybin or any other psychedelic therapy, please consult one of the relevant medical authorities first. Do not self-prescribe, it’s vital to have the right support and guidance when using psychedelics as medicine.