Thursday, November 27, 2008

Nature's Cure: Know Thyself?

On November 6, 2008 a citizen journalist, Sheryl Walters, posted an observant and passionate article about how iboga, the west African shrub whose root contains the indole alkaloid ibogaine hydrochloride, is a holistic, all-natural treatment for drug addiction. She uses the word cure, but I would not make that claim based on my own personal knowledge of addicts who relapse and need further treatment. It is uncanny, however, how a single dose of ibogaine in a pill form can interrupt the cravings for drugs for a period from a few days to a few years, with most relapsing in a few months (3-6, on average).

Howard Lotsof, social workers Rommell Washington and Barbara Judd, and Ken Alper, MD, have observed that relapse is dependent on whether the addict returns to their former addict environment or moves away to start anew.

As Ms. Walters writes:
"Ibogaine is a psychedelic, dream creating drug. The person taking Ibogaine lies down and experiences incredible visions that are relevant to their life. It seems to go straight into the unconscious mind, bringing incredible insights into one’s nature. Every person’s experience is totally different. For some it is as if they are watching a movie of their life, for others it is as if they are being reorganized like a filing cabinet, and for others, the visions may have no recognisable meaning at the time it is being taken."

In discussing the psychotherapeutic aspects of the ibogaine experience, she notes:
"In fact, Ibogaine is not only being used for drug addicts, but also for people who want to sort out a whole range of issues that burden them."

And so I hear, many non-addicts are undergoing ibogaine treatment to help them understand themselves, their own personalities, and to unravel the roots of their present day behaviors.

I'd read quite a few posts from these people, non-addicts on a journey of self awareness. As Ms. Judd wryly observed in the ENDABUSE REPORT VIDEO posted on this blog, years of psychotherapy can occur internally within a couple of days. If you were self aware and wanted to figure out why you are so unhappy, neurotic, with tendencies for anti-social or self-inflicted wounds, I would think that ibogaine may be an efficacious and expedient way to cut through all the bull crap and get yourself right down to the core of your being and the root of your problems in a calm, unemotional, detached re-experiencing of key psyche forming events from your past.

It's not a cheap, easy ride. It can cost from $2K to $20K depending on who, what, where, and when. It isn't covered by Medicare or American health insurance companies. It's a ticket to adventure, external and internal, with the possibility of powerful catharsis and personal epiphany. But don't jump into it. There are risks. And rewards. Be sure to do your homework, dot your "i's" and cross your T's. Take all the required medical tests and make sure you're healthy enough for the ordeal. Get healthy, exercise, eat properly, and be well rested, well read, informed, and hip.

It's worth the trip.

For all of you who wish to indulge in Ms. Walters' excellent article, click here.

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