Psycholytic Therapy

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Psycholytic Therapy is entheogen enhanced psychoanalysis. Psycholytic therapy is a term first used by Stanislav Grof (1976) to describe his successful use of moderate doses of LSD to treat a wide range of neurotic and psychotic psychopathologies. Psycholytic therapy involves Crown Activation which leads to recovery and resolution of repressed psychodynamic, perinatal, (Grof, 1976) and even past life trauma (Armstrong, 1989).

As described by Grof (1976), psycholytic therapy involves an extensive prepatory stage where the therapist administers "drug free" psychotherapy in order to establish boundaries, client orientation, and healthy and trusting therapeutic relationship. This is followed by several sessions of moderate dose LSD therapy, starting with 100 micrograms and increasing until an "optimum dosage" is determined. According to Grof (1976: 21), "Criterion for the optimum dose were an adequate depth of self-exploration, the overcoming of important psychological defenses, the emergence of sufficient amount of unconscious material, and, at the same time, the ability to maintain a good therapeutic content." (Grof, 1976: 21).

Careful attention to Set and Setting is critical to the success of psycholytic therapy. This includes a "modification" of the standard impersonality of psychodynamic therapies, and the introduction of "experiential" devices like listening to music, having a pleasing environment, and so on. (Grof, 1976)

During the experience, the therapist stays with the patient (the experiencer). Because of the length of the typical LSD experience, this can require a commitment of between twelve and sixteen hours. Following this, Grof (1976) advises patients not be left without supervision. Inbetween sessions, drug free de-briefing and analysis sessions are provided where the primary therapeutic task is identifying meaninful patterns and recovered traumas to linking clinical and personality problems in an attempt to resolve, reconsolidate, and free the individual of neurotic or psychotic symptoms. Throughout the course of psycholytic therapy, detailed clinical records are kept.


Psycholytic therapy is useful in treating psychodynamic and perinatal trauma For a more detailed discussion of the remarkable therapeutic value of entheogens, please consult the SpiritWiki page on Entheogens.

For therapeutic alternatives to the strong "crown activating" action of entheogens, please consult the SpiritWiki page on Crown Activators.

For a high dose alternative to psycholytic therapy with even more dramatically positive thereapeutic results, see psychedelic / transpersonal therapy.

See Also

Clearing Experiences | Crown Chakra | Crown Activation | Crown Activators | Entheogens

Psycholytic Therapy | Psychedelic Therapy


Further Reading

Sharp, Michael (unpublished). Lightning Path Book One Introduction to the Lightning Path: Principles, scope, organization, and grades. Lightning Path Press. [More Info]


Armstrong, Anne (1989). The Challenges of Psychic Opening: A Personal Story. In Grof, Stanislav and Grof, Christina. (Eds.). Spiritual Emergency: When Personal Transformation Becomes a Crises. (pp. 109-120). New York: Penguin Putnam.

Grof, Stanislav (1976). Realms of the Unconscious: Observations from LSD Research. New York: Viking Press.

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