Posts in Category: Events

Webinar Nov 11th 2021. Peter Gasser: Lessons learned from doing therapy with LSD and MDMA

Legal psychedelic therapy is mostly available in research contexts. Switzerland is an exception to this rule: In addition to research projects, the country grants individual treatment permissions for psychedelic therapy. Psychiatrist and psychotherapist Peter Gasser has extensive experience with these forms of therapy: At the turn of the 90s, he had special permission from the Swiss Federal Office for Public Health to research LSD and MDMA. After 2007, he has conducted two studies for LSD-assisted therapy in patients with anxieties due to life-threatening diseases. Since 2014, he has held individual permissions by the Swiss Health Administration for therapy with mind altering substances, which currently also includes psilocybin.

On Thursday, November 11th at 7PM UTC+2 / 6PM CET, Dr. Gasser will be sharing some of his extensive experience in a Zoom webinar organized by the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research. Drawing from his own clinical experience and from research projects around the world, Gasser will discuss the framework he uses and the conclusions that can currently be made.

Born in 1960, psychiatrist and psychotherapist Peter Gasser runs a private practice in Solothurn, Switzerland. He is a husband and a father of three. He was trained in psychodynamic methods as well as in therapy with mind altering drugs, i.e. psycholytic or psychedelic therapy. He has been a member of the Swiss Medical Society for Psycholytic Therapy since 1992 and its president since 1996.
The Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research is a non-profit association promoting scientific research related to psychedelics and the availability of accessible information based on such research.

Tickets are available in two categories: 10 € (full price) and 5 € (students / low income participants). You can buy the ticket in our web store.

For members of the association who’ve paid their membership fee for 2021, the event is free of charge. If you want to pay your membership fee for this year or become a member, you’ll find our membership items on the main page of our web store. An email with a link for free registration has been sent to members of the association. If you’re not sure if you’ve paid for your membership this year, feel free to ask us.

Zoom webinar Sept 25th 2021. David E. Nichols: Overview of Medicinal Chemistry Research on Psychedelics

When psychedelics were criminalized at the turn of the 1970s, most research on them also came to a halt. Yet, some avenues of study still remained open. Veteran of psychedelic research, pharmacologist and chemist David E. Nichols, PhD, has been researching psychedelics since 1969 – over the course of seven decades. On Saturday, September 25th, at 4PM UTC+3, Nichols will present a webinar lecture organized by Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry (Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research). The lecture offers a rich overview of psychedelics with an emphasis in medicinal chemistry. Topics covered include:

  • History of the use of psychedelics, reaching back millenia
  • Research conducted by the Heffter Research Institute, founded by the speaker in 1993
  • How psychedelics are tested in animals
  • The role and functions of the serotonin receptors central to the action of classic psychedelics
  • Research on LSD analogues – as an example, how different conformations of the molecule affect the kinetics of LSD binding to the receptor
  • The effects of psychedelics on brain dynamics as a possible mechanism for their therapeutic potential

The session will help get a better grasp of the growing interest in the broad field of psychedelic research. The lecture provides non-technical information accessible to the general public, but will also delve deeper into chemical and pharmacological details. The event includes a presentation and discussion with questions from the audience. 

Tickets are available in two categories: 10 € (full price) and 5 € (students / low income participants) in our web store.

For members of the association who’ve paid their membership fee for 2021, the event is free of charge. If you want to pay your membership fee for this year or become a member, you’ll find our membership items in our web store: An email with a link for free registration has been sent to members of the association. If you’re not sure if you’ve paid for your membership this year, feel free to ask us!

In case you might want to mark your calendar, our next international webinar with psychiatrist and psychotherapist Peter Gasser is scheduled for November 11th.

Information on David E. Nichols

David E. Nichols, PhD is currently an Adjunct Professor in the Eshelman School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC. He is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the Purdue University College of Pharmacy and was the Robert C. and Charlotte P. Anderson Distinguished Chair in Pharmacology, where he carried out teaching and research for 38 years prior to his retirement in 2012. In 2004 he was named the Irvine H. Page Lecturer by the International Society for Serotonin Research, he received the first Purdue Provost’s Outstanding Graduate Mentor award in 2006, and was named a Distinguished Alumnus by the University of Iowa College of Pharmacy in 2012.

He began studying psychedelics in 1969 while a graduate student and continued that research throughout his entire professional career, being one of only a few investigators able to research psychedelics after they were scheduled. In 1993 he founded the Heffter Research Institute (HRI), which funded the first rigorous clinical studies of psychedelics in humans after a nearly 40-year moratorium and served as its president for more than 25 years. HRI funded the groundbreaking Phase I and II studies of psilocybin for the treatment of depression, as well as substance use disorders. 

Dr. Nichols also synthesized the DMT used by Dr. Rick Strassman in his human studies, the MDMA that MAPS used for their Phase I and II clinical trials for PTSD, and the psilocybin used by several investigators for human clinical studies including the Phase I and II trials conducted at Johns Hopkins University by Roland Griffiths and his colleagues. He is considered the world’s leading expert on the chemistry of psychedelics. Dr. Nichols, although officially retired, remains active in the field through consulting and collaborations with several academic and pharmaceutical organizations and continues to publish scientific papers.

Zoom webinar Aug 30th 2021. MDMA therapy for the treatment of trauma: A clinical trial therapist’s perspective

MDMA-assisted psychotherapy has received a lot of attention in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but what exactly happens in an MDMA therapy session? Why is working with PTSD challenging, and how might MDMA help? What is the “inner-directed” approach utilized in clinical trials of MDMA-assisted therapy?

On Monday, August 30th 6PM UTC+3, the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research presents a Zoom webinar with Marcela Ot’alora G, principal Investigator, trainer, and therapist for studies investigating the safety and efficacy of MDMA-assisted therapy for the treatment of PTSD. Based on her extensive experience, the session includes a presentation and discussion with questions from the audience.

Marcela Ot’alora was born and raised in Colombia, and currently lives in Boulder, Colorado. She has an MA in Transpersonal Psychology from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado, and an MFA from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Marcela started her career as an installation artist and teacher, using art as a vehicle for self-expression and processing trauma with underrepresented communities. For over 20 years, she’s been in private practice working primarily with PTSD. Her interest and focus on trauma led her to understand the healing journey as an intimate re-connection with one’s innate essence through love, integrity, acceptance, and honoring of the human spirit. In addition to working with trauma and PTSD, she has dedicated her professional life to training and research. She has worked on various studies sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) as Principal Investigator and therapist using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for the treatment of PTSD. Additionally, she is a lead trainer and supervisor.

Tickets are available in two categories: 10 € (full price) and 5 € (students / low income participants) in our web store

For members of the association who’ve paid their membership fee for 2021, the event is free of charge. If you want to buy a membership, you’ll find our membership items in our web store: An email with a link for free registration has been sent to members of the association.

Conference: Psykedeelit 2021

Psykedeelit 2021
November 18–19, 2021
Conference for Psychedelic Research
Axelia, Auditorium Salin, Piispankatu 8, Turku

Psychedelic research has experienced a renaissance, and studies which have been neglected for years have been revived in universities across the world. Therapeutic potential of psychedelic substances for the treatment of various mental health problems is being investigated widely. Scholarly interest in psychedelics is not limited to clinical studies: psychedelic experiences are also being studied in consciousness research, philosophy, and cultural/social studies.

We are organizing the first Finnish conference for psychedelic studies, Psykedeelit 2021, at Åbo Akademi University on November 18–19, 2021. The conference is aimed at scholars working in Finland, and we hope that it will advance Finnish psychedelic research by bringing together people studying the subject from different perspectives.

Keynote speakers (via Zoom) are Dr. Katrin Preller (University of Zürich), who will lecture on the neurobiological mechanisms of psychedelics in a therapeutic context and Dr. Peter Sjöstedt-Hughes (University of Exeter), who will address the philosophical importance of experiences induced by psychedelic compounds.

The conference is interdisciplinary and open for researchers, students, and others whose work is related to psychedelics (psychologists, physicians, sociologists, philosophers, theologians, anthropologists, gender studies researchers, artists etc.). Presentations on research plans, reviews, and theses are also welcome. In addition to presentations and panel discussions, there will be plenty of time for informal discussion as well. The event will be streamed, and it is also possible to give the presentation online.

Please e-mail your abstract (200 words) in Finnish, Swedish or English to by September 15, 2021, at the latest. Abstracts will be assessed by an interdisciplinary committee. Members of the committee are Samuli Kangaslampi, Ph.D., Mika Pekkola, Ph.D., Aleksi Hupli, Ph.D., Erik Aro, MD/Ph.D., and Jussi Jylkkä, Ph.D. Decision on acceptance will be made by September 30, 2021.

The conference is organized by the organizing committee together with the Department of Psychology of Åbo Akademi and The Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research (Psyty).

More information about and registration to the conference will be available from this page soon.

Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapies – an overview of current research – Webinar on May 18th (in Finnish)

Psykedeeleistä ja niiden mahdollisesta terapeuttisesta hyötykäytöstä on viime vuosina puhuttu suomalaisessakin mediassa yhä useammin. Mistä psykedeeleissä ja psykedeeliterapiassa oikein on kyse? Mitä tutkimus on saanut aiheesta selville?

Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry järjestää tiistaina 18.5. klo 18:00 näihin teemoihin liittyvän, yleistajuisen webinaariluennon kaikille aiheesta kiinnostuneille. Luennoitsija Oskari Ventilä, LL, työskentelee psykiatriaan ja päihdelääketieteeseen erikoistuvana lääkärinä, minkä lisäksi hän on kognitiivisen käyttäytymisterapian psykoterapeuttikoulutuksessa.

Tapahtuma on yhdistyksen jäsenille maksuton ja muille avoin pientä pääsymaksua vastaan:
10 € / 5 € (opiskelijat ja vähävaraiset). 

Löydät tapahtumaliput verkkokaupastamme. Lisätietoa tapahtuman sivulta!

Taking a look at the methodological challenges in psychedelic research – Webinar on April 23th (in Finnish)

Psykedeelien terapeuttisista vaikutuksista on jonkin verran lupaavia tutkimustuloksia. On kuitenkin syytä huomioida, että psilosybiiniä ja muita klassisia psykedeelejä koskevat tulokset perustuvat vasta pienillä otoksilla toteutettuihin alustaviin tutkimuksiin. Jotta tuleva tutkimus voi tuottaa entistä luotettavampaa ja sovellettavampaa tietoa, suurempien osallistujamäärien ohella tarvitaan myös tutkimusten metodologisten ongelmien ja haasteiden sekä tutkimusasetelmien rajoitteiden lähempää tarkastelua.

Psyty järjestää perjantaina 23.4. klo 18:00 aihepiiriä käsittelevän, maksuttoman webinaarin, joka järjestetään Zoom-sovelluksen kautta. Tapahtuma on avoin kaikille Psytyn jäsenille. Jäsenyyden voi ostaa verkkokaupastamme – tapahtumalinkki lähetetään kaikille jäsenille.

Webinaari sisältää kaksi puheenvuoroa ja niiden aiheisiin liittyvää yleisökeskustelua.

Anna-Riikka Vehviläinen on syöpätauteihin erikoistuva lääkäri Kuopiosta. Hänen vuonna 2018 valmistunut lääketieteen syventävä opinnäytetyönsä ( tarkasteli vuosina 2008–2018 psilosybiiniä pääasiallisena tutkimuskohteenaan hyödyntäneitä kliinisiä tutkimuksia. Katsauksen fokus oli psilosybiinitutkimuksen metodologiassa.

Vehviläisen ammatillisen rakkauden ja mielenkiinnon kohteena on erityisesti elämän loppuvaiheen kärsimyksen lievittäminen – toisin sanoin hyvä kuolema. Näiltä osin hahmottelun alla onkin tutkimussuunnitelma psilosybiiniä hyödyntävän terapeuttisen hoidon mahdollisuuksien kartoittamiseksi palliatiivisen vaiheen syöpäpotilaiden ahdistuksen, masennuksen ja eksistentiaalisen kriisin hoidossa Suomessa.

Vehviläisen puheenvuoro nostaa esiin niitä tutkimusten metodologisia ongelmakohtia, joita hän opinnäytteessään käsitteli. Lisäkysymyksiä on noussut esiin edellä mainittua, palliatiiviseen hoitoon liittyvää tutkimusasetelmaa pohdittaessa. Ennen kaikkea toiveena olisi kuitenkin virittää vilkasta keskustelua, joka johtaa uusiin oivalluksiin ja kysymyksiin tämän monisyisen aiheen puitteissa.

Samuli Kangaslampi on psykologian tohtori ja tutkija Tampereelta sekä Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry:n puheenjohtaja vuonna 2021. Hän on tutkinut erityisesti psyykkisiin traumoihin ja mielenterveyteen liittyviä teemoja, mutta julkaissut kaksi vertaisarvioitua artikkelia myös psykedeeleihin liittyen. Näistä jälkimmäisessä ( hän nosti esiin psykedeelien mahdollisten terapeuttisten tai muutoin hyödyllisten vaikutusten psykologisia vaikutusmekanismeja käsittelevän tutkimuksen ongelmakohtia ja esitti metodologisia ehdotuksia tulevan tutkimuksen pohjaksi.

Hänen puheenvuoronsa käsittelee tämän artikkelin pohjalta haasteita ja ongelmia psykedeelien psykologisten vaikutusmekanismien tutkimuksessa sekä arvioi tutkimuskirjallisuudessa esitettyjä väitteitä siitä, millaisten prosessien kautta psykedeeleillä voisi olla positiivisia vaikutuksia mielenterveyteen tai muuhun hyvinvointiin. Lisäksi hän pohtii, millaisilla asetelmilla ja lähestymistavoilla aiheesta voitaisiin tulevaisuudessa saada luotettavinta tietoa.

Puheenvuorojen jälkeen on varattu runsaasti aikaa keskustelulle, kommenteille ja kysymyksille. Toivotamme kaikki jäsenet taustasta riippumatta tervetulleiksi osallistumaan ja keskustelemaan. Jäsenenämme saat tapahtumalinkin sähköpostiisi viimeistään tapahtumapäivänä.

Kevään aikana on tulossa myös toinen Psytyn jäsenille maksuton webinaari. 18.5. järjestettävässä tilaisuudessa psykiatriaan ja päihdelääketieteeseen erikoistuva lääkäri Oskari Ventilä esittelee tutkimusnäyttöön pohjautuvan yleiskatsauksen psykedeeleistä sekä niiden terapeuttisesta hyödyntämisestä osana mielenterveyshäiriöiden hoitoa. Lisätietoa tästä webinaarista myöhemmin.

PS. Jos olet jo aiemmin liittynyt jäseneksemme muttet ole vielä maksanut Psytyn jäsenmaksua vuodelle 2021, voit tehdä sen osoitteessa

Ketamine in Psychiatry – online seminar

Ketamine in Psychiatry – online seminar
20.1.2021 17:00 (Helsinki time, UTC+2)

Please note: Tickets may be bought until 15:00 (UTC+2), two hours before the event. If you have purchased a ticket, you should have received a participation link by email already. If you have any problems, send an e-mail to

Classic psychedelics may be making their way into psychiatric treatment in the next few years. But the psychedelic-like dissociative ketamine is already there. Join us on January 20, 2021 for a series of talks about the current and possible future roles of ketamine treatment in psychiatry.

Leading clinical and scientific experts on ketamine will address the following questions: Why is ketamine able to reduce depressive symptoms so rapidly? How is ketamine currently being used for treating depression and suicidality? And what do we know about the transdiagnostic potential of ketamine-assisted treatments beyond depression? A panel discussion and Q&A sessions will be included.

Confirmed speakers:

Samuel Kohtala, PhD (University of Helsinki; Weill Cornell Medicine, NY)
From receptors to networks: neurobiological mechanisms underlying ketamine’s antidepressant effects

Lowan Stewart, MD (Sante Fe Ketamine Clinic, NM; Axon Klinikken, Oslo)
Ketamine for depression and suicidality: Clinical experience from 3000 treatments

Elias Dakwar, MD (Columbia University, NY)
Clarifying the transdiagnostic efficacy of ketamine-assisted treatment: What do data from addiction treatment tell us?

The event is organized by the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research, Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry. The event is in English, and will be held remotely through Zoom. The event is aimed at clinicians, researchers, and students of relevant fields, but is open to anyone interested.

Entry fees are 20 € for professionals and 10 € for students and low-income participants. A 5 € discount applies for members of Psyty and Nätverket för psykedelisk vetenskap. Get your tickets at our online shop and you will receive a link to participate in the event the day before the event.

Psykedeelinäkymiä 2019: MDMA-assisted psychotherapy – why?

Saturday October 5th 2019: Seminar
Psykedeelinäkymiä 2019: MDMA-assisted psychotherapy – why?

On Saturday, October 5th, 2019, the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research will organize a full-day seminar titled “MDMA-assisted psychotherapy – why?” in Ruoholahti, Helsinki. The event is aimed at professionals and students of medicine, psychology, psychotherapy and other relevant fields, but is open to anyone interested in the topic.

Recent research on MDMA-assisted psychotherapy has garnered increasing attention. Clinical trials on the efficacy and safety of MDMA-assisted treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder have entered their final phase, and preliminary findings have aroused much interest in the field of mental health. In contrast to traditional pharmacotherapy, MDMA is not prescribed as a continuous course of medication, but instead offered during selected therapeutic sessions as part of a psychotherapeutic process.

The event will feature three international guest speakers. Professor of psychiatry and psychotherapy Torsten Passie from Hannover Medical School will present the history and mechanisms of action of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. Professor of psychiatry, colonel Eric Vermetten from Leiden University Medical Center and the Arq Psychotrauma Expert Group will discuss the application of MDMA and psychedelics in the treatment of trauma-related disorders. Adjunct professor in psychology Anne Wagner from Ryerson University will talk about MDMA-assisted therapy in the context of interpersonal relations and couples therapy.


09:00 Doors open
10:00 Opening words
10:15 Torsten Passie: MDMA-assisted psychotherapy: History, techniques and mechanisms of action
11:15 Break
11:45 Eric Vermetten: Toward a heat map of psychedelics in treatment of PTSD
12:45 Lunch break
14:00 Anne Wagner: MDMA as therapeutic catalyst – Using MDMA with couples and with cognitive behavioural treatment for PTSD
15:00 Break
15:30 Panel discussion: Glimpses into the future of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy
17:00 Conclusions
18:00 Doors close

All sessions are in English. The event will be held in the Kolumbus Auditorium of HTC Helsinki, located at Tammasaarenkatu 1-5, Ruoholahti, Helsinki.


Regular ticket 49€
Ticket for members of the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research (Psyty) 39 €
Ticket + one year membership of the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research 59 €
For students, a discount of 10 € is available (valid student card required).

Member discount is also available for members of our Swedish sister organization Nätverket för Psykedelisk Vetenskap.

The psychedelic research organization MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies) has kindly offered financial support for organizing the event. You can find more information on MAPS at their website.

Information on the lectures:

Torsten Passie: MDMA-assisted psychotherapy: History, techniques and mechanisms of action

The lecture will first provide an overview on the early therapeutic use of MDMA, including its legal use in Switzerland between 1988–1993 and 2010–2017. It appears that a certain “standard format“ for its therapeutic use was already established during this early use in therapy. Different facets of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy will be explored, including ideas about set and setting, boundaries with clients, integration and preparation, and possible complications. The treatment model developed by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies to treat PTSD will be also presented. The last part of the lecture reviews the psychological and neurophysiological mechanisms of action of MDMA in a psychotherapeutic context.

Torsten Passie, MD, PhD is Professor of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at Hannover Medical School and Visiting Scientist at the Dr. Senckenberg Institute for History and Ethics in Medicine, at the Goethe-University in Frankfurt. Apart from medicine, he has studied philosophy and sociology at Leibniz University Hannover and psycholytic therapy under Prof. Hanscarl Leuner, a leading authority on psychedelics and psycholytic therapy, at Zürich Psychiatric University Clinic. During 1997–2010, he led the Laboratory for Consciousness and Neurocognition at Hannover Medical School. Prof. Passie’s research on the psychophysiology of altered states of consciousness has included clinical studies with breathwork, cannabis, MDMA, laughing gas, ketamine and psilocybin. From 2012 to 2015 he was Visiting Professor at Harvard Medical School.

Eric Vermetten: Toward a heat map of psychedelics in treatment of PTSD

Psychedelic drugs are a class of substances with interesting properties as adjuncts to psychotherapy. The substantial change in mental state they produce may increase ability to engage with traumatic material in psychotherapy. After decades of prohibition, psychedelics are increasingly being studied again, specifically for their potential therapeutic applications in engagement with personal memories. This may promote a greater understanding of mechanisms of exposure as well as recovery from trauma. The lecture will present a heat map of different compounds, discussing rationale, administration, setting and evidence in treatment of PTSD.

Professor, Colonel Eric Vermetten, MD, PhD, is Principal Investigator of a new research initiative on a roadmap for medication-assisted psychotherapy in the Netherlands and Europe, including the use of a variety of psychedelics. He is a clinical psychiatrist and employed as strategic advisor of research at the Military Mental Health Service with the Dutch Ministry of Defense and the Arq National Psychotrauma Center. His clinical work involves working with uniformed officers with complex PTSD. He holds an endowed chair in Psychiatry at the Department Psychiatry at Leiden University Medical Center and is Adjunct Professor at the Department of Psychiatry at New York University Medical Center. He was trained in the Netherlands and the USA in psychiatry and neuroscience. His focus is on medical/biological as well as psychiatric aspects of complex psychotrauma in military as well as civilian populations. He has published over 250 papers, over 30 book chapters and edited several books on stress, trauma, complex PTSD and neuroscience. He is open to novel approaches in mental health, combining technology as well as novel pharmacotherapies. He lectures on the topic of PTSD, hypnosis, dissociation, resilience, military and veterans’ issues as well as novel approaches to therapy across the globe.

Anne Wagner: MDMA as therapeutic catalyst: using MDMA with couples and with cognitive behavioural treatment for PTSD

Relationships are fundamental in our worlds – be they present or absent, supportive or stressful. When an individual has experienced a trauma and is struggling in its aftermath, not only is the individual impacted, but so are those around them. Therefore, treating the aftermath of trauma in the context of relationships has strong potential power. Cognitive Behavioral Conjoint Therapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (CBCT for PTSD) was developed to work with dyads in the context of trauma recovery, and has demonstrated decreases in PTSD symptoms, increases in relationship satisfaction and improved partner functioning in numerous trials. Additionally, MDMA-assisted psychotherapy has demonstrated large decreases in PTSD symptoms across several studies. Therefore, in an effort to facilitate deep healing in the context of relationships, Dr. Wagner and colleagues combined CBCT for PTSD with MDMA in a pilot trial. This talk will share the process of combining these approaches, the outcomes of the trial, as well as illuminating the possibilities moving forward of using dyadic frameworks as well as protocol-based interventions with MDMA.

Anne Wagner, CPscyh, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and researcher who is committed to helping understand and improve trauma recovery. She is also the founder of Remedy, a mental health innovation community. She is Adjunct Professor at the Department of Psychology and an Associate Member of the Yeates School of Graduate Studies at Ryerson University. Anne completed a Canadian Institutes of Health Research Postdoctoral Fellowship at Ryerson University, and is the 2019 recipient of the Clinical Section of the Canadian Psychological Association’s Early Career Scientist Practitioner Award. She is currently the Past-Chair of the Traumatic Stress Section of the Canadian Psychological Association and her work has been funded by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research, and the Canadian Armed Forces.

Psykedeelinäkymiä 2019 – Psychedelics and integration

Thursday May 16th 2019: Lectures
Psykedeelinäkymiä 2019 – Psychedelics and integration

In May, the spotlight will again be on psychedelics, as the Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research (Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry, Psyty) organizes a lecture event in Helsinki on the theme of integrating psychedelic experiences. Psychologist and psychotherapist Marc Aixalà from Barcelona and psychologist Riikka Ajantaival will speak at the event.

The event is free of charge and will be held in lecture hall 12 of the main building of the University of Helsinki on Thursday, May 16, at 17:00.

According to recent research, one mechanism accounting for the possible therapeutic effects of psychedelics may be their ability to loosen up rigidified ways of thinking and acting, which might be considered an important goal for any therapeutic process. However, new points of view and insights that might emerge during sessions of psychedelic therapy will only be of long-lasting benefit if they reach the level of our everyday lives.

In integrating psychedelic experiences, the aim is to implement insights received under the influence in practice, for them to become part of one’s view of the world and daily habits. In light of this, it is important to allocate time not just for the experience itself, but also for preparation and for processing the experience afterwards. Integration may guide one to necessary life changes and help upkeep the positive momentum supporting such changes that many report receiving from sessions of psychedelic therapy. Integration may also help one deal with possible frightening or confusing aspects of their experience.

The event consists of two lectures.

Psychologist and psychotherapist Marc Aixalà:

Although integrating psychedelic experiences is often thought to be important, there are different interpretations of the nature, objectives, and scope of integration. Aixalà will draw on his experience of working in the ICEERS Integration and Support Service project, offering integration services in relation to psychedelic experiences. He will present the most important foundations and future directions of integration work. He will also shine a light on different scenarios that one may face in integration work as well as on emergency situations where a person has taken psychedelics and ended up in a psychological or spiritual crisis.

Psychologist Riikka Ajantaival:

Working as trainer for therapists and coordinator in an on-going international clinical trial on psilocybin-assisted therapy, Riikka Ajantaival will chart the importance of integration in a research context.

Time is reserved for questions from the audience after the lectures.


17:00 Doors
17:30 Marc Aixalà: Integrating psychedelic experiences: a psychotherapeutic approach
18:30 Riikka Ajantaival: Psychedelic integration in a research context
19:00 Q&A with speakers

Psykedeelinäkymiä 2018 – MDMA and psilocybin assisted therapy

All-day symposium on Saturday, May 12th 2018:
Psykedeelinäkymiä 2018 – MDMA and psilocybin assisted therapy

Research on the therapeutic potential and mechanisms of action of psychedelics is increasing steadily. In Finland, too, the first studies on the therapeutic effects of psilocybin are under preparation, and there’s professional interest in psychedelics across the fields of medicine, psychology, and the social sciences.

The Finnish Association for Psychedelic Research (Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry, Psyty) is organizing an all-day symposium on psychedelic research. Psykedeelinäkymiä 2018 will be held in Helsinki on Saturday, May 12th, at the Balderin sali venue near Senaatintori.

The theme of the event is MDMA and psilocybin assisted therapy.

The event will feature psychiatrist Ben Sessa, MD, from the UK, and Kim Kuypers, PhD, and Natasha Mason, MSc, from the Netherlands. The event is a follow-up to Psykedeelinäkymiä 2017, where two notable researchers, Robin Carhart-Harris, PhD, and Jordi Riba, PhD, lectured on the therapeutic potential of psychedelics and the results of recent brain imaging studies.


09:45 Doors open
10:15 Riikka Suutari (Psyty): Introduction to the use of psilocybin and MDMA in a therapeutic context
11:00 Ben Sessa: Child abuse, trauma, addictions and MDMA therapy: Have we finally found psychiatry’s new antibiotics?
12:00 Lunch break
13:30 Kim Kuypers: Neurobiological mechanisms underlying the prosocial effects of MDMA
14:30 Natasha Mason: Psychedelics & cognitive flexibility: Therapeutic implications
15:30 Coffee break
16:00 Panel discussion
17:00 Free conversation
18:00 Doors close

There will also be a panel discussion including all the speakers. The lectures and panel discussion will be held in English. In addition to the lectures, vice president of Psyty, psychologist Riikka Suutari will present a brief introduction to the theme of the event (likely in Finnish). The event is presented by president of Psyty, psychologist Samuli Kangaslampi. We’ll also have poster presentations on academic theses on psychedelics.

The event will be held in Balderin sali, Aleksanterinkatu 12, Helsinki.
Doors open at 9:45am. The last session ends at 5:00pm and doors close at 6:00pm.
The cafeteria will be open and in addition to coffee breaks, there will be a longer lunch break.

Tickets 40/50e (presale/door). Presale tickets are available from our online store!
Members of Psykedeelitutkimusyhdistys ry and our Swedish sister organization Nätverket för Psykedelisk Vetenskap (NPV) get a discount of 10 euros.