army combat veteran ptsd plant medicine ayahuasca army psychedelic integration

On this episode of The Psychedelic Integration Podcast, we’re sharing a remarkable plant medicine and integration success story from one of our closest friends and integration coaching clients. Shawn Patterson is an Iraq combat veteran who served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army. In this episode, he speaks openly about the traumas he experienced both on and off the battlefield, and how those traumas ultimately led him to a path of healing PTSD with ayahuasca and other plant medicines. We are honored to share this very personal and inspiring story with you.

EP 016 | Shawn Patterson, Army Combat Veteran on Healing PTSD with Ayahuasca

In this episode, Shawn shares about…

  • Growing up in the 90’s era of street crime, drugs, and choosing to join the Army as a way out
  • Enlisting and heading into basic training one month after September 11th
  • Transitioning from civilian life into military life, where emotions like fear were not encouraged or expressed
  • Going into combat in Kuwait in 2003, at the beginning of the Shock and Awe phase of the Iraq War
  • The reality of life in the military, getting into a rhythm, and normalizing living in a war zone
  • Surviving, training, and the strong character of people living with the daily threat of combat
  • Coming to terms with possibly not making it home
  • Returning home after a year on the front lines, feeling older than your age, and feeling alien after the experience
  • Feeling anger around veterans being portrayed as victims in the media
  • What the PTSD and trauma experience looked like for him
  • Using drugs and alcohol as an ineffective coping tool and hitting multiple rock bottoms
  • Deciding to work with ayahuasca in Ecuador and facing unrealistic expectations
  • Working with plant medicine over time with a spiritual community
  • Getting help from the VA, and why the pharmaceutical approach doesn’t solve the whole problem for everyone
  • The problem with 12 step programs
  • Finding a winding spiritual path with plant medicine and digging into core issues
  • Getting reminders and new perspectives from ayahuasca and feeling empowered to make life changes
  • Shifting his consciousness toward self-care and away from the victim mentality
  • Cultivating gratitude
  • Making big decisions and life changes with the guidance of the medicines
  • Building a long term, respectful relationship with ayahuasca, San Pedro, and peyote
  • Following a minimum effective dose strategy coupled with integration and doing the work
  • The BIG integration lesson
  • Plant medicines and appreciating being sober
  • Avoiding patterns of taking plant medicine without purpose
  • Advice for veterans who are interested in working with plant medicines
If you enjoyed this episode, please leave us a review HERE. Positive reviews help us reach more people who are seeking transformation with psychedelics. You can write a review on Apple Podcasts by going to the Ratings and Reviews section and clicking on Write a Review. Thank you for your support!

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