APS & SSDP at Rainbow Serpent Festival

WHEN: 11am – 1pm Monday 29th January

WHERE: The Solar Cinema, Lifestyle Village – Rainbow Serpent Festival

The session will include some short talks from members of APS and SSDP, then will evolve into a psychedelic story telling session.

Bring your tales to share!

Pictured: Psychedelic stories at EGA 2017 Psychedelic Symposium

Sydney – Post EGA 2017 Talks and Discussion

In support of last weekend’s Entheogenesis Australis 2017 Psychedelic Symposium, the APS are bringing speakers Neşe Devenot and Vince Polito to Sydney, to give a taste of EGA for those who missed out.
The talks will be followed by a Q&A session where members old and new are encouraged to share their stories, ask questions and open up discussions on psychedelic issues both global and local.
Cost: $10 on the door
Hibernian House

The Role of Poetic Language in Psychedelic Science

This presentation argues that poetry (i.e., experimental uses of language) represents crucial data about the content of psychedelic experiences within the context of scientific research. I call for the need to develop psychedelic studies in the humanities, since the discourse of science is essential but insufficient for exploring these liminal realms of consciousness. Although the majority of recent work in psychedelic studies relies on quantitative, objectively verifiable measures, my research demonstrates that psychedelic science is frequently characterized by a necessary reliance on both science and poetry. The process of exploring non-ordinary states of consciousness depends upon the communication of unprecedented subjective experiences—a process that necessarily relies on metaphor and other creative uses of language, since no ready-made vocabulary exists to describe these experiences. For this reason, I argue that literary theory and poetic interpretation are as crucial as chemical analysis for generating data in psychedelic science and the scientific study of consciousness more generally. Drawing on my recent scholarship as a Research Fellow with the New York Public Library’s Timothy Leary Papers, I demonstrate that psychedelic scientists have theorized about the experimental value of poetic language since the first wave of psychedelic research in the twentieth century. I connect this lineage to the psychedelic renaissance based on my experiences as a Research Fellow with the NYU School of Medicine, where I joined four other co-authors in collaboratively analyzing patient transcripts for underlying themes. My presentation ends by proposing future directions for clinical research based on Neiloufar Family’s call at Breaking Convention 2015 for renewed scholarship on the relationships between psychedelics, neurochemistry, and language, and I argue that “trip reports” deserve further study as an established genre of literature.

NESE DEVENOT is an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Humanities at the University of Puget Sound, where she teaches classes on psychedelics and literature and is also working on her book project, “Chemical Poetics: The Literary History of Psychedelic Science.” In 2016 she was awarded “Best Humanities Publication in Psychedelic Studies” from Breaking Convention in the United Kingdom as part of their First Annual Psychedelic Research Awards. As a 2016 Cosmic Sister Women of the Psychedelic Renaissance grant recipient, she is working on a journalistic account of a fully-funded trip to ayahuasca retreat centers in the Peruvian Amazon. She was a 2015-16 Research Fellow at the New York Public Library’s Timothy Leary Papers and also a Research Fellow with the New York University Psilocybin Cancer Anxiety Study, where she participated in the first qualitative study of patient experiences. She received her PhD in 2015 from the Program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory at the University of Pennsylvania, where she studied psychedelic philosophy and the literary history of chemical self-experimentation (“trip reports”). She taught the class “Drug Wars: The Influence of Psychoactive Rhetoric” as a 2014-15 Critical Speaking Fellow, and she was also a 2014-15 Andrew W. Mellon Graduate Research Fellow with the Penn Humanities Forum, where she worked on the project “‘Innumerable Fine Shades’: Psychedelics and Synesthesia in the Literary Self-Experiments of Aldous Huxley.” She is a founder of the Psychedemia interdisciplinary psychedelics conference, and the former editor of “This Week in Psychedelics,” a Reality Sandwich column that reported on psychedelic news in the media between 2011 and 2013. She was a founding member of the MAPS Graduate Student Association, which she moderated during 2011-13, and she has presented on psychedelics at numerous conferences in the United States, Canada, England, Australia, and the Netherlands. Her opinion articles about psychedelics and social justice have helped to inspire a psychedelic “coming out” movement in the United Kingdom.

The Science of Microdosing

Psychedelics are making their way back into mainstream science. High profile research teams are publishing findings in top journals showing that psychedelics can be used to better understand cognition, perception, neurobiology, psychopathology and wellbeing. At the same time there is increasing interest and acceptance of these substances amongst the general public. One topic of growing interest is the phenomenon of “microdosing” – taking extremely low doses of a psychedelic substance, most typically LSD or psilocybin. A microdose can be 1/10th or less of a recreational dose and users will often microdose regularly every 3 or 4 days over an extended period of time. Due to the very low dose, microdosers do not usually report the dramatic cognitive and perceptual changes that typically characterise psychedelic experiences, rather immediate effects are reported to be very subtle and sometimes barely noticeable. Despite this microdosers make a wide variety of claims for the benefits of microdosing, including improved vitality, positive mood, increased attention and greater creativity. Although microdosing has exploded in popularity in recent years, there has been very little empirical research on this topic and the accuracy of these claims has not been tested.

Our team conducted a systematic observational study of the effects of microdosing in healthy participants over the course of 6 weeks. Sixty regular microdosers provided baseline, daily, weekly, and post-study ratings of mood, attention, wellbeing, mindfulness, mystical experiences, personality, creativity and sense of agency. I’ll report what did and did not change for this group, talk about the role of placebo in the use of psychedelics, and try to answer the question of what really happens when people microdose.

VINCE POLITO is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders at Macquarie University. His research aims to understand how self-monitoring changes in altered states of consciousness. To do this he has investigated attentional changes in meditation, psychiatric symptoms of disturbed control, states of flow in expertise, hypnotic suggestions, body representation alterations in virtual reality, and the effects of psychedelic substances.

See psychedelic comedian Shane Mauss LIVE

The Australian Psychedelic Society are proud to support psychedelic comedian Shane Mauss’ Australian tour. We have two double passes to give away, one for Shane’s Sydney show and one for his Melbourne show. All you have to do to enter is scroll to the bottom of this page and put in your details.

We’ll announce the Melbourne winner on Monday the 16th of October and Sydney winner on Friday the 20th October. Make sure to enter your real full name for the door list and contact details so we can tell you if you’ve won.

Shane Mauss wants us all to have a good trip. Join him on a funny journey through the stigma, history, laws, and science of psychedelics when Shane brings his acclaimed comedy show about psychedelics, science and how they mesh to Australia this October.

His hilarious, thought-provoking, stand-up-storytelling comedy show will open your eyes to psychedelics in a new and truly unique way. Part stand-up, part storytelling, and part TED Talk combine for an informative and funny comedy show as Shane shares personal experiences and discusses the effects of hallucinogens such as mushrooms, LSD, and DMT.

Shane has played SXSW, guested on some of the world’s biggest comedy podcasts including You Made It Weird with Pete Holmes, WTF with Marc Maron, Duncan Trussell’s Family Hour, Ari Shaffir’s Skeptic Tank and Wil Anderson’s TOFOP, performed on TV everywhere from Conan to Jimmy Kimmel to Just For Laughs, has a Netflix special and has travelled across the US interviewing scientists about the meaning of life for his podcast Here We Are.

After a 100+ date tour of the USA Shane is ready to introduce A Good Trip to Australian audiences.


Thu 19 Oct – Sat 21 Oct (8.00pm)
Comics Lounge


Sat 28 Oct (7.15pm)
Comedy Store


SYDNEY – A New Understanding – The Science of Psilocybin screening

The Australian Psychedelic Society (Sydney) is proud to present our first official screening of A New Understanding: The Science of Psilocybin  as part of the 920 Coalition events. Held around the world each year on 20th September, the coalition is focused on research and the role that psychedelic psilocybin mushrooms play in our society and health care system.

A New Understanding explores the treatment of end-of-life anxiety in terminally ill cancer patients using psilocybin to facilitate deeply spiritual experiences as part of the first psychedelic research studies with terminally ill patients since the 1970s. The recent resurgence of psychedelic research is once again revealing the power of compounds like psilocybin to profoundly alter our understanding of both life and death in a society that devotes a great deal of attention to treating cancer, but very little to treating the human being who is dying of cancer.

Wednesday 20th September 2017
7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Hibernian House
342 Elizabeth Street
Surry Hills

Find the others.

MELBOURNE – A New Understanding – The Science of Psilocybin screening

This year, the Australian Psychedelic Society bring you Melbourne’s first official screening of A New Understanding: The Science of Psilocybin followed by a panel discussion on psilocybin, other psychedelics and the law.


6PM – 9PM
State Library of Victoria – Village Roadshow Theatrette


The past, present and future of psychedelic prohibition in Australia

Steph is a passionate harm reduction advocate, community lawyer, and partygoer. She’s coordinated Harm Reduction Victoria’s DanceWize program and volunteered at a community law centre for almost the past 5 years, and has close to a decade’s experience working in community services more broadly, including experience working and volunteering for aligned organisations internationally.

Monica is a social scientist at the Drug Policy Modelling Program, part of Australia’s National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of New South Wales. Monica’s work examines the social and public health implications of digital technologies for people who use illicit and emerging psychoactive drugs. Research topics emerging from this interest include online drug markets or cryptomarkets and policy responses to novel psychoactive substance evolution. She specialises in engaging hard-to-reach networks and groups in digital spaces in conversations about research and policy, to inform policy change. Monica also serves as an Editor for policy-related articles at the International Journal of Drug Policy, and as the Director of Research at the international drug harm reduction community Bluelight.org. Monica is a lead researcher for the Global Drug Survey. She is also a regular attendee and contributor to EGA, from the mid-2000s.

Daniel is a psychonaut and activist with an insatiable thirst for knowledge and love of sharing said knowledge. Daniel has over a decade of experience volunteering with harm reduction groups such as Rave Safe Queensland, knowledge sharing/administrating/moderating online drug forums/groups and specifically informing people about psychedelics, namely plant and fungi based compounds. Murray Witham is Daniel’s father. Daniel will be speaking a little about a horrific 2015 incarceration in NSW for psilocybin mushrooms, as well as various other related topics including the APS campaign for law reform and how you can help.

James recently tried psilocybin mushrooms for the first time at age 69, after researching them thoroughly when his son was incarcerated for, “a commercial quantity of psilocybin” after being arrested with a mere 23 grams of dry mushrooms in a 5 gram bag (which was included in the weight) in NSW back in 2015. Above 25 grams of mushrooms is a seriously indictable offence with a max sentence of 25 years imprisonment in NSW. It takes 250 grams of methamphetamine to be classed as a seriously indictable offence in the same state, which shows the insane disparity of current drug laws. He has been begging for a stage to share his insights about drug law and it’s effects on otherwise law abiding citizens. He will be travelling all the way from Qld to speak publicly about his recent life changing experiences. A major highlight being his experience with 4 dried grams of P. Subaeurginosa for breakfast one morning, only a couple of months ago.

ANU OFFICIAL TRAILER from A New Understanding on Vimeo.

We will be paying special attention to the prohibition of psychedelics in Victoria and Australia: The history, the effect it has had on the community for the past 50 years and our plans to change this in 2018.

Find the others.

The Beginning of the End of the War on Drugs Party – SSDP Conference Launch


Students for Sensible Drug Policy Australia are having their first ever conference and they’ve invited the Australian Psychedelic Society to help launch the event with a party!

Gather and celebrate the achievements of both the APS and SSDP. Let’s celebrate the psychedelic renaissance, the push towards drug law reform and a beginning to the end of the war on drugs.

We’re gathering some bass-witches to wobble your cellular mainframe, along with some other sensory joy. If you have something artistic you’d like to offer to help us pretty-up the night, get in touch!


Music from DJs:

Emily Roseman

Dj Vixen


Friday the 11th of August 2017


City of Melbourne Bowls Club
Flagstaff Gardens  WEST MELBOURNE

Melbourne Documentary Screening: ‘Notes on Rave in Dublin’

Notes On Rave In Dublin is a roller coaster ride through the birth pangs of dance music in Dublin. From the democratic romance of those early loved up dance floors, to how a cold social stratification and commercialisation crept back. Leaving it up to a network of outsider labels, pirates and ravers to establish an indigenous scene that they call their own. This is a story of how an underground works, mutates and survives.

The Australian Psychedelic Society invite you to join us for this film’s first screening in the Southern Hemisphere.

Notes on Rave in Dublin provides a timely analogy for the challenges we are locally experiencing, such as ‘Operation Safe Night’ and the Police Minister’s announcement that there are plans to ‘crackdown’ on doofs.

Read about the story behind the proposed crackdown, written by Dancewize’s Steph Tzanetis and published by AOD Media Watch.

On Saturday 17 of June, the Herald Sun published what they claim was an exclusive interview with Police Minister Lisa Neville. They “revealed” that ‘Police [were] to get new “stop and search” powers to stamp out drugs at dance festivals’. READ MORE…

We’ve arranged speakers from around Melbourne’s club scene to talk about their initiatives that support the creation of safe and inclusive spaces.

Speakers include:

Enpsychedelia‘s Nick Wallis will host as MC.

Come hang out with the community and watch this documentary about the wonders of the underground music scene.

$10 on the door

First in, first served; you’re welcome to BYO snacks and pillow (just in case we fill up).

Thank you to the Hope Street Arts Collective for hosting this event.

Adelaide Meet & Greet

A casual opportunity for people in Adelaide interested in psychedelics to get to know each other each and discuss this most interesting of subjects.
Our goal is introduce new people and link up existing networks to begin to build a larger, more knowledgeable community.

Sunday the 25th of June at 1pm

Gather at the medicinal garden which is next to the cactus & succulent garden.
On both maps the cactus & succulent garden is numbered “5”.
The medicinal garden is the circular garden immediately above and left of the cactus garden, and below ‘Gingko Gate’.

Inaugural Sydney Meetup and Movie

Please join us for our inaugural launch at 107 projects, Redfern, Sydney where we will be screening the film ‘Dying to Know: Ram Dass & Timothy Leary

Event starts at 12:30pm on Sunday July 9th

Tickets $8.31 + bf online (any tickets left will be sold on the door for $10)

The film is an intimate portrait that celebrates the complex, controversial characters and epic friendship between Harvard psychology professors Timothy Leary and Richard Alpert as they probed the edges of consciousness and shaped a generation through their experiments with psychedelics. Narrated by Robert Redford, this intimate portrait spans 80 years of rare footage and never before seen interviews that re-assess the lives of two iconic figures, their work, their successes and failures, the times they lived in and their remarkable shared journey through life.

We will begin with an informal introduction by the organisers and a brief primer to the film grounded in personal encounters with Ram Dass himself by one of our members. After the film we will be opening up a dialogue with those wanting to stay, to discuss our shared vision and what members see for the future of the Sydney APS with a focus on APS objectives and discussing strategies for building and supporting the psychedelic community in Sydney.

Dying to Know: Ram Dass & Timothy Leary from Dying To Know Movie on Vimeo.

APS June Meetup – Psychedelic Science Recap

The Australian Psychedelic Society (APS) are hosting an afternoon of psychedelic science at the The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, University of Melbourne.

In 2016, a number of organisations who helped bring together the Australian Psychedelic Society hosted a fundraising dinner (click the link to hear interviews and read more about the event) at The Florey Institute, as part of the Global Psychedelic Dinner. The event helped to raise $6000 for the Multi-Disciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) which has gone toward helping MAPS purchase one kilogram of MDMA manufactured under current Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), to be used in their upcoming Phase 3 clinical trials to make MDMA-assisted psychotherapy a legal treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

You can read more about the on-going research at the MAPS website.

The struggle to get similar research happening in Australia is ongoing. Dr. Stephen Bright from Australia’s Psychedelic Research In Science and Medicine (PRISM) spoke with the ABC recently, “The key problem that we have is we’ve faced academic conservatism… Here we have treatment that has a tremendous amount of evidence that is supporting it, yet the universities are not willing to engage in it for fear of the potential consequences, such as poor media.”

The conversation around MDMA psychotherapy in the United States has largely revolved around PTSD in returning war veterans. PTSD can occur in people for a number of reasons, including war and extreme emergency situations. Front line emergency workers such as paramedics, firefighters, emergency room doctors and nurses and police officers often face potentially traumatic situations that may result in a PTSD diagnosis.

MDMA assisted psychotherapy for PTSD is just one of many psychedelics that have medicinal purposes that could help to revolutionise psychiatric care.

A small handful of APS core people attended the recent Psychedelic Science conference in Oakland, Caliufornia. To get a taste of what to expect at the upcoming event, check out this post:

Psychedelic Science 2017 – Dean and Mel chat with Dr. Ben Sessa

At our upcoming event, five speakers will be updating you on the latest research they discovered at the Psychedelic Science conference in Oakland. You will also have a chance to ask questions to the panel of speakers.

Our speakers are:

  • Dr Nigel Strauss – Psychiatrist at the Millswyn Clinic and Professor at Deakin University.
  • Dr Martin WIlliams – President of PRISM, Structural biologist
  • Melissa Warner – Founding member of the Australian Psychedelic Society
  • Dr Dean Wright – Founding member of the Australian Psychedelic Society
  • Dr Giancarlo Allocca – Neuroscientist at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health

The event kicks off at 3pm on Sunday the 4th of June. After the event, we will be heading to a local pub for more discussions, drinks and food.

Entry is $10 plus booking fee at Eventbrite.

We will also have our psychedelic book store setup at the event, so bring along some extra money if there is some psychedelic literature you’d like to get your hands on.

Here are three videos from last year’s event at The Florey Institute. These are provided courtesy of Entheogenesis Australia (EGA) who are holding Australia’s premiere psychedelic conference in December. Tickets on sale now.

Dr Martin Williams – Psychedelic medical research in Australia: The long and winding road

Dr Olivia Carter – Psilocybin in the lab and clinic

Dr Stephen Bright – A Critical Analysis of Psychedelics and Psychology