Altered States of Context is a new podcast about psychedelics and psychotherapy hosted by Nathan Gates and Brian Pilecki.
Altered States of Context explores the uncertain fit between a medicalized view of individual mental illness and a psychedelic view of suffering and change, and explores the many possibilities, opportunities, and pitfalls that emerge from this union. Podcast guests include leaders within the field of psychedelic medicine who bring their expertise and perspective to help understand the past, present, and future of psychedelic-assisted therapy. Whether you are new to psychedelics or have been around the block a few times, this podcast is suitable for a wide audience. Nate and Brian also try to “keep it weird” by highlighting some of the aspects of psychedelic experience that make it so interesting, fun, and transformative.
The podcast particularly features functional contextualist approaches to psychotherapy, such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and discusses how such approaches are a good fit for psychedelic preparation and integration. ACT and related approaches are being used in a number of studies on psychedelics and are going to be an important part of this burgeoning field.
New episodes are released every other Monday and can be found on most podcast platforms such as Audible and Apple. Please also check out Altered States of Context on Facebook or Twitter and provide feedback about the podcast or ideas for future episodes.
Nathan W. Gates, MA, LCPC is educated, trained and credentialed as a professional counselor, which is how he earns his living as a private practitioner in rural West-Central Illinois. His career and training have been inspired by insights from psychedelics medicine for more than 20 years. From earning his MA from Naropa University to finding his theoretical home beneath the umbrella of contextual behavioral science, he has consistently pursued an integrative understanding of the human condition. He believes that a central promise and challenge of psychedelic medicine is to create a fully integrated life. We are all called to make sense of our brief time on this planet and purposely serve that which we love. To that end, Nathan strives to weave his roles as psychotherapist, husband, homeschooling parent, ecological citizen, freelance psychedelic integration specialist, entrepreneur, permaculturist and cattle farmer into a sensible and coherent whole. His success in this endeavor is ultimately an open question, but it puts him in a position to learn a great deal from a very wide variety of human beings. This often leads to great conversations. He is also a founder of the psychedelic special interest group with the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science, which has been a tremendous wellspring for creative and ultimately fruitful psychedelic collaborations for people around the world. Additionally, he spoken at regional and international conferences on the usefulness of utilizing contextual behavioral perspectives to make sense of and integrate insights from psychedelic experiences.
Dr. Brian Pilecki is a clinical psychologist at the Portland Psychotherapy Clinic that specializes in the treatment of anxiety disorders (OCD, generalized anxiety, social anxiety, panic disorder), trauma and PTSD, and matters related to the use of psychedelics. He completed a post-doctoral fellowship at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and practices from an orientation based in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). Brian also has extensive experience in the areas of mindfulness and meditation, and incorporates them into his therapy with clients. He is an active researcher and has published on topics such as anxiety disorders, mindfulness, and the relationship between theory and practice in psychotherapy. At Portland Psychotherapy, Brian is also involved in research in the use of psychedelics for the treatment of mental health problems.