In this episode, Joe interviews Michelle Janikian, Author of Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion. In the show, they talk about Michelle’s book, the need to speak about the unspoken, and how psychedelic experiences differ for everyone.
3 Key Points:
- Michelle Janikian is Author of the book, Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion, an easy-to-use guide to understanding magic mushrooms, from tips and trips to microdosing and psychedelic therapy.
- Psychedelics can help people, but they don’t solve all problems. Doing the homework after an experience is so important.
The psychedelic subculture has a lot of repressed stuff going on like sexual abuse. We need to speak about the things that aren’t necessarily good for the movement, we need to talk about all of it.
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- Michelle was originally a cannabis journalist
- Then she was a staff writer for Herb
- She then started writing her own book, Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion
- So much has been happening with mushrooms lately, and Michelle thought we really needed a resource on how to use mushrooms safely
- Ulysses Press did a few Cannabis books
- Michelle was approached by them, they wanted to do a mushroom guide
- She first took mushrooms when she was 17
- She took them for fun, but had so many deep and meaningful experiences too
- Michelle believes there are multiple right ways to use psilocybin, either therapeutically, ceremonially, recreationally, etc.
- “As long as you’re being safe with your surroundings, and with yourself, anyway is the right way (except for the fact that they are still illegal)” – Michelle
- In places where mushrooms are decriminalized, she mentions it totally changes your comfort level and experience when you’re not so afraid to have them on you
- Michelle just volunteered as a trip sitter at a week long women’s retreat in Mexico at Luz Eterna Retreats
- She says she doesn’t have all the answers, but the group environment can be really great for some, and not good at all for others
- She suggests, “do what feels right for you”
Routes of Administration
- There isn’t one ideal form of administration across all drugs
- Joe says one route of administration may be good for one person, and not for another
- You can powder the mushrooms and put them into capsules, put them on food, eat them plain, make a tea out of them, etc
- Michelle says she has a great recipe in her book for mushroom tea to prevent nausea
Different for Everyone
- Michelle felt a calling to write the book because she says many other books and publications were coming out, and she didn’t want some people to feel upset when psychedelics didn’t just ‘heal them’
- She says psychedelics help her, but they don’t solve all of her problems
- Doing the homework after an experience is so important
- She says she feels uninspired to write about the ‘black and white’, the same old, stereotypical narrative
- She wants to write about the grey, the unexpected, the in-between
- Michelle asks how do we talk about the things that aren’t right for the movement? Like the sexual abuse that happens in this space
- This psychedelic subculture has a lot of repressed stuff going on, and how do we talk about it?
- We need to keep learning in this field to keep improving, it is dense and detailed
- Michelle leaves us with a final thought, “read more books written by women!”
About Michelle Janikian
Michelle Janikian is the author of Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion, the down-to-earth guide that details how to use magic mushrooms “like an adult.” As a journalist, she got her start writing about cannabis for publications like High Times, Rolling Stone and Herb. Now, she writes a column for Playboy on all things drug related and also contributes regularly to DoubleBlind Mag, MERRY JANE, Psychedelic’s Today and others. She’s passionate about the healing potential of psychedelic plants and substances, especially psilocybin and cannabis, and the legalization and de- stigmatization of all drugs. Michelle studied writing and psychology at Sarah Lawrence College before traveling extensively in Latin America and eventually settling down in southern Mexico. Born in New York City and raised in New Jersey, Michelle ventures back to the States a few times a year to give talks and workshops on safe mushroom use and other cannabis and psychedelic related topics.