PT362 – Psychedelic Storytelling: Transforming Out Loud

October 7, 2022
Featuring: Cory Firth

In this episode, Victoria interviews Cory Firth: Chief Storyteller at the Nikean Foundation, one of the world’s leading charities funding psychedelic research and advancing education.

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In this episode, Victoria interviews Cory Firth: Chief Storyteller at the Nikean Foundation, one of the world’s leading charities funding psychedelic research and advancing education.

Rick Doblin has famously said that while the FDA responds to data, it’s stories that most resonate with people, and the current direction of the Nikean Foundation is rooted in that idea – that there is a massive population of “psychedelic seekers” who could likely benefit greatly from the psychedelic experience, but who just need to hear that one special story that inspires them to take the leap towards change. While the efficacy of psychedelics and psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy is proven over and over again in study after study, most people don’t connect with that data – it’s the nuance and human connection in personal stories that cut through the “drugs are bad” media bias, and Firth believes that as more people share their transformational tales – who “transform out loud” – society can really change for the better. 

He discusses the value of storytelling in affecting change on multiple levels; the idea of integration as an ongoing practice; the wisdom gained through trauma; and the trust and vulnerability required to be able to share a powerful story. And to practice what they preach, he and Victoria share their own personal stories of healing with the help of psychedelics. We hope they’re stories that someone out there needs to hear.

The Nikean Foundation is aiming to build the largest collection of transformational stories, and they want to hear yours. You can join in by sharing your story at their website, or by sharing the site with a friend. You can submit now, but they officially launch this storytelling project next week, on October 14 at Horizons NYC, where Victoria, Kyle, and David will be! If you haven’t bought a ticket yet, use code PSYCHEDELICSTODAY-NY-17 at checkout to receive 17% off, and when you’re there, come say hello!

Notable Quotes

“Everybody who gets into psychedelics in a transformational way does so because of a friend or a colleague or someone in their family that tells them a story about how they were able to experience them and find some healing potential. …One of the main ways people get into this is through stories. How can we put a little gasoline on that fire and see how it can evolve?”

“You can’t change someone’s mind unless you show them how you changed yours.”

“My goal, eventually, is to have enough stories where someone who’s seeking something can come to the site and see another story of someone who looks like them, in their position – but in the future, where the potential has been reached. They see the potential in themselves. They see the potential of the transformational mechanisms of psychedelics, and they’ve gone through it, and now they see that it’s possible for them.”

Links The Nikean Foundation

Psychedelics Today: PT342 – Spencer Hawkswell – The Right to Psilocybin in Canada: TheraPsil’s Charter Challenge (Tim Ferriss) MDMA-Assisted Therapy for PTSD Psychedelic Integration List- Mental Health Support Practitioners by Location

How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us about Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence, by Michael Pollan Where the Psychedelic Revolution Is Headed, According to the Guy Who (Arguably) Started It (Rick Doblin’s discussed quote is here) Psilocybin Therapy Offered Cancer Patient Thomas Hartle More Than He Could Have Asked For David Nutt’s Drug Harm Ranking scale.


In this Episode

Cory Firth

Cory Firth is a human-impact community builder, communications entrepreneur, and plant medicine advocate who has spent the last five years building communities in the mental health and wellness space. After a 20 year battle with depression, Cory has committed his career to a vision of the future where the stigmatization of mental illness is replaced with compassion, transformation, and community connection; a world where we work together to reunite with our innate abilities to heal, overcome, and actualize our full potential. As the former Executive Director of the Canadian Psychedelic Association, Cory is passionate about collaborating with other psychedelic advocates to share their transformation stories with the world.

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