cult filmmaker Jon Reiss (Better Living Through Circuitry, Bomb It) explores the world of psychedelics and the profound impact plant medicines and entheogens have on healing, personal growth, and artistic expression with leading experts, healers, and teachers.

The first three episodes of it podcastPlantscendence, edited by Julia Sharpe-Levine and featuring music by Ani Matevos and Lucas Strazz, was released March 14 on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and iHeart.

“I started my own herbal medicine trip four years ago while looking for a way out of some mental ruts. Experimenting with various plants proved to be radically life-changing for the better,” Reiss said in a press release.

Within each episode, Reiss engages in insightful conversations with a wide variety of experts, professionals, artists, grief counselors, and everyday people who have harnessed the power of plant medicine to heal trauma, navigate loss, unlock creativity, and become more of your truth. me

The Plantscendence Podcast explore how many people have discovered solace, purpose, and deep connections through the use of plants, fungi, and other remarkable natural substances. Plantscendence provides a platform for both seasoned enthusiasts and curious newcomers to explore the intersection of plant medicine, spirituality, personal transformation and healing.

The first season of Plantscendance features guests including musician Vera Sola, US Army veteran and facilitator Itzel Barakat, and actress (and gay icon) Gina Gershon.

Vera Sola is a poet, composer and multi-instrumentalist whose music came like a shot in the dark after a plant medicine ceremony. The result was an epic and sprawling album, Shades, which she performed and arranged entirely on her own over a few months in 2017. Her follow-up album, Peacemaker, was released on February 2, 2024 on City Slang Records.

Itzel Barakat is a Panamanian-American who served six years in the United States Air Force. After his service, he returned to California and resumed his federal service as a wildland firefighter with the US Forest Service. After her first high-impact plant medicine journey, she began as a trainee facilitator at plant medicine retreats hosted by several veteran non-profit organizations. She serves as a veteran liaison and board member for the War Horse Creek organization, which provides equine-assisted training for trauma-affected veterans and first responders. Aligned with these organizations, it aims to offer veterans affected by PTS(D) unique healing modalities. Barakat is pursuing her master’s degree in clinical psychology to become a somatic therapist. Her goal as a therapist is to provide a whole-person approach to helping veterans, first responders, LGBTQ+ people, and other groups affected by trauma.

Additional guests for the remainder of the first season include Nganga Chor Boogie, artist Doris La Frenais, plant wisdom practitioner Sitaramaya Sita, author, teacher and healer Spring Washam, grief counselor Larry Carlat and author and initiate in traditional medicine Tricia Eastman.


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