Soldiers, PTSD and the Shamanic Plant Medicine Iboga
December 13th, 2012
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Whether you agree with American foreign policy or not, itâ€™s difficult to imagine disagreement over the fact that soldiers returning from war should be given the best possible care to recover from physical and psychological injuries incurred in military service.
Not only is it naturally human and compassionate to wish for your fellow man to be healed, healthy and happy, but, it is also dangerous to reintroduce thousands of emotionally scarred war fighters into society, as many of them will go on to serve the public in law enforcement and security roles.
This year, 2012, Army suicides in Afghanistan (a conflict that began in 2001) have surpassed combat deaths. Military suicides are presently at an all-time high. And here at home, a militarized police state is consuming us. We are a nation in need of healing.
Our young men and women are returning home with troubling psychological wounds that are going unaddressed with the traditional methods of counseling, prescription drugs, coping skills, and drug and alcohol abuse.
There are two fundamental problems here. First there is the root problem â€“ our society is suffering from the stress of being in perpetual conflict. Secondly, the treatments we offer our military post-conflict do not work. Since there is little to no public demand for significant change in foreign policy, it is unlikely that much can be done at present to strike this problem at the root, therefore, we are left with finding the best possible treatments for veterans afflicted with combat PTSD.
Are the best treatments illegal?
Iboga is a psychoactive plant medicine derived from the root bark of the Iboga tree, found in certain parts of Africa. It is administered ceremonially in rites of passage and healing ceremonies tended to by master shaman who have successfully negotiated the spiritual realms into which the medicine plunges its participants. It is known for its power to bring a person into direct contact with the realms of the deceased, and also for allowing a person to see deeply into their past in a way that permits open communication with themselves as they were in the past. The psychoactive journey typically lasts for up to 36 hours and dramatically detoxifies the physical body as well as the psycho-spiritual body.
For veterans suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder it offers significant hope in purging a person of the horrors and guilt of war.
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is defined as a severe anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to an event that caused physiological traumaÂ (Wiki). This disorder disables the individual from fully enjoying their life. PTSD leaves the individual with an anxiety that causes inconsistencies in the many important facets of their life. With proven results, many people are relieving their anxiety and helping cure their post-traumatic stress disorder with ibogaine or iboga, a rootbark of the natural plant which is native to Gabon, Africa. Ibogaine is a naturally occurring psychoactive substance that has numerous uses. Iboga has also been used widely to treat opiate addiction. Now many people are inquiring about the uses of Iboga to naturally treat PTSD.
What iboga offers you is a psychological environment to tie up any loose ends that are getting in the way of your mind functioning smoothly. It resets your mind while putting you in a dream state of REM sleep, while you are conscious and able to fully access your subconscious, memories, and deepest fears and beliefs. You are then given the free will to choose what to let go of, permanently. (Iboga House)
In the following video, Iraqi war veteran, Rob, describes how PTSD overtook his life after serving 12 years in the military. He candidly discusses how he couldnâ€™t relate to typical treatments, how his life became dysfunctional, and how he found the medicine Iboga and received thorough healing from participating in Shamanic ceremonies with this ancient spiritual medicine.
In this video, Patrick, a demolitions expert with the Canadian Navy who served in Afghanistan, discusses the problems that developed in his life after the war and how Iboga and the medicine healer Moughenda helped him to restore his connection to himself and heal from his past.
The natural medicine Iboga should be legal and readily available to veterans who wish to try it, and the ceremonial Shamanic techniques involved should be revered for their abilities to liberate a person from a lifetime of psychological pain. However, Iboga is currently listed as a Schedule I drug under the Federal Controlled Substances Act, and users face harsh sentencing for possession of this natural root bark.
Sending a man to war to be a participant in slaughter then sending him to jail for consuming a healing plant is a travesty of American morals and a beacon of modern hypocrisy.