Frequently Asked Questions

Magic mushrooms have a rich history as part of human healing, spiritual practice and psychological well-being. That said, limited research and misleading information means that much of what you’ll hear about psilocybin or psychedelic therapy doesn’t tell the full story.

 

Below are some frequently asked questions about psilocybin, psychedelic therapy, our retreat location, and our company history. And if you don’t see the answers you’re looking for, feel free to get in touch.

About Psilocybin Mushrooms

The risks around the use of psilocybin mushrooms mainly relate to set and setting rather than the mushrooms themselves.

At MycoMeditations, we go to great lengths to ensure your psychedelic experience is a positive one. A big part of this is integration before and during your retreat where you’ll meet with experienced facilitators and trained therapists and establish your mindset for the experience. You can count on us to take care of the setting, creating the right mix of who, what, where, and when for your retreat experience. Our experienced staff are present throughout to make sure that your experience is both safe and transformative.

That said, please do not consume psilocybin mushrooms, as the experience can trigger an episode. To help us accurately anticipate individual needs, please be thorough on your application regarding mental illness, medications, etc. We reserve the right to deny psilocybin onsite if your application isn’t complete or accurate.

There’s a lot of fear that comes along with having a “bad trip”. Even with the proper dosage and preparation, participants do occasionally have a challenging session.

The first thing we’d like to do is reframe the idea of a “bad trip”. Many of the stories you’ve heard about psilocybin originate from completely different contexts. The dosages may not have been known or the mushrooms were taken in the wrong environment. MycoMeditations eliminates some of this uncertainty by careful consideration of set and setting at our retreats.

The other thing to note is that there is often an upside to a challenging session. From our years of experience, we’ve know that difficult psilocybin experiences can be extremely therapeutic, producing deeper insights and breakthroughs for meaningful relief.  Should you have a difficult session, our facilitators and therapists are present during every moment. With training and firsthand experience with psilocybin, they’ll be able to comfort and support through difficult moments and offer guidance towards the release of what you’re struggling through.

Your first dose is on the lighter side (3–4-grams) to help you get familiarized with the experience and to help us learn how you respond to the mushrooms.

Depending on a set of factors, the second dose is typically higher (5–8-grams).

And based on how the second experience feels for you and what we observe, the third dose may be either an increase or a decrease. Typically most participants increase their dosage to dig deeper (8-12 grams), while others stay at their session two dose or go back down to consolidate their experiences.

Please note that there is not a single, ideal dosing protocol, as everyone has different needs. More is not necessarily better. The dose depends entirely on what you are comfortable with, what you feel is best for you, and what we think is an effective dose for you.

While nobody can guarantee what a psilocybin experience will be like for you, a higher dose is generally correlated with a more intense experience.

“Intense” in this sense can mean a variety of things, such as feeling less in control, stronger bodily sensations, and an increasing dissolution of your familiar sense of self (ego) and external reality. Always remember that these experiences are only temporary! It’s a new state of being, but also an opportunity to heal wounds and learn things in a way you never could have imagined.

Our mushrooms are legally sourced from our own local cultivation company.  We get all of our mushrooms fresh, dry them ourselves, grind the harvest into a powder, and encapsulate them into 0.5-gram pills.  Since there is some variance in the potency of individual mushrooms, we do this to ensure consistent and measurable potency.

The therapeutic impact of psilocybin is somewhat of a mystery, but the neuroscience shows that it works by temporarily taking your Default Mode Network (DMN) – the part of your brain responsible for self-criticism, self-reflection, rumination, and experiential self – offline.

With this part of your brain quieted, you can disengage from repetitive rumination and become more receptive to new perspectives. It can also help with the recall of repressed memories, processing of unresolved events and emotion, embracing various aspects of ourselves, and creating an environment of neuroplasticity.

A common analogy to describe this in the psychedelic therapy world is to imagine a ski hill with grooves left behind from past skiers. Without fresh snow, these grooves influence where the next skier will go. The skiers represent thoughts, feelings, beliefs, etc. and the grooves represent the remaining influence on the way we live. People suffering from a mental illness find themselves stuck following the same repetitive, negative grooves out of habit because these ways of being are ingrained. Psilocybin mushrooms represent a fresh snowfall that covers the old grooves, allowing you the ability to create a healthier, more positive path forward.

You can. However, we strongly advise that you instead consult a licensed mental health professional about tapering off your medications prior to consuming psilocybin mushrooms with us.

Psychiatric drugs will have a significant dampening effect on the experience, and since you’re investing your time, money and energy into healing, we recommend your system is clear of other medications to let the psilocybin do its best work.

Serotonin syndrome is one possible side effect of consuming psychedelics while on certain psychiatric drugs, but this risk is negligible for psilocybin mushrooms. This risk is largely associated with ayahuasca since it involves compounds that serve as MAOI-inhibitors, which can indeed make serotonin syndrome a risk.

About Jamaica

There are no penalties for cultivating, selling, administering or consuming psilocybin mushrooms in Jamaica. Rather than technically being listed as legal by the government, psilocybin is simply unregulated. The Jamaican government is starting to see the therapeutic value it offers the island and the benefits to Jamaica’s tourism, so it is viewed positively overall.

Yes. There are some parts of Jamaica where safety is of concern, though you could say that about most countries in the world. You should take reasonable precautions when traveling through big cities, in unknown areas, or at night to ensure you have the best experience during your time in the country.

Our retreats take place in quiet, peaceful communities throughout Jamaica. These close-knit, reserved communities are the perfect place for our retreats as you will have all the peace and privacy you need. There are few concerns over safety in these parts of the island.

Yes!  You’ll have time between sessions to enjoy Jamaica, and going for a swim is one of the best ways.

All of our retreat accommodations are located either directly beside the ocean or a very short walk away. Please note that while the beaches by our retreat options are safe, there are rip tides in some areas. If you’re unsure about whether an area is suited for swimming, you can always ask at your accommodation.

There are some shops in the area where you can stock up on bare essentials, but we recommend you bring most of what you need with you. Prior to your retreat we will send you a list of recommended items that will be harder to find in Jamaica!

If you forget something, there will always be an operations manager at your retreat who can assist you in getting anything you urgently need.

Yes, you may drink tap water, but it may taste different than what you’re used to. Filtered water is always accessible at the retreat properties as well.

The weather in our retreat locations is quite warm. The mornings and evenings are usually perfect with temperatures at their hottest in the middle of the day. To give you an idea, the average maximum temperature in the summer months is 88°F.

The majority of your retreat will take place in shaded areas with plenty of indoor access. It’s up to you on how much time you’d like to spend in the heat!

Many Jamaican citizens are simply unaware of psilocybin mushrooms. The ones who do don’t know much about them yet. Since Jamaicans are supporters of natural medicines, we find their perspective is generally positive once they know people consume the mushrooms for healing.

We’ve hired many people who grew up right in Treasure Beach to join our retreat staff and serve as valuable members of our team. Being supporters of local businesses for a long time, and getting involved in community support efforts has made MycoMeditations a well-known and supported presence in the community of Treasure Beach.

About MycoMeditations

We are one of the most experienced psychedelic wellness retreats in the world with a proven group retreat model. And for the last seven years, we’ve been holding retreats and discovering the dosing methods that yield the most profound results.

MycoMeditations is one of the only psilocybin-assisted retreats where you can experience three sessions over the course of a week. We do this because we’ve seen first-hand how guests benefit from multiple doses over a short period of time. This also gives us an opportunity to optimize your dose and find the sweet spot for you. While a week makes our retreats more costly than others, it is also what makes the retreat so impactful.

We have also become known for our willingness to work with higher doses if we feel it is appropriate for a guest’s needs. We do this because we have the utmost trust in psilocybin mushrooms as a medicine and our therapists and facilitators to help guests navigate their experiences in beneficial ways.

We’ve hosted over 750 people, and administered more than 2000 doses of psilocybin mushrooms through our retreats. At each retreat, we’ve been able to refine our process even more and grow into one of the most trusted psychedelic retreats in the world.

Aspire. We’ve experienced time and time again that the people who get the greatest results are those who are truly willing to reach the bottom of their issues and aspire to heal, no matter how difficult that process might end up being.

Trust. Psilocybin mushrooms help us in mysterious ways. The path you may envision going down on your retreat may take a very different course. While they don’t always give what you expect, they will always give you what you need. We invite you to trust that there is an unspoken wisdom and intelligence in this medicine and know that this process will go exactly as it should.

Surrender. Surrender is humbling and transformative. Throughout your retreat, you’ll come across opportunities to surrender – to the mushrooms, alternative perspectives, to the unknown. The more that you’re able to let go, the more that the experience will be able to take you to where you’re meant to go.

Day 1. You’ll arrive at the Montego Bay airport and be driven down to Treasure Beach. The first night is your chance to get to know everyone, eat, relax and get some needed rest.

Day 2. The following day is the first dosing session. After a light breakfast, we’ll start group preparations to get each guest ready for the day’s session. The session begins in the early afternoon and is followed with dinner and rest.

Day 3. The following day is a non-dose day where you’ll eat breakfast and join a group integration session. The rest of the day is open for relaxation and reflection. Lunch is ordered from local restaurants on non-dose days, followed by the nightly dinner.

Day 4-7. The rest of the week is spent alternating between dose days and none-dose days. Our facilitators and therapists are present each and every day to help you process your experiences in an ongoing process of integration.

Day 8. After breakfast, your airport transfer will take you back to Montego Bay airport for your departure flight.

Participation in the group discussions is an essential part of establishing a strong support network and understanding your own psilocybin experiences. Therefore, all guests are expected to join the discussions. Of course, you can participate to your level of comfort, but a large part of what makes our retreats so profound is the connection that people find in their retreat group. Everyone shows up to MycoMeditations ready to dive into their pains and struggles, and in that process, guests have a lot of vulnerable conversations, both in groups and in private.

By the end of the retreat, many people feel as though their fellow retreat goers know more about them than many of those closest in their life. The group is a powerful container, and a significant piece of the healing process here.

About COVID-19 Protocols

At present, all travelers entering Jamaica must present a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival.  The protocols change quite often, but current testing requirements allow for either PCR or antigen tests, which must be done within 72 hours before arrival in Jamaica.  You will need to print your negative test results to show the airlines at check in. If you have any questions about what’s required, we’re more than happy to help.

Anyone returning to the United States must also receive a test before leaving Jamaica. MycoMeditations will schedule COVID-19 tests for anyone who needs one and arrange transportation to and from the test site.  The test our guests take in Jamaica is a rapid antigen test and is compliant with current CDC regulations.

Please check the returning rules for travel in your country of residence and this can easily be arranged for you as well if needed. You will receive instructions for this upon booking.

As of August 2021, there are no exemptions to the above testing requirements for people who are fully vaccinated.

All travelers into Jamaica must apply for a travel authorization through the Jamaica Tourist Board.  The travel authorization is a simple online form stating your flight information, passport information, travel dates, and the place you’ll be staying.  Once approved, you will receive an email with your travel authorization documents attached. You will need to print these documents to show the airlines at check in. You will receive instructions for this upon booking.

Our COVID-19 protocols are created with consideration of current guidelines set by the CDC, WHO, and local factors.

As the majority of our guests and staff are now vaccinated, we’ve been able to relax our mask and distancing guidelines.  Masks are not required during most parts of your retreat, including dosing, integration and meals which take place outside. You will be asked to wear a mask when traveling in a vehicle or entering a restaurant or store.

Please note that COVID-19 protocols are constantly changing, and the specific guidelines might change by the time of your retreat.

Before COVID-19, we offered a “shared room” occupancy type that allowed guests to stay in a shared room with another guest.  As a result of  Jamaica Tourist Board’s COVID-19 Health and Safety protocols, we no longer offer this, but hope to offer this as an option again soon.

You may still join us with somebody that you live with and plan to share a bed with.

Please feel free to get in touch with us if you have any questions or concerns