Insight Conference
Paul Liknaitzky, Ph.D.
11:00am - 11:30am


A Double-Edged Sword? Potential Risks Associated with Key Benefits of Psychedelic Treatments

Drawing from a large body of evidence across both first and second waves of psychedelic psychiatry, this talk will outline a number of benefits of psychedelic treatment, argue for a set of possible risks associated with each benefit, and describe a large controlled clinical trial wherein the speaker is currently exploring these issues. Among others, these benefits (and risks) include: the veridicality of psychedelic experience and its enduring authority over time (and the risk of delusion proneness); the propensity for new perspectives and flexible thinking (and the risk of conspiratorial and non-critical thinking); the ability to access repressed memories (and the risk of false memories); enhanced prosocial attitudes (and the risk of increased partisan or tribal positions); increased environmentalism (and the risk of anxious fatalism); and connection to a higher power or purpose (and the risk of ‘spiritual bypassing’). The speaker will also suggest clinical methods to mitigate these possible risks. 


Research Fellow and Principal Investigator

Paul Liknaitzky, Ph.D.

Turner Institute (School of Psychological Sciences) and Dept of Psychiatry (School of Clinical Sciences), Monash University
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