N,N-DMT and 5-MeO-DMT are extremely potent and short-acting entheogens found naturally in the plant and animal kingdoms. For thousands of years, N,N-DMT has been an essential ingredient in ayahuasca, an Amazonian brew administered by shamans made of plant-sourced DMT and MAOIs. On the other hand, 5-MeO-DMT is a chemical relative of DMT found in the South American psychedelic snuff called yopo and produced in the venomous secretions of the Colorado River toad.
Besides a profound spiritual reorientation, the transformational experiences occasioned by these compounds have the capacity to deeply heal disorders of the mind and body and connect us with realms unimaginable to everyday consciousness. This article is intended to be a comprehensive DMT resource for those seeking more information in the form of articles, studies, books, documentaries, and videos. In addition, we will explore some recommended DMT retreats, and why and how to find integration therapists after the experience.
Table of contents
Reality Sandwich Articles on DMT
Below is a list of articles on N,N-DMT, 5-MeO-DMT, ayahuasca, and changa published in Reality Sandwich since 2008:
- DMT Substance Guide: Effects, Common Uses, Safety
- Microdosing DMT & Common Dosages Explained
- How DMT is Made: Everything You Need to Know
- How to Smoke DMT: Processes Explained
- How to Use DMT Vape Pens
- The Mystery of Out of Body, Near Death, and DMT Experiences
- DMT Research from 1956 to the Edge of Time
- The Use of DMT in Early Masonic Ritual
- DMT and the Bible: An Interview with Rick Strassman
- DMT, the Prophetic Experience, and the Hebrew Bible
- Guide to Machine Elves and Other DMT Entities
- Beyond the Machine Elves: On DMT Culture, Visionary Plants and Entheodelic Storytelling
- Rat Brains Show a “Mystical” Compound
- Novel Products to Simply In-Clinic DMT Administration
- Voyaging to DMT Space with Dr. Rick Strassman, M.D.
- Terence McKenna: About His Life, Impact, and Death
- The Mystery of DMT: A Talk with Graham St John
- Terence on DMT: An Entheological Analysis of Mckenna’s Experiences in the Tryptamine Mirror of the Self
- DMT and the Mainstreaming of Psychedelics | Rick Strassman MD ~ ATTMind Ep. 65
- Voyaging to DMT Space with Dr. Rick Strassman, M.D.
- The Sprig of Acacia: An Emblem of Our Faith in the Immortality of the Soul
- 5-MeO-DMT Guide: Effects, Benefits, Safety, and Legality
- Colorado River Toad Guide: Effects, Common Uses, Safety
- Bufo Toad Takes You to a Whole New World
- A Look at 5MEO: Are Some Doors Better Left Unopened?
- Romancing the Toad
- The God Molecule: Excerpt from the Book
- The Otac Experience: Fusing Reality and Fantasy
- The Toad and the Jaguar [Expanding Mind]
Ayahuasca and Changa Articles
- Ayahuasca Guide: Effects, Common Uses, Safety
- Microdosing Ayahuasca: Common Dosage Explained
- Complete Changa Guide: Overview, Preparation, How to Smoke
- Journey with Changa
- Ayahuasca Retreats 101: Everything You Need to Know About Retreat Centers
- Ayahuasca Benefits: Clinical Improvements for Six Months
- Ayahuasca Makes Neuron Babies in Your Brain
- Ayahuasca Helps with Grief
- Brainwaves on Ayahuasca: A Waking Dream State
- Consideration of Ayahuasca for the Treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Beating Addiction with DMT
- Is Ayahuasca Healing a Self-Delusion?
- Amazonian Perspectives on Invisible Entities
- 20 Essential Books on the Mysterious Power of Ayahuasca
- Excerpt from Ayahuasca Shamanism in the Amazon and Beyond
- The Ayahuasca Experience
- The Sociology of Ayahuasca Healing
- Ayahuasca: An Ethnopharmacologic History
- Ayahuasca and Kabbalah
- Welcome to the Jungle: A Talk with Rak Razam
- Ayahuasca and the Global Marketplace
- Trippy Talk: Meet Ayahuasca with Sitaramaya Sita and Plant Teachers
- The Ayahuasca Sessions: An Interview with Ron Wheelock
- Ishvara and Ayahuasca: Linking with the Divine Within
- The Healing Wisdom of the Serpent
- The Way of Light: A Healing Journey with Ayahuasca
- The Agonizing Enlightenment of Ayahausca
- The All-Star Shaman Ayahuasca Massacree
- Music is Medicine: Ben Lee, Ayahuasca and the Gnostic Pop Movement
- Ayahuasca and the Godhead: An Interview with Wahid Azal of the Fatimiya Sufi Order
- Lizard Wisdom: A Review of The Ayahuasca Sessions by Rak Razam
Clinical Trials and Studies
For millennia, indigenous shamans in the Amazon basin have successfully used ayahuasca for deeply healing spiritual, emotional, and physical issues. In the West, the exploding interest in psychedelic research has led multiple research groups and partnering institutions to validate and quantify this ancient knowledge with controlled settings and dosages for mental health disorders such as depression and addiction.
Imperial College London (ICL)
Home to the Centre for Psychedelic Research headed by psychedelic researcher Dr Robin Carhart-Harris, Imperial College London has been at the forefront of modern psychedelic research. The center’s clinical research focuses on the therapeutic potential of psychedelics like DMT and psilocybin for major depression.
ICL Depression Trial (Active)
- ICL Depression Study: In collaboration with the neuropharmaceutical company Small Pharma, Imperial College London researchers are conducting the world’s first clinical trial for DMT this year. The first phase of the trial is planned to start this month, with the initial aim of evaluating the effects of DMT-assisted therapy in healthy volunteers. The subsequent Phase IIa trial will evaluate the efficacy of the treatment in patients with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD).
University Hospital of Basel
University Hospital of Basel in Basel, Switzerland, is home to the Liechti lab, a leading psychedelic research group that investigates the effects and pharmacological action of LSD and other psychedelics.
University Hospital of Basel Clinical Trial (Active)
- Effects of Dimethyltryptamine in Healthy Subjects (DMT): Researchers in the Liechti Lab at University Hospital of Basel are collaborating with the psychedelic biotech company MindMed to evaluate the effects of different DMT dosing regimens in 30 healthy participants. This Phase I clinical trial was announced in June of 2020 and expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2020.
University of Victoria
Research from 2013 led by Dr. Gerald Thomas at the University of Victoria, Canada, investigated how ayahuasca therapy can lead to long-term improvements in addiction outcomes. This research has set the stage for further research to investigate ayahuasca-assisted therapy for addiction treatment, and to confirm their promising findings.
University of Victoria Ayahuasca Study
- Ayahuasca-Assisted Therapy for Addiction: Results from a Preliminary Observational Study in Canada: Co-funded by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), this observational study examined the safety and efficacy of ayahuasca for treating addiction and dependence. Six months after the five-day ayahuasca retreat, the researchers found that the 12 participants sustained significant improvements in life meaning, empowerment, mindfulness, and hopefulness, as well as reductions in drug and alcohol use.
University of New Mexico (UNM)
From 1990 to 1995, Dr. Rick Strassman conducted groundbreaking clinical research on DMT at the University of New Mexico. After a decades-long hiatus from psychedelic research nationwide, Dr. Strassman revived these studies by intravenously administering 400 doses of N,N-DMT to 60 volunteers and documenting the experiences and therapeutic potential of the sessions. The results from these studies cumulated into a book entitled DMT: The Spirit Molecule.
The following studies led by Rick Strassman examined the dose-response characteristics, tolerance effects, and pharmacological action of DMT during his five years conducting human research with DMT:
- Dose-Response Study of N,N-Dimethyltryptamine in Humans (1994)
- Human Psychopharmacology of N,N-dimethyltryptamine (1995)
- Differential tolerance to biological and subjective effects of four closely spaced doses of N,N-dimethyltryptamine in humans (1996)
Johns Hopkins University (JHU)
Established in 2019, JHU’s Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research is dedicated to understanding how psychedelics affect behavior, mood, cognition, brain function, and outcomes for disorders like depression, PTSD, and substance use disorder.
JHU Studies on 5-MeO-DMT
5-methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine (5-MeO-DMT) used in a naturalistic group setting is associated with unintended improvements in depression and anxiety: This naturalistic observation study found that up to 80% of the 362 survey respondents reported significant improvements in depression and anxiety following the use of 5-MeO-DMT. The biggest improvements in depression and anxiety were most correlated with experiences rated as intensely mystical, spiritual, and meaningful. This study was completed under the direction of Dr. Roland Griffiths, a psilocybin research pioneer and Founding Director of the Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research at Johns Hopkins University.
The following recommended books on N,N-DMT, ayahuasca, and 5-MeO-DMT explore the science and history of these medicines, personal accounts and interpretations of the experiences, and their therapeutic potential.
Books on DMT and Ayahuasca
- How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence by Michael Pollan
- DMT: The Spirit Molecule: A Doctor’s Revolutionary Research Into the Biology of Near-Death and Mystical Experiences by Rick Strassman
- DMT and the Soul of Prophecy: A New Science of Spiritual Revelation in the Hebrew Bible by Rick Strassman
- Inner Paths to Outer Space: Journeys to Alien Worlds through Psychedelics and Other Spiritual Technologies by Rick Strassman
- The Archaic Revival: Speculations on Psychedelic Mushrooms, the Amazon, Virtual Reality, UFOs, Evolution, Shamanism, the Rebirth of the Goddess, and the End of History by Terence McKenna
- True Hallucinations by Terence McKenna
- Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge by Terence McKenna
- DMT Dialogues: Encounters with the Spirit Molecule by David Luke
- Alien Information Theory: Psychedelic Drug Technologies and the Cosmic Game by Andrew R. Gallimore
- Mystery School in Hyperspace: A Cultural History of DMT by Graham St. John
- The Antipodes of the Mind: Charting the Phenomenology of the Ayahuasca Experience by Benny Shanon
- Ayahuasca in My Blood by Peter Gorman
- The Ayahuasca Experience: A Sourcebook on the Sacred Vine of Spirits by Ralph Metzner
- The Fellowship of the River: A Medical Doctor’s Exploration into Traditional Amazonian Plant Medicine by Joseph Tafur
- The Ayahuasca Sessions: Conversations with Amazonian Curanderos and Western Shamans by Rak Razam
- The Shaman and Ayahuasca: Journeys to Sacred Realms by Don José Campos
- Listening to Ayahuasca: New Hope for Depression, Addiction, PTSD, and Anxiety by Rachel Harris
- Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the Origins of Knowledge by Jeremy Narby
- DMT & My Occult Mind—LITE: Investigation of Occult Realities Using the Spirit Molecule by Dick Khan
- Supernatural: Meetings with the Ancient Teachers of Mankind by Graham Hancock
Books on 5-MeO-DMT
- Tryptamine Palace: 5-MeO-DMT and the Sonoran Desert Toad by James Oroc
- The Toad and the Jaguar a Field Report of Underground Research on a Visionary Medicine: Bufo Alvarius and 5-Methoxy-Dimethyltryptamine by Ralph Metzner
- Entheogenic Liberation: Unraveling the Enigma of Nonduality with 5-MeO-DMT Energetic Therapy by Martin W. Ball
- The God Molecule: 5-MeO-DMT and the Spiritual Path to the Divine Light by Gerardo Rubén sandoval Isaac, MD
- The Toad of Dawn: 5-MeO-DMT and the Rising of Cosmic Consciousness by Dr. Octavio Rettig Hinojosa
Documentaries and Videos
- DMT: The Spirit Molecule—A 2010 documentary exploring Dr. Rick Strassman’s research on DMT at the University of New Mexico in the 1990s.
- DMT: A Religious Model with Rick Strassman, M.D.—A 2015 talk given by Dr. Rick Strassman at the National Psychedelic Symposium at CU Boulder introducing a theistic model of the DMT experience.
- DMT: A Lost History—A 2015 documentary exploring the use of DMT-containing plants throughout the ancient world.
- Terence McKenna—Everything You Need to Know About DMT—Terence McKenna describing DMT and his experiences in hyperspace with machine elves.
- Neurons to Nirvana—A 2013 documentary film by Canadian filmmaker Oliver Hockenhull that traces the history and therapeutic potential of five psychedelics, including DMT.
- Aya: Awakenings—A 2013 documentary on ayahuasca and Amazonian shamanism adapted from Rak Razam’s book, Aya: A Shamanic Odyssey.
- From Shock to Awe—This 2018 documentary by Luc Côté and Janine Sagert follows the healing journey of two combat veterans suffering from PTSD. Finding pharmaceuticals ineffective, they turn to entheogens like ayahuasca for deeper healing.
- Ayahuasca—A documentary by Aubrey Marcus and Mitch Schultz that follows the insights and experiences of several participants within a Peruvian ayahuasca ceremony.
- Terence McKenna’s True Hallucinations—A 2016 experimental documentary on Terence McKenna’s adventures and psychedelic experiences in La Chorrera, Panama with his brother Dennis McKenna.
- The Last Shaman—A 2016 Netflix movie that documents a clinically-depressed young man’s journey into the Amazon, where he encounters the deep healing properties of ayahuasca.
- Icaros: A Vision—A 2016 documentary about a young woman’s journey to the Amazon, where she embarks on her spiritual journey to release her existential fears with the help of ayahuasca and a young Amazonian shaman.
- Ayahuasca: Vine of the Soul—A documentary by Richard Meech that follows a naturopathic doctor and an accountant to the Amazon, where they encounter the transformative powers of ayahuasca.
- Shamans of the Amazon—A Timeless Journey—A 2016 documentary by Dean Jefferys exploring Amazonian shamanism, ayahuasca rituals, and indigenous spirituality.
- Stepping into the Fire—A 2011 film directed by Roberto Velez and Ross Evison exploring the transformation of a wealthy man plagued by materialism and an unfulfilling life who journeys to Peru for self-discovery and healing.
- Metamorphosis—A 2009 documentary by Keith Aronowitz that follows the experiences, emotions, and insights of five Westerners during an ayahuasca ceremony in the Amazon.
- Other Worlds—A 2004 documentary by French filmmaker Jan Kounen that gives a close and raw look at ayahuasca rituals in the Peruvian Amazon.
- Ayahuasca—visions of jungle medicine: Adam Oliver Brown at at TEDxUOttawa.
- Wizards of DMT—Season 2, Episode 4 of the docuseries Hamilton’s Pharmacopeia. The episode follows Hamilton Morris’s journey across North America, as he discovers why and how DMT is present in the laboratory and naturally in the environment.
- Inside a Home DMT Lab Run by A Chemistry Teacher | High Society—Vice explores how DMT is made at the home of an anonymous chemistry teacher named “Bob.”
- The Psychedelic Toad—Season 2, Episode 1 of Hamilton’s Pharmacopeia. Hamilton Morris embarks on a quest to understand the history and experience of the psychedelic Colorado River toad’s venom.
- Synthetic Toad Venom Machine—Season 3, Episode 1 of Hamilton’s Pharmacopeia. This is a continuation of Season 2, Episode 1, where Hamilton Morris identifies errors in his initial reporting and identifies the origins of Colorado River toad venom smoking.
Retreats and Integration Therapists
Ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT retreats have become increasingly popular in recent years as knowledge has spread around the world about the deep healing potential offered by these medicines. Accordingly, a wide variety of DMT retreats have come into being to meet the demand, each of which may differ in its pre-screening requirements, accommodations, services, and ceremonies.
As Western modalities have melded with Indigenous knowledge, many retreat centers successfully synthesize psychotherapeutic modalities with Indigenous approaches to the plant medicine. This has created an ideal environment for treating addiction, PTSD, and other disorders of the mind and spirit.
- Arkana Spiritual Center in Iquitos, Peru
- The Healing Tree Center in Cusco, Peru
- Dreamglade in Iquitos, Peru
- Spirit Vine Ayahuasca Retreat Center in Itacaré, Brazil
- Nada Brahma Healing Center in Alajuela, Costa Rica
- Gaia Sagrada in Cuenca, Ecuador
The intensity and profundity of DMT experiences ventures about as far as the human consciousness can go from the ordinary experience of consensus reality and the self. While some people may find the DMT experience seamlessly integrates into their day-to-day lives, others experience post-trip challenges such as restlessness, difficulty sleeping, trip reactivations, and more. Integration therapists can help one stay grounded after the experience and unpack what was revealed for maximal clarity, insight, and meaning. Explore these resources for post-DMT integration help:
- MAPS Psychedelic Integration List—A comprehensive list of international and US-based psychedelic integration therapists.
- Psychedelic Support Network—A list curated by Psychedelic Support of credentialed integration therapists offering services, such as pre- and post-ritual counseling and individual and group psychedelic integration.
CONTRIBUTING RS AUTHOR: DYLAN BEARD
Dylan is a freelance science writer and editor based in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. After finishing his physics degree and dabbling in neuroscience research at UC Santa Barbara in 2017, he returned to his first love—writing. As a long-term fan of the human brain, he loves exploring the latest research on psychedelics, nootropics, psychology, consciousness, meditation, and more. When he’s not writing, you can probably find him on hiking trails around Oregon and Washington or listening to podcasts. Feel free to follow him on Insta @dylancb88.