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An exploration of the relationship between psychedelic drug use, mystical experiences, mindfulness, and mental health

Azmoodeh, Kiana; (2020) An exploration of the relationship between psychedelic drug use, mystical experiences, mindfulness, and mental health. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Research into psychedelic drugs and their therapeutic potential has gained increasing attention in recent years, however an understanding of the psychological mechanisms by which these substances exert their influence is not yet fully established. The purpose of this thesis was to better understand the relationship between psychedelic drug use and the psychotherapeutic constructs implicated in explaining their proposed benefits. This volume is comprised of three parts. Part One presents a review of relevant literature, pertaining to the question of which psychotherapeutic constructs may be relevant to psychedelic experiences and their effects. The relevance of constructs such as ‘mindfulness’ and ‘psychological flexibility’ are considered, as well as the role of psychedelic-induced ‘mystical experiences’. Part Two of the thesis describes an exploratory cross-sectional study, gathering data from a large sample of recreational psychedelic drug users using an internet-based survey. This study explored the association between lifetime psychedelic drug use, mystical experiences, mindfulness and depression, and examined the pathways between demonstrated effects. Finally, a critical appraisal of the process of conducting the research is provided. This includes personal reflections on the undertaking of research within the subject area of psychedelics, as well as a consideration of the process of establishing a direction for the study from a psychological position.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: An exploration of the relationship between psychedelic drug use, mystical experiences, mindfulness, and mental health
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2020. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10112988
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