Our aim is to encourage wider public understanding of the benefits and responsible use of psychedelic substances in our local community and beyond.
“If we recognize the power of entheogenic substances to open us to the universal truth and full dimension of human experience, and if we accept the role of the shaman as hierophant and psychopomp into this realm, as enacted for example by the Huichol mara’akame, we have to conclude that today in Western society we are deprived of two key resources for complete human growth. Young people, in their hunger for meaning, will still gravitate toward entheogens. The more experienced among us may try to ease their journey, but in the absence of qualified guides not all will benefit from their experience.”
― Rick Doblin, Manifesting Minds: A Review of Psychedelics in Science, Medicine, Sex, and Spirituality
We were originally founded in 2016 by Dylan and Maria Broderick as the Psychedelic Society of Brighton.
The Society was then affiliated to the UK Psychedelic Society and a launch event welcomed an audience of over 250 to hear talks from Ben Sessa, Rita Kocarova, Stephen Reid and Anna Waldstein. A few months later the UK Psychedelic Society became a commercially run organisation, while we valued being non-profit, and as such became independent. This new situation saw us focus on smaller free or donation-only events.
The Book Group became a main focus for the Society and ran regularly from mid 2017 to late 2018, featuring local writers like Matthew Clark, John Higgs and David Bramwell, as well as reading classics of the genre from the likes of Aldous Huxley, Terence McKenna, John C Lilly, Andy Letcher, William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg.
At the beginning of 2019 we decided to focus on therapeutic aspects of psychedelics, and formed the Brighton Psychedelic Integration Circle. Dylan was joined by fellow facilitators Graham Campbell, Maria Papaspyrou, Greg Donaldson, Renee Harvey, and Martin Lunn. The group met monthly on Sundays in the Loft at Little Dippers, with attendance of up to 18 participants.
We re-named ourselves Brighton Psychedelics and under this umbrella ran several events at the University of Sussex, notably film screenings and talks featuring speakers like Matthew Johnson of Johns Hopkins and Anil Seth of the Sackler Centre for Consciousness Studies.
We paused activities during most of 2020 and after a few socially distanced sessions of the Integration Circle, moved online at the start of 2021. Renee and Maria had by now left the Circle as facilitators and we had been joined by Tom Shutte, Jocelyn Rose and Rebeca Bandeira.
Renewed enthusiasm among the team means that we are looking to restart events once more. These can be found on the events section of the website.