Katherine MacLean, PhD is a Research Scientist with expertise in studying the effects of mindfulness meditation and psychedelics on cognitive performance, emotional well-being, spirituality, and brain function. As a postdoctoral research fellow and faculty member at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, she conducted clinical trials of psilocybin, the primary chemical found in “magic mushrooms”, and other psychedelic compounds. Her groundbreaking research on psilocybin and personality change suggests that psychedelic medicines can enhance openness to new experiences and promote mental health and emotional well-being throughout the lifespan. Dr. MacLean is a co-founder of the Psychedelic Education and Continuing Care Program in New York, where she has led training workshops and educational seminars focused on increasing awareness and reducing risks of psychedelic use. She is also a Zendo Project volunteer (psychedelic harm reduction at festivals) and a co-investigator on the MAPS-sponsored clinical trial of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD.
How I work with clients
My teaching and integration approach combines over a decade of training in rigorous academic and clinical research with practical intuition guided by personal experiences, including five silent meditation retreats, a 2-month pilgrimage in the Himalayan mountain range in Nepal, my 29-year old sister’s death journey through metastatic breast cancer, and natural homebirth. During my professional and personal life experiences, I have developed a unique set of skills that allow me to feel safe, and help others feel safe, in extremely unusual environments and powerful states of consciousness. I believe in the power of the body and mind to courageously create healing and transformative relationships with self, community and nature.
I specialize in harm reduction for psychedelic use, embodied mindfulness practices for integration, and science-based trainings for clinicians. During my four years at Johns Hopkins, I apprenticed with and was supervised by two of the world’s top psychedelic therapists, Bill Richards, PhD and Mary Cosimano, LSW, learning how to effectively and safely support people before, during, and after psychedelic experiences.
I have taught large workshops (100-200 people), medium-sized integration circles (20-40 people), and small-group intensives on psychedelic harm reduction and integration. I also consult with individuals who are interested to learn more about psychedelic integration, spiritual or mystical experiences, and unanticipated or difficult meditation experiences that may or may not be related to psychedelic use. Please note that I am not a counselor, licensed therapist or medical doctor, and thus cannot provide psychological counseling, therapy or medical advice.