Reporter launches 'psychedelic journalism' site

Riverfront Times

Journalist Amber Lyon's latest project focuses on journalism about psychedelic drugs., "a news website devoted to psychedelic journalism," launches next month, Ray Downs reported in the Riverfront Times on Monday. According to's Tumblr, it's "an independent journalism site covering psychedelics, natural medicines, and alternative therapies."

The site, Downs writes, "aims to be a resource for people interested in learning more about psychedelics like ayahuasca and psilocybin mushrooms as treatments for a wide range of mental and physical ailments."

"For me, I was out in the field for 10 years covering violence, fighting, slavery, drug abuse, the underbelly of society," Lyon tells Daily RFT. "I saw the worst of the worst in my career and I was kind of absorbing the pain of others. I started to have problems sleeping, problems with short-term memory, it got so bad that I couldn't write and I'm a writer, so that's when I knew something was wrong."

But taking pharmaceutical drugs was out of the question because she had seen too much of the negative effects while reporting on those stories.

In March, Lyon spoke with Joe Rogan on his podcast about her experience taking ayahuasca at a retreat in Peru. She told Rogan about learning to change how she thought about drugs.

"I associated all drugs as being evil and just bad for you and naughty," she told Rogan. "So now I just have to completely retrain my thought system because I've had 30 years of this propaganda..."

Downs writes that Lyon sees the new site as both activism and responsible journalism.

Through original work, aggregation, and links to scientific studies done on psychedelics, Lyon hopes will be a resource for information on the medicinal aspects of substances that are beginning to get a little more respect these days. As medical marijuana has become accepted by more Americans as a healthier alternative to pharmaceuticals to treat some ailments, so has a more open-minded approach to other substances more often associated with tripping than healing.

The new site is looking for stories.

Lyon is also the author of "Peace, Love and Pepper Spray," a book about protest movements.


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