Does your plant integration specialist follow any ethical guidelines? Current research suggests that integration work is essential for those who turn to plant medicine for healing. But who are these integration specialists who step up to support people doing this deep work. What training or experience to they have and what ethical guidelines do they follow?
Recently I came across a list of basic ethical practices and approaches proposed by the International Association for the Study of Dreams. These guidelines apply to those who look support integration of experiences of alternate states of consciousness infused by plant medicine. The dreamwork ethics apply well to plant integration work because the altered states of consciousness elicited by plant medicine are very similar to the altered states of conciousness we experience every night in the form of dreams.
Below is a set of the guidelines appropriate for integration process. It is based on the IASD guidelines for dream work available on their website www.asddreams.org
Integration work and sharing of the experiences of altered states of consciousness respects the person’s dignity and integrity, and recognizes the person as the decision maker capable of understanding and making meaning of their own experiences. Ethical integration from a therapeutic perspective helps the person who seeks integration to work with her/his own visions, images, feelings, and associations, and guides the person to more fully experience, appreciate, and understand their experience.
Every experience may have multiple meanings, and different techniques may be reasonably employed to touch these multiple layers of significance.
A person’s decision to share or discontinue sharing their experience should always be respected and honoured.
Before beginning integration work there needs to be a discussion about a possibility of unexpected issues or emotions that may arise in the course of integration work.
Information and mutual agreement about the degree of privacy and confidentiality are essential ingredients in creating a safe atmosphere for integration work.
Practitioner should provide the person seeking integration with an informed consent to make sure that they fully understand and agree to the practice offered by the practitioner.
Confidentiality and limits to confidentiality need to be clearly stated.