Education/Research

Modern Spirit is focused on demonstrating the value of spiritual healing in modern healthcare. Drawing from scientific research, clinical experience, and spiritual practice, Modern Spirit works to provide integrative educational programs to the community and healthcare providers. We are currently developing educational content for our members. In addition to our blog, we will be presenting live events, webinars and podcasts for the community.

Modern Spirit is also developing professional education programs for healthcare providers. We are currently seeking accreditation and designing curriculum for Continuing Education programs for doctors, nurses, psychologists and other healthcare professionals.

Learn more about our Educational Advisory Board.

Modern Spirit is also collaborating on novel medical research. In 2018 we are initiating the Modern Spirit Epigenetics Project.

Last year’s “Modern Spirit Journey to Nihue Rao Centro Espiritual,” has led to further collaboration with Dr. David Rabin MD PhD and Dr. Ben Kelmendi MD and their respective institiutions. We are exploring the frontier between modern biochemistry and shamanic healing.

Dr. Rabin is a psychiatry resident physician and neuroscientist at Western Psychiatric Institute & Clinic at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Dr. Kelmendi is a psychiatry resident physician and neuroscientist at Neuroscience Research Training Program (NRTP) at the Yale School of Medicine.

Modern Spirit Epigenetics Project

Epigenetics is the study of how biological changes can be caused by changing the way genes are expressed without changing the genetic code itself. Epigenetic changes involve alterations in biological "software," reprogramming of the biochemical machinery that surrounds the DNA, without altering its "hardware" blueprint.

Alterations in epigenetics are now known to contribute to a number of mental health problems, including anxiety, depression, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD); and are also involved in response to treatment.

Epigenetics respond to many influences including nutrition and a wide range of pharmaceutical agents, and, interestingly enough, are also sensitive to emotional states, interpersonal relationships, psychotherapy and altered states of consciousness. Investigating epigenetic changes associated with the successful treatment of mental health problems will help us to understand the biological effects of deep emotional healing.

Modern Spirit has now initiated the MS Epigenetics Project. This research project will be based at USC (University of Southern California) Department of Psychiatry, coordinated by psychiatrist and neuroscientist Dr. Rael Cahn, MD PhD. This project will focus on therapeutic approaches which incorporate expanded states of consciousness, first with MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy in the U.S., and then eventually will examine traditional ayahuasca and plant shamanism in Peru. The first phase of this project will be done in collaboration with the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (maps.org).

Saliva samples will be collected before, during and after MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as part of ongoing PTSD research. These samples will be evaluated to assess epigenetics changes related to clinical outcomes and personal healing experiences. In the future, similar research will be conducted with traditional ayahuasca shamanic healing.

Thanks to the generosity of private individuals, Modern Spirit has now been able to initiate this project and we plan to begin collecting samples in the near future. Subsequent lab work will be costly, and we are now working to raise another $80,000 to complete this research.

Please consider donating to Modern Spirit to support this research project.