Can Ibogaine Help With Pedophilia?

Do you know anything about using ibogaine to help with the addiction of porn and the compulsion of desires towards children? I’ve dealt with this before, and my compulsion is much lighter, but I’m trying to help a young friend who’s suicidal as he’s dealing with this same issue.

Let me start by saying that I do believe there are times when the body and mind can be positively helped through strategically chosen substances. So I am not “anti-drug” across the board. However, I am absolutely against the use of certain kinds of drugs due to the way they interact with the body. Any drug which causes hallucinations is bad news in my opinion and should be avoided. Ibogaine falls into this category. While I am certainly not an expert in biochemistry, I am adamantly opposed to drugs which interfere with the body’s ability to collect accurate sensory data (sights, sounds, smells, etc.). Down through the ages hallucinogens and psychodelics have been a great fascination to humans, and they have completely misinterpreted the effects they experienced. Drug-induced hallucinations have nothing to do with gaining spiritual insights. All of the “weird and wonderful” things people experience during a drug “trip” are actually evidence that their physical brains are severely malfunctioning. The “amazing insights” people glean from their trips are nothing more than their souls completely misinterpreting what is happening to their partner bodies. Unlike the subconscious, human souls lack the depth of understanding needed to recognize when the body is in a severe crisis, which is why they don’t know better than to celebrate when the body is crying out for help. It’s a very disturbing and tragic situation, and certainly not one that you want to intentionally inflict on yourself, no matter how much malarkey you hear about how hallucinogens can “enhance understanding” and “open doors”. The body’s physical brain is an extremely intricate and delicate organ. Throwing the wrong drugs at it is like installing a nasty bit of malware on your device: you run the risk of permanent damage being done even if you manage to clear the malware off.

Whenever you are considering a drug, I always recommend gaining a balanced view, and that means hearing what the drug’s fans and anti-fans have to say. There are many great websites available today which focus on giving you straight facts about the ways various drugs effect the body. Because most “recreational” drugs are bad news for the body, these facts are often rather grim. But hiding out from them certainly won’t get you anywhere. You should always make an informed choice.

Regarding ibogaine, here is a summary from a drug fact website:

The drug is both hallucinogenic, a stimulant and a depressant. It causes visual hallucinations in high doses as well as a feeling of lightness, dryness of the mouth, sweating, dilation of the eye’s pupils, increased pulse rate and fine tremors. The peak effect is reached at about 2 hours after swallowing the drug.

Users describe a deep dreamy trance-like state that reportedly lives with them for long periods after use. Some users report a loss of desire for drugs like heroin and cocaine in this period. It was this effect that led to tests on its use as a ‘chemical dependence interrupter’. Research into its effects indicates that the drug can help with withdrawal symptoms, stopping them in some cases, and is in itself relatively non-addictive. Studies have shown the drug can bringing on periods of abstention for up 6 months in a quarter to a half of those given the drug – with repeated doses often extending abstention in roughly half again.

The effects of this drug make it clear that it massively interferes with the body’s ability to function normally. If you have any respect for the body’s ability to function, you should not think it’s a good thing to force the body into any kind of trance–especially one that drags on and on. Trances are a result of interfering with the body’s ability to accurately monitor your surroundings. Your body is equipped with a whole array of amazing environmental monitors. It is able to constantly scan for sights, sounds, textures, and smells. It performs these functions constantly while you are awake–far more often than you are consciously aware of. Some of the most important data your body collects is stuff that you weren’t trying to collect–like when you detect a burning smell in the air and realize you left a stove burner on in the kitchen. To induce a trance, the body’s highly tuned senses must be intentionally interfered with–either crippled in some way so that they can only detect a fraction of what they usually do, or scrambled so that they become confused and start feeding false information to the subconscious. Neither option is good, and both can end up doing permanent damage to the body’s senses. The extremely arrogant theory that we can knock the body offline anytime we want and always fully restore it’s operations is a dangerous deception. Bodies are incredibly adaptable, but they also have limits, and a drug that is toxic enough to take some of the body’s core functions offline is quite capable of doing permanent damage. So again, I personally loathe hallucinogens and I find it quite appalling how much they are exalted in human cultures. But this is what happens when we don’t put effort into properly understanding and respecting the human design.

Now let’s talk about this idea of using ibogaine to help break addictions to other drugs, such as heroine. When we first slam the body with a chemical sledgehammer, and then say “Look, it stopped craving another whack for 6 months,” I’d suggest that we’re not making the progress we think we are. To properly interpret an absence of cravings, we need to think about how we got there. If I drink coffee before a meal, for example, I will lose my appetite to eat anything. It’s not that my body doesn’t need a fresh batch of nutrients, it’s that the caffeine in the coffee is revving my body to the point that it feels it has to put other priorities on hold while it processes the drug out of my system. If I keep throwing drugs at my body whenever it is trying to bring in more nutrients, my physical health will rapidly deteriorate. It doesn’t matter how peppy I feel under the influence of caffeine–I’m still doing serious damage internally by keeping my body in a constant state of crisis.

Because modern scientists refuse to acknowledge the subconscious as the separate, intelligent, and highly influential element that it is, they see drug addictions as originating with the body. They then think they can solve these addictions simply by manipulating the body with strategically chosen chemicals. The problem with this theory is that something like a heroin addiction doesn’t originate with the body, it originates with the subconscious. Certainly the drug affects the body and creates a whole array of physiological miseries. But the desire to take the drug in the first place comes from the subconscious, as does the overwhelming need to keep taking it whenever personal stress levels spike.

To the subconscious, substance addictions are stress-management tools. The stress being managed is psychological, not physical. Because the substances taken are so harmful to the body, new physical stresses get added to the mix over time. But no matter how much withdrawal hell you put the body through by getting off the drug, you will keep relapsing until you deal with the psychological stress. Understanding which element is driving the addiction is vital to fixing any kind of addiction. To just throw a bunch of drugs at a psychological problem is never going to resolve the core issue. Certainly some drugs can help ease the body’s burden, such as a well-chosen sedative that takes the edge off of the body’s distress over sensing the mind going into a panic. But psychological problems must be dealt with using psychological methods, just as spiritual problems must be dealt with using spiritual methods. Trying to use physical tools to fix non-physical issues simply won’t work.

Suicide Mechanics

Regarding your friend’s suicidal state, realize that there are two kinds of suicide: one that is driven by the soul, and one that is driven by the subconscious (see Understanding Suicide: Help for Those Left Behind). Let’s narrow the focus onto pedophiles here, since that’s the specific issue involved. For pedophiles, soul-driven suicide is caused by an overwhelming sense of self-loathing due to their souls feeling horrified by the contents of the sexual fantasies their partner minds are expressing. If your friend is experiencing this kind of crisis, his reasons for wanting to end his life will be focused on what a scumbag he feels he is.

To help pedophiles who are in this kind of crisis, it is vital to rapidly educate the soul on the logic that the mind is using. The theory that the appalling sexual fantasies are evidence that “I’m just a sick monster” is 100% wrong. The mind’s fixation on children has nothing to do with the pedophile’s moral character or desire/potential to please God. Instead, these obsessions occur as a result of the mind trying to process its distress over certain terrifying life experiences that the pedophile went through in the past. Getting the soul to understand that the mind is not concerned with morality is vital to helping the soul stop trying to use the mental fantasies as a measure of moral character.

Trying to assess your personal moral character by how strongly you are attracted to child porn is like trying to tell how well your refrigerator is stocked by measuring the dimensions of your sofa. These two concepts have nothing to do with each other. The great irony of pedophiles who are grappling with soul-driven suicide is that the evidence of their high moral character is right in front of them, they just aren’t acknowledging it. You simply don’t find it appalling that your mind wants to fantasize about violating kids unless you have very strong moral convictions. The very fact that these souls are genuinely appalled at the concept of sexual assault proves that they care deeply about doing the right thing. The problem in these situations is not a lack of morality, but a lack of understanding and compassion for the legitimate crisis that the mind is in.

If someone drops a chunk of cement on your foot, your distress over that experience isn’t going to resolve in a few minutes.  Are you being a jerk if you don’t instantly “suck it up” and go on as if nothing happened?  No, and to try to put on such a farce would only increase the strain on your system.  The point I’m making is that it is entirely reasonable for the mind to express ongoing, deep distress as a reaction to a severely traumatic experience, and pedophilia is always triggered by severe trauma.   

In cases of soul-driven suicide, the soul not only needs to become educated on why the mind is behaving the way it is, it also needs help with setting reasonable expectations about how fast the mind can recover.  Dealing with the root causes of pedophilia takes time.  Just as your body needs time to stitch up its tissues after you’ve received a deep gash, your mind needs time to adjust the beliefs that are causing it to feel so distressed.  As the healing progresses, the alterations the mind made to the sex drive will diminish until they are completely gone.  Pedophilia is a completely curable problem if root causes are properly addressed.  The alterations made to the sex drive are temporary, not permanent. They only exist as a result of the mind trying to resolve its distress over certain past experiences.  Once the mind feels it has been able to make peace with those experiences, it will automatically stop overriding the sex drive.  It takes effort on the part of the subconscious to keep the sex drive focused in any direction other than its natural default, and the natural default is for you to only feel sexually attracted to your opposite sex peers. The subconscious has limited resources, and it is not interested in wasting them.   Once it no longer feels it is necessary to keep interfering with the sex drive’s basic target profile, the subconscious will reclaim the resources it was using in that area and start spending them elsewhere.  This is why you don’t fix pedophilia by trying to not think of kids. Your mind will turn off your attraction to kids all on its own.  You don’t have to try to force this change, it happens naturally, and it always happens once core stresses get sufficiently resolved. 

Let’s move on to subconscious driven suicide.  Pedophilia is a symptom of intense psychological distress.  Should that distress drag on for too long, the subconscious can become exhausted. Extreme exhaustion can cause the subconscious to feel so despaired and worn out that it wants to simply stop existing, therefore it starts pushing for a full system shutdown. 

For a human to effectively die, the body must be completely shutdown.  Since the subconscious has far more sway over the body than the soul does, subconscious-driven suicide generally indicates a more immediate crisis than soul-driven suicide.  A desperate subconscious can start intentionally trying to sabotage the body’s critical functions to bring on an early death.  The soul, on the other hand, doesn’t have this kind of power over the body.  In cases of subconscious driven suicide, swift action with a focus on lowering the subconscious’ current stress levels is needed.

In cases of pedophilia, the subconscious only reaches this kind of desperate state when it cannot find any practical ways to resolve its distress.  A hostile soul can make the situation a lot more dire by trying to block the subconscious’ efforts to relieve small amounts of stress.  In these cases, a two prong approach is needed.  First, the subconscious needs help to identify practical ways that it can both relieve immediate stress and resolve its core issues in the long-term.  Second, the soul’s current attitude needs to be assessed, and if it is acting hostile, that needs to be adjusted by educating the soul on the correct way to interpret the mind’s behavior.  Again, the problem here is that the soul is accusing the mind of committing moral crimes when in fact the mind is only trying to resolve its distress.

Tactics for Managing Stress

The wording of your question—specifically the fact that you’re looking for tools to reduce the frequency of perverse mental fantasies—indicates that both you and your friend are trying to solve this issue using soul tactics.  In other words, you’re trying to lower your personal stress levels by muzzling the subconscious—finding creative ways to stop it from talking about what it’s trying to talk about. This is a very common tactic among pedophiles but it is the wrong tactic and will actually increase your stress over time, not lower it.

This is one of those issues in which effective solutions seem counterintuitive, so to understand what actually helps the mind in these cases, we need to talk about underlying mechanics.  We also need to debunk some very common misconceptions, one of the most problematic being: the more I let myself think about assaulting kids, the more likely I am to assault them in real life.

Pay close attention to what I’m about to explain, because this is a vital concept to understand in pedophilia.  Your mind needs to talk about its stress in this area.  It is by venting its distress that the mind calms down. 

Think about a time when some other human did something that made you feel intensely angry.  What’s your instinct in such a moment?  To verbally complain about them to someone else.  To talk about what happened to you.  But in these cases, you don’t report the facts objectively.  You don’t calmly state, “I was sitting at my desk and Tom spilled coffee on me.”  Instead, you give an emotional, biased report which tells us less about what actually happened than how you personally felt about what happened. You might say, “I was sitting at my desk minding my own business when that jerk face Tom snuck up behind me and dumped his blazing hot coffee all over me!  He did it on purpose, too!  Why?  Because I was wearing my team jersey and he can’t stand the fact that they let me on the team and not him.  What an immature creep!  If he thinks this is over, he can think again!” Notice how in this speech, you are making assumptions about Tom’s inner motivations for behaving the way he did.  You’re also focusing a lot on how Tom’s actions made you feel.  You’re making associations between today’s coffee event and a prior series of events in which you and Tom both tried out for your company’s football team and you got in while Tom got rejected.  This isn’t just you randomly spouting off, this is you reviewing your current assessment of what just happened to you. 

When your mind tries to run its mental fantasies about you having sexual interactions with children, it is doing a similar thing that you were doing when you vented to your buddy about Tom.  The sexual fantasies are creative and highly symbolic reenactments of certain stressful events that happened to you in real life.  But your mind doesn’t just reenact them. It also vents its emotional distress over what happened.  It explores possible motivations for why whatever happened to you happened.  It tries to invent alternative “what if” scenarios for how you might have responded differently at the time and it tries to calculate how those responses might have changed how much harm was done to you.  All of this venting is essential to the mind feeling less stressed in the moment. 

Now suppose when you are exploding with anger over Tom’s shenanigans, before you can get two words out, your buddy interrupts you and says, “Get over it with Tom already, we all know you have issues with him.  Hey, how about this crazy weather we’re having, huh?”  How is this going to make you feel?  Shutdown, of course.  But what will happen to your emotional upset?  It will instantly grow more intense.  Why?  Because you’re not being allowed to vent some of the emotional tension you are feeling.  

Being able to vent its distress to a sympathetic audience is vital to your subconscious’ ability to cope with ongoing stress.  When you’re trying to secretly help yourself with pedophilia, you have two powerful options to choose from when it comes to providing a sympathetic audience for your mind to vent to.  The first is your own soul.  The second is God.  The smartest move is to use both of these options, because your mind needs all of the help it can get.

In pedophilia, when your mind’s stress levels reach a certain point, it will automatically try to vent off some of the pressure to bring things back down to a manageable degree.  The attempt to vent is what causes the mental fantasy about kids to start playing.  Those fantasies are invented by your subconscious and they are loaded with details that are extremely symbolic and important to your mind.  Being in the presence of something that reminds you of your past trauma (such as being around a child who reminds you too much of yourself when you were first traumatized) is a common stress trigger for the mind in these cases.  You see the child, the child reminds you of certain awful things that happened to you in the past, your mind panics over the contents of those memory files, then your mind immediately tries to bring its stress levels back down by performing a situation analysis.   That situation analysis plays out in the form of a perverse sexual fantasy involving kids. 

Now the best, most effective venting tools are the fantasies that your subconscious creates all on its own, because these fantasies are customized to contain the exact elements that your mind needs to focus on.  Porn videos, on the other hand, are created by other people, and they feel frustrating to your mind because while some of the images seem helpful, others do not.  The big draw of porn for your mind is that watching the video with your eyes causes both your body and conscious to get intensely focused on the material as well, instead of your subconscious trying to run its own videos in the background while its partner elements are only half paying attention.  But while porn videos offer an intensity of concentration and group focus, they are always lacking in details that your mind feels are important.  Remember that the point of these fantasies is to re-enact something that happened to you in real life.  Since other people’s porn videos aren’t created with this purpose in mind, porn videos just can’t satisfy your mind to the degree that its own fantasies do.

Now obviously the whole idea of humans creating porn videos is horrific from beginning to end.  These things should be outlawed and never made in the first place.  Unfortunately, due to how much mental distress exists in the world, the porn industry is extremely lucrative and isn’t going to go away anytime soon.  Yet the fact that a bunch of seedy people are trying to profit off of your psychological misery doesn’t mean you have to play along.  It’s best to avoid watching porn videos whenever you can, simply because you don’t want to be associating yourself with such a sick industry, nor do you want to put yourself at risk of being legally punished.  But the only way you’re going to have any chance at not watching actual porn is if you allow your mind to play its own custom fantasies without giving it a bunch of flack. If instead you try to stifle or punish your mind whenever it tries to vent, you will not only become chained to watching porn, but you will run the risk of harming real life kids.

Your subconscious has immense power over your body and conscious—far more than your soul does.  This means that if your soul gets too nasty towards your subconscious, your subconscious might choose to retaliate by forcing your body to do what it wants.  This is what is happening when you sit at your laptop vowing, “I am not going to watch any porn today!” only to then see your hand reaching for your mouse all on its own and pulling up the very porn site that you swore you would avoid.  In such a moment, you feel as though you are split into two people: one who is adamantly protesting what you’re doing, and another who is operating beyond your realm of control.  This kind of system override occurs when your subconscious feels its stress levels are getting too close to desperate, therefore it must take some of the pressure off.  To avoid these kinds of overrides, your soul needs to stop trying to shut your mind down whenever it tries to vent. 

Now let’s go back to the Tom example.  After you vent to your friend, if your friend responds sympathetically and he seems to genuinely take your side in the issue, what happens to your mood?  You start to feel better.  Sure, you still think Tom is a jerk, but your temper feels safely in check. If instead your friend shuts you down or immediately sides with Tom against you, what will happen to your stress?  It will skyrocket.  Your friend’s betrayal of you will give you a whole new reason to be angry and now you’ll start thinking about ways to hurt Tom in real life.  What goes around, comes around, right?  Perhaps it’s Tom’s turn to take a bath in some scalding liquid.

In pedophilia, the more stressed your mind becomes, the more it will consider the possibility of hurting actual children.  What’s happening in these cases is the mind is trying to act out its custom-made fantasies in the real world.   The goal of molesting a real child is the same as fantasizing about molesting a kid: in both cases, the mind is trying to lower its stress levels. The problem is that once you cross the line into getting hands-on with real victims, the mind’s plan majorly backfires and it becomes more distressed by what it’s doing.  So there is a critical tipping point here: private fantasies relieve psychological stress while abusing real victims increases psychological stress.  The common misconception is that the first thing will guarantee and encourage the second thing to occur, therefore many pedophiles are terrified of allowing themselves to think about kids to any degree.  And yet the truth is that if you allow the private fantasies to occur and respond to them productively, you can eliminate the risk of you ever harming real people.  But if you try to block the private fantasies, you greatly increase the risk that you will end up harming real people.  As you can see, it’s very counterintuitive.  But now that I’ve explained all of this, you will hopefully have a better understanding of why I would not recommend trying to stifle your mind’s need to vent by feeding your body drugs.  In pedophilia, the mind needs to keep reviewing the memory files that are agitating it.  Its interpretation of those files cannot be altered by ingesting chemical substances.  Even if you block yourself from being consciously aware of what your subconscious is obsessing about, that obsession will still be happening in the background.  So we don’t want to use any kind of muzzle here.  Instead, we want to encourage the mind to talk about what’s bothering it and help it adjust its core beliefs to be less distressing.

Productive Responses

In all cases of trauma, the traumatized element needs two things: compassion and new insights that can help it adjust its logic.  These two things are equally important, and you cannot heal any trauma without providing both.  For pedophiles, gaining the new insights takes time because they need to become much better educated on how their own minds work, plus they need help pinpointing the specific beliefs their minds are struggling with.  While that education process is being carried out, compassion can be practiced on a daily basis.  Remember that I said both of these things are equally important to recovery.  A lot of pedophiles resist developing self-compassion because they are impatient for complete healing and they don’t think that talking nicely to their own minds is going to cause any significant changes.  Yet self-compassion is extremely important and the mind is deeply impacted by it.  This means that you’re not “stuck” just because you’re struggling to pinpoint the root causes of your own symptoms.  Compassion can always be practiced in the meantime, and the kinder you treat your own mind, the more communicative your mind will become.

I said earlier that there are two sympathetic audiences available to your mind even when you’re trying to keep your pedophilia a complete secret from other humans.  Your own soul is a critical ally, and you get your soul to improve its attitude by showing it the moral correctness of being kind and gentle towards someone who is suffering.  In pedophilia, the subconscious is the suffering element, and it is in desperate need of kindness from its soul partner.  Understanding every nuance of the mind’s behavior is not necessary for the soul to grasp the key point that the mind is hurting, therefore it needs kindness.  It also helps the soul to realize that all of those disturbing fantasies are evidence that the mind is actively trying to help itself.  The subconscious is not some lazy slacker who is wallowing in perversity because it has nothing better to do.   The subconscious is extremely hardworking, and loyal.  It is constantly trying to protect its partner elements from being negatively affected by its personal distress.  A better understanding of your subconscious’ personal motivations and fierce devotion to your overall well-being can help your soul see that your mind isn’t “evil,” it’s simply doing the best it can with the tools it currently has.  If it could get its hands on better tools and better methods, it would use them.  So rather than stand back constantly criticizing the mind, the soul needs to move in as a supportive partner and help the mind identify better ways to solve its problems. 

Inviting God into the situation is another very smart move.  As a superior, external Judge, God’s compassionate attitude towards your mind provides your soul with an excellent model of how it ought to be reacting to your mind’s distress.  God is also able to guide both your mind and soul to the new insights that they need to form better recovery strategies.  Of course for God’s involvement to feel beneficial and not threatening, your soul needs to be receptive to hearing what God has to say about your personal situation.  Many pedophiles refuse to acknowledge that God is an independent Being who does not let us dictate His views to Him.  But the truth is that God forms His own opinions about us, and those opinions don’t change just because we personally disagree with them.  For pedophiles, being receptive to hearing positive feedback from God can be a major challenge.  To become better at listening to God (instead of trying to put words in His mouth), the soul needs to become better educated on how its own methods of judgment differ from God’s (see Your Soul vs. God: Two Different Judges).

In the early stages of recovery, the soul can practice a compassionate attitude towards the mind by recognizing the mind’s disturbing fantasies for what they are: attempts to review, analyze and understand certain memory files for the purpose of protecting you in the future.  Despite the alarming contents, these fantasies are sincere efforts to help you, and when you look at it that way, you can see why punishing your mind’s efforts is quite unwarranted.

The mind is trying to vent distress by playing its fantasies.  It’s not just wallowing in perversion for perversion’s sake.  Once the soul understands this, it can see why trying to block the mind from venting is actually making the whole situation worse by making it harder for the mind to keep its stress levels manageable.

Due to the kinds of trauma that trigger pedophilia, the mind often feels an intense need to have the body experience a sexual orgasm during its fantasies.  Often the physiological orgasm is an important aspect in helping the mind release stress.  This is due to a bunch of complex factors that I won’t get into here.  Suffice to say that there is an amazing relationship between your four elements which allows them to transfer stress between each other.  Certain physical activities such as laughing, crying, and fidgeting can all be effective ways of helping the subconscious vent some of its psychological stress out of the system.  The same is true for having a physical orgasm. This is why pedophiles often feel an intense need to masturbate while their minds are trying to vent stress by running through sexual fantasies.  Because sexual stimulation is so intensely connected with negative feelings for pedophiles, it’s natural to experience intense grief after achieving climax.  Here again, the mind is trying to vent some of its deep fear and grief over what happened to you in real life.  Instead of stifling those feelings, they should be expressed.  If you feel like crying, cry.  In some cases, directly after a sexual climax is the only time pedophiles are able to connect with the grief they normally keep supressed in their day to day lives.  Understanding that this whole fantasize-masturbate-grieve cycle is vital to helping your mind bring its stress levels down can help you be more patient with this process and make space for it to happen in an appropriate setting instead of trying to always run from it. 

Conclusion

Your friend needs to understand the principles I’ve explained in this post. His soul also needs to be able to start making logical sense of what his mind is doing so it can stop defaulting to its natural assumption that “I’m like this because I’m just a dirty perv.” For vital education on this issue which is explained in a compassionate tone, he should read my book Recovering from Pedophilia.   That book will walk him through specific exercises he can do to identify what the root causes of distress are for his own mind.  Pedophilia can be triggered by a wide range of circumstances, and every case is unique.  Listening to your own mind should always take precedence over accepting popular stereotypes and theories.  Pedophilia is a very poorly understood issue with a lot of misinformation, fear, and hatred associated with it.  But happily, you can make fantastic progress on your own if you have some proper guidance, and especially if you are open to God’s input, as He has far more sympathy for pedophiles than they realize.

This post was written in response to a request.