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Deepak Chopra says he wants to bring awareness to psychedelics as a potential source of mind-body healing

Self-care leader Deepak Chopra announced a new partnership Tuesday with MindMed, a clinical-stage psychedelic medicine biotech company, and explained that the collaboration was in line with his continued interest in the relation of the mind to body. 

“I am partnering with MindMed for the public education and the public awareness of the research on psychedelics,” Chopra said. “I don’t believe psychedelics are a panacea, but I think they have a big role…with PTSD, in mental distress depression, suicide prevention and much, much more.” 

A phase 3 clinical trial revealed that MDMA, popularly known as ecstasy, combined with therapy helped people with severe post-traumatic stress disorder. Two-thirds of participants in the MDMA test group no longer qualified for a diagnosis of PTSD two months after treatment. Therapists caution, however, that the treatment cannot be replicated at home with the street version of the drug. 

Chopra told CNBC’s  “The News with Shepard Smith” that mental distress “is the number one pandemic in the world,” and that every 40 seconds, someone is committing suicide, and was another reason why he wants to bring awareness to psychedelics. 

Host Shepard Smith did note to Chopra that he has “a long history of supporting alternative medicines with varying results that are often questioned by doctors,” and wanted to know how his partnership with MindMed is different. Smith added a quote by evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins who has said that Chopra uses “quantum jargon as plausible-sounding hocus pocus.” 

Chopra explained to Smith that a Google search would result in the evidence when it comes to psychedelics and mindfulness. 

“You just have to look up, just Google the evidence on mindfulness and mindful awareness on psychedelics, and ignore people like Dawkins,” Chopra said.

Richard Dawkins did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.