Aaron Rodgers, the NFL quarterback, said this week that using psychedelics helped alleviate his fear of death. He revealed that he had lived with the teenager who preceded him as the most valuable player in the NFL for the year, and that his experience with ayahuasca brew, a psychedelic, followed that earlier admission.
Rodgers replied that he no longer engages in that behavior, explaining that he relies on psychedelics to assist him in overcoming his fear. He made this statement during his regular appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” on Tuesday, when his former teammate, A.J. Hawk, inquired about his anxieties surrounding mortality.
Rodgers, as cited by CBS, expressed, “I possessed a significant apprehension of mortality… Do you recall the peculiar atmosphere surrounding Y2K? The global catastrophe was imminent.” “I will not be able to achieve my desired goals,” I pondered, envisioning the possibility of the world’s demise when I was merely sixteen, bearing in mind my youthful adolescence.
“I definitely had a ‘death of fear’ experience,” continued Green Bay Packers star Aaron Rodgers. “And honestly, psilocybin and ayahuasca,” he continued, “really helped me feel less stressed about the idea of needing to achieve things before I die. It’s like seeing the other side of death when you think about it. It helped me let go of a lot of the fear around the idea of needing to accomplish things before I actually die… And it alleviated some of that fear.”
Rodgers said that using psychedelics made it easier for him to confront his own mortality. He also mentioned that his fear of death led him to worry about not being able to experience his life goals, whether it be getting married or playing in the NFL.
Rodgers expressed, “When you have seen the other side, it makes you think of life as more of a passage and less of a chapter.” “It relieves a lot of stress around the idea of needing to accomplish things before actually dying, taking away some of that fear.”
NFL Player Disclosed Usage of Psychedelics During the Summer
During his appearance on the Marcus Aubrey podcast, Rodgers revealed that his experiences with ayahuasca had helped him find mental clarity and self-love. He shared that the psychedelic drug had significantly improved his mental health and transformed his mindset. Prior to being selected as the most valuable player in back-to-back seasons, Rodgers had traveled to South America to try ayahuasca. In August, he disclosed that this traditional brew had been instrumental in enhancing his mental wellness and altering his thought patterns.
He said that he never knew he would be going through the same experience following ayahuasca. The Superbowl champion quarterback said that he made a trip to South America before winning the MVP award for the third and fourth time.
Rodgers expressed, as cited by USA Today, “No, it provided me with a profound and significant understanding of life. My objective on the initial night was ‘I desire to experience the sensation of pure love.’ That was my goal. And I achieved it. I truly did. I had a enchanting encounter with the feeling of numerous hands on my physique conveying a benediction of love and pardon for myself, as well as appreciation for this existence from what appeared to be my forefathers.” “Personally, I did not engage in that activity and contemplate ‘oh, I will never participate in football anymore.'”
“In 2019, a research study conducted by Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris, who is the director of the Centre for Psychedelic Research at Imperial College London, discovered that the mixture of leaves and vines called ayahuasca is utilized by native communities in the Amazon basin of South America for social and spiritual rituals. This mixture includes dimethyltryptamine (DMT), a powerful hallucinogenic substance that can induce highly vivid sensations and hallucinations. The scientists likened the alteration in brainwaves caused by the ayahuasca brew to the experience of being in a dreamlike state while being awake.”
Carhart-Harris explained, “This small study is a first step along the road to understanding the important relationship between consciousness and brain activity, which may yield valuable insights through research with DMT. It is difficult to communicate and capture what it is like for people experiencing DMT, but it can be likened to a near-death experience or being awake while dreaming. The depth and vividness of visual immersion, reported on a larger scale with widely studied psychedelics like ‘magic mushrooms’ or psilocybin, seems to be particularly intriguing with DMT.”
During the podcast interview with Marcus, Rodgers mentioned that his encounter with ayahuasca “established a path for me to approach my job with a fresh outlook and attain a greater sense of liberation. This allowed me to operate more freely as a leader, teammate, friend, and lover. I genuinely believe that this experience laid the groundwork for my most successful season in my career (in 2020).”
The improvements in his mental health, which were aided by ayahuasca, helped him reframe his mindset, leading to his third and fourth MVP awards in 2020 and 2021, respectively, making them the best seasons of his career.
Rodgers expressed his disbelief in coincidences and emphasized that he did not believe in them, especially at this particular moment when things were happening in the universe. He specifically mentioned that he did not think of it as a coincidence, referring to the ayahuasca experience in South America.
He continued, “What are you supposed to be doing, hey dummy? When our intuition speaks to us and pounds in our heads, we should listen to it and take them into consideration. We should also be aware enough to see all the synchronicities and signs that are happening around us at all times.”
Following a previous encounter with mind-altering substances, Rodgers expressed his decision to experiment with ayahuasca. Recalling a beach experience where he described a profound connection with the ocean, the renowned NFL player had previously confided in Marcus about a memorable day involving the consumption of hallucinogenic mushrooms.
According to Rodgers, instead of the uncomfortable hallucinations, diarrhea, and vomiting that are commonly associated with ayahuasca, the drug has the potential to induce profound self-love, healing, and transformative experiences.
Self-care, according to Rodgers, was a crucial advantage of his journey towards mental well-being.
Rodgers expressed, “The contribution of ayahuasca for me was to assist me in realizing how to wholeheartedly embrace myself, which is one of the fundamental principles of maintaining good mental well-being. It is solely through that unwavering self-acceptance that I am genuinely capable of extending unconditional love towards others. Moreover, what could be a more effective approach to enhancing my mental health than engaging in an experience of that nature? In my perspective.”