Aaron Rodgers has gotten some serious attention for his use of psychedelics, particularly his ayahuasca retreat to Costa Rica. As it turns out, Rodgers isn’t the only NFL star who’s sought answers via a higher plane of consciousness from the wondrous plant.
The story of Buffalo Bills safety Jordan Poyer was already an inspiring one. A former seventh-round pick who worked his way to being a respectable starter, and who did so in spite of a serious drinking problem. Although sober since March 2020, Poyer was still struggling with anxiety and depression. Not to mention, he had an injury-riddled 2022 campaign that came right on a heels of a first-team, All-Pro year in 2021. When the Bills got blown out by the Bengals at home in the Divisional Round, that didn’t help.
As revealed in an excellent feature by Dan Pompei of The Athletic that dropped on Thursday, Poyer sought out an ayahuasca retreat in Costa Rica to hopefully find answers to his problems. Sounds a little far-fetched, right? Turns out, it helped a great deal.
Poyer encountered the “highest version of himself” in a surreal, hallucinogenic encounter that helped him heal — and later come to terms with contact with his biological father.
“He was basically saying, ‘Jordan, look at your life, bro — what are you mad at?’…It was what I needed to hear because I wasn’t appreciating anything — not my wife, my daughter, my family, my house. It was all about me and what I wanted.
…I always had this hate and resentment toward him I was holding. This experience enabled me to let that go. I realize I wouldn’t have anything — my daughter and my wife — if not for him. Even if it was just the seed he gave my mom. So someday I’ll meet him, give him a hug and tell him I’m sorry.
…My life has been changed forever, and my purpose is to be a bright light for everybody that I touch and connect with.”
Poyer will return for another retreat in March, and his wife, model/businesswoman Rachel Bush, was thrilled about how the ayahuasca ceremonies reshaped her husband:
“After he did ayahuasca, he became like my dream husband… I was nervous about what it would do to him, but he came back a totally new man, so appreciative of me and our family.”
In case you’re unaware of who Rachel Bush is, or the bodacious biological vehicle her consciousness resides in, here’s a post from her IG if you’re into that sort of thing:
Let us not get too distracted from the main message here, though. Got some nature and plant pics in that gallery at least, so it’s not totally off-point.
Anyway, it’s pretty incredible how rapidly awareness is spreading for psychedelics, and namely how much more accepted they are by society. If a professional athlete was speaking out like this even 10 years ago, they’d be putting their career in jeopardy. Hell, Percy Harvin was bragging a while back about how he used to be high before every game. Meanwhile, transcendent receiving talent Josh Gordon got dinged with years of suspensions for smoking a little weed.
There’s all kinds of advocacy for bringing psychedelic drugs into the mainstream. Ayahuasca has been around for literally thousands of years, which blows the mind to think about. That in and of itself is its own experience, but the far less extreme marijuana has been used for medicinal purposes in recent years. LSD, mushrooms (psilocybin), and MDMA are being introduced in treatments, and Australia even legalized the latter two substances in July.
Cutting back to the Aaron Rodgers of it all, you can’t deny that the Aaron Rodgers we knew before he won two straight MVPs, left Green Bay and landed with the Jets are two totally different dudes. He had nothing short of a radical mindset shift in the way he interacted with teammates, embraced a mentoring/leadership role, and rallied an organization around him once he got to New York. Now, yeah, he blew out his Achilles and that sucks, but i think we’re about to see something special for Gang Green in 2024. Evidently, Poyer went through a similar personal transformation that gave him new perspective and appreciation for playing football and for life in general.
It’ll be fascinating to see where the discourse goes on psychedelics and how their role in society develops in the coming years. Could plants save the entire busted, short-sighted political system!? People are asking.
Check out the vids below for more on Poyer’s battle with alcoholism and Rodgers’ experiences on ayahuasca, a word I will eventually be able to spell without copy-pasting.
Here’s more on Aaron Rodgers’ ayahuasca experience: