Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy
Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index
Schultes, Richard Evans. (1976).
Racine, WI: Golden Press.
first edition, 160 pages, illustrated by Elmer W. Smith.
A Golden Guide. A Spanish edition is available.
Contents: Foreword, 12
unnumbered chapters, more information, index.
Note: Yes, boys and girls,
along with the little Golden Guides to birds, weeds, and butterflies,
there really was a Golden Guide to hallucinogenic plants!
Excerpt(s): No matter
whether we believe that man's intake of hallucinogens in primitive
or sophisticated societ ies constitutes use, misuse,
or abuse, hallucinogenic plants have undeniably played an extensive
role in human culture and probably shall continue to do so. It
follows that a clear understanding of these physically and socially
potent agents should be a part of man's general education. (foreword
by Schultes, page 2)
In his search for food, early man tried all kinds
of plants. Some nourished him, some, he found, cured his ills,
and some killed him. A few, to his surprise, had strange effects
on his mind and body, seeming to carry him into other worlds.
MUSHROOM WORSHIP seems
to have roots in centuries of native tradition. Mexican frescoes,
going back to A.D. 300, have designs suggestive of mushrooms.
Even more remarkable are the artifacts called mushroom stones
excavated in large numbers from highland Maya sites in Guatamala
and dating back to 1000 B.C. Consisting of a stem with a human
or animal face and surrounded by an umbrella-shaped top, they
long puzzled archaeologists. Now interpreted as a kind of icon
connected with religious rituals , they indicate that
3,000 years ago, a sophisticated religion surrounded the sacramental
use of these fungi.
It has been suggested that perhaps mushrooms were
the earliest hallucinogenic plants to be discovered. The other-worldly
experience induced by these mysterious forms of plant liafe could
easily suggested a spiritual plane of existence. (page 59)
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Compilation copyright © 1995 2001 CSP