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Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy

Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index


The Peyote Cult.

La Barre, Weston. (1969).
New York: Schocken Books.


ISBN: None


Description: Paperback, enlarged edition, with a new preface by the author, xvii + 260 pages.


Contents: Preface to the paperback edition, 3 chapters, index.


Note: This edition incorporates The Peyote Cult originally published as Yale University Publications in Anthropology No. 19 in 1938, " Twenty Years of Peyote Studies" from Vol. 1, No. 1 of Current Anthropology, and a new section "The Last Five Years of Peyote Studies." See 1989 edition below.


Excerpt(s): This is the classical study of the background of the Mexican and American Indian ritual based on the plant that produces profound but temporary sensory and psychic derangements. Acid-heads and mind-blowing cultists will find much thought-food in this careful anthropological work, and the author's new Preface, with its penetrating appraisal of the use of artificial psychedelic drugs as instruments of revolt.

Professor La Barre strongly supports what he considers the legitimate use of natural peyote in the ritual of the Native American Church: "Western man already complacently accepts (since it is ours) the mass use of substances such as tobacco and alcohol which, to physical health can be more dangerous,than a weekly Indian use of a feebly psychotropic desert plant.

The study started when the author was twenty-four; he participated in the rites of fifteen tribes using Lophora williamsii ( Lemaire) a small, spineless, carrot-shaped cactus growing in the Rio Grande Valley and southward. The original study has been supplemented by two essays that bring the account up to 1964, including a report of the Timothy Leary "debacle" at Harvard in 1963. (back cover)



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