Tag Archives: Entheogens

The Creative Process and Entheogens by Alex Grey


The Creative Process and Entheogens by Alex Grey – adapted from The Mission of Art . This article appeared in MAPS publication Volume X, number 3 – Creativity in 2000.

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Plant Spirit Shamanism – Russian edition


Plant Spirit Shamanism - Russian edition

An in-depth look at the role of plant spirits in shamanic rituals from around the world

In Plant Spirit Shamanism, the authors explore the use of one of the major allies of shamans for healing, seeing, dreaming, and empowerment–plant spirits. After observing great similarities in the use of plants among shamans throughout the world, they discovered the reason behind these similarities: Rather than dealing with the “medical properties” of the plants or specific healing techniques, shamans commune with the spirits of the plants themselves.

From their years of in-depth shamanic work in the Amazon, Haiti, and Europe, including extensive field interviews with master shamans, the authors present the core methods of plant shamanism used in healing rituals the world over: soul retrieval, spirit extraction, sin eating, and the Amazonian tradition of pusanga (love medicine). They explain the techniques shamans use to establish connections to plant spirits and provide practical exercises as well as a directory of traditional Amazonian and Caribbean healing plants and their common North American equivalents so readers can explore the world of plant spirits and make allies of their own.

Reviews


Plant Spirit Shamanism takes readers into realms that defy rational logic and scientific theory, showing graphically that we humans are not the only intelligent life on this planet. From their extensive travels to indigenous cultures that understand life very differently from those in the ‘developed’ world, the authors reveal a wealth of plant knowledge that has been lost to Western civilization. This book is both a fascinating read and a considerable challenge to the orthodox mind.”
(Leo Rutherford, author of The Way of Shamanism and Your Shamanic Path )

Pablo Amaringo with Howard G Charing

Pablo Amaringo wrote an inspirational foreword for the book.

“This is an incredible book, a book with depth that speaks to the soul. . . . The knowledge in this book could very easily be put to good use in everyday life, which makes it a ‘keeper; for any healer’s library.”
(Bonnie Cehovet, Angelfire, Sept 2006 )

Plant Spirit Shamanism explores not the usual medicinal qualities of plants, but shamanic communications with the spirits of the plants themselves. . . . Healers will find this essential to understanding plant processes.”
(Diane C. Donovon, California Bookwatch, Nov 2006 )

“A practical and useful guide for healing on a deeper level, using Mother Nature’s power.”
(Vicky Thompson, New Connexion, Nov-Dec 2006 )

“Healers will find this essential to understanding plant processes.”
(California Bookwatch, Nov 2006 )

“The book is not simply a dry academic discussion of these topics, although that alone would be intrinsically interesting. Instead, it provides cross-cultural perspectives on all aspects of plant-spirit based healing. . . . Whether you want to learn to practice plant-spirit medicine–or simply want to gain a better understanding of it–this book will be a useful addition to your botanical library.” (
Dennis J. McKenna, Ph.D., HerbalGram, Journal of American Botanical Council, No. 78, May/July 2008 )

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Moses, Hallucinogens, and the Ten Commandments: Biblical Entheogens


Biblical Entheogens: Speculative Hypothesis

Paper originally published in:

Time and Mind:
The Journal of Archaeology Consciousness and Culture
Volume I—Issue I, March 2008, pp. 51–74

Biblical Entheogens: Speculative Hypothesis- Original Paper

Benny Shanon is Professor of psychology at the Hebrew university of Jerusalem (Israel). His main foci of research are the phenomenology of human consciousness and the philosophy of psychology. His publications include The representational and the Presentational (1993) and The Antipodes of the Mind (2002). At present, he is working on book devoted to a general psychological theory of human consciousness.

Moses and Hallucinogens

The worldwide media interest in Benny Shanon’s paper about Moses and entheogens, is encouraging us to take a good and hard look at the roots of religions and the notion that they were based on fertility cults, and shamanic practices such as Entheogens (or hallucinogenic) plants as a source of spiritual communion with the universal consciousness, or the mind of God.Article by Howard G. Charing, co-author of the best-selling book ‘Plant Spirit Shamanism’ published by Destiny Books (USA), and ‘The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo’ Inner Traditions (USA)

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Ayahuasca, Moses, and the Ten Commandments – Entheogens of the Old Testament


Israeli researcher

Moses was high on drugs: Israeli researcher

The world wide media interest in Benny Shanon’s paper about Moses and entheogens, is encouraging us to take a good and hard look at the roots of religions and the notion that they were based on fertility cults, and shamanic practices such as Entheogens (or hallucinogenic) plants as a source of spiritual communion with the universal consciousness, or the mind of God.

John Allegro, in his book “The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross: A Study of the Nature and Origins of Christianity within the Fertility Cults of the Ancient Near East”, postulated through the etymology of words and relates how the development of language indicated that the roots of the religions emanating from the Middle East were based on fertility cults, and shamanic practices such as Entheogens (or hallucinogenic) plants as a source of spiritual communion with the universal consciousness, or the mind of God..

Back in the 1970’s the reaction against these ideas was so strong that it destroyed Allegro’s career, the book was not published in the UK as it was regarded as blasphemous, and blasphemy was still a crime. It’s good to think that we have made some progress in recent years.

Allegro’s theory was visionary and ground-breaking. He was the first to propose in some detail that two major religions Christianity and by extension Judaism were entheogen-oriented and that the entheogen was Amanita Muscaria. His book was published at a time when there was little or no awareness about the use of entheogens, and was indeed a courageous act to publish this book.

Another great explorer and pathfinder in human consciousness was Terence Mckenna, in his book “Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge A Radical History of Plants, Drugs, and Human Evolution”, proposed that hallucinogenic plants, in this case Psilocybin mushrooms, were the cause of the astounding and unexplained rapid evolution and development of the human brain within the evolutionary time scale (just 500,000 years from the hominids). In other words how we developed from our ape relatives . His theory also encompasses the development of linguistics , and human civilisation itself.

JERUSALEM (AFP) – High on Mount Sinai, Moses was on psychedelic drugs when he heard God deliver the Ten Commandments, an Israeli researcher claimed in a study published this week.

Such mind-altering substances formed an integral part of the religious rites of Israelites in biblical times, Benny Shanon, a professor of cognitive psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem wrote in the Time and Mind journal of philosophy.

“As far Moses on Mount Sinai is concerned, it was either a supernatural cosmic event, which I don’t believe, or a legend, which I don’t believe either, or finally, and this is very probable, an event that joined Moses and the people of Israel under the effect of narcotics,” Shanon told Israeli public radio on Tuesday.

Moses was probably also on drugs when he saw the “burning bush,” suggested Shanon, who said he himself has dabbled with such substances.

The Bible says people see sounds, and that is a clasic phenomenon,” he said citing the example of religious ceremonies in the Amazon in which drugs are used that induce people to “see music.”

Israeli researcher He mentioned his own experience when he used ayahuasca, a powerful psychotropic plant, during a religious ceremony in Brazil‘s Amazon forest in 1991. “I experienced visions that had spiritual-religious connotations,” Shanon said.

He said the psychedelic effects of ayahuasca were comparable to those produced by concoctions based on bark of the acacia tree, that is frequently mentioned in the Bible.

source: Yahoo News.

Paper originally published in:

Time and Mind:
The Journal of Archaeology Consciousness and Culture
Volume I—Issue I, March 2008

Biblical Entheogens: Speculative Hypothesis

pp. 51–74

Benny Shanon is Professor of psychology at the Hebrew university of Jerusalem (Israel). His main foci of research are the phenomenology of human consciousness and the philosophy of psychology. His publications include The representational and the Presentational (1993) and The Antipodes of the Mind (2002). At present, he is working on book devoted to a general psychological theory of human consciousness.

Original Paper by Benny Shanon

Click for info on our Ayahuasca and Yoga Retreats www.shamanism.co.uk

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