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Apes stoned on drugs became modern man

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IronGhost

Sure, I dig, rane.

The danger here is oversimplifying what is a very well developed and complex theory.

The development of the human ego is a gigantic story in and of itself. For the human ego to develop, several other layers of conscious development had to be achieved -- it's a whole subject within itself.

Hominids doing drugs may have been a necessary step in the long process chain that led from primates having an animal-like consciousness ( that is, lack of self-reflective awareness) to group consciousness, etc., etc.

Also, just because these guys took drugs in the 70s does not strip them of all credibility, or negate their ideas. The 70s isn't the only decade when thinkers were using drugs -- drugs have been part of the creative process for centuries -- and even tens of thousands of years.

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Reincarnated
i agree its possible primitive man took hallucinogens...but it didn't help them develop the "human ego"
it's not "possible", it's fact. the amount of stupid people here amaze me and that is an understatement. this theory does not state that hallucinogens are responsible for mankind to evolve from primative animals, it is simply stating that hallucinogens played a role in the process. if you had any knowledge on this subject and weren't such ignorant fools, this theory wouldn't sound stupid to you. people here have lazy brains.

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kaknelson

I suppose this thread is advocating that drugs are good.

And that, since mans imagination was created through hallucinations; Everyone do drugs! For the evolution of mankind is at stake here! :no:

Edited by Kaknelson

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Reincarnated
I suppose this thread is advocating that drugs are good.
no, it's not dumbass.

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jpjoe

Makes sense to me. But so far, it is still a theory, out of probably thousands of theories (scholarly or not) out there.

I'm assuming that this article rooted from the author's cathartic implication of his era on drug fad.

@Kaknelson: The author is merely stating a possibility. Even without the aid of shrooms, evolution shall still take place.

Edited by jpjoe

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Bearly

I suppose this thread is advocating that drugs are good.

And that, since mans imagination was created through hallucinations; Everyone do drugs! For the evolution of mankind is at stake here! :no:

LOL

I guess you didn't read my PS. :innocent:

Hey, rasta man, didn't you start the thread on ganja and how it enhances your meditative thought process--

weed growing on solomon's grave and the like...

Oh, you mean the 'other' drugs...

Not that I am moralizing you, smoke what you like... at least the kind smoke doesn't give you hangovers

Edited by Bearly

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kaknelson

no, it's not dumbass.

Please don't judge me. Nor attempt to refer to my intelligence in a diminutive manner.

Please do not

@Kaknelson: The author is merely stating a possibility. Even without the aid of shrooms, evolution shall still take place.

I have heard this possibilty before. "Apes stoned on drugs became modern man"... i was simply stating that if this is true, our intellect and imagination are from "drugs". LOL... interesting, but merely a theory.

LOL

I guess you didn't read my PS. :innocent:

Hey, rasta man, didn't you start the thread on ganja and how it ehances your meditative thought process--

weed growing on solomon's grave and the like...

Oh, you mean the 'other' drugs...

Not that I am moralizing you, smoke what you like... at least the kind smoke doesn't give you hangovers

Very true. I like how u ended that. :tu:

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Anubi

well if stoned apes led to the advent of modern man , than i am doing more than my fair share of my evolutionary duties by way far to much !

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SandDunePsychonaut

Great theory, I might read it, but sad that it will likely never be proved nor dissed, however there are relevent points to be made regarding psychedelics involvement with the evolution of early man to present. In more elaboration of 3 of IronGhosts' counterpoints (good btw):

1. It has been shown that increased amount of protein in the diet causes enlarged brains leading to high brain functions.

Yes, of course protein is esential to brain growth. The arcticle clearly states shrooms grow best in cattle dung. That means that as humans grew smarter, they eventually were able to domesticate cattle, which in turn provided more manure, which was excellent for growing more mushrooms. The point in which humans realized we could domesticate animals, (unknown and the subject for more theories) instead of following their migrations was the point we stopped being nomads and formed settled groups! This provided more and fresher meat. Domestication meant migration/hunting was not necessarily required likely resulting in more time for expanding consciousness (thinking deeper thoughts and feeling wider emotions among other things.) Yet, even before domestication pre-man could "trip" together on hunts, in caves, etc. which led to group consciousness which led to unified individuals being and working with a feeling of togetherness.

This rigorous excersising of the brain in thought and feeling could've resulted in increasing intelligence and brain size over the course of individuals and generations, resulting in evolution as a species. Let alone the fact that they were conscious of their own evolution thus being able to observe how and where they were evolving as the smarter animal species, over animals which were not aware of their own evolution.

2. This theory fails to state why only homo sapiens brains evolved so much farther then any other hominid.

Well, I just explained that.

4. Mental and physical tolerance to psilocybin builds and dissipates quickly. Taking psilocybin more than three or four times in a week (especially two days in a row) can result in diminished effects.

Chances are they did not have that many mushrooms at hand and if they did, they would know that taking them too often would result in increased tolerance. I speculate they did them once a month at most for full effect. Lower body weight would also mean increased sensitivity.

5. It has not been proven that we have the ability to code data outside the confines of DNA.

WHAT does this even mean?

6. It has not been proven that we have cognitive activities that allow us to transmit information across space and time.

WHAT? Do you mean telepathy? I have experiences "group consciousness" where we all felt as one being who knew eachothers thoughts and all felt the same feelings. I know this just sounds cheesy and I guess it can't be proved but perhaps this gave way to speech and language and art.

9. If there was a symbiotic relationship between human beings and mushrooms, in which humans started to cultivate mushrooms, when and why did we stop. NOTE: In Shamanic tradition hallucinogens are gathered in nature, not cultivated. So if we originally cultivate the mushrooms then shamanic tribes would be the most likely to still do it.

We didn't stop. Maybe people who you know don't experience this relationship but that doesn't mean humans altogether stopped. Perhaps the organized religions born in the middle east deemed them "evil", which led to governments deeming them "harmful."

We didn't ORIGINALLY cultivate them, we just learned that we could upon domesticating wildlife.

10. Plants have not been shown to be conscious.

Maybe, but in the experience of mushrooms, all life can be considered one being in the universe, "individuated" into different ways so that all life may know itself experientially. Which lkely have led to your last point.

11. Ontology and religion do not relate to evolution.

Think hard about this one. If you mean animals, no. Humans, without a doubt it did. However religion started after spirituality which I believe psychedelics have caused. Mushrooms led to the realization that we are more than just our bodies, that we have a spirit which gives our bodies life. Seeing all life as having a spirit, this gave rise to the worship of nature and the believe in the afterlife, as evident with neanderthal and cro-magnon burial rituals. Yes, as humans and their consciousness evolves, they necessarily reshape their views on spirituality and religion which changes the evolution of humanity as a whole. Just look at history for examples.

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kaknelson

well if stoned apes led to the advent of modern man , than i am doing more than my fair share of my evolutionary duties by way far to much !

LOL !!!!!!!!

My friend, stick to the holy herb!

Most others, IMO are roads that one shouldn't travel. However, there are those that enjoy their own natural remedies like:

Ayahuasca

Cedar

Datura

Deadly nightshade

Fly agaric

Iboga

Morning glory

Peyote

Psychedelic mushrooms - Alluded to euphemistically as "holy children" by Mazatec shamans such as Maria Sabina.**Sweetgrass

Sage

Salvia divinorum - (sometimes called Diviners' sage)

San Pedro

Tobacco (ewww)

Edited by Kaknelson

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Marvy

...

...

Tobacco (ewww)

Hey thats my favorite drug...whats wrong wit that?

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kaknelson

Hey thats my favorite drug...whats wrong wit that?

Chewing tobacco maybe, but smoking tobacc KILLS. :devil:

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Bearly

****while I agree with some of your statements, i don't fully with others

This rigorous excersising of the brain in thought and feeling could've resulted in increasing intelligence and brain size over the course of individuals and generations, resulting in evolution as a species. Let alone the fact that they were conscious of their own evolution thus being able to observe how and where they were evolving as the smarter animal species, over animals which were not aware of their own evolution.

****We were aware of our own evolution??? Questionable..

2. This theory fails to state why only homo sapiens brains evolved so much farther then any other hominid.

Well, I just explained that.

***Other hominids and other animals would have stumbled upon mushrooms and other drugs also

6. It has not been proven that we have cognitive activities that allow us to transmit information across space and time.

WHAT? Do you mean telepathy? I have experiences "group consciousness" where we all felt as one being who knew eachothers thoughts and all felt the same feelings. I know this just sounds cheesy and I guess it can't be proved but perhaps this gave way to speech and language and art.

***I know what you mean, but some points. I think mushrooms sometimes amplify the thought process. 'group consciousness' feeling can be experienced through other venues, such as music and the arts experienced as a group. I don't think group concsiousness ESP as a result of shrooming was the rise of lanuage, as other animals vocalize also. As for music and visual art? Drugs enhance such experiences, but did they give rise to them??

**A thought..

Hallucinagens are called psychotropic (sp) because they are deemed to mimic the psychotic condition. Mayby we're just a bunch of crazy apes with our art and music and wars and what not. Look at all the great artists who were deemed crazy. :rofl: Maybe we've evolved because we're freaking bonkers. Ah, there's another book yet to be written B)

10. Plants have not been shown to be conscious.

Maybe, but in the experience of mushrooms, all life can be considered one being in the universe, "individuated" into different ways so that all life may know itself experientially. Which lkely have led to your last point.

***maybe. I think you are giving to much credit to the experience of mushrooms, they enhance and warp natural experiences, but are they the cause???? My question applies to all of your statements to some degree.

11. Ontology and religion do not relate to evolution.

Think hard about this one. If you mean animals, no. Humans, without a doubt it did. However religion started after spirituality which I believe psychedelics have caused. Mushrooms led to the realization that we are more than just our bodies, that we have a spirit which gives our bodies life. Seeing all life as having a spirit, this gave rise to the worship of nature and the believe in the afterlife, as evident with neanderthal and cro-magnon burial rituals. Yes, as humans and their consciousness evolves, they necessarily reshape their views on spirituality and religion which changes the evolution of humanity as a whole. Just look at history for examples.

***Your spiritual experiences can be experienced through natural (without drugs) meditative methods and even paranormal. The natural meditative experience is less evident perhaps, while with shrooms it can be overwhelming. Once you've learned the lesson, there is no need to repeat the class and one should move on. For what it's worth, I advise more natural meditative practices. Bad trips are not fun :o and I don't wish them on anyone.

Edited by Bearly

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KB8

hahahhaha I couldnt stop laughing when I first read this lmao :lol:

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SandDunePsychonaut

Nice post Bearly, you made me laugh at my own post as well. :tu:

****We were aware of our own evolution??? Questionable..

Maybe maybe not, but we are now! We can decide where we want to evolve as who we are and who we choose to be as human beings.

***Other hominids and other animals would have stumbled upon mushrooms and other drugs also

Perhaps the experience for the other animals felt frightening and against their instincts.

*** I don't think group conciousness ESP as a result of shrooming was the rise of language, as other animals vocalize also.

Good point. But words are just a tool with which to express ideas and feelings so its not inconceivable that with these, thoughts and feelings associated that words developed into expressions of emotion. What else could have given rise to the evolution of vocal chords. It is an abstract theory though.

**A thought..Hallucinagens are called psychotropic (sp) because they are deemed to mimic the psychotic condition.

Well that depends on what you deem psychotic. Shrooms do cause you take a trip "out of your mind" but that is not to be confused with craziness. (shrooms) are a journey to mastery. It is a journey that will lead you out of the "reality" of your own construction and into a wondrous dream which your life was intended to be. It is a journey that will lead you to understanding and the Creator. It has been said that when human beings reach mastery, nothing makes them unhappy.

***Your spiritual experiences can be experienced through natural (without drugs) meditative methods and even paranormal. The natural meditative experience is less evident perhaps, while with shrooms it can be overwhelming. Once you've learned the lesson, there is no need to repeat the class and one should move on. For what it's worth, I advise more natural meditative practices. Bad trips are not fun and I don't wish them on anyone.

Well, I was talking about early man, and I can talk forever about spirituality and whatnot but how do you define meditation? And are not mushrooms natural? It's not like they are lsd or some ****. I advise natural meditative practices as well in whatever form or way works for you. It is never too late to step away from the illusion, see it for what it is, and use it to allow yourself to experience the ultimate reality of who you really are in communion with all that is. In that moment of communion you will know that unity is the truth of your being and there is no separation of anything from anything. But when you come out of your meditation, you will understand, and see from your experience, that it is the denial of this truth that perpetrates the negative effects of the illusion: need, failure, disunity, insufficiency, requirement, judgement, condemnation, conditionality, superiority, and ignorance. The first five of these have to do with physical illusions of the body and the second five are the metaphysical illusions.We are not separate from eachother, nor any part of life or god. For it is whole and holy.

Which class lesson do you speak of? Of course there is no need, need is the first illusion. But what i think you are saying is to remember your trip? To remember who we really are, and that once we have done that we have quite literally re-membered ourselves into One Being. "Take this all of you and eat it...do this in rememberance of me" :rofl:

Bad trips....never had one. Happiness is not the result of certain conditions, certain conditions are the result of happiness. I'm going to stop this whatever now.

Whoever's reading this must think I'm out of my mind or I'm a burnout hippy who does drugs everyday but I haven't done anything in two months+ :P 'cept a 3.2 on easter. MODERATION IS THE KEY.

Like yourself Bearly, I'm not advocating anything - what you do is a statement of who you are and who you choose to be. blah, this is mumbo jumbo :blink:

Peace love and unity people

Edited by SandDunePsychonaut

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joc

I have known some old hippy LSD burn outs....how come they aren't ruling the world? :hmm:

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Grandpa Greenman

I have known some old hippy LSD burn outs....how come they aren't ruling the world? :hmm:

LOL, He is President of the United States.

Taking mushrooms is dangerous. First you have to know you've picked the right ones. Second how much to you take they very in strength. Strychnine is tricky stuff; you don't want to take too much. Darn things made me barf every time.

It takes longer to do it the natural way through meditation to achieve what you can with mushrooms shorter time, but it sticks with you longer, because you train your brain to see reality in a different way without the brain damage.

I am not saying it is completely wrong but I wouldn't play around with it without an experienced Shaman as a guide. That is what got everyone in trouble in the 60's and 70's with it they did it as recreation. Too many pitfalls in it to play around with it.

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FireMoon

I have known some old hippy LSD burn outs....how come they aren't ruling the world? hmm.gif

And what empirical evidence do you have, that they do not??? :lol:

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Reincarnated

Mushrooms and Man

Humanity's use of mushrooms extends back to Paleolithic times. Few people-even

anthropologists-comprehend how influential mushrooms have been in affecting

the course of human evolution. Mushrooms have played pivotal roles in ancient

Greece, India and Mesoamerica. Try to their beguiling nature, fungi have

always elicited deep emotional responses: from adulation by those who

understand them to outright fear by those who do not.

The historical record reveals that mushrooms have been used for less than

benign purposes. Claudius II and Pope Clement VII were both killed by enemies

who poisoned them with deadly Amanitas. Buddha died, according to legend, from

a mushroom that grew underground. Buddha was given the mushroom by a peasant

who believed it to be a delicacy. In ancient verse, that mushroom was linked

to the phrase "pig's foot" but has never been identified. (Although truffles

grow underground and pigs are used to find them, no deadly poisonous species

are known.)

The oldest archeological of mushroom use discovered so far is probably a

Tassili image from a cave which dates back 3,500 years before the birth of

Christ. The artist's intent is clear. Mushrooms with electrified auras are

depicted outlining a dancing shaman. The spiritual interpretation of the image

transcends time and is obvious. No wonder that word "bemushroomed" has evolved

to reflect the devout mushroom lover's state of mind.

In the winter of 1991, hikers in the Italian Alps came across the well

preserved remains of a man who died over 5,300 years ago, approximately 200

years later than the Tassili cave artist. Dubbed the "Iceman" by the news

media, he was well equipped with a knapsack, flint axe, a string of dried

Birch Polypores (Piptoporus betulinus) and another yet unidentified mushroom.

The polypores can be used as tinder for starting fires and as medicine for

treating wounds. Further, a rich tea with immune-enhancing properties can be

prepared by boiling these mushrooms. Equipped for traversing the wilderness,

this intrepid adventurer had discovered the value of the noble polypores. Even

today, this knowledge can be life-saving for anyone astray in the wilderness.

Fear of mushroom poisoning pervades every culture, sometimes reaching phobic

extremes. The term mycophobic describes those individuals and cultures where

fungi are looked upon with fear and loathing. Mycophobic cultures are

epitomized by the English and Irish. In contrast, mycophilic societies can be

found throughout Asia and eastern Europe, especially amongst Polish, Russian

and Italian peoples. These societies have enjoyed a long history of mushroom

use, with as many as a hundred common names to describe the mushroom varieties

they loved.

The use of mushrooms by diverse cultures was intensively studied by an

investment banker named R. Gordon Wasson. His studies concentrated on the use

of mushrooms by Mesoamerican, Russian, English, and Indian cultures. With the

French mycologist, Dr. Roger Heim, Wasson published research on Psilocybe

mushrooms in Mesoamerica, and on Amanita mushrooms in Euro-Asia/Siberia.

Wasson's studies spanned a lifetime marked by a passionate love for fungi. His

publications include: Mushrooms, Russia, & History;The Wondrous

Mushroom;Mycolatry in Mesoamerica;Maria Sabina and her Mazatec Mushroom

Velada;and Persephone's Quest: Entheogens and the Origins of Religion. More

than any other individual of the 20th century, Wasson kindled interest in

ethnomycology to its present state of intense study. Wasson died on Christmas

Day in 1986.

One of Wasson's most provocative findings can be found in Soma: Divine

Mushroom of Immortality (1976) where he postulated that the mysterious SOMA in

the Vedic literature, a red fruit leading to spontaneous enlightenment for

those who ingested it, was actually a mushroom. The Vedic symbolism carefully

disguised its true identity: Amanita muscaria, the hallucinogenic Fly Agaric.

Many cultures portray Amanita muscaria as the archetypal mushroom. Although

some Vedic scholars disagree with his interpretation, Wasson's exhaustive

research still stands. (See Brough (1971) and Wasson (1972)).

Aristotle, Plato, and Sophocles all participated in religious ceremonies at

Eleusis where an unusal temple honored Demeter, the Goddess of Earth. For over

two milennia, thousands of pilgrims journeyed fourteen miles from Athens to

Eleusis, paying the equivalent of a month's wage for the privilege of

attendind the annual ceremony. The pilgrimgs were ritually harassed on their

journed to the temple, apparently in good humor.

Upon arriving at the temple, the gathered in the initiation hall, a great

telestrion. Inside the temple, pilgrims sat in rows that descended step=wise

to a hidden, central chamger from which fungal concoction was served. An odd

feature was an array of columns, beyond any apparent structural need, whose

designed purpose escaped archaeologists. The pilgrims spend the night together

and reportedly came away forever changed. In this pavilion crowded with

pillars, ceremonies occurred, known by historians as the Eleusian Mysteris. No

revelation of the ceremony's secrets could be mentioned under the punishment

of imprisonment or death. These ceremonies continued until repressed in the

early centuries of the Christian era.

In 1977, at a mushroom conference on the Olympic Peninsula, R. Gordon Wasson,

Albert Hofmann, and Carl Ruck first postulated, that the Eleusinian mysteries

centered on the use of psychoactive fungi. Their papers were later published

in a book entitled The Road the Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries

(1978). That Aristotle and other founders of western philosophy undertook such

intellectual adventures, and that this secret ceremony persisted for nearly

2,000 years, underscores the profound impact that fungal rites have had on the

evolution of western consciousness.

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Reincarnated

Psilocybe Mushroom History

Hallucinogenic mushrooms have been part of human culture as far back as the earliest recorded history. Ancient paintings of mushroom-ed humanoids dating to 5,000 B.C. have been found in caves on the Tassili plateau of Northern Algeria. Central and Southern America cultures built temples to mushroom gods and carved "mushroom stones". These stone carvings in the shape of mushrooms, or in which figures are depicted under the cap of a mushroom, have been dated to as early as 1000-500 B.C. The purpose of the sculptures is not certain, but they may have been religious objects.

The Mixtec culture of central Mexico worshipped many gods, one known as Piltzintecuhtli, or 7 Flower (his name presented in the pictoral language as seven circles and a flower) who was the god for hallucinatory plants, especially the divine mushroom. The Vienna Codex (or Codex Vindobonensis) (ca 13th-15th century) depicts the ritual use of mushrooms by the Mixtec gods, showing Piltzintecuhtli and 7 other gods holding mushrooms in their hands.

The Aztec people had a closely related god of sacred psychoactive plants. Xochipilli, Prince of Flowers, was the divine patron of "the flowery dream" as the Aztecs called the ritual hallucinatory trance. The Aztecs used a number of plant hallucinogens including psilocybian mushrooms (teonanácatl), morning glory seeds (tlilitzin), Salvia divinorum, Datura (tlapatl or toloache) , Peyote (peyotl), and mixitl grain. Psilocybian mushrooms were used in ritual and ceremony, served with honey or chocolate at some of their holiest events.

With Cortez's defeat of the Aztecs in 1521, the Europeans began to forbid the use of non-alcohol intoxicants, including sacred mushrooms, and the use of teonanácatl ('wondrous mushroom', or 'flesh of the gods'2) was driven underground.

In the mid 16th century, Spanish priest Bernardino de Sahagún wrote of the use of hallucinogenic mushrooms by the Aztecs in his Florentine Codex :

"The first thing to be eaten at the feast were small black mushrooms that they called nanacatl and bring on drunkenness, hallucinations and even lechery; they ate these before the dawn...with honey; and when they began to feel the effects, they began to dance, some sang and others wept... When the drunkenness of the mushrooms had passed, they spoke with one another of the visions they had seen."

According to Sahagún, the psychoactive mushrooms which were ingested by the Aztec priests and their followers were always referred to as teonanácatl though the term does not appear to be used by modern indians or shamans in mesoamerica. 3 The varieties most likely to have been used by the Aztecs are Psilocybe caerulescens and Psilocybe mexicana. Psilocybe cubensis, which is currently quite popular as it is easy to locate and cultivate, was not introduced to America until the arrival of the Europeans and their cattle.

During the early 20th century there was dispute amongst western academics as to whether psychoactive mushrooms existed. Though Sahagun had mentioned teonanácatl in his diaries, an American botanist William Safford argued he had mistaken dried peyote buttons for mushrooms. This theory was strongly disputed by Austrian amateur botanist Dr. Blas Pablo Reko, who had lived in Mexico. Reko was convinced that not only did teonanacatl refer to psychoactive mushrooms as Sahagun had written, but that people were still using these mushrooms in Mexico.

In the early 30's, Robert Weitlaner, an Australian amateur anthropologist witnessed a Mazatec mushroom ceremony (velada) just northeast of Oaxaca, Mexico. After hearing about the dispute between Safford and Reko, he contacted Reko, told him that the Otomi Indians of Puebla used mushrooms as inebriants, and sent him samples of the mushrooms. Reko forwarded the samples to Stockholm for chemical analysis, and to Harvard for botanical examination, but by the time the samples arrived they were too decayed to be properly identified.

The samples had been received at Harvard by ethnobotanist Richard Evans Schultes. Schultes quickly became a supporter of the idea that Teonanácatl did indeed refer to mushrooms and in the Harvard Botanical Museum Leaflets of April and November 1937 he argued against Safford's conclusions and urged that further work be done to identify the mushrooms. In 1938, Schultes and Reko went to Mexico and after hearing reports of Mazatec veladas near Huautla de Jimenéz northeast Oaxaca and collected specimens of Panaeolus sphinctrinus, which was reported to be the primary psychoactive mushroom used by the Mazatecs. They also collected Psilocybe cubensis, Psilocybe caerulescens, and possibly a few specimens of Psilocybe mexicana,4 all of which were deposited in the Harvard herbarium. While P. sphincrinus was identified as psychoactive, only two analysis have since detected indole alkaloids in the species, while hundreds of other analyses have not detected any activity whatsoever. The mushrooms which were examined were probably a mixed collection labeled as one species.

The investigations of Schultes and Reko came to an end during World War II, and little more was learned until the early 1950's when amateur mycologist R. Gordon Wasson, and his wife Valentina Povlovna, became interested in the traditional use of mushrooms in Mexico. In 1953 Wasson and a small group travelled to Huautla de Jimenéz where they observed an all night ceremony under the guidance of a shaman named Don Aurelio. Two subsequent trips to Mexico led to meeting the Mazatec curandera Maria Sabina who on June 19th 1955 provided Wasson and his companion photographer Allan Richardson with Psilocybe caerulescens during a Velada (mushroom ceremony).

In 1956, Heim requested help from Sandoz Pharmaceuticals (a Swiss company) in extracting the active ingredients of the mushrooms. Albert Hofmann, a research chemist at Sandoz, soon isolated psilocybin and psilocin and developed a synthesis technique. Wasson continued to travel to Oaxaca over the next few years, and with Roger Heim published the first widely distributed article about psychoactive mushrooms and the Mazatec Velada in the May 13, 1957 issue of Life Magazine.

Popular information about the mushrooms soon spread. Experimentation with the mushrooms and the synthesized active substances began and "magic mushrooms"6 were soon part of the psychedelic movement. Through the '60s, mushrooms and their active ingredients were used recreationally, therapeutically, and as a part of new spiritual traditions. In 1968, possession of psilocybin and psilocin became illegal in the United States and in 1970 it was added to the new "Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970", commonly known as the Controlled Substances Act, which came into force in 1971. Research into their medicinal and therapeutic uses continued until 1977.7

Though recreational use continued, research halted through the '80s and '90s due to strict govermental controls, but in recent years, psilocybin and its effect on the human mind has once again become the subject of scientific study.

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kaknelson

Mushrooms and Man

Humanity's use of mushrooms extends back to Paleolithic times. Few people-even

anthropologists-comprehend how influential mushrooms have been in affecting

the course of human evolution. Mushrooms have played pivotal roles in ancient

Greece, India and Mesoamerica. Try to their beguiling nature, fungi have

always elicited deep emotional responses: from adulation by those who

understand them to outright fear by those who do not.

The historical record reveals that mushrooms have been used for less than

benign purposes. Claudius II and Pope Clement VII were both killed by enemies

who poisoned them with deadly Amanitas. Buddha died, according to legend, from

a mushroom that grew underground. Buddha was given the mushroom by a peasant

who believed it to be a delicacy. In ancient verse, that mushroom was linked

to the phrase "pig's foot" but has never been identified. (Although truffles

grow underground and pigs are used to find them, no deadly poisonous species

are known.)

The oldest archeological of mushroom use discovered so far is probably a

Tassili image from a cave which dates back 3,500 years before the birth of

Christ. The artist's intent is clear. Mushrooms with electrified auras are

depicted outlining a dancing shaman. The spiritual interpretation of the image

transcends time and is obvious. No wonder that word "bemushroomed" has evolved

to reflect the devout mushroom lover's state of mind.

In the winter of 1991, hikers in the Italian Alps came across the well

preserved remains of a man who died over 5,300 years ago, approximately 200

years later than the Tassili cave artist. Dubbed the "Iceman" by the news

media, he was well equipped with a knapsack, flint axe, a string of dried

Birch Polypores (Piptoporus betulinus) and another yet unidentified mushroom.

The polypores can be used as tinder for starting fires and as medicine for

treating wounds. Further, a rich tea with immune-enhancing properties can be

prepared by boiling these mushrooms. Equipped for traversing the wilderness,

this intrepid adventurer had discovered the value of the noble polypores. Even

today, this knowledge can be life-saving for anyone astray in the wilderness.

Fear of mushroom poisoning pervades every culture, sometimes reaching phobic

extremes. The term mycophobic describes those individuals and cultures where

fungi are looked upon with fear and loathing. Mycophobic cultures are

epitomized by the English and Irish. In contrast, mycophilic societies can be

found throughout Asia and eastern Europe, especially amongst Polish, Russian

and Italian peoples. These societies have enjoyed a long history of mushroom

use, with as many as a hundred common names to describe the mushroom varieties

they loved.

The use of mushrooms by diverse cultures was intensively studied by an

investment banker named R. Gordon Wasson. His studies concentrated on the use

of mushrooms by Mesoamerican, Russian, English, and Indian cultures. With the

French mycologist, Dr. Roger Heim, Wasson published research on Psilocybe

mushrooms in Mesoamerica, and on Amanita mushrooms in Euro-Asia/Siberia.

Wasson's studies spanned a lifetime marked by a passionate love for fungi. His

publications include: Mushrooms, Russia, & History;The Wondrous

Mushroom;Mycolatry in Mesoamerica;Maria Sabina and her Mazatec Mushroom

Velada;and Persephone's Quest: Entheogens and the Origins of Religion. More

than any other individual of the 20th century, Wasson kindled interest in

ethnomycology to its present state of intense study. Wasson died on Christmas

Day in 1986.

One of Wasson's most provocative findings can be found in Soma: Divine

Mushroom of Immortality (1976) where he postulated that the mysterious SOMA in

the Vedic literature, a red fruit leading to spontaneous enlightenment for

those who ingested it, was actually a mushroom. The Vedic symbolism carefully

disguised its true identity: Amanita muscaria, the hallucinogenic Fly Agaric.

Many cultures portray Amanita muscaria as the archetypal mushroom. Although

some Vedic scholars disagree with his interpretation, Wasson's exhaustive

research still stands. (See Brough (1971) and Wasson (1972)).

Aristotle, Plato, and Sophocles all participated in religious ceremonies at

Eleusis where an unusal temple honored Demeter, the Goddess of Earth. For over

two milennia, thousands of pilgrims journeyed fourteen miles from Athens to

Eleusis, paying the equivalent of a month's wage for the privilege of

attendind the annual ceremony. The pilgrimgs were ritually harassed on their

journed to the temple, apparently in good humor.

Upon arriving at the temple, the gathered in the initiation hall, a great

telestrion. Inside the temple, pilgrims sat in rows that descended step=wise

to a hidden, central chamger from which fungal concoction was served. An odd

feature was an array of columns, beyond any apparent structural need, whose

designed purpose escaped archaeologists. The pilgrims spend the night together

and reportedly came away forever changed. In this pavilion crowded with

pillars, ceremonies occurred, known by historians as the Eleusian Mysteris. No

revelation of the ceremony's secrets could be mentioned under the punishment

of imprisonment or death. These ceremonies continued until repressed in the

early centuries of the Christian era.

In 1977, at a mushroom conference on the Olympic Peninsula, R. Gordon Wasson,

Albert Hofmann, and Carl Ruck first postulated, that the Eleusinian mysteries

centered on the use of psychoactive fungi. Their papers were later published

in a book entitled The Road the Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries

(1978). That Aristotle and other founders of western philosophy undertook such

intellectual adventures, and that this secret ceremony persisted for nearly

2,000 years, underscores the profound impact that fungal rites have had on the

evolution of western consciousness.

Source

Psilocybe Mushroom History

Hallucinogenic mushrooms have been part of human culture as far back as the earliest recorded history. Ancient paintings of mushroom-ed humanoids dating to 5,000 B.C. have been found in caves on the Tassili plateau of Northern Algeria. Central and Southern America cultures built temples to mushroom gods and carved "mushroom stones". These stone carvings in the shape of mushrooms, or in which figures are depicted under the cap of a mushroom, have been dated to as early as 1000-500 B.C. The purpose of the sculptures is not certain, but they may have been religious objects.

The Mixtec culture of central Mexico worshipped many gods, one known as Piltzintecuhtli, or 7 Flower (his name presented in the pictoral language as seven circles and a flower) who was the god for hallucinatory plants, especially the divine mushroom. The Vienna Codex (or Codex Vindobonensis) (ca 13th-15th century) depicts the ritual use of mushrooms by the Mixtec gods, showing Piltzintecuhtli and 7 other gods holding mushrooms in their hands.

The Aztec people had a closely related god of sacred psychoactive plants. Xochipilli, Prince of Flowers, was the divine patron of "the flowery dream" as the Aztecs called the ritual hallucinatory trance. The Aztecs used a number of plant hallucinogens including psilocybian mushrooms (teonanácatl), morning glory seeds (tlilitzin), Salvia divinorum, Datura (tlapatl or toloache) , Peyote (peyotl), and mixitl grain. Psilocybian mushrooms were used in ritual and ceremony, served with honey or chocolate at some of their holiest events.

With Cortez's defeat of the Aztecs in 1521, the Europeans began to forbid the use of non-alcohol intoxicants, including sacred mushrooms, and the use of teonanácatl ('wondrous mushroom', or 'flesh of the gods'2) was driven underground.

In the mid 16th century, Spanish priest Bernardino de Sahagún wrote of the use of hallucinogenic mushrooms by the Aztecs in his Florentine Codex :

"The first thing to be eaten at the feast were small black mushrooms that they called nanacatl and bring on drunkenness, hallucinations and even lechery; they ate these before the dawn...with honey; and when they began to feel the effects, they began to dance, some sang and others wept... When the drunkenness of the mushrooms had passed, they spoke with one another of the visions they had seen."

According to Sahagún, the psychoactive mushrooms which were ingested by the Aztec priests and their followers were always referred to as teonanácatl though the term does not appear to be used by modern indians or shamans in mesoamerica. 3 The varieties most likely to have been used by the Aztecs are Psilocybe caerulescens and Psilocybe mexicana. Psilocybe cubensis, which is currently quite popular as it is easy to locate and cultivate, was not introduced to America until the arrival of the Europeans and their cattle.

During the early 20th century there was dispute amongst western academics as to whether psychoactive mushrooms existed. Though Sahagun had mentioned teonanácatl in his diaries, an American botanist William Safford argued he had mistaken dried peyote buttons for mushrooms. This theory was strongly disputed by Austrian amateur botanist Dr. Blas Pablo Reko, who had lived in Mexico. Reko was convinced that not only did teonanacatl refer to psychoactive mushrooms as Sahagun had written, but that people were still using these mushrooms in Mexico.

In the early 30's, Robert Weitlaner, an Australian amateur anthropologist witnessed a Mazatec mushroom ceremony (velada) just northeast of Oaxaca, Mexico. After hearing about the dispute between Safford and Reko, he contacted Reko, told him that the Otomi Indians of Puebla used mushrooms as inebriants, and sent him samples of the mushrooms. Reko forwarded the samples to Stockholm for chemical analysis, and to Harvard for botanical examination, but by the time the samples arrived they were too decayed to be properly identified.

The samples had been received at Harvard by ethnobotanist Richard Evans Schultes. Schultes quickly became a supporter of the idea that Teonanácatl did indeed refer to mushrooms and in the Harvard Botanical Museum Leaflets of April and November 1937 he argued against Safford's conclusions and urged that further work be done to identify the mushrooms. In 1938, Schultes and Reko went to Mexico and after hearing reports of Mazatec veladas near Huautla de Jimenéz northeast Oaxaca and collected specimens of Panaeolus sphinctrinus, which was reported to be the primary psychoactive mushroom used by the Mazatecs. They also collected Psilocybe cubensis, Psilocybe caerulescens, and possibly a few specimens of Psilocybe mexicana,4 all of which were deposited in the Harvard herbarium. While P. sphincrinus was identified as psychoactive, only two analysis have since detected indole alkaloids in the species, while hundreds of other analyses have not detected any activity whatsoever. The mushrooms which were examined were probably a mixed collection labeled as one species.

The investigations of Schultes and Reko came to an end during World War II, and little more was learned until the early 1950's when amateur mycologist R. Gordon Wasson, and his wife Valentina Povlovna, became interested in the traditional use of mushrooms in Mexico. In 1953 Wasson and a small group travelled to Huautla de Jimenéz where they observed an all night ceremony under the guidance of a shaman named Don Aurelio. Two subsequent trips to Mexico led to meeting the Mazatec curandera Maria Sabina who on June 19th 1955 provided Wasson and his companion photographer Allan Richardson with Psilocybe caerulescens during a Velada (mushroom ceremony).

In 1956, Heim requested help from Sandoz Pharmaceuticals (a Swiss company) in extracting the active ingredients of the mushrooms. Albert Hofmann, a research chemist at Sandoz, soon isolated psilocybin and psilocin and developed a synthesis technique. Wasson continued to travel to Oaxaca over the next few years, and with Roger Heim published the first widely distributed article about psychoactive mushrooms and the Mazatec Velada in the May 13, 1957 issue of Life Magazine.

Popular information about the mushrooms soon spread. Experimentation with the mushrooms and the synthesized active substances began and "magic mushrooms"6 were soon part of the psychedelic movement. Through the '60s, mushrooms and their active ingredients were used recreationally, therapeutically, and as a part of new spiritual traditions. In 1968, possession of psilocybin and psilocin became illegal in the United States and in 1970 it was added to the new "Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970", commonly known as the Controlled Substances Act, which came into force in 1971. Research into their medicinal and therapeutic uses continued until 1977.7

Though recreational use continued, research halted through the '80s and '90s due to strict govermental controls, but in recent years, psilocybin and its effect on the human mind has once again become the subject of scientific study.

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You like your mushrooms huh?

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Dezmond

lol This actually sounds more reliable then that fairytale book titled bible

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Reincarnated
lol This actually sounds more reliable then that fairytale book titled bible
it seriously does. this theory makes a lot more sense than most of the crap people believe in. they hear the word drugs and they think "OMG DRUGS ARE BAD, THEY DONT BENEFIT HUMANS! ALL DRUGS ARE BAD MMMMKAY!". there is only soo much we can know before human ignorance(the result of propoganda) gets in the way. Edited by Reincarnated

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Grandpa Greenman

Thank you, Reincarnated, that was very informative.

Kaknelson was it necessary to quote both those huge posts to make one little comment. Some of us are still on dialup, you know.

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Reincarnated

I tried making a new thread about what I am about to post but a mod deleted it for an unknown reason. Incase the thread is deleted again I am going to post it in here since it is semi-related;

LSD: The Geek's Wonder Drug?

by Ann Harrison, (16 Jan 2006)

Wired News Switzerland

BASEL, Switzerland - When Kevin Herbert has a particularly intractable programming problem, or finds himself pondering a big career decision, he deploys a powerful mind expanding tool -- LSD-25.

"It must be changing something about the internal communication in my brain. Whatever my inner process is that lets me solve problems, it works differently, or maybe different parts of my brain are used, " said Herbert, 42, an early employee of Cisco Systems who says he solved his toughest technical problems while tripping to drum solos by the Grateful Dead -- who were among the many artists inspired by LSD.

"When I'm on LSD and hearing something that's pure rhythm, it takes me to another world and into anther brain state where I've stopped thinking and started knowing," said Herbert who intervened to ban drug testing of technologists at Cisco Systems.

Herbert, who lives in Santa Cruz, California, joined 2,000 researchers, scientists, artists and historians gathered here over the weekend to celebrate the 100th birthday of Albert Hofmann, the Swiss chemist who discovered LSD here in 1938. The centenarian received a congratulatory birthday letter from the Swiss president, roses and a spontaneous kiss from a young woman in the crowd.

In many ways, the conference, LSD: Problem Child and Wonder Drug, an International Symposium on the Occasion of the 100th Birthday of Albert Hofmann, was a scientific coming-out party for the drug Hofmann fathered.

"LSD wanted to tell me something," Hofmann told the gathering Friday. "It gave me an inner joy, an open mindedness, a gratefulness, open eyes and an internal sensitivity for the miracles of creation."

Bent with age but still eloquent, Hofmann said he hoped the symposium would encourage the renewed therapeutic and spiritual use of LSD in supervised settings.

Lysergic acid diethylamide, a derivative of lysergic acid found in the alkaloids of the ergot grain fungus, has been illegal worldwide since the mid-1960s and still generates controversy. The conference was picketed Saturday by a splinter group from Scientology opposed to drug use.

The storied history of LSD as a mind-expanding tool began five years after Hofmann discovered LSD-25, and had what he described as a "peculiar presentiment" compelling him to resynthesize the drug. Without ingesting the substance, Hofmann managed to accidentally absorb enough of the chemical to experience its effects. In a second intentional trip, Hoffman said he had a frightening experience that gave way to feelings of rebirth.

During the 1950s and 1960s, LSD was found to be a promising tool for psychiatry and psychotherapy and was studied by the CIA as a potential interrogation weapon. It was criminalized after it escaped from the lab to be widely embraced by the youth culture.

Hofmannn said millions of people have taken LSD, but some had bad reactions when they took counterfeit drugs. He would like to see a modern Eleusis, the ancient Greek site that held the rituals of Eleusinian Mysteries which took place for two millennia beginning in 1500 BC. During the LSD symposium, mythologist Carl P. Ruck and chemist Peter Webster presented their research suggesting that an ergot preparation was the active ingredient for the Kykeon beverage used during the ritual.

"When Hofmann synthesized the chemical in LSD, he stumbled upon a 4,000-year-old secret," said Ruck, author of Road to Eleusis.

In 1958, Hofmann was the first to isolate the psychoactive substances of psilocybin and psilocin from Mexican magic mushrooms ( psilocybe mexicana ) which were among a variety of sacred plants used around the world to invite ecstatic and spiritual experiences.

The United States Supreme Court is now considering an appeal brought by the New Mexican chapter of the Uniao do Vegetal, or UDV, which uses the outlawed ayahauska brew in its ceremonies and cites the Eleusinian Mysteries as a precedent for a psychoactive Eucharist.

At the symposium, presentations of electronic trance music and psychedelic art by painter Alex Grey encouraged meditative and spiritual reflection for participants -- especially those in altered states of consciousness.

Participants eager to describe their modern-day spiritual LSD experiences were encouraged to contribute to a library of drug experiences on the Erowid website. Earth and Fire Erowid, who operate the site, presented a sampling of comments at the symposium and documented the two to five known deaths that have been associated with LSD.

Geri Beil of Cologne, Germany, who attended the symposium, recalled his own ecstatic LSD experience on an Indian beach on New Year's day, 2000. "I was crying from happiness, so thankful to my parents that they created me," said Beil. "This experience has not disappeared; it has had a lasting effect."

Like Herbert, many scientists and engineers also report heightened states of creativity while using LSD. During a press conference on Friday, Hofmann revealed that he was told by Nobel-prize-winning chemist Kary Mullis that LSD had helped him develop the polymerase chain reaction that helps amplify specific DNA sequences.

"When you study natural science and the miracles of creation, if you don't turn into a mystic you are not a natural scientist," said Hofmann.

In his presentation, artist Alex Grey noted that Nobel-prize-winner Francis Crick, discoverer of the double helical structure of DNA, also told friends he received inspiration for his ideas from LSD, according to news reports.

The gathering included a discussion of how early computer pioneers used LSD for inspiration. Douglas Englebart, the inventor of the mouse, Myron Stolaroff, a former Ampex engineer and LSD researcher who was attending the symposium, and Apple-cofounder Steve Jobs were among them. In the 2005 book What the Dormouse Said, New York Times reporter John Markoff quotes Jobs describing his LSD experience as "one of the two or three most important things he has done in his life."

But the symposium wasn't just a census of LSD-using notables. Attendees included psychotherapists and psychiatrists who discussed research into the therapeutic usefulness of psychedelic drugs.

Dr. Michael Mithoefer presented the preliminary findings of his study in Charleston, South Carolina, which is investigating whether MDMA is effective for treating post-traumatic stress disorder in people traumatized by crime or war.

Harvard University professor, Dr. John Halpern, discussed his proposed study -- now awaiting DEA approval -- using MDMA to treat anxiety in cancer patients.

The Florida-based Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies ( MAPS ) is supporting studies and research in Canada investigating the use of ibogain to treat drug addiction.

And a study at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, supported by the Heffter Research Institute, is investigating whether psilocybin effectively eases the anxiety of terminal cancer patients. Psychiatrist Charles Grob says his research group has located six of the needed 12 subjects and is looking for more participants.

While the data has yet to be analyzed, Grob told seminar participants that all the participants in the study have shown promising reactions, and he applauded the opportunity to share the data in an international gathering.

"It's very encouraging to see such a large number of people, including very knowledgeable people, getting together and sharing a common vision that these compounds have tremendous potential to facilitate healing, especially in areas that do not respond well to conventional treatments," said Grob. "There is global healing in these compounds which have been used for millennia by indigenous people that have much to teach modern man and modern woman."

MAPS founder Rick Doblin says his goal is to make psychedelic medicines into prescription drugs, lamenting that LSD is not yet being studied for therapeutic purposes. "We have been deeply touched by our experiences with psychedelics and it is hard that there is not a single legal study with LSD given to humans anywhere in the world," said Doblin. "We need to bring what is underground and illegal back into a legal context."

But Doblin notes that a group of people who say LSD provides relief from their cluster headaches have organized online and are pushing for a study at Harvard to explore a possible therapy using the drug. If Harvard accepts the MDMA study, Doblin says it could pave the way for the symbolically important return of LSD research at Harvard that halted during the tenure of Timothy Leary. His goal, says Doblin, is to secure an LSD study in time for Hofmann's 101st birthday.

Dr. Andrew Sewell, a psychiatrist and neurologist from the Harvard Medical School who studies alcohol and drug abuse, says most problems with LSD occur when users take an unknown dose they don't feel comfortable with, in an uncontrolled setting, without supervision to shield them from dangerous situations.

"LSD flashbacks are well-confirmed phenomenon but they are relatively rare and don't seem to cause as much trouble as the media would have you believe," said Dr. Sewell at the LSD symposium.

Dr. Sewell says people who have underlying mental disorders should not take LSD because it could make their symptoms worse. "Like any powerful drug, if LSD is used incorrectly it can cause more harm than good," said Dr. Sewell. "LSD is a potentially dangerous drug and should be taken under medical supervision."

"There is no evidence that LSD causes permanent brain damage -- and quite a lot of evidence that it doesn't," said Sewell. "We are lucky that we have over 1,000 papers written in the '50s and '60s when LSD was given to thousands and thousands of research subjects so we have a pretty good idea at this point what it does and does not do."

Asked if the world needs his invention, Hofmann said he hoped that the Basel LSD symposium would help create an appropriate place for LSD in society.

"I think that in human evolution it has never been as necessary to have this substance LSD," said Hofmann. "It is just a tool to turn us into what we are supposed to be."

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