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In his works, it’s clear that Mc Kenna was a student of many things besides botany and entheogens.He was a renaissance man, capable of lecturing on literature, history, Western and Eastern philosophy, linguistics, anthropology, ecology, shamanism, chemistry, biology.Legalization of marijuana is thus a complex issue, since it involves legitimating a social factor that might ameliorate or even modify ego-dominant values.” “There is no doubt that cannabis is trivialized as a commodity and is degraded by the designation ‘recreational drug,’ but there is also no doubt that when used occasionally in a context of ritual and culturally reinforced expectation of a transformation of consciousness, cannabis is capable of nearly the full spectrum of psychedelic effects associated with hallucinogens.” “It diminishes the power of ego, has a mitigating effect on competitiveness, causes one to question authority, and reinforces the notion of the merely relative importance of social values.” “If every alcoholic were a pothead, if every crack user were a pothead, if every smoker smoked only cannabis, the social consequences of the ‘drug problem’ would be transformed.” On Ayahuasca “The word ayahuasca is a Quechua word that roughly translates as ‘vine of the dead’ or ‘vine of souls.’” “Native peoples of the Amazon region have brilliantly exploited these facts in their search for techniques to access the magical dimensions crucial to shamanism.By combining, in ayahuasca, DMT-containing plants with plants that contain MAO inhibitors, they have long exploited a pharmacological mechanism, MAO inhibition, not described by Western science until the 1950s.” “It’s themes and hallucinations are oriented toward the organic and the natural world, in marked contrast to the titanic, alien, and off-planet motifs that characterize the DMT flash.” “The experience induced by ayahuasca includes extremely rich tapestries of visual hallucination that are particularly susceptible to being ‘driven’ and directed by sound, especially vocally produced sound.” “Ayahuasqueros use sound and suggestion to direct healing energy into parts of the body and unexamined aspects of an individual’s personal history where psychic tension has come to rest.It’s a brave and rare thing to expose idiosyncratic and alienating personal truths. It captures the psychedelic experience in a way that has definitely never been written about in the history of humanity. It will remind you the world is strange and magical. I’ve culled these quotes down to give you a fair picture of the variety of things Mc Kenna thought about.
But he wasn’t ignorant of the addictive nature of heroin and cocaine, modern inventions that need regulation.
It had hundreds of archived talks given by what seemed to be a community of people dedicated to psychedelics, and to a counter-culture movement of sorts. It was like I’d missed out on a grade level or college degree.
He was, and still is, by way of these lectures and his books, one of the most well known psychonauts in recent history (up there with Timothy Leary and Alexander Shulgin).
Without further ado, here is Mc Kenna, organized by topic, sourced mainly from his book, On Cannabis “Cannabis is anathema to the dominator culture because it deconditions or decouples users from accepted values.
Because of its subliminally psychedelic effect, cannabis, when pursued as a lifestyle, places a person in intuitive contact with less goal-oriented and less competitive behavior patterns.