(MOBI) Entheogens and the Development of Culture
Entheogens and the Development of Culture
The Anthropology and Neurobiology of Ecstatic Experience
by John A. Rush
- ISBN: 9781583946008 (1583946004)
- Release date: July 30, 2013
- Author: John A. Rush
- Language: english
- Publisher: North Atlantic Books (Berkeley, CA)
- Format: paperback, 672 pages
- Genres: psychology, science
About The Book
Entheogens & the Development of Culture makes the radical proposition that mind-altering substances have played a major part not only in cultural development but also in brain development. Researchers suggest that we have purposely enhanced receptor sites in the brain, especially those for dopamine & serotonin, thru the use of plants & fungi over a long period of time. The trade-off for lowered functioning & potential drug abuse has been more creative thinking — or a leap in consciousness. Experiments in entheogen use led to the development of primitive medicine, in which certain mind-altering plants & fungi were imbibed to still fatigue, pain or depression, while others were taken to promote hunger & libido. Our ancestors selected for our neural hardware. Our propensity for seeking altered forms of consciousness as a survival strategy may be intimately bound to our decision-making processes going back to the dawn of time. 14 essays by a wide range of contributors — including founding president of the American Anthropological Association’s Anthropology of Religion section Michael Winkelman, PhD; Carl A.P. Ruck, PhD, Boston U. professor of classics & an authority on the ecstatic rituals of Dionysus; & renowned botanist Dr Gaston Guzma, member of the Colombian Nat’l Academy of Sciences & expert on hallucinogenic mushrooms — demonstrate that altering consciousness continues to be an important part of experience today. Anthropologists, cultural historians & all interested in the effects of mind-altering substances will find this book informative & inspiring.
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