Hallucinogenic Plants

Old World Hallucinogens

Hallucinogenic Plants

Existing evidence indicates that man in the Old World Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia has made less use of native plants and shrubs for their hallucinogenic properties than has man in the New World. There is little reason to believe that the vegetation of one half of the globe is poorer or richer in species with hallucinogenic properties than the other half. Why, then, should there be such disparity Has man in the Old World simply not discovered many of the native hallucinogenic plants Are...

Mimosa Hostilis Tree

Orange California Poppy Flower Drawing

EFFECTS OF VIROLA SNUFF are felt within minutes from the time of initial use. First there is a feeling of increasing excitability. This is followed by a numbness of the limbs, a twitching of the face, a lack of muscular coordination, nasal discharges, nausea, and, frequently, vomiting. Macropsia - the sensation of seeing things greatly enlarged - is characteristic and enters into Waika beliefs about hekulas, the spirit forces dwelling in the Virola tree and controlling the affairs of man....

New World Hallucinogens

Lycoperdon Mixtecorum

In the New World North, Central, and South America and the West Indies the number and cultural importance of hallucinogens reached amazing heights in the past and in places their role is undiminished. More than ninety species are employed for their intoxicating principles, compared to fewer than a dozen in the Old World. It would not be an exaggeration to say that some of the New World cultures, particularly in Mexico and South America, were practically enslaved by the religious use of...

Chemical Composition

Chemical Substance Plants

Hallucinogens are limited to a small number of types of chemical compounds. All hallucinogens found in plants are organic compounds that is, they contain carbon as an essential part of their structure and were formed in the life processes of vegetable organisms. No inorganic plant constituents, such as minerals, are known to have hallucinogenic effects. Hallucinogenic compounds may be divided conveniently into two broad groups those that contain nitrogen in their structure and those that do...

Hallucinogens In Primitive Societies

Hallucinogens permeate nearly every aspect of life in primitive societies. They play roles in health and sickness, peace and war, home life and travel, hunting and agriculture they affect relations among individuals, villages, and tribes. They are believed to influence life before birth and after death. MEDICAL AND RELIGIOUS USES of hallucinogenic plants are particulaly important in primitive societies. Aboriginal people attribute sickness and health to the working of spirit forces....