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    Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge (Paperback) By (author) Terence McKenna

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    DescriptionA journey to some of the Earth's most endangered people in the remote Upper Amazon...a look at the rituals of the Bwiti cults of Gabon and Zaire...a field watch on the eating habits of 'stoned' apes and chimpanzees - these adventures are all a part of ethnobotanist Terence McKenna's extraordinary quest to discover the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. He wonders why, as a species, we are so fascinated by altered states of consciousness. Can they reveal something about our origins as human beings and our place in nature? As an odyssey of mind, body and spirit, Food of the Gods is one of the most fascinating and surprising histories of consciousness ever written. And as a daring work of scholarship and exploration, it offers an inspiring vision for individual fulfilment and a humane basis for our interaction which each other and with the natural world. 'Brilliant, provocative, opinionated, poetic and inspiring...Essential reading for anyone who ever wondered why people take drugs.' Rupert Sheldrake.


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  • Full bibliographic data for Food of the Gods

    Title
    Food of the Gods
    Subtitle
    The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Terence McKenna
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 336
    Width: 126 mm
    Height: 198 mm
    Thickness: 25 mm
    Weight: 313 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780712670388
    ISBN 10: 0712670386
    Classifications

    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T10.0
    BIC E4L: REL
    LC subject heading: , ,
    BIC subject category V2: VXA
    LC subject heading:
    BIC subject category V2: JFFH1
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 17400
    BISAC V2.8: POL019000
    LC subject heading:
    Libri: B-638
    DC21: 362.2909
    Thema V1.0: VXA, JBFN
    Illustrations note
    Ill.
    Publisher
    Ebury Press
    Imprint name
    Rider & Co
    Publication date
    06 May 1999
    Publication City/Country
    London
    Review text
    The ethnobotanist co-author of Psilocybin: The Magic Mushroom Grower's Guide (not reviewed) puts forth the theory that magic mushrooms are the original "tree of knowledge" and that the general lack of psychedelic exploration is leading Western society toward eventual collapse or destruction - controversial statements, to say the least, though the argument's details often prove fascinating. In the beginning, McKenna tells us, there were protohumans with small brains and plenty of genetic competition, and what eventually separated the men from the apes was an enthusiasm for the hallucinogenic mushrooms that grew on the feces of local cattle. Claiming that psilocybin in the hominid diet would have enhanced eyesight, sexual enjoyment, and language ability and would have thereby placed the mushroom-eaters in the front lines of genetic evolution - eventually leading to hallucinogen-ingesting shamanistic societies, the ancient Minoan culture, and some Amazonian tribes today - McKenna also asserts that the same drugs are now outlawed in the US because of their corrosive effect on our male-dominated, antispiritual society. Unconsciously craving the vehicles by which our ancestors expanded their imaginations and found meaning in their lives, he says, we feast on feeble substitutes: coffee, sugar, and chocolate, which reinforce competition and aggressiveness; tobacco, which destroys our bodies; alcohol, whose abuse leads to male violence and female degradation; TV, which deadens our senses; and the synthetics - heroin, cocaine and their variations - which leave us victimized by our own addiction. On the other hand, argues McKenna, magic mushrooms, used in a spiritually enlightened, ritual manner, can open the door to greater consciousness and further the course of human evolution - legalization of all drugs therefore is, he says, an urgent necessity. Provocative words - often captivating, but not often convincing. (Kirkus Reviews)