Ayahuasca is a hallucinogenic Amazonian plant mixture that has been used for hundreds, perhaps thousands, of years by native Indian and mestizo shamans in Peru, Colombia, and Ecuador for healing and divination.
Many Western trained physicians and psychologists have acknowledged that this substance can allow access to spiritual dimensions of consciousness, even mystical experiences indistinguishable from classis religious mysticism. In "Sacred Vine of Spirits: Ayahuasca" Ralph Metzner, a pioneer in the study of consciousness, has assembled a group authoritative contributors who provide a exploration of the chemical, biological, psychological and experimental dimensions of ayahuasca.
He begins with the history, psychology and chemistry of ayahuasca from leading scholars in the field of psychoactive research and then presents more than twenty firsthand accounts from Westerners who have used ayahuasca.
He concludes with his own findings on ayahuasca's applications in medicine and psychology and compares the worldview revealed by ayahuasca visions to that of Western cultures.
Metzner brings together a masterful collection of writings exploring the nature of this extraordinary sacred potion, from its chemical and biological properties and psychological effect to its enormous healing and spiritual potential.
This book is edited by Ralph Metzner. He is a psychotherapist and professor at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. Other authors: Dennis J. McKenna, Frank Owings and Raoul Adamson.
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