Entheogens and the Development of Culture The Anthropology and Neurobiology of Ecstatic Experience

ISBN-10: 1583946004
ISBN-13: 9781583946008
Edition: 2013
Authors: John Rush
List price: $32.95 Buy it from $7.81
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Description: Mind-altering substances, according to many of the essays in this book, have played a major part not only in cultural development but also in human brain development. Researchers suggest that we purposely enhanced receptor sites in the brain,  More...

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Book details

List price: $32.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: North Atlantic Books
Publication date: 7/30/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 672
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.50" tall
Weight: 1.958
Language: English

Mind-altering substances, according to many of the essays in this book, have played a major part not only in cultural development but also in human brain development. Researchers suggest that we purposely enhanced receptor sites in the brain, especially dopamine and serotonin, through the use of plants and fungi over a long period of time. The trade-off for lowered functioning and potential drug abuse was 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 and fungi were imbibed to still fatigue, pain, or depression, while others were taken to promote hunger and libido. Our ancestors selected for our neural hardware, and 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.Entheogens and the Development of Cultureincludes 15 essays by a wide range of contributors. From the founding president of the American Anthropological Association's Anthropology of Religion section Michael Winkelman, PhD, to Carl A.P. Ruck, PhD, Professor of Classics at Boston University, an authority on the ecstatic rituals of the god Dionysus, to the world-renowned botanist Dr. Gaston Guzma, member of the Colombian National Academy of Sciences and expert on hallucinogenic mushrooms, these writers demonstrate that altering consciousness continues to be an important part of human experience today. Anthropologists, cultural historians, and anyone interested in the effects of mind-altering substances on the human mind and soul will find this book deeply informative and inspiring.

John A. Rush, PhD, ND, is a Professor of Anthropology at Sierra College, Rocklin, California who teaches courses in Physical Anthropology and Magic, Witchcraft and Religion. Dr. Rush’s publications includeClinical Anthropology: An Application of Anthropological Concepts within Clinical Settings(1996),Stress and Emotional Health: Applications of Clinical Anthropology(1999),Spiritual Tattoo: A Cultural History of Tattooing, Piercing, Scarification, Branding, and Implants(2005), andThe Twelve Gates: A Spiritual Passage through the Egyptian Books of the Dead(2007). He is also a Naturopathic Doctor and Medical Hypnotherapist in private practice.

Preface
Mind-Altering Substances, Decision Making, and Culture Building
Altered Consciousness and Drugs in Human Evolution
Cannabis and the Hebrew Bible
Hildegard of Bingen: Unveiling the Secrets of a Medieval High Priestess and Visionary
The Milk of the Goat Hei�run: An Investigation into the Sacramental Use of Psychoactive Milk and Meat
The Significance of Pharmacological and Biological Indicators in Identifying Historical Uses of Amanita muscaria
Enter the Jaguar
Ravens' Bread and Other Manifestations of Fly Agaric in Classical and Biblical Literature
Democracy and the Dionysian Agenda
Virgil's Edible Tables
The Genesis of a Mushroom/Venus Religion in Mesoamerica
Sacred Mushrooms and Man: Diversity and Traditions in the World, with Special Reference to Psilocybe
The Soma Function in Jung's Analytical Psychology
R. Gordon Wasson: The Man, the Legend, the Myth: Beginning a New History of Magic Mushrooms, Ethnomycology, and the Psychedelic Revolution
Index

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