Moderator dreamer042 of the DMT-Nexus elaborates on more sustainable approaches to utilizing psychedelics:
As the global demand for entheogenic medicines grows, we are seeing a simultaneous rise in unsustainable harvesting, poaching, and related ecological damage. The question we, as responsible explorers of expanded consciousness, should be asking is, “What are the hidden costs associated with my personal path of healing through medicine work?” From the cultural and environmental impact of the ever-growing ayahuasca tourism industry in the Amazon, to the ripping up of mature mimosa trees for their root bark in Brazil, to the stripping of protected acacia trees in Australia, to the poaching of iboga to near extinction in Africa, to the destruction of what remains of the ever shrinking North American peyote habitat. It’s time for a radical shift in the way we relate to these sacred plant teachers.
You will often hear people endlessly expounding on the idea that you should never drink ayahuasca without a shaman or that the only way to have an authentic experience is to jet-set halfway around the world and attend a ceremony in Peru or Gabon. There is certainly something to be said for working with a master healer and engaging a medicine in its native habitat, but we often forget the environmental and social impact of these actions. Can we really call such an experience healing if it comes with a giant industrial footprint and hastens the degradation of traditional indigenous practices?
Instead of chasing the authentic experience of other cultures, I would like to propose we take the advice of Terence McKenna and begin to create our own culture. One of the main things you might say that indigenous cultures have in common is that they remain deeply rooted in their landscape. They know the medicine of the plants and the ways of the animals. They continue to sing the songs and tell the stories that animate the world around them and give life to spiritual dimensions. This is a way of being that has largely been lost in the industrialized world, and is rapidly becoming endangered as capitalism encroaches upon what remains of the surviving indigenous traditions. Through a reinfusion of myth back into the landscapes we inhabit and a reconnection to the medicine of our own places, we can begin to forge new traditions and create folk technologies relevant to our current paradigm.
Many of the plants we list as “invasive” contain tryptamine and beta-carboline alkaloids. We need look no further than the nearest water way to find a plethora of potential entheogens, no matter where on the planet we live. There is an endless list of understudied plants to explore; it’s almost as if nature is trying to tell us something with these potentially psychoactive species endlessly proliferating across the landscapes that humans have disturbed. Who knows what wisdom is waiting to be discovered through a simple reconnection with the natural world around us? That is a topic for another article however; the message here is that our own backyards can sustain our personal entheogenic explorations.
You can read the rest on The Nexian.
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