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The Eucharist Was Visionary Plants



Introduction. 1

Justification for presenting this information, with respect to discussion of the true origins of Christianity and the Jesus figure. 2

List of individual items of evidence that the Eucharist was visionary plants. 2

Books and journals containing further items of evidence. 8

Books Representing the Conservative/Anti-Entheogen Paradigm.. 11

Definitions and characterizations of the 3 views of the evidence. 12

The anti-entheogen, Conservative position. 12

The minimalist entheogen theory of religion; the Liberal position: 13

The maximal theory of religion; the Radical position: 13

Commentary about Addressing the Question. 14

Formulating the questions. 14

High-level summary of the proposition and the answers. 15

Gains in Explanatory Power Resulting from Acccepting the Entheogen Hypothesis of Western Religion. 16

Responses to Conservative and Liberal Arguments against the Maximum Entheogen Theory of the Eucharist 19

Misc. Notes. 20

Best past posts in JesusMysteries discussion group containing 'drug', 'mushroom', or 'amanita' 20

My Relationship to the Issue of the Relation of Entheogens and Religion. 21

Theorizing. 22

Outline and Concept for this Page and Posting. 26



Someone asked me for evidence that the Eucharist was visionary plants.  The answer has to provide concise scholarly evidence and arguments, strictly framed as relevant for discussing the true origins of Christianity and the Jesus figure.  


This article or notes page covers:


o  Justification for presenting this information, with respect to discussion of the true origins of Christianity and the Jesus figure.


o  List of individual items of evidence that the Eucharist was visionary plants.  Each item should specify whether ancient, mid-ages, or modern; Christian, Jewish, or Pagan.  Goal is lots of items that are ancient era, Christian, and just a little of the other combinations to establish visionary plants as potentially the norm throughout Jewish and Pagan religious history as well as Christian history, per the maximal entheogen theory of religion.


o  List of books and journals containing further items of evidence.  Each entry should specify chapters or articles that are - whether the resource covers ancient, mid-ages, or modern; Christian, Jewish, or Pagan.  Goal is as above.


o  Definitions and characterizations of the anti-entheogen ('Conservative'), minimal entheogen theory of religion ('Liberal'), and the maximal entheogen theory of religion ('Radical').


Justification for presenting this information, with respect to discussion of the true origins of Christianity and the Jesus figure.


The view that the Eucharist was originally, during the house-church era at least, was normally understood as meaning a mixture including visionary plants, generally correlates with and supports the view that there was no Historical Jesus, because the central presence of visionary plants tends to support an emphasis on mystic metaphor rather than literalism about the original meaning of the Jesus figure.


There have been only a few postings raising the question of the relation between psychoactive plants and the original Christian Eucharist, and none of them have formally put forth a list of evidence or detailed position statements or hypotheses, or presented any sort of serious or sustained focus on the issue. 


Many scholars of early Christian origins are unaware that anyone has proposed any involvement of visionary plants in early Christianity.  Those who are aware of this, too often are only aware of John Allegro's theory, or Wasson's research about Vedic or Central American religious use of visionary plants, or Hofmann's theory of ergot in Eleusis. 


That gives the impression that such theorizing is completely individual and marginal.  There has actually been far more research than just that, forming a growing community of researchers, forming a new entire research paradigm.


This posting brings the seemingly isolated pieces together and summarizes the current state of the research on this subject, so that those who are interested can investigate further, and make an adequately informed decision of whether the subject has much potential relevance to discovering the true origins and rise of Christianity.


List of individual items of evidence that the Eucharist was visionary plants

Each item should specify whether ancient, mid-ages, or modern; Christian, Jewish, or Pagan.  Goal is lots of items that are ancient era, Christian.


Some representative samples of the possible evidence that the Eucharist was visionary plants:


It is possible easily to make wine that produces intense classic religious experiences.  One can *readily* and *easily* produce proof of this.   take modern wine, add cowpie mushrooms into it, if exotic a pinch of henbane cannabis opium, have divine revelations about time, control, self, and will.  No one on earth, not Zaehner or the entire inquisition, can deny this - they can only *spin* it one way or another.  It may be ecstasy of demons or the HS , but it is the hardest concrete fact of science, the very definition of scientific method, the bedrock of chemistry with agelessly old roots.  Do this, experience that, compare notes to confirm. (then censor the notes as profit dictates)


Wine and mixed wine themes are assoc with a *religious* figure, Jesus (& Dionysus), therefore visionary plants more likely than alcohol as the active element in this thing called 'mixed wine'.


Standard polemic of ecstasy/authority, standard contrast of inspiration/drunkenness


Various images of visionary plants in religion throughout eras/regions/groups


Demeter holds out a mushroom in a relief -- shown in:

http://www.dhushara.com/book/diochris/dio1.htm -- Treading the Winepress: Yeshua and Dionysius


http://www.dhushara.com/book/diochris/dio2.htm -- Treading the Winepress: The Epiphany of Miraculous Dread



Christian mushroom-trees (Entheos magazine, James Arthur)


Christian lily Annunciation article in Entheos


Dual mushroom-handled bowl showing Persephone.  Thomas Roberts reports it in a lecture.  He's including it in an article he'll publish.

The New Gutenberg Reformation - Entheogenic Experience as the Basis of Religion

Prof. Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. (Stanford), professor of educational psychology

at Northern Illinois University



This graphic identifies the baby-mummy Virgin Mary in the Dormition icon as amanita-form:

http://www.rutajit.com/Images.htm - scroll down a little to the man holding a wrapped baby

The complete icon online:


from here:



Mark and his lion with Amanita halos with white dots on red edge



Christian Last Supper with the table as an Amanita mushroom, on the cover of Bible Review magazine



Virgin Mary wearing an Amanita cap cap



Bowl of mushrooms and bowl of snails in a mosaic

http://people.etnoteam.it/maiocchi/fabbro.htm -- Mushrooms and Snails in Ancient Liturgy of Early Christians of Aquileia. Franco Fabbro



Amanita Muscarian in the triptych in the healing picture (Apples of Apollo p. 230)

Some this art "much too late" but still why was such std to plug in visionary plants to religion?


Central American phrases for entheogens - Christ's flesh, etc.


Many other pictures of entheogens in Christianity/religions (see books/ journals/ sites)


The close connection of religion and entheogens in late 20th C pop music


Wine centrally prominent in Last Supper as a religious ritual supper & in all Christian *religious* practice; visionary plants more likely than alcohol as relevant factor/element


Various known use of visionary plants in religion throughout eras/regions/groups.


Plato, Ecstasy, and Identity -- Michael Rinella's Dissertation on ecstasy, wine, and inebriants in ancient Greece.  At http://www.egodeath.com/BooksByOtherAuthors.htm find "Rinella".



Ease of matching known entheogenic experiences with myth if myth interpreted as entheogens metaphor

o  The mytheme of eternity matches known visionary-plant effects: exp of suspend sense of time's passage

o  The mytheme of affixion matches the visionary-plant experience of space-time embeddedness

o  The mytheme of unity matches the visionary-plant experience of cosmic unity.

o  The mytheme of death and rebirth matches the visionary-plant experience of death and rebirth.


The entheogen theory of myth-religion makes the formerly unintelligible intelligible at last.

Art portrayals

It enables a theory of magic/supernatural/miracle metaphor, for example, calming the storm by calling for divine help

It solves the problem of "Jesus the magician" and "Jesus falsely predicted the apocalypse".

Intelligibly provides instantly for all the fantastic elements of the New Testament: raising the dead, ascent visions, devil, demon possession and exorcism, ascent to heaven without dying, sacrificing one's firstborn child(-self).  It enables translation that suddenly at once sweep makes sense of hundred of tall tales/supernatural/magic.

ancients had RE on tap; entheogens dirt simple explanation of how

The known, repeatable-on-demand effects of visionary plants match the mythemes.


The Eucharist was the center of Christian practice even in house-church days.


Eucharist like paschal meal ritual in which also mixed wine was prominent


Early house-church Christians *reclined* at banquet with mixed wine -- if the mixed wine was watered-down alcohol, reclining would make less sense than if -- as reported -- unmixed wine is so intense had to be watered.  Their unmixed wine was more intense than our wine; therefore they must have added visionary plants.


Drinking clubs/symposia Dionysus handing the out of control person the thyrssus, and bouncers/horses


Poured wine on tombs -- banquet "in remembrance of the dead", but what did that really mean to them?  It makes no great sense with alcohol, but it makes full sense with death-rebirth-causing visionary plant beverage.


The entheogen model of religion has elegance/coherence breadth of explanatory power.  What about the non-entheogen theory? First, there isn't even one; it is an incoherent mess, chaos -- it is a wreck, it makes no sense.  The contest is between truly a *systemic theory* vs. trainwreckish non-theory or whole patchwork of forced, unconvincing speculations requiring dragging in many dubious/arbitrary, contrived, made-to-order, invented-on-spot assumptions - lots of gaps and fake putty inserted (for example, different ancient psyche was source of religious-myth symbol meanings; ritual imposed highly intense impression on their psyches; were so sober they reluctantly used wine to purify water and strove to avoid effects, yet they talk about this mixed watered down alcohol as still causing divine madness); entheogen theory perfect & seamless.  What argument is there against the entheogen theory of religion?  There aren't any.  There is every reason to suppose, no reason not to. Thus, there is a high probability that the theory or model is correct.


The character of Hellenistic/Christian mystery-religion doesn't sound at all like alcohol, but like visionary plants.  Alcohol conflicts/contradicts the descriptions.


Visionary plants & esotericism have frequently been connected - Wisdom of the Ages, Crowley, etc.


It is not possible to look at entheogens' effects then look at early Christianity & Hellenistic mystery-religions and then say "there is not a clear fit" or "there is definitely not a fit; it contradicts"? (if have reasonable knowledge of entheogens' effects & myth & MR).  in some respects ambiguous; they evidently kept it so, but all makes sense deduced to be such, and there is some direct explicit evidence -- even though still *vertical* early and the entheogen theory of Christianity is only now forming/being defined for 1st time.


The *speed* and *ease* and immediate naturalcy of entheogen theory bodes well, suggestive.  A few months ago I was the first to propose th of myth and esotericism as centrally all about entheogens and determinism (compare today's pop centralizing of "unity", all is one, as the central message -- rather than my centralizing the idea of "all is determined" - like Hellenes).


Same timing of the historical formation of the entheogen theory and the anti-euhemerist heyday in late 20thC (John Allegro, for example)


Role of historical Jesus cause replaceable instantly perfectly with role of visionary plants.  visionary plants demonstrably do exactly what Jesus is said to do: intense experience of the Holy Spirit, regeneration, transformation, new life sense; fixity experience, rebirth experience, end of time, self-sacrifice of one whole version of oneself, -- Jesus as symbol does not cause these claimed experiences; visionary plants do cause all of them.


Anointing can cause intense religious experiencing - anoint compare witches flying in book Claudia Muller-- vs. OT kings


Religion was claimed to involve *intense experience*, not like today's mood of sentimentality in ritual & abstract intellectual "symbol". non-entheogen theories fail to account for provide for intense experiencing -- unlike the entheogen theory.


Sacred eating and drinking is at the center buildup of myth stories.


Water from belly after Amanita has mixed-wine effects (quote the water from belly passage)


Makes clear sense of next cup will be with you in the next age, in the kingdom of god


Causes series like the core Jesus passion sequence: "The next time I drink this wine with you, it will be in the new kingdom, the kingdom of god" -- that is true for each initiate, comparing before and after the main ego death experience each person undergoes during their series of initiations.


Jacob Needleman writes in the book Lost Christianity that an Orthodox monk told him "I could tell you of things a thousand times better than your yoga"; Needleman could not imagine what he could possibly be alluding to. 

Inner Christianity: A Guide to the Esoteric Tradition

Richard Smoley



Richard Smoley writes:

p. 156: "... there is a rich heritage of spiritual techniques and practices in Christianity, though it has often been buried or hidden.  During a visit to the Greek peninsula of Mount Athos, the center of Orthodox monasticism, Jacob Needleman had a monk say to him, "I could tell you of things a thousand times better than your yoga."  But, Needleman adds, "he never said more, not even when pressed by the stunned interpreter."(2)  While we will never know what the monk had in mind, some of the inner practices of Christianity have begun to come to the surface again."

2 - Lost Christianity, p. 36

Lost Christianity: A Journey of Rediscovery to the Center of Christian Experience

Jacob Needleman



Ancient Hellenic texts say wine had to be mixed with 3 to 20 times water or else death, insanity -- that can't possibly be modern wine.


Contemporary coding in lyrics matches type of coding in myth when interpreted accordingly


Controversies centered around leading eucharist, removal of eucharist from women house-church leaders to top-down bishops - bishops made a big point of removing away the eucharist from the populace- if the eucharist was merely symbolism, who cares about having access to it?  If it is entheogenic, the battling makes more sense.


Jesus had a trial or two, on the very night of his betrayal.  This is not plausible historically/literally.  In contrast, it is perfectly plausible as mystic-state metaphorical descriptive report.  Mixed wine at Passover and other sacred *dinners* or Plato symposium throughout the night. 


As reported in Pagels book The Gnostic Paul http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/1563380390 , Valentinian Pneumatics would worship as part of the full large group (we can assume an official church-building), then go off as a small group (we can assume in a house-church) to take the sacrament of redemption (apolytrosis) -- which was something *different* than the food or drink of the common Eucharist and claimed to have superior effects.


Explains much more - Mystery Religions, great amount naturally easily (effortlessly) explained plausibility with small axiom set, where there was no plausible explanation at all before,

integrates perfectly-immediately into whole w/ other comparably alt theories producing not a liability but even greater plausibility of that whole resulting set of alternative theories

agrees with shamanistic knowledge, mythic themes match known experiences, Central American encounter of Christianity & visionary plants (natural to plug in visionary plants into Eucharist), Christian scholarship now pop "shamanism" yet loudly studiously ignore or hasten to diminish the visionary-plant basis of shamanism ("late degeneration from previous methods used by the superior previous shamans")


Enables whole new better theory of myth and of mystery religions and of Hellenistic myth


Enables, as necessary enabler, bringing together a clear and intelligible theory of myth for the first time, and of religion, mysticism, shamanism, determinism/Reformed theology, purgatory intelligibility, battles house-church vs. bishop.


Has no disadvantages (no reason blocking it), and after just 30 yrs of not even trying to substant it, good evidence found -- worst problem with it isn't in its proposal itself, but rather, confusions brought in by HJ paradigm.


Increased Meaning, intelligibility, explanatory power.  It enables huge explanatory power, where there was chaos and separation and puzzlement before.  Eliminates postulating a "primitive psyche" and tortured contrived theories centered on a doubtful principle, based on literalist paradigm; for example, Rene Girard.


Breadth of explanatory power: Other religions, other regions, all also solved this way.


No clear definite alternative competing hypotheses - just puzzlement, fragmentation, chaos, mystified scholars.


Non-entheogen theories forced to suppose that ritual was more impressive to those primitive minds and that symbolism was impressively meaningful


Non-entheogen theories can't explain how compelling intense experience forced upon them if in OSC - have to explain away claims of intense experience: didn't really - pretense; ancients more suggestible; they had intense intellectual understanding of symbols... (cart before the horse, mixing up cause vs. result, which is a symbol and what the referent is); it was all just superstitious and primitive trance that their feeble savage exotic minds were able to work up through ritual/symbol.


Readiness of anti-euhemerist scholars to consider the entheogen theory (Acharya, F&G), & readiness of entheogen scholars to consider anti-euhemerism (Heinrich, James Arthur, Allegro)


Per Irenaeus, Valentinians participate in the communion celebration with the common church, but they reserve the pneumatic eucharistic celebration for private meetings among initiates. Pagels' book Gnostic Paul, p. 74 ( http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/1563380390 ).  The secret Valentinian sacrament of redemption (apolytrosis) is discussed on pages 66-68.


http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JesusMysteries/message/14079 -- 4 Ezra (Latin Apocalypse of Ezra) 14:37-48.  Paraphrased:  I took the five men as the Most High commanded me, and we went forth into the field. A voice called me: Ezra, open thy mouth and drink what I give thee to drink!  I opened my mouth, and there was reached unto me a full cup, which was full as it were with water, but the colour of it was like fire.  I took it and drank; and when I had drunk, my heart poured forth understanding, wisdom grew in my breast, and my spirit retained its memory.  My mouth opened, and was no more shut.  The Most High gave understanding unto the five men, and they wrote what they were dictated in order, in characters which they knew not.  So they sat forty days.  They wrote in the day-time and at night did eat bread.  I spoke in the day, and at night was not silent.  So in 40 days were written ninety-four books. When the forty days were fulfilled, the Most High spake unto me saying: The twenty-four books that thou hast written publish, that the worthy and unworthy may read therein.  But the seventy last thou shalt keep, to deliver them to the wise among thy people.  For in them is the spring of understanding, the fountain of wisdom, and the stream of knowledge. -- Tr. G. H. Box, APOT, vol 2, 1913, pp. 623-4


Even a contemporary Catholic scholar, R. C. Zaehner, and an evangelical fundamentalist, Dave Hunt, don't deny the efficacy of entheogens to produce a state that is at least mystic-like, that can be described as religious experiencing.


Huston Smith argues for the equivalence of mysticism and entheogens - though this is the minimalist entheogen theory/paradigm.


Because most fervently denied/tabood for example Mexico Spanish conquest suppression of mushrooms - obvious who/why what stood to gain/lose by reintroducing active inspiring original reason why eucharist was venerated/central in 1sdt place.  The most taboo thing anyone could propose is that the eucharist is entheogenic - pharmakon of immortality.  How did that proposition become the ultimate taboo?  It was tabooed for reasons of collating exclusive power. 


Look at what happened in 18th-19th Century Central American expectation about eucharist, and resulting disappointment at finding that it was merely a placebo/inactive, their use of visionary plants in eucharist, to this day, look at that natural perfect instant given fit, look then at how Catholic bishops forbade visionary plants and in characteristic fashion disparaged it, and drove it underground; this provides a perfect contemporary recent example of how and why such suppression *originally* occurred when women-led house-churches were co-opted and the women leaders suppressed and the direct ungoverned access to the HS was tried to be suppressed/re-channeled under official power.


General immensity of this particular redefinition, the redefinition of 'wine' - the Death Star core vulnerability effect.  Official Christianity has a vulnerability at the core: they reached agreement that the Eucharist is the ground 0 core of Christian practice and is the means through which united/regenerated.  And they debate this transubstantiation.  This foundational centrality means that how we interpret the eucharist is a move-the-world leverage pivot point of how we interpret all of Christianity.  Everywhere in Christianity is a-meal, everywhere the eating/drinking: *if* this eat/drink is entheogenic, not just symbolic, everything is totally transformed.  This very immensity of potential transformation is itself key evidence to suggest the entheogen theory.   (But note also that poses, end of time, raise the dead, submersion washed in water, sacrifice your firstborn child, etc is redefined; whole 2-layer meaning flip.  the "systemic participation" factor.)


There is a perfectly entheogen-shaped hole right in the dead center of Christianity -- Christian practice, theology, lore, storyline, etc.  So there is a strong case for entheogen use often and centrally throughout Christian history, but what about the specific case of the "original" Christians and the "authors of the canon books"?  Or what about the "oral tradition" prior to those writings?


Hasidic Jews using psychoactives: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99/n973/a06.html?59101 (highly condemnatory and judgmental attitude in this news article)

Relevance: Jewish, in the modern era (1500-2000)


There are mushrooms in the lower portions of the tamborine girl's garments in the "Dionysus Triumphal Procession" mosaic. 



Reported by Brian.

Relevance: Antiquity, Pagan.


Mushroom in Mithras' leg and skirt


I recognized this on May 1, 2004.

For more info, see Mithraism.


Books and journals containing further items of evidence

Each entry should specify chapters or articles that are - whether the resource covers ancient, mid-ages, or modern; Christian, Jewish, or Pagan.


Magic Mushrooms in Religion and Alchemy

Clark Heinrich


Amanita and ergot in various religions and esoteric systems


States we don't know if Jesus existed; theoretically assumes there was.


The Mystery of Manna: The Psychedelic Sacrament of the Bible

Dan Merkur



Jewish use of visionary plants, especially conjectures ergot.


The Psychedelic Sacrament: Manna, Meditation, and Mystical Experience

Dan Merkur


Jewish use of visionary plants, especially conjectures ergot.  Mystics' encoded use of visionary plants.  Pretty clearly implies that visionary plants are basis of mysticism throughout history.


The Apples of Apollo: Pagan and Christian Mysteries of the Eucharist

Carl Ruck


Ch 5 Jesus, the Drug Man [pharmakon of imperishability]


Marijuana: The Burning Bush of Moses

Robert Thorne


More well-read in mysticism than other scholars of the history of entheogens in religion


The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross: A Study of the Nature and Origins of Christianity within the Fertility Cults of the Ancient Near East

John Allegro


No historical Jesus; he was a personification of the mushroom (or, visionary plants).  Linguistic evidence, double-entendres.


Sex, Drugs, Violence and the Bible

Chris Bennett, Neil McQueen


Mostly cannabis, some coverage of visionary plants in general.  Unbalanced toward overemphasis of cannabis, implying the monoplant fallacy, though occasional supplementary notice of other plants.  More likely than his proposed cannabis for anointing is a henbane mixture (I don't think he mentions that).


The Road To Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries

Carl Ruck, Albert Hofmann, R. Gordon Wasson, Jeremy Bigwood, Jonathan Ott, Huston Smith, Danny Staples


Proposes that ergot was transferred from wild grain to cultivated grain, then soaked and filtered with water, to provide the entheogenic kykeon beverage for the Eleusinian mystery-religion.

The discoverer of psilocybin and LSD (Albert Hofmann) believes Eleusis was based around visionary plants.


Mushrooms and Mankind: The Impact of Mushrooms on Human Consciousness and Religion

James Arthur


Visionary plants in Christianity: pages 20-33

It is also available online as the bottom half of:

http://jamesarthur.net/mm_01.html -- Find: Mushroom symbology in popular myth


Shamanism and the Drug Propaganda

Dan Russell


Some coverage of suppression of entheogens in the Christian era.


Antiquity, Paganism

Antiquity, Judaism


R. C. Zaehner

Zen, Drugs and Mysticism


Catholic; diminishes entheogens, but no more severely than it diminishes non-Catholic mysticism.  The forward says he was a "substance abuser", and that he criticized and offended everyone.


Modernity, Christianity


Drugs, mysticism and make-believe

R. C. Zaehner


I haven't seen this.


Modernity, Christianity


The Age of Entheogens

Jonathan Ott


Like McKenna, in his zeal to rush to condemn Catholic suppression of entheogens, he bounds right over the house-church era with its use of the visionary-plant Eucharist.  There is some coverage in the Notes.  Defines eras: The Age of Entheogens, The Pharmacratic Inquisition, and The Entheogenic Reformation. Includes The Angels' Dictionary -- entheogen-aware definitions of religious terms.


Antiquity, Christianity

Middle Ages/Renaissance, Christianity

Modernity, Christianity


The Secret Teachings of All Ages: An Encyclopedic Outline of Masonic, Hermetic, Qabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

Manly Hall


Written in 1925 (age 24), published in 1929.  Hall near page 112 states succinctly that the mystery religions centrally used drugs to induce a visionary state.  He cites S's (Rene Girard) book in 1845 as stating this. 


Robert Graves' 1960 edition of Greek Myths has a prefix stating that he now realizes that the Centaurs represented the use of mushrooms such as Amanita or psilocybin/stropharia cubensis.  Robert Graves in 1958 -- in the essay Food for Centaurs.  You can read the 2-page summary in bookstores now, in the Forward of Volume 1 of the 2-volume set Greek Myths, paperback, by Robert Graves, speculating about mixed wine including amanita or cowpie mushrooms.  The same Forward also appears in the combined volume:



Hellenic Mythicist Karl Kerenyi Was Early Advocate of Entheogen Theory of Greek Myth and Mystery-Religion

Hermes: Guide of Souls

Karl Kerenyi


A preface in this book states that Karl Kerenyi was explicitly an early advocate (1940s?) of the theory that Greek myth and mystery-religion importantly involved visionary plants.  There seems to have been a continuous thread of such postulate -- *not* a point-in-time original creation of the theory, such as the publication date of a book by Clark Heinrich (1995), John Allegro (1970), R. Gordon Wasson (1970), Robert Graves (1958), Manly Hall (1932), or the 19th Century French scholar cited by Manly Hall (~1850).  (Dates approx.)


Entheos journal issues

http://www.entheomedia.org/Issue%20one.htm -- entheogens in Christianity; pictures indicating amanita in Christianity

http://www.entheomedia.org/Entheos_Issue_2.htm -- Annunciation lily as Datura; pictures comparing the two

http://www.entheomedia.org/Entheos_Issue_3.htm -- makes the case for entheogens in Mithraism


From Symposium to Eucharist


Explains 'reclining at table', per house-church era


The Religion of Paul the Apostle


Paul as 'shaman' -- but loudly ignores visionary plants, which Eliade has explained were a late degeneration deviating from the original, pure, traditional methods of shamans, due to later inferior natural capacity of the psyche



Forgotten Truth: The Common Vision of the World's Religions (appendix)

Huston Smith


Also back of Huston Smith's book on perennial philosophy and esotericism

This auth, and the various books with general coverage of visionary plants in religion, is an example of the strong resonance between esotericism, perennial philosophy, religion, and entheogens -- which then provides general plausibility for the specific question of whether many earliest Christians often used visionary plants in and as the eucharist, or for anointing.


Cleansing the Doors of Perception: The Religious Significance of Entheogenic Plants and Chemicals

Huston Smith


Doesn't cover early Christianity but still Christianity vs. entheogens. 


Council on Spiritual Practices


Thomas Roberts' website and collated book gathers entheogen-covering passages from many books on various aspects of religion, mysticism, psychology, and philosophy.


The World of Classical Myth

Ruck & Staples


Doesn't cover Christianity


A Brief History of Drugs

Antonio Escohotado



Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of KnowledgeA Radical History of Plants, Drugs, and Human Evolution

Terence McKenna


Terence McKenna leaps over the Christian era, he so is biased against everything to do with it -- a missed opportunity.  Here is a curious example of an entheogen advocate *not* wanting Christianity to include visionary plants -- because he wants to portray Christianity as darkly as possible by his standards -- and therefore completely missing recognizing the Eucharist as visionary plants.


Ken Wilber's theory of psychospiritual collective evolution fails to integrate visionary plants, calling his general theory of evolution of consciousness into question.


Witchcraft Medicine: Healing Arts, Shamanic Practices, and Forbidden Plants

Claudia Muller-Ebeling, Christian Ratsch, Wolf-Dieter Storl


Sep. 2003

Magical and visionary plants in European and Hellenistic myth and lore.  Women as keepers of knowledge of visionary plants; consider house-churches as women-led

Scholarly and popular audience.  High production standards.  Extensive bibliography.  Pictures of psychoactive plants from art in various eras, evidence that some number of people in Western culture have always known about visionary plants.

Favorable toward the cowpie psilocybin mushroom theory, which McKenna essentially endorses as well.  Graves' forward is specifically for the purpose of making this point, of adding the thesis from the Centaur essay as the introductory frame for his famous previously written Greek Myths book -- showing his high confidence.



Book list about the entheogen theory of the origin of religions; visionary plants in religious history


Contains some additional books not listed above.


Books Representing the Conservative/Anti-Entheogen Paradigm


The Elements of Mysticism

R A Gilbert


Standard objections, in line with the grudging very-minimalist entheogen theory of religion - no, less than that.  flimsy and trivial to refute.  page 73-76.  The section begins:


"Mysticism and mental illness have little in common save that both are even now far from fully understood. The religious use of intoxicants , narcotics and mind-altering drugs has a long and dishonourable history, from the unidentified Soma of the Vedas, through the Bacchhic Mysteries and the hashish-taking of the Assassins, to the peyote-induced visions of the Native American Church.  Whether or not the effects of such drug-taking are comparable to mystical experience is a question that has ... generated vehement debate."


Repeated, now with my comments inserted in square brackets.  "Mysticism and mental illness have little in common save that both are even now far from fully understood. [If they are both far from fully understood, then you have a poor basis for your assertion that the two have little in common.]  The religious use of intoxicants [a charged word, why not inebriants? or visionary plants?], narcotics [a selected charged word] and mind-altering drugs [another selected charged construct] has a long and dishonourable history [why not say "evil and perverted"?] [if it's a long history, doesn't that suggest it's not so dishonorable?], from the unidentified Soma of the Vedas [if Soma is "unidentified", then you have a poor basis for stating it's a drug], through the Bacchhic Mysteries [they sacrificed babies and ate them!] and the hashish-taking of the Assassins [dirty murderous Islamic mystics, with dark skin!], to the peyote-induced visions of the Native American Church [those dishonorable American Indian savages!].  Whether or not the effects of such drug-taking are comparable to mystical experience is a question [he won't even admit that it is possible to even *compare* the two] that has ... generated vehement debate [this author is the epitome of 'vehement', with a negative emphasis; he's projecting his mindset onto the debate of others].



Ancient Mystery Cults

Walter Burkert


He *ends* the book or *concludes* it with diminishment /rebuttal of entheogens -- p. 108-114.  The standard usual arguments.  Interesting how these drug-hypothesis dismissals are often at the start or end of Conservative scholarly books.


Since Burkert lacks an entheogen theory, he has to overemphasize other aspects and try to create a convincing theory of Hellenic religion based on selecting those themes and aspects as the main driving ones instead; the result is forced, artificial theories elaborately drawn but ultimately alien sounding; one can't really imagine how such themes would compel, therefore, we end up having to buy into the implicit-theory of, "those strange, strange, alien ancients".  Elaborate theories of "social doubling taboo" (Rene Girard) are propped up by diligently gathering all the possible evidence for that presumed driving basis; we have to *construct* a hypothetical alien system of reasoning as the basis for our theory/model of their religion and culture-- amounting to artificial like Freud's system that strives to frame sexuality as the true driving force behind psychology and myth.  It's a reductionist, cart-before-horse familiar quality throughout works of theory like Burkert -- sky castles speculatively inventing bases from incidentals, or driving forces from what are actually driven, trying to portray results as causes.


Definitions and characterizations of the 3 views of the evidence

Definitions and characterizations of the anti-entheogen ('Conservative'), minimal entheogen theory of religion ('Liberal'), and the maximal entheogen theory of religion ('Radical').


The 3 main coherent views or attitudes toward entheogens with respect to religion:  We can label these Conservative, Liberal, and Radical, and group these 3 attitudes with the 3 stories of Christian origins and rise, which I have also labeled Conservative, Liberal, and Radical.  For example, the Radical view of Christian origins and rise naturally fits with the Radical view as defined in the scholarly study of the relationship between entheogens and religion.  Generally a scholar who holds the Conservative, Eusebian story of Christian origins, would not hold the Radical theory of entheogens -- that is, the maximal entheogen theory of religion -- but would more likely, literally demonize visionary plants as potent and taboo.


The anti-entheogen, Conservative position


Drugs happen to by unfortunate accident give superficial impression of quasi-, peudo-, mystic-like effects that deceive the unwary, but this is only like comparing our fine mystics to the delusions of the insane.  Visionary plant use is a bad practice of the heathens, a pagan practice. 


Entheogen use in religion or in Christian history is abnormal, unusual, the exception, Romeish, pagan, hedonistic, antinomian, heretical, gnostic, a late degenerate practice [Eliade on shamanism], an importation from outside, unhealthy, primitive in the negative sense, savage, dishonorable (R A Gilbert in _Elements of Mysticism_), later, rare, an outside influence, a later corruption, illegitimate, inauthentic, deviant, dangerous, foreign, alien, a mistake, irrelevant, immoral, madness, priestcraft, a minority practice, marginal, evil insanity, a remnant of corrupted idolatrous Hellenized Judaism, a falling away, apostate, drunken folly, alien, incidental, unimportant, insignificant. 


The authentic, pure, original Christians , the Real Christians, didn't use visionary plants, even though other, outsider groups did.  The legitimacy is vanishingly little; completely illegitimate.  The practice is to be maximally disparaged and marginalized.  Entheogen users in the early Christian era were deviants, heretics, aliens, intruders, exceptions, latecomers, peripheral, or remnants of a previous idolatrous practice.


Generally correlates with the Conservative, supernaturalist, literalist, Eusebian story of Christian origins. 


The minimalist entheogen theory of religion; the Liberal position


The more negative and diminishing view within the minimal entheogen theory of religion: Visionary plants merely give a glimpse and foretaste of authentic traditional mystic experience, and are generally, overall, a negative force against authentic spirituality.  The resulting state really is equivalent to the mystic state in its perceived effects, but results in pride, hubris, and unseriousness, and cannot produce lasting transformation, unlike the traditional methods of accessing the mystic state.


The more positive view within the minimal entheogen theory of religion: Huston Smith provides an annoyingly perfect example, as does the tepid defense of the legitimacy of plants in the book Zig Zag Zen, trying to have it both ways, waffling, incoherent, a carefully fabricated artificial *rhetoric* that gives with one hand while taking away with the other.  Visionary plants give a virtually authentic cheap simulation of the genuine traditional mystic experiencing which was achieved by the venerable traditional means, which we all know and so need no coverage and no argument.


Heap/bury in faint praise, always upholding the vague "traditional mystic techniques" as the true standard, unquestioningly assumed to be non-plant.  The legitimacy of visionary plants is limited: they were legitimately used by some Christian groups which deserve as much as any to be included as 'Christian' -- but that wasn't the main meaning for most groups. 


Generally correlates with the Liberal, non-supernatural, historicist story of Christian origins. 


The maximal theory of religion; the Radical position


Plants are the origin, wellspring, real meaning, main method, et cetera, of which the purported "other, traditional methods" are shams if portrayed as any more than techniques to be used *within* the plant state of consciousness.  Visionary plants were centrally used in all religions, all eras, all regions. 


The real main original meaning of the Eucharist was always from the start and center, emphatically and specifically visionary plants, for example wine with henbane and psilocybin mushrooms -- understood as clear majority of the most important early Christians, quasi-Christians, as well as Jews and Pagans, throughout 1-313 CE.  This entheogen use was rooted securely in both core Jewish practice and core Hellenistic practice such as banqueting. 


Nor was it eliminated or forgotten during the Middle Ages -- as shown by the evidence from art and later mystic-metaphorical mythemes.  The main authentic real meaning of mixed wine was visionary.  Use of entheogens was the main traditional practice and technique for accessing the mystic state; other techniques are intended to be done within the visionary-plant state.


If a scholar of early Christianity got their wish, to participate in early, pure, original Christian worship, they would find themselves reclining at a banquet in a house church drinking wine with plants such as psilocybin mushrooms and henbane mixed in. 


A series of around ten guided, trained, and structured initiation sessions ergonomically provide deep permanent transformation of one's mental worldmodel regarding time, control, self, and will.


Entheogens have been used to a greater or lesser extent in all eras, all regions.  Early Christians used entheogens to a high degree; they were highly integrated into the heart of Christianity as the central intended meaning of the Eucharist Jesus drank at night shortly prior to his betrayal, night trial, judgment, sentencing, scourging, crux fastening, and death.  This meaning was intended by most or many of the original Christians most of the time, such that the visionary plants are the real, core, original meaning of the Eucharist.


Generally correlates with the Radical, anti-euhemerist story of Christian origins; no Jesus, no historical Jesus or Paul; Christianity is originally diffuse and multiple, starts largely from Alexandria, is co-opted by Rome such as by the Mithraic Fathers, and arrives last in Jerusalem. 



It is a no-brainer marriage made in heaven, easiest natural fit that practically writes itself, to combine Radical theory of Christian origins w/ entheogen theory of original Christianity.


Commentary about Addressing the Question


What are the main arguments for the view that the original main meaning of Eucharist was visionary plants?

The simple question of "did the early Christians normally use visionary plants?" deserves a simple answer.  It is so early, too soon to provide such.  Modern systematic research has only begun!  I want not to appear or be over ambitious in the response -- but it is an important post, an important response.  We theorists have to have our stuff together on this.  What is our standard proper response now in 4/2004?


What is the correct succinct and maximally compelling 4/04 response per state of the art? How can such interested parties convert themselves?  Has to be a short perfect-length doc, with perfect to-the-point lists of books and pointers to further information.  Simple plain rational case.  Simply look and consider these basic fund considerations: this basic evidence we have at hand.  What is the reasonable person to think?  Which is more reasonable: that the original eucharist wasn't centrally about visionary plants?  (visionary plants)  Or that...  certainly the dominant meaning is visionary plant wine. any historical supposed person has to be reconciled into that.  the visionary plant aspect is the given, the starting point in reading 'wine'.  a study of *meaning* and actual historical exist must be considered on top of that base.

Formulating the questions

Did many of the earliest Christians often use visionary plants as the Eucharist in the agape meal, in the early part of the house-church era?

Did the various early authors of the early versions of the New Testament canonical books often use visionary plants as part of the overall process of authoring and composition?

Did the later Catholicizing, harmonizing redactors of the canon use visionary plants often, as a norm, and consider them to be the intended original meaning of the eucharist?

During the Rome-based government takeover of the house-church synagogue network and gnostic groups, did the Rome-based ruling bishops often preserve the use of visionary plants in the Mass?

How extensively did Hellenistic-era Jewish religions and Pagan religions use visionary plants within mystery-religion, hypercosmic ascent mysticism, magic and witchcraft, philosophy schools, and throughout culture?

How do the conservative-supernatural, liberal-historicist, and radical-mystical interpretive frameworks view the proposition that visionary plants were the wellspring and origin of the specifically religious-experiencing dimension of the earliest Christianities?  How do they view possibly related phenomena such as the agape meals and the experience of the holy spirit and of seeing Jesus after his death?

Why, in the modern era, is equating eucharist, visionary plants, and Jesus taboo and unthinkable?  How could we possibly have gotten from such an original equation to the exact opposite, such strong instinctive denial of the possibility and thinkability of that equation?

How does the visionary-plant theory of the eucharist relate to 2-level metaphor theory, Jesus as king, and alternative Radical theory of Christian origins and rise?


High-level summary of the proposition and the answers

Many of the earliest Christians often used visionary plants as the eucharist in the agape meal, in the early part of the house-church era.

The various early authors of the early versions of the New Testament canonical books often used visionary plants as part of the overall process of authoring and composition -- not while they wrote, but as inspiration for writing.

The later Catholicizing, harmonizing redactors of the canon used visionary plants fairly often, as was the norm in the Hellenistic era, and considered them to be the intended original meaning of the eucharist, but sought to control them as the source of religious authority and social power.

During the Rome-based government takeover of the house-church synagogue network and gnostic groups, the Rome-based and Constantinople-based ruling bishops often preserved the use of visionary plants in the Mass.

The Hellenistic-era Jewish religions and Pagan religions used visionary plants extensively and as the norm within mystery-religion, hypercosmic ascent mysticism, magic and witchcraft, philosophy schools, and throughout culture.

How do the conservative-supernatural, liberal-historicist, and radical-mystical interpretive frameworks view the proposition that visionary plants were the wellspring and origin of the specifically religious-experiencing dimension of the earliest Christianities?  The conservative-supernatural paradigm doesn't consider the visionary-plants theory, but assumes that holy spirit possession is something unintelligible and mysterious to the modern mind; it assumes that the ancients had a different psychology and mindset, as the driving reason for their susceptibility to intense religious experiencing.  The liberal-historicist paradigm tends to explain away the intense religious experiencing itself, supposing that there wasn't actually much intense religious experiencing, but that the reports of it were driven by socio-political factors in the ordinary state of consciousness.

How do the conservative-supernatural, liberal-historicist, and radical-mystical interpretive frameworks view phenomena such as the agape meals and the experience of the holy spirit and of seeing Jesus after his death?

In the modern era, equating eucharist, visionary plants, and Jesus is taboo and unthinkable because during the Enlightenment, the extreme swing toward the posture of rationality, against traditional authority, combined with industrialized alienation from nature, caused the effective loss and forgetting of visionary plants together with the altered state of consciousness and concomitant metaphorical systems of mystic-state double-meaning and puzzle-like, riddle-like tall tales.  This forgetting was made possible partly by the Roman bishops' takeover of the house-church synagogue network and suppression of the often women-led use of visionary plants in the banquet gatherings.  Controlling, suppressing, and profiting from the legacy and venerable authority of visionary plants did not disappear with the fall from power of bishops in the Enlightenment era: in the 20th Century, this identically same pattern re-emerged in the form of prohibition-for-profit.  Today's conflict revolving around visionary plants provides many instructive examples of how to explain the conflict between gnostics and orthodox during the Rome-based house-church takeover of Constantine's era.  The suppression by the Spanish Catholic church in Mexico of the religious use of visionary plants also provides an ideal recent example of the Constantinian strategy of suppression and takeover of the original visionary-plant based eucharist.

The visionary-plant theory of the original eucharist is intimately interwoven with the 2-level theory of metaphorical double-meaning wherein, for example, 'end of time', 'sacrifice of the king', 'exorcism of a demon', 'death and rebirth', and 'imperishable/immortal life', and 'washing through submersion in wavy water' all consistently refer to concrete, standard, common mystic-state experiences.  The entheogen theory goes hand-in-hand with the alternative Radical theory of Christian origins and rise, and with the theory of Jesus as a rewriting of Caesar cult.


Gains in Explanatory Power Resulting from Acccepting the Entheogen Hypothesis of Western Religion

Integrate to form channel again of entheogens with religion.

Solution to freewill/determinism: a different type of determinism, rooted in the mystic experiential/perceptual state.

The situation today: people in fact having religious experiencing but with little integration with religion-philosophy.  Instead of religious experiencing integrated with religion-philosophy, fragmented into Historical Jesus literalism and religious experiencing distorted/limited through literalist filter.

Can we speak of "benefits" of {the entheogen theory + the 'mystic-state description' theory of metaphor + anti-euhemerism theory of Jesus + understanding of frozen-time block-universe determinism}?  The benefits as always, as already defined, remain: a huge leap in ergonomic access to peak religious experiencing climax.  Removes literalism, provides religious experiencing, religious experiencing instantly on tap, and religious experiencing fully connected to religion-philosophy - where religion-philosophy is now transformed. 

Proposed specifics for future practice?  People *already* haltingly combining entheogenic religious experiencing + religion-philosophy; will tighten this up dramatically.  quantum leap in coherence & comprehension.  Full and essentially complete solution to mystery-religions problem/puzzle/mystery/enigma.  Modernity has been as giant group of non-initiates; instantly shifts to giant group of full experiential initiates with modern systematic model/comprehension/theory of 2-layer metaphor.

The entheogen theory *when combined with natural-fitting Radical anti-euhemerist, metaphor theory/parable theory, & determinism, ... entheogen theory is an essential required component -- when this and the other components are pulled together, the result enables solving many major problems/puzzles/enigmas, which *cannot* be solved without entheogen theory -- why is entheogen theory *required* component of {system which solves enigmas}?  Why entheogens and Radical theory of Christian origins *must* be combined/integrated.  Determinism, metaphor, entheogens, and anti-euhemerism.  Whether Jesus and Paul existed isn't ultimately the key point; rather, ability to comprehend metaphor is key. JM discussion group shows didn't exist, but fails to comprehend metaphor.

The "single-component revision" fallacy: not yes/no question of whether Jesus existed; not a yes/no question of were there entheogens in original Christianity; instead, a matter of implied surrounding paradigms; concomitant/consequent/fitting whole *sets* of axioms/premises.  What *set* of axioms/premises is fitting for the axiom that [entheogenic original Christianity]?

The entheogen theory truly works.  What is inadequate in previous work/attempts?  Point to supporting resources: books, webpages, widest known research, state motives/strategies,

The entheogen theory provides a deeply revised model of religion, Christian origins, Holy Spirit, encountering Jesus, and the nature of salvation.

What advantage does this resulting paradigm have over the Conservative or Liberal paradigms of entheogens with respect to religion?  Radical/mystical/entheogenic/deterministic/anti-euhemerist paradigm.  It provides a different understanding, a different experiencing.  Refuse to implicitly endorse by default the received view by treating the entheogen question as if in isolation.  Treat the entheogen issue within its requisite fitting paradigm (anti-euhemerism, Radical criticism, determinism).


Evidence: it has been known since around 1965 the entheogens frequently produce religious experiencing.  Orthodox scholars acknowledge and spin this, they don't dispute this.  They ignore or spin-diminish it, but they don't dispute the raw indisputable, repeatable-on-demand scientific fact.

Evidence: entheogens/ visionary plants in Christian art.

Sacramental meals in mystery-religions

Utter centrality of Eucharist, veneration, sine qua none of Christian practice & theology -- why, if mixed wine is just wine+water? why venerate so artificially, contrivedly, arbitrarily?  makes no particular sense.

Suggestive evidence: when the right key elements are treated as key variables in 2-state systematic meaning-shifting, highly coherent.

How know, what are good reasons that the reasonable person stands on?  We know that entheogens provide direct individual channel of authority and that this was threat to top-down ctrl franchising. explains why keep as much entheogen theme as possible -- everything just makes way more sense this way - while at same time suppressing efficacy of it; carefully neutered.

The "Manna hidden phrases in junk text" theory of Dan Merkur

Constant closeness and adjacency of eating and drinking and religious experiencing.

Fact of inclusion of eating and drinking in every esoteric version of religion

Fact of entheogens portrayed in some early Christian frescos

Fact of Dionysus' Hellenistic 'wine' producing *not* drunkenness effects, but instead, known entheogen effects

Positioning of mixed wine immediately prior to the passion sequence; sequence of drinking mixed wine, betrayal, prayer, trial at night, physical affixion to the material cross, death, rebirth, ascension to the heavens outside the sphere of the fixed stars -- fits a possible likely entheogen experiential sequence

Enables many explanations and connections between formerly puzzling & disconnected themes that scholars have long struggled to make sense of; for example, sabbath flying of witches; enables metaphorical meaning-puzzle solutions left and right.

Is there any paradigm-free, interpretation-free evidence?  There exists no paradigm-free or interpretation-free data.  exists {data x in paradigm A} and {data x in paradigm B}.

Theory of multiple allegory domain combination/interaction/interpenetration.


Flaws with popular idea of "Christianity originally was entheogen based" -- it would assume euhemerist, historical Jesus; mono-plant fallacy, fail to comprehend metaphor; assumes general conventional picture/story of Christian origins, assumes minimalist /rare/unique/special use of visionary plants, has no explanation/connection of crucified king theme with entheogenic experience (Ruck thinks myth means the plants and means a symbolic theme of old-vs.-new -- a half-baked theory) -- grossly inadequate and incomplete, all around; it's but an isolated non-integrated speculation so that even if admitted/affirmed, could not be said to understand its point or any adjacent points; it's but a very crude halting move toward right direction.  The remaining popularity and putting forward of tortured, contrived, theoretical explanations of myth by entheogen scholars suggests that they lack familiarity with the actual effects.  It's impossible to comprehend without constantly reminding oneself of the concrete experienced effects: experience, experience, experience.  The theories fail to be based on *experience* -- on *description* of *intense experience*.  Ruck's theory of Hellenic myth as based on master theme of "old vs. new" is *not* a sound basis in *description of intense experience*.  It's not more relevant than the common ass-backwards mis-identification that "all myth is really about fertility."



Explains notion of mystery-religions as experiential, ascent as experiential, makes revealing sense of pascal as "reenact",

The fact that it enables making sense of so many things *is* one type of strong evidence that forces /compels to accept this conclusion (of the entheogenic basis of original Christianity).

But if you prohibit metaphor theory, this would rob the entheogen theory of much potential to compel theorizing

The more it's integrated -- the fact that it enables, has huge coefficient of enablement for integrating so many theories; McKenna: "it's the *real* missing link".  Evidence: such a tiny axiom results in such huge enablement of massive-scale integration that solves so many master huge enigmas.  no other axiomatic assumption enables anywhere near so many fields to be integrated/solved.  this is the "high coefficient of integration/solution enablement" compelling factor.  Or, "high natural fit in with various other alt components that otherwise wouldn't fit well" -- high systemic fit; high "integration into wholeness" coefficient.

Modern Christians strive to feel and act like early Christians, but where do they get their model of what to imitate?  Shall we explicitly suppose that all the ancient people of all religions all just invented and made up this type of report of religious experiencing -- or did they have easy rich access on demand, to primary intense religious experiencing?  pop Christian scholar theory: faking religious experiencing helped oppressed.  they thus explain away intense religious experiencing.  Today's Pentecostals work hard manufacturing a degenerated imitation of intense religious experiencing or, basically *forcing* oneself to symptoms; it's literally forced, through sheer strength of desire to exhibit symptoms and feel them.  But this is a backdoor approach less ergo than via eucharist.

Is it easily justifiable to make an exception and suppose that the creators of the original versions lacked, what the rest of the tradition played up?  When consider how supernatural/miracle/magic go all the way back, only increasing not decreasing, this definitely suggests increased, not decreased, entheogen use earlier we look.  we have *every reason* to assume and conclude that original authors and everyone around them often used visionary plants, and no good reason to suppose they didn't.  It is easier and more reasonable to assume this, than to adopt the epicycles upon epicycles mixed with "we moderns just have no idea, no clear and distinct hypothesis; those exotics utterly mystify us, and had a different psychology/constitution".

Suppose we theoretically plug in 'entheogen' into the concept of 'Eucharist': does the resulting theology make sense?  What if not -- does that make sense (endless empty debates on transubstantiation/symbol/'ordinary state of consciousness'-ritual).  Eucharist theology makes infinitely more sense under the entheogen assumption than under the "symbol & ritual-only" assumption: making perfect, intensely compelling sense, vs. flat, whatever, abstract mere 'ordinary state of consciousness' symbol "sense".  It explains coherently and substantially the experiential transformation/regeneration themes that otherwise are contrived, flat, arbitrary, made-up, pulled out of nowhere.

Entheogen theory provides fully compelling, simple, rational, coherent explanation of *why* Eucharist came to be the foundation stone of Christianity in the first place and remained so, and why people later were so instantly inclined to plug in visionary plants later (Mexican, Indian, psych, today's book titles) -- it is a natural instant perfect fit made in heaven, next to which the alternative ('ordinary state of consciousness' symbol/ritual only) is confused, puzzling, arbitrary, ungrounded, unjustified, unnatural, forced, artificial, awkward, irrational, and strange.

Putting aside modern inculcated systemic preconceptions, which model or explanatory framework is more beautiful?  It is more elegant and beautiful that the eucharist was always the center of Christianity because it caused loose cognition & then mental re-coagulation (as essentially claimed) -- *not* the proposition that the eucharist was central because it was an intellectually coherent rational symbol of the abstract idea of transformation that was merely *decorated* with artificially added claims and talk of intense transformative religious experiencing.  It is an awkward, unwieldy theory that the talk of experiencing death and rebirth in earliest Christianity was just rational abstract theoretical talk based in the ordinary state of consciousness, or began as arbitrary marketing to which deviants *later* added visionary plants -- so that the original talk of eating body was an arbitrary weird metaphor, later "reinterpreted" by artificially adding visionary plants which by coincidence happened to fit the earlier language of "eating divine flesh".


Evidence for early and often Christian use of visionary plants: [gather/place "coherence/elegance" arguments last, because that is more import than fragmentary items of evidence, no matter how smoking-gun those fragments are]


The gospel was written and styled and intended to be plausible/possible in quasi-historical fashion.  but why would a particular person carry out such a mythically meaningful act?  it sounds more like an archetype than a real person.  Even if some individual carried out the Jesus story events, the saving efficacy is not thru that physical person and action, but rather in the spiritual realm, so even if there was someone who literally carried out those events, he'd be basically completely irrelevant to the spiritual saving action.


Responses to Conservative and Liberal Arguments against the Maximum Entheogen Theory of the Eucharist


The Radical, maximal entheogen theory of religion paradigm has a ready answer for each objection levied by the two competing paradigms:


"There is no hard evidence entheogens were used in Western religion or early Christianity" - False, there's some evidence for some use by some Christians.


"Archaeology would have tons of hard evidence"; "hard evidence is sparse, proving visionary plants were not popular/normal/common" -- That depends on assumptions: have we looked seriously yet?  was evidence suppressed? was custom to obscure?  has no one bothered to collate evidence we do have? For short length of looking seriously, we have relatively positive evidence.


"We know 'mixed' meant water" - No, this is contradicted by certain ancient writings (citations?) that describe wine as superpotent and causing divine inebriation.


"It says wine, so it was wine" - That depends on assumption of straight meaning, disproved by known custom of double-meaning; and, phrase is more complicated - mixing bowls, mixed wine, unmixed wine.


"The scriptures inveigh against drunkenness" -- If so in spots, is so because high point of contention/rhetoric/polemics.


"Drugs give pleasure so could not have been used by real, authentic Christians." -- That objection depends on the anti-pleasure assumption.


"Entheogens are known to often cause discomfort, not blissful enlightenment, therefore they cannot have been the true historical basis and main method of mysticism" -- That argument just shows ignorant of full span of mystic experiencing: bad & good.


"Old writings don't report such practices" - depends on interpretation and on what citations we gather.  That objection is hard to maintain if well-read in this research field.  It's much easier to levy this argument *before* you have read this here stack of books.  That's the reassurance brought by mere ignorance.


"The only evidence we have requires interpretation of metaphor and poetry." -- That's overstated.  The meaning wasn't *so* obscured; lyrics had to encode but not so deep encode that no one could figure out for sure.


"Visionary plants were a degenerate, late deviance; good earlier pure primitives were better & didn't need that novel crutch" (Eliade) -- That's a modern a priori assumption, to prop up, committed to "we can't und ancient psyche/ritual" paradigm.


"Visionary plants were merely used by gnostic heretics, not real, orthodox Christians" - That assumes primacy of orthodoxy, lately debunked; Christianity was bottom-up house-church heretical/gnostic before Constantine converted Christianity to top-down orthodoxy.


Misc. Notes

Best past posts in JesusMysteries discussion group containing 'drug', 'mushroom', or 'amanita'

Earliest listed first.  This shows that the entheogen theory of original Christianity has not been adequately proposed, considered, argued, or debated in the JesusMysteries discussion group.


A Brief Criticism - Fri 7/5/2002 3:39 PM - Philo Alexandria



Meyer's Ancient Mysteries - Wed 7/10/2002 6:32 PM - Neville Lindsay



Digest Number 671 - Wed 7/17/2002 5:44 PM - hypatiab7



John 2 Study - Tue 9/10/2002 7:48 AM - Nick



Cannabis linked to Biblical healing - Tue 1/7/2003 11:25 AM - Djehuti Sundaka


Cannabis linked to Biblical healing - Tue 1/7/2003 6:58 PM - Philo Alexandria


Cannabis linked to Biblical healing - Tue 1/7/2003 8:07 PM - Shivaram


Cannabis linked to Biblical healing - Tue 1/7/2003 8:27 PM - Philo Alexandria


Cannabis linked to Biblical healing - Tue 1/7/2003 9:02 PM - Shivaram



Atoning Messiah Christology - Sat 4/26/2003 12:24 PM - Mike McLafferty



Suetonius & the word "Chrestus" - Tue 5/6/2003 8:52 PM - dhindley



Digest Number 1065 - Wed 5/7/2003 8:09 AM - dhindley



Digest Number 1065 - Wed 5/7/2003 7:02 PM - havrylak



Of Gods and Mushrooms - Sat 7/19/2003 7:49 PM - Philo Alexandria


Of Gods and Mushrooms - Mon 7/21/2003 9:27 AM - dhindley



The Flesh Eaters was Re: From John to Capernaum: Mark 1:14-34 - Tue 8/26/2003 8:35 PM - Jay Raskin



Helms:  Gospel Fictions - Tue 1/13/2004 10:07 AM - johnabrowus


Helms:  Gospel Fictions - Wed 1/14/2004 11:06 PM - Michael Hoffman



Digest Number 1320 (Psychedelics) - Thu 1/15/2004 12:24 PM - cantherius



Mithras artifact - Wed 3/31/2004 10:43 PM - 510046470588-0001


Mithras artifact - Thu 4/1/2004 8:40 PM - havrylak



Redefining Wine - Mon 4/12/2004 12:45 AM - Nigel Chapman


Redefining Wine - Wed 4/21/2004 10:47 PM - Michael Hoffman



Alvin Boyd Kuhn & Tom Harpur - Mon 4/12/2004 7:08 AM - Lowell



Wine and Moly - Tue 4/13/2004 3:30 AM - Stephen


My response, directly answering the questions, was rejected.


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My Relationship to the Issue of the Relation of Entheogens and Religion

My battle is not simply the specific battle against one camp about entheogen in early Christianity -- it's about an entire theory of myth & religion *involves* but transcends the particular debates and ignorances about entheogens.  My ambition is higher than to show that the real original Eucharist was entheogenic.  My ambition is to form the perfect modern scientific theory of transcendent insight -- simply put, I aim to be the Newton of religious theory.  A modern-style super systematizer, ergonomic.  got it all down to a math formula.  readily packaged and reusable, instantly communicable across language/culture barriers.  Wilber's is not that!  He's committed to a theory of collective psychospiritual development in which entheogen is -- he waffles, lacks consistent central theory.  his theory of myth sucks.  Zilch insight on Hellenistic myth -= he doesn't even *have * a theory of Hellenistic myth, that could suck!  Go try to find it , there isn't any, just shards that fall apart -- his huge blind spot, just like McKenna!  You arrive eagerly at this point in his theory-writing history commentary to find only instead -- a vacuum, nothing.  Here is Wilber's commentary on Hellenistic myth: "".  Same with McKenna in Food Gods: just a leap-in-silence over the era entirely.  Heinrich did it right.


I am not primarily a scholar of entheogens in religion, rather, I'm a systematic theorist or model-builder of mystic-state insight; the entheogen is the entryway, covered by the books that argue yes they did use entheogens; but I am not concerned finally and centrally with the method, with the entryway, but rather, with the insights that are commonly encountered within the resulting mental state.  The closest book to my spirit may be Robert Thorne because he's mystically read and centered there.  Entheogen scholars don't strive to theorize beyond the plants to the mythemes -- they are burdened enough making that case that yes visionary plants were used.  I base my theory on top of theirs:  *given* that entheogens were used, turn attention -- like Plotinus -- entirely to the question of meaning and ultimate meaning -- no, the plant itself is not the ultimate meaning.  For example, James Arthur argues that visionary plants were used in religion, but doesn't focus on the metaphysical insights resulting therefrom, though he verbally agrees with my determinism.  Hein at first objected that he does focus on metaphysical meaning not just plants, but on 2nd thought agreed.  So I am fairly alone in focusing on metaphysics/metaphorical mystic double-meaning with plants assumed as a given, a doorway we've passed through. -=- double-meaning that does not just stop at references to the plant itself (as Ruck), but beyond to universal metaphysical mystic-state discoveries about time, will, self, and control.  Ruck is too committed to the theory that the ultimate meaning of Greek myth is "old Hellenic culture vs. new Hellenic culture" -- he misses the more universal mythemes such as can explain one-eyed killer giant.


Timothy Freke remains quite close -- we essentially agree on determinism, visionary plants, metaphor, anti-euhemerist -- i just go further, more systematic model more developed and more universally generalized for all myth-religion.  I bring together these elements more, and more systematically, than he.



Choice/contest is between chaos of forced sep theories resting on doubtful assumpts, or simplicity/summarizable theory.  Myth theorists no agree; entheogen theory of relig even though brand new, has only v minor disagreements.


Check similar arguments in Dan Merkur that mystics used visionary plants.


Have evidence of various kinds, entheogen theory has everything going for it and no substantial argument against it; solves all problems and has only very minor problems itself (why haven't we stumbled into more, more obvious, discussions and portrayals of visionary plants?)


It is more plausible to suppose that early Christianity used visionary plants often, than not, especially when also adopt a concomitant theory of myth, mystery-religion, determinism, mysticism, transcendent knowledge, anti-euhemerism, and the rational explicability of mystic experiencing.


When the top-down ruling bishops (ex-Mithraic Fathers?) removed the Eucharist from the populace, the populace went shopping elsewhere - disapproved/suppressed/brought back in as tithers.  "How can we profit from peoples' innate attraction to the sacrament of transcendence?"  How can we coerce/manipulate people into giving us their funds - play up the superstitious aspects of non-initiates.  Keep people retarded, stunted in the non-initiated mentality, clueless, in the dark, apart from double-entendre sophistication.  Keep the meaning-key from them as much as possible.  lead them on but never hand key over; keep them uninitiated.



Many people have an interested skepticism about entheogens in Christianity, asking questions to find more -- their attitude is like mine toward new chronology: I'm skeptical but interested with questions I wish I had someone to ask.  In this case, I have many answers & solid hypotheses; I know the latest range of theories/speculation.  I can readily explain state of the research in this area.


Continue to differentiate between summary versus in-depth-development.


Best thinkers can argue both sides effectively accurately as committed person within that paradigm would argue - the arguments against entheogens are always totally fake and off-base because they never argue like a true proponent would; never account for the true arguments of the true proponent, so talk past other and fail to actually engage - result like waving sticks rather than actual engage


Warn to correctly und the position and paradigm put forth; engage with what the paradigm actually is, not some cartoon travesty of it or someone else's pop nonsense.  to utter words "gos auths on d" is in spirit to fail to engage with the paradigm.  we really in practice must use this terminology, which best fits with -- when possible, emphasis on Hellenistic expressions.


Ask self how would expert proponent respond to my ??  How would con/lib expert committed proponent argue/refute; what ?'s they'd of course pose?


Start the posting with the summary of the best arguments, bubble the best to top, place details and metatheory arguments below - ok to imply metath above, but keep discuss below as appendix.


Evidence-and-argument/interpretation is needed.  Each argument is also evidence.


Evidence: Around 1880, esotericists were mail-ordering hashish to eat -- concentrated, long-lasting THC inebriation.


Evidence: Lewis Lewin published 1920s Phantastica, covering mescaline, amanita, henbane, datura, and cannabis.


There are hundreds of books that contain some interesting passages about visionary plants in the history of religion.  This posting is not a bibliography, but a starting point where you can find books to read to follow the trails back to primary sources and convert yourself to the visionary-plant theory of religion and the original Eucharist.  The scope of this posting is to define the question requiring research, to just *outline* the proposed answer, to list the books which are most focused on the question of original visionary plant usage in Christianity, and point generally to general lists of books covering the general topic of entheogens in religious history, as well as books with other focuses that contain passages on this subject.


It is a comfortable illusion of being unread in this area to assume that the only book, isolated and marginalized, that we have to deal with is Allegro's, and that the only MR we have to accept visionary plants in is Eleusis.  The entheogen theory has only broken through aboveground recently, is still shaking off the slumber of the liberal, tepid, minimalist entheogen theory of religion, ; the max entheogen theory of religion is brand new, just started -- still just getting started -- has not effectively been proposed yet. 



This book seems promising *somehow*.  Top of now read list.  About scholarly covert/unspoken agendas in comparing early Christianity to pagan relig.

Drudgery Divine

Jonathan Z. Smith




Official religion was an *attempt* to as much as possible control and channel the natural religiousity everywherre availa thru plants.


It is remarkable, the forgetting and incomprehension that hyper-Enlightenment Jefferson consciousness led to and amounted to -- a certain alienation from religious experiencing and visionary plants, but too, *modern* consciousness. even omitting any comprehension of what "king" means.  To USans ("North Americans"), there is no more meaningless word than "king".  modern democracy knows nothing of the *idea* of king.  we've entirely perfectly forgotten it.    politics totally sep from religion - remarkable.  modern egoic consciousness - remarkable. recall however that this was a shift of relation between religion & politics -- *not* the elimination of religion.  was a war over how to fit religion and politics together.  new configuration -- it should have resulted in a more *integrated* visionary plants in American religion & culture & politics.  so undergrounded, huge pressure of masses and everyone -- Limbaugh -- irresistibility of steamroller-like pressure , a force that could only be profitably channeled, never stopped.  Here is a river going on: how can we set up profitable shop here?  how can we viably coerce people into channeling their life-energy into our pockets.


What would you do if you were a ruler over a kingdom filled with cows and people?  harness and channel the given fact of relig inspiration on tap. embody and direct and channel and control it.  kingdom comprises all these people using all these plants for all sorts of ends and visions: how can you as ruler bring this into a form that is controllable, directable, so you have a viable state against its enemies -- whose lands are also filled with mushrooms?


I have returned to that profitable point of saying "what am I trying to accomplish".  Want to craft the most perfect scientific model crystal theory, explicit model/theory more systematic and ergonomic, concise and rapidly communicable than ever before.  The perfect theory of religion or transcendent knowledge: model, system, explanation, summary, no-nonsense, key to all riddles, itself not a riddle.  To demystery-ize mystery, so that only the ultimate mysteries remain, hiddenness of the uncontrollable transcendent controller.



Sheer ignorance is the lamest basis for a position.  Anyone who questions whether wine can produce divine madness can instantly be shown to be simply ignorant.  Shown, proven, and demonstrated by first-hand personal experience and by massive scholarly and scientific evidence, as well as hermeneutic evidence.  The Conservative/modern/supernaturalist view as held in modern era is too ridiculous to bother refuting -- as they'd say about us.  Now it is your turn to pick in this beauty contest.


Is my job to define a theory -- or to defend against attacks of the sheerly ignorant?  sheer ignorance is the least worthy of foes. 


Bernard McGinn

Foundations of Mysticism



If you are unaware, like McGinn, that there exists a way for students of mysticism to have firsthand visionary experiences: what an absurd posture and pretence -- is it worthy  of grave and serious refutation?  Plants reliably cause mystic state experiences.  It is a battle of paradigms.  Plant advocates are the good robot computers stating facts as they are; the make-believe "clueless" establishment pretends , "oh, those aren't mystic experiences, merely degenerate delusions, insanity. no, we don't want to study that."   It's rationality and hard evidence *all* on one side, against spin, spin, spin on the other side. Where does pretence, lying, and ignorance -- where exactly are these boundaries?  Are you informed, but an immoral pretender?  Are you ignorant, or are you lying?


It's like god himself is standing there and telling me "ignore the plants".  God, why are you playing this stupid game?


It's not about scholarly evidence; it's really about power politics, pretense, coercion, channeling power into your pockets.  No wonder the middle ages priests and peoples made a huge joke out of it all, exuberantly profaning their own church.   McGinn and that Establishment hell-bent on publically pretending not to notice entheogens: are you ignorant, deceitful, or a combination of both?  Are you a good informed person forced into compromise against your will? It is rubbish: here are my comments repeated from http://www.egodeath.com/EntheogenDiminishingChristianity.htm --


He writes a fine forward to Gershem Scholem's book but page xi he writes something infuriating -- he in effect is pulling a fast one and writing entheogens out of history; they never existed and they don't exist, in his worldmodel he is trying to establish.

"Students of mysticism -- as distinct from mystics themselves -- have no direct access to such a form of experience."

On the Kabbalah and Its Symbolism

Gershom Scholem




The reasons against the entheogen theory are *psychological* , not rational/evidential.  People have a psychological commitment to a preassumed view utterly modern, utterly ignorant of visionary plants.  Only in a society so alienated from visionary plants and ... in which modern rationalistic stiff trying to look stiff as possible, trying to appear as anti-religion as possible -- gave rise to this bizarre pocket of seemingly willful ignorance and self-deceit about the *obvious* mystic nature of plants.  The answer to this histor5ical puzzle of ignorance in the modern era -- look at 1750 Enlightenment, battle against battle in church, freemasons -- when *exactly* did such total, deep ignorance of plants come about?




When in did leaders of nations and countries literally *forget* about visionary plants???  Only in modernity, only in modernity could such a bizarre state have arisen.  as though "visionary plants and the religion, which they bring, are too much.  to hell with it.  let us discard the plants and the religion, and set up modern consciousness instead: no plants, no actual religion, but look at the benefits.


Why does god forget about visionary plants?  If god controls all, why battle himself constantly? duality split motive



Constantine and the Establishment of Christianity as the Roman State - side note: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JesusMysteries/message/13797 - after reading this, it's clear Constantine sought to form a single religion amenable to all of his subjects, given their various religions they already had.  A forced, coerced, politically-motivated syncretism incorporating even the theme of rebellion, rebellion specifically in the form of military resistance and apocalyptic messianic rebellion.



It is scientism to assume the model "methodology leads to conclusion" -- that's the foundationalist error; "if only we can pick the right justified axioms, we can then follow them to discover the conclusions".  pretense of a way of avoiding bias.  artificial framing as "following a methodology to a discovered, previously unimagined conclusion".  Methodology is actually made-to-order, fabricated and filled in after the fact, like design spec.


Frame in terms of 3 competing paradigms or 2, explanatory-attempt systems.  "just social posing as religion, there wasn't any real religious experiencing in it."  Magical HS, mysterious, diff psychology back then.  Or, max entheogen theory.


The non-historicity of Jesus is, according to some, not an absolutely certain smoking gun.  Similarly, entheogens in early Christianity is, according to some, not abs certain smoking gun.  But reason can put the various clues and indications together to form a viable complete theory and model that answers a wide sweep of questions with a small set of axioms.


One single fact in isolation: did Jesus exist, or not?  Did early house-church Christians use enth, or not?  The isolated fact and question is a dangling thread that implies or calls into question an entire sweater.


The evidence has all been collected but not sorted and gathered and brought together and interpreted systematically and coherently in an integrated way.  The work of integration remains.


The term 'wine' certainly cannot mean 'wine'.  The term 'mixed wine' certainly did not mean "wine mixed with water" in Hellenistic culture.


Outline and Concept for this Page and Posting


This post summarizes the leading edge of research on the subject.

This provides info and pointers and evidence, a summary and overview of the current state of research and theorizing on the subject of entheogens in early Christian origins and rise.

Cover revisionist Christian origins books' coverage of sacred eating and drinking.  Drews, F&G, Acharya S,

Establish that the Eucharist is the ground 0 center of Christian practice/tradition/etc.

What is to be gained from this line in sand, this milestone?  Accomplishments/ramifications: now that posted, have a way of reading that works insofar as __, theory of myth that works insofar, theory of religious experiencing that.., this enables wide-scale reconfiguration about mystery-religions, myth, metaphor, hermeneutical reading, psychospiritual evolution (Wilber), explains eschatology, exorcism, magic, raising the dead, gaining imperishability, law, elite, relation of ...

Usage map over spacetime, and per person/ per activity.  What would it mean to claim that Christianity based on entheogens as wellspring/origin? that eucharist "meant x" to "the early Christians"?  have to defend assigning this particular theme, mixed wined, as a key 2-state variable, not as a const.

Go into peripheral fitting topics: determinism and transcending it, 3 stages, hypercosmic ascent, mythic-only Jesus and Paul, rationality but also transcendence of rationality of mystic-state experiential insight.  what theories are contradicted, how?  The 'ordinary state of consciousness' fallacy in theory of myth; Eliade's "entheogens as degeneration" fallacy/preconceptions.

How the standard position defined here is different that what anyone's published: different than Jonathan Ott, than Tim Leary, than James Arthur, than Allegro, than Campbell/Carl Jung.

Best-fit explanation.  Prioritize.  What are top 3 takeaway points?

o  We must read metaphor looking for systemic 2-layer flip.

o  Mixed wined with visionary plants was utterly standard.

o  Mixed wine produces the reported effects when myth is interpreted as experiential metaphor.

o  Rhetoric/polemic strategy & results.

o  Evidence does exist for some important extent, plausibly covering "the original writers" as well.

o  *Why* not known; how long was it not known?


Religious prayer was standard in the Hellenistic banqueting club feasts/symposiums.  Joshua as invisible guest at table. 

Metaphor: Jesus walked thru walls, taught, then vanished.

In scriptures, all food means entheogen, all wine.

Why was this knowledge lost, how long was it lost?  How recognize again over years and cultures (Central America example)


What effects are produced; how do these effects match the reported myths/effects?  What does 'mixed wine' mean?  How common was it?

Basically, start by framing the FAQs.  A FAQ approach. (major section)

List the fallacies, as a major section of this page.


Frame in terms of state of today's research on the matter, what are the fallacies in the best of today's research: diminishment tendency, rarity fallacy, prehistory-only fallacy (against entire premodernity).

The presence of entheogens throughout the takeover of house churches by top-down Mithraic bishops -- the problem of co-opting something; want its popularity and essence but take it away from others in order to control it.  For purposes of control, may be best to eliminate the actual genuine article entirely, while yet preserving its popularity and character, its claims, its esteemedness and valuedness, without the thing itself which would give authority outside of the system of control/franchising.  A strategy of throwing dust up to form a covering haze, then takeover & suppression, trying to keep the esteemedness of the eucharist substance as something desired, without ever providing the actual promise, conning instead as though the promise were delivered on, when plainly/manifestly the promise was not delivered on.  Young Carl Jung's formative experience of disappointment upon his inclusion into the Eucharist upon his Confirmation: accepted promise of experiential initiation, but was given just a verbal/ritual ordinary state of consciousness symbolic drawing of it instead.


The summary must be the minimal required to prove that I did fully adequately announce publically the truth of the matter.  It must have keywords/key-phrases implying the full theory.  It must have the search words "hallucinogenic", "psychedelic", "entheogens", drugs, and amanita.  Consider a fresh subject line/new thread, to make it findable.  State that the intent is not to enter a full debate, but rather to post a concise summary of the state of the research, with links for more information for those who are interested -- that I am not going to discuss this here more, unless there is a general demand.  Make it minimal but hard/core-hitting; in a stroke, defining then demolishing the minimal entheogen theory.  In a stroke, integrate metaphor theory, anti-euhemerism, determinism, entheogen theory of religion, ruler cult, Radical story of Christian origins and rise.  In a stroke, leverage the entheogenic nature of the eucharist as the core to transform the whole of Christianity.


Without a systematic theory of entheogens in original Christianity, fragments shot with fallacies remain in place; common view of John Allegro's "lone" book. Some are unaware that other books exist -- and those books are anything but the final word.  Only when read all of them, and modify them, does real understanding and evidence come forth.  For example, liberal historicist assumption fallacy; "Jesus led a mushroom group".

Looking at the issues and interpretations from 3 points of view is most powerful.  This exposes the minimal-entheogen fallacy of the liberal view -- the Zaehner Conservative paradigm, or the Liberal paradigm.

Write the detailed TOC of James Arthur's  book.

Top 10 books on each angle/aspect.

McKenna's strange leap over Christianity era (for example, the house-church era) -- tendency to single out Eleusis, single out JMA, isolate and marginalize.  Blind spots: Ruler Cult, Eucharist as = Eleusis = Mithraic banquet


Evidence against the theory consists of straight reading: "it says, be not drunken".  But on that type of basis, you can read just as well glorification of drunkenness.


Driving difference between ancient and modern is not because they have a mysterious, different, exotic psychology.  If they have a diff psyche, that is an effect due to the actual driving difference, which is the integration of entheogens into philosophy-religion-culture.


What other books actually contribute relevant/peripheral light?  What are ramifications/outcomes as this theory is wider accessed?  How does this theory fit with the Radical theory of j/p/origins/spread/strategy?  show how simple if make appropriate necessary assumptions.  show problems this solves that are unsolved in Conservative/Liberal paradigm.  what are pros/cons of this theory according to con/lib paradigms?  Explain con/lib arguments against this theory: why is it unlikely or undesirable; who stands to gain /lose upon spread of this theory?

Sort of the MTA post - especially since by time it's composed, know all about all other considerations; like this as being final statement.  Lay out a *standard* position/framework/argument/theory.  Systematic/summarized/standardized/defined.  Metatheory, metaphor theory, alt histories, strategy/motive analysis, theory of reading, metaphor as conceptual language, riddle/puzzle/meaning-game, or overloaded language.


How to contribute greatest value in shortest space. Highly abstract explanation and pointers, or more concrete?  has to locally contain compelling content - and point richly.  best concise content, best resources.


Imply and summarize all the best books, warn people away from their fallacies.  It is ironic that the term 'entheogen', which was designed to relate to ancients, distorts actual ancient practice and categories so that we must broaden the term 'entheogen' when applying it to them: 'visionary plants' including for example opium.  Modern categories are more brittle.


The term "drunk" was double entendre polemic strategy. 

The term 'wine' and mixed wine meant visionary plant elixir.

The main type of wine caused not drunkenness, but divine inebriation.

The main books are ...

About the metaphoric mode of reading: ...

Visionary plants were widely known until 1750 ...

The Eucharist is an emphatically, explicitly entheogen-shaped hole at the center of Christianity.

The maximal theory of entheogens: ..

'Wine as wine' makes *no sense* and results in today's state of bafflement and alienation from ancients.  In contrast, the axiom of 'wine means entheogen' enables thousands of pieces to immediately fall into coherent place; all the mystery immediately vanishes. 


-- Michael Hoffman



Draw another goblet

From the cask of '43

Crimson misty memory

Hazy glimpse of me


-- "Bacchus Plateau"


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