Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Salvia divinorum part II, the awakening.

As an avid gardener, and student of ethnobotany, I grow Salvia divinorum to better understand how this plant interacts with its environment. I have learned that this plant requires cool humid air to thrive, that it is naturally fungal-resistant, and that it does not produce seed. Salvia divinorum is native to the mountains of Oaxaca, Mexico. It is a true-cultigen, in that is does not produce fertile seed, and it was basically invented by horticulturally advanced Mesoamericans some 3,000 to 5,000 years ago. It is like Corn, and many other food crops that have been intensively bred over generations to express highly selective genetic traits at the expense of natural reproduction. These plant species become dependent upon human cultivation for survival.

Salvia divinorum is the only known species in over 900 different species of the Genus, Saliva, that botanically produce the secondary metabolites we call "Salvinorin A and B." Salvinorin A is the primary metabolite responsible for the "hallucinogenic" effects of the leaf matter. The Salvia plant itself uses Salvinorin A as an adaptive advantage, in that many modern botanical studies conclude that Salvinorin A is both anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial, anti-viral. Not surprisingly, the Mazatec people of Oaxaca use Salvia divinorum in prominent medical and divinatory rituals , and these rituals date back to Pre-columbian times.

Salvia divinorum carries the taxonomic species name "Divinorum", not because it is hallucinogenic, but because the ethnobotanists that named the plant found it by studying the divination rites of Mazatec shaman. In the Mazatec sense, Salvia divinorum is a vehicle for healing. In this sense, it is a gift from God, which maybe why the Spanish name for Salvia divinorum is Yerba de Maria, and Yerba de la Pastora (in both meanings, the Herb of Mary, the mother of God).

As an amateur scientist, determined ethnobotanist, and devout seeker of truth, I am deeply sickened at the thought that people in high places (like law enforcement and certain House Representatives) would promote laws that only distort the truth, undermine civil liberty, and ultimately, disregard the U.S. Constitution. Salvia divinorum is an ARTIFACT of pre-Columbian horticulture. This plant has many great potential uses, and ultimately, if some dumb kid want to get off on it, well, it's not the plant's fault... the fault resides with our own ignorance regarding such matters:

This is what happens with a Pre-Columbine divine shamanic plant falls into the hands of a postmodern high tech society with little real connections to the Earth:

The Mazatec shaman uses Salvia divinorum to heal the sick following the rites of many thousand generations of medical plant knowledge. The American teenager uses Salvia to get an out of this world, "I can't believe this is legal" kick:

The fact remains that the "pre-historic" people who invented salvia knew far more about the plant world than modern Americans.

And the fact remains that government censorship undermines the progress of knowledge.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Human Sacrifice

It is 609 A.D. You are in the north Yucatan. You stand at the bottom steps of the Priest's Temple, and await the beginning of the sacred ritual. Behind you, a priest wearing the monstrous mask of the Western Wind God moans an ancient chant about passage to the underworld. Behind the Priest, the Sun dips below the horizon. The Underworld begins to appear through the fog of twilight as millions of points of light come into view.

A Second Priest wearing the mask of the Eastern Wind God approaches you, and wraps your body in the smoking copal of purity. He chants a second song about the passage of the ancestors through the underworld. Then, a third Priest of the Northern Wind God steps in front of you and blows a billowing dust from his hand into your face. Stunned, you inhale the dust. You are terrified...

The three Priests catch you as you fall, and lift you back up to your feet. They lead you to the steps of the Priest's Temple, and loom over you until you begin to walk up. You are unsteady, and losing clarity, but you can still see the nine levels of the pyramid around you. The stairs are lined with the monstrous faces of the divine.

Behind you, the Three Chac Priests sing separate songs in a cacophony of anxious ceremonial music. In the delerium, you remember a song from your childhood:

"The Winds blow, Yet still no water...."

Above you, you see a river of white smoke that crosses the night sky from horizon to horizon.

"The circle is gone, We are wrong..."

The White River churns with swirling eddies and vaporous whirlpools.

"Return the blood, Return Great Corn Father..."

You can see a grey foggy streak down the middle of the White River that empties into a Black Hole. This is the road to the Underworld, the road to the ancestors. It is the road of your dreams.

"And the cycle will be won."

You reach the top steps and hear the song of the Priest of the Eastern Wind God. He greets you as you step onto the grand temple mount. The air is thick with the smoke of burning copal and a scent that you know quite well... the smoldering ashes of bark paper soaked in human blood.

Behind the Priest of the Eastern Wind God, a second figure rises to his knees wearing a giant serpent mask lined with vibrant feathers. His face is paralyzed in a state of ecstatic trance. The King is drawing together the realms of the Earth and the Underworld, thusly preparing a tunnel for your passage into Xibalba.

The Priest of the Eastern Wind God steps before you and spews smoke into your face. You can not resist. You inhale deeply. You will help make the cycle complete.

You look up at the White River in the night sky. The world begins to spin.

The King steps forward, and lifts his royal obsidian blade to your throat. You dare not look at him. You gaze at the White River as the world spins above your head. A twirling, White Road, writhing like a cosmic rope, descends from the Black Hole, and hovers just above your head. Then, in a brilliant flash of light, the Sky Serpent roars out from the Earth beneath you, and swallows you whole. This is your passage to the Underworld.


It is 2004 A.D. You are a seventeen year old kid in the poor suburb of a major city. You try to avoid being in gangs, but that makes you lonely. So, with no money for college and no hope of a good job, you join the Army. This was a very positive, character building experience for you except that now you are lying half dead on some damn street in Baghdad. You are surrounded by your Brothers, who hurry to your side to try and save you. The bomb was too close, though, and you know you're not going to make it. Your cognitive faculties begin to fade, and you try to tell them that everything will be alright... the shot of morphine eases the pain, and you drift away into the freedom of Heaven.


It is 2006 A.D. You didn't mean to kill those girls. You just had too much to drink, lost control, blacked out, and woke up with blood on your hands. You hate yourself. And now, the State is going to kill you.

You are stretched out on a medical bed. The medical technicians tap your veins with three long needles... Three needles for three drugs, the safest constitutional method for killing someone.

You do not fight. You have had seventeen years to face this death. You are fulfilled knowing your death brings Justice.


It is 2007 A.D. The Competition has edged into your market, and you gotta send a message.

You set up the sting. Your partner calls into the Pawn looking for the Acapulco Gold. The meeting location will be at the Bosque Park at 10:00 p.m. You count every minute until the meeting time, but you only pack one bullet. One shot is all you need.

At 10:00 the Pawn shows up. Your Partner gets out from his car and approaches the Pawn. Together, they walk into the park.

You sit in your own car and wait. You count more minutes. Finally, your Partner leaves the park alone and walks to his car. His car starts, and he drives away.

You count more minutes, waiting for the Pawn to reappear. You've thoroughly cleaned and checked your gun by the time the Pawn returns. Spotting your optimum chance, you start your car and casually approach the Pawn as he walks down the sidewalk. you roll down your power windows, and take carefull aim. One shot... Message sent.


It is 2009 A.D. Zealous Fundamentalist are driving fear and panic and turning people into Lethal Enemies. The Supreme Nuclear Weapons of the Sun God are pursued by many zealots for the powers of Security and Wealth. The Wealthy are rich because most are still poor, and the Resources of Life, that being energy, food, water, are beginning to run scarce. It would only be a matter of generations before the powers of the Supreme Nuclear Weapons of the Sun God were unleashed to burn and poison the face of the Earth... in the name of Security.

Monday, January 05, 2009

The Book of Quixotic Council

"In the Beginning, there was nothing.

There was no beginning, there was no end, because time had yet to be dreamed. In the Beginning, there was infinity, and within infinity there was infinite potential. But, within infinite potential, there was also infinite entropy.

Thus, the VOID cooled and rained LIGHT. As Light precipitated from the Void, MATTER condensed from Light to give birth to the Universe.

The Universe is the product of infinity modulated by entropy. Therefore, the Universe carries infinite potential both internally, and externally relative to the Void.

And so it came to pass that the Universe with infinite potential cooled, and settled into galaxies, stars, and planetary systems. Great stars burned and recycled molecular matter, only to fling this new organic carbon-based matter into the far reaches of empty space. Entropy tightened the reins of gravity to further compress matter from energy. On one rocky planet, the third of many in orbit around an average Sun, carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen collected, setting the stage for the existence of LIFE.

Life, like matter, is the product of energy and entropy. In a Universe of infinite potential, it did not take long for molecules capable of reproduction to rise from the ashes of the Big Bang. And so it came to pass that organic molecules constructed of masses of matter could convert sunlight into energy, eat other masses of molecular matter, fold iron-molecules into weapons of death, and invent scientology.

The Nothing did not look at it's creation to admire its existence. It was nothing. So, the bipedal primate-animal called "Man" was called by Entropy one morning to go into the forests of Life and find spirit. Starving and weary from the cold, Man found the Sacred Bread growing on the fecal remains of the Great Meat-Bison. The Man consumed the flesh of the Sacred Bread, and saw visions of the Gods and Great Ancestors proclaiming that all things were made for the purposes of Man. And thus, Nothing became God, Entropy became the Spirits, and Man became a glorified primate-animal.

And so it came to pass that with this gift of "the spirits", Man began to diversify and settle into villages and kingdoms. The world unfolded before him with great new potentials. A rock became gold, a seed became money, and art flourished like the Royal Gardens. The Chief God of Wealth was worshipped across all lands, but the gods of Entropy became angered, and squeezed the kingdoms so that they would war with each other. Thus, great armies were raised to kill and control the descendants of Man.

A thousand generations of war had passed before the descendants of Man created great rocks that would drop from the sky and unleash the power of the Great Sun on all people. This was done in the name of security, and none but the fewest of Man's descendants would survive the burned and poisoned earth. Ten Thousand years would pass before Man would re-awaken, and rebuild his lost world.

During those ten thousand years, a Shaman appeared before a family of human hunter-gatherers. The Shaman was saddened by what he saw. The family was hungry, and alone. The land was poisoned, and struggling to return to life.

"What have you done?" the Shaman asked. The family was gripped in silent fear.

"You know nothing. You should love everything," the Shaman chided. Then, he inhaled, and breathed in all the poisons and ashes of death that oppressed the Earth. Then the Shaman died, and his body vanished into the air. The family could not believe what they saw, but the Earth returned to life anyway..."

(taken from the opening text of "The Book of Quixotic Council" published by the Elite Tribal Council of Pharmaceutically-Assisted Elders, Czichaltlan Albitza, Chile, 1969 A.D.)

Friday, January 02, 2009

the reins of the psyche; the bar of freedom

A brief recollection of history might be helpful in understanding how governments adopt religious movements and then use religious symbolism to manipulate public perspective.

Let's see, Hitler is the primo go-to example, as he embraced local "pagan" and "christian" religions to militarize the nation for war. How he excluded Judaism is beyond me...

Then, there was the Emperor Constantine who, while facing the decline of his nation due to an influx of "christian" cults from the Middle East, daringly declared Christianity to be the religion of the New Rome. This New Roman government still exists, although it doesn't have the power it once had. Back in the day, we had The Dark Ages.

In fact, the governing bodies of the nation of Israel are not different. Back in the day (i.e., the Bible), "The Law" was consistently at odds with "pagan practices." Today, Israel is at war with a people that worship the same God (different name), and share the same sacred ancestral father (Abraham). Judaism and Islam are practically brothers, but it's not in the interest of government to abide this way.

Oh, the list goes on: Communist China and Buddhism, The British versus Hinduism, The Babylonians, the Egyptians, The Zoroastrians... and to just spray pepper spray in the face of religious freedom, the same is true of ALL the New World civilizations too, like the Olmecs, The Maya, and the Aztecs. Sometimes, humans are just... human, even if we don't know it.

Now, one may wonder why "The Law" has always been interested in co-opting religious movements. It's because the human mind is a very powerful, complex, and valuable thing. We are genetically designed to abide by strict social hierarchies, so much so that we rarely become aware of it. In the natural world, this is an adaptation. In the social world, this is an opportunity for individuals to obtain and maintain great social power. As people go, there will always be those seeking more control. Often, they do not see that the only thing they truly have control over is their own mind, and even that is sketchy.

We humans have inhabited Earth for a very long time. What we call history is just a very brief and highly biased account of our time on this living planet. Beyond religion and government, the path to spiritual enlightment is through the forests of knowledge, and in this respect, our ancestors set the bar.