Wade Davis joins Jamie Wheal to share the indigenous practices using plant medicines that are highly relevant to today’s world and are still in use in modern indigenous cultures. There is a long history of psychedelic plant medicines, rituals and shamanic practices. Wade sheds light on the rich history of psychedelics in the Americas and the scientific research that started the ‘psychedelic era.’ In this episode we discuss:
- How psychedelic mushrooms were first discovered and researched by European Americans
- Why humans have an innate drive to access altered states
- Why people in indigenous cultures don’t have a sense of needing to improve themselves
- Vision quests, sundances and initiations
- Understanding the richness of indigenous wisdom & striking a balance with modern life
Tune in to learn more about the psychedelic mushrooms, how they are used in the indigenous cultures and what led to this discovery by the anthropologists back in the day.
Wade Davis is an Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society. Named by the NGS as one of the Explorers for the Millennium, he has been described as “a rare combination of scientist, scholar, poet and passionate defender of all of life’s diversity.” In recent years his work has taken him to East Africa, Borneo, Nepal, Peru, Polynesia, Tibet, Mali, Benin, Togo, New Guinea, Australia, Colombia, Vanuatu, Mongolia and the high Arctic of Nunuvut and Greenland.
An ethnographer, writer, photographer, and filmmaker, Davis holds degrees in anthropology and biology and received his Ph.D. in ethnobotany, all from Harvard University. Mostly through the Harvard Botanical Museum, he spent over three years in the Amazon and Andes as a plant explorer, living among fifteen indigenous groups in eight Latin American nations while making some 6000 botanical collections. His work later took him to Haiti to investigate folk preparations implicated in the creation of zombies, an assignment that led to his writing Passage of Darkness (1988) and The Serpent and the Rainbow (1986), an international best seller later released by Universal as a motion picture.