How can we come back into right relationship with ourselves and with nature, the baseline reality we are embedded in? How can we know our place in the web of life? Indigenous cultures have a deep understanding and relationship with the aliveness and intelligence of nature. They have been caretakers for psychoactive substances that she secretes that teach us how to engage with nature and the larger cosmos she is part of. They expand minds and heal hearts, as modern psychedelic tests have shown. And yet, the approach to the modern “Psychedelic Renaissance” is to treat these substances like drugs, like other products of Western culture. But these sacred mind-altering substances are there to plug us back into right relationship with the living world.
There's some type of herd mentality and authoritarianism which wants to control global consciousness. It's essentially a hierarchical centralization which is manifested in Patriarchy and this sense of control which we've had for 13,000 years or so. And these (psychedelic) substances, done in the right way, renew our contract with ourselves and with nature.
Current Psychedelic Research Around the World
Nowadays, lots of international organizations support various research on psychedelics and what they can truly do for us. The modern science of psychedelics has helped us reach and change public opinion about these once demonized substances. From “drugs” to tools that can help us heal and reconnect, multiple scientific, international organizations have helped us achieve this: there’s MAPS (the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies) from the U.S., and the Beckley Foundation and Imperial College from the U.K, to name just a few.
There's a lot of money now pouring into exploring psychedelics and their benefits. Johns Hopkins Medical announced recently 17 million dollars worth of funding to form a psychedelic research center for mental disorders. The focus on just mental illness, however, overlooks the other potentials of these substances to connect us back to the web of life, and to help us remember the sacred miracle of life that we are in.
From “ecodelics” or using psychedelics to reconnect to nature, the way we see the world is part of our sickness. So reducing the egoic mind and feeling that connection to the Great Green Womb of Nature may also be one of the ways we get well. And in reweaving that relationship you may face these questions:
- Is the earth alive?
- Does she have a plan to reweave us back into connection through these planetary entheogens?
- What would it feel like to be tangibly part of the web of life?
The Gaia Hypothesis Revisited
GAIA was a term by the Greeks for the goddess of the Earth. The name was also used by ex-NASA engineer and proto-environmentalist James Lovelock in the 1970s, who coined the term “The Gaia Hypothesis” to explain the earth as a closed system and a macro-organism that is alive and self-regulates its being.
All species are extensions of Gaia and feed energy through her for her overall growth. We are embedded in and inseparable from Mother Earth, even as we ravenously consume all her resources to fuel our transformation as a species and perhaps exit from the planet altogether.
I don't think that the purpose of psychedelics is to cure trauma to leave us in a sick culture. I think the purpose of life is to be well, to be happy, to be a part of the plan unfolding and to be living in a sustainable and sacred relationship with the earth.
The Mother Secretes Mind - Altering Entheogens All Over the Planet
You may have heard of the Amazonian brew ayahuasca, or the root bark iboga from Africa, of the peyote buttons of Mexico or psilocybin mushrooms from across the world and so on. It’s trippy in itself to think that the planet literally secretes plants, fungi and creatures that contain psychedelic substances in their structures. And when we consume them (entering into a relationship) they fit the locks of our consciousness like keys to open up staggeringly beautiful, meaningful and powerful dimensions within and without.
It’s almost as if nature wants us to be connected to her information networks, to the mycelial consciousnesses of the fungi, to the plant kingdom and more. It’s like all the different levels of nature – and this used to include us – co-exist, eating and being eaten, feeding energy from simple to complex life forms in the Gaian network. Like She, the Mother, the Planet, is an organism, and we are just one species-strand within her.
If we take a closer look at the ancient and indigenous civilizations that originally used these psychoactive substances, traditionally they did so without separation from their integrated wisdom (as we do when we use them simply as recreational substances). They saw them as “teachers” and trusted the transmissions of information in their psychedelic journeys had something to share.
Ayahuasca – Gaia’s Psychedelic Avatar
When we take a psychoactive substance (and there are many plant-based and earth-based medicines as we call them in a more shamanic paradigm, versus just a recreational drug) – they're not drugs, but medicines. It’s all in the intention of why you take it, and for physical and spiritual wellness.
Let’s take, for example, ayahuasca, one of the predominant psychedelic plants, or “entheogens” that Gaia shares. Ayahuasca has been getting a lot of media attention in the West for the last decade or more. The great medicine of ayahuasca is native to the jungles of South America and it provides a very profound connection to the spirit and the web of life and to your own personal healing. Indigenous peoples of the Amazon have used it perhaps for millennia to heal physically and to connect spiritually.
Ayahuasca is said to be the equivalent to 10 years of therapy in one night, as your subconscious purges up and you may be thrust into an intense visionary journey at the same time. The levels of intelligence in the ayahuasca brew are tangible and the spirit in the plant has been called “madre”, or “the mother”. Some feel that ayahuasca works on behalf of the Great Mother, the planet herself. And as she cleans us out, she is working to a larger plan to bring humans back into the web of life, into connection, and understanding that we’re not alone. Intelligence is everywhere. Consciousness is everywhere. A whole larger world exists if we’d just heal our separation and open to it.
If Gaia is the macro organism then all the species are like strands in her planetary biome. And humans are like the bad bacteria causing sugar cravings – we've gone off and our egos just crave, crave, crave and we're killing the host organism – so, of course, she's going to fight back.
Ecodelics – Psychedelics Can Reconnect You To Nature
There's a great conference in the U.K. called Breaking Convention, which takes place every two years. They explore these nexus points of psychedelics and the medical establishment, culture and the environment and things like that. They had so many great talks over the years, one of them was by Dr. Sam Gandy. He’s a biologist who works with the Beckley Foundation in some of their psychedelic research and he talked on the ecology of nature and psychedelics and this idea of using them as re-sensitizers or “Ecodelics”.
Studies have shown that people that take psychedelics in nature report a feeling of oneness and connection to nature that stays with them for up to a year after their journey. It’s like we have this groove within us that remembers being one with nature and we just have to kickstart it again. This sense of lasting connection steers people to make nature-conscious decisions, to preserve and respect nature in many ways. It’s healthy for them–and the planet!
Ecodelics basically marries the potential of psychedelics with eco-consciousness, exploring this idea that if we re-sensitize ourselves to nature and the relationships with nature through the use of nature's psychoactives we're essentially plugging back into the planetary conversation and we're feeling it again. It's like we're becoming part of it again, like we're welcomed home again.
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Forest Bathing and Hikrodosing
There's a term in Japanese called Shinrin Yoku, which means “forest bathing”. You don’t have to do anything but sit and “bathe” in nature, be still, drink it in. It calms the mind and body, allowing microbes and information transfer that is essential to our wellbeing. There’s also been experiments with low level psychedelics, called “microdosing” while hiking in nature or “hikrodosing”. Essentially, people are remembering how good nature is, and if carefully enhanced on psychedelics that lower the egoic mind, it allows them to reconnect and be nurtured in ways the busy, sterile and stressed city life cannot.
Utilizing Online Psychedelic Communities to Meet Up in Nature and Just BE
There are psychedelic societies that have websites and Facebook groups all across the planet and there are grassroots organizations for integration, that are almost like AA meetings: people come together in sharing circles and they say: “Hi! My name's –––– and I did this psychedelic and oh, my God, here was what was challenging for me…” And then people respond like “I had this happen to me too, here's what I did, here's how I coped, here's how I told my parents I do psychedelics in a controlled safe and legal set and setting, etc.”
I wonder what would happen if there was a global ecodelic day sometime in the summer in which there was a coordinated effort on a grassroots, decentralized scale of all these psychedelic support groups to take their networks out to the forest and hold space for each other in a safe, sacred and sound container, pre-screened for anything that might happen, having a few trained professionals who might be able to do therapy or mediate to make sure that everyone is held in a safe container?
It's not levitating the Pentagon, it's not marching in the streets about the value of psychedelics. It's quietly, passionately and lovingly going home. To the Mother.
Doing that as a collective to whatever degree we can could build up to a coordinated effort across the planet. A Gaian Re-Union. Full circle, back to the Garden.
Number one, we acknowledge there's a problem; number two, we own our part of the problem; number three, we release our trauma and we re-sacralize our relationship so we feel whole again, holy again. Then, from that perspective, we elaborate together on resilience and replenishing and on responding to the planetary emergency. But we can't fix a problem from the consciousness which has created the problem, as Einstein said.
- Nowadays, lots of international organizations support various and interesting researches on psychedelics and what they can truly do for us.
- All species are extensions of Gaia and feed energy through her for her overall growth.
- We need to reconnect to our planet, and one way to do it is by practicing forest bathing or simply by looking to experience psychedelics in nature.
- We can build eco-friendly psychedelic communities where people can share these experiences of union with Mother Earth, while in nature.