Breaking Open the Head: A Psychedelic Journey into the Heart of Contemporary Shamanism

By Daniel Pinchbeck

A brilliant paintings of private travelogue and cultural feedback that levels from the primitive to the postmodern in a quest for the promise and which means of the psychedelic experience.

While psychedelics of every kind are demonized in the United States at the present time, the visionary compounds present in vegetation are the religious sacraments of tribal cultures worldwide. From the iboga of the Bwiti in Gabon, to the Mazatecs of Mexico, those vegetation are sacred simply because they wake up the brain to different degrees of awareness--to a holographic imaginative and prescient of the universe.

Breaking Open the Head is a passionate, multilayered, and infrequently rashly own inquiry into this deep department. On one point, Daniel Pinchbeck tells the tale of the encounters among the trendy cognizance of the West and those sacramental elements, together with such thinkers as Allen Ginsberg, Antonin Artaud, Walter Benjamin, and Terence McKenna, and a brand new underground of present-day ethnobotanists, chemists, psychonauts, and philosophers. it's also a scrupulous recording of the author's wide-ranging research with those outlaw compounds, together with a thirty-hour tribal initiation in West Africa; an all-night stumble upon with the grasp shamans of the South American rain woodland; and a file from a psychedelic utopia within the Black Rock wilderness that's the Burning guy Festival.

Breaking Open the Head is courageous participatory journalism at its most sensible, a brilliant account of psychic and highbrow studies that opened doorways within the wall of Western rationalism and accomplished Daniel Pinchbeck's own transformation from a jaded long island journalist to shamanic start up and thankful citizen of the cosmos.

From the Hardcover edition.

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