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

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

by Terence McKenna


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An exploration of humans' symbiotic relationships with plants and chemicals presents information on prehistoric partnership societies, the roles of spices and spirits in the rise of dominator societies; and the politics of tobacco, tea, coffee, opium, and alcohol.

Why, as a species, are humans so fascinated by altered states of consciousness? Can altered states reveal something to us about our origins and our place in nature? In Food of the Gods, ethnobotanist Terence McKenna’s research on man’s ancient relationship with chemicals opens a doorway to the divine, and perhaps a solution for saving our troubled world. McKenna provides a revisionist look at the historical role of drugs in the East and the West, from ancient spice, sugar, and rum trades to marijuana, cocaine, synthetics, and even television—illustrating the human desire for the “food of the gods” and the powerful potential to replace abuse of illegal drugs with a shamanic understanding, insistence on community, reverence for nature, and increased self-awareness.
Praise for Food of the Gods

“Deserves to be the modern classic on mind-altering drugs and hallucinogens.”The Washington Post
“Terence McKenna is the most important—and most entertaining—visionary scholar in America.”—Tom Robbins
“The culture’s foremost spokesperson for the psychedelic experience . . . Those who know and enjoy Joseph Campbell’s work will almost certainly appreciate McKenna.”L.A. Weekly
“An eloquent proposal for recovering something vital—a sense of the sacred, the transcendent, the Absolute—before it’s too late.”—Larry Dossey, M.D., author of Meaning & Medicine, Recovering the Soul, and Space, Time & Machine

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780553371307
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/28/1993
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 31,285
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 8.97(h) x 0.96(d)

About the Author

Terence McKenna, author and explorer, has traveled the world to work and live with shamans. He has added to their shared knowledge of rituals his own efforts to preserve the plants used in these ceremonies. Coauthor of The Invisible Landscape and Psilocybin: The Magic Mushroom Grower’s Guide, Terence mesmerizes his many lecture audiences with tales of science and shamanism. He lives in Occidental, California, and is co-manager of a botanical garden in Hawaii for endangered tropical plants.

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Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge a Radical History of Plants, Drugs, and Human Evolution 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A must read for anyone looking to tie in the beginnings of religious dogma with the expanding primate mind. This book dives head first into the questions of evolution, and mans fascination with altered states of consciousness. Are we truely the loaded ancestors of archiac primates?
meridius on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
An eye-popping history of mind-altering plants.McKenna eloquently advocates a new type of relationship with psychedelics: one of wonder, mystery and discovery. I was profoundly inspired and changed by this book.
raptorrunner on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Just why are cattle so important to humans worldwide? Is it really all about mushrooms?
SquirrelTao on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Terrence McKenna weaves a new kind of story about the human adventure, out of a collection of facts that he has gleaned from his prodigious research into the hidden history of human psychedelic use. He makes a strong case that psychedelic use played a role in the evolution of spiritual consciousness as well as perhaps even human language. He also argues persuasively about the roles that various kinds of drugs and foods have played within societies of the past and present, correlating the chemicals we ingest and have ingested, with apparent changes in our individual and collective consciousness.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book changed both my professional life and private life. It deals with so much complicated content expressed in such simple language, that often times you will have to sit back and ponder in shock what you just learned. From evolution, to consciousness, culture, drug use, to God. Everything is poetically tied together for a wonderful revisionist history tied to "drugs."
guitaoist3 More than 1 year ago
great history lesson.
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