Ayahuasca Reader: Encounters with the Amazon’s Sacred Vine


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Edited by Luis Eduardo Luna and Steven F. White

From the Publisher: Join dozens of adventurers, anthropologists, artists, shamans, scientists and poets on a journey to remote regions of the Amazon and to the far reaches of the human psyche.

The new, expanded edition of Ayahuasca Reader shares many distinct voices of the global ayahuasca movement: researchers conducting clinical studies on its healing effects, painters depicting the ineffable experience with visionary images, indigenous people carrying the wisdom of ancestral traditions, and the stories of how ayahuasca has opened these individuals to their connection with the natural world and their true selves.

The Ayahuasca Reader is a five-part anthology which shares myths passed down over generations of Amazonian healers, personal testimonies of encounters with Amazonian cultures, a selection of hymns and texts from the religions using ayahuasca as a sacrament, writings from well-known figures in the literary world on the lasting influence of their experience, and a section of transcendental visionary color art to illuminate our understanding of ayahuasca. This comprehensive collection of writings has been expanded and updated, with a new section of ayahuasca inspired art and other resources to draw readers even deeper into the mythic mysteries of the Amazonian brew that has been gaining attention around the world.

The texts chosen for this book contain translations from nearly a dozen languages, representing the voices of many different Amazonian peoples and the diversity of their cultural approaches to working with ayahuasca. The contributors also include legendary scholars of Amazonian plant medicine such as Wade Davis, Dennis McKenna, and Richard Spruce; cultural icons like Allen Ginsberg and Alex Grey; and recognized shamans and spiritual leaders such as Raimundo Irineu Serra, Fernando Payaguaje, and Alberto Prohaño. This new edition also includes essays from prominent visionary figures including Graham Hancock, Jan Kounen, Jeremy Narby, Susana Bustos and others.

The Ayahuasca Reader provides an extensive introduction to plant medicines, Amazonian indigenous cultures, and psychedelic/entheogenic journeys, while also offering in-depth information on the effects and experience of ayahuasca, the cultural context from which its preparation and use has emerged, and its blossoming impact worldwide.

Praise for the Book: “The Ayahuasca Reader explains the necessity of integrating ayahuasca into Western culture, and educated its readers to do their part to facilitate that process.” –Rick Doblin, PhD, Founder & Executive Director of Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies

“A wonderful book of vivid reports, illuminating every aspect of Ayahuasca‘s own world, covering all that matters about these plant spirits and their worldwide impact. If we can accept the help of those whose life work has been to join with the plants and take in the deep truths of our genuine interpenetrated connection with all forms of life, The Ayahuasca Reader will support us in becoming more fully human. This book is a basket of jewels: of experiences, of visions, of miracles and of people like ourselves who have tasted and learned and returned to tell us their stories so we might be more open to our own.” –James Fadiman, PhD, author of The Psychedelic Explorer’s Guide

“An incredibly fascinating anthology of human attempts to express ineffable experiences facilitated by ayahuasca in verbal reports, scientific reflections, poems, songs and art. A rich, interdisciplinary resource for anyone intrigued by the frontiers of consciousness and its exploration.” –William A. Richards, Ph.D., Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, author of Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences

About the Editors: Co-edited by two highly respected and distinguished experts in the field. Luis Eduardo Luna (b. 1947), author of several books, is Director of Wasiwaska, Research Center for the Study of Psychointegrator Plants, Visionary Art and Consciousness, based in Florianópolis, Brazil. Steven F. White(b. 1955), is Professor of Modern Languages at St. Lawrence University, cofounder of its Caribbean and Latin American Studies Program, is a bilingual editor, translator and poet.

ISBN-10: 090779159X   –   ISBN-13: 978-0907791591

Additional information

Weight 32 oz
Dimensions 7 × 1 × 9 in