For The Love Of Shrooms

Happy Saturday! I have my first little illustration completed for my woodland pattern:


I have developed a bit of a mushroom obsession over the years and felt compelled to write a bit more than usual about this fascinating life form.

I love Amanita mushrooms…and all mushrooms…but especially the “no no” varieties that have historically aided humans through their medicinal and shamanistic uses.

Although there is debate about the Amanita’s psychoactive range in North America, they definitely have held a special place in our collective human experience as the most cliché, recognizable spotty shroom symbolizing opening doors of perception via wavy tie-dyed trippydom and stoned caterpillars.

Ancient Siberian shamans seemed to have loved this mushroom, using it for for a variety of practical applications such as lucid dreaming, sexy visualization, disease diagnosis, the retrieval of lost souls, demon slaying, future seeing, lost object finding, and general other-worldly perceiving.

Apparently, the effects of the Amanita do not deteriorate through the body’s digestive process, remaining potent in pee. This laced Siberian urine was saved and drunk again and again, and appreciated by those who couldn’t afford to buy their own pre peed shrooms. I would love to try one of the old tincture recipes involving alcohol extraction and experience this mushroom myself. I have also heard they can be delicious when prepared properly.

But please don’t go out and eat them without researching thoroughly…improper preparation and a disrespectful approach might prove to be hard on the body with a nasty hangover, and the somewhat similar looking angel of death mushroom will kill you. BUT I would like to leave you with this profound quote by a research scientist who studied the Amanitas effects through his own ingesting experience:        

“It seemed to me that 100 years would not be sufficient to describe the fullness of experience of a single minute.” - Dr R. Gelpecke