From: email@example.com (Bryan Butler) Newsgroups: alt.drugs Subject: Re: Vikings and Mushrooms (long & referenced) Date: 20 May 1993 08:56:37 GMT Message-ID: <1tfh45INNb7@gap.caltech.edu> [ ... ] excerpted from "The Hallucinogens", by A. Hoffer and H. Osmond, Academic, 1967, pp. 443-454, without permission l-Tryptophan is one of the essential amino acids. It is the only indole amino acid but not the only precursor of indoles, since substances derived from tyrosine may also be converted into indoles of another sort. Tryptophan is the potential precursor of the indole alkylamines, that is, compounds which include bufotenine, N,N-dimethyltryptamine, N,N-diethyltryptamine, serotonin, iboga, and harmala alkaloids, psilocybin, LSD, lysergic acid amide, and some yohimbe alkaloids. With the exception of serotonin all these compounds are hallucinogens and serotonin may be a neurohormone. All the compounds listed are found in plants and a few in animals in contrast to the adrenaline matabolite indoles derived from adrenochrome which occur only in animals, so far as we know. ... Cohoba, the Narcotic Snuff of Ancient Haiti Safford (1916) reviewed the ancient and recent history of this narcotic snuff. There remained little doubt it was prepared from _Piptadena peregrina_ and contained chemicals which produced remarkable changes when inhaled or snuffed. ... Fish _et al_ (1955a,b,1956) and Fish and Horning (1956) showed that _P. peregrina_ seeds had 5 indoles. The chief one was bufotenine. Also present were N,N-dimethyltryptamine, bufotenine oxide, N,N-dimethyltryptamine oxide, and an unidentified indole. Jensen and Chen (1936) found bufotenidine in Ch'an Su and in the secretion of _Bufo bufo gargarizans, Bufo fowleri_ and _Bufo formosus_. They found bufotenine in _Bufo vulgaris_ and _Bufo viridis viridis_. Wieland _et al_ (1953) extracted bufotenine from the poisonous mushrooms _Amanita mappa, Amanita muscaria_, and _Amanita pantherina_. Bufotenine was first found in the skin of several toad species and the dried secretion (Ch'an Su) of the Chinese toad has been known to be biologically active for centuries but there are no records of toad skin or its extract being used as hallucinogenic material. This suggests that there is too little bufotenine or that other substances which potentiate the effect of bufotenine are lacking in frog skin. We do not believe that Man has not sampled toad skin. Primitive man has been very adept at selecting those species of plants and animals which contained hallucinogenic compounds. ... The fly-agaric mushrooms are the only other natural source of bufotenine. But they also contain three other main constituents (Buck, 1961). Muscarin which is a parasympathomimetic substance is present. It acts directly on effector organs, smooth muscle, and glandular cells. Atropine prevents most of the effects. Also present in some species of _Amanita_ is a substance called pilzatropin which may be l-hyoscyamine. dl-hyoscyamine is atropine. Finally a pilztoxin is present because even after the muscarine present is prevented from acting by pretreatment with atropine, there remains a psychological effect. Narcoticlike intoxication, convulsions, and death have followed in spite of adequate treatment with atropine. Lewin (1931) described the use of the fly-agaric by the native tribes of North East Asia in Siberia. Lewin discussed briefly the suggestion Berserkers consumed this mushroom to produce their great rages. The fly-agaric was in constant demand and there was a well-established trade between Kamchatka where it did grow to the Taigonos Peninsula where it did not grow at all. The Koryaks paid for them with reindeer and Lewin reported one animal was sometimes exchanged for one mushroom. The Kamchadales and Koryaks consumed from 1 to 3 dried mushrooms. They believed the smaller mushrooms with a large quantity of small warts were more active than the pale red and less spotted ones. Among the Koryaks, their women chewed the dried agaric and rolled the masticated material into small sausages which were swallowed by the men. Lewin does not report whether the women got some of the psychological response. The Siberians discovered the active principle was excreted in the urine and could be passed through the body once more. As soon as the Koryak noted his experience was passing, he would drink his own urine which he had saved for this purpose. The same mushrooms could thus give one person several experiences or several people one experience. After several passages the urine no longer was able to produce the desired effect. The response to the mushrooms varied from person to person and in the same person at different times. The mushrooms varied in potency and sometimes one mushroom was effective; at other times ineffective. The first response occurred in 1 to 2 hours beginning with twitching and trembling. Consciousness was maintained and during this induction phase the subjects were euphoric and contented. Then the visions came on. The subjects spoke to their visionary people and discussed various matters with them. They were quite calm but appeared entranced with a glassy stare. Other subjects became very jolly or sad, jumped about, danced, sang or gave way to great fright. Their pupils were enlarged. Lewin believed this was responsible for the distortions in size which occurred. Small objects appeared much too large. This "deceptive perception is apt to influence his action" ... "on the basis of his illusions the conclusion which he arrives at is very reasonable." In large quantities more severe hallucinations and rages occurred. The initial excitation could become more and more severe leading to attacks of raving madness. In some cases motor excitation was dominant. The eyes became savage, the face bloated and red, the hands trembled and the individual danced or rushed about until exhausted when he apparently slept. But he then experienced more hallucinations. This could then be replaced by another spasm of overactivity followed by more hallucinations and fantasy. Ramsbottom (1953) described in more detail the use of these mushrooms by the Berserkers. According to him, fly-agaric or bug-agaric were poisonous but not deadly and did not kill healthy people. The potency varied with district. In some districts of France these mushrooms are regularly eaten. S. Odman, in 1784, first suggested that Vikings used fly-agaric to produce their berserk rages. Ramsbottom cited 12 authors who referred to the use of these mushrooms by the Siberian tribes already mentioned. The Koryaks believed a person drugged obeyed the wishes of spirits residing in them. Fabing (1956) and Fabing and Hawkins (1956) was convinced the Berserkers did, indeed, use fly-agaric. It is a very plausible explanation. Going berserk occurred as follows. The Norse took the mushrooms so that the effect came on during the heat of battle or while at work. During the berserk rage they performed deeds which otherwise were impossible. The rage started with shivering, chattering of the teeth, and a chill. Their faces became swollen and changed color. A great rage developed in which they howled like wild animals and cut down anyone in their way, friend or foe alike. Afterward their mind became dulled and feeble for several days. In 1123 AD a law was passed making anyone going berserk liable for several years in jail. It was not heard of since. Fabing quoted Drew who described a modern reaction to _Amanita muscaria._ A patient ate some of the mushrooms at 10:00 PM. Two hours later he developed diarrhea, sweating, vertigo, and salivation. He fell asleep but was awake at 2:00 AM disoriented, irrational, and violent. ON admission to hospital he was cyanotic, responded to pinpricks but not to deep pain. He was disoriented in all three spheres. Somnolence alternated with excitement. He thought he was in hell. He spoke continually and irrationally of religious matters. A physician was misidentified as Christ. When not in hell he was convinced he was in Eden. That evening his mental state cleared and next morning he was normal. REFERENCES: Buck, R. W. (1961). _New Engl. J. Med._, 265:681 Fabing, H. D. (1956). _Am. J. Psychiat._, 113:409 Fabing, H. D., and Hawkins, J. R. (1956). _Science_, 123:886 Fish, M. S., and Horning, E. C. (1956). _J. Nervous Mental Disease_, 124:33 Fish, M. S., Johnson, N. M., and Horning, E. C. (1955a). _J. Am. Chem. Soc._, 77:5892 Fish, M. S., Johnson, N. M., Lawrence, E. P., and Horning, E. C. (1955b), _Biochim. Biophys. Acta_, 18:564 Fish, M. S., Johnson, N. M., and Horning, E. C. (1956). _J. Am. Chem. Soc._, 78:3668 Jensen, H., and Chen, K. K. (1936). _J. Biol. Chem._, 116:87 Lewin, L. (1931). "Phantastica: Narcotic and Stimulating Drugs: Their Use and Abuse." Kegan Paul, London. Ramsbottom, J. (1953). "Mushrooms and Toadstools. A Study of the Activities of Fungi." Collins, London. Safford, W. E. (1916). _J. Wash. Acad. Sci._, 6:547 Wieland, T., Motzel, W., and Merz, H. (1953). _Ann. Chem._, 581:10 ======================================================================== In article <93079.153237SXL136@psuvm.psu.edu> SXL136@psuvm.psu.edu writes: > Anyone had any experiences with this? What were the effects? No personal experience, but I wrote the following at some point: - Use These mushrooms are usually eaten (and are said to taste fine), but people have for some reason tried to smoke them. This is minimally effective. If you want to try, use the skin, which is the most active portion. If you boil them, you may have to drink a lot of broth into which the active principles have leached. They are said to be of slightly decreased effectiveness when dried, particularly after more than a few months. As smoking presumably pyrolyzes the stuff, don't dry it at outrageous temperatures, or pan-blacken it. :-) The dosage has been variously recommended as "one to four caps", "one or two mushrooms", and "30 grams of dried caps" for A. muscaria. A cap, of course, can vary in size from a half-inch sphere to an eight-inch platter. I have no idea. Start way low. The red variety is said to be more potent than the yellow. For A. pantherina, the one reference I have involves half a cup of fresh mushroom per person. This may be high; see "Effects" below. - Effects Reports of effects vary widely, as is to be expected from a natural psychoactive. The mental effects may become apparent within half an hour, but more usually take an hour. The duration seems to be anywhere from four to ten hours. Euphoria, ataxia, and sensory alterations are characteristic, particularly alterations of hearing and taste. Visual effects have also been reported, as has nausea. A. muscaria may also produce cholinergic symptoms such as "profuse salivation and mild perspiration" [Ott]. [text deleted -cak] PGP 2 key by finger or e-mail Eli firstname.lastname@example.org ============================================================================ Amanita are reportedly collected, dried, and stored by red squirrels for food in the winter. It's not known whether they experience psychoactive effects when eating them or not. [by Erowid] ============================================================================ [quoted text deleted -cak] I would be pretty scared to take these, but since I have this darn Psychedelics Encyclopedia right here, let me see what it says. Okay, for starters, Fly Agaric is the same thing as Amanita muscaria (Pagan's question left it ambiguous). There's another one called Panther Caps or Amanita pantherina that has the same psychoactive compounds - ibotenic acid, muscimol and (less important) muscazone - but more of them. Now these guys are somewhat toxic, but the other thing to keep in mind is that the Amanita genus has the species that cause 95 percent of all deaths from mushroom poisoning, so you damn well better know what species you're munching on. Amanita virosa (Destroying Angel), Amanita phalloides (Death Cap),... well, I guess the names tell it all. Apparently you only feel the poison of these bad guys TWO DAYS after you eat them, by which time stomach pumping is seldom any use. They look similar to the "good" Amanitas, so be fucking careful. One funny thing is that about half the books on mushrooms say Amanita muscaria is deadly, but R. Gordon Wasson (who wrote "SOMA: Divine Mushroom of Immortality", arguing that the "soma" of the Rig-Veda was Amanita muscaria) claims that there's not a single firsthand account of lethal poisoning by A. muscaria. Supposedly, if properly dried they are okay if you start with NO MORE THAN 1/4-1/2 CUP OF CHOPPED OR SAUTEED MATERIAL. According to Johnathan Ott, "These mushrooms are powerful. The effective dose range may be narrow. If it is exceeded, even by a small amount, a dissociative experience may result, even a comatose state or an inability to function. Of course, there are many who desire this kind of effect [I love that]; no doubt it would be alarming to others. There are many unanswered questions concerning the toxicity of these mushrooms. It has been suggested, and there is some evidence to support this, that the toxicity may vary according to location and season." The drying process turns ibotenic acid into muscimol, multiplying the potency by 5 or 6, and reduces bad side-effects. Apparently many people who take it say it's "not all that nice, perhaps not even psychedelic". But here's what Ott says: "After oral ingestion, the full effects will begin in about 90 minutes. For me these are characterized by wavy motion in the visual field, an "alive" quality to inanimate objects, auditory hallucinations and a sense of great mental stillness and clarity. The effects are distinctly different from psilocybin, LSD or mescaline, and may last up to 8 hours. Side effects often include nausea, slight loss of balance and coordination, and drowsiness. Smoking produces a more rapid effect of shorter duration." Need I repeat this? Anyone who wants to mess with these should learn a lot more about them than the above. ============================================================================= Newsgroups: alt.drugs From: email@example.com (aankrom) Subject: Re: Amanita muscaria -experiment Message-ID:
Date: Fri, 17 Dec 1993 01:56:43 GMT In article <231302Z16121993@anon.penet.fi> firstname.lastname@example.org writes: >I come from Finland. > >Maybe Amanita muscarias here in Finland are better than >yours? > >* Taavetti * This is more than likely true. The European variety of A muscaria is hallucinogenic/intoxicating while the North American variety will only make the eater very ill. If youlive in North America, don't experiment with A muscaria. Anthony -- Ich fuehle mich so verlassen... ============================================================================= From: email@example.com (chris) Newsgroups: alt.folklore.urban,sci.skeptic,alt.drugs.psychedelics Subject: Re: Book of Revelations and hallucinogenic mushrooms Date: 5 Dec 1994 03:50:30 GMT Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> More on this subject: Date: Wed, 19 Oct 94 17:37 CDT To: ENTHEOGEN@csp.org From: Tom Roberts Subject: guide.Graves, Robert. Difficult Questions, Easy Answers Graves, Robert. (1973). Difficult Questions, Easy Answers. Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Co. ISBN: 0-385-04469-0 1973 Description: First American edition, x + 213 pages. Contents: Foreword, 25 essays Excerpt(s): Another variety of the amanita muscaria grows south of the fortieth parallel, with the pine as its host-tree, and is equally hallucinogenic. That it was ritually used in Biblical times is suggested by an unwritten Hebrew taboo on mushrooms, broken only by the non-orthodox. (Arabs, by the way, are mycophagous, which perhaps accounts for the mushroom eating in those parts of Southern Europe occupied by the Saracens during the early Middle Ages.) I have elsewhere suggested that the golden 'ermrods' laid up in the Ark together with a pot of hallucinogenic manna really represented sacred mushrooms. A concealed reference to their use appears in the Book of Judges: the unlikely story of how Samson collected three hundred foxes and sent them into the Philistine's cornfields [grainfields] with torches tied to their tails. The Palestinian fox is not gregarious and the task of capturing three hundred of them, at the rate of one or two a day, and feeding them all until he had collected the full number would have been a senselessly exhausting one. Besides, how could he make sure that the foxes would run into the cornfields and keep the torches alight? The truth seems to be that Samson organized a battalion of raiders-- three hundred was the conventional Hebrew battalion strength, as appears in the story of Gideon--and sent them out with torches to burn the Philistine's corn. Indeed, in the 1948 Jewish War of Liberation, a raiding battalion was named 'Samson's Foxes.' But why foxes? Because the juice of the amanita muscaria mushrooms (which still grow under the pines of Mount Tabor) could be laced with ivy juice or wine to make the raiders completely fearless, and because this variety, when dried, is fox-colored. So are other mushrooms, such as the popular chanterelle which the Russians call lisichka, 'little fox'; but to clarify its meaning the Bible specifies 'little foxes with fire on their tails'. In the Song of Solomon the Shunemite bride, about to take part in a sacred marriage, urges her lover to fetch her 'the little foxes that spoil the vines, for my vines have tender grapes'. She means Solomon must fortify his manhood with mushroom-juice laced with wine, the better to enjoy her young beauty. Why mycophobes called mushrooms 'toad's bread' or 'toadstools' can readily be explained. When the toad is attacked or scared the warts on its back exude bufogenin, the poison secreted in the white hallucinogenic warts of the amanita muscaria. In ancient Greece the toad was the emblem of Argos, the leading state of the Peloponese, the emblems of the other two states being also connected with the mushroom: namely fox and serpent. The division into states had been made by a legendary king named Phoroneus, which seems a form of Phryneus, meaning "Toad-man'. The capital city was Mycenae ('Mushroom City') said to have been built by Phoroneus' successor Perseus ('the destroyer') who, according to Pausanicus, had found a mushroom growing on the site beside a spring of water. The toad was also the emblem of Tlaloc, the Mexican God of Inspiration, and appears surrounded by mushrooms in an Aztec mural painting of Tlalocan, his Paradise. (Chapter 8, Mushrooms and Religion, pages 101-102) Date: Wed, 16 Nov 1994 20:05:55 -0800 (PST) From: Robert Forte Reply-To: Robert Forte Subject: Re: Amanita muscaria To: Bert Marco Schuldes Cc: email@example.com 2Tb)Z6%5}hBh Hello Bert, What experiences do you have with the Amanita muscaria. How do you prepare it? What amounts? My friend Clark Heinrich and I harvest Amanita every season. He has just written a remarkable book about it entitled STRANGE FRUIT, to be published by Bloomsbury in London this January. He's claiming it to be the body of christ and the philosopher's stone. He is following Wasson's line but he is not as careful as Gordon, more poetic, polemical, and far more outrageous. Huston Smith said his book is the most significant oon the subject since Wasson. He claims to have broken through and been bathed in white light after eating the Amanita and after enduring many difficult experiences. I've tried it several times, gradually increasing the amount. We make a tea of rehydrated mushrooms, mix with milk and honey, drink, and drink it again after it passes through you. I've sweat and salivated like never before, and my vision was distorted. But the only entheogenic effects were barely felt sense of strong energy and desire to roam the forest. Concentration seemed improved when I sat in meditation. Higher amounts will certainly bring stronger experience but I like to go slowly into these things. My friend's material is very persuasive, alot of it. There may be more to the Amanita phenomenologicly, than is generally recognized. I knew Gordon Wasson in his later years. He'll probably be reborn as an Amanita muscaria. . . RF Date: Mon, 07 Nov 94 13:27 CST To: ENTHEOGEN@csp.org From: Tom Roberts Subject: Boston: Hallucinogens Conference Program: Myth and Reality Saturday Nov. 12, 1994 10AM - 4PM Sponsored by Maliotis Cultural Center and Boston University at Maliotis Cultural Center, 50 Goddard Ave, Brookline, Mass. No charge, but seating is limited, so call for reservations 617-522-2800 Located on the campus of Hellenic College The conference will explore the different ways in which cultures define what they consider to be their history and reality, but what other cultures claim is myth; focusing particularly on the cultures of Meso and South America and Classical Greece. SPEAKERS/TOPICS: Richard Evans Schultes/The Significance of the Hallucinogens of the New World Thomas J. Riedlinger/ Mushroom Cult and Christianity Carl A. P. Ruck/ Retracing the Way to the Eleusinian Mystery Chris
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