Psychedelic Sacraments and the New Psychotherapy – Synergistic Press, Spring 2017
Changing Our Minds is an experiential tour through a social, spiritual and scientific revolution that is redefining our culture’s often confusing relationship with psychoactive substances. Veteran journalist Don Lattin chronicles the inspiring stories of pioneering neuroscientists, psychotherapists, spiritual leaders and ordinary people seeking to lead healthier lives by combining psychedelic drugs, psychotherapy, and the wise use of ancient plant medicines.
The Botanical Mind: Art, Mysticism and The Cosmic Tree was originally conceived as a trans-generational group exhibition, but has been postponed. In the meantime, we have launched this complimentary online programme of new artist commissions, podcasts, films, texts, images and audio, expanding on and enriching the ideas and issues informing the show over at www.botanicalmind.online.
Drawing on indigenous traditions from the Amazon rainforest; alternative perspectives on Western scientific rationalism; and new thinking around plant intelligence, philosophy and cultural theory, The Botanical Mind Online investigates the significance of the plant kingdom to human life, consciousness and spirituality across cultures and through time. It positions the plant as both a universal symbol found in almost every civilisation and religion across the globe, and the most fundamental but misunderstood form of life on our planet
Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds & Shape Our Futures is a 2020 nonfiction book on mycology by English biologist Merlin Sheldrake – brother of our talented musician Cosmo Sheldrake! His first book, it was published by Random House on 12 May 2020
In a recent article for Artnet, Eleanor Heartney argued that ‘spirituality is at the heart of the established canon and that mystical and occult ideas run through the works of artists as diverse as Kandinsky, Malevich, Mondrian, Beckman, Miró, Dove, and Klee.’ She then noted a ‘new receptivity to spirituality’ that reflects our current state of upheaval including a ‘widespread recognition that materialism has produced a climate crisis that may spell the end of life as we know it.’ As at the turn of the last century, ‘a search for alternatives has manifested itself in a surge of interest in spiritual and spiritualist concerns.’ The Botanical Mind sits neatly alongside Heartney’s article by surveying similar ideas and artists while drawing attention to contemporary artists linking spirituality to the environment and the climate emergency.
In this highly anticipated sequel to his international bestseller The Old Ways, Macfarlane takes us on an extraordinary journey into our relationship with darkness, burial, and what lies beneath the surface of both place and mind.
The basis for the new documentary film, Mountain: A Breathtaking Voyage into the Extreme. Combining accounts of legendary mountain ascents with vivid descriptions of his own forays into wild, high landscapes, Robert McFarlane reveals how the mystery of the world’s highest places has came to grip the Western imagination—and perennially draws legions of adventurers up the most perilous slopes.
I’ve been interested in the edible forest garden idea for over twenty years and have planted and designed several myself in Ireland in that time, and visited several others. But they have never lived up to my expectations and were largely unproductive, despite sourcing as many perennial vegetables and other interesting edible plants as I could. Here I review the claims made for them and what evidence there is to support the idea- and conclude that, as Permaculture founder Bill Mollison said in the first place, in temperate regions you are far better growing your fruit trees and vegetables separately.
Standing at the crossroads of psychology and religion, this catalyzing work applied the scientific method to a field abounding in abstract theory. William James believed that individual religious experiences, rather than the precepts of organized religions, were the backbone of the world’s religious life.
Meditation and psychedelics have played key roles in humankind’s search for self-transcendence and personal change. However, neither their possible synergistic effects, nor related state and trait predictors have been experimentally studied. To elucidate these issues, we administered double-blind the model psychedelic drug psilocybin (315 μg/kg PO) or placebo to meditators (n = 39) during a 5-day mindfulness group retreat.