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The Immortality Key: Lost on The Road to Eleusis

CANNABIS CULTURE – The Immortality Key is a bestselling guide, which suggests a entheogenic position within the historical Christian Eucharist, that originated with and was handed down from the cult of Dionysus and the Eleusinian mysteries of historical Greece. In this text Chris Bennett, who has written about a few of these similar themes and areas of historical past provides his views on the place the guide wins and fails.

Warning, biases forward….

To be clear, that is as a lot of a ‘response’  and ‘discussion’ about The Immortality Key as a ‘review.’ With that mentioned, this text is on no account supposed to dissuade the reader away from The Immortality Key, however slightly an growth,  dialogue and at occasions, dispute ,of most of the concepts expressed in it. This article can be greatest understood, after having fun with a radical studying of the pages of The Immortality Key. I’m one other researcher, who has been down a few of these similar rabbit holes, and I include my very own views and biases.

For those that select to proceed with this text, with out having learn The Immortality Key, watch this animated video synopsis of some of the main points in The Immortality Key so that you no less than get the fundamental drift of the dialog.

About The Immortality Key

Brian Muraresku’s The Immortality Key has taken the subject of entheogens and faith, significantly entheogens and Christianity, into Mainstream Culture, which is an unimaginable achievement in and unto itself. The creator, a seeming new wunderkind for entheogenic analysis, and has said that he has been engaged on this magnum opus for over a decade. As Lawyer, and Classicist, with a level in Latin, Greek and Sanskrit, Muraresku does carry to the desk a degree of educational credibility. Reviews  for the book have been extremely positive, and his private journey story mixed with a quest for the entheogenic grail—proof of an entheogenic sacrament–is as entertaining as any of Dan Brown’s greatest promoting work.

There is far I agree on in The Immortality Key, akin to the usage of entheogens on the formative interval of human tradition; their affect on religions; their eventual disappearance; their later use by witches and secret societies in Europe which was confronted with additional suppression ; and the relevance of the return of those substances in our personal period. There can also be a lot I disagree with.

When the guide first got here out, together with the interview on Joe Rogan, with Muraresku and Graham Hancock, which has obtained  over 11millions views, quite a few individuals on Social Media posted it on my wall or tagged me in tales about it, because of what they noticed as similarities to my very own work in to entheogenic historical past. This has continued for some months now because the guide turns into more and more standard, and for that reason, I’ve felt the necessity to put together a response to it.

In truth, most of the subjects touched on in The Immortality Key are ones I personally have written about, so I do have some background on this space. Muraresku is conversant in this, having learn by 3 of my 4 books, which he said to me he loved and was impressed by the scholarship. As effectively, Carl Ruck, a mentor of kinds to Muraresku, championed for his pioneering value in entheogenic scholarship all through The Immortality Key, reviewed my very own guide coping with the usage of entheogens within the Bible, in 2003, in the London England Sunday Times. Graham Hancock, who wrote the foreword for Muraresku’s guide, can also be conversant in my analysis on this space, not too long ago publishing an article I wrote concerning the biblical period archeology out of Arad, Jerusalem, concerning the ritual use of cannabis and substantiating my very long time concept about the role of cannabis as an entheogen amongst the ancient Hebrews.  Not surprisingly with this in thoughts, there are some overlaps in The Immortality Key, though our conclusions in lots of of those areas are divergent, greater than sufficient in order to dissuade any suggestion of plagiarism.

Brian has made clear to me, The Immortality Key is just not an encyclopedia. It is meant as a common, journalistic intro to a really area of interest matter for a really broad readership. My personal work is way more encyclopedic, and for a really area of interest readership. So I additionally wish to be clear, I do respect the creation of curiosity on this space and that i don’t want to dissuade his readership. But on the similar time, being right is just not a recognition contests, it rests on proof and details, and I do wish to level out the place I feel this guide goes astray and, as famous within the title, will get Lost on The Road to Eleusis, the title of a guide paid homage to all through The Immortality Key. The Road to Eleusis was authored by Muraresku’s mentor Ruck, together with fellow entheogen pioneers R Gordon Wasson, and Albert Hofmann, it purports an ergot preparation of some type on the centre of the traditional Greek Eleusinian Mysteries.

Muraresku appears to hint this ceremony all the way in which again to Neanderthals, and suggests a mixed origin between the Greek Eleusinian Mysteries with the Vedic Soma by their widespread Indo-European ancestry. He additional postulates the continuation of the Elusinian rites and sacraments although the cult of Dionysus after which into Christianity, portray Jesus as a kind of Semitic type of the Dionysian God, who was actually worshipped within the area the place Jesus was from.

Muraresku builds a case on textual and archeological proof. Textually, he brings in historic references from from the likes of Dioscorides,  Homer, historical Greek and Gnostic texts and the Church Fathers. Archeologically, The Immortality Key brings three bits of onerous proof to the desk to make this case: Evidence of a Beer infused with nightshades from Calvari d’Amposta in Tarragona, Spain, from 2340 BCE that was interpreted by the sooner researchers as “a hallucinogenic beer that was consumed during mortuary ceremonies”; proof for the manufacturing of an ergot infused beer from 2nd century BCE at Mas Castellar des Pontos in Catalonia;  and indications of a wine infused with hashish, opium, henbane together with a wealth of different plant and animal components from a seeming manufacturing unit of preparation in 1st century CE Pompei, which is recommended as proof for some kind of ritual wine. In this regard I applaud Muraresku’s efforts, as to many books and articles on entheogenic historical past depend on things like deciphering the shape of mushrooms in ancient iconography, or novel new symbolic interpretations of ancient texts.

In this text I’ll focus on proof that was missed that really helps to construct Muraresku’s speculation a couple of misplaced sacrament of the traditional world; the place our views overlap; the place they differ; in addition to mentioning some clear and apparent errors, which I really feel took Muraresku down the unsuitable path, and brought about him to get misplaced on The Road to Eleusis.

Drug Infused Elixirs

I discover the archeological finds offered in The Immortality Key significantly enriching as the topic of infused wines and beers is one thing I’ve been taking a look at for a while. As the Classics Professor Carl Ruck, has famous in his evaluation of my 2001 guide, Sex Drugs, Violence and the Bible, which additionally advised infused wines in early Christian rituals:

Ancient individuals had been fascinated by herbs and their therapeutic powers and knew way more about them than we do; no less than about mixing herbs to launch their efficiency.

Ancient wines had been all the time fortified, just like the ‘strong wine’ of the Old Testament, with natural components: opium, datura, belladonna, mandrake and henbane. Common incenses, akin to myrrh, ambergris and frankincense are psychotropic; the straightforward availability and lengthy custom of hashish use would have seen it included within the mixtures. Modern medication has seemed into utilizing hashish as a ache reliever and in treating a number of sclerosis. It might be that historical individuals knew, or believed, that hashish had therapeutic energy.

Much of their data, handed down by an oral custom, has been misplaced and to some extent it’s the fashionable prejudice towards medicine that has stopped us on the lookout for it…”

Was There a Whiff of Cannabis About Jesus?” The Sunday Times, Jan. 12, 2003

Varieties of psychoactive crops had been utilized in such infusions. According to Dioscorides, and his commentator Matthiolus, one may “boil the root of mandrake in wine down to a third part, and preserve the decoction, of which they administer a cyathus (about a fluid ounce and a half), to produce sleep, and to allay severe pains of any part; and also before operations with the knife, or the application of the actual cautery, that the operation should not be felt.” Theophrastus and Dioscorides are thought to have been the the primary to immediately  point out the aphrodisiac and soporific properties of mandrake (Atropa mandragora). Dioscorides additionally informs us that one dram of the basis of “manic” nightshade (Atropa belladonna), taken in wine, elicits “empty forms” and “images of not unpleasant kind”, however he provides {that a} double dosage can carry psychological disorientation for 3 entire days. Muraresku in fact notes Dioscorides on this respect, in addition to Pliny’s “recipes for frankincense and myrrh wine, the perfumed resins used in the Catholic Mass to this day” (Muraresku, 2020), in addition toHomer an different historical authors.  he additionally compares these recipes to the nightshade infused beer discovered lengthy earlier than Dioscorides personal time present in Calvari d’Amposta in Tarragona, Spain.

However, having lined lots of this similar floor, as I used to be studying The Immortality Key, I used to be extra blown away by what was not in there, than what was. A ball was dropped in relation to the references of Democritus to infused wines, in Muraresku’s dialogue of different historical sources akin to Pliny and Descarte on this regard. Both are cited at size by Muraresku with regard to their references to aphrodisiacal and medicinal wine infusions, however Democritus’ well-known references are way more direct with regard to psychoactive preparations.

The entheogen infusions of Democritus

Democritus recognized a wide range of infused wines which can be usually believed  to include hashish, beneath the names “thalassaegle,” “potammaugis” and “gelotophyllis” had been recorded by Democritus (c.a. 460 b.c.). “Democritus’s famous recipe for a hemp wine is suitable for internal use: Macerate 1 teaspoon of myrrh… and a handful of hemp flowers in 1 litre of retsina or dry Greek white wine… strain before drinking.”(Ratsch, 2005) “The gelotophllis of Pliny… a plant drunk in wine among the Bactrians, which produced immoderate laughter, may very well be identical with hemp, which still grows willd in the country around the Caspian and Aral Seas” (Houtsma, et al., 1936/1993).  Pliny (23-79 a.d.) quotes the next description from Democritus:

“The Thalassaegall he speaks of as being found on the banks of the river Indus, from which circumstance it is also known as potamaugis. Taken in drink it produces delirium, which presents to the fancy visions of a most extraordinary nature. The theangelis, he says, grows upon Mount Libanus in Syria, upon the chain of mountains called Dicte in Crete, and at Babylon and Susa in Persia. An infusion of it imparts powers of divination to the Magi. The geolotophyllis, is a plant found in Bactriana [i.e. BMAC], and on the banks of the Borysthenes. Taken internally with myrhh and wine all sorts of visionary forms present themselves, excite the most immoderate laughter.”

Interestingly, Bactria is a area that will probably be returned to for debatable archeological proof for an infusion that contained hashish once we focus on Soma.  Muraresku does seek advice from Pliny, briefly with regard to infused wines as famous above, and stating “that the Pythia priestesses at Delphi inhaled the smoke of smouldering henbane seeds to produce their oracular visions”. I’ve my doubts about this reference to the Pythia burning henbane at delphi and  Muraresku doesn’t cite a supply right here. I’ve by no means seen this declare immediately within the phrases of Pliny and I’ve seemed round since seeing it in The Immortality Key, I’ve additionally requested Tom Hatsis one other researcher on this space of historical past, and he has not seen this both. Under the heading HYOSCYAMOS, KNOWN ALSO AS THE APOLLINARIS OR ALTERCUM, there isn’t any point out of this, and plainly the suggestive identify herba apollinaris, could have brought about some to invest right here about use by the Pythia. However, Pliny does point out “the ancients were of opinion that the leaves act as a febrifuge, taken in wine.” Curiously, I don’t recall seeing this reference to henbane infused wine in The Immortality Key, and one would suppose it might have been a reference of curiosity. One wonders if Pliny’s authentic reference right here was truly even consulted?

Zosimos, and the Egyptian Darnel and Cannabis infused Beers and wines

Muraresku suggests the potential use of the psychoactive plant darnel within the kykeon, and that is the view of Ruck as effectively. In rising and harvesting the sacred barley, the “job of the priestess, Ruck contends, would have been to monitor closely the growth of the darnel and ergot so that neither got out of control” (Muraresku, 2020).

Here once more, fascinating proof was missed as darnel has been recognized in Egyptian beer recipes, alongside with hashish and different crops, however right here from the later time interval of the 4th century CE, in an account attributed to the alchemist Zosimos. “…wines can be made in a multitude of ways, [as shown]through many accounts that authors have left to us, and nature, and art such things, that is, grown wines from the vineyard and medicinal, or by adding various spices like palm, cannabis seed, etc …”; “Certainly brewers of Egyptian beer [‘zythi’], which is more powerful [then our beers]are not lacking in the false and wicked arts, and might be better used for intoxication. This [concoction]includes: borage, cannabis seeds and leaves, helenium, ivy leaves, strychnine, and darnel.”* As Tom Hatsis has famous of this :

“Interestingly, he uses “lolium temulentum” for “darnel” (a recognized psychoactive), which particularly attracts consideration to the intoxicating powers of the plant (temelentum means “intoxication”)! He can also be evaluating the addition of issues like hashish, darnel, and strychnine to the magical arts!!! I imply, he calls them “false and wicked arts,” however that’s Eexactlyhow writers commented on magical works. He is brazenly recognizing the usage of hashish and darnel in potions by magicians!” (Hatsis, 2016)

No Nepenthe? 

Even extra curious is the omission of the well-known accounts of the Greek nepenthe in Homer. In regards to key Greek textual proof for such preparations, Muraresku factors to a well-known passage from Homer, the place the witch Circe turns Oddysseus’ males into pigs with a magic wand. Later Oddysseus, with the help of Hermes, comes up with an antidote.

“She will combine thee a potion, and solid medicine into the meals; besides she shall not be capable of bewitch thee, for the potent herb that I shall give thee is not going to endure it. (H.10.290)

Muraresku makes a lot of this passage, referring to the writings of Calvert Watkins, he even ties it with Soma.

And whereas the Circe passage above looks like a foolish, little youngsters’s story about witches and pigs, Homer is actually “describing a religious ritual”–“a liturgical act of Indo-European date, identical with the soma ritual of Vedic India”. (Muraresku, 2020)

Hmm I missed the place Soma turned males into pigs in what I learn within the Vedas, so you’ll excuse me if I’m uncertain of this said connection. In the Greek rendering of the story the time period Pharmakos is used. This reference is a key level mentioned at size in The Immortality Key, and one which was additionally referred to in The Road to Eleusis. Its fascinating, however clearly there aren’t any assortment of medicine that can flip males into pigs, so purely mythological, and never that nice of proof for the usage of infused wines for entheogenic functions within the historical world. However, there’s a a lot better reference in Homer to an infused wines, significantly ones for treating grief, which is some extent Muraresku makes regarding the potential Christian use of such preparations, in addition to amongst different cultures, significantly round funerary rituals.

In this regard, I discovered it very odd, that The Immortality Key didn’t point out one other preparation present in Homer, and this being doubtless probably the most analyzed, mentioned and hypothesized instance of an infused wine within the historical world, the ‘nepenthe’, which is definitely a greater instance of an infusion than the magic hog potion – The Odyssey of Homer (Ninth-Eighth century BC) describes the Nepenthes which got here to the Greeks from Egyptian Thebes:

Then Helen, daughter of Zeus… solid a drug into the wine whereof they drank, a drug to lull all ache and anger, and convey forgetfullness of each sorrow. Whoso ought to drink a draught thereof, when it’s mingled within the bowl, on that day he would let no tear fall down his cheeks, not although his mom and his father died, not although males slew his brother or expensive son with the sword earlier than his face, and his personal eyes beheld it. Medicines of such advantage and so useful had the daughter of Zeus, which Polydamna, the spouse of Thon, had given her, a lady of Egypt, the place earth the grain-giver yields herbs in biggest a lot, many which can be therapeutic within the cup, and lots of baneful. There every man is a leech expert past all human variety…

The historian Diodorus Siculus, who lived within the 1st century B.C., famous that also in his time, greater than 7 centuries after the composition of Homer’s Iliad, “people say that the Egyptian women make use of the powder (of this plant, scil. the nepenthes) and they say from ancient times only those women who lived in the ‘Town-of-Zeus’ [i.e. Thebes, which was also known as Diospolis] had found medicines which cure wrath and grief” (1, 97, 1-9; Eus. PE 10, 8, 9-12; cf. additionally Ps.Iustinus, Cohort. advert gent. 26e). This clearly identifies this preparation as current as an actual commodity, exterior the realm of fable, as is the case with Circe’s hog potion.

As I’ve famous with particulars in  Nepenthe, A Cannabis Infused Wine for Grief?’, because the Greeks of these occasions had been already effectively conversant in the usage of Opium, the broader consensus is that Nepenthe was a hashish preparation. A degree of concurrence with Muraresku’s mentor Ruck.

“It is generally assumed that the drug, which Helen is supposed to have learned in Egypt, was opium, but the effects as described in the poem are much more like Cannabis, which was also widely employed in Egypt and throughout the Near East” (Ruck, et al., 2007).

Now as Muraresku tries to tie within the pig potion from Homer, with soma, it’s value noting right here that Professor Patrick McGovern, who’s cited all through The Immortality Key, for his experteise, has advised that soma, was a cannabis and ephedra infused wine, an fascinating level that by no means made it into Muraresku’s guide, doubtless, because it didn’t match with the ergot primarily based Road to Elusis connection that he hoped to ascertain.

As The Immortality Key tries to construct a case for a psychoactive infused wine for grief, utilized in Christian funerary rites, in numerous chapters, its curious that he missed this clearer and extra direct reference to Nepenthe, an infused wine, used for grief at a funeral, in Homer, and went with the extra legendary swine potion. However, it needs to be famous, this different materials doesn’t weaken the case that Muraresku is making an attempt to construct, it’s key proof that additional makes the case in his favour of psychoactive wine infusions.

As Muraresku notes of such infusions particularly “Wines reputation as a complex elixir travelled all the way from the Greek Dark Ages to the fall of the Roman Empire because that’s what it was —a versatile substance ranging from what Scodel calls a ‘drug against grief,’ to a perilous, sometimes fatal ‘medicine,’ to a tool for invoking wine gods both old and new ”. “Fatal”, on this regard, is  a reference to the potential outcomes of improperly mixing components, like henbane, mandrake and a few of the different components referred to in historical recipes.

“Wine gods old and new” brings us to the topic of Dionysus, a Greek god that Muraresku sees as the premise for Jesus’ personal relationship with wine, in addition to a part of a lineage that goes again by Elusis to the origins of Soma as effectively.  Hypothesized connections between Dionysus and the Soma Cult had been additionally mentioned in my 2010 guide Cannabis and the Soma Solution, together with claimed connections of a Dionysian affect on Christianity, primarily based on the works of earlier researchers, not cited to by Muraresku.


The connection between Soma, Dionysus and the Christian mysteries are in no way new or novel.  nineteenth century historical world scholar François Lenormant, in The Beginnings of History According to the Bible and the Traditions of Oriental Peoples: From the Creation of Man to the Deluge referred to “the god Soma or Haoma, prototype of the Greek Dionysus” (Lenormant, et al., 1881). A connection that has been famous by different researchers, akin to J. Wohlberg within the article Haoma-Soma in the world of ancient Greece and Rendel Harris’ Eucharistic Origins (1927) :

….The nice Aryan sacrament is older than the invention of the vine. The first Bacchae in Greek lands had been ivy-chewers or ivy-drinkers, in affiliation with a fermented honey-drink, which we additionally discover employed within the consecration of the Soma. For Graeco-Roman peoples, the Soma-plant is changed by the vine… We don’t, nonetheless, doubt that for the Indo-Germanic peoples, the unique medication which makes man immortal is the juice of the Soma-plant.

…. Since we discover the ivy divinised in Greece as Bacchos-Dionysos (for Dionysos was an ivy-god earlier than he was a vine-god), we could infer that the Soma of the Vedas, which can also be the Haoma of the Zend-Avesta, is similar factor because the Nectar of the Greek gods. Nectar, additionally, is a drink which confers and sustains immortal life. We shall most likely be protected in our philology, if we clarify the primary syllable of nec-tar as that means demise (cf. the Greek… nekus) and the second syllable as related with the Greek… teiro, to put on away, to destroy; the Nectar or Soma is the death-destroyer; its spiritual use is, then, inevitable….The principal level to be remembered is that,  for all our race, the drink means immortality; it makes us just like the blessed gods. The discovery of this intoxicant is, subsequently, an epoch. (Harris, 1927)

Seeing a diffusion of the Aryan Soma cult coming into Christianity barely altered by the Greek Dionysus, Harris defined:

The restoration of the unique type exhibits us clearly… that the doctrine of immortality was concerned within the Eucharist from the beginning, for immortality is the attribute accompaniment of the draught of the Soma… We can see now why, within the closing eucharistic prayer within the Teaching of the Apostles we’ve the expressions of thanksgiving for ‘the data and religion and immortality which thou hast made recognized to us by Jesus thy Servant . . . to us thou hast given religious foods and drinks and everlasting life by thy Servant.”

…. It will, maybe, be mentioned that there isn’t any must ship Jesus to India seeking the Soma draught… within the Syrian Church the Eucharist was generally known as the ‘Sama’ or medication… of life; and… Ignatius of Antioch… described [the Eucharist]in Greek language as medication of immortality. The coincidence within the phrases is so hanging, that it’s pure to counsel that there’s something primitive about it. …. The phrase Sama is just not real Semitic ; it has been borrowed from another language…It is quite common in Syriac and Aramaic and would possibly simply have been utilized by our Lord. It wouldn’t, nonetheless, name up the Greek phrase for ‘body’ [soma]fairly as readily because the Indian phrase would do.

…. Jesus was talking of the Indian, Avestan, Indo-Germanic Soma, when His disciples thought He was talking of His physique. That single conjecture explains the thriller and exhibits us how the parallel with the pagan Mysteries was invited from the beginning. It is just not essential to assume, although it appears possible, that Jesus had travelled Eastward at a while in His adolescence. The conjecture could discover help with out the added hypothesis. Let us depart that for additional enquiry. (Harris, 1927)

It needs to be famous that regarding the Ignatius reference, the identification of “the medicine of immortality “is here with the bread, not the wine of the sacrament. “At these meetings you should heed the bishop and presbytery attentively, and break one loaf, which is the medicine of immortality and the antidote which wards off death but yields continuous life in union with Jesus Christ….” Ignatius additionally states “Thus no devil’s weed will be found among you” in the identical textual content. Conceivably, if we’re speaking about entheogenic sacraments within the early Christian interval, this may very well be interpreted as a transition level to the fashionable placebos, as its in a time interval the place what turned the Catholic Church appear to be splitting from the extra experiential Gnostic sects that may later be suppressed.

Now to be clear, Muraresku’s tackle this does differ in some accounts with that of Harris and Wohlberg. Muraresku sees a diffusion with the Greek Eleusian Mysteries, earlier than making its means into the Dionysic model of the ceremony, and he makes a lot of a possible widespread origin for the Eleusian and Vedic rites, on the scantest of proof in a number of scant paragraphs.

However, as Muraresku has informed me in 2017 he has learn and loved Cannabis and the Soma Solution, I discovered his account about first listening to of Ignatius of Antioch reference to the sacrament as a ‘medicine of immortality’ an fascinating coincidence, as that is distinctly referred to within the earlier work of Harris, which was cited in my guide, and Harris work on this space was not cited. I’d have assumed he would take a look at the parts of my guide detailing such connections whereas researching his.

If ever you end up in a recreation to attach the traditional dots, you need Father Francis in your staff. Sensing the place I’m headed… he will get one other mischievous twinkle in his eye. “You know . . . . we call the Eucharist the pharmakon athanasias,” he beams, utilizing the Ancient Greek phrase for the “Drug of Immortality.” The priest had first talked about it throughout my go to to Italy final May. But earlier than that, I had truthfully by no means heard the expression. Until I discovered the unique Greek supply, I believed the brainy Catholic was simply pulling my leg. (Muraresku, 2020)

If I used to be taking a look at entheogenic use in one thing like Dionysus or tying it into Christian use, I’d be checking the indexes of the books on my shelf, and in his case, my books had been there, with these explicit citations. When I requested Brian if he learn it in a dialog in 2017, he said  “I really like Cannabis and the Soma Solution“.  Brian additionally informed me he was studying Liber 420, and he ordered my guide, Sex, Drugs, Violence and the Bible from me immediately, I additionally despatched him a substantial quantity of different articles of curiosity and documentaries. Unfortunately none of this was seen as worthy of use to him, regardless of the very related floor lined, as, like Harris, Wohlberg and others who’ve lined this similar territory, I used to be by no means cited. Generally in my very own work, as with many respected researchers, I are likely to see who has lined the territory previous to myself and correctly accredit them. There is a transparent lack of that accreditation and quotation in The Immortality Key, in my view, and I’ve heard different authors that I do know, specific that somewhat an excessive amount of liberty was taken from there personal work on this regard as effectively.

As effectively, I feel Muraresku missed a lot relating to the types of infusions that will have been utilized by the Dionysian cults, foremost amongst these, hashish, a mixture that was on this regard, even advised by Muraresku’s mentor Prof. Carl Ruck, “Since the wine of Dionysus is a mediation between the god’s wild herbal ancestors and the civilized phenomenon of his cultivated and manufactured manifestation in the product fermented from the juice of the grape, it is most probable that this was the way in which the Greeks incorporated hemp into their pharmacopoeia” (Ruck, 2007).  Indeed, Ruck, a classicist is in good firm right here, as each the historical past of areas Professor Mircea Eliade, and the classicist Erwin Rohde have advised hashish use within the background of the Dionysian faith. I’ve detailed my very own analysis into the proof for drug infused wine within the cult of the Bachae in one other article ‘The Cannabis infused Wine of Dionysus?

Dionysus within the Holy Land

Muraesku makes a lot of an historical Isrealite web site recognized for the worship of Dionysus, even mentioned to be the God’s birthplace, and named after his Scythian followers, Scythopolis, now the location of the fashionable metropolis, Beit She’an.  “the ancient city of Scythopolis was the legendary birthplace of Dionysus himself. For that reason it was also called Nysa…”. However, the mythology has the Greek god born born on Mount Pramnos on Ikaria, and later raised in a area named Nysa. Scythopolis in Israel, was later renamed Nysa after the legendary space Dionysus was raised as a toddler, the god was not born there. This designation of Scythopolis as Nysa was was a later tribute after the realm had been conquered by the Seleucids. It was not till the reign of Antiochus IV Epiphanes (r. 175-164)  that  Scythopolis was renamed Nysa.

In Greek mythology, the mountainous district of Nysa (Greek: Νῦσα) was variously recognized as Ethiopia, Libya, Tribalia, Arabia, and notably for our use India, by Greek mythographers. Nysa was the normal place the place the rain nymphs, the Hyades, raised the toddler god Dionysus, the “Zeus of Nysa”. Nysa was mentioned to have been named initially after Dionysus childhood nanny. Significantly, as we will see, centuries earlier than Scythopolis was renamed,  Alexander the Great thought he had rediscovered Nysa in India, the place it was believed Dionysus was worshipped beneath the identify Shiva.

In this regard, The Immortality Key misses a lot with regard to Scythians, Jews and Dionysus’ connection to Shiva. As I focus on in my article on Dionysus, some Scythian teams did worship Dionysus and relics for the God have been recognized in Scythian tombs and websites.

As effectively from archeological proof we all know that Scythians each burned hashish in funerary rites in addition to drank infusions of it. The use of hashish incense in funerary rites was not restricted to the Scythians and has been identified with other Indo-European groups, akin to a web site in Romania relationship greater than 5,000 years, and at Indo European Gushi websites in China relationship again to 700 BCE. As a lot of the speculation by Muraresku is related with funerary rites and entheogens, in addition to prolonged discussions on the rites of Indo-European tradition,  one would have thought this explicit, effectively documented affiliation would have been examined. I can’t perceive the way it was missed.

Besides proof figuring out burnt hashish, a bone cup, gold goblets and a leather-based flask containing residues of hashish which have been recovered from varied Scythian websites. Prof. Patrick McGovern, who, as famous, is referred to continuously in The Immortality Key has said:  “At Pazyryk, [A Scythian site] the preferred beverage thus appears to have combined a marijuana high with an alcoholic buzz” (McGovern, 2009).

As effectively, as I’ve famous in my article on Dionysus, there have been branches of the Scythians who worshipped Dionysus. Relics devoted to the god have been discovered at Scythian websites, akin to a gold rhyton with the top of Dionysus on its tip. Combined with the proof for hashish in historical Israel, which is assumed to have been doubtless derived from Scythian influences, one would have thought such factors would have been raised with regard to Scythopolis, as the traditional Israeli web site garners appreciable consideration in The Immortality Key.

In relation to the current discover of cannabis resins burnt in a 8th century BCE temple in Arad, Jerusalem, it’s fascinating to notice that Prof Carl Ruck has advised this came from a Scythian influence into Israel.  There could have been different methods the traditional Jews utilized psychoactive substances.

The potential position of hashish and different psychoactive substances in historical Jewish and Christian tradition, is one thing I had been suggesting for over 1 / 4 century earlier than the emergence of the archeology out of Arad. As myself and others have famous, there are indications of infused wines, and stronger preparations such because the Biblical “strong drink” (shekar) all through the Bible: “An inebriating Potion described in the Old Testament; but distinct from Wine; probably a Soporific or visionary vinous infusion, analogous to ancient Greek Wines, of one or many Psychoactive plants”(Ott 1995).

Jewish wine infusions

In The A to Z of Prophets in Islam and Judaism, Scott B. Noegel, Brannon M. Wheeler “The use of drugs, especially alcohol… as a means of inducing or enhancing the prophetic experience is attested periodically throughout the ancient Near East, and is probably related to the mantic’s role as an herbalist and medical practitioner” (Noegel & Wheeler, 2010)

Evidence for opium use has been discovered all through the traditional Near East, particularly on Cyprus, thought its connection to Cypriot cults has been questioned. The follow of inhaling intoxicating substances like hashish and incense additionally seem… Texts from Mari reveal that no less than some prophets partook in extreme wine ingesting as a way of accessing the divine. Ugartic tablets additionally element the occasions of the marzeah feast, a repast by which… lifeless kings had been summoned to wine and dine with the residing… (Noegel & Wheeler, 2010)

Muraresku does point out the marzeah, however I don’t suppose he adequately addressed how a lot these practices had infiltrated jewish tradition. Like Amos’ condemnation of those that quaffed such mixtures within the House of the gods, Isaiah condemned those that search oracles by the lifeless by inebriation (Isaiah 28:7-22). These references present, despite the fact that in a unfavorable mild, that such cultic practices had been each recognized and happening within the area.  And once more, as there’s a give attention to funerary rituals and infused wines in The Immortality Key, it’s unlucky that this compelling proof was not included. In regards to the Biblical custom, it has even been advised by students, that the Biblical Prophet Ezra, used Persian infused wine, or haoma as a way of entheogenic induction (Brown, 1890; Dobroruka, 2002). As Entheobotanist Jonathan Ott has famous:

… Like the traditional Greeks, the traditional Israelites didn’t know distillation know-how, however possessed an inebriant aside from wine, which apparently was stronger.  Was the Biblical shekar, ‘strong drink,’ not an inebriating potion analogous to the traditional Greek wines, a few of which had been entheogenic potions? Down by historical past there are innumerable cases of the addition of psychoactive crops to wines and different alcoholic drinks. (Ott, 1993)

In A Cyclopaedia of Biblical Literature. Kitto famous: “The palm wine of the East… is made intoxicating… by an admixture of stupefying ingredients, of which there was an abundance… Such a practice seems to have existed amongst the ancient Jews…” (Kitto, 1846). Talmudic reference point out this use as effectively: “The one on his way to execution was given a piece of incense in a cup of wine, to help him fall asleep” (Sanh. 43a). Such preparations had been utilized by the traditional Jews, for ritual intoxication, and for relieving ache. A Reverend E. A Lawrence, in an essay on ‘The wine of the Bible’ in a nineteenth century version of The Princeton Review famous that:

It seems to have been an historical customized to provide medicated or drugged wine to criminals condemned to demise, to blunt their senses, and so reduce the pains of execution. To this practice there’s alleged to be an allusion, Prov. xxxi. 6, ‘Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish,’ …To the identical customized some suppose there’s a reference in Amos 2:8, the place the ‘ wine of the condemned’ is spoken of… The depraved right here described, along with different evil practices, imposed unjust fines upon the harmless, and spent the cash thus unjustly obtained upon wine, which they “quaffed in the house of their gods”…Mixed wine is usually spoken of in Scripture. This was of various varieties… generally, by lovers of sturdy drink, with spices of varied varieties, to provide it a richer flavour and better efficiency (ls. v. 22; Ps. lxxv. 8). The ‘ royal wine,’ actually wine of the dominion… Esther i. 7), denotes most likely the most effective wine, such because the king of Persia himself was accustomed to drink. (Lawrence, 1871)

This connection was not restricted to nineteenth century fancy both, as Kenneth Walker famous in The Story of Medicine the “drug, hashish… is of venerable age, and when Amos wrote (around 700 B.C.) on the subject of the ‘wine of the condemned’, he was probably referring to it” (Walker, 1955).

Thus, this infused wine, not solely had ache numbing qualities, however was additionally “quaffed in the house of their gods” giving clear indication it was wanted for entheogenic results as effectively.

That it’s in comparison with the wines of the King of Persia, additionally brings us to the cannabis infused wines of the Zoroastrian period, akin to that taken by Arda Viraf, and Vistaspa. These are recognized references to cannabis infused wines, used for travelling the “path of the dead”. Considering the shut proximity and relationship between the Persians and the Jews, this could have once more been examined in relation to the recommendations put forth in The Immortality Key. Instead, this indigenous Israelite historical past and connection to such infusions  is ignored in an effort to push weaker ties with the Greek mysteries of Eleusis.

As Arthur George famous in his article ‘The Mythology of Wine VII: The Wine Miracles of Dionysus and Jesus Compared‘: But surely Dionysus does not provide the only backdrop to the miracle at Cana. Far from it. The story has a multivalent background, and the Jewish and emerging Christian traditions involving wine need to be recognized as well” (George, 2020).

Dionysus and Yahweh

Likewise together with this, extra consideration ought to have been drawn to the truth that numerous historical sources recorded the widespread perception of their time, that the god worshiped by the Jewish individuals, Yahweh, was identifiable as Dionysus. Notably, Tacitus, Lydus, Cornelius Labeo, and Plutarch all both made this affiliation, or mentioned it as an extant perception. The Jewish Encyclopedia makes it clear, that at occasions, and certain beneath pressure for most of the Jews did actually worship Dionysus, significantly throughout the time of the Maccabes, in addition to explaining the connection between Nysa and Scythopolis.

The common assertion in I Maccabees (i. 51, 54, 55) that Antiochus Epiphanes pressured the Jews to sacrifice within the Greek trend, is amplified in II Maccabees (vi. 7; evaluate III Macc. ii. 29) into the assertion that the Jews had been pressured to participate within the festivals of Dionysus and to deck themselves with ivy (κίσσος); therefore Hippolytus (“De Antichristo,” pp. 33-35, § 49), a Church father of the second century, regards Antiochus Epiphanes because the prototype of Antichrist…  the Dionysia had been celebrated in each nation that had come beneath the affect of Greek tradition. Antiochus XI. even bore the by-name “Dionysus” (Josephus, “Ant.” xiii. 15, § 1; “B. J.” i. 4, § 7); and Nicanor, the overall of Demetrius, threatened to consecrate a Temple at Jerusalem to Dionysus until Judas Maccabeus was delivered to him (II Macc. xiv. 33).

According to Plutarch.

A fable of Dionysus is related with the Palestinian metropolis of Scythopolis. Pliny (“Historia Naturalis,” v. 18, § 74) and Solinus (ed. Mommsen, ch. 36) derive the identify of this metropolis from the Scythians, who had been settled on that spot by Dionysus in an effort to defend the tomb of his nurse who was buried there. The Greeks and the Romans had been firmly satisfied that the Jews had a cult of Dionysus, basing this opinion on some exterior level of similarity. Plutarch thinks that the identify of the Jewish Sabbath is derived from σάβος, the cry of the ecstatic Bacchantes. More essential nonetheless is his additional assertion that the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles, as celebrated within the Temple at Jerusalem, was actually a type of Dionysus worship.

In ‘The Jews and their God of Wine‘, Jonathan Kirkpatrick explains:

In the interval between the 2 revolts of the Jews of Palestine towards Roman rule some non-Jews sought to determine the God of the Jews with their very own god of wine, Dionysus or Liber. The precise proof suggests three issues. The cult of the Temple at Jerusalem was seen by outsiders to be characterised by an affiliation with, and the usage of, wine, an impression Jews did nothing to counteract. Second, outsiders acted on this impression, each as a part of the cognitive step of figuring out the God of the Jews with Dionysus, and, presumably, making presents to the Temple, whereas it stood, of wine-related dedications. Third, this was a characterisation Jews had been keen to embrace themselves, even at occasions of revolt. (Kirkpatrick, 2013)

As effectively, as mentioned in my article on Dionysus,  in relation to the Jews, Dionysus and infused wines,  I present that cash had been minted in historical Israel which have been interpreted as indicating the mixed worship of Dionysus and Yahweh. That such strategies of ecstasy and worship had been extant within the Judaic world to some extent looks like a extra doubtless avenue of infusion into ‘Paleo-Christianity’ as Muraresku refers back to the early years of the Christian cult, than the extra direct hyperlink to the cult of Dionysus and Christianity that The Immortality Key suggests.

Indra, Soma and Dionysus

That the connections between, India, Indra, Shiva and Dionyus had been missed was one other main ball drop.

Numerous historical sources commented on Dionysus’ personal travels to India,  and within the 4th century BCE when Alexander the Great triumphantly marched into India, and witnessed the urgent of grapes, he believed he had rediscovered the childhood residence of  Dionysus, Nysa.

As famous on the historic web site, the identification of Nysa with India, performed a big position on the time of Alexander:

In 327/326, Alexander invaded the Indus valley, the place he found in Gandara a city referred to as Nysa that was devoted to the god Dionysus. (Probably, this was the Indian god Shiva. The mountain Meru talked about beneath was the middle of the Indian universe.) The solely description of the temple is to be discovered within the Life of Apollonius of Tyana by the Greek creator Philostratus (more). The story of the invention is informed by the Greek creator Arrian of Nicomedia, whose Anabasis (part 5.1.1-2.2) was translated by Aubrey de Sélincourt.

The fable of Nysa

[5.1.1] In the nation on Alexander’s route between the river Cophen and the Indus lay the town of Nysa, alleged to have been based by Dionysus, on the time of his conquest of the Indians.

[5.1.2] Nobody is aware of, nonetheless, who this Dionysus was, nor the date of his invasion of India, nor the place he began from, and I personally ought to hardly care to say if this Theban deity marched together with his military towards the Indians from Thebes or from Tmolus in Lydia, or the way it was that after passing; by the territories of so many warlike peoples unknown to the Greeks of that date, he fought and conquered solely the Indians….

[5.1.3] The individuals of Nysa, upon Alexander’s method, despatched their chief, Acuphis, to him accompanied by thirty of their most distinguished males with directions to ask him to go away their metropolis to its god.

[5.1.4] The story is that after they entered Alexander’s tent, they discovered him sitting there dusty and travel-stained, nonetheless carrying his tools, his helmet on his head and a spear in his hand. The sight of him sitting thus shocked them a lot that they prostrated themselves upon the bottom and for a very long time spoke by no means a phrase. At final, nonetheless, Alexander bade them rise up and never be alarmed; whereupon Acuphis addressed him within the following phrases.

[5.1.5] “Sire, it’s the request of the individuals of Nysa that you simply present your reverence far Dionysus by leaving them free and unbiased. For when Dionysus, after his conquest of the Indians, was on his means homeward in direction of the Greek sea, he based this metropolis as a memorial of his lengthy journey and his victory, leaving to inhabit it these of his males who had been not match for service – who had been additionally his Priests. He did however as you might have completed; for you too based Alexandria in the Caucasus and Alexandria in Egypt and lots of different cities as effectively, and can discovered but extra hereafter, in that you should have surpassed the achievements of Dionysus.

[5.1.6] Dionysus named this metropolis Nysa and this land Nysaea in reminiscence of his nurse, who bore that identify; and to the mountain close to the town he gave the identify Meru – or the Thigh – as a result of legend has it that he grew within the thigh of Zeus. Ever since that point Nysa has been free; we who stay in it have made our personal legal guidelines – and obeyed them, nearly as good males ought to. If you want for a proof that Dionysus was our founder, right here it’s: that is the one place in India the place ivy grows.”

[5.2.1] Alexander discovered what Acuphis mentioned extremely agreeable; he would have preferred very a lot to consider the outdated story about Dionysus’ journey and his founding of Nysa, for then he would have had the satisfaction of realizing that he had already penetrated so far as Dionysus did, and would presently advance but additional; he felt furthermore that his Macedonian troops would consent to share his hardships somewhat longer, in the event that they knew they had been in competitors with Dionysus. Accordingly he granted to the individuals of Nysa the continuance of their freedom and autonomy.

As the German-American philologist, comparative mythologist and Indologist, Michael Witzel, Professor of Sanskrit at Harvard University and the editor of the Harvard Oriental Series has famous:

When Alexander got here throughout the vines within the japanese Hindu Kush, he instantly concluded that this space should have been that of Dionysus. Indeed, the inhabitants of Nuristan and Kashmir (each earlier than Islam) and of the fashionable pagan Kalash Land (north-western Pakistan) nonetheless develop vines and press grapes there every fall. The new wine continues to be devoted to Indra” (Witzel, 2012)

Indra, being the God of Soma, and King of the Gods, (a determine that in some ways, Shiva would later supplant). As Dr. Richard Stoneman, a professor of classics and historical historical past, describes of the Greek connection in The Greek Experience of India: From Alexander to the Indo-Greeks:

“It is sometimes argued that this Dionysus is a form of Indra as first king, culture-hero of the Aryans, warrior-leader and bringer of agriculture. Martha Carter produces some compelling evidence that Alexander’s expedition may have wandered into the Indrakun festival in the Kafir lands, in November or January, which involved a dancer dressed as a horned goat, behaving lewdly, while wine was pressed and drunk.” (Stoneman, 2019)

The connection between Soma, Dionysus and the Christian mysteries are in no way new or novel.  The nineteenth century historical world scholar François Lenormant, in The Beginnings of History According to the Bible and the Traditions of Oriental Peoples: From the Creation of Man to the Delugereferred to “the god Soma or Haoma, prototype of the Greek Dionysus” (Lenormant, et al., 1881). That wine was being consumed by worshippers of the God usually related to Soma, Indra, provides some credence to Professor McGovern’s concept that soma was a hashish infused wine, a view, that not like lots of McGovern’s other suggestions on ancient infusions, that didn’t make it into The Immortality Key.

Remnants, and even alleged descendants of Alexander the Great’s army may still survive in the region. and they’re recognized for producing a cannabis product that’s thought-about by some, the most effective cannabis on the earth. Nestled within the peaks of the Himalayas, is the small city of, Malana, which is surrounded by steep cliffs and snow-capped mountains. Stories and legends fuelled by locals’ noticeably totally different bodily options and their language, that are not like that of every other native tribe, recount how Alexander the Great’s military took shelter on this remoted village in 326BC after they had been wounded in a battle. There are surviving artifacts from the interval, akin to a greek sword saved in an area temple, however genetic exams haven’t been been completed to substantiate the ancestral connection

However, slightly than Indra, the connection between Dionysus with one other nonetheless broadly worshipped Indian god, Shiva, appears to have been been extra broadly accepted and advised in each the traditional world and the brand new. As effectively in India, a spotlight of Indra worship and its use of soma, appears to have been supplanted by Shiva worship and the usage of hashish as bhang, a scenario that’s indicated within the fable Samudra manthan or The Churning of the Ocean of Milk.

There could also be one other believable clarification for this fable than supplantation. Dr. Koenraad Elst has convincingly advised that Shiva of Puranic Hinduism is actually the continuation of the Vedic Indra. Indra has a wide range of epithets and attributes which later appear to have been inherited by Shiva. But, in relation to his examine, it is very important be aware that Shiva and Indra are each related to intoxication, Indra is praised as having an incredible urge for food for the Soma juice, Shiva drinks copiously of bhang, he’s the Lord of Bhang. As effectively one of many early Indian names for hashish, was Indrasana, sana being a Sanskrit phrase for hashish.

…Shiva, “the auspicious one”, is an epithet of not solely Rudra however of Vedic gods normally. Indra himself is known as shiva a number of occasions (Rg-Veda 2:20:3, 6:45:17, 8:93:3). Shiva is in no way a non-Vedic god, and Indra by no means actually disappeared from standard Hinduism however lives on beneath one other identify. (Elst, 1999)


Regardless of debate concerning the connections and overlap between Indra and Shiva, these between Dionysus and Shiva appear considerably clearer. As Robert Cowann famous in The Indo-German Identification: Reconciling South Asian Origins and European Destinies (2010), by this designation of Nysa with India, the deities Shiva and Dionysus turned conflated:

Roman writers would affiliate the Greek god Dionysus with the Hindu Siva [Shiva]….  Dionysus, the Greek god of wine and mystical ecstasy was presupposed to have journeyed to India, subdued the Aryan and Dravidian peoples, absorbed their philosophies, and returned to Europe with their chief concepts. Euripides describes Dionysus in Bacchae (406 B.C.) as a supplier of information and the conqueror of Arabia, Persia and Bactria.

….Polyaenus goes as far as to say that Dionysus received the Indians drunk earlier than attacking them and used baccanatic orgies as a part of his army technique for subjugating all the Asian continent….

The commentary that such historical writers did determine Dionysus with Siva has gained the virtually unanimous approval of students… due to the numerous similarities between the cult of Dionysus and that of Shaivite devotees… each are mentioned to treatment the sick and to have supplied the Indians with weapons; each are related to plowing, with figs and vineyards, with mountains, and with dancing; and each are depicted as having lengthy, bushy hair and carrying a spear or trident. (Cowan, 2010)

I extra full discover and illustrate the connections between Dionysus and Shiva in ‘The Cannabis infused Wine of Dionysus?‘ However it is very important additionally be aware that Shiva, like Dionysus, can also be a god of intoxication, with datura, betle, henbane, wine and significantly hashish, all taken in devotion to him. 

‘Shiva is often portrayed holding a percussive instrument (a repetitive beats device!) and he is commonly associated with bhang, a drink made with Indian hemp, and the practice of Tantrism, a tradition of erotico-magic sexuality. On the other side Dionysus is known as the “god of dancing”, “the loud one” and “god of wine” (which was commonly mixed with different herbs to “bring forth the gods and ancestral spirits”).’ – SHIVA AND DIONYSUS

in reference to this affiliation, Prof. Carl Ruck has famous “Dionysus … was additionally mentioned to have returned triumphantly from travels to India, the place he would inevitably have been assimilated with the god Shiva, with whom he shares many iconographic similarities, to the extent that they might have been initially the identical deity, and each concerned with the hemp sacrament (Ruck, et al., 2007).

“Since the wine of Dionysus is a mediation between the god’s wild herbal ancestors and the civilized phenomenon of his cultivated and manufactured manifestation in the product fermented from the juice of the grape, it is most probable that this was the way in which the Greeks incorporated hemp into their pharmacopoeia” (Ruck, 2007).

As Shiva’s cult is just not solely recognized for his or her use of hashish, but in addition at occasions, wine and different potent narcotics akin to henbane and datura, it’s not shocking that many have advised such components within the Dionysian infusions as effectively. Like Dionysus, Shiva is a god of intoxication, some myths depict the God perpetually stoned in meditation.  Moreover, Shiva’s sacramental connection to cannabis, has survived into the modern age.

 As I’ve famous in The Cannabis infused Wine of Dionysus? there are some actually nice books which have been written on this connection, akin to Alain Danielou’s Gods of Love and Ecstasy: The Traditions of Shiva and Dionysus and as famous even Muraresku’s personal mentor has immediately commented on the connection between the 2 Gods and hashish. Why would this be excluded? I suppose as its not a cease over on The Road to Eleusis?

Dionysus and Thrace

Adding to this checklist, is the dearth of point out of the Thracian connections to Dionysus and the historical past behind his worship there, the place he was generally known as Zagreus. Although, there are variations of the parable, most accounts say Dionysus was born in Thrace, traveled overseas, and arrived in Greece as a foreigner. As I famous in additional element in my article on Dionysus, a wide range of well-known students have advised hashish use within the background of the Thracian cult going again greater than a century.  Professor Mircea Eliade, a revered supply on the historical past of religions, referred to components of shamanism within the Thracian cult of Dionysus, and advised their use of hashish use (Eliade, 1982). In the 1925 English translation, of the German work, Psyche, Seelencult und Unsterblichkeitsglaube der Griechen (1890–1894);  Psyche: The Cult of Souls and the Belief in Immortality Among the Greeks, in a chapter on ‘The Thracian Worship of Dionysus’  Erwin Rohde, factors to their doubtless use of hashish. (Rohde was one of many nice German classical students of the nineteenth century). Clear historical references to Thracian use of hashish, as famous by Carl Ruck, will be present in Sophocles (496-406), who used “the word Cannabis, apparently to add ethnic detail for his Thamyras tragedy, which tells the tale of the Thracian shaman-singer who contested the Muses …” (Ruck, et al. 2007).  This was additionally famous by Professor Jan N. Bremmer, a Dutch tutorial and historian, who served as a professor of Religious Studies and Theology on the University of Groningen, specializing in historical past of historical faith, particularly historical Greek faith and early Christianity.

Historical authors additionally indicated this. Pomponius Mela, the Latin historian of the primary century AD, described a Thracian feast. “They throw in the fires around them, seeds, the smell of which causes drunken amusement,” wrote the Latin creator. The third century Roman geographer, Solinus, a third-century Roman geographer, referred to an identical customized. “During lunch, the spouses surround the herd, throw seeds out of the weeds they have in the fire, and feel a drunken joy after being hit by their smell with numbness.” 

When historical authors seek advice from the usage of hashish seeds getting used for shamanic functions they seek advice from seeded buds akin to this, lined with resin wealthy calyxes. Producing seedless buds was a method developed later.

Archeological proof from throughout the space which Thrace occupied, confirms hashish was used within the area in funerary rituals way back to 5,000 years in the past, by a discover of skeletal stays and burnt cannabis seeds recovered at a burial mound at modern day Gurbăneşti, Romania. (Rosetti, 1959). Further Archeological proof within the area paperwork its use as late because the 2nd to 3rd BCE at Thracian sites as well. 

This omission of Thrace is especially peculiar once we contemplate that Carl Ruck, a principal character in The Immortality Key, even coauthored a guide detailing the relevance of this connection,  Dionysus in Thrace: Ancient Entheogenic Themes in the Mythology and Archeology of Northern Greece, Bulgaria, and Turkey (2017). My guess is that such historic omissions, had been once more because of the continuous makes an attempt to tie issues again with the kykeon of Eleusis.

Ironically, as he has written about this, I feel Ruck could have one thing to do with this omission. Nothing intentional, however slightly in the way in which Muraresku has got down to pay homage to Ruck, and significantly his coauthored guide The Road to Eleusis, which first made the suggestion that ergot was the sacrament ‘Kykeon’ or as Muaresku presents it ‘kukeon’. This is the place I feel Muraresku loses observe of issues, by making an attempt to repeatedly make this connection between the Mysteries of Eleusis and an ergot primarily based drink as hypothesized by Ruck, Dr. Albert Hoffman the daddy of LSD, and R Gordon Wasson, the daddy of entheogenic mycology.

Lost on the Road to Eleusis? 

I do know Ruck, he reviewed my own book detailing the role of drugs in the Bible, which made some related recommendations about wine infusions within the Christian interval as these raised in The Immortality Key, within the London England Sunday Times. I have interviewed Ruck numbers of times and he has appeared in youtube documentaries I’ve made, on Old Testament references to cannabis, Mithraism, and ancient Greece.  I can solely applaud Muraresku’s efforts to position this pioneering scholar within the mild he deserves, after so a few years of ridicule and tutorial neglect for his concepts concerning the position of psychoactive medicine within the historical world and for serving to to coin the time period ‘entheogen’ to explain their use in a spiritual context. In truth, a few years in the past after I was engaged on a  museum assortment, Ruck gave me ergot ready on rye by Albert Hoffman in a pattern jar, for the writing of the Road to Eleusis. Hoffman said that the entheogenic alkaloids will be separated from the poisonous components with out a lot effort  As I recall, Ruck informed me he received little impact from what had been ready.

I’ve little doubt that ergot may have been present in historical wines and beers, because it was a difficulty for the traditional and medieval world, occurring on generally used wheat and rye, because it was in bread making. There are clear historic accounts and proof of ergot poisoning.

In regards to the potential technique of extraction that would have been utilized by the ancients to soundly get the entheogenic results, with out the poisonous results, the view is that this is able to have been achievable with an uncomplicated  ash and water extraction. As famous of their 2010 Paper, ‘Mixing the Kykeon‘, authors Peter Webster,  Carl Ruck and Daniel M. Perrine clarify:

The hierophantic clergymen would possibly effectively have found the right way to obtain a partial hydrolysis of the largely poisonous alkaloids of C. purpurea, leading to an extract of ergot containing a mix of psychedelic compounds intently just like the Aztec’s ololiuqui. The partial hydrolysis would possibly thus additionally get rid of the poisonous ergopeptine
alkaloids, changing them to psychoactive ergine and isoergine.

But how had been the hierophants to perform this feat, seemingly not duplicated till the20th Century? It should have been a technologically easy process, and employed widespread components, but been simple to maintain secret. Although potassium hydroxide was certainly not obtainable to the Greeks, the ashes of wooden fires definitely had been, and actually a mix of wooden ash in water ends in an answer of potassium of moderately sturdy basicity. Is it doable that merely digesting powdered ergot with wooden ash and water (and presumably wine containing 10% or so of ethanol to enhance the solubility of the alkaloids), heating the combination for a brief interval after which filtering off the liquid may need been the tactic of blending the kykeon? (Webster; Ruck; and Daniel M. Perrine, 2010)

The Immortality Key, suggests, that if we settle for this concept of an ergot infused Eleusinian sacrament, this similar kind of ergot beer know-how could have handed down from the Eleusian Mysteries to tougher proof from 2nd century BCE Spain. At a web site in Catalonia a jawbone with enamel was discovered and a small cup, that each confirmed hint proof of ergot.  An archeological discover dubbed ’The Kukeon of Catalonia’ by Muraresku. The significantly small dimension of the cup discovered provides to the intrigue right here as it might point out that not a lot of a dose was wanted for an impact.  Muraresku sees this as a Greek colonial web site in Spain, associated to the Mysteries of Eleusis, because of a few of the statues and artifacts discovered indicating that, and he describes as a kind of open entry sanctuary, for devotees who couldn’t afford the time and expense to journey all the way in which to Eleusis from Spain. 

To be truthful, Muraresku has dug deep to search out this materials, as websites like this have tended to be uncared for by extra mainstream scholarship, because the papers on them have been  printed in languages like Catalan, and in some instances Ukrainian, which regularly fails to make its technique to English and different extra broadly used languages.  However, this obscurity, has additionally lends itself to avoiding tutorial criticism and peer reviewed opinion of the claims.

Regardless of any questions relating to the potential historic connections between Eleusis and this web site in Mas Castellar des Pontos, Catalonia, I’m questioning if the ash water answer above, would register as ergot in an examination of tartar on 2,000 yr outdated enamel and cups. Over such stretches of time, there are problems with the breakdown of chemical residues to start with, which may trigger misidentification, and this has been on the core of debate and controversy relating to the work of by German scientist, Dr Svetla Balabanova and the alleged Egyptian ‘Cocaine Mummies” as I have discussed at length in another article, where  hashish, as well as cocaine and nicotine, both from New World plants, were found in 1992 by the German toxicologist on Henut Taui’s hair in addition to on the hair of a number of others mummies. Almost 30 years later there isn’t any consensus on this evaluation.

Establishing that this proof for a declare of ergotized beer from the proof in a cup and enamel from a jawbone,  was a processed type of ergot, and never indications of contamination and ergotism, would go a good distance right here. I feel this stays intriguing hypothesis till additional affirmation and consensus will be discovered.

It is with Eleusis that I feel The Immortality Key will get misplaced in its seek for the ‘lost sacrament’ of ‘the religion with no name’, and by making an attempt to repeatedly tie in Eluesis and Ergot in with the Christian mysteries, when the precise proof factors to different candidates. I additionally suppose it does a disservice for the intriguing ergot beer proof out of Catalonia in relation to the Eleusis speculation of Ruck and firm, which is the place the main target ought to have been for it on this regard, nevertheless it will get misplaced with this unsubstantiated diffusion by Eleusis, to the Cult of Dionysus after which proper previous the Jews and straight into Christianity.

Cannabis in Ancient Israel

Just previous to publication of The Immortality Key, some of the essential spiritual archaeological finds regarding the Bible came about, the invention of hashish resins at a  temple web site in Arad Jerusalem that dated again to the Eighth century BCE.

As this got here late within the day for The Immortality Key, Muraresku solely briefly mentions this essential proof of a Biblical entheogen, in his conclusion. However, I’ve been suggesting simply such a task for hashish by the traditional Hebrews for greater than 1 / 4 century, and I put collectively this text to contextualize the etymological analysis that I’ve been placing forth, with the archeological, out of Arad, Jerusalem, for Graham Hancock’s website, (Hancock wrote the ahead to The Immortality Key). In that article and in my 2001 guide, Sex, Drugs, Violence and the Bible, I focus on the proof for hashish, burnt as incense, used as a topical ointment, ingested and infused in wines.

In truth, I’d say that Muraresku put extra dialogue into the discover in his standard interview with Joe Rogan, than he did within the guide. All issues thought-about, with Brian, Ruck, and Hancock who was in studio for the Rogan interview, I’m not going to disclaim that I used to be somewhat greater than miffed that my identify by no means got here up in relation to this…..

In retrospect, Carl and I first got here into contact, after I noticed that the primary version of his co-authored The Apples of Apollo: Pagan and Christian Mysteries of the Eucharist, referred to kaneh bosm as hashish, in a bit clearly primarily based on materials I had offered and I used to be not credited, though a key paragraph within the piece was verbatim to a 1996 article I wrote Kaneh Bosm: Cannabis in the Old Testament. This turned out to be the error of a co-author on the undertaking, who got here throughout a copied model of my article on line, that did not checklist the creator, and it was satisfactorily remedied. Moreover, it was solely when Ruck supported the kaneh bosm speculation that it gained traction and worldwide consideration. Likewise with Hancock selling my materials on his private web site. its not all bitter grapes right here by any means and I do respect the serving to palms which have been provided in that respect.

This is just not the one proof out of the Holy Land relating to hashish as effectively, as Muraresku effectively is aware of. He wrote me particularly for the small print, on one other, later discover of hashish as effectively, in 2018:

I’ve actually been having fun with your books. Quick query right here, when you don’t thoughts? In that 2003 article from The Sunday Times, Ruck had talked about: “Residues of cannabis, moreover, have been detected in vessels from Judea and Egypt in a context indicating its medicinal, as well as visionary, use.”

I’m making an attempt to find the archaeological cite for these Judaean / Egyptian vessels. Do you occur to know the place the finds had been reported? Or would possibly you be capable of level me towards every other onerous archaeological hashish finds from historical Israel / Palestine within the centuries surrounding Jesus?(Muraresku, 2018)

A photograph of the evaluation Professor Carl Ruck wrote about my guide Sex, Drugs, Violence and the Bible, which Muraresku took at Carl’s residence and despatched me.

I’m not positive what the Egyptian vessels Ruck referred to the place, however I did level Muraresku to archeological proof from the 4th century in Bet Shemesh, that indicated its use, topically and burnt as incense:

Archaeologists have discovered onerous proof that cannabis was used as a drugs 1,600 years in the past, the Israel Antiquities Authority mentioned yesterday. Archaeologists uncovered natural stays of a substance containing cannabis, grasses and fruit on the stomach space of a teenage feminine’s skeleton that dates again to the fourth century, the antiquities authority mentioned in an announcement. Anthropologist Joel Zias mentioned that though researchers knew cannabis had been used as a drugs, that is the primary archeological proof. (Associated Press 1992) – Associated Press article, Hashish proof is 1,600 years outdated, that appeared in Vancouver newspaper The Province, on June 2, 1992:

As Zias and his colleagues defined: “We assume that the ashes found in the tomb were cannabis, burned in a vessel and administered to the young girl as an inhalant to facilitate the birth process” (Zias, et al., 1993). This discover of hashish in a Judean cave was additional supported by the later evaluation of glass vessels from the location which additionally contained proof of cannabinoid residues (Zias, 1995). Between this and the discover in Arad, we’ve a 1.200 yr historical past of hashish use within the historical Holy Land, and this can be a story that was ignored, for much less compelling proof.

After the publication of The Immortality Key, Murarsku defined this was not checked out because it was proof of medical use, not entheogenic, nonetheless, as I famous the fabric relating to kaneh bosm, in incense, anointing oils, and wine infusions, embodied each, the identical healing holy oil used by Jesus and his disciples, additionally contained entheogenic effects, explicitly. I’m assuming as this didn’t tie in with the efforts to attach the Christian Mysteries with the kykeon and Eleusis–it simply didn’t ‘fit’ the agenda of the guide.

The Archeology of Drugs

Muraresku focuses lots on indo-european and proto-indo-european connections, making an attempt to tie in how hypothesized ergot beer know-how could have handed down from stone age Turkey, by Eleusis to 2nd century BCE Spain, the place the jawbone and cup had been discovered, ’The Kukeon of Catalonia’.  in relation to this Muraresku asks the reader “In the absence of any analysis of the many vessels recovered from Eleusis itself, is this how history’s longest game of hide and seek comes to a close?” (Murarsku, 2020).

“To the best of my knowledge and until proven otherwise, the graveyard beers from Mas Casrellar de Pontos and the Necropolis of Las Rueda represent the first scientific data for the ritual use of psychedelic drugs in classic antiquity” (Muraresku, 2020).

This is just not the case, there’s a lot stronger proof. We know that hashish has been burnt for fumigation functions in funerary rites in Indo-European tradition way back to 5,000 BCE, by a discover of skeletal stays and burnt cannabis seeds recovered at a burial mound at modern day Gurbăneşti, Romania. (Rosetti, 1959) alongside Scythian evidence,  in addition to Indo-European  Gushi in Central China, as indicated in finds from 2500-2800 years in the past.  There have additionally been Scythian gold cups with residues of both cannabis and opium which have been advised as utilized in a ritual setting. The Scythians had been very current in historical Greek tradition and this well-known archeological proof confirmed what the Greek historian Herodotus wrote about their use of hashish in funerary rituals within the fifth century BCE. This wide selection of time and vary of space, for hashish in funerary rites, is far stronger proof than what is recommended for the ’The Kukeon of Catalonia’ in The Immortality Key.

There is a bent to method issues as a ‘first time ever’ all through The Immortality Key, and to disregard the proof from those that trod the trail earlier than. I’m positive there’s way more proof than realized by any single researcher relating to the ritual use of medicine on the traditional world. More is on the way in which… “…[N]ew techniques for analyzing residues in excavated jars and identifying tiny amounts of plant material suggest that ancient Near Easterners indulged in a range of psychoactive substances. Recent advances in identifying traces of organic fats, waxes, and resins invisible to the eye have allowed scientists to pinpoint the presence of various substances with a degree of accuracy unthinkable a decade or two ago.

The April twentieth problem of Science, Vol 360, Issue 6386, incorporates the story, Cannabis, opium use part of ancient Near Eastern cultures:

For so long as there was civilization, there have been mind-altering medicine. Alcohol has been round for no less than 10,000 years, however current advances in chemical evaluation of outdated pots reveal that different psychoactive medicine had been current on the daybreak of the primary complicated societies some 5000 years in the past within the historical Middle East. Ancient individuals from Turkey to Egypt experimented with native substances akin to blue water lily, whereas imports like hashish and opium constituted of poppies unfold by early worldwide commerce networks. Armed with the brand new knowledge, archaeologists are probing simply how these medicine impacted early societies and beliefs. Some argue that the influence of those psychoactive substances has been underestimated, and {that a} drug tradition was central to ritual in Mesopotamia, Anatolia, Egypt, and the Levant.

Indeed, there’s clear proof for the ritual use of cannabis in ancient Israel from the 8th century BCE. alongside proof indicating medical applications both burnt and applied topically, from 4th century AD Bet Shemesh, Israel.

Now that is simply archeological proof, and I’m guessing when Muraresku refers to ‘scientific data’, he’s excluding precise textual references to the usage of entheogenic substances getting used ritually, so I gained’t checklist off the appreciable materials right here that may very well be referred to.

One would possibly argue that Muraresku particularly refers to ‘psychedelic’ and hashish is just not seen as such by many sources. Likewise with the time period ‘Classical Antiquity’ it may very well be seen as significantly Greek associated.  However, all through The Immortality Key, in his seek for the ‘lost sacrament’ of ‘the religion with no name’ Muraresku considers numerous areas of the world in his quest.

The similar scenario right here holds together with his potential, the place a veritable smörgåsbord of candidates are thought-about, together with straight up alcoholic beer or wine; alongside infusions of hashish, henbane and different nightshades, opium in addition to different psychoactive crops; and ergot. All thought-about  fairly equally with regard to what this entheogenic candidate could have been, regardless of the vastly totally different results they produce.

History clever, I feel Muraresku fails to make a plausible case of continuity for the strands he provides for tracing his hidden ‘religion with no name’. Discussing the theories of Walter Burkert, who pointed to indications of the usage of psychoactive substances by Neanderthals, making their means into the Greek mysteries, Muraresku explains:

According to Burkert, the experience transferred for tens of hundreds of years from Neanderthal to Neanderthal, and Stone Age homo sapiens to Stone Age homo sapiens, someway got here to a lifeless cease on the temple of Demeter. Without ever explaining how, the German scholar advised that by the point the primitive ceremony arrived at Eleusis, the drug someway vanished from the ‘competition of immortality’” (Muraresku, 2020)

At that time Burkert suggests innocent placebos replaces the psychoactive sacraments of earlier occasions. After placing forth this unimaginable declare of the continuity entheogenic rites from the Neanderthals all the way down to Eleusis, from Burket, with no query or actual knowledge to again it,, Muraresku disagrees with Burkert that issues stopped there, as evidenced by the aforementioned discover of a jawbone with enamel, and small ritual cup, with traces of ergot.

The Hard knowledge of hallucinogenic beer at Mas Castellar de Pontos says in any other case. Rather than being changed by certainly one of Burkert’s “harmless substances,” the unique, Stone Age sacrament appears to have survived effectively into the historic interval inside sure Indo-European traditions. Not simply the japanese department, among the many unique Indians with their psychedelic soma. Not simply the western department, among the many bloodthirsty Vaccean Celts with their graveyard beer on the Necropolis of La Ruedas. But amongst bona fide Greeks who hailed from Phocaea because the Vikings of Antiquity with well-defined lineage. (Muraresku, 2020)

That this unsubstantiated continuity of  transference of entheogenic data from the Neanderthal to the Indo-Europeans is put forth and  accepted with so little knowledge, is an actual phenomena of The Immortality Key. In this regard, Muraresku acknowledges that some “scholars may come along and object that the ergot-infused beer… has nothing to do with Greece… it’s just another example of Celtic and Iberian extravagance…” (Muraresku, 2020). I’d go additional and counsel extra analysis is required to ascertain the advised ergotized beer, and extra tutorial settlement on this identification, precise affirmation as effectively.


Both Indo-European Culture and the Vedic Soma, have been longtime pursuits of mine, as detailed in my guide Cannabis and the Soma Solution and my current series on its botanical identity.  In an effort to attach soma with the kykeon Muraresku appears to skip over a lot right here, to try to preserve his ergot entheogen speculation alive.

“…Proto-Indo-European, the mother tongue that seems to have introduced the religious use of drugs to both Greece and India, expanding outward over an ancient global triangle binding modern-day Iceland to siberia to Sri Lanka. A secret pharmacology that somehow found its way into the subterranean catacombs… in Rome, now under the exclusive jurisdicition of the Vatican” (Muraresku, 2020).

Again referring to Watkins concept on a typical ancestry of the kykeon sacrament at Elusis and Soma of the Veda, with no actual clarification of the speculation and even dialogue of its acceptance amongst Vedic students, Muraesku states:

If anyone was going to smuggle medicine into Europe, it was the Proto-Indo-Europeans who exported soma to India–that Vedic elixir explicitly characterised by Watkins as “hallucinogenic.” For some motive Western students aren’t scandalized by the prospect of historical Indians doing medicine. The japanese department of our Indo-European household appears unique and far-off, unconnected to our greek foundations. Bu dig deeper, and the problem stays: the place did soma come from? Why would the unique sacrament of Western civilization make the lengthy journey to the Himalayas however someway get misplaced en path to Eleusis? If half the Proto-Indo-European custom went east into India, and the opposite half went west into greece, then the widespread supply of each may include the reply to the entire psychedelic affair. (Muraresku, 2020).

Discussing Soma, and making an attempt to attach it with the Kykeon of Eleusis, Muraresku depends virtually fully on the work of the American linguist and philologist Calvert Watkins, who, by the similarity of language, girls’s position within the ritual, and  girls had been additionally behind the manufacturing of soma, has advised this connection. No different opinions are provided by Muraresku on this radical suggestion of a mixed origin for the kykeon and soma, and no actual effort to clarify the speculation in a comparability of texts, past a short three paragraph clarification of Watkins concept.

There can also be the problem right here of creating this connection between Vedic India and the Greeks, whereas skipping over the usage of Haoma by the Avestan and Zoroastrian religions of Persia.  the persian traditions would have held far more of an affect on Greece that India. How this goes with out point out is past my comprehension in a critical examine of this matter.

Moreover, each Watkins and this connection had been extra completely examined in one other current publication, Soma and the Indo-European Priesthood: Cereal Cultivation and the Origins of Religion, ( Shelley, 2018) which like so many works that tilled the soil The Immortality Key sprouted from, is just not accredited.

Soma as an ergot infusion? 

In the now famous Joe Rogan interview, in his dialogue of soma, Muraresku appears to point that he thinks soma could have been the ergot on barley, as barley is listed as an ingredient within the sacred drink within the Rg Veda.

15 minute mark to 17 Joe Rogan interivew

Brian -We have an thought truly introduced some some Sanskrit to present you. Yeah. You need to see some Sanskrit?
[Image of sanskrit text appears]

Joe- Oh, look at how stunning that is.

Brian- There it is.
Joe- Their
language writing it in Sanskrit. God, it’s so fairly.

Brain -Do you need me to learn it for you?

Joe- please.You can learn that.

Brain – Yeah.

Brian – So this was my main in faculty.this is from the Rigveda. Right. And it’s the oldest literature in Western civilization. We suppose it’s amongst the Indo-European.

Languages, it’s the oldest recorded literature that we have. It may be 1500 B.C., seven hundred, maybe a lot earlier, like the Iliad and The Odyssey and Greek, this is the mom tongue of all the Indo-European languages. And what they write about a lot is Soma, which is each a God and the juice that is pressed from this God. And what they’re speaking about there is is making this ritual potion very a lot like the kukeon [sic] on that we discover amongst the historical Greeks.

And right here Soma is described as a combined potion… combined with barley. Go Bashiracombined with milk. And so I’ve learn all the theories that you have about what Soma was, whether or not it was the Amanita Muscaria mushroom or some psilocybin containing species or DMT. The means they described soma right here is all the time a combined potion, which so in this case combined with barley and milk.

Joe –  So that would be an ergot of some type?

Brian- already there talked about….  I imply, and in order that’s that’s what Rock Hofman and Wasem had been saying in 1978. We have we’ve literature from the seventh century BC, it’s referred to as to the Hymn to Demeter, the place they file these components of what the kukeon [sic]was. You requested like, the place’s the precise proof? So within the 70s, we didn’t have a lot. It begins with the literature, which is what classicists do. And so there’s this Hymn to Demeter that was found in 1777, a yr after we declare our independence from Graham’s individuals and what they what they present in there.

As effectively, what i received from this and his guide, is that there’s little proof right here that Brian has even learn a lot on the references and descriptions of Soma within the Rg Veda, like the entire tenth Mandala as an illustration. The tenth Mandala of the Rg Veda makes it clear, that Soma is a definite plant, that has the colors inexperienced and purple, describing the rocks used for urgent it being turned ‘green’ within the course of.

Rig Veda 10.94 – (Wilson’s 1928 translation)

Let these (stones) communicate…. Ye strong, fast transferring stones, you utter the noise of reward… filled with the Soma juice.

They roar like 100, like a thousand males; they cry aloud with green-tinted faces; acquiring the sacrifice, the pious stones… partake of the sacrificial meals…

They communicate, they obtained into their mouth the candy (Soma juice)…chewing the department of the purple tree, the voracious bulls have bellowed.

Splitting, however unsplit, you, O stones… having fun with the Soma, flowing inexperienced (with Soma), they made heaven and earth resound with their clamour.

The stones proclaim it with their clamour on the problem of the Soma-juice,… like cultivators sowing the seed, they devouring the Soma, combine it, and don’t damage it.

….Proclaim the reward of (the stone), which has effused (the Soma-juice); let the honoured stones revolve. [Emphasis added]

Then he goes into this completely unsubstantiated connection between soma and the kykeon, seeming to point that the ‘secret’ ingredient in soma was ergot on the barley. No doubt that barley and honey and milk had been in soma, and that barley could have held some significance to soma, it’s listed as one of 5 herbs under the Kingdom of soma in the Atharvaveda, the fourth guide of the Vedas, the traditional scriptures of the Brahman faith (ca 2,000–1,400 BC), however then so is hashish. The 5 crops are clearly talked about in Book 11, Hymn 8 (or 6), Verse 15:

पञ्च राज्यानि वीरुधां सोमश्रेष्ठानि ब्रूमः।
दर्भो भङ्गो यवः सह ते नो मुञ्चन्त्व् अंहसः॥

“To the five kingdoms of the plants which Soma rules as Lord we speak.
Darbha, cannabis, barley, mighty power: may these deliver us from woe.”

The phrase ‘भङ्ग’ (bhang) right here refers back to the hashish plant. In Cannabis and the Soma Solution, I be aware that the consecration of those as soma, made it soma, in an identical means that the Catholic clergymen invocations turns wine into the ‘Eucharist’. However, there Muraresku did not determine a single passage that may very well be interpreted as ergot coming into play right here.

Muraresku does point out Wasson’s concept of amanita muscaria as soma,  in addition to DMT containing crops, however these aren’t justified by him and are talked about solely in passing, and no different potential candidates from different researchers are thought-about. As I’ve mentioned at size, I do know of no indigenous Vedic students who settle for Wasson’s view, its a Western concept, and it does not hold up to scrutiny based on the evidence Wasson puts forth, as I’ve defined at nice size. Moreover, its recognition is essentially because of Western Chauvinism, I do know of no indigenous indian students that promote Wasson’s mushroom speculation but I can name several who have pointed specifically to cannabis.
After studying my guide Cannabis and the  Soma Solution, which particulars the transition of the Soma cult from its Indo-European roots into India, Graham Hancock personally acknowledged to me that “I have been reading… your excellent Cannabis and The Soma Solution. Really impressed… I was one of those who unthinkingly went with the Wasson hypothesis (in my 2005 book Supernatural: Meetings with the Ancient Teachers of Mankind, and in many subsequent presentations). I regret that now, as even so far as I have read you have already succeeded in demolishing Wasson’s position. Anything I else I write or say on this subject in the future will take your book properly into account” (Hancock, private correspondence 2017). However I suppose by the point of Muraresku’s guide, which Graham wrote the ahead for, he should have had a change of view. A transparent mistake. Ruck can also be conversant in this guide, and I’d counsel it damage our relationship, because of my critique of R Gordan Wasson’s soma mushroom theory, on which a lot of Carl’s personal work is predicated and depends on. In truth, Muraresku himself has learn my guide.

In a 2017 message, when Muraresku was nonetheless engaged on The Immortality Key, he wrote me relating to this matter “I love Cannabis and the Soma Solution. I’m a huge Wasson fan, which is how I was first introduced to your work” (Muraresku, 2017). Noting as effectively of my analysis in one other message, “the evidence for cannabis seems persuasive. And right up my alley” (Muraresku, 2017).  However, as this materials, didn’t comply with the kykeon connection, The Immortality Key was pushing, and was not ‘persuasive’ sufficient. I suppose this was thought-about chaff to be separated from wheat, with regard to tying the Kykeon with soma, and the Christian mysteries, which is the principle agenda of Muraresku’s guide, even when it doesn’t jibe with precise historical past. 

While I feel the speculation on ergotized beer, and the brand new proof out of Catalonia, with regard to kykeon, deserves some consideration, I feel conflating it with the Christian mysteries and Soma, performs down all three. A serious distinction right here will be seen within the frequency of the Soma consumption amongst Vedic devotees, as in comparison with the infrequency of the Kykeon within the Mysteries, as famous within the Rogan interview.

Brian- In truth, there was no afterlife. You simply disappear into Hades to do God is aware of what. But individuals stroll away from elucidates saying that they’d discovered salvation and we don’t know why or how we all know this potion is concerned. We know they make this pilgrimage 13 miles from Athens to permit us to drink this potion. We know they they put together for months, if not years earlier than it, and so they’re endlessly modified afterwards.

A take a look at Indo-european tradition, with regard to their origins, medicine, and the identification of soma, additional dismisses ergot as having any connection to Soma.

Proto-Indo-Europeans, and Indo-Europeans on Drugs

Muraresku boldly claims that “the only logical Proto-Indo-European homeland” is “Anatolia” (Muraresku, 2020). To be clear, this was all the time the minority opinion. The extra broadly accepted view has been that the situation of the Proto-Indo-European homeland is the steppe hypothesis. Again I feel Muraresku skips over extra clear details, in an effort to preserve his ergotized beer concept for Eleusis, and favours a 5,000 beer brewery in Anatolia, over different, I’d argue, clearer proof.

If the Proto-Indo-European homeland has been noticed in the end, then no matter sacrament got here from Anatolia may very well be considered the doubtless supply, nonetheless distant, for each the Greek kukeon and the Indian soma. Implausible because it appears, the Anatolian graveyard beer simply may be the key inspiration behind European civilization. (Muraresku, 2020)

Well maybe when you fully ignore the extra broadly accepted, and now established steppe speculation and different, stronger proof from specialists on Proto-Indo-European and Indo-European Cultures, it may appear that means.  Most importantly, the Anatolia concept was dismissed by its principal proponent years earlier than The Immortality Key was completed. As Muraresku notes, the Anatolian hypothesis, often known as the Anatolian concept was first developed by British archaeologist Sir Colin Renfrew in 1987. Renfrew proposed that the dispersal of Proto-Indo-Europeans originated in Neolithic Anatolia.

However what Muraresku misses is that  Renfrew has since conceded his own long-standing Anatolian Hypothesis was incompatible with recent DNA studies indicating Europe was overrun by horsemen from the Steppes talking Proto-Indo-European. The DNA conclusion helps Marija Gimbutas’ Kurgan Hypothesis that the Indo-European language developed throughout the Eurasian Steppes and unfold into Europe. Renfrew dismisses his personal Anatolian speculation at the 11:50 mark in this video.

As effectively, to counsel that Proto-Indo-European or Indo-European had been behind the spiritual use of medicine, all around the historical world, is in itself ludicrous Western chauvinism. Albeit they might be tied to particular medicine, however behind the usage of medicine and ritual within the historical world? No means. From an anthropological perspective, primitive individuals discovering psychoactive crops an utilizing them in shamanic rituals, is the norm, and we will see this as proof from their pre-existing use in North and South America, Africa, China, and so forth, the place there was no means means that Indo-European tradition launched them. 

Specifically with regard to medicine, Proto-Indo-European tradition,  Indo-European tradition, and significantly ‘soma,  Muraresku skips over a lot that has been recognized and established, by not giving due credit score to the now confirmed steppes speculation. Once the now accepted Steppes speculation is taken into account, the identification of hashish with Indo-European teams is specific. Some particulars on that is wanted to deal with the misinformation offered in The Immortality Key right here. 

It has been lengthy advised that the root word for cannabis, is proto-Indo-European, and was round earlier than the Indo-European language even developed, and cut up of with their totally different variations of the hashish root phrase ‘kanap‘. Professor emerita of archaeology and linguistics at Occidental College Elizabeth Wayland Barber analyzed cognate words for “hemp” and “cannabis” in Indo-European languages, and proposed an etymological root of *kan(n)aB- (where *B represents a *p or *b bilabial stop). A reconstructed Proto-Indo-European (PIE) *p is evident in many IE subgroups. The famed anthropologist Weston La Barre, who thought “cannabis was part of a religio-shamanic complex of at least Mesolithic age…” (La Barre, 1980) suggested that the  name of cannabis itself came into the Indo-European language from the ancient Finno-Ugric language family, comprising Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian and related languages. Words such as kanapish for cannabis occur in Finno-Ugrian languages. (Source of Rus. konoplja, Pers. kanab, Lith. kanapes). The Finnish academic Kalevi Wiik believes that the earliest Finno-Ugric speakers and their languages originated in the territory of modern Ukraine (the so-called “Ukrainian refuge”) during the last glacial period when the whole of northern Europe was covered with ice. This is well within the now declared Proto-Indo-European homeland, these are the ‘Proto-Indo-Europeans’ and so they used hashish ritually, and the funerary rites they carried out unfold into later Indo-European tradition, as evidenced by a number of archeological finds. 

In 2016 a slew of reports articles have come out with Headlines like Founders of Western Civilization Were Prehistoric Dope Dealers (New Scientist) Was Marijuana the Original Cash Crop? ‘ (Men’s journal) ‘Surprising 5,000-Year-Old Cannabis Trade: Eurasian Steppe Nomads Were Earliest Pot Dealers’ (Ancient Origins) ; all stemming from a multi-authored  tutorial Paper, Cannabis in Eurasia: origin of human use and Bronze Age trans-continental connections(Tengwen, Wagner, Demske, Leipe, Tarasov, 2016), that was printed within the journal Vegetation History and Archaeobotany* and which detailed the paramount position hashish performed within the commerce, custom, and unfold of Indo-European Culture. So the above proof relating to the position of hashish within the origins of Western tradition shouldn’t be underestimated. This archeology has proven how the Proto-Indo-European Yamnaya tradition introduced hashish into Europe. Ritual use of hashish in funerary rites within the area inhabited by the Yamnaya goes again no less than 5,000 years, as evidenced by a discover of skeletal stays and burnt cannabis seeds recovered at a burial mound at modern day Gurbăneşti, Romania. (Rosetti, 1959). 

Similar proof that Proto-Indo Europeans burned hashish in a collapse Ukraine 5,500 years was advised by the late British Archeologist Andrew Sherratt, who’s cited on the pages of The Immortality Key on different issues. “It seems, therefore, that the practice of burning cannabis as a narcotic is a tradition which goes back in this area some five or six thousand years and was the focus of the social and religious rituals of the pastoral peoples of central Eurasia in prehistoric and early historic times” (Sherratt, 1995). Some students consider that an space that Sherrat pointed to for ritual hashish use 5,500 years in the past, Ukraine, can also be the supply of the Finno-Ugric language.

The authors of The Encyclopedia of Indo-European Culture be aware that “Hemp has not only been recovered from sites in Romania but also from a Yamma burial at Gurbanesti (Maldova) where traces were found in a ‘censer’ (a shallow footed bowl believed to have been used in the burning of some aromatic substance). It has been found in a similar context from an early bronze age burial in the north Caucasus…. Ceramics were more elaborate than those of the Yamma culture and included, especially in female burials, low footed vessels interpreted as ‘censers’, presumed to be used in rituals involving some narcotic substance such as hemp” (Mallory, et al., 1997).

The late British Archeologist Andrew Sherratt, who advised {that a} ritual hashish infusion was on the core of the so referred to as ‘corded ware culture’.

Sherratt advised that the hashish burning braziers referred to above ultimately went to the way in which aspect, and had been changed by a beverage, though he believes that hashish use continued by this cultural shift. The “disappearance of ceramic braziers in northern and western Europe” was adopted “by the appearance… of prominent forms of pottery drinking vessels. Corded-ware beakers and early bell-beakers are ornamented with impressions of twisted cord: if these are hemp fibres, then the decoration may indicate that their contents were connected with cannabis” (Sherratt, 1995). A view shared by different researchers: “As cannabis can also be infused, i.e., served as a component in a drink, it has also been suggested that the spread of cord-(hemp?) decorated pottery from the steppe westward may also have been part of this same complex” (Mallory, et al., 1997). Evidence of hashish in a grave the place the physique was laid over flowers have been found in Hattemerbroek in Gelderland, Amsterdam, at a tomb that confirmed traits of corded ware tradition, ingesting cups had been additionally discovered on the web site which dated to 2459 – 2203 BC.

Evidence of burnt and infused hashish preparations have been discovered at a number of Scythian websites, and clear proof of hashish burnt in funerary rites and in addition left in numbers of tombs have been recovered at Indo-European websites in China relationship again so far as 800 BCE. As I be aware in additional element my referenced article The Proto-Indo Europeans and Indo-European Cannabis Cult, hashish was part of ritual life, significantly in relation to the kind of funerary rites recognized in The Immortality Key, for hundreds of years, relationship again to the Proto-Indo-European interval.

As the authors of the exhaustive Encyclopedia of Indo-European Culture have famous, “There are… at least three chronological horizons to which the spread of hemp might be ascribed: the early distribution of hemp across Europe; during the Neolithic c5000 b.c. or earlier; a later spread of hemp for presumably narcotic purposes around 3000 b.c.; a still later spread, or, at least, re-emergence of hemp in the context of textiles during the first millennium b.c….” (Mallory, et al., 1997). In regards to an affiliation with burial rites. Celtic use of hashish has additionally been recognized by pollen evaluation of a bowl from a wealthy lady’s grave of the late Hallstatt Period at Niedererlbach, Bavaria (Rosch, 2005). The authors of  The Encyclopedia of Indo-European Culture  likewise be aware that “hemp has… been discovered in an iron age contexts in western Europe, e.g. a Hallstatt burial, presumably Celtic, at Hochdorf in Germany” (Mallory et al., 1997). Cannabis was additionally present in later Viking burial websites as effectively. 

More not too long ago Russian researchers have been making related recommendations about Indo-European hashish use, particularly concerning the Aryan ancestors of the Vedic Indians. In the article ‘Aryan settlements in the Urals: A precursor to Indian Civilisation?‘, Strong archaeological proof which signifies that the Aryans lived in Arkaim, by the Urals, earlier than they went to India by way of Central Asia. The article quotes the archeologist Sergei Malyutin:

Malyutin says that the Aryans got here right here from the west, most likely from the Volga, after which moved to Central Asia after which India. He believes that their sacred drink included hashish boiled in milk with an addition of ephedrine [i.e., ephedra].

“Why do you think they are the same Aryans that later came to India and Iran?” I ask Sergei Malyutin.

“The Rigveda and Avesta contain descriptions of the place where the Aryans came from – it has birch trees and climate looking like ours,” he says. “They had similar burials and the skeletons are of the Indo-European anthropological type… There is another, key feature, chariots, which were used only by the Aryans at that time.” (Konstantinov, 2012) [emphasis added]

It was this kind of excessive mobility that led to the unfold of hashish all through the traditional world, and actually the event of hemp rope has been attributed to the harnessing and domestication of the horse. it’s unclear that archeologist Sergei Malyutin, was basing his analysis on the work of Prof. Victor Sarianidi at BMAC,  the place claimed 4,000 yr outdated archeological proof of hashish and ephedra, and in some case opium poppies, at a t temple web site had been advised to point the crops had been used within the preparation of soma/haoma. Or he could have got here to his theories concerning the drink of the Aryans, primarily based on one other group recognized for each burning and ingesting hashish preparations, that got here out of the Russian steppes, and unfold throughout a lot of the traditional world, Western Europe, Persian, Israel, Egypt, India and even deep into central China, a sequence of Indo European tribes, now recognized to us collectively because the Scythians. As we will this group as effectively has its essential half to play in understanding the mysterious identities of soma and haoma.

Cannabis was additionally a part of the earliest commerce routes we all know of as effectively, as famous in ‘Cannabis in Eurasia: origin of human use and Bronze Age trans-continental connections’, indicating it might have been half and parcel of any “Aryan” migration. “A marked increase in cannabis achene records from East Asia between ca. 5,000 and 4,000 BP might be associated with the establishment of a trans-Eurasian exchange/migration network”. (Eurasia is the most important continent on Earth, comprising all of Europe and Asia).

Descendants of the hashish burners within the Ukraine area, the Scythians, would later unfold the cultic use of hashish, each smoked and drank, and the basis phrase kana, all through a lot of the traditional world. One of the names of the Scythians was “Haomavarga” the Haoma gatherers, and historical texts point out in addition they burnt the haoma in addition to drank at. A Scythian wineskin that had proof of hashish infusion, in addition to gold cups, described by the Russian archeologists concerned with the discover, as ritual vessels for ingesting “haoma” have additionally been found and these contained residues of each hashish and opium. How none of this got here up in relation to Scythians and Scythopolis, in The Immortality Key, raises some questions, as it might be onerous to overlook this. I feel we will see the confounding effort of making an attempt to repeatedly tie issues in with ergot and kykeon as a possible offender.

In my guide Cannabis and the Soma Solution have proposed that the mixed sacramental use of soma and haoma, grew out of the widespread Indo-European ancestry of each the Vedic and Avestan authors, and an earlier widespread cultural and cultic use of cannabis.

We definitely know from later historical references in Zoroastrian texts, that cannabis infused wines were in fact consumed for visionary functions, even visiting the land of the dead. The Zoroastrian texts, come from a time after Zoroastrian reforms had seen modifications within the Haoma recipe, and it’s believed that right here, the fashionable day ephedra solely model of the sacred drink of Zoroastrianism, took place. As The Book of Arda Viraf describes:

…Arda Viraf as chosen out of seven different righteous males. He embarks on this journey wholeheartedly regardless of his wives’ disapproval. After ingesting a mix of wine, mang (Indian Cannabis), and Haoma (Divine plant in Zoroastrianism), his soul went from the physique to Chinvat Bridge and are available again after seven days and nights. While his soul was roaming round, his seven sisters reciting Avesta sitting on Persian Carpet subsequent to ever-burning Fire. After getting back from afterlife, he requested for meals and wine. Then he started telling his imaginative and prescient of heaven and hell. (Beyzai, 2020).

Prof. Patrick McGovern, a Professor of Anthropology and Scientific Director of the Biomolecular Archaeology Laboratory for Cuisine, Fermented Beverages, and Health on the University of Pennsylvania Museum in Philadelphia, who seems all through the pages of The Immortality Key, has advised in Uncorking the Past: The Quest for Wine, Beer, and Other Alcoholic Beverages (2009) that soma/haoma was doubtless a wine or mead like infusion. McGovern, partly,  primarily based his view on later Zoroastrian accounts, such because the Book of Arda Wiraz, has hashish (bhanga, or mang) combined into wine, or in some accounts has haoma. “From a chemical standpoint, the advantage of using an alcoholic beverage is that it dissolves the plant alkaloids” (McGovern, 2009).

As can clearly be seen by this temporary overview, the fabric figuring out the ritual relationship of  Proto-Indo-European and Indo-European cultures with hashish, is much stronger than something Muraresku places forth with regard to connections with the broader view of ‘drugs’ and these cultures and the proof right here could be very particular. For those that want to see how this inter-relates extra particularly with soma see my article The Cannabis Soma/Haoma Theory: A Synopsis Based on the Latest Textual and Archeological Evidence. I don’t wish to go into additional particulars relating to soma right here as I’ve already put extra forth on the subject on this article, than the few scant paragraphs with their daring however unsubstantiated claims of a connection to the  Anatolian graveyard beer and the kykeon of Eleusis, which can be given in The Immortality Key.

Let alone any connection to soma, the precise historical past right here of the Indo-European relationship with hashish, in funerary rites, as evidenced by archeological finds stretching again to five,000 years in the past in Romania; all through the Steppes in Scythian tombs; and lengthening into central China with the Indo-European talking Gushi tradition,  make a a lot better case for the ‘lost sacrament’ of ‘the religion with no name’ than a stone age preparation of a toxin like ergot that made its means all the way down to the Mysteries of Eleusis, as primarily based on a lot later proof of a declare of  somewhat recognized archeological declare of a a lot later ergotized beer in Catalonia. Even extra so once we take a look at the precise archeological proof for hashish within the Holy Land as effectively, which we should always return quickly to as its the actual foundation of the claims in The Immortality Key.

The Cannabis Henbane Opium Infusion

However to be truthful, in his broad seek for the ‘lost sacrament’ Muraresku did give hashish no less than some consideration. Although the authors of the archeological examine of this discover, Drug preparation in evidence? An unusual plant and bone assemblage from the Pompeian countryside, Italy have recognized this as doubtless proof of a theriac, a potent medical infusion that was the premise for later alchemical quintessences and arcanums, because of the space of preparation and the checklist of components, Muraresku has advised this may increasingly have been the kind of drink used within the Dionysian and probably different Greek Mysteries. I feel on this regard, together with his additional analysis into the matter, that Muraresku did make a great case for this.

In discussions with a archeologist who was immediately concerned on the bottom degree of the discover, Muraresku garnered even additional proof than that put forth within the authentic paper. The archeologist concerned advised the location was “specifically designed for the production of drugs”, and from the dialogue Muraresku says the ensuing combination   “seems to be a boutique house wine not intended for mass consumption” (Muraresku, 2020). Indications from the backyard stays exterior of the construction, are that it was a web site for producing a choose number of crops and herbs. Evidence of a “maceration tank for cannabis” would appear to point this was significantly a key element within the infusions.

However, one would have thought that this is able to have elevated his personal analysis with regard to hashish, and as famous, he missed a lot with regard to hashish infusions, in addition to the next French archeological discover reported within the Wine Spectator article ‘2,000-Year-Old Cannabis Wine Discovered‘:

A 2015 excavation close to the city of Cébazat within the coronary heart of France (about 100 miles west of Lyon) of a tomb relationship to the 2nd century B.C., led by researcher Hervé Delhoofs, yielded an earthenware vessel that when held a most potent potable: Analysis of plant materials confirmed the presence of “biomarkers” for wine, resin and THC. Did the Gauls merely just like the style, or had been they concerned about a extra, effectively, holistic expertise? Researcher Nicolas Garnier informed Unfiltered each “medicinal use or recreational use” had been doable, and that the ethanol in wine made it a extra environment friendly substance for infusion than water. “The wine-based medicinal preparations are common,” he defined by way of e-mail. “Different recipes of many plants have been identified in tombs.”

The Christian Material

I don’t dispute come what may a possible Dionysian affect on Christianity, as with the entheogen theories offered all through The Immortality Key, nothing new right here, as i’ve talked about these myself in earlier books, as have many others. Notably, In an article titled “The Wine God in Palestine,” Professor Morton Smith, who was an American professor of historical historical past at Columbia University, provided appreciable proof for the affect of Dionysiac cult and fable on Jewish and early Christian materials. Smith felt that “the story of Jesus’ turning water into wine… was modeled on a myth about Dionysus told in a Dionysiac festival celebrated at Sidon.  A first or second century A.D. report of the festival shows striking similarities, even in wording, to the gospel material…”(Smith 1978).

It is value noting that indications of infused wines are indicated within the early Christian interval as effectively, in materials that Muraresku was sadly unaware of, and administered by Jesus himself within the 3-4th century textual content The Second Book of Jue.  As effectively as an account recognized within the Church Fathers condemnation of the Gnostic determine Marcus, which Muraresku does point out, and as I’ve mentioned in earlier books and within the article ‘Early Christianity’s Drug Fuelled Magic Rituals‘. It has even been lengthy advised that Jesus himself quaffed such a preparation in his own moment of doubt and pain.“ I mentioned these preparations and different potential Gnostic references to entheogens in a recent lecture for Aeon Byte.

A scenario which inserts with what was earlier mentioned in relation to Jewish infusions.

Some excessive biblical commentaries preserve that the gall and vinegar or myrrhed wine provided to our Saviour instantly earlier than his crucifixion was a preparation, possibly, of hemp, which was in these, in addition to in later occasions, sometimes given to criminals earlier than punishment or execution–whereas 700 years beforehand it’s spoken of… by the prophet Amos because the “ wine of the condemned.”

The Encyclopaedia Britannica: Or Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and General Literature, Volume 5 (1854): see related feedback in –The Boston Medical and Surgical Journal (1860).

Accusations of utilizing such infusions could have even been directed at Jesus in New Testament accounts. “The commonly attested connection between mantic behaviour and alcohol probably explains the reference in the New Testament that some people thought Jesus to be a wine-bibber (Matt 11:19). The use of drugs was so closely tied to mantic practice that the Greek word for ‘drug’ [Gk. pharmakea] eventually came to denote witchcraft (Gal 5:19-21)” (Noegel & Wheeler, 2010). The Immortality Key sees such early Christian exercise as derived from the sooner Dionysian, and I’ll depart it to readers of that guide to determine for themselves if there’s a connection, or it sits stronger with the prevailing Jewish custom of infused wines within the area.

I’ll say, that an equal case for a Mithraic influence has been suggested, in regards to the consumption of Haoma and ritual meals. The clear entheogenic references within the Mithras Liturgy and the same use to magical visionary producing ointments described in Gnostic accounts particularly comes to mind. This was fully ignored, in addition to lots of different potential Jewish influences that would stand as extra doubtless entry factors of entheogens into early Christianity.

In regards to wine utilized by Christian in rituals, the omission of The Second Book of Jue, from the Bruce Codex, significantly stands out, with its copious use of wine, incense, and as of but, unidentified entheogenic crops. The Second Book of Jue refers particularly to the as of but unidentified plant ‘cynocephalia‘ which was put into the mouths of members, Pliny mentions this similar plant for divination. Clearly a Gnostic reference to an entheogen of some variety! Pliny claims to have heard from Apion the Grammarian, infamous resident of Egypt, that the herb cynocephalia is understood in Egypt as osiritis, after the God Osiris, and is believed to be a supply of divination and a safety towards black magic. As Osiris has been related with Dionysus by historical and fashionable authors, its a disgrace this was not explored in The Immortality Key.  There are different unidentified crops within the Gnostic textual content as effectively, akin to kasdalanthos.

Murarsku does focus on the wine magic of the Gnostic determine, Marcus, which myself and others earlier than me have advised as a transparent entheogenic reference, and which I mentioned at size in my final 3 books. Again nary a point out of anybody who had beforehand trod this floor, save for his mentor Ruck. As effectively, when Muraresku discusses this materials with Charles Stang, Professor of Early Christian Thought and Director of the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard University, it turns into fairly clear that Muraresku solely has a superficial data of the important thing materials right here.

The Harvard Interview and the Gnostic ‘Love Potion’

On that be aware, what I’m blown away by right here, contemplating the numerous ball drops akin to this, and historic errors, as I’ve already mentioned, is the appreciable tutorial help the guide has obtained. Such as Charles Stang, the Harvard interviewer. Not solely does Stang apparently miss most of the outright errors offered in The Immortality Key, he was additionally unsuitable concerning the Gnostic Marcus’ wine, it was positively eucharistic in high quality it had ‘charis’ and is explicitly outlined as as a blood from a goddess. Stang states “But they charge Marcus specifically, not with a psychedelic Eucharist, but the use of a love potion”. However a studying from Irenaeus’ account of Marcus, beleaguers this level:

“Pretending to consecrate cups mixed with wine, and protracting to great length the word of invocation, he contrives to give them a purple and reddish color, so that Charis who is one of those that are superior to all things, should be thought to drop her own blood into that cup through means of his invocation, and that thus those who are present should be led to rejoice to taste of that cup, in order that, by so doing, the Charis, who is set forth by this magician, may also flow into them.”

In regards to “love potions” The individuals of this time had been effectively conscious of the crops round them, and the concept they contained not solely medicinal however magical properties, was widespread. It has lengthy been recognized that as a result of it was believed that “that certain drugs could secure the passionate love of another. Indian hemp, mandrake, opium, strychnos varieties, and others were greatly used as love charms and as stimulating aphrodisiacs” (Parsons, 1899).

Pliny, the Roman author, says the properties of those medicine turned manifest even when merely taken into the hand, however extra so when taken in dry wines; and that “overindulgence in them will cause death.” This proves that the majority of those substances had been little doubt stimulants and narcotics.(Parsons, 1899).

Love philtres often known as a “poculum amatory (literally ‘love-cup’) was both a stupefacient and an exciter that ‘impair[ed]the senses and stirs within … apparitions and frenzied loves’ … Concocted of various plants, herbs, and roots … [and]had been employed for centuries to ‘lull all pain and anger, and bring forgetfulness to every sorrow,’ as Helen of Troy famously lamented in Homer’s Odyssey” (Hatsis, 2015). Hatsis right here referring to the nepenthe mentioned earlier.

Moreover, Irenaeus particularly refers back to the “joining the buffooneries of Anaxilaus to the craftiness of the magi,”.  Anaxilaus, was banished from Rome in 28 BCE on expenses of magic, and Pliny referred to his writings on the “magical” properties of minerals, herbs, and different substances and derived medicine from them.  “Craftiness of the magi”  on this context refers particularly to the entheogenic cannabis infused wines used by the Zoroastrians

Other authors have famous the implicit Eucharistic relationship within the Marcus account as effectively 

Next to Simon Magus, Marcus was the Gnostic and heretic most infamous as a practitioner of the magical arts…. In performing the Eucharist he would change white wine positioned in three wine cups into three totally different colours … an alteration Marcus himself considered a manifestation of divine grace. Epiphanius attributes the change to an incantation muttered by Marcus whereas pretending to carry out the Eucharist. Hippolytus, who ascribes to Marcus’s feats partly to sleight-of-hand and partly to demons, on this case expenses that he furtively dropped some drug into the wine…

Irenaeus … states that Marcus had a well-known demon by whose assist he was capable of prophesy, and that he pretended to confer this present upon others. He additionally accuses Marcus of seducing girls via philtres and love potions which he compounded…

Other heretics with Gnostic views who had been accused of magic … had been the followers of Carpicrates, who employed incantations and spells, philtres and potions, who attracted spirits to themselves and made mild of the cosmic angels and who pretended to have nice energy over issues … by magic… (Thorndike, 1923).

As the Gnostic scholar Kurt Rudolph notes, Irenaeus’ account of the ceremony carried out by Marcus  “affords a remarkable and very singular insight into the Gnostic celebration of the Eucharist,” which they believed “effects a realization of the original oneness of the Pleroma” (Rudolph 1987). 

More not too long ago, Marcus’ Gnostic rites have been explored by Tom Hatsis, who’s cited in The Immortality Key on one other issues I’ll focus on,  however not Marcus. Hatsis notes that “we can be assured that he … knew about the properties of some powerful hallucinogens” and regardless of Irenaeus’ condemnation of such follow as merely a way of drugging girls for seduction, in relation to the Gnostic quest for “direct experience … he might have interpreted the ingestion of his potions as providing visionary or otherwise psyche-magical experience” (Hatsis, 2015).

Marcus entheogenically woke up “Charis” in each men and women with a particular trimma – a “mixed” wine. And right here I do imply “entheogenic” correct…. For Charis, the goddess of grace, would spill her blood – her essence – into the Eucharist, making it accessible to anybody who partook, a use of pharmaka each bit as entheogenic as oracles “inhaling” Apollo or Bacchants “drinking” Dionysus. (Hatsis, 2018)

Thus certainly, Love potions had been psychoactive in lots of instances and the outline from Irenaeus, with its blood of the Goddess bestowing ‘charis’ (grace) is explicitly Eucharistic.

An fascinating level right here in relation to The Immortality Key‘s hypothesis of a Dionysian connection can be found in the use of the term ‘charis’ which implies ‘grace’ in relation to the Dionysian Feat of Thyia. Thyia, was in keeping with custom was the primary priestess of Dionysus and her identify comes from the traditional verb θύω = I sacrifice or incense, as she was the primary to sacrifice to Dionysus there. The miracle of turning water into wine was the principle function of the feast of Thyia, (doubtless by the identical ingenious system of vessels and siphons, invented by the ingenious engineer named Heron, that was utilized in different Dionysian festivals).  What is fascinating right here in relation to Marcus name for ‘grace’ is that Plutarch gave the invocation, “O Dionysos,To thy holy temple come,To Elis with thy Graces“, as an invocation to vary the water into wine. 

Sadly Muraresku didn’t have the data to defend the purpose when Stang dismissed it as each a reference to an entheogen and a eucharist, which to me exhibits an precise lack of familiarity with what was written on this account. As I’ve written about this similar occasion in 3 of my earlier books, which Muraresku owns,  I do know it moderately effectively. Perhaps although, as I’m not cited in reference, and neither are any of the authors above, he didn’t see the extent of the small print, and skimmed it from Ruck’s account alone and didn’t even take a look at the supply doc? Such a key piece of his case as effectively……

As a pioneer of this explicit space of analysis, I discover this kind of amateurish posing, and probably not realizing the information mentioned, damaging to the precise search and identification, of the ‘lost sacrament’.

I’ve detailed the position of hashish in each the Old Testament and New Testament, a concept now substantiated by an archeological find, which Muraresku solely briefly discusses in his conclusion, in addition to potential influences from the Dionysion and Soma cults, in numerous books and articles. I largely agree with an total  entheogenic Eucharistic concept, and simply disagree on what substance, so  I cannot hassle with additional dialogue on these issues right here in relation to The Immortality Key.

To be truthful, I do suppose that Muraresku did dig up some extra issues with regard to potential references to Christians use of such infusions and his data of Greek helped him to know some passages in Corinthians in relation to this that I missed in my English alone studying of the textual content.

The Toad Eucharist 

Muraresku tries to level to the survival of the entheogenic wines of the Eucharist in an account of Toad wine, mentioned in Tom Hatsis’ effectively researched contribution to the sector of entheogenic research, The Witches Ointment; The Secret History of Psychedelic Magic (2015).  Muraresku describes a “blasphemous witch… that held a most unusual Eucharist” which held “the same Epiphany when Dionysus and Jesus debuted their miraculous wine” (Muraresku, 2020). He makes lots of this potion, way more actually than Hatsis did in his guide, and its clear from the dialog the three of us had on Hatsis’ podcast, “eucharist” was by no means supposed right here. Even worse, is the declare this Eucharistic expertise was derived from Bufotenin (5-HO-DMT) or (5-MeO-DMT). However, no European Toad is understood to include these compounds in giant sufficient portions to supply a psychoactive impact. Bufotenin is a chemical constituent within the poison and eggs of a number of species of toads belonging to the genus Bufo, nonetheless, the Colorado River toad (previously Bufo alvarius, now Incilius alvarius)  is the one toad species by which bufotenin is current in giant sufficient portions to obtain a psychoactive impact. Why did this truth go with out point out?

Giordano Bruno 

As additional proof of the survival of the ‘lost sacrament’ of the ‘religion with no name’, Muraresku factors to Giordano Bruno’s De gli eroici furori (The Heroic Enthusiasts, 1585) the place Circe of the hog potions brews up a imaginative and prescient bestowing treatment. Although right here Bruno is offered as an authentic suggestion, that is once more some extent myself and others have advised. Giardono Bruno (1548-1600), additionally demonstrated a familiarity with The Picatrix, copied from Islamic sources, and which may very well be seen as one of many foundational paperwork of the Hermetic custom within the West, and is filled with references to cannabis, opium, mandrake, and varied nightshades.

In his wonderful essay, “Drugs and the Occult,” the late Professor Dan Merkur notes that numerous “Renaissance esotericians referred to ambrosia, and nectar… [and]discussed the consumption of ambrosia and nectar in language that implied pagan communion” (Merkur, 2014). As  Merkur famous, Bruno, “candidly discussed the psychoactivity of nectar” (Merkur, 2014): “Nectar … distorts and saddens our nature, and perturbs our imagination, making some gay and without purpose, others unrestrainedly happy, some superstitiously devout, others vainly heroic, other choleric, others builders of great castles in the air” (Bruno, 1964). and once more “He lives the life of the gods, he feeds upon ambrosia and is drunk with nectar” (Bruno, 1964).

More apparently although, in relation to the concept there could have been a survival of the ‘lost sacrament’ as offered in The Immortality Key,  Merkur additionally famous the indications of infused wines, as nectar, in a wide range of texts, in addition to ointments in Francesco Colonnna’s Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, written in 1467.

Using the literary conference of a dream, Colona … offered fictionalized accounts of extraordinary visionary experiences. In the visionary world nymphs have magic ointments that rework individuals into birds and asses…. The protagonist, Poliphilo, discovers to his shock that the transformative ointment aroused him sexually…. Much later … there’s a sequence the place a priestess plucks three fruits of a purple rose bush … the fruits show psychoactive…. ‘No sooner had I tasted the miraculous and candy fruit than I felt my crude mind renewed … the religious and sacred communion of the prophetic fruits … Poliphilo is informed that “to pluck the roses was forbidden at the time, but the priests trafficked in them” (Merkur, 2014).

In her essay, ‘On the botanical content of Hypnerotomachia Poliphili,’ Sophia Rizopoulou identifies hashish in references to “Odoriferous substances … from frankincense trees (Boswellia sp.), myrrh (Commiphora sp.) [u6′] , benzoin, amygdaloid-benzoin or almondbenzoin … derived from the resin of Styrax spp … and Indian unguent … (attributed to Cannabis sativa L…) [these]provide an insight into exotic plant resources and ‘cosmopolitism’ … scents, which enhance sensory perception, [and]might also be a cue for a certain kind of behaviour, in those days” (Rizopoulou, 2016).

A Phallic god holds a scythe and is surrounded by photographs and sacred floating wine bottles filled with “ambrosia”, as a Bull is sacrificed, all very paying homage to the Dionysian mystreriess, from the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili.

We additionally see references to magical elixirs in Orlando Furioso, (Ariosto, 1516) the place  a personality is informed to drink an enchant-ed wine, that’s in comparison with the forbidden fruit of Eden; “drink and mighty marvels shall be seen”

In this regard, Francois Rabelais significantly involves thoughts, as he refers to himself immediately as a “master of the quintessence” a time period that makes direct reference to the spagyric alchemical artwork of plant tincturing. Rabelais, utilizing the identify of Dionysus mentor, Silenius, refers particularly to this determine in relation to stash packing containers for medicine – “Sileni of old,” says Rabelais, “were little boxes like those seen in apothecaries’ windows, painted outside with merry wanton figures as harpies, satyrs, bridled geese, horned hares, saddled ducks, flying goats, thiller, harts, and other such pictures, made at fancy to make people laugh – as Silenus master of the good Bacchus, was wont to do – but within were preserved fine drugs, balm, ambergris, musk, civet, precious stones, and other things of high value.”

In his story of Pantagruel, which is he story of the search for the oracle of the ‘holy bottle’, he secretly included 3 chapters on hashish, beneath the identify “the herb pantagruelion”. The Bottle is lastly situated in an Island in far off India, in an underground cave of Dionysus that was serviced by priestess. Rabelais and his association with cannabis was well known by later occultists. Importantly, Rabelais a Franciscan monk, particularly informed his reader, that if he mentally chewed on what was written, like a canine gnawing a bone for marrow, they might discover a “doctrine more abstruse which shall reveal to you most high ‘sacraments’ and horrific mysteries in what concerns our religion, as well as the state of our political and economic life” (Rabelais).

A situation that matches so effectively with a lot that Muraresku suggests in The Immortality Key, that together with a wealth of different materials with much more direct references to hashish and different medicine in Masonry, Magic and Alchemy, was sadly missed. For a extra full examination of this, see my very own Liber 420.

Catholics administering entheogens? 

Probably the place I diverge probably the most from Muraresku, stands together with his suggestion that the administration of entheogenic substances needs to be trusted to the lay brothers of the Catholic Church. As he defined within the Harvard interview with Charles Stang:

…I write, on the very finish of the guide, I hope that they’d be pleased with this investigation. Because at my coronary heart, I nonetheless contemplate myself a great Catholic boy. The solely motive I went to school was to check classics. So it’s onerous for me to write down this and discuss this with out acknowledging the Jesuits who put me right here. So I don’t write this to antagonize them or the church, the individuals who, once more, ushered me into this self-discipline and into these questions. I write it cognizant of the truth that the Eucharist doesn’t work for a lot of, many individuals.

And so I cite a Pew ballot, for instance, that claims one thing like 69% of American Catholics don’t consider in transubstantiation… To be a Catholic is to consider that you’re actually consuming the blood of Christ to change into Christ. That’s the promise in John’s gospel, in John 6:54-55, that I quote within the guide.

So when you don’t suppose that you’re actually consuming divine blood, what’s the level of faith? Now, I’ve by no means completed them myself, however I’ve talked to many, many individuals who’ve had expertise with psychedelics. And I’ve listened to the volunteers who’ve gone by these experiences…. what I hear from individuals, together with atheists, like Dina Bazer, who participated in these Hopkins NYU trials is that she felt like on her one and solely dose of psilocybin that she was bathed in God’s love. You know, it’s an atheist utilizing theological language to explain what occurred to her. And she talks about sort of being born once more, one other promise from John’s gospel. And she talks concerning the visions that reworked the way in which she thinks about herself.

And so in a few of these psychedelic trials, beneath the correct situations, I do see real spiritual experiences. I see one thing that’s occurring to individuals. And on the similar time, after I see a thirst, particularly in younger individuals, for actual expertise, and I see so many Catholics who don’t consider in transubstantiation, clearly, what involves my thoughts is how, if in any respect, can psychedelics improve religion or reinvent Christianity. And so I don’t suppose that psychedelics are coming to interchange the Sunday Eucharist. That’s, simply absurd.

If you might be drawn to psychedelics, in my thoughts, it means you’re most likely drawn to contemplative mysticism. And if it’s one factor Catholicism does very, very effectively, it’s contemplative mysticism. The sort of mysticism I’ve all the time been interested in, just like the rule of Saint Benedict and the Trappist monks and the Cistercian monks. And so if there’s a place for psychedelics, I’d suppose it might be in a type of sacred containers inside monastic life, or pilgrims who go to certainly one of these monastic facilities, for instance. (Muraresku, 2021)

I’m going to state proper right here, that there isn’t any means in my thoughts, that any relationship between the Lay brothers of the Catholic Church, needs to be entrusted with a weak inhabitants of any type. And the billions of dollars in courtroom prices making an attempt to defend themselves for his or her legal acts towards youngsters and which they’ve paid out to their numerous victims is just not the one motive.

In regards to the entheogens, in my books, I’ve tied the disappearance of them by the rise of Catholicism, starting with the prohibition and suppression of the Gnostic and Pagan cults of the traditional world that used them; persevering with with the burning of the witches, the clever girls who healed with herbs, within the medieval and renaissances interval; and culminating with the destruction of indigenous cultures world broad that utilized medicines just like the sacred mushroom, grandfather peyote, Mother Aya, the Iboga of the ancestors, and different sacred substances, changing them with their false and placebo Eucharists of bread and wine.

What Muraresku does right here is in a really possible way additional disrespect the data and strategies of indigenous cultures that continued on with these strategies of entheogenic rites, regardless of the harshest of persecution from Catholic influences. We see the continued persecution of entheogenic religions within the Amazon basin persevering with to at the present time actually. Letting the Catholics have any say over the usage of entheogens within the fashionable world, is extra Western chauvinism and White Privilege.

I feel right here, lack of precise expertise, and Muraresku’s ‘psychedelic virginity’ change into extra seen. As Muraresku acknowledges fairly continuously, he isn’t “Experienced”. Like this someway signifies his objectivity, and lack of biases. However, as we will see by the continued makes an attempt to tie in Eleusis with the Christian mysteries, and ignoring a lot clear proof relating to the precise position of entheogens within the historical world, The Immortality Key itself, is a testomony to biases.

More over, the continuous makes an attempt to tie within the kykeon with the hypothesised entheogenic eucharist, solely did a disservice to the themes of each. The Catelonia Kukeon materials would have been of higher influence in a guide focussed on Eleusis and increasing on the proof offered in The Road to Eleusis.  Just because the proposed psychedelic sacrament of Christianity would have been higher approached by taking a look at extra apparent and extra native proof from the area.

This psychedelic virginity additionally presents itself in the way in which he switches by an enormous array of candidates in his seek for the misplaced sacrament of the ‘religion with no name’, equally contemplating, ergot extracts, henbane, opium, toad venom, nightshades, hashish and so forth, all through the guide. Suggesting its solely when he discovers the true sacrament he’ll break his vow of virginity….. However, for me, if the early Christians had been ingesting henbane wine, or ergot infusions, I’d go for the numerous safer candidates we all know of at the moment. Hopefully The Immortality Key, doesn’t result in amateurish experiments with ergot beers, and henbane wine, because the outcomes right here may very well be lethal. “The cook must taste the soup” because the outdated saying goes.

Psychedelic virgins advising on the administration of entheogens, makes as a lot sense as virgins advising on intercourse, and we will see the crippling issue the Catholic Church has performed on humanity there as effectively.

Good and Bad

In this respect, The Immortality Key and Muraresku each, are a double edged sword, popularizing the subject with one swing, and discrediting it with a poorly thought out speculation, and probably not realizing the territory,  with the opposite. The precise scholarship that’s current within the guide, would possibly make one fascinating article if it had been actually flushed out from the Dan Brown journey journey story it’s buried inside. I’d say I’ve offered extra onerous knowledge on this response to The Immortality Key, than is offered in it.  Much of the guide is stuffed with flowery descriptions of individuals and locations akin to this:

“As I approached the Benedictine Abbey of Sant Pers de Galligantis, I pause to enjoy the February sun breaching the cypress trees and reflecting off the bright limestone ashlars of the rectangular facade. Under a grand rosette the church’s main entrance features five archivolts that recess into the medieval darkness. Where they meet spireling columns a few feet overhead, stone gargoyles beckon me into a chilly, damp interior” (Muraresku, 2020).

I can’t consider every other guide on entheogenic historical past, which units itself towards a narration of worldwide journey and thriller sleuthing. In this regard a complete a complete chapter is spent on looking for an artifact, that Ruck had seen an illustration of, which appeared to point out a mushroom included with different crops being combined into wine. As it turned out after pages of intrigue, the illustrator had taken some liberties with elements of the picture that had been lacking from the terra cotta authentic. This all may have been summarized in a paragraph, if it was even value mentioning in any respect. Alas, as a analysis, I do know what its prefer to spend infinite hours, chasing what seems to be a lifeless finish, however I’ve by no means thought to make a chapter about it.

I feel a lot of the alleged 12 years of analysis Muraresku put into The Immortality Key, could effectively have been spent studying and analyzing the approach and construction of Dan Brown’s bestsellers, and Muraresku himself acknowledged the affect right here in his Harvard interview. However like different creator’s whose affect will be felt all through The Immortality Key, Dan Brown goes with out point out as effectively.

Likely, this journey story side that has led to the books excellent success, and on this regards, hats off to the advertising and marketing staff behind this undertaking — a primary time creator, with a guide that was promoting effectively even earlier than its launch date. I’d prefer to see a guide on that! The Immortality Key has taken these subjects into the mainstream, and made this obscure data, standard data, and that in itself is an unimaginable accomplishment.

I suppose, copious footnotes and citations, can lavatory a guide down for the lay reader, and its clear that The Immortality Key is written for the lay reader, and represents extra of a Dan Brown model journey story, than an encyclopedic supply that intends to really doc the ‘lost sacrament’ of the ‘faith with no identify”. With no bibliography an insufficient index,( as an illustration Pliny seems a number of occasions, within the guide, however as soon as within the index) what’s shocking to me, is the acceptance of it as a tutorial contribution to the sector of entheogneic historical past, by numerous outstanding teachers, contemplating the numerous errors and different points I’ve run by right here.

Wouter Hanegraaff a Professor of History of Hermetic Philosophy and associated currents on the University of Amsterdam, who was not too long ago cited on a serious write up on The Immortality Key that appeared on the pages of Haaretz said “One mistake I wouldn’t make is to align myself with figures from the psychedelic counterculture, which is a mistake Ruck made in ‘Road to Eleusis‘” , But then in the Haaretz piece he was quoted in, written by another academic, Ido Hartogsohn, we see dubious theories such as Benny Shannon’s Burning DMT wealthy acacia bush and Moses story, Allegro’s Mushroom Jesus, and Wasson’s simply dismissible Soma mushroom concept, take precedent over the precise archeology of hashish out of Arad, Jerusalem, which was give just a few temporary sentences within the piece, compared to the area devoted to those varied fancies within the article. Where is the tutorial essential evaluation right here? Its not coming from the lecturers, who see Muraresku, who holds varied levels, as the brand new blood on this vein. Indeed, why is it left to a determine type the “psychedelic counterculture”, akin to myself, to set the file straight right here?

I requested Wouter if he had learn The Immortality Key, and he had not, I critically surprise how true of that is of the varied students who’ve plugged the guide? As figures like Wasson, Hoffman and different colleagues of Ruck don’t match as “figures from the psychedelic counterculture”, I do surprise if Wouter was referring to somebody akin to myself and Ruck’s earlier endorsement of my work. Although I’ve corresponded with Wouter, he has has been reluctant to remark immediately alone work on entheogens and the occult, a topic we’ve each written on. Generally I discover his work very scholarly and correct, though I believed his current suggestion of psilocybin rich scarab beetles slightly far-out and baseless. 

In my opinion, a few of these students and their pet theories are what holds up precise progress in direction of the historic details of the matter. Wasson’s Soma Divine Mushroom of Immortality comes significantly to thoughts right here, as does Allegro’s Sacred Mushroom and the Cross, together with its varied offshoots, akin to Jerry Brown’s The Psychedelic Gospels: The Secret History of Hallucinogens in Christianity, or Ruck’s co-authored The Apples of Apollo: Pagan and Christian Mysteries of the Eucharist.  Sadly,  a lot of Ruck’s work has been primarily based on Wasson’s concept on the fly agaric mushroom as soma, which is easily dismissed.  As I famous, my work discussing this appears to have been the supply of some lower than pleasant emotions between Carl and myself. I’ve mentioned at size how this sort of material has effected academic credibility on these topics. The Immortality Key solely provides immensely to the confusion on the subject right here, and leads the reader away from way more strong archeological and textual materials, however extra importantly, details, within the seek for entheogens within the historical world.

As, anybody studying this may increasingly have famous, there are some onerous emotions, I can  not deny this.  I’ve felt slighted ever since Brian and Graham Hancock had been on the Joe Rogan speaking about biblical hashish, and did not even point out my identify. The suggestion that Biblical figures had been utilizing entheogens, in topical preparations, wine infusions, and as an incense, is one thing I’ve been writing about for many years, and Muraresku had 3 of my books in his library on this, ordering my guide Sex, Drugs, Violence and the Bible, which Ruck reviewed, immediately from me.  Muraresku informed me he was impressed with the “scholarship” in Cannabis and the Soma Solution, and he talked about seeing the Times evaluation Ruck wrote, framed on the wall of Ruck’s residence….. Moreover, this data has garnered worldwide media consideration, in respected information sources just like the BBCThe Guardian,The Washington PostVice, and different media. Nary a point out of any of this, despite the fact that connections to Dionysian mysteries, Soma and wine infusions are explicitly mentioned within the 3 books of mine Muraresku has. There appears to have been an actual want to current this data as first time proof….

And when you suppose that is simply my problem, then contemplate the phrases of Dr. Michael A. Rinella:

I don’t see how a guide like this may very well be printed in 2020 and but someway lack a single reference to a scholarly work on nearly the identical topic, my very own Pharmakon: Plato, Drug Culture, and Identity (Lexington, 2010). Instead it appears to be a rehash of arguments of The Road to Eleusis, a piece initially printed within the late Nineteen Seventies with some extra materials on the early Christian period… (Rinella, 2020)

When you learn Mursresku’s mentor, Ruck’s evaluation of Rinella’s guide, Pharmakon: Plato, Drug Culture, and Identity  its onerous to consider that didn’t sit on the shelf subsequent to my three volumes, or that Ruck didn’t counsel it to Muraresku, in his alleged 12 years of analysis:

Rinella’s dialogue of the character and prevalence of medicine within the Classical Age of Athens is a necessary context for a serious theme within the Platonic dialogues and gives a helpful background for any scholar of the nice thinker’s works. As Rinella astutely demonstrates, Plato seems to have been the primary to deal with the issue of drug induced ecstasy as harmful to the well-ordered functioning of society, resulting in probably legal conduct and non-rational modes of thought, and the thinker’s answer to the issue because the ‘noble lie’ nonetheless survives in our present drug coverage. — Carl A. P. Ruck, Boston University

Perhaps it’s a worse situation for those who had been cited, as after I despatched Prof. Patrick McGovern, who performs a number one supportive position all through The Immortality Key, a duplicate of this text, he responded:

Thanks for passing in your “review.” I nonetheless haven’t obtained a duplicate from Brian, so I can’t actually remark as but. But if he did omit my concept of “Central Asian” soma [a cannabis-ephedra wine infusion] in his guide, that makes me suppose that he’s largely a promoter of his personal outdated ergot concept. I hope that he no less than took a skeptical perspective in direction of the obtainable chemical proof for such drinks. Moreover, I sincerely hope that any position that I’ve within the guide is just not overly supportive, particularly now that he’s sitting down with purveyors of extraterrestrial theories of historical historical past/archaeology. Have you completed joint movies/interviews with him?—he appears intent on producing as a lot publicity for the guide as he can.

With this stuff in thoughts, and years of glowing statements in correspondence from Muraresku, and social media feedback like this, and nary a point out within the guide, who wouldn’t be somewhat miffed?

Extremely fascinating throughout. You’re a real scholar, Chris (2017)

Fascinating stuff, Chris. Absolutely! Does a lot of your weblog materials make it into Liber 420? It’s very complete stuff. (2018)

I’m making my means by Liber 420 and am mightily impressed by the depth of scholarship to date. (2018)

Extremely fascinating throughout. You’re a real scholar, Chris. Might you be concerned about being interviewed for the guide I’m writing in the intervening time? I discover your and our pal, Tom Hatsis’, scholarship simply completely fascinating. (2018)

I do love your work, in fact. And very a lot wish to market it. (2020)

Chris… has been mining this territory far longer than me. And expertly is aware of his means across the rabbit holes of historical past ( 2021).

With the success of The Immortality Key, my writer, requested me to get a plug for Muraresku, and I did reluctantly ask. Either his views on my work and analysis modified, or he was not into aiding a researcher with concepts that competed together with his personal, as he didn’t oblige the request. I additionally don’t think Brian enjoyed the podcast we did together, as communication drifted away after that, even in response to some direct questions.

Further,  who wouldn’t really feel uncredited in a guide about Dionysian miracles in Christianity and infused wines, when their very own a lot earlier guide had materials like this, which Muraresku had in his possession:

The supposedly magical act of fixing water into wine, was not a brand new one, and was additionally attributed to the normal Greek God Dionysus, whose worship within the Middle East had been occurring for hundreds of years. The encyclopedic Jonathan Ott, states that Dionysus is “erroneously regarded to be the god only of alcoholic Inebriation owing to a misunderstanding of the natures of Greek Wines, potent infusions of numerous Psychoactive plants, in which the alcohol served as a preservative, rather than as inebriating principle, and which often required dilution to be drunk safely”(Ott,1995). Such an infusion, containing hemp, myrrh and wine, was recorded by Democritus (c.a. 460 B.C.), it seemingly produced delirium, visionary states and “immoderate laughter”(Emboden 1972). That the psychoactive concoctions referred to required dilution is notable, as such a potent answer mixed with a candy syrupy juice extract, may conceivably have been combined with the water and impressed the friends with its intoxicating results.

The making of such potent plant extracts was effectively inside each Essene and Gnostic capabilities at the moment…  Similar to the potent Greek infusions talked about above is the Biblical “strong drink” (shekar): “An inebriating Potion described in the Old Testament; but distinct from Wine; probably a Soporific or visionary vinous infusion, analogous to ancient Greek Wines, of one or many Psychoactive plants”(Ott 1995).  (Bennett & McQueen, 2001).

Now with The Immortality Key dominating the dialog, I’ve felt the necessity to crash the social gathering and set issues again on track. If the actual goal is to search out the ‘lost sacrament’ of the ‘religion with no name’, then this will probably be welcome readability on the problem. If its to promote books, perhaps the appreciation simply gained’t be there.

For those that want to write this off as mere ‘sour grapes’, there are definitely some right here that I’ve pressed. But on this seek for the misplaced sacramental elixir,  its is bitter grapes that may give us give us wine, and it’s wine, that this misplaced sacrament is infused in, so the remainder of the equation regards the id of that. I fortunately stand by what I’ve written right here in that respect, regardless of any reactions. I really feel assured that solely extra archeological affirmation will seem over time confirming a lot of what I’ve written right here and elsewhere, because it has during the last decade.  Nothing to private right here from my finish, its simply that’s the way in which the kukeon crumbles.

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