VIDEO: Is This Ancient Psychedelic Brew The New Wonder Drug?
Welcome to my latest video presentation. Below is a condensed transcript. For additional details and several charts, hit the “play” button on my video.
Neil deGrasse Tyson, pop-culture astrophysicist, recently posed the question: “How many plants out there remain undiscovered simply because we don’t have enough people saying, ‘Now, let’s smoke that, let’s smoke this, let’s smoke this?’ I mean, there’s gotta be.”
Fact is, human beings don’t simply rely on plants for food. For millennia, plants have enabled people to alter their consciousness.
LSD, psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms) and other “classic psychedelics” no longer hog the spotlight. A host of other psychotropic substances are transitioning to the medical and psychiatric mainstream.
These drugs can be synthesized in the lab, but they originally derive from plants. One such drug, ayahuasca, is becoming especially prominent. The drug is used to make a tea that’s deployed in spiritual and religious rituals in South America. Researchers are discovering its medicinal and psychological benefits.
New public companies are coming to the fore to exploit ayahuasca, just as they’ve done for LSD, psilocybin, and marijuana. Big Pharma, institutional investors, and venture capitalists are taking notice, too. Could ayahuasca become the new medical marijuana?
Many mind-bending substances extracted from plants have been used for thousands of years by native cultures. They’re getting re-discovered by contemporary society. Many of these substances are ingested via drink, rather than smoke, but deGrasse Tyson’s point is well taken. The “green exploration” continues.
The divine within…
Psychedelic plants used for medicinal purposes are now being rebranded as “etheogenic plants.” The word etheogenic literally means “creating the divine within.”
Official documents presented to the Oakland (CA) City Council during that city’s eventually successful effort to decriminalize psychedelics explains that etheogenic plants are those that have been used by indigenous peoples, likely since the dawn of humanity, for the purpose of “healing, knowledge, creativity and spiritual connection.”
Oakland’s resolution regarding etheogenics encompasses “the full spectrum of plants, fungi, and natural materials deserving reverence and respect from the perspective of the individual and the collective.”
In June 2019, Oakland became the first city in California, and the second in the country (after Denver in May 2019), to decriminalize magic mushrooms. San Francisco followed suit in 2022. Oregon and Colorado have done likewise on a statewide level, in 2020 and 2022 respectively.
In October 2023, in a setback for the reform movement, California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) vetoed legislation that would have legalized the possession, preparation, obtainment, or transportation of specific quantities of psychedelics for individuals aged 21 and older. But advocates have vowed to press on, with a statewide initiative in November 2024.
Ayahuasca’s main ingredient is DMT (dimethyltryptamine), a very powerful hallucinogenic chemical.
Ayahuasca has dramatically increased in popularity in the U.S. and worldwide in recent years, but it remains illegal in this country at the federal level. Whether in the U.S. or abroad, it’s typically ingested at ayahuasca retreats led by a shaman, although it can be purchased for solo use.
Unsupervised ayahuasca “trips” are not recommended by health professionals, even for those experienced with psychedelics, because of the drug’s potency.
While a handful of groups have claimed ayahuasca as part of their religious ceremonies to secure immunity from prosecution, many have traveled to Costa Rica, Peru, and Brazil where ayahuasca retreats are legal. Ayahuasca tourism has become all the rage and it’s developing into a big global business.
Supporters of this medicinal brew claim that it is a profoundly cathartic experience, in which the effects of many years of “therapy” can be achieved with one trip. Others say that it is a way to quickly meet “God,” whatever that word means for you.
The upshot: The movement to legalize marijuana and psychedelics is getting broader with each passing day, in turn opening new investment opportunities.
To learn more about these trends, I suggest you read my new book: The Wide World of Weed and Psychedelics.
This concise, clear, easy-to-read book reveals everything you need to know about the wide world of legal weed and psychedelics.
My book is your definitive guide for making money in the psychotropic revolution. This megatrend is poised for a breakout year in 2023; the time to get aboard is now. Click here for your copy.
John Persinos is the editorial director of Investing Daily.
This story originally appeared on Investing Daily.