"The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross"

Discussion in 'Books' started by Gregonzo, Jan 20, 2005.

  1. Gregonzo

    Gregonzo Member

    This is a book by the late John M. Allegro, It gives a pretty unique theory for the origins of christianity. Allegro believed that christianity grew from a pyschadelic mushroom cult, that hid their manna a.k.a. the forbidden apple, a.ka. the communion bread a.ka. " Aminita Muscaria Mushrooms" and that consuming them created all the "prophetic texts" we read in the bible.......it's an off the wall theory but a fun read....
  2. drumminmama

    drumminmama Super Moderator Lifetime Supporter

    I 've been seeking this one. Is it still in print or do I need to scour libraries?
  3. charbono

    charbono Member

  4. goldmund

    goldmund Member

    I saw this book years ago in a small public library in Marin Co. I have been looking for it again ever since. I think I saw some online chapters somewhere sometime back. A really interesting book. I wanted to find out more about a quasi-Russian Orthodox group of churches in Siberia that use fly argaric as the Body of Christ. They also have fresco/icons in their churches that have all sorts of psychedelic reference. I think that in this case it was just a blend of native Siberian shamanism with the newer Orthodoxy, which arrived relatively recently, sorta like what you get in Oaxaca, etc.
  5. so it wasnt the holy spirit? *sigh*
  6. goldmund

    goldmund Member

    I just read some interesting material on this book and its author John Allegro. Apparently, he was one of a select few biblical scholars given access to the Dead Sea scrolls at Qumran as part of the original translation effort. While taking part in this project, he became aware of some Christian mystery cults whose worship centered around the fly agaric mushroom as a symbol of the phalis.
    Allegro did not look at this favorably, and was trying to use this information to discredit some of the ideas of the early church. So it is neither a pro-entheogen or pro-Christian treatise, but it may be interesting for further information. I wonder if there has been any follow up research on this subject.
  7. gnrm23

    gnrm23 Senior Member

    another one of the original group of "dead sea scroll scholars" to generate controversy was dr shonfield with his _the passover plot_

    i must say that i find shonfield's musings more encompass a more like scenario than allegro's...

    now, a larger group of "religion scholars" have been more accepting of r. gordon wasson's writings on the identity of the "soma" of the hindu hymnal _rg veda_ as Amanita muscaria...
    but then again, that's "them idolatrous hindoos over there" & not "us one-true-faith Xtians over here" ...

    ummm ymmv...
  8. goldmund

    goldmund Member

    I had some interesting pics on my hard drive related to this subject, but couldn't figure out till now how to post in the gallery. Anyways, I can't remember where either of them came from, only that I pulled them off a site(s) that I can no longer remember when I was doing a casual search on this subject a long time ago.

    Both the fresco and the icon treat the fly agaric mushroom with some importance and I am sure they probably had earlier prototypes. In the icon, there seems to be some relation between the mushrooms and the four evangelists, and it is obviously from an Eastern Orthodox country. I remember it being from the 18thC (?). Usually when they have Christ like this, the Icon is called "Christ Pantocrator" or "Christ, Ruler over All". Christ is usually depicted as ruling over something:

    I have absolutely no idea who is depicted in this fresco, nor do I have any idea as to the symbolism portrayed here. All can remember about it was that it was from a Christian church (possibly Gnostic, see below). The style obviously looks either very old, or very primitive, or both. You can just barely make out a dark man with a loin cloth (and possibly a halo?) to the right of the mushroom cluster. You can also see a servant wrapped around the mushrooms, possibly equating amanita muscaria with the tree of knowledge and/or with aesclepious' staff (the original staff only had one snake), both of which were highly valued and symbolic of Christ in gnostic circles. For some reason you can see the ribs of what looks like the female. Interesting stuff.


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