Visionary Plant Consciousness: The Shamanic Teachings of the Plant World

Excerpts & Samples

By J. P. Harpignies

Publisher : Inner Traditions/Bear & Company

ABOUT J. P. Harpignies

J. P. Harpignies
J. P. Harpignies is associate producer of the national Bioneers conference ( and coproducer and founder of the Eco-Metropolis conference ( in New York City. He is the author of Political Ecosystems and Double Helix Hubris, the editor of Visionary Plan More...



23 leading experts reveal the ways that psychoactive plants allow nature’s “voice” to speak to humans and what this communication means for our future

• Presents the specific “human-plant interconnection” revealed by visionary plants

• Explores the relevance of plant-induced visions and shamanic teachings to humanity’s environmental crisis

• With contributions from Terence McKenna, Andrew Weil, Wade Davis, Michael Pollan, Alex Grey, Jeremy Narby, Katsi Cook, John Mohawk, Kat Harrison, and others

Visionary plants have long served indigenous peoples and their shamans as enhancers of perception, thinking, and healing. These plants can also be important guides to the reality of the natural world and how we can live harmoniously in it.

In Visionary Plant Consciousness, editor J. P. Harpignies has gathered presentations from the Bioneers annual conference of environmental and social visionaries that explore how plant consciousness affects the human condition. Twenty-three leading ethnobotanists, anthropologists, medical researchers, and cultural and religious figures such as Terence McKenna, Andrew Weil, Wade Davis, Michael Pollan, Alex Grey, Jeremy Narby, Katsi Cook, John Mohawk, and Kat Harrison, among others, present their understandings of the nature of psychoactive plants and their significant connection to humans. What they reveal is that these plants may help us access the profound intelligence in nature--the “mind of nature”--that we must learn to understand in order to survive our ecologically destructive way of life.
"The uniquely knowledgeable and inspiring voices in this book provide an insightful multidisciplinary context for understanding the once and future history of human relationships with sacred plants. As the beneficial applications of psychedelics continue to re-gain credibility in mainstream science and medicine, these voices offer necessary clues about how the states of mind that sacred plants engender can be conscientiously integrated into our selves and society."
Rick Doblin, Ph.D., Founder and President, Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies

“Humans have long considered psychoactive plants as teachers. This book seeks to inform Westerners about these powerful plants and about the shamans who know how to use them. Their words are clear and simple and often based on personal experience. The result is an accessible book packed with knowledge.”
Jeremy Narby, author of The Cosmic Serpent

"This book, which casts a clear light on visionary plants and their proper use, is recommended for those interested in the growing awareness of intelligence within the natural kingdom."
Richard D. Wright, New Age Retailer, Trade Show 2007 Issue

"I commend this volume as a thought-provoking examination of the thesis that our planet’s well-being could depend upon our respectful, creative use of visionary plants. Based on the evidence that these plants have long served indigenous shamans as effective methods of enhancing intuitive perceptions, engendering healing powers, and stimulating creative thinking, this book also makes a timely case for decriminalizing their responsible use."
Timothy White, founding editor of Shaman’s Drum, Shaman's Drum No. 74, 2007

" . . . a valuable tool in understanding the historical use, and misuse, of hallucinogenic plants. . . . offers a wealth of information that is fascinating and made me want to explore deeper."
Smokey Trudeau, Pan Gaia, Jan 2008