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Old 30th November 2012, 11:12 PM   #121
Dinwar
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
I will get to your valid points in due course, just felt it necessary to post that previous comment first.
First, please don't tell me what you're going to do. Just do it. Take as much time as you'd like--this is a forum, after all--but don't waste my time and yours telling me you're going to do something. There's already a poster here that does that, and you wouldn't believe the damage it's done to his credibility.

Second, you stated "That page is very lacking in scientific studies and references." I've provided them. In point of fact, outside of your initial post, I've provided ALL OF THEM. For BOTH sides (if you'd read my post, you'd know that). The side lacking scientific studies is your side. And even if you threw every medical journal in the world at me, you'd STILL lack valid research, because the facts about what this fungus does to the human brain aren't the question. The question is "Did humans ingest this fungus in sufficient quantities to impact their evolutionary history?" Once we determine if they actually ate the stuff, we can THEN discuss what, if any, impact it had on humanity. The cart goes after the horse.
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Old 30th November 2012, 11:17 PM   #122
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
Cave art. Numerous archaic art portrays mushrooms as a pivotal influence in human evolution. You only have to look at the artwork in ancient caves and the morphological drawings they chose to draw to portray the importance of mushrooms, and other related psychedelics, to the human record. I can supply voluminous evidence of this if you require it.
Really? All I know about is is a couple of cave paintings in some cave in Algeria which might be,... what,... 10000 years old? These give the impression of representing ceremonial use (like shamans) and would do exactly zero to support your notions. Also, by that time we had been modern humans for about 190000 years.

Do you have anything better than that?
Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
The half life and pharmacological profile of 4-HO-DMT is similar to that of DMT. It's pretty much a natural neurochemical. DMT is found naturally in the blood of humans, and is a ubiquitous scientific fact throughout the entire mammalian world.
For someone apparently rather familiar with Erowid you are remarkably uninformed about DMT. The half life of DMT is damn close to diddly squat. I don't know what the half life of psilocybin/psilocyn is but one can pretty much count on approximately a 6 hour trip (with a nice, serotonergic feeling of well being afterwards).

DMT basically breaks down nearly as soon as it hits your gut due to the monoamine oxidases which are found there. This is why a modern DMT psychonaut might smoke it (big dose reaching the brain quickly) and the trip will last minutes (even though monoamine oxidases in the gut are bypassed, there are plenty of others which quickly break it down). This is why the other way someone might consume it is as ayahuasca (or pharmahuasca) which involves consuming DMT together with a MAOi (this increases the half life by slowing down the breakdown by these enzymes).

As for it being a natural neurochemical, it is,... kind of. However, it is hardly plentiful and definitely not something which you'd easily find in the blood (if at all). When the kiddies try to do a DMT extraction to trip on the stuff they choose certain grasses or various plants. They never head out to the butcher shop! DMT apparently can be found in the nervous system as possibly more than some intermediate step in an unrelated pathway (I need to hunt down some references for this --if you have primary sources of your own, I'd be thankful) but it is not in great quantities and it certainly doesn't seem to be a major component of any neurotransmitter system*, as far as I know.



* Obviously it does a pretty good job at ticking some serotonin receptors but the major neurotransmitter involved there would seem to be serotonin.
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Old 30th November 2012, 11:17 PM   #123
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Patience my young padawan.
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Old 30th November 2012, 11:28 PM   #124
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
Patience my young padawan.
Bit of advice: don't talk down to us. Some of us, believe it or not, actually know a thing or two about some of these topics. The quote above implies a lack of interest in learning on your part--you appear to want to preach the Good News to us unwashed heathens. Not exactly a good way to engage in a scientific discussion, which is what you said you wanted.

cosmicaug, the halflife issue started when I started talking about osteological studies and the like to determine if the fungus had been consumed. For my part, I'm sure that any psychoactive compounds would be long gone after a few thousand years. My question is if there are any OTHER tracers we can look at. Does this fungus absorb, say, potassium at a higher than background rate? Does it leach phosphorus from you? Does it preferentially utilize one isotope of nitrogen? That sort of thing. We can detect how much methane was in ancient atmospheres--I'd think that drugs in an old body shouldn't be TOO hard to find out. But I'll be honest, I'm out of my depth here. I do carnivores and ecology. If you know anything that would help, I'd appreciate it!
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Old 30th November 2012, 11:58 PM   #125
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Originally Posted by cosmicaug View Post
For someone apparently rather familiar with Erowid you are remarkably uninformed about DMT. The half life of DMT is damn close to diddly squat. I don't know what the half life of psilocybin/psilocyn is but one can pretty much count on approximately a 6 hour trip (with a nice, serotonergic feeling of well being afterwards).

DMT basically breaks down nearly as soon as it hits your gut due to the monoamine oxidases which are found there. This is why a modern DMT psychonaut might smoke it (big dose reaching the brain quickly) and the trip will last minutes (even though monoamine oxidases in the gut are bypassed, there are plenty of others which quickly break it down). This is why the other way someone might consume it is as ayahuasca (or pharmahuasca) which involves consuming DMT together with a MAOi (this increases the half life by slowing down the breakdown by these enzymes).

As for it being a natural neurochemical, it is,... kind of. However, it is hardly plentiful and definitely not something which you'd easily find in the blood (if at all). When the kiddies try to do a DMT extraction to trip on the stuff they choose certain grasses or various plants. They never head out to the butcher shop! DMT apparently can be found in the nervous system as possibly more than some intermediate step in an unrelated pathway (I need to hunt down some references for this --if you have primary sources of your own, I'd be thankful) but it is not in great quantities and it certainly doesn't seem to be a major component of any neurotransmitter system*, as far as I know.

Glad to see someone else knows their basic pharmacology facts. You may find some of my previous threads and posts on the matter of DMT informative. Might even be able to help you with the references you are looking for.

Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post

I wrote the long writeup (The Phalaris Workshop) you may have read online about pharmahuasca from phalaris grass, including the spectra of various strains of phalaris after I got them tested at university. Phalaris aquatica and Phalaris tuberosa turned out the most fruitful.

Strange to think some of us walk over fields literally full of DMT on a nearly daily basis.

I started numerous thread before on this exact subject, I can't remember their title though.
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Old 1st December 2012, 03:50 AM   #126
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Originally Posted by stankape View Post
and you are also correct about the transverse logic, you can't use modern humans (who have the modern brain) as a baseline for measuring the affects of mushrooms on primitive man. That's akin to saying 'couldn't the turbo boost have been the major factor in automobile evolution? I mean look at the ferrari!" kitt
ftfy
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Old 1st December 2012, 03:58 AM   #127
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Bit of advice: don't talk down to us. Some of us, believe it or not, actually know a thing or two about some of these topics. The quote above implies a lack of interest in learning on your part--you appear to want to preach the Good News to us unwashed heathens. Not exactly a good way to engage in a scientific discussion, which is what you said you wanted.

cosmicaug, the halflife issue started when I started talking about osteological studies and the like to determine if the fungus had been consumed. For my part, I'm sure that any psychoactive compounds would be long gone after a few thousand years. My question is if there are any OTHER tracers we can look at. Does this fungus absorb, say, potassium at a higher than background rate? Does it leach phosphorus from you? Does it preferentially utilize one isotope of nitrogen? That sort of thing. We can detect how much methane was in ancient atmospheres--I'd think that drugs in an old body shouldn't be TOO hard to find out. But I'll be honest, I'm out of my depth here. I do carnivores and ecology. If you know anything that would help, I'd appreciate it!
Ignore that man, look at the pretty patterns!
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Old 1st December 2012, 06:06 AM   #128
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
Have you tried 4-HO-DMT mushrooms in a social situation where other people are not on them Dinwar?

If so what did you notice about your reaction times and visual acuity vs non 4-HO-DMT people?

It's hard to put into text the change in consciousness it produces, but I have numerous subjective stories that can verify the train of thought in the OP.
So not science, no actual research. how do panic attacks help reproduction?
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Old 1st December 2012, 06:09 AM   #129
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
The problem with your question is that such incidences would never be easily reproducible in a clinical setting for scientific study.
So the hundreds and probably actual studies of sexual arousal are just unknown to you and an excuse is made by you.

Alcohol inhibits people inhibitions, a more likely candidate to lead to sex.

Once again Zeuzzz, you will not engage in critical discussion of your ideas, the "I am just asking questions" will come next. I suppose empirical research only matters to you when you discuss astrophysics.
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Old 1st December 2012, 06:11 AM   #130
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
Please don't bring religion into this. This is a scientific thread grounded in empirical evidence of psychopharmcology and it's potential role in evolution.

.
Except you waffled and danced around the empirical research when asked about it.

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Old 1st December 2012, 06:12 AM   #131
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Originally Posted by quarky View Post
I hope this doesn't sound crass:

In a tribe, if some young people imbibed in a questionable alkaloid, they would be afforded a degree of protection as they explored their intoxication. They would be excused from their normal chores and duty, on account of being all messed up.
Psst, usually such mysteries are practiced in a gender segregated situation.
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Old 1st December 2012, 06:14 AM   #132
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
the empirical facts of the effects of the aforementioned drugs
The imaginary empirical facts you supplied!

21 meter salute



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Old 1st December 2012, 06:17 AM   #133
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
Enough to know what they are about.

What is the point of this question?
that doesn't mean they have the effects that you claim, now because of the serotonin effects, yes they might increase night visual acuity. However you ignore the false positive and other side effects that are also there. then you just asserted the sexual arousal hypothesis.

I have used many psychedelics, that does not mean that my personal experience can be generalized to the population at large.

Single data points do not make science.
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Old 1st December 2012, 06:47 AM   #134
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I'm confused about this 'debate'. If it's about psylocibin specifically playing a big role in prehistory or human evolution, it seems dicey.

If it is more general, I think it might be fair to say that awareness altering drugs likely did play a role in human behavior...not in actual physical changes, but perhaps in occasional insights that brought innovations. I think that could even be said of lsd and modern computing devices.
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Old 1st December 2012, 07:15 AM   #135
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz
Glad to see someone else knows their basic pharmacology facts.
Pharmacology is, at this stage, a red herring. No one has really disputed the idea that there might be some benefits to taking this drug in primitive societies. The fact that there would be benefits, however, in no way proves that there WERE benefits--the maps I've provided suggest that early humans didn't taken them (because you can't eat what doesn't grow in the area). You may as well be discussing the impact of potatoes on Neanderthal evolution--sure, potatoes are more nutritious, yield a high number of calories per acre, and are harder to trample than many grains, but they grew on a different continent and Neanderthals never saw them. Similarly, only a few groups of humans even had the potential to encounter 'shrooms, and that was late in human migration, long after our species arose.

Again, the cart goes AFTER the horse.
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Old 1st December 2012, 07:42 AM   #136
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Pharmacology is, at this stage, a red herring. No one has really disputed the idea that there might be some benefits to taking this drug in primitive societies. The fact that there would be benefits, however, in no way proves that there WERE benefits--the maps I've provided suggest that early humans didn't taken them (because you can't eat what doesn't grow in the area). You may as well be discussing the impact of potatoes on Neanderthal evolution--sure, potatoes are more nutritious, yield a high number of calories per acre, and are harder to trample than many grains, but they grew on a different continent and Neanderthals never saw them. Similarly, only a few groups of humans even had the potential to encounter 'shrooms, and that was late in human migration, long after our species arose.

Again, the cart goes AFTER the horse.
That's why I was wondering if this discussion is specific to shrooms.
Certainly, there were alternative sources of trippy plants, and even animals, in some cases. Ibogaine; datura; amanitas, cacti, and so on.
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Old 1st December 2012, 08:03 AM   #137
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Originally Posted by Dancing David View Post
Alcohol inhibits people inhibitions, a more likely candidate to lead to sex.
Does it? http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-15265317

Quote:
In high doses, alcohol impairs our reaction times, muscle control, co-ordination, short-term memory, perceptual field, cognitive abilities and ability to speak clearly. But it does not cause us selectively to break specific social rules. It does not cause us to say, "Oi, what you lookin' at?" and start punching each other. Nor does it cause us to say, "Hey babe, fancy a shag?" and start groping each other.

The effects of alcohol on behaviour are determined by cultural rules and norms, not by the chemical actions of ethanol.

There is enormous cross-cultural variation in the way people behave when they drink alcohol. There are some societies (such as the UK, the US, Australia and parts of Scandinavia) that anthropologists call "ambivalent" drinking-cultures, where drinking is associated with disinhibition, aggression, promiscuity, violence and anti-social behaviour.

There are other societies (such as Latin and Mediterranean cultures in particular, but in fact the vast majority of cultures), where drinking is not associated with these undesirable behaviours - cultures where alcohol is just a morally neutral, normal, integral part of ordinary, everyday life - about on a par with, say, coffee or tea. These are known as "integrated" drinking cultures.

This variation cannot be attributed to different levels of consumption - most integrated drinking cultures have significantly higher per-capita alcohol consumption than the ambivalent drinking cultures.

Instead the variation is clearly related to different cultural beliefs about alcohol, different expectations about the effects of alcohol, and different social rules about drunken comportment.
I've only recently encountered this information, so I'm not putting it out there as gospel, but it's certainly an interesting thought that the lowering of inhibitions due to alcohol may be cultural, rather than chemical in nature. It's certainly true that many scientific studies have shown that people who believe they are drinking alcohol behave as if they have drunk alcohol, although that's not necessarily quite the same thing.

Perhaps I should start a thread.
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Old 1st December 2012, 08:46 AM   #138
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I can say from experience that alcohol doesn't help me get laid. It makes that little voice that says "People don't like to debate obscure topics in sub-branches of fields of science for hours on end" curl up in a corner and cry. Ever try to get laid after a three-hour discussion on the evolutionary reasons for being attracted to jerks when you're young and nice guys as you age? Trust me, you can't!

Originally Posted by quarky
Certainly, there were alternative sources of trippy plants, and even animals, in some cases. Ibogaine; datura; amanitas, cacti, and so on.
This all suffers from the same problem as the 'shrooms discussion: it's not enough to prove that the plants have an impact on our brains. You must also prove that humans ingested them, and in sufficient quantities to actually impact evolution.
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Old 1st December 2012, 09:40 AM   #139
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
That page is very lacking in scientific studies and references.
It's a well established phenomenon and it had three references (one to Science --it doesn't get much higher impact than that).

Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
I suspect you are missing the main point of the theory anyway by referencing the Garcia effect.

As it relates to neural learning, it is inherently obvious with all drugs that produce a positive effect in human beings that even stimuli that are initially unpleasant end up being rewired over time in the brain into a positive sensation.
[...]
Given your irrelevant comments, I suspect you are the one missing point of my digression. You feel sick after eating something and you will often develop a taste aversion even if the illness happens hours after the food was consumed. That is all that the García effect describes. No more and no less.
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Old 1st December 2012, 10:07 AM   #140
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
Pharmacology is, at this stage, a red herring. No one has really disputed the idea that there might be some benefits to taking this drug in primitive societies. The fact that there would be benefits, however, in no way proves that there WERE benefits--the maps I've provided suggest that early humans didn't taken them (because you can't eat what doesn't grow in the area). You may as well be discussing the impact of potatoes on Neanderthal evolution--sure, potatoes are more nutritious, yield a high number of calories per acre, and are harder to trample than many grains, but they grew on a different continent and Neanderthals never saw them. Similarly, only a few groups of humans even had the potential to encounter 'shrooms, and that was late in human migration, long after our species arose.

Again, the cart goes AFTER the horse.
I agree with you on most of what you wrote but your maps are irrelevant. You provided a map of the current distribution of a single species of mushrooms, Psilocybe cubensis. Obviously current distribution of P. cubensis has little to say in regard to what its distribution might have been like a few hundred thousand or million years ago (or even just 10000 years ago, for that matter).

The other issue, of course, is that there are at least a couple of hundred currently known species of mushrooms which contain psilocybin and/or related compounds. A better reference might have been something like this. Indeed, it didn't take much searching for me to find two psilocybian species which grow in Africa: Panaeolus africanusWP and Panaeolus cyanescensWP. I was actually surprised to find that P. cyanescens grows in Africa. It doesn't get much more potent than P. cyanescens.

Last edited by cosmicaug; 1st December 2012 at 10:30 AM. Reason: CHanged "and related compounds" to "and/or related compounds"
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Old 1st December 2012, 12:29 PM   #141
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Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post


Cave art. Numerous archaic art portrays mushrooms as a pivotal influence in human evolution. You only have to look at the artwork in ancient caves and the morphological drawings they chose to draw to portray the importance of mushrooms, and other related psychedelics, to the human record. I can supply voluminous evidence of this if you require it.
Exactly where Zeuzzz, citations and data please.
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Old 1st December 2012, 12:34 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by cosmicaug View Post
It's called the García Effect. It's curious because in most conditioned responses the effect needs to happen very shortly after the stimulus to produce a proper association whereas with food it can be produced even when the effect happens hours after ingestion..
The conditioning of avoidance comes as you vomit up the taste again.
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Old 1st December 2012, 01:20 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by cosmicaug View Post
I agree with you on most of what you wrote but your maps are irrelevant. You provided a map of the current distribution of a single species of mushrooms, Psilocybe cubensis. Obviously current distribution of P. cubensis has little to say in regard to what its distribution might have been like a few hundred thousand or million years ago (or even just 10000 years ago, for that matter).

The other issue, of course, is that there are at least a couple of hundred currently known species of mushrooms which contain psilocybin and/or related compounds. A better reference might have been something like this. Indeed, it didn't take much searching for me to find two psilocybian species which grow in Africa: Panaeolus africanusWP and Panaeolus cyanescensWP. I was actually surprised to find that P. cyanescens grows in Africa. It doesn't get much more potent than P. cyanescens.
Fair enough. I didn't really put much effort into this--after all, I WAS doing the research for both sides of the argument, and frankly was more showing what such research would look like than I was doing the research.

The next step is to figure out how to identify humans that ate these things in the past. I mean, the mere presence of something in the environment doesn't mean that they ate it (or that they ate it in sufficient quantities to impact evolution--others have argued such things were used for ceremonial purposes, rather than being more generally utilized as Zeuzzz speculates).
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Old 1st December 2012, 03:13 PM   #144
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for all we know, eating a psychedelic shroom back then would kill you
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Old 1st December 2012, 07:21 PM   #145
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Originally Posted by dafydd View Post
I would like to state that I do not advocate the use of illegal drugs.
Yet, you advocate the use of legal drugs?

Why not just say that you don't like monkeys altering their state of mind?

Or do you believe that the government should decide what chemicals you, or I, can ingest with impunity?

Your post sucks!
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Old 1st December 2012, 08:10 PM   #146
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Originally Posted by cosmicaug View Post
I agree with you on most of what you wrote but your maps are irrelevant. You provided a map of the current distribution of a single species of mushrooms, Psilocybe cubensis. Obviously current distribution of P. cubensis has little to say in regard to what its distribution might have been like a few hundred thousand or million years ago (or even just 10000 years ago, for that matter).

The other issue, of course, is that there are at least a couple of hundred currently known species of mushrooms which contain psilocybin and/or related compounds. A better reference might have been something like this. Indeed, it didn't take much searching for me to find two psilocybian species which grow in Africa: Panaeolus africanusWP and Panaeolus cyanescensWP. I was actually surprised to find that P. cyanescens grows in Africa. It doesn't get much more potent than P. cyanescens.


I thought I'd jump in here, since I brought up the availability of mushrooms to early humans. I wasn't really talking in terms of distribution of the mushroom geographically speaking, but rather in terms of biome. There's four known species of psilocybin mushroom found in Africa, however that alone doesn't really mean a lot. Africa is a large continent, with a variety of habitats. What we do know is that psilocybin mushrooms are found in humid forests, typically subtropical rainforest. They like low light, and damp.

One place psilocybin mushrooms do not grow is dry grassland. These include low moisture levels and high sunlight; both characteristics that are the opposite of what is favoured by mushrooms.

As it happens, primitive humans lived on African grasslands, not in damp forests.

Thus, early humans did not live in the same habitat as psilocybin mushrooms, making it exceedingly improbable that they had any significant impact on our evolution.
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Old 1st December 2012, 08:19 PM   #147
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
I can say from experience that alcohol doesn't help me get laid. It makes that little voice that says "People don't like to debate obscure topics in sub-branches of fields of science for hours on end" curl up in a corner and cry. Ever try to get laid after a three-hour discussion on the evolutionary reasons for being attracted to jerks when you're young and nice guys as you age? Trust me, you can't!

This all suffers from the same problem as the 'shrooms discussion: it's not enough to prove that the plants have an impact on our brains. You must also prove that humans ingested them, and in sufficient quantities to actually impact evolution.
Well, that was the other part of my confusion.
For said compounds to have had an influence on our evolution does not imply that large amounts were ingested by most people. A very few insights from altered states could quite radically influence a tribe's direction.

Not altering the brain structure, but shaking free of its normal constraints for a moment, here and there.
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Old 1st December 2012, 08:57 PM   #148
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Originally Posted by quarky View Post
Well, that was the other part of my confusion.
For said compounds to have had an influence on our evolution does not imply that large amounts were ingested by most people. A very few insights from altered states could quite radically influence a tribe's direction.

Not altering the brain structure, but shaking free of its normal constraints for a moment, here and there.

Those might affect cultural development, but they wouldn't effect us genetically, which is what evolution is.
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Old 1st December 2012, 09:30 PM   #149
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indirectly
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Old 1st December 2012, 11:27 PM   #150
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Originally Posted by quarky View Post
Well, that was the other part of my confusion.
For said compounds to have had an influence on our evolution does not imply that large amounts were ingested by most people. A very few insights from altered states could quite radically influence a tribe's direction.

Not altering the brain structure, but shaking free of its normal constraints for a moment, here and there.
To do what Zeuzzz is talking about WOULD require a large number of people to ingest the drug. If he'd like to postulate something else, he's more than welcome to do so.

And if you want indirect impacts, you STILL need to prove that the drug was ingested. No one has done so thus far. So the idea remains, at best, interesting but not worth much of anyone's time.
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Old 1st December 2012, 11:49 PM   #151
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
To do what Zeuzzz is talking about WOULD require a large number of people to ingest the drug. If he'd like to postulate something else, he's more than welcome to do so.

And if you want indirect impacts, you STILL need to prove that the drug was ingested. No one has done so thus far. So the idea remains, at best, interesting but not worth much of anyone's time.
Yeah, but what drug needs to be proven to be ingested?
Limited to a specific mushroom?
Other drugs, that are known to flourish in said regions?
Are they a separate topic, or might we expand this one enough to include them?

The basic concept of the o.p. needn't be constrained by an obscure error of geography and botany. We already know that Siberian shamans dosed on amanitas, and his pee was consumed by the curious of lesser status.

There are few areas of hunter-gatherer societies that don't include drug ceremonies. Even tobacco use is something that is nearly universal in humans, odd as it seems.
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Old 1st December 2012, 11:55 PM   #152
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You want to make this so broad that ANY consumption of ANY drug counts. That's another attempt to make this idea unfalsifiable. You say you're a science guy--you should know that science requires specific, testable predictions. One has been made. Are you admitting that you can't actually test it?
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Old 2nd December 2012, 12:22 AM   #153
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
To do what Zeuzzz is talking about WOULD require a large number of people to ingest the drug. If he'd like to postulate something else, he's more than welcome to do so.

And if you want indirect impacts, you STILL need to prove that the drug was ingested. No one has done so thus far. So the idea remains, at best, interesting but not worth much of anyone's time.
Check out the archaeological evidence found in the earliest rock art presented by Lewis-Williams of the depictions of entoptic phenomenaWP. These hallucinations are commonly associated with the ingestion of entheogens. That said, entheogens are not the only ways to activate these hallucinations although current hunter gatherers commonly do.

I think the source of the hallucinations is less important than the fact that our nervous system responds to these sources in a common way and our different cultural environments have translated these hallucinations differently with critical consequences in the trajectories of human history.

Human evolution since the beginning of our ability to interpret and communicate hallucinations as sources of the supernatural has become a very strange affair. The resulting ability to invent "hallucinations" such as language, art , mathematics and religion as abstract representations of our unseen inner life can easily be seen as direct consequences of this first step induced by consuming entheogens.
The tree of knowledge myth certainly describes the dangers and benefits of this ability to formalize and communicate our abstractions through the ability to moralize right from wrong. The ingestion of some substance as being the start of this process makes the myth even more interesting.

I think what we should be doing is looking for evidence which disproves this hypothesis. So far I have yet to find any.
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Old 2nd December 2012, 12:23 AM   #154
quarky
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Originally Posted by Dinwar View Post
You want to make this so broad that ANY consumption of ANY drug counts. That's another attempt to make this idea unfalsifiable. You say you're a science guy--you should know that science requires specific, testable predictions. One has been made. Are you admitting that you can't actually test it?
Oh, come on.
The premise of the o.p. remains essentially the same, even if the specific botany/geography was off. I think Zeuzzz's mistake in this was to be so specific, to a certain mushroom.

Must a new thread be started? Same idea; more likely hallucinogen for the times and the place?

Most likely, all this remains below the threshold of scientific scrutiny.
Tossing ideas around, however, is definitely part of being a science guy.
In your field, especially, you bounce stuff around with your peers, even prior to an hypothesis..much less where you decide where to do some digging.
And it's always wrong; always interesting; always unearths something new, even when nothing gets un-Earthed.
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Old 2nd December 2012, 04:03 AM   #155
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Originally Posted by Rashmi View Post
Yet, you advocate the use of legal drugs?

Why not just say that you don't like monkeys altering their state of mind?

Or do you believe that the government should decide what chemicals you, or I, can ingest with impunity?

Your post sucks!
I was covering myself, I didn't want to break any forum rules because I have been suspended twice and I don't want to be banned. My favourite Mahalia track is ''The Upper Room''. You have a nice day too. Cheers.

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Old 2nd December 2012, 05:41 AM   #156
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I last looked in at page one.
And the thread has finally reached this point:

Originally Posted by gumboot View Post
I haven't watched the video, but does the person presenting this theory address the fact that Psilocybin mushrooms are not found in the environments where early humans evolved?
Originally Posted by Zeuzzz View Post
...Cave art. Numerous archaic art portrays mushrooms as a pivotal influence in human evolution. You only have to look at the artwork in ancient caves and the morphological drawings they chose to draw to portray the importance of mushrooms, and other related psychedelics, to the human record. I can supply voluminous evidence of this if you require it. ...
I'd like to see what you found so convincing, Zeuzzz.

Originally Posted by gumboot View Post
Something else that has occurred to me is that all prehistoric evidence of drug-taking by early humans indicates that the drug-taking was a very special ritualised activity, often restricted to important spiritual figures such as wise men/holy men, or used in special ceremonies such as the crowning of a new God-King.

This evidence would tend to strongly argue against the idea of the mushrooms being such an important part of the general population's diet that it caused a dramatic and very rapid evolutionary change.
This is the impression I have as well.
Zeuzzz, do you have anything to back up the idea hominids chewed 'shrooms before hunting as a general practice?

Originally Posted by gumboot View Post
I thought I'd jump in here, since I brought up the availability of mushrooms to early humans. I wasn't really talking in terms of distribution of the mushroom geographically speaking, but rather in terms of biome. There's four known species of psilocybin mushroom found in Africa, however that alone doesn't really mean a lot. Africa is a large continent, with a variety of habitats. What we do know is that psilocybin mushrooms are found in humid forests, typically subtropical rainforest. They like low light, and damp.

One place psilocybin mushrooms do not grow is dry grassland. These include low moisture levels and high sunlight; both characteristics that are the opposite of what is favoured by mushrooms.

As it happens, primitive humans lived on African grasslands, not in damp forests.

Thus, early humans did not live in the same habitat as psilocybin mushrooms, making it exceedingly improbable that they had any significant impact on our evolution.
Are there any psychotropic plants that grow in African grasslands?
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Old 2nd December 2012, 05:43 AM   #157
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Originally Posted by quarky View Post
indirectly
Nope evolution is solely based upon the variable rates of reproductive success. Psychedelic mushrooms would be an unlikely candidate:

-availability
-regular usage
-link to alleged factor changing rates of reproduction
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Old 2nd December 2012, 05:44 AM   #158
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Originally Posted by quarky View Post
There are few areas of hunter-gatherer societies that don't include drug ceremonies. Even tobacco use is something that is nearly universal in humans, odd as it seems.
yes, but the ceremonies are almost always gender segregated and don't involve fornication.
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Old 2nd December 2012, 06:03 AM   #159
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I googled 'cave art mushrooms' to get an idea of what Zeuzzz is going to post up on the subject and found this little gem:
http://www.archania.org/index.php?pa..._and_evolution
last updated 19/11/2012.

Quote:
If it can be established that chimpanzees become increasingly interested in abstract patterns from habitually eating magic mushrooms, then we might also expect the emergence of increasingly abstract behavior within a chimpanzee community that habitually eats magic mushrooms.
Quote:
If there was just a slightly higher survival rate for the individuals eating magic mushrooms due to what might have been their improved ability to find abstract solutions, it is enough to have increased the amount of their genes[11] and epigenetic[12] structures within the human gene pool.
There's more in the same vein, written in pretty colours on a black background.
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Old 2nd December 2012, 06:05 AM   #160
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Originally Posted by pakeha View Post





There's more in the same vein, written in pretty colours on a black background.
Then it must be true.
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