Autor: Jean-Francois Sobiecki
Psychoactive plant use research has been gaining momentum over the last century around the world, particularly in the Americas. Despite this, Africa has been considered in the literature to be poor in psychoactive plants. How can this be, given the rich floral and cultural diversity found on the continent?
Are African traditional healers using visionary entheogenic plants in order to assist their spiritual healing practices? This is the research question Jean-Francois Sobiecki, an ethnobotanist and herbalist, asked in 1999, that set him off on a personal Journey to explore African traditional medicine plants and their psychoactive uses.
What resulted from this study is an inventory of over 300 species of plants being documented for psychoactive purposes in African traditional medicine; the first comprehensive inventory of psychoactive plants from the continent. This includes plants with sedative, stimulant, memory enhancing and visionary entheogenic uses amongst others, for treating various conditions such as; Alzheimer’s, dementia, insomnia, epilepsy, stress, anxiety and depression.
Sobiecki also demonstrates that there is a cross cultural technology of using the same categories of initiation plants by both the African traditional healers and Amazonian curandero healers, in order to take the initiate traditional healer through a process of self-enquiry, self-development and potential self-mastery. What does this tell us about psychoactive plants ability to heal the mind, and how does this psychoactive plant technology extend to other areas of the world?
Following his 15 year apprenticeship with his teacher; Northern Sotho diviner, Mrs. Letty Maponya, Sobiecki gives an account of his plant medicine initiation in becoming an Inyanga or traditional herbalist, and the insights he learnt about healing along the path.
African Psychoactive Plants is a foundational text that offers practical guidance on shamanic dietas and informs the reader of how one can engage and apply the four major categories of initiation plant medicines – a must have for any initiate or practicing healer as well as the spiritual seeker.
The book highlights African and other global psychoactive plants indispensable for boosting health, cognitive performance and well-being, outlines steps and stages involved in the African traditional medicine initiation, as well as elaborating on the use of African plant teacher medicine called ubulawu such as Silene capensis or the Xhosa dream root to enhance dreaming and divination.
Join Sobiecki on his Phytoalchemy Journeyas he unlocks the healing gifts of the African psychoactive plants, the vision he has of creating healing gardens to conserve these invaluable plants into the future, and the plants role in creating an integrated planet.