The Nagualist Newsletter and Open Forum / Issue 2 August / September 1994
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According to the rule of the Nagual, all living beings are granted the power to seek an opening to freedom. Man is not special or unique. I've often wondered how an insect, for instance, might ever learn to move its assemblage point. A possible method occurred to me years ago while picking magic mushrooms (purely for study, I don't eat them). I noticed that I had competition from the pill bugs. Psychedelics are known to affect insects.

My own experience with power plants has been decades of disappointment. In the absence of a Nagual leader, power plants don't seem to produce any lasting results. Instead, they give a false feeling of progress and waste valuable time.

Still, the history of Nagualism is as it is. I continue to study power plants because they are part of our past. For this issue, I decided to collect some hallucinogenic mushrooms and feature them. After dropping off some newsletters at the post office, I walked a block to a nearby park. I selected it because there was a lot of well watered grass. The park is right across from a police station. It took all of 10 minutes to locate and collect the mushrooms shown here. As I photographed the mushrooms, a ladies civic group watched. They probably thought it was charming someone took such an interest in nature.

These mushrooms are a variety very common to Southern California. I have found them as far north as Pasadena and as far south as Temecula. They are found year round growing in grass or in places which have been fertilized with horse manure. One need not even leave the confines of one's home to pick them. Find a horse trail and collect a trash can bag of dried horse manure. Crush it (wear a mask) and spread onto any lawn. If the lawn is watered twice a day, there will be many different mushroom varieties within two weeks. With knowledge, you will probably find the ones shown here.Caution!!! There are deadly ones with a similar look. These instructions shouldn't be taken as an invitation to eat them, if you intend to do that, first take a course in Mycology at the local university.

These mushrooms are a member of the Panaeolus genus (which has several active members), probably Panaeolus subbalteatus (the spore print is black). The dosage is 20 mushrooms. By contrast, the dosage of the mushroom suspected of being don Juan's favorite is about 2. A mutation of this mushroom variety can be found in Mushrooms Demystified by David Arora. It's much stronger and is often found in association with this one. It has a smoother cap, often no darker ring, and tends to grow in clumps. Pill bugs ravenously devour both varieties.

Those new to hunting mushrooms will be pleasantly surprised. The hallucinogenic variety are not uncommon. The first step to finding them is a thorough acquaintance with the procedures of identification. This requires care, patience, and a lot of study, but it's not too difficult. A spore print is taken first (very easy and fun). This is followed by an examination of external traits. Personally, I feel that it is important to follow up and use a microscope for verification of spore shape. Life is very fragile and some mushrooms are very deadly.

Through the use of power plants, don Juan taught Carlos intense concentration, dedication to purpose, and the ability to exert himself beyond his limits. For instance, Carlos spent four hours just grinding one clump of seeds of the Devil's Weed. The procedure required to produce the little smoke was equally demanding. Producing either "ally" required more than a year of dedication. Carlos was forced to push himself far beyond ordinary exertion levels. In light of his most recent books, it would be interesting to ask him which was more important, the effort or the effect.

The ability to exert oneself far beyond ordinary levels is the fuel of unbending intent. It is the same force that drives us to recapitulate our lives away. It is the skill required to overcome dreaming barriers. A stubborn assemblage point will yield to extreme effort even without power plants. Power plants tend to dampen a person's ability to exert extreme effort because they produce subtle hangovers and weaken the body.

The mushrooms pictured below are mild and will displace your assemblage point for about 6 hours. In my opinion, 6 hours of recapitulating would be more profitable. Besides, picking them might deny a pill bug a chance for freedom.

Probable Panaeolus subbalteatus. The cap color in the above photo is misleading, cap is light brown.

Nagualist Newsletter and Open Forum / Issue 2 Aug. /Sept. 1994