A student of Tibetan shamanism, virtual reality, and the botany of the Amazon, McKenna is a legendary raconteur, adventurer, and proponent of the use of the psilocybin mushroom who claims that hallucinogenic plants are a key to our evolution as a language-using species. 25 collages by Satty.Editorial ReviewsFrom Publishers WeeklyMcKenna's ( Invisible Landscape ) wild theories about how hallucinogenic experiences are the last best hope of a world gone mad are at the center of these essays and interviews, most previously published. McKenna interprets three decades of flying through the deepest and highest levels of consciousness, encountering extraterrestrials, unknown languages and "the Other," the self seeking new levels of interior human existence. Much of his experience comes from trips--physical and drug-induced--to and with Amazonian Indian shamans. McKenna is best when he describes the multicolored landscapes and backgrounds of his visions and their settings. Such description, though, is rare; the author serves mostly as millenarian missionary, predicting an apocalypse for the year 2012. He gives short shrift to the demonstrable healing properties of the Amazon drugs, neglecting the most persuasive data as to why natural hallucinogens ought to be taken more seriously. He opts instead to promote hallucination as a messianic panacea for the individual psyche, not unlike the New Agers and pop psychologists against whom he rails incessantly. Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. From Library JournalMcKenna has been exploring the "Wholly Other" for 25 years. In this spiritual journey, he ponders shamanism, buddhism, and enthnopharmacology. By the phrase "archaic revival," McKenna refers to a return to shamanism, which he believes can be enhanced by current scientific practices. The next level of spiritual transformation, he explains, is achieved by the intelligent use of psychedelics and should be performed only by thoughtful explorers rather than experimenters, scientific or otherwise. The ideas presented in this collection of interviews, speeches, and articles are radical even now, and will challenge the reader. There are many insights on current spiritual movements such as goddess worship, deep ecology, space beings, and virtual reality. Recommended.- Gail Wood, Montgomery Coll. Lib., Germantown, Md.Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.