BC’s latest health order was announced, banning all social gatherings until the new year. This Christmas, we can only interact with those in our core bubble. Since we have to adapt our yuletide festivities, let’s go back to the old ways… we should all do some mushrooms. After all, it’s an ancient tradition. That’s right. Christmas is really about psychedelics and the proof is visible throughout our current customs. But, it’s not about getting high. There is a deeper meaning behind the mushrooms and that’s where the spirit of Christmas comes from. In case you have never heard it, here is the story behind our Christmas traditions.
The Koryak are the indigenous people of the Far East of Siberia. During the winter solstice, a Koryak Shaman would gather the hallucinogenic mushrooms, Amanita Muscaria. Donning red and white regalia to honor the mushrooms, the shaman would look for them under pine trees. On the eve of the winter solstice, they would use the mushrooms to go on a spiritual journey. The belief was that the mushrooms could answer any of the problems in the village that were still leftover from the previous year. Ultimately, this would wipe the slate clean and allow for a fresh start in the coming year.
There have been very few reports of human death but Amanita muscaria are classified as poisonous. Noted for their hallucinogenic properties, these mushrooms also contain the natural stimulant, ibotenic acid. Known for increasing adrenaline, ibotenic acid causes increased physical strength and ability. So what does this mean? Eating these mushrooms would literally make you jump around as fast and far as they could, given them the common name “fly amanita or fly agaric.”
Random Reindeer Fact – Reindeer are native to Siberia and they love Amanita muscaria. In fact, it’s their favorite food. We don’t know for certain whether the reindeer get high but their behavior is definitely suspicious. There have been numerous reports of prancing, jumping, and frolicking.
Every winter solstice, far in the North, someone dressed in red and white would collect brightly colored mushrooms. Eating the magical fungi would send them on a spiritual journey and they would be gifted with great knowledge. When their trip had ended, they would share this newfound wisdom with the village; giving people the ability to let go of their troubles for a fresh new year. Today, Christmas has definitely evolved into something else but this year, maybe it’s time for us to bring back to tradition.