In 1902, William James wrote his often cited passage, albeit cited in a censored form, about how Nitrous Oxide forced upon his mind the realization that our normal waking state of consciousness is surrounded by other forms of consciousness which are separated from it as if by as filmiest of screens.
He concluded that these other forms of consciousness must be considered, to provide an adequately complete account of the world, reconciliation into unity consciousness. Zaehner wrote Mysticism Sacred and Profane in 1957, putting forth debatable arguments that mescaline-induced mystic experiencing was an imitation of authentic, traditional Christian mysticism, and an innately significantly inferior substitute only capable of immanent, not transcendent mysticism.1968 was a tense, charged year, regarding cannabis and LSD.
The recent books that cover entheogens in Christianity and the Bible often mention Allegro, but usually in a contorted way in a footnote or aside, misrepresenting his view or vaguely disparaging Allegros theory.
The entire situation has become farcical; this awkward situation needs to be properly resolved instead of treating all aspects of his theory as taboo and off-limits.
Anywhere any form of ingesting plants is found in the Bible anointing, eating, drinking, or incense likely indicates visionary plants.
Even if the reader considers the interpretation of Christian mushroom trees in art to be trivially obvious and to need no intensive point-by-point argumentation, or is uninterested in the subject of mushrooms in religious history, there are nevertheless interesting patterns of argumentation exposed and explained here.
Mushrooms and Mankind: The Impact of Mushrooms on Human Consciousness and Religion, 2003.) Visionary plants are found at the heart of all Hellenistic-era religions, including Jewish and Christian, as well as in all mixed wine, and are phenomenologically described in the Bible and related writings and art; the Jesus figure was formed from many sources, including visionary plants and Roman imperial ruler cult., Astrotheology and Shamanism: Unveiling the Law of Duality in Christianity and Other Religions, 2006.) There are numerous other books, chapters, and articles about entheogens and religion, including forthcoming works, supporting these works and elaborating on the general entheogen theory of religion; follow the Bibliography entries.
An online gallery of artwork and matching photographs is available at Egodeath.com/christianmushroomtrees.htm, showing the Plaincourault fresco, the Montecassino illustration, other Christian mushroom trees, and photographs of mushrooms matching the art.
The treatment of the views of Wasson and Allegro has been too undifferentiated and careless.
Scholars of Christian history have too readily utilized the mycologist Wasson to dismiss Allegros theory that there was no Jesus, that the first Christians used entheogens, and that the first Christians considered Jesus to be none other than visionary plants.