Psychologist and consciousness researcher, Stanley Krippner, offers unique insights into the sacred Amazonian medicinal drink, Ayahuasca
Ayahuasca (ayawaska pronounced [ajaˈwaska] in the Quechua language) is any of various psychoactive infusions or decoctions prepared from the Banisteriopsis spp. vine, usually mixed with the leaves of dimethyltryptamine (DMT)-containing species of shrubs from the Psychotria genus. The brew, first described academically in the early 1950s by Harvard ethnobotanist Richard Evans Schultes, who found it employed for divinatory and healing purposes by the native peoples of Amazonian Colombia, is known by a number of different names (see below). It has been reported that some effects can be had from consuming the Caapi vine alone, but that DMT-containing plants (such as Psychotria) remain inactive when drunk as a brew without a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as Caapi. How indigenous peoples discovered the synergistic properties of the plants used in the ayahuasca brew remains unknown.