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question about altering consciousness?

I was reading a book on Shamanism, and it mentioned that if a person smokes tobacco (someone who isnt addicted to it.) then the nicotine will alter their consciousness and make it easier to go on spirit journeys and such. I know that certain mushrooms and peyote will do this, but will nicotine/tobacco have this effect too?
fireball, shut the hell up. you’re a moron.


  1. I don’t know about naturally grown tobacco but any kind of store bought tobacco will just make you dizzy and put a lot of chemicals in your body.

  2. Short answers – not exactly. It isn’t nicotine that alters consciousness. It is the spirit of the plants that is sought as teacher, healer and tool, but it is not the same type of tool as peyote.
    Shamanic use of Tobacco is complex. First, forget commercial tobacco, nothing that follows has anything to do with cigarettes or even commercial pipe tobacco. This is about Mapacho or traditionally grown, harvested, cured and handled plants.
    The use of tobacco plants (there is more than one) have complex uses. Both the smoke and the physical plant are used for healing, clearing, purification and to carry prayers.
    In some traditions, tobacco juice is drunk or poured into the nose for purification and healing (PLEASE don’t do this without being trained by a shaman – a nicotine overdose this way has killed people). The plant spirit is seen as being very powerful and capable of removing evil and malignancies from a person.
    The use of tobacco, when seen as a sacred plant, can be very powerful. When you are raised in a culture where you are taught to respect these plants and honor the sacred nature of their work, it is very different than if you grew up with Joe Camel and see tobacco and nicotine as simply a drug. Smoking a cigarette hoping to get a buzz is completely different than having traditional tobacco, seeing the plants as holy, using them within ritual, and seeking the spirits of the plants rather than the drugs contained within them.
    When tobacco is interacted with in this sacred way, it can in fact facilitate entrance into a different state of consciousness, especially when combined with other techniques and tools.


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