The Natufian Shaman -- The Natufian culture flourished in the southern Levant between 15,000 and 11,600 years ago. One of the places that Natufian dead were buried is a small cave named Hilazon Tachtit, located on a steep cliff about 500 feet above the Hilazon River, with a sweeping view of the river and the Mediterranean shoreline, in which twenty-eight burials have been excavated. These burials can be dated to between 12,400 and 12,000 years ago. Was one of them of a female shaman?
On the Origins of Ayahuasca -- The ayahuasca drink is made from the stem of the ayahuasca vine. Sometimes, but rarely, the drink is made from the vine alone; almost invariably other plants are added. It is in fact this companion plant that contains the potent hallucinogen dimethyltryptamine; the vine contains MAO inhibitors. How in the world did indigenous peoples in the Upper Amazon come up with the idea of combining DMT with an MAO inhibitor? And when and where did they first do it?
The Mystery of Ulluchu -- The Moche culture flourished in the northwestern coastal areas of Peru around AD 100–800. Human sacrifice was a significant part of their state religion, apparently to appease a deity named Ai Apaec, who is depicted in Moche art as fanged, half-human, most often in the shape of a spider, holding in one hand a severed human head and in another the crescent-shaped ceremonial knife called a tumi. Were hallucinogens part of these ceremonies?
There are two types of shamans in the Jivaro, the wawek, which are bewitching shamans and the pener uwisin which cure. Both may derive their power in many different ways. In the process of curing or bewitching, both shamans drink natema, which will give them the ability to enter into the supernatural world.
The Tucano religious system has a multitude of spirits and souls, rather than a few important deities. The Tucano are known for their use of coca, tobacco, and a number of hallucinogens, all of which may have been confined to magico-religious practices in the past. Shamanism is largely a male role, and achievement of this status requires apprenticeship to an established shaman.