And I think as writers, it serves us well to humor such a fascination...often.
When I write God of Gods, I refer to the only plant in all of history to have been deified. It is a plant...and a god--how it is referred to in the Rigveda, an ancient Indian sacred collection of Vedic Sanskrit hymns.
Also, somewhere in the history of this plant and ritual is also the Aryan race-- the original Aryans who, 3000 years ago, migrated from "the north" into the Indus valley. Hitler modeled his perfect race after them. Even his swastika was a form of an Indus-Aryan symbol.
We don't know exactly what the plant was. But, a good theory is given here. The author believes that the plant is the mushroom "Amanita muscaria" Commonly known in North America as the Fly Agaric.
The reason for its common name? The myth that housewives used to pour a little milk in a saucer and then slice the mushrooms into it. When flies ate the milk, they died. There have been studies done that expel that myth...but it persists.
The mushrooms are listed as toxic to humans in all field guides, though. Please, don't ever eat a wild mushroom that has not first been identified by an expert.
Back to the God of Gods... So, here is how it worked: in this Aryan ritual that was passed down for centuries, the "soma" was beaten with water, mixed with honey, and then immediately consumed. The participants had visions.
Yes they did...hallucinations. Along with acute nausea.
Now, what the Aryans did next was what makes all of this so fascinating . I quote from the above linked article. "...the 4th verse of the 74th hymn in the 9th book that the officiating priests with full bladders urinate the on-coming Soma"
They caught their water. Uh huh...they caught their urine after consuming the drink, and then it was drunk again for another round of visions. And the second time around--and even a third, there was no longer the side effect of nausea.
To read more about it, click here.