Author + Speaker
Sophia Rokhlin is an author, speaker and nonprofit organizer from New York City. Through engaged botany and ecology, she bridges the worlds of indigenous ecological knowledge and Western science. She holds a BA in anthropology and religious studies from The New School and a M.Sc. in Ecological Economics from the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology at the Autonomous University of Barcelona.
She is a Program Coordinator at the Chaikuni Institute and currently directs the sustainable ayahuasca cultivation program at the Temple of the Way of Light, a traditional plant medicine retreat center in the Peruvian Amazon. She is a co-author of When Plants Dream: Ayahuasca, Amazonian Shamanism and the Global Psychedelic Renaissance (Watkins, 2019) on the global spread of ayahuasca.
Ayahuasca is a psychoactive tea that has a long history of ritual use among indigenous groups of the Upper Amazon. Made from the ayahuasca vine and the leaves of a shrub, ayahuasca is associated with healing in collective ceremonies and in more intimate contexts, generally under the direction of specialist an ayahuasquero, experienced practitioners who guide the ceremony and the drinkers experience.
Ayahuasca has gained significant popularity in recent years in cities around the world. Ceremonies happen nightly and Hollywood stars, Wall Street players and Silicon Valley entrepreneurs now drink the brew.
This week Sophia Rokhlin, ethnobotanist, anthropologist, speaker, and co-author of the book When Plants Dream, is on the podcast to explore the economic, social, political, cultural and environmental impact that ayahuasca is having on society.
Some useful resources: