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New Book on Brazilian Ayahuasca Religions

Brazilian Ayahuasca Religions: A bibliographical survey by Beatriz Caiuby Labate, Isabel Santana de Rose and Rafael Guimarães dos Santos 



This book presents the bibliographical state of the art of the Brazilian ayahuasca religions, Santo Daime, Barquinha, the União do Vegetal, and  their multiple offshoots. Following a panoramic and historical introduction of these religious movements, it offers a general evaluation of their bibliography, seeking to identify the principal characteristics, tendencies, and perspectives on this field of study. Then, it discusses the main studies in the areas of pharmacology, psychiatry, and psychology carried out in the context of these groups, evaluating their results, contributions, and limitations. Finally, it presents a bibliography of the worldwide literature which aims to be the most exhaustive possible on the theme, including both academic literature and the writings of ‘natives.’ This publication is intended as a kind of guide for researchers in the area, and to be useful also to others interested in the subject, insofar as the past decade has seen not only a national and international expansion of the ayahuasca religions, but also a true boom in studies done about them.

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Beatriz Caiuby Labate or Bia Labate was born in São Paulo in 1971. She earned a bachelor’s degree in social science from the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP) in 1996. In 2000 she obtained a master’s degree in social anthropology from the same university, receiving the Prize for Best Master’s Thesis from the National Association for Graduate Studies in Social Science (ANPOCS). Her doctoral research in social anthropology at UNICAMP focuses on the internationalization of Peruvian ayahuasca “vegetalismo.” She is co-editor of the books O uso ritual da ayahuasca (Mercado de Letras 2002) and O uso ritual das plantas de poder (Mercado de Letras, 2005) and author of the book A reinvenção do uso da ayahuasca nos centros urbanos (Mercado de Letras, 2004). She is a researcher with the Nucleus for Interdisciplinary Studies of Psychoactives (NEIP). In February 2005 she founded Alto das Estrelas, a private institute which promotes political activism, anthropological research and public events, in addition to researching the cultivation and preparation of vegetal species.

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  1. God wants us to see the awesome things that we have in Him. He wants the eyes of our heart and our understanding to be enlightened so that we might know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe.

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