Flying Symbolism and Entheogens

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The "magic carpet" legend depicted here originated in ancient Persia from rug makers who used materials dyed with Peganum harmala seeds. Absorbing the plant's psychoactive compounds through their skin, it would produce a sense of flying as they worked on their carpets. The flying horse Pegasus, the steed of Muhammad, is also believed to have been named after Peganum harmala.

The meaning of Aladdin's blue genie appearing in a cloud of smoke has been similarly forgotten. Symbolizing the Djinn spirits of the Quran, Aladdin's lamp was a portal to an unseen world. It's no small irony that the root "jin" means hidden, as the ancient tradition of burning entheogenic plants (such as cannabis and acacia) to induce religious visions has been made both illegal and laughable.

Such symbols as flying carpets, flying horses and genies now represent an entirely different kind of magic. Their incorporation into children's tales, cartoons and movies serves to hide their true meaning by framing them as pure fantasy. As the children grow into adults, even the most astute would never stop to consider the true significance of these stories.