In the all-star line-up of renowned psychonauts, it’s easy to glance over him. Dennis McKenna most likely resembles your old geography teacher. He’s not the hero who’s face is printed on posters. But he is the hero we need now.
All in the family
Like his older brother Terence McKenna, Dennis elects to study botany. Together they trek around the globe to research medicinal plants. The brothers publish several books on the subject of psychoactive plant life. But Dennis focusses on more than just hallucinogenic substances. Together with two fellow botanists he writes Botanical Medicines: the Desk Reference for Major Herbal Supplements.
In the background
Unlike Terence, Dennis McKenna does not seem to feel the need to broadcast his message to a big audience and have them clapping and cheering. He chooses a mainstream scientific career. For a while he makes a living developing cosmetics, albeit of the organic variety. And he’s a lecturer at a few universities.
Today, the interest in psychotropic plants and their medicinal applications is on the rise again. Thus generating the need for people who function as voice of the movement. That's where Dennis comes in. Now he steps into the spotlight, maybe because his brother can no longer do so. Several documentarie directors asked him for help, among those Neurons to Nirvana and DMT: The Spirit Molecule. He speaks at gatherings and is a guest in radio shows and podcasts. Recently, he published a book about his adventures with Terence.
He may not have Timothy Leary’s charisma – but Timothy eventually shot way past his target. He might not speak as eloquently as Terence McKenna – but Terence sometimes lost himself in speculation. What Dennis McKenna brings to the table? Scientific recognition, a broader view on life and a respectable background. And that might just be the characteristics that makes him an effective spokesman for this day and age.
Image taken from: www.psychointegrator.com