The film opens with the fungi speaking, identifying the alternate universe—the invisible, intelligent network—just beneath our feet.
…When you sense Oneness, you are with us. We brought life to earth…We flourish all around in everything…even though you can’t see us…
Then goes on to describe how fungi figures so predominately in the birth-death-rebirth cycle that, without fungi we would be in deep trouble. To the point that, potentially, life would have ceased to exist long before humans came along without the fungi kingdom, numbering 1.5 million species.
Mycologist-advocate-researcher Paul Stamets is largely featured. He’s been immersed in the world of mushrooms since quite young when his older brother took him into the forest and they found an unusual variety. Today he’s considered one of the foremost authorities on fungi. He also had a debilitating liability. Although he’d had years of speech therapy as a child, it had no effect. He was unable to communicate well and was socially isolated until one significant day… when, in college, he was given a bag of psilocybin—“magic mushrooms”—and took the whole bag, enough for ten people. As it began to come on, he set intent to lose the stuttering…and did. One enormous dose. The stuttering never returned. A remarkable story that would surely make one a believer.
Additionally, Stamets is backed up with segments by scientists, journalists, therapists, clinical trial participants and consciousness seekers. Wide-ranging uses for mycelium fungus are covered, potentialities affecting health, expanded consciousness, bioremediation and more.
The documentary covers the full history of mushrooms from Gordon Wasson’s introduction by curandera Maria Sabina of southern Mexico through its resurgence today as a viable ingredient to clean the environment all the way to providing a gateway for health and spiritual wellbeing.
You’d do yourself a favor by watching this film. I came away spiritually uplifted, hopeful for the planet and feeling gratitude for this great gift of Nature that’s been there, hidden in plain sight, for millenia. The cinematography is also stunning.
Now available to rent ($4.99) and stream or buy at Fantastic Fungi in several languages. 1 hour, 20 minutes.