GEORGE POST / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GEORGE POST / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Peyote buttons. View of several peyote buttons which contain the hallucinogenic drug mescaline. The buttons are dried caps of the peyote cactus (Lophophora williamsii). The buttons are generally chewed or made into infusions, and produce euphoria and an altered perception of space, time and colour. It is illegal to possess the dried parts in this form, as mescaline has become a drug of abuse. The cactus grows wild in Texas and Mexico, and was extensively used by the native American Indians. The Aztecs valued the buttons for use in holy ceremonies, and interpreted the hallucinations as being of religious importance.
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