Definition of entheogen in English:


Pronunciation /enˈthēəjen/ /ɛnˈthiədʒɛn/ /enˈthēəˌjenik/ /ɛnˈthiəˌdʒɛnɪk/


  • A chemical substance, typically of plant origin, that is ingested to produce a nonordinary state of consciousness for religious or spiritual purposes.

    ‘Though the title may suggest that this is a book exclusively about Buddhist meditation and psychedelics, it is more fundamentally about the relationship between entheogens and the spiritual journey.’
    • ‘The tremendous cultural fear and repression focused around drug use inhibits open dialogue about the positive role entheogens can play in spiritual awakening.’
    • ‘The question I periodically take up with myself: what application might this have to magick that isn't already served by chemical entheogens?’
    • ‘On the other hand, would entheogens constitute religious enrichment for the transcendentally deprived?’
    • ‘As I've stated before, I came to ritual use of entheogens quite late in my shamanic practise - just 3 years ago in fact.’


1970s from Greek, literally ‘becoming divine within’; coined by an informal committee studying the inebriants of shamans.