Santa and his bag of… magic mushrooms?
The story of Santa and his flying reindeer can be traced to an unlikely source: hallucinogenic or “magic” mushrooms, according to one theory.
“Santa is a modern counterpart of a shaman, who consumed mind-altering plants and fungi to commune with the spirit world,” said John Rush, an anthropologist and instructor at Sierra College in Rocklin, Calif.
Here are eight ways that hallucinogenic mushrooms explain the story of Santa and his reindeer.
1. Arctic shamans gave out mushrooms on the winter solstice.
According to the theory, the legend of Santa derives from shamans in the Siberian and Arctic regions who dropped into locals’ teepeelike homes with a bag full of hallucinogenic mushrooms as presents in late December, Rush said.