Effective June 1, 2002, The psychedelic herb Salvia divinorum and its active chemical, Salvinorin A, will be banned in Australia. They have been placed in the Australian Schedule 9 for illegal drugs with no therapeutic value. My heart goes out to the Australian psychonauts who have been deprived of yet another civil liberty. Here's what you can do to prevent your country from making the same mistake.

  1. Educate. If your net-surfing friends ask you about salvia or if it should come up in conversation, point them to the Salvia divinorum E2 node. It's as good a place as any to start reading.
  2. Discriminate. Some people are irresponsible, (whether just irresponsible with drugs, or irresponsible in general). If these people don't know about salvia yet, let them continue not knowing. However, if they are curious about it, you might as well give them the real information. See step one.
  3. Grow and share. Salvia can be easily grown at home, and in warm climates it should grow well in the wild. Let's get it sprouting in as many places as possible. This will make it more difficult to get rid of in case of a legal crisis, and it will promote responsible use and respect for the plant. Share cuttings with others who want to start growing. (You can start with me; my cat killed my salvia plants last winter.)
  4. Don't buy/sell. The buying and selling of dried salvia tarnishes the drug's public image. When people who don't know any better read about the trade of dried salvia on the internet, they think of it as a new "designer drug" or another marijuana. In my opinion, you're better off earning your trip by growing. See step three.
  5. All the usual admonishments. If you've read much about salvia, you've heard all these before, but they deserve to be repeated: Salvia is not a party drug. Have a trusted trip-sitter to supervise you. If making extractions, follow instructions to the letter. Stay calm and go with the flow. Governments have no good reason to see salvia as dangerous, but if people start hurting themselves while salvia tripping, they'll jump at the chance to schedule it. Be responsible.

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