In the tradition of memoirs like Daniel Pinchbeck's 2012
and Jim Carroll's The Basketball Diaries
, Adam Elenbaas's Fishers of Men
chronicles his journey from intense self-destruction and crippling depression to self-acceptance, inner awareness, and spiritual understanding, through participation in mindexpanding-and healing ayahuasca ceremonies in South America and beyond.
From his troubled and rebellious youth as a Methodist minister's son in Minnesota, to his sex and substance abuse-fueled downward spiral in Chicago and New York, culminating in a depressive breakdown, Elenbaas is plagued by a feeling of emptiness and a desperate search for meaning for most of his young life. After hitting rock bottom at his grandfather's house in rural Michigan, a chance experience with psychedelic mushrooms convinces him that he must change his ways to achieve the sense of peace that he has always desired. Several subsequent psychedelic experiences inspire him to embark on a quest to South America and take part in a shamanic ceremony, where he consumes ayahuasca, a jungle vine revered for its spiritual properties.
Over the course of nearly forty ayahuasca ceremonies during four years, Elenbaas discovers the truth about his own life and past, and begins to mend himself from the inside out. Fishers of Men
is the gripping, heartbreaking, and yet ultimately uplifting story of the power to transcend one's past.