Walt Disney: Cosmic, man!

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Here’s a strange little tale, sent to us from a reader on the last day of 2011. He described himself as having served as a Marine in Vietnam. And he told us of a trip he took in the early 70s…..[tiny editorial changes made for clarity]:

I got a little drunk and crazy and wound up in jail in a small town in Oaxaca – cave with iron bars.

I heard about a little mountain village, the home of the Presidente’s bruja, Maria Sabina.  One of my cavemates had some beads from there which he cherished.  Several days later I was fined and released.

I took the 3rd class bus way up in the mountains on a winding road….13 hours to Huatla de Jimenez – only to discover, amazingly, that the Beatles had flown in by helicopter a few weeks earlier and left a lot of paraphernalia behind – banners, tshirts…. it was a psilocybin mushroom town.

Days later I was out exploring and came to a waterfall.  Beautiful.  Walking carefully I went behind the waterfall – which was substantial and the rocks were very slippery.  As I shuffled along I came upon something on a rock face that caught my eye.  I flicked my lighter for a better view and there was a signature I recognized…..

Walt Disney, 1933.

poor old Walt, he wouldn’t recognize the world if he came back today


Of course, many Americans wouldn’t recognize that Walt Disney, even though Fantasia and much of the rest might not have emerged without a little assist in the psychedelic area. (And yes, Disney had indeed traveled to Oaxaca to eat those magic mushrooms.)

Nothing more to this story, but we thought you might enjoy it.

GRAPHIC:  http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/59/Walt_Disney%27s_Wonderful_World_of_Color.jpg

Where else do you see journalism of this quality and value?

Please help us do more. Make a tax-deductible contribution now.

Our Comment Policy

Keep it civilized, keep it relevant, keep it clear, keep it short. Please do not post links or promotional material. We reserve the right to edit and to delete comments where necessary.


11 responses to “Walt Disney: Cosmic, man!”

  1. Title

    […]always a massive fan of linking to bloggers that I like but really don’t get quite a bit of link really like from[…]

  2. Alex Jones says:

    I’ve always loved Walt Disney, and now I do even more!

  3. fordneri says:

    This explains a lot.

  4. lisa says:


  5. Mrgrumpyguy says:

    Journalistically tackling the stories that no one else want to touch is admirable, but, spreading unfounded rumors and gossip is quite another.  It is quite a stetch to go from finding a Walt Disney – 1933 to Walt Disney disney used drugs for his creative muse, and on the account of a drunk serviceman.  Even a quick check of Walt Disney will tell you that his oldest daughter – Diane – was born at the end of 1933, which would have kept him close to home for much of 1933.  I find it highly unlikely.

    I have had the opportunity to talk with several respected Disney authorities in recent years, even a couple who didn’t much like him.  And, I find no one documenting any kind of known illicit drug use.

    I find you tactics to be tabloid disgraceful, and only use to garner hits to your site.

    • Russ Baker says:

      Boy, your moniker is certainly apt, you ARE grumpy. For one thing, this is a delightful story about someone finding something in a cave that had Disney’s name. It does not claim to be an authoritative report on what Disney himself did or didn’t do, or whether in the course of fathering a daughter, he could or could not have taken a trip to Mexico or a trip IN Mexico. Nevertheless, it has been lore for ages that Disney, along with Dylan and the Beatles, came down to sample the fare. And, by the way, Steve Jobs admitted to using hallucinogenics. So this is only “tabloid disgraceful” if your position is that this reflects negatively on these people. We make no judgments. 

    • Dan Nil says:

      Disney made 6 separate trips to Houtla de Jimenez. To call the truth ‘tabloid tactics’ belies your ignorance of the facts. Fantasia was greatly influenced by his experiences while taking mushrooms. If you had ever done mushrooms you would recognize this at once.
      Educate yourself before you pass blind assumptions.

  6. ecsystem says:

    From Steve Jobs to Walt Disney; psychedelics have everything to do with everything. whowhatWHY, thanks, you’re a rare breed in independent journalism as I can show your groundbreaking work to more mainstream minded people and they receive it well. Gives a solid basis for legitimate discourse on these ever so important issues. And this article just brightened my day!

  7. Leftheaded says:

    I did enjoy it. It’s easy to appreciate creative people, be they artists, scientists, writers, or what have you. I’ve been a mooch here for too long so I’ll make a financial commitment to this valuable source as soon as my international check card arrives–my family recently relocated to New Zealand. Thanks for being one of the few sources I trust.

    • Russ Baker says:

      Thanks, Leftheaded. The feedback is appreciated–and we certainly don’t object when readers want to help support what we do. You become an integral part of our growth and impact.