World Tree Sanctuary, INC is a lawfully incorporated 508(c)(1)(a) faith based organization in the State of Illinois. The organization confirms the legal rights of its adult members to responsibly use sacraments in bona fide ceremony pursuant to sincerely held spiritual beliefs under the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights of the US Constitution and the US Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 as well as 775 ILCS 35 the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of Illinois. Adult members of World Tree Sanctuary are qualified to carry, possess (in amounts appropriate for personal use) and/or use entheogenic sacraments including psilocybin, ayahuasca, peyote, cannabis, and other ceremonial plants.
World Tree Sanctuary accepts all natural, organic plants as healing sacraments. A special group of plant-based psychedelics have been used by humans for thousands of years, along with other various methods, to explore their consciousness in order to heal the root causes of both emotional distress and existential suffering. These plants include but are not limited to: cannabis, mushrooms, peyote, ayahuasca, 5MeO-DMT and any other indigenous Earth-based healing sacrament that has been found to benefit the health and welfare of recipients. The reported experience of thousands of years of seekers is that these plant teachers have the ability to provide a personal experience that expands our awareness and accesses a higher aspect of our personal consciousness, which may give insight to universal truths and more of our true nature as human beings. Entheogenic Sacraments can act as a catalyst for personal growth and lasting change. It’s important to note that inner exploration can be achieved through other practices, such as deep meditation and breathwork. The Sanctuary and its members affirm their right to responsibly use these sacraments in ways that are exempted from the federal Controlled Substances Act and applicable state Controlled Substances act. Members of World Tree agree that any natural organic entheogen admitted into the body may be considered to be a sacrament. Some of those substances have the potential to be harmful if inappropriately used. World Tree Sanctuary does not approve of the utilization of any sacrament in a manner that would be likely to cause harm to one’s self or to others. Therefore, members agree that “controlled” substances must be used under the direction of facilitating Elders to be legally protected. This direction extends to their personal private use when not in ceremony or direct contact with the sanctuary leaders. Members agree that sacraments/medicines should always be stored in such a way that they are not available to those who are not members or are not under the direction of facilitators. Personal or recreational use of any controlled substances is not encouraged and may remove some legal protections unless such is indicated by the member’s spiritual advisor or facilitator as being part of their spiritual and healing practice. If the leader does make such an indication, they share in the legal responsibility for such use, which is why it is so important for the member or participant to follow all established guidelines for personal consumption.
The right to use entheogens, in furtherance of the sincere exercise of religion, is inherent in state and federal constitutions and amendments relating thereto, including the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It has been further recognized and advanced by statute, including federal and state religious freedom protection acts. The right has been declared valid by courts across this nation, including the United States Supreme Court, which have recognized the right of churches and church representatives to responsibly use entheogenic sacraments in furtherance of sincerely held religious beliefs. See, e.g., Gonzales v. O Centro Espirita Beneficente Uniao do Vegetal, 546 U.S. 418, 126 S. Ct. 1211, 163 L. Ed. 2d 1017 (2006) (“UDV Decision” recognizing the religious right of the church and its members to use formulations of DMT-containing ayahuasca); Church of the Holy Light of the Queens v. Mukasey, 615 F.Supp.2d 1210 (D. Or. 2009) (“Santo Daime Decision” recognizing the religious right of the church and its members to use formulations of DMT-containing ayahuasca); State v. Mack, 2020 N.H. Lexis 206 (New Hamp. Dec. 22, 2020) (New Hampshire Supreme Court vacating order denying motion to dismiss prosecution for possession and sacramental use of psilocyn and/or psilocybin in furtherance of sincerely held religious beliefs).
The Sanctuary, respectfully, asserts its rights to seek attorney’s fees and other damages to the extent any private or government actor impinges on the rights of the Church or adult Church members to safely and responsibly practice their religion. See generally, 43 U.S.C. § 1988(b).
A key mission of World Tree Sanctuary is to build, grow and sustain a non-denominational, international faith-based religious community premised on and constructed around the safe and responsible religious use of Entheogenic Sacrament in sacred ceremonies to facilitate (a) the personal growth and religious healing of Sanctuary members, (b) the building of a transformative community, and (c) the ushering forth of community and global healing through the work of the Sanctuary and its members. The Sanctuary respects the historical and time-honored religious traditions that exist concerning Sacramental use of ancient entheogenic compounds. These Sacraments have been used in spiritual and religious ceremonies for centuries in North America and in other parts of the world for millennia. Many formal religious organizations exist in the United States that are safely and effectively using Entheogenic Sacrament as part of their spiritual practices, including those that have operated in the United States for decades. Embedded in Sanctuary doctrine is the recognition that Mother Earth has provided humans with many types of plants, fungi and other natural substances that can support spiritual growth and personal transformations. The Sanctuary recognizes that many other established churches, as well as individuals, have found religious healing through customs, practices and ceremonies that involve the intentional, religious use of entheogens. This includes but is not limited to the Native American Church and its many affiliates, which assert the right to use all entheogens as sacraments; the UDV church referenced in the UDV Decision, Santo Daime Church referenced in the Santo Daime Decision, and the Soul Quest church in Florida, all of which have long asserted the right to use ayahuasca as a sacrament; and other single and multi-sacrament churches that presently exist, or are in the process of forming all over the world.