“The Teachings of Don Juan” is the first in a series of about 15 books by Carlos Casaneda describing the author’s experiences with Yaqui Indian shamanism in Northern Mexico. As a studier of religion for many years (although not as knowledgeable as some scholars) I find these books to be utterly unique in their scope and subject matter. They are not like other New Age books. The journey that Castaneda takes his readers is mind-boggling, and his experiences are simply beyond what most people have even remotely encountered. Castaneda first met Don Juan in the early 60’s, before the hippy movement, before psychodelic drugs became popular. He was studying anthropology in Los Angeles, and Don Juan served as a field source for some fading knowledge of tribal and shamanistic rituals in Northern Mexico. Castaneda was specifically interested in peyote, a plant that gives its users hallicinations and mixes the senses in strange ways, and which LSD was meant to be a chemical reproduction of. Castaneda’s first book presents a very detailed scholastic interpretation of his experiences. All books after the first simply focus on Castaneda’s experiences with Don Juan.