On Leaning Into Our Symbiotic Relationship With Mushrooms

Mushrooms are the fruiting body of fungus, and fungus lives everywhere among us.

Fungus Is Among Us! children’s book cover, written by Joy Keller, Illustrated by Erica Saledo
Photo by author, Fungus Is Among Us! children’s book written by Joy Keller, illustrated by Erica Salcedo

As Joy Keller wrote in her new release children’s book about fungus, Fungus is Among Us!, it is neither a plant or animal but a different living organism with its own classification. To this, she added, “And you can run away from it … BUT YOU CAN NEVER HIDE.” Fungus is endemic; it is everywhere and impossible to escape from.

“Though not a plant or an animal, this fungus is ALIVE!” text
Photo by author; children’s book written by Joy Keller, illustrated by Erica Salcedo

There are between 2.2 million to 3.8 million species of fungus, according to scientists (as cited in Keller’s Fungus is Among Us!).

Symbiotic Relationship With Mushrooms

Did you know that certain species of fungus sprout fairy rings of mushrooms? According to the Woodland Trust, “Fairy rings are caused by an individual fungus growing underground. The fungus sprouts lots of small threads, called mycelium, in a circular shape. A year later, the mushrooms pop up out of the ground at the edge of the circle, creating the fairy ring.” There is much folklore related to fairy rings, and they are known to have supernatural elements.

It is no coincidence that psilocybin mushrooms are within this fungi kingdom. With their fungal intelligence, these mushrooms help us connect us to our greater consciousness. They enable us to more fully connect and experience an embodied life within our own beings, with other people, and with this planet.

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As I previously wrote in my article, Why Are Ancestral Technologies Re-emerging as Digital Technologies Accelerate?, “The green wave and psychedelic renaissance have emerged because the medicinal value of substances like cannabis, psilocybin mushrooms, and all functional mushrooms can no longer be suppressed. Information is both free and expensive. You just need to know where to look.” We are returning to finally culturally recognize the incredible numerous therapeutic and medical applications of cannabis and psilocybin mushrooms, substances long-stigmatized and criminalized for political and corporate reasons.

American culture and many other Westernized cultures have historically been mycophobic (afraid of mushrooms), but a mushroom boom spurred by the pandemic has been born out of humanity’s search for natural, holistic aids to help promote physical and mental health. (Do a quick Google search on “mushroom boom pandemic,” and you’ll see quite a number of articles come up.) All edible mushrooms have tremendous health benefits.

Two great videos detailing the health benefits of mushrooms, which range from helping us regulate our energy as adaptogens, to having anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties, to being consciousness amplifiers, are Tero Isokauppila’s talk on “The Healing Power of Mushrooms” and Martin Powell’s talk, “Why All Mushrooms Are Magic.”

The pandemic has heightened our physical and mental health crises, but it has also invoked a return to reverence of mushrooms and plant medicine. As corporations will continue to capitalize on developing, marketing, packaging, and selling treatments, it behooves us to remember that humans have co-evolved with plants and fungi and that not only is access to whatever natural substances we wish to partake in our birthright but also that these substances grow abundantly in nature.


Isokauppila, Tero. (March 14, 2019). The healing power of mushrooms . YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZnGwFblXpA&t=2s&ab_channel=TalksatGoogle

Keller, Joy. (2022). Fungus is Among Us! Innovation Press. https://www.theinnovationpress.com/fungus-is-among-us

Powell, Martin. (June 6, 2018). Why all mushrooms are magic . YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fITifKJwZZc&ab_channel=BrightonNaturalHealthCentre

Vickers, Hannah. (2019). What is a Fairy Ring, and What Causes Them? Woodland Trust. Retrieved from https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/blog/2019/08/what-is-a-fairy-ring/

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