Francesco Sammarco studied in the early 80’s palaeethnology and archeology at the University of Lecce (Italy) as part of his BA (Hons) in ‘Classics’. He also holds a BA (Hons) in ‘Classical Archeology’, from King’s College London/University of London (U.K.), from the early 90’s, and a Masters degree (MA) in ‘Public Archeology’ from the University College London/University of London (U.K.). He has a long term professional and personal interest in the issues surrounding shamanism, archeology, ancient rock-art, traditional medicines, religious anthropology, ethnobotany, and ancient and contemporary native cultures. Hopelessly in love with the pre-Columbian cultures of the Americas, Nagualism, Taoism and ancient forms of divination, In the last decade, Francesco has met and worked with many highly respected indigenous and mestizo Peruvian shamans. Among them: Alex Stark, Don Ruperto Pena Shuña, Don Agustin Rivas, Don Julio Gerena Pinedo, Don Alberto Torres Davila, Don Leoncio Garcia Sampaya, Don Adriano Rodriguez, Don Mariano Silvano Sinuri, Don Alfredo Cairuna, Don Pedro Leon and Don Sebastian Quispe Querillo.
Francesco is the main editor of the three icaros CDs collections that El Mundo Magico produced and published, respectively, in 2001, 2003 and in 2010. In 1999, Francesco hypothesized the use of psycho-active substances during the celebration of the Mystery cults among the Iapygian-Messapians, the ancient indigenous people of Southern Apulia, in the sanctuary of Monte Papalucio at Oria (Brindisi, Italy). He is the founder of ”El Mundo Magico” (‘The Magical Earth’ or ‘The Magical World’, in Spanish) the idea of which stemmed out of a memorable Ayahuasca ceremony in the Peruvian Amazon, in June 2000. More than for visions, Francesco’s predilection in the use of the magical Ayahuasca brew is for divination and revelations. The medicine let us open to explore different realms of reality, way beyond our wildest dreams: the world we witness when we take Ayahuasca is one of unfathomable magic and mystery, something that can shake to the very foundations our consolidated, social-fabricated idea of reality.