Citation: Peter S. "Persistent Alternate Reality: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (15x extract) (exp107879)". Erowid.org. Jan 13, 2020. erowid.org/exp/107879
This report describes three Salvia Divinorum experiences; the first about five years ago, and the other two very recently. I am a white male, 35, and I live in the UK. I have a long history of depression and anxiety issues and have experimented with various drugs in my life, including LSD and magic mushrooms. At this time in my life I do not generally use other drugs other than caffeine and loratadine (allergy tablets) and am using no other medication; I do not smoke and I very rarely drink alcohol (about half a dozen times a year).
About five years ago I legally purchased 1g of Salvia Divinorum x15 extract, contained within a small sealed test-tube and other packaging. I had never used Salvia before, but had experience with other psychedelics and had been reading on the subject beforehand. I sat comfortably on a couch during daylight, with two friends present and made use of their crude homemade bong which they had normally used for cannabis. I poured a little of the finely cut, dried leaves into the bong and lit it with a lighter as I inhaled. I held it in, but felt nothing and so took a second immediately. The world dissolved into a kind of static energy that joined all things and I felt this was some fundamental state of consciousness or reality. I dissolved away and remember nothing of the middle part of the experience, but it felt profound. The tail end was much like the beginning as my reality reassembled itself from this buzzing static.
The tail end was much like the beginning as my reality reassembled itself from this buzzing static.
Although nothing unpleasant happened, for unknown reasons I had absolutely no desire to repeat the experience.
About five years later and a new bill has been passed by the UK government that essentially bans everything as the default position, other than those which are explicitly exempt (such as alcohol). From comments seen online I think the result is that many people are ‘stocking up’ on currently legal drugs that will soon be prohibited. It occurred to me that I might wish access to S. Divinorum in future, and so I decided to dig out the old test tube and see if it was still active. I do not use cannabis and so purchased a cheap bong for the sole purpose of experimenting with salvia. I ignored online advice of having a sitter and decided to go it alone.
On Friday 29th January 2016 I was alone at home. I sat on my bathroom floor (the room is small; mostly white with white bath, toilet and sink; other common bathroom objects; laminate flooring). I placed a large white towel on the floor beside me for comfort if I needed to lie down, and then sat with the back against the closed door to discourage the possibility of wandering. I kept a notebook and pen close by. I loaded a small pinch of S. Divinorum x15 into the bong (which was new and I also cleaned it first) and lit with a new jet lighter as I inhaled. I held the smoke until it became uncomfortable to do so. I was half expecting the substance to have degraded and have no effect. Moments after exhaling I felt something happening and quickly ensured the bong and lighter were distant from my legs and feet, and the lighter was off. I then sat back against the door with my legs outstretched as the effect came on quickly. Assured that the salvia was still active I now felt anxious that it was a bad idea and somewhat afraid of the unknown that was about to happen.
Similar to the first time, the world dissolved into a sort of crackling energy field, but kept jumping back towards normal whilst everything also slid and distorted. I tried to think about what I wanted and that I was determined to recall the experience on this occasion and not forget; but every thought I had became someone elses voice and left my head, and they carried on the thought/conversation for me. So I would try to continue thinking, but again and again, in quick succession, each thought left and gained a life and identity of its own. Simultaneous to this, my toilet and bath stretched out several times, distorting and jumping back as I resisted, but I soon felt my body collapse and I abandoned attempts at thinking or resisting the distortions.
I believe it was from the white bath and toilet that a white picket fence emerged. I found myself lying flat on my back on a grass lawn on a sunny day (perhaps from the ceiling lights?) surrounded by a playpen of sorts. I was a baby, unable to walk, but a baby god. Looking down on me were a ‘mum’ and ‘dad’ gods (but not my real-life parents). They spoke to me and to each other in soft Yorkshire accents (I am not from Yorkshire, although briefly lived there as an adult some years ago). They were smiling and seemed very benign and friendly. They asked if I was ‘done playing now’ or if I wanted to carry on playing a while longer. I was filled with that anxiety not uncommon from psychedelics, that I would go mad or die, or break the universe. But I was a baby and fretted and they spoke soothingly to me. They assured me that there was no need to be scared, no need to ever be scared and I could stop playing if I wanted to, or I could carry on playing a bit longer; but no-one was going to make me stop playing if I didn’t want to. I knew what they meant by this: normal reality, my normal life, was me ‘playing’ and I could go back and carry on if I wanted to, but I didn’t have to. I wanted to carry on playing and they said that wasn’t a problem, I could play as long as I liked. I asked without words, if I could try being rich instead of poor, and they told me I was already rich, because I am everybody in the whole world. I then began to return. I expected to forget the peak experience again, so I tried to hold onto it in my mind and barely able to see my ‘real’ bathroom surroundings I tried to take notes which I will quote momentarily (with apologies for the foul language). After I was more normal again I wrote an account as best I could, which is filled with me swearing I would never take salvia again because it was too disturbing.
09:57 going to fill the bowl now. Sniffed the salvia tube – strong herbal scent like tea leaves.
[On the line below, with no time recorded, I wrote during the experience, in a messy and large script] “It works – horrifying but mad. Shes telling what to write” [sic]. That was written just off the peak experience itself, with an alternate world juxtaposed with this one and with the mum and dad gods standing over me and my hands shaking uncontrollably.
10:10 Fuck! Shaking. Can barely write. When does it end?
10:13 That’s a lot of NOPE! Fuck this shit. The test tube is still full, hardly touched. More than I will ever want.
10:22 [after looking in the mirror] Note, when failing to recall my pupils are normal, but when I recall the experience my pupils hugely dilate.
The rest is an account written a short time later from which the above description is derived.
After this, I took to the internet and read several trip reports and other information. I then felt reassured that S. Divinorum was safe (other than mishap through wandering etc), that some other people had vaguely similar themes present in their own salvia trips, and that I was not likely to break the universe. A few days later I resolved to confront my fear of the substance and go again, with an almost identical set-up.
A few days later I resolved to confront my fear of the substance and go again, with an almost identical set-up.
The toilet and bath lent themselves to become white picket fences once more, and presumably the ceiling lights became the sun. I found myself in a village by a row of cottages with white fences on a sunny day. I was a baby again, being pushed along in a pram. Above me, beside the pram on a bicycle rode an old man with a flat cap and drooping white moustache. When the man spoke he also had a Yorkshire accent. Not to me, he declared, ‘Oh! Here he is again!’
I thought, ‘This is the same place!’
The old man responded, ‘Of course it’s the same place! Why wouldn’t it be?’
I thought, ‘I need to get this written down!’
The man said, ‘There he goes! Running back to tell them all about it!’
This second trip seemed much briefer than the first and also less stressful and smoother and the entity again seemed friendly and benign. The next day however I remembered a more unpleasant aspect of the trip; and when I recalled it for one trip I recognised it also as a feature of the previous one. At the start of the trip I was sat against the door, legs outstretched, and when the world became that static field, and everything distorted, the world kept trying to fold and peel itself, like the pages of a book; this also applied to my own body. Some part of my mind resisted this mutilation strongly and it bordered on horrifying; it was like a warning kept going out that what was happening was extremely bad and was going to hurt – and should hurt, but never quite did. The buzzing energy was not only visual, but physical and felt sharp, like I was being cut right down the middle. It was most noticeable in my teeth; a static buzz that was quite horrible and I clenched my teeth and shut my eyes, which seemed to help.
It is now three days later, and I am thinking of trying again, largely to get over my fear. I am also curious to discover if I again return to the same place filled with warm, friendly Yorkshire gods. And all of this is in response to an impending ban.
COPYRIGHTS: All reports are copyright Erowid.
Experience Reports are the writings and opinions of the individual authors who submit them.
Some of the activities described are dangerous and/or illegal and none are recommended by Erowid Center.