Citation: Dankskank. "Existentialism and the Authentic Self: An Experience with 1P-LSD (exp107898)". Erowid.org. Feb 9, 2016. erowid.org/exp/107898
||(blotter / tab)
Before I begin, I quiet my mind for a moment to focus my intention for the trip: I seek healing, wholeness and insight into myself and my identity. I ask for the experience to be whatever I need to go through at this particular moment of my life. In the notebook I'm planning on taking with me as I trip, I write “Identity (and it's relation to) feeling more confident (as well as its relation to) healthy/adaptive vs. wounded/dysfunctional”.
After getting in this frame of mind, I place the tab under my tongue and rearrange a couple of things in the apartment before I take a walk around the neighborhood. It is 1pm when I place the blotter under my tongue. I expect the come-up to take an hour or two, so I'm slightly surprised to feel the drug kicking in after I make it to the park near my home. I begin to regret not having brought sunglasses with me (something that continues to bug me for the rest of the trip). As I'm walking, I start to feel a slightly altered body sense. Vision starts to change slightly by the time I plant myself at a bus stop. Colors are becoming more vivid and I'm starting to think about “deeper” things. By 1:38pm, I'm noticing the perceptual and cognitive alterations very clearly.
Time seems to pass more slowly. “Hell is other people”, the popular line from Sartre's “No Exit” comes to my mind as I contemplate the effects of society upon the individual's behaviors, thoughts and sense of identity. More specifically, I start thinking about how much my identity has been influenced by the judgements and praises of others. A body high begins to make itself apparent and I feel slightly dissociated, euphoric and less solid than I normally am.
As the afternoon presses on, I'm traveling around the city, by bus and on foot, in pretty densely populated areas- a local cafe, a chain bookstore, a chain cafe, another local cafe, back home- wishing I had at least that barrier of dark glass between my dilated pupils and the sober eyes of the people around me. Though I felt some distress worrying about how high I looked to others, I was very stimulated by my setting (something I don't recommend to those who don't have a considerable amount of prior psychedelic experience and several bad trips under their belts). Walking around, watching others, listening to their conversations, observing and analyzing my own cognitions. I find the dynamism of interacting with the “world out there” to be a welcome change from holing myself up in the darkness of my room to explore the “inner reaches of outer space” with markedly less sensory distractions.
Some of the things that occur to me as I'm tripping are common thoughts that come to mind when I'm tripping. I consider the fact that the horrors of life are less terrifying because I'm trying to cope with (or avoid doing so) the reality that I'm going to die one day and more terrible because I'm actually coping with the realization that I'm going to continue to live for however many more decades I may. It's less that the end of consciousness is threatening, its that I may go on suffering, struggling and experiencing things I don't want ti experience for an agonizing amount of time. Either death is not the end of consciousness, in which case, big fucking deal- I die and then I go on experiencing experiences or it IS the end and then I have very little to worry about. In fact, that'll be the biggest relief of them all! Normally, in everyday waking consciousness, I'm very worried about failing to “make it” in society i.e. continuing to pay the bills, make it through college, get a job I actually care about, not get arrested, become more sane, etc.
As I'm walking around, I begin to feel (for lack of a better word) a sense of indefiniteness (another common experience when I trip). I feel the magical power of uncertainty and things that are undefined. The power of infinity seems to lie in this magical space of non-specific potentiality. Things I'm used to seeing in spiritual writings take on an immediacy that feels like an obvious truth, so real I can feel it in every cell. The universe, as I experience it, seems to be little more than the play of two opposing and complimentary forces: active/passive, creating/destroying, etc. and the same basic theme seems to be universal-- that of the ultimacy of the infinite and undefined and the inadequacy of the particular and finite. The vitality of the eternal, immaterial spirit and the fragility of form and matter, constantly succumbing to entropy.
I'm walking around more, enjoying the sun while it lasts and laughing in the face of wind and clouds, significantly lowering the temperature. The world around me is glowing and moving subtly. My musings continue to carry me in existentially volatile territories, but the starkness of my thoughts is enrapturing; every moment of it feels amazing. I feel like I could die, even violently, and simply enjoy the beauty of it happening. I begin to wonder if this sense of the indefinite and “selfless” (in the Buddhist sense) is really just a copout. In my normal life, I struggle with finding a strong sense of self. So, is this really a transcendental state of going beyond the limitations of my particular ego identity or just a regression to a pre-personal state? I'm not sure. I begin to consider the possibility that I'm ultimately the final arbiter of my life- there is no external or even internal force, greater than my own conscious self, keeping me alive, making choices. There's literally no other force but that which I normal experience and identify with and call “I” which will sustain me, care for me, be responsible for me, etc. This is a stark notion to entertain but, buffered by the euphoria of the drug, I take it as just another thought that is beautiful and enrapturing amongst my various musings.
As the trip wears on, I consider again the relationship between my identity and the influence of others. I continue to feel existentially naked because I'm tripping around other people who aren't (I don't know how to interact with them in a conventional way because I'm completely unshackled by the scripts and social roles that normally define what I'm supposed to say and how I'm supposed to act). More than anything, I don't want to freak anyone out with whatever eccentricity might come out of me- that would feel like irresponsibility of my part, having decided to trip in public. I think about how I've historically identified as a sort of rebel or outsider and begin to wonder how much of that is vain posturing. How worthwhile is it really to be a lonely outsider? Certain I've dabbled in both extremes and have also whitewashed a great deal of my personality in order to fit in an be accepted by others. I start to wonder who my 'tribe' really is. Taking note of the neighborhoods I've been traversing, I start to worry that I'll run into someone I don't want to run into- someone from my past who would prey upon me, and sure enough, as I'm walking across a major street, a car honks as I'm standing at a crosswalk. Of all of the people I wouldn't want to run into, at least it was him and not one of the others. I wave and keep walking, increasing my pace hoping that he doesn't follow me- he doesn't. Of course this would happen while I'm tripping.
By early evening (around 8pm), I start to feel more sober than tripped out, with only some altered body sense remaining by 10ish and continuing on into the late evening (2am). All in all, this experience felt very much like traditional LSD, if not exactly like it. Lasts a very long time, significantly alters one's sense of self, time, and visual perception but doesn't make it near impossible to function in public (like shrooms often do to me). For only one tab, this stuff seemed pretty potent, but maybe that's just because the acid I've had in the past was low quality and this RC stuff is hot and fresh. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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