Citation: Ed. "It Was Dream Time: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (20x extract) (exp108016)". Erowid.org. Jun 28, 2019. erowid.org/exp/108016
Dream Time with Salvia
I am writing this within twenty-four hours of my first experience using Salvia Divinorum.
I have had extensive experience with psychotropic substances over the decades, mostly, but hardly exclusively with LSD. My desire to try Salvia comes from my interest in the herbs and plants used by shamans and ritual magic workers around the world.
My main interest is dream work. I have been recording and studying my dreams, and dream states, since the early 80s.
I have been recording and studying my dreams, and dream states, since the early 80s.
It has been a rather frustrating study in that so few people seem interested in dreams beyond getting someone to tell them what they mean, or studying them solely within the context of this or that “school of theory” regarding dreams.
I mention this because it plays a very large part in my experience. One that I was aware of before it was even over.
I bought the Salvia online, avoiding the companies that stressed the “getting high” aspect of their products. It was 20X, which, even though I have zero experience with Salvia, seemed to me to be a good starting point. I bought one gram. When it arrived I wondered if they had made a mistake, this tiny little baggie, is that all?
Well, they did say it was a concentrate. I read the tables about dosage, which didn't help given that I don't own a scale. So I would have to fall back on my own experience. I went out and bought a hash pipe and screens for the first time since the 80's. That made me feel ancient.
Given the duration of the “high” I decided I would try it during my “writing time” after the family had gone to bed. This would also be the best way to see how it affected my dream state. Since we are a family of non-smokers I popped out onto the back porch to light up.
Because it was a hash pipe and that the Salvia was a concentrate, I used the smallest measuring spoon I could find in the kitchen, ¼ of a teaspoon, and filled 1/3 of that with Salvia. Looking at it in the bowl I thought that it wouldn't even come close to being a good single hit of pot.
Perfect! What could go wrong?
I stepped out onto the porch, a stunning evening. A full moon shone down on the backyard with just a few clouds passing by, warm (for Febuary) my mood was totally up-beat, I had just recently got my groove back for the novel that had been on “pause” since December. I fired up.
I kept the flame to the bowl for about two seconds, I felt a good hit. The bowl had a screw on lid with a small hole it the top, so I tucked the pipe into my jacket pocket and held my breath for as long as I could. I was going to get every last molecule.
The first thing I noticed was the very rapid onset of “perception shift” that I always feel with drugs like this. Not alarming at all. At first.
I needed to get back in the house. This wasn't a thought, it was an instinctive action. I opened the door and collapsed on the floor. I was “tripping a mile a minute” as we used to say in the old days. Now, here is where it gets interesting. The “perception shift” was quite familiar, although at that moment I was not realizing it.
The “perception shift” was quite familiar, although at that moment I was not realizing it.
It was not an LSD shift, I was, for lack of a better descriptive, “tripping” but I was not tripping. I was hallucinating, but not in the “normal” way.
Everything became 2-D, there was no distinction between object and observer, we were all one. As I looked around I saw my kitchen, and there was no “difference” between myself and the kitchen table, or the fridge, or my wife, who had just come into the kitchen to find out why the hell I was going “Whooooa, whooooa.” in a rather loud voice.
It gave her quite a start to find me on the floor. As she started to help me up I felt the “Salvia Gravity” It wasn't so much like a weight pressing down as it was trying to move through some dense medium, like honey. She finally got me on my feet, I still could not distinguish her from the dishwasher, she had me by the front of my sweater, looking me closely in the eyes and said, “What the fuck are you on?”
She was always very perceptive that way. We have done many Dead Shows together.
I couldn't speak at that point, I was experiencing a profound temporal shift which did not allow me to verbilize anything besides “whoooooa” She pulled me into the dining room and sat me down in a chair, pushed a pad of paper and pen in front of me and asked if I could write in place of speech.
At that point I was rapidly loosing altitude and could find my voice. I also realised what had just happened and was very excited about that. I told her, very briefly, that I had been trying a new drug that I had read about online, that I was coming down fast and would..probably..be okay in a few minutes.
She looked at me very closely for a bit, then asked, “What did you take?”
I told her what I knew about Salvia, Mazatec Indians in Mexico, and how I was just fine, really, you can go back to bed now.
She did. She knows me so well.
This experience was familiar to me for a good reason. It is what I have recorded when I am in deep, and I mean...deep...R.E.M. Sleep. It was Dream Time. I went into a deep R.E.M. State with no preliminaries, no gradual shifts in perception that we all experience in our dream state.
As in R.E.M, depth perception became optional, objects were of importance only as they related to the reason I was having the dream. And therein was the problem.
I wasn't dreaming. My wife, the kitchen sink, all one, all the same. And time.... Didja ever notice how in dream time an entire day can go by, and yet the time that passed between going to bed and getting up to take a piss has only been a couple of hours? The record for me was experiencing four months in one night.
Compressed time. I am standing (barely) in my kitchen while my mind is trying to compress everything I am seeing into Dream Time Format. I was experiencing time in milliseconds, with each millisecond demanding that I choose to do something in that particular millisecond.
Milli-second One: Make a sandwich. My brain sends the command to my feet to walk over to the bread box.
Milli-second Two: No, get a glass of water instead. My brain sends the command to go to the sink.
Milli-second Three: No, go visit Cousin Mary in Indiana.
So on and so forth. Because I was in “Real Time” I wasn't going anywhere at all. Not without help. And the whole time my “dream self” was being ever so unhelpful by telling me that “everything is normal. No problems here.”
I don't know if my work with dreams “colored” my experience, has caused me to reach conclusions that are only true for me, or if, as I suspect, Salvia divinorium is a chemical “key” to taking the express elevator to a deep R.E.M. State.
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