Mushrooms - P. cubensis
Citation: Red Pointer. "The Great Tree Assimilated My Being Into Hers: An Experience with Mushrooms - P. cubensis (exp115293)". Erowid.org. Apr 1, 2021. erowid.org/exp/115293
My "Ayahuasca" Trip on Mushrooms
February 23, 2021 was the two-year anniversary of my first mushroom experience – 3 grams of what I believe were Psilocybe Cubensis, a.k.a. “Golden Teachers”. I have been chipping away at my psychedelic naiveté ever since, documenting every experience, from 0.1 gram to 6 grams. Being a meticulous researcher, I wanted to understand every facet of what it means to be a “Psychonaut”, from preparation to integration. It has been an interesting exercise to look back at my experiences to see how each one has taken me a step further in my understanding of psychedelic consciousness. Most of them have been documented in short video clips that I would make throughout the experience, from ingestion to onset, to ecstatic descriptions of the peak, to the wonderful afterglow of the come-down, and then integration, which can last from days to weeks.
I began preparing for this blessed day weeks in advance. I even began an exercise schedule to augment my now two-year discipline of daily meditation. The mind-body connection was one of the teachings I was slow to integrate, but nevertheless, it finally sunk in to my awareness. On January 10, 2021, I made a conscious decision to cut alcohol out of my diet, realizing that it was a hindrance to my goal of improving neuroplasticity. I had been a heavy drinker (4 - 5 drinks a night) for 20+ years. The Mushroom had told me very early on that I needed to stop drinking, but I was reluctant to integrate the message for nearly two years. To my surprise, it was one of the easiest lifestyle changes I’ve ever made, with no withdrawal symptoms whatsoever. The anti-addictive property of psilocybin is fairly well documented, but I had no idea they could literally take my addiction from me.
So, with the day carved out on my schedule, and my prep-work done, I set my phone to vibrate mode and detached from the outside world. My only intention for the rest of the day was to surrender to the experience – nothing more. The dosage - 7.5 grams of Golden Teacher mushrooms.
A good friend of mine has perfected the confectionary art of blending chocolate, ginger, and a few other herbal ingredients, with finely ground mushroom powder. The resulting product solves an issue I have with eating dried mushrooms – nausea, resulting in vomiting. I had come to accept the phenomenon as just part of the process. Purging was a “rite of passage” into the psychedelic realms. Well, I had paid my dues, I thought, so discovering a way to avoid it seemed like pretty good Tek to me. Early that morning, two hours after eating a light cereal breakfast, I carved up the 10 gram mushroom infused chocolate bar, leaving 2.5 grams for another day. I spread a little peanut butter on the rest of the bar. It was a delicious “Reese’s Peanut Butter Cap”, with a slight crunchiness to it.
The protocol I use has evolved over the years. It has become less stringent as my familiarity with the effects of Magic Mushrooms has grown.
The protocol I use has evolved over the years. It has become less stringent as my familiarity with the effects of Magic Mushrooms has grown.
I still follow a few basic preparation steps:
· Check your mindset going into the experience and be prepared to abort if you do not feel ready (not to be confused with being anxious about the trip).
· Shower, take care of the dogs [cats, fish, whatever is dependent on you], and clean up any clutter in your setting. (You might need a safe space to dance during the afterglow period!)
With an eye-mask on hand, and a “Trip List” of music queued up, I’m ready to meditate in my recliner. My puke bucket is by my side, and comfy blankets are ready for when my body temperature drops. After calming my thoughts and becoming present, I’m ready for an uninterrupted four hours of surrendered bliss. I turn the music on, put the eye shades on, close my eyes and wait for the tale-tale signs of the geometric vortex – the gateway to the sub-conscious. It’s only been twenty minutes and the spiraling lattice-work becomes visible behind closed eyelids. I’m going in.
This trip was unique in a number of ways. For one, I had never dosed this high, yet the only anxiety I experienced occurred the day before. Falling asleep was challenging. The day of, my mindset was in the best shape it had ever been in. I attribute this partly to what I had learned on a previous trip – set no intentions! Intentions can frustrate the experience when things don’t go the way I “intended” them to go. Now, I only have one intention going into a trip, and that is to simply surrender to whatever the Mushroom has in store for me. I have come to understand that it is the Mushroom’s intention that matters, and I have come to realize that the Mushroom is benevolent in its intentions. It always has your best interest in mind, even if you think the trip is challenging.
The Trip – Mother Aya on Shrooms
Let me say up front that I have no experience with Ayahuasca. I have studied the medicine and the reported experiences of numerous participants of sacred ceremonies in Amazonian settings. The good and the bad experiences are fairly well understood from this outsider’s perspective. That said, I feel like I would recognize “Mother Aya” if I ever encountered her. The term “Mother Aya” is a common colloquial used to describe the mothering nature of the experience with Ayahuasca. Ayahuasca loosely translates to, “the vine of the souls”, and is credited with restoring a sense of connection to nature and to the souls of ancestors. What I am about to describe is my connection to that same Spirit, and her loving embrace and care for me.
Shortly after the initial onset of fractal geometry that is common with all mushroom doses, the tunnel appeared, and I happily ventured in. With eyes closed, and the darkness provided by the eye-mask, I began to feel the loss of spatial awareness. As my limbs began to fade away, it became clear that my spiritual body was free to orient itself however it liked: vertically, horizontally, upside-down. I was no longer aware of the gravitational force holding me to my recliner. I found myself lying face-up on the ground, under a great tree. I was somewhere in between the grounds’ surface and the roots of the tree below, looking up at the trunk of the great tree. I saw the Mushroom’s white mycelium tendrils wrapping themselves around the branches of the tree’s root system. Then it began to wrap itself around me. Suddenly, I realized that I was being decomposed. The mycelium was breaking me apart, atom by atom, and shuttling my nutrients to the tree. The Great Tree, as I later called her, pulled me in through the mycelium, into her roots, and assimilated my being into hers. My arms became branches, and I remember swinging them about in a joyful dance. “I’m alive again!”, I realized. I was now a part of her, yet fully aware and conscious of “myself”. I brought my hands together to pray my meditation mantra. In an altered and robust voice, I chanted, “My Spirit is God. My Soul is being perfected.” My fingers touched together and I felt no flesh on them, only bone.
What followed that seemingly brief ego-death experience was an “art show” of magnificent designs and colors and symbolism. There was a distinguishable pattern to the presentation of the art. First, there was a long stretching yawn, followed by an acute sense of smell; the smell of a singular, strong odor which filled my olfactory awareness. There was an inhalation of breath that seemed to last for minutes-on-end, filling my lungs beyond normal capacity. A flood of white light filled my field of vision, and then the visionary art appeared.
One of my dogs, a miniature dachshund named Lucy, loves to snuggle beside me while I am tripping. She seems to love the smells emanating from me, which normally I cannot smell. However, when I dose upwards of 3 grams, my sense of smell is on-par with hers. I can smell everything, even complex smells. So each vision seemed to come with a unique smell associated with it.
I can smell everything, even complex smells. So each vision seemed to come with a unique smell associated with it.
Sometimes I could smell my own BO. Sometimes I would smell Lucy in all her glory. There was phantosmia (olfactory hallucinations) phenomenon, as well. Sometimes I smell pine or cannabis when neither of these substances are around me. This time I smelled pineapple. It’s a strange, yet also quite funny phenomenon, which is one reason why I shower before my trips.
The artwork was difficult to comprehend. I kept telling myself, “Make a note. You won’t remember this when it’s over!” Some of it I do remember, quite vividly. The art was always radial, like the gills of a mushroom cap. Often the art included beautiful glowing translucent pastel mushrooms, which seemed to tower over the rest of the art. There was always a central eye as the focal point of the art. The patterns and symbols were often Mayan-like, but sometimes they had a “digital” feel, like circuitry. I could see the movement of light particles in the circuits, and colorful animations of light could be seen in each piece of art work. The central eye would sometimes be a part of what looked like a headdress, adorned with a feathered brow. As usual, there were pairs of eyes, floating disembodied all around me. These were not a part of the art, but instead were how the Mushroom entities communicated with me, through expression. Because the eye-pairs are so common in my trips, I have speculated on what they might represent. Initially, I believed them to be the eyes of our ancestors, peering in on this mortal’s sojourn into their realm. But lately, I’m inclined to believe they represent the “spores” of humanity yet to be born – future instantiations of human life that the Mushroom (Consciousness) will one day awaken with a soul. Or, they may represent both.
Often during the art presentations, a pair of these peering eyes would look at me with excitement and glance off to my right. It was as if the eyes were telling me to get up and “go over there”, to dance to the music. However, I resisted the urge and remained in my recliner to see what was coming next. Then “they” showed me these round, fist-sized, gold metallic objects – some kind of technology – with printed circuit boards embedded in them. I was afraid to ask what they were, which I now regret, as I can only speculate. Is this how they connect with us? Is this how they generate their art? Is this spore technology?
I cannot remember how long the experience of “ego death” was. It seemed to happen quickly, and early on, but when I finally returned to myself, some two hours had passed. I heeded the suggestion of the eyes and got up from my recliner. Still “drunk”, I had trouble making it to the restroom. The grain patterns in the planks of wood flooring became individual streams, each flowing in opposite directions. Sometimes eyes would appear in the streams, or full human faces, or three-sided faces, as depicted in the Three-headed Christian Trinity sculpture. I told myself, “Oh, this is just my closed-eye visuals overlaying the wood surface.” While still staring at the floor, I closed my eyes but did not see anything. Then I raised my head, with eyes still closed, and saw the trunk of the Great Tree, directly in front of my face. In the coarse, dark-brown bark of the tree were two weathered eyes, looking directly into my soul. The song “Ha”, by Kalya Scintilla, captured my attention, and I danced a dance of regeneration. The dance was simple. With palms down, pressing toward the earth, I crouched to the beat of the music, alternating my feet every third step. Then, with palms up, pressing toward the sky, I raised up with the beat until I was fully outstretched, gazing to the heavens. “Death and rebirth”, interpreted.
The Take Away
The “take away” message that I received from the Mushroom is a very simple one. The message of the Mushroom is, “Regeneration.” Regeneration, as exemplified through the lifecycle of the Mushroom; and rejuvenation, expressed through the creative processes the Mushroom inspires in us. There’s hardly much to integrate there! But what a glorious experience they gave me to embed this truth in me.
I still consider myself “psychedelically naïve”, with so much more to experience and understand concerning the Mushroom. But I have begun to see a pattern concerning doses. Aside from micro-dosing, low doses of psilocybin mushrooms (1 - 2 grams) seem to be beneficial as a maintenance dose. This range reminds us of where we come from, and might even provide some beneficial insights into our psyche. Higher doses, in the range of 3 – 4 grams, can be considered therapeutic, good for self-discovery and integration of new awareness's into our natural lives. I have even experienced Samadhi on 3 grams, which dramatically altered my spiritual life and beliefs. On 5 - 6 grams, I have had mystical experiences that delved into childhood trauma, and gained fascinating insight into things like OCD and substance addiction. On 7+ grams, all I can say with one experience under my belt is, “The Mushroom took my ego down so fast that all there was left to do was enjoy the experience.” With the ego out of the way, there is no therapy. There is nothing left to fix in a dead ego. The Mushroom is free to playfully show you around the Kingdom.
I still consider myself a novice psychonaut, as well. Perhaps when I have 10 or more experiences in the range of doses described above, I will be able to describe a larger universe of phenomenology, therapeutic effects, and perhaps one day I’ll be able to consider myself a Shaman, of sorts. In the mean-time, there is no resignation, no apprehension on my part, to continue this pursuit of the mind and all that the Mushroom has to teach us.
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