Mushrooms - P. cubensis
Citation: cloned2bewild. "Swallowed by the Ground: An Experience with Mushrooms - P. cubensis (exp115672)". Erowid.org. Sep 4, 2021. erowid.org/exp/115672
Substance: Psilocybin (P. cubensis)
Dose: Approx. between 1.5 and 1.75 g
Additions: A few hits of pure cannabis (T+5) and a glass of red wine (T+8)
Time: End of July, Western Germany, 1 pm
This is the first time I can report about a full experience using psilocybin. I used a threshold dose hiking Northern Spain last year, that was similar to the last hours of the trip but nothing comparable.
The psilocybin came in the form of chocolate hearts, each allegedly 1g of dried mushroom. They were grown by a friend who is really into doing that, so I knew they were really good quality. I had stored them for a couple of months in the fridge. My friend told me they are quite potent despite being of the sort P. cubensis, which is supposedly of middle potency. He recommended to start with one gram. As I had taken LSD before and didn’t want to trip too low, I decided to take in between 1.5 and 1.75 grams as I have read that is a pretty usual dose. My intention was something around the lines of “show me what my relationship with nature is”.
My intention was something around the lines of “show me what my relationship with nature is”.
I was visiting a friend in the countryside in the middle of nowhere in Western Germany. My friend started to work in a liberal-left community as a volunteer and I stayed with him for 11 days to enjoy nature, hike and get my mind from my head into my hands and work a bit. My friend wanted to join me in this experience originally, but later on decided not to, because he had too much responsibility at work and I could sense his anxious and stressed energy that I knew wouldn’t help me on my trip. So I decided to do it on my own. Being a psychotherapist and having a long-term history of my own psychotherapy, bodywork and mindfulness meditation, I thought that I can do this on my own, which proved to be true.
I was prepared with good food and water and a blanket and everything that you need to have to stay the whole day outside. I was scouting for a while, then I found a beautiful wild meadow, close to the edge of a forest, not too far away from my accommodation. I took the whole dosage at the same time. I decided to take a little less than originally planned, so a little under 1.75 g at around 1 pm. I had only eaten a small, light sandwich in the morning, my stomach was entirely empty. I was sitting on my blanket for at least 30 minutes waiting for something to happen. I was starting to wonder if it was too little or if my friend sold me solely chocolate. At one point I started to get a little bit sleepy, so I decided to lie down and started to realize, that my perception slightly changed as if I could see everything a little bit sharper and more saturated. My eyes became really heavy so I decided to close them for a while. When I opened them again a few minutes later I looked up into the sky. A bird of prey was circulating over me and I had the impression he talked to me in his thoughts and said: “Your journey is about to start now”. And so it went.
From that moment on I felt the effects of the mushroom were just flooding me. Very different to the experience of LSD, which for me was more gentle and subtle in the beginning. My mouth got extremely dry and I felt a bit nauseous and drank some water.
My body had become entirely heavy and I felt that I could only lie down. So I put on some music that I had picked for the trip, put it on the speaker and lay down. I can remember how an airplane was flying right over me. And the sound of it was making me feel ill as if it was forcefully destroying the peace of nature. When I lay down I couldn’t keep my eyes open. I went in with, whatever happens, let it unfold. I started to feel myself losing my humanity. I felt into a deep trance, only being half awake, that must have lasted between 10 and 15 minutes usual time, but felt as if it lasted ages. There were all kinds of shapes and inner visions coming up that I can’t all recollect. I was surprised at being so sedated by the mushrooms, as LSD was a very clear and bright experience. This was less cerebral but more somatic. I remember how my body was starting to dissolve and was integrated more and more into the soil. At one point I felt as if I was dying and I could sense a deep terror. But there was also a very gentle and calm voice inside of me saying: “This is an important experience, let it happen, don’t resist too much, it will be okay”. This “wise voice” was following me through my whole trip. It felt warm and nurturing. My rational thinking must have ceased at one point because I couldn’t tell anymore where I am and what I really was. I think for a short moment I “lost my mind”. My body felt as if it was swallowed into the ground, dissolved and I was composted and then put back together to come back with a body.
When I opened my eyes I could see that nature was extremely wild around me. So many different kinds of flies and insects. So much noise. I felt that they were all kind of autonomous but actually belonging to the soil. The grass moved and looked like flowing rivers. The tree barks looking if they are melting and dropping on the floor. Everything was moving and breathing. I had this thought: “You poisoned yourself”, but I started to regulate my own breathing, deep and strong inhalations and exhalations. My body felt like it was producing a lot of energy, I was sweating a lot, feel warm and cold at the same time. I sat in this weird “wonderland” for another 30 minutes, tried a few times to get up. I felt extremely nauseous at this point and too weak to stand.
At one point, with what felt like all my willpower, I got up and started to move my limbs and stretch and breathe to regulate myself and the state of panic I was in. I remember looking up into the sun, feeling as if it was a spirit, a deity that was welcoming me to come back from the ground. Remove myself from the darkness of the underground and step into the light. I felt the strong presence of a female superpower and attributed it to nature, to Mother Earth. It felt like being a child that wants to emancipate himself from his mother. Standing upright, my feet solidly on the ground and connecting it with the sky felt like an act of rebellion. The vertical alignment of my body felt like a brazen provocation of nature. I had visions of the early humans becoming separated from nature, I felt like I was reliving this early human trauma. I was wearing a sun hat and the shadow that my body was casting on the ground reminded me of humans looking like mushrooms sometimes too. Under an act of gathering all my physical power I decided it’s time to leave this place. I took off my shirt, provisionally tying my hiking shoes without socks and packing my stuff. I felt like walking up the hill to a bench that I knew that felt safe and known for me. While leaving it was as if nature was speaking to me: “You are free to go, but your body will always be mine, one day you have to hand it back to me”. I felt a lot of gratitude in that moment as if any future moment that I will experience will be a gift.
It felt good starting to walk up the hill. The walk which would usually take 20 minutes was becoming an Odyssey. I kept walking under the sun, like an exhausted man trying to cross an endless desert, the sun beaming down on me, worried if someone saw me and if I would look strange. At one point I reached the bench and sat down.
I could feel that the trip had peaked and that walking has helped me to feel a bit more human again. The narrating voice in my mind that comments everything and creates the ego just came back and tried to make sense out of everything that has had happened. I felt intense waves of emotions and visions of all women that I had encountered in my life including my mother, close friends, romances and romantic relationship partners. They were all portrayed in the best possible light, they seemed divine to me and I felt no matter how difficult the experience with some of them might have been, I could see all the positive things that they had given to me. I was extremely humbled.
At one point I could only say “...thank you...thank you...thank you” in total repetition. Soberness also came back in waves, I started to feel more rational again and things started to seem more profane. I looked at my phone. My friend had messaged me asking if I am alright and I said yes and asked if he wants to join me and bring some positive energy. He messaged that he would come now. That was the moment when a car passed me and I thought: “The worst thing that could happen now would be if those were the cops”. And it was: The cops!! I knew they passed me but had to come back because the street was a dead end road. It was really in the middle of nowhere and it was very unlikely that they were driving by. I started to panic and feel that I need to react soberly now. I decided that I will bury my remaining mushrooms and the cannabis I carried under the bench, so that I am at least in a positive legal position, as consumption is not prohibited in Germany, only possession. I decided to get up and text my friend: “I will come towards you”. I wasn’t sure anymore if I had fantasized the cops and if it was my mind playing tricks on me. On my way towards my friend the cops came back. I decided to look mature and adult and convinced myself that they are not after me – the lone peace warrior from the field. And they weren’t. When I saw my friend that I know for almost twenty years I was happy to see a familiar face. He had brought me some candy and a smile on his face. He confirmed that those were the cops, but he also had no clue why they were here. Just patrolling probably.
My friend and I moved to a calm spot that was safe and known at the edge of a field full of golden, ripe grain. He had a guitar. We smoked a bit of weed together that he had brought. I only took a few puffs and ate all of my food that I had brought and was in a very happy and pleasant mood full of celebration. My friend and I made some music together and we sang and improvised lyrics. It was very nice and bonding. When the sun was setting we went back to the community.
I had a nice dinner that I cooked and ate together with a nice glass of wine. At this point I felt mostly normal again and quite fearless. I felt as if I had climbed a mountain, exhausted but proud. I had a long, deep sleep. No headaches or anything.
I am happy that I have had this experience. I think the dose was too high though. I think a peak that would have not been so deep from the beginning would have taken off the moments of terror and panic. But it is what it is and I know that I have and will make a lot out of this experience. I will take a lot of gratitude for the gifts of everyday life with me, the appreciation for things that come from nature constantly and this huge reminder that everything that I can possess in this life is on loan and is going to be returned on the threshold.
It was very different from LSD, which surprised me a lot. As being quite a cerebral person LSD suits me easier I think, but I am interested in exploring psilocybin further, especially from a spiritual and therapeutic angle. I feel a trip sitter would be great for the peak in an environment that I totally know from everyday life. I feel I could have stayed longer without changing place and could have enjoyed the time after the peak better.
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