Blue Lotus (Nymphaea nouchali var caerulea) & White Lotus (N. odorata)
Citation: 3MX. "Flower Euphoria: An Experience with Blue Lotus (Nymphaea nouchali var caerulea) & White Lotus (N. odorata) (exp16139)". Erowid.org. Oct 25, 2004. erowid.org/exp/16139
Over the year I've gained adequate enough experience with lotus of two types (blue, Nymphaea caerula, and white, N. odorata) to give a general summary of the substance's effects. My supplies of the flowers consisted of 10g of blue, shredded and dried flowers and 30g of white, dried half-flowers, ordered from separate online sites. I've tried the lotus as a tea and by smoking, but my results from smoking the flower are inconclusive, so only the tea experiences are provided. However, smoked lotus DID seem psychoactive. Also, I sometimes eat the boiled flowers left after tea preparation, though whether this practice enhances psychoactivity is not obvious.
I prepared lotus tea on various occasions by heating the plant matter in a tea infuser ball or by brewing the flowers in a filtered coffee maker. 1-2 tablespoons of blue lotus shreds or 2 halves (of varying sizes) of white lotus would be used in this manner. The tea's color and taste varied by lotus species, but not by brewing practice (perhaps the difference could have been due to the difference in flower-species 'form'; shredded vs. halves). Blue lotus tea was deep green-brown in color with a pronounced bitter and vegetable taste. White lotus tea was a paler shade (similar to green tea), less bitter, and less vegetable. Both types had a nice 'flowery' taste.
The effects of either tea type are similar enough to be lumped together. However, the intensity of effects seems to vary widely. This may be due to quickly-developed but short-lived tolerance; the tea tends to be more effective one day, then less the next. A few days of abstinence seems to increase the flower's effectiveness. Perhaps flower stength varies by the bud, instead?
The primary effects, which come on within minutes, are euphoria, brief tachyardia, and pressure centered in the forehead. Sedation sets in slowly over time, and tends to be mild. Thus, I consider lotus to be more of a euphoriant than a narcotic. The euphoria is like a cross between a caffeine-rush and a good nicotine 'high,' [i.e. what I liken to 'lovesickness euphoria'] which is strongest with the tachyardia and mellows once the heart settles down. This leads me to believe that the active component could be a dopamine agonist, like aporphine. [however, this also leads me to believe that lotus may have habit-forming potential. its use is 'rewarding' and manageable]
Lotus euphoria is often accompanied by positive mood-shift, increased pleasure from normally pleasing activities (pleasure enhancement), and (possibly) mild sensory enhancement [i suspect it has enhanced my sense of sight (color vividness and visual clarity) and taste on several occasions]. Additionally, lotus tends to enhance the pleasureability of common substances; alcohol for certain and caffeine likely [enhanced stimulation/sedation uncertain].
Since lotus's effects are generally subtle, the duration of effects is hard to determine. I'd estimate the effects last anywhere from 1 to 4 hours, with pronounced euphoria fading first while mood-shift and sedation persist longer. I haven't noticed any morning-after effects.
Over all, I'd advise that lotus'd be used as an euphoriant in its own right or as an enhancer of other substances (experimentation worthy). I imagine that the ancient Egyptians used the lotus as a recreational infusion in wine [preparation most supported by documentation], though the same preparation would likely have use in a religious/ritual setting. I'm uncertain whether the lotus could inspire a full-blown religious trance on its own, but I've yet to consume large quantities of the flower at one time.
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