A Healing Process
Citation:   Scotto. "A Healing Process: An Experience with AMT & MDMA (exp1764)". Erowid.org. Jun 12, 2000. erowid.org/exp/1764

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60 mg oral AMT (powder / crystals)
  150 mg oral MDMA  
Before saying anything about this combination, I should point out that some concerns exist that this combination can potentially be dangerous. The thinking is this: AMT is known to be a temporary MAO inhibitor, and combining MDMA with MAO inhibitors is known to be extremely dangerous. The 'technique' described in this report works like this: wait until as far into the AMT experience as possible before taking the MDMA, ideally around 8 to 10 hours into the experience. In this way, the peak effects of the AMT are not concurrent with the peak effects of the MDMA, and if any MAO inhibition from the AMT still exists, it is not sufficient to produce any ill effects once the MDMA has been taken. I've done this combination three times now, with no ill effects; six other people have also done this combination, as I've described above, with no ill effects. Nevertheless, you need to decide for yourself if this combination falls within your definition of 'acceptable risk.'

Now, I say 'technique' because I must confess: when I tried this combination the first time, I was not at all thinking about possible dangers. It has only become a technique for me after a successful, extremely powerful first experiment, which goes something like this:

I was in the midst of a period of extreme turmoil in my life. A relationship that had lasted over five years had come to a catastrophic ending, and I was suffering from a deep depression and malaise that had lasted many weeks by this point. I had also just started my own company, and the concurrent stress from the two events were taking a significant toll on my well being. I had lost my sense of humor, and found it extremely difficult to socialize in large groups of people - something that is typically very easy and enjoyable for me.

It had been over a year, if not more, since the first and only other time I had tried AMT. I had heard rumors, since that time, that AMT degrades easily, and I wondered if my AMT had degraded since then. My dose the first time I tried the substance was 40mg oral, a dose that was enjoyable; but I suspected I could easily ramp that up to good effect, and considering there was a possibility that my AMT had 'degraded', I decided to try an experiment with 60mg and see what would happen. I was alone in my apartment that night, with no significant responsibilities the next day.

The first two hours or so passed easily, so easily that I wondered if perhaps the substance had degraded to the point of inactivity. Only the slightest of occasional stomach burbles convinced me that anything at all was happening as a result of the AMT. Then suddenly, right on cue, the experience began to unfold at the two hour mark. I put in a DVD, 'Yellow Submarine,' and sat down to watch, and had a wonderful time for the next hour and a half or so as I became established in the peak effects. I was definitely very high, loving the music and the trippy visuals in the movie, and my mood was very elevated.

After the movie, however, I became very agitated. I was unable to find anything else to occupy my immediate attention, and so my thoughts soon turned to the state of my life at that point. It was not a pleasant ride at all: I spent the next eight hours or so enveloped in what I later described as a 'nervous breakdown', although I realize I am undoubtedly using a technical term inappropriately when I say that. What I mean by that is: for a solid eight hours or so, I found myself trapped by my own seemingly helpless state of despair concerning the relationship that I had lost. I found myself wrestling directly with questions and issues that I had been vigorously avoiding for weeks. There were physical effects associated with the experience: I remained curled in a ball on the floor and on the futon for much of the experience, and my head seemed to twitch violently in a somewhat regular pattern. The mental experience was of a loop, a vigorous, relentless loop of questions, fears, regrets, and lingering pain.

I eventually managed to crawl into my bed, thinking that the change of location to something more comfortable would improve my outlook, but this proved not to be the case. The emotional turbulence pursued me under my covers and maintained a relatively deep grip on me, and I began to wonder if I was going to remain in this state for an uncomfortably long period of time, or if there were some way to break out of this state and achieve some kind of resolution with myself. It was at that point that it occurred to me to try adding MDMA to the experience.

I argued with myself for nearly an hour about how wise this idea actually was. I suspected there was a possibility that MDMA would snap me out of this incredible funk, and in such a way that I might be able to draw some conclusions and learn some lessons from the intense emotional barrage I was living through. I knew that, for me, MDMA is typically a tool I can use to great effect if I have something very specific in mind to work on, and here the specifics were to address the overwhelming amount of information I had experienced as a very physical wave of AMT effects, and try to come to some sort of peace with what was happening to me, both on this specific drug experience, and in general in my life.

The argument I presented against doing the MDMA was that I have a healthy respect for the notion that, if a drug trip is not going well, adding more drugs is not at all an inherently healthy idea. As with most of the axioms I carry around with me, this is something I learned the hard way many years ago, during an acid trip gone horribly wrong back in Chicago. I had taken seven hits of acid that night, which for me at the time was a significant but manageable amount - usually. However, my girlfriend thought it would be fun to watch 'The Wall' that night; I'd never seen it, and I figured all the stories I'd heard were probably exaggeration, especially in light of how much of a 'macho drug guru' I believed myself to be in those days. Well - sure enough, watching the movie sent me into an enormous, miserable, frightening tailspin of horror, angst, and fear, and in the midst of my irrational calamity, I decided the only way to get out of it was to eat a big heaping dose of MDMA. Doing so turned out to be a monstrously bad idea; the MDMA allowed me to overcompensate for the bad acid trip by taking me into a deeply egotistical state of inflation, where I suddenly believed that all was right in the world, simply by my thinking so. I mistreated a number of people during that experience, and to this day feel I would rather have learned this particular lesson about my personality some other way.

But one of the things I have tried very hard to do over the years is grow myself into a responsible user of psychedelics: understanding risks, using these substances as psychological tools as well as recreational agents. And so I counter-argued to myself that I had learned that lesson well and shouldn't fear a recurrence of such immaturity; I was a different person now, many years and many experiences later. I was modeling the MDMA I intended to take as a tool for understanding what the AMT was offering me in terms of information and opportunity, and in that context, the experiment seemed worth pursuing. Moreover, I definitely felt that I had suffered enough on this AMT, and wanted to change the tone of it, especially after nearly eight solid hours of this cathartic state.

I managed to get 150mg of MDMA into my body at that point, and within a half an hour, I was up walking around, smiling, feeling an overwhelming sense of relief. The sun was coming in the windows; I was able to put on some music that I used to listen to a lot when I was in high school, music that wasn't precisely 'happy' but that definitely took me to a comfortable place. For the next three hours or so, I laid on my back, listening to music and analyzing what had just happened to me with the AMT. What the AMT experience taught me was that I had been holding deep within me a specific set of questions about why things in my relationship had happened the way they did, and that I had been holding onto those questions because I was still harboring unreasonable hope that I would get answers to those questions. But the simple and unfortunate fact is that I will never gain that kind of understanding about why my relationship collapsed, and that I needed to accept that fact and move on with my life. What the MDMA did for me in this context was provide me with a compassionate plateau from which to contemplate the AMT experience and truly absorb the lessons I needed to learn.

In the days immediately following the experience, my overall mood improved noticeably and significantly. As weeks went on, I was able to look back on that experience as a key experience in my healing process; it was intensely cathartic, but in a way that 'needed to happen,' so to speak. Although I still carry bitterness and unresolved issues at this time, I also have managed to find a level of peace about things, and have turned my attention to the future. I feel blessed that, in a time of darkness for me, these substances were able to play truly rewarding roles in my life; it validates very specifically my sense of having chosen a path with dignity and meaning.

* * * * *

Perhaps a week and a half later, I was with friends in town who were interested in having the AMT experience, and so 4 of us got together to try it. Two of us tried 80mg oral, and the other two tried 60mg. I was curious to see if any of the emotional material from my previous AMT/MDMA experience would resurface, but to my delight, I had a truly pleasurable ride, listening to music, chatting amiably, and essentially coasting through a wonderful empathogenic space. All four of us in fact enjoyed the experience quite a bit, and at the end, we each took 100mg of MDMA just because we could. I got a chance to have a very nice conversation with one of my companions as we walked in the sun that morning, and overall, I would rate this combination a favored one.

Exp Year: 1999ExpID: 1764
Gender: Male 
Age at time of experience: Not Given
Published: Jun 12, 2000Views: 32,728
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AMT (7), MDMA (3) : Combinations (3), Alone (16)

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