Citation: Endemic. "The Skin of Reality: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (exp23865)". Erowid.org. Oct 4, 2007. erowid.org/exp/23865
I started out smoking the dried leaf. My first experiences were in peaceful, semi dark places at home. I did not use a sitter, at first. I would recommend that others do. I did not use music at first, and in later excursions, could not hear it even with the headphones on. Divinorin-A has an affinity for the Kappa Opioid receptors, which directly affect human perception. I have extreme sensitivity to Salvia, which apparently many others do not. Maybe its all the years of smoking pot, for I have a rather large lung capacity, and can hold the smoke for the requisite 20-30 seconds. One good hit with a regular Bic lighter is enough to make me set the bong down quickly and lay back. It is important to keep the flame in the bowl throughout the hit, as Divinorin-A has a high vaporization point. I use a metal bowl, which seems to help keep the temperature high. A water pipe is a must for me. Otherwise the high temperature burns my throat quite severely.
After taking a FULL hit through my bong, I feel the Universe squeezing me. Thats when I know to set it down, hold my breath, and start counting the seconds; I never quite make it to 30 before consensual reality starts to peel away from me like the segments of one of those Chocolate Oranges. I then seem to feel very heavy (Salvia Gravity) and the next thing I know, I am the 'skin' of the underlying Universe(s). After that I seem to live another complete life without a noticeable transition. I always 'wake up' in the other life with a sense of disorientation, and only the most recent memories, which I retain after baseline. This is entirely subjective, but the best way I can describe the experience is to say that I feel I am slipping through a very thin membrane that seperates my reality from other realities. It is this very thin seperation from concurrent 'realities' that Salvia seems to want to show me. This is the lesson for me, reality is what you choose, only inertia keeps you in consensual reality.
When I 'wake up' in that other life, it seems as though I am turning my head a little farther than it should turn, to see something important, and when I turn my head the other way (with resistance), I see the 'skin' of conventional reality covering what I thought was real (and maybe is) with it's carpet, furniture, cat, whatever is around you, until the other reality is gone. After that I feel a bit disoriented, and quite sure that what I see is only a product of my perceptional limitations (3D + Time Construct). The whole process lasts about 5 minutes when smoked, but seems like an eternity.
The Salvia experience shows that there is a very thin skin between what we percieve as reality, and an infinitude of alternate realities. It's just beneath the surface of your perception all the time. Salvia has changed me, in that I now believe that there is a switch in our brains (the Kappa receptor sites) that is like a tuning knob on an old TV. The kicker is, that after obtaining this knowledge, you may not need the plant to 'change the channel' as it were. The 'membrane' is surprisingly thin.
I must say though, that the tactile nature of moving between 'realities' is very strong, not like a wave washing over you, but rather like something touching every nanometer of your skin, including the pores. Definitely not for everybody. After some experiences with the Green Lady (there's usually a benevolent female presence in the visions, which I hear, though I have never seen her) I do indeed feel that consensual reality can be as fluid as you want it to be.
The lasting after-effect seems to be a quiet knowledge that what I percieve as reality, is really only in my head. This knowledge empowers me and puts a smile on my face! It's good to know that all is illusion (Maya), for then I may influence or transform it. This is the essence of Don Juan's teachings as recorded by Carlos Casteneda.
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