Mushrooms - P. cubensis
Citation: libcap27. "Hubris Nightmare: An Experience with Mushrooms - P. cubensis (exp24258)". Erowid.org. Mar 27, 2006. erowid.org/exp/24258
I (or someone like me) had this bad trip in 1999. It taught me a lot about myself and the mushroom. I had the good/mixed fortune of coming into posession of a lot of dried/cultivated P. cubensis. At the time, I had been through a lot in my personal life, including a divorce after a decade of marriage--also financial crisis and crippling depression. I had a decent amount of familiarity with many different psychoactive drugs including lots of trips with LSD and lower dose mushrooms (2-7 gms). I was going through a mental mix of self-loathing/'who-gives-a-shit-about-anything' and some bizarre/dangerous 'psychedelic-machismo' (meaning, thinking I was some type of superfreak capable of massive doses). I had never previously had a 'bad trip' on any substance. I was lonely and feeling very sorry for myself and considering that maybe I really was unworthy of love and deserved to be miserable. Obviously, this is a terrible set to go into a massive dose of P. cubensis. But wait! It gets worse...add a terrible setting--that of a public rock concert amidst about 18000 people. I went alone. I had one good thought--I drove, but brought taxi fare just in case I was too fucked up to drive home. Thank God!
I had not initially planned on eating 10grams of the 'shrooms. I ate 4 or so grams at the beginning of the day-long show. After a while I was pleasantly tripping. In the midst of my longing to feel better, I began to 'nibble' at the large bag of shrooms. Later I would realize I had reached the approximate 10gram level. I was not worried.
Things began to turn sour...first, I became extremely self-conscious. I felt that people around me were noticing my behaviour (though I was doing nothing unusual). The main (trippy-jam) band was now playing and there were likely many hundreds of people tripping. Then, I began to 'hear the chorus' of voices (clearly in my head) discussing me. This is akin to the critical voices reported by many people diagnosed with schizophrenia. I did not/do not have that illness and knew it was an effect of the mushrooms. Yet, it was very unpleasant. I assumed it was the mushroom 'speaking' a la Mazatecs/Terence McKenna etc., but I did not enjoy the 'message'! Basically it/they knew all about me--they (because the voices were distinct/plural) knew my every weakness, every achilles heel and straightforwardly gored me with criticism after criticism, attack after attack. They clearly despised me and hated me! They told me I was a phony, a 'poser', someone who thought they were 'cool' but wasn't. I began to feel panic and to generalize it to people around me--they now had scared and angry looks in their eyes. Some of them were obviously drunk and starting to get mean/belligerant, as drunks often do.
At that point the mushroom accelerated me--what I mean is, in an outdoor theater of 18000 packed partiers previously jamming to their favorite band, suddenly I (I still was I) was the only person moving. Everyone else had slowed to a very gradual slow-motion weave or had stopped moving-frozen in time. It was the freakiest thing I had ever seen. Still, I could not enjoy this utterly bizarre event. I knew it was impossible, yet it was patently 'real' and continued with no break. I looked down at the band. They seemed like they were a mile down the hill (my seats were bad, but not that bad). They would play one note--a lone sound from a guitar or keyboard and then stand there. After what seemed like ten minutes later, another lone note would emanate. They stood motionless and let their arms and heads hang down toward the ground like the robot on 'Lost in Space' when someone 'unplugged him'. I could not fucking believe this! Meanwhile, as there was no music to focus on (just a disconnected note seemingly every few minutes) all I could hear were the attacking 'voices'. It was horrible!
I began to wonder if the people around me could even see me. Was I actually accelerated in time, as it most completely appeared? It was like that episode of Star Trek when Kirk got accelerated by some weird aliens and the rest of the crew stood there for hours as he walked right by them! This sounds amusing and could make for perhaps interesting adventures, but it wasn't! I began to think if this was possible (and actually occurring), what the fuck might happen next?! I stood up and realized 'I've got to get out of here!'
The mocking sarcastic nasties kept after me--laughing and commenting on my flight. They would not let up on me! I had heard a 'voice' in past trips, but not a rogues gallery of assholes intent upon my crucifiction like this. I got to the parking lot and of course, since the show was not over, there were thousands of cars. I began to look where I thought my car was. I got more and more confused and anxious. Then I remembered 'I can't drive when I am the only one moving!' Other cars might be stopped in the freeway like obstacles. I was again aware that I had taken mushrooms and was very, very tripadelic. Then I remembered the taxi fare--I ran to a main road, flagged down a taxi and went home. I was so grateful to be back in my apartment (which I hated and associated with all my losses).
I was still tripping severely. I took 3mg of lorazepam and finally started to come down. I pieced together this history, gauging from the amount of mushrooms left how much I had eaten. I felt like a dumbfuck and the mushroom showed me that I clearly was one. It was a harsh and painful lesson in humility. It taught me that it was a very powerful force, not to be screwed with or forsaken. After this experience I did not take mushrooms for several months. Since then, when I have, I have planned to be in a good and safe mindframe (set)--never to take them when feeling sad, depressed or 'not right' in any way. I have come to believe that there is little room for 'recreation use' at all for me. It is instructive/soul-cleansing/spiritual, not 'recreational' and not-necessarily 'fun.' Mushrooms are a serious conscious endeavor and they deserve and will demand respect. In general, a sacred mindframe combined with meditation, in a safe/attractive place, not in public, predicts a good/beneficial trip. Please heed this advice from one who 'had to learn the hard way' when taking any entheogenic trip of your chosing.
Peace and love
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