H.B. Woodrose & Syrian Rue
Citation: Dan. "Frightening but Informative: An Experience with H.B. Woodrose & Syrian Rue (exp38714)". Erowid.org. Dec 28, 2004. erowid.org/exp/38714
I have smoked grass and hash many times (in fact, regularly at times), and after trying Salvia Divinorum I decided that legal drugs might be worth investigating. After some internet research I thought I was ready, although I ignored the reports of people experiencing nausea; they’re just being fussy. Well, I learned the hard way that some of the things you read really ARE true. The place I bought the HBW seeds from also informed me that Peganum Harmala would boost the effect so I decided to chew on 5 seeds and drink a tea made from aprox 5 grams of Peganum Harmala. The whole day I had fasted (big mistake) and I downed 2 “car-sickness” pills just in case—I was ready.
First of all, the tea was the most foul-tasting liquid I have ever tasted. As per recommendation I had used lemon juice to minimize the bitterness, but instead now it was extremely sour—I simply could not finish it all, so I left about ¼ of the tea. While chewing on the seeds, which were not bad tasting at all, I decided to sit down to read until it all took effect.
After about one hour I started to feel a little light-headed but also a little, that’s right: nauseous. Hoping it would not get any worse than that, I started spinning CDs and I was enjoying myself very much. It was like a milder sort of high, and different from anything I had experienced, but I was surprised to find that like marijuana it was quite a potent aphrodisiac, but unfortunately it didn’t allow for, ehem, closure.
Another hour into the trip and it was still gaining momentum, and by now I was sick to my stomach. I tried to calm down by listening to more music, but for the first time in my life I was too out there to enjoy it. I’m a big fan of jazzrock and 70’s progressive rock, and always get a kick out of listening to that kind of music under the influence, but now it was just too intense—it scared the crap out of me. In addition to that, now I had to throw up. Nothing I enjoy doing but I figured it would be no big deal. Only problem was that my stomach was completely empty, which is why I would recommend that you eat at least something before you try this, if only to make it physically possible to empty your stomach if needed. So, beginning to panic I started cooking (I had no snacks around), and looking back that could have ended badly as I kept forgetting what I was doing, if the stove was on, how long things had been cooking. To make matters worse, I could not stand still. I was running around my apartment like a maniac, sweating like crazy, stopping by the bathroom every other minute to push my fingers down my throat, bacause by now I really wanted the trip to mellow out.
The food was uneatable and I was sitting in the shower thinking that I might not make it through. Severe anxiety attacks coupled with physical pain as I was rocking back and forth with sweat pouring down my face. “What am I going to do with my life? What does my family think of me? Why am I even living?”. These kinds of questions rained down on me, but I couldn’t find any answers to any of them. Then the really scary thing started. My thought gravitated toward the kitchen knife. I figured “In this condition it would be so easy to stab yourself in the heart without hesitating”. I was both compelled by this thought and scared to death by it, because it felt like in the end it wasn’t up to me, but my mind, which was separate from me.
This took a while and about five hours after ingestion I was still sitting on the floor of the shower, but thankfully I felt like I wasn’t just a slave to random thoughts anymore. Then the Beatles lyric “Turn off your mind, relax and float downstream” (or something like that) came to mind. From what I understand it is based on Timothy Leary’s intro to the Tibetan Book of the Dead, so I decided to give it a go. I stopped fighting against what my body felt, and I accepted that I had a bunch of problems in my life. Tadaa! Within a minute all the anxieties just went away, and even though I was feeling a bit queasy that wasn’t a real problem. I got up and returned to the living room, and from the table the cover of the Grateful Dead’s American Beauty shone like a beacon in the dark. I put it on and slumped down in my couch. Things were feeling pretty OK all of a sudden; the music was very earthy and positive, which are not adjectives I normally identify with, but now I wanted nothing more than to be in sync with that feeling. It was getting light outside but I kept playing records and I had reached a calm state of mind that was heavenly.
The next day I woke up with a big grin om my face, and when I reflected on what had happened I was glad I went through it, though next time I would do it a little differently. Said and done, never again Peganum Harmala, and at least a water extraction of the seeds (10 seeds or more). I have done it about four times since, and even though the highs have not been as intense, there also hasn’t been any anxiety attacks. There is still some nausea but not so much as to ruin the trip. Probably the most important thing is to not experiment with psychedelics when you are depressed or even slightly worried about something. In that respect HBW seeds are much more potent than pot, and requires more responsibility and self-discipline. If you are comfortable doing drugs in the company of others that would probably be a good idea in this case.
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