Citation: curiousity. "I Don't Want to Open That Door: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (leaves) (exp49550)". Erowid.org. Sep 30, 2007. erowid.org/exp/49550
Two friends told me about a new legal substance they'd recently tried which was short in duration but intense in effect, and a local headshop where I could get it. I was really interested. I hadn't touched a drug in over two years until New Years Eve, last week, when I decided to pick up some ecstasy once again for an after-hours in NYC. Not knowing any significant details about Salvia and assuming that 'it must be mild if it's legal,' I stopped by the headshop and bought a quarter ounce that night on my 2-hour roadtrip to visit a friend in the next state.
Scene 1: Friday 8PM. Sitting in the passenger seat on a dark highway, I rolled a bone (unaware that this was not the best method) and started puffing, holding each hit for about 10 seconds. I began to feel it by the 5th hit. The first effect was that I felt very 'deep in my head', meaning my awareness was disassociated from the present reality of my surroundings, and somewhat 'gripped' by this feeling in a way that wasn't overwhelming, but very noticable. It came on quickly and took me by surprise with more of a reaction than I expected, and I let out an excited roll of laughter. The way that my eyes registered the darkened passing landscape seemed directly connected to the pulsing beat of the global-trance music I had on.
The next 4 minutes passed very quickly, as I was very 'deep in my head.' My conscious thoughts soon began to overshadow the sensation and once I began to come back up, I was back up quickly. I was sort of disappointed that it wore off so quickly, as I was expecting more of a pot-type body high to follow. I was still in some level of a zone, but I have ADD so this is not a terribly unfamiliar feeling for me. I smoked a cigarette and the effects continued to wear off. About 10 minutes later I decided to finish the 2nd half of the bone. I found myself in a light zone but nothing really happened. It seemed like the 2nd dose was more or less ineffective.
Scene 2: Saturday 4PM. Broad daylight, highway, global-trance. We're returning home and I roll another bone and cut it in half. I smoke one of the halves down, but before I've finished it I feel as if my someone/something is trying to twist my field of vision, along with my face, hands, feet, counter-clockwise, as if all were connected to a large steering wheel and someone tried to force it to the left as I tried to keep it straight. This sensation wasn't overpowering, but it was challenging to keep it all straight. My body weight felt more dense and yet lighter, and visually my depth perception and point of focus was limited, reminiscent of those few times I sampled a bump or two of ketamine back in the day.
Being aware of the passing landscape, much more vivid in the daylight, kept me from going very deep. I was mostly feeling general giddyness from feeling simultaneously conscious of my thoughts and detached from my surroundings. As I mentioned I have ADD, and I'm also very introspective. As with every other drug I've experimented with, I tried salvia out of my innate curiousity of 'all that lay beneath the surface.' So far, in these uncontrolled environments, these two experiences fell under the category of 'fun and interesting.'
Scene 3: Saturday 7PM. Back on the dark highway after an extended dinner break. I smoke the other half. By now I'm more familiar with the effects and the physical/visual aspects aren't such a novelty, so I focus more on letting myself go 'deep.' We're listening to a weekly public radio show that plays a lot of ambient music. I get fixated on this asian sounding wind-instrument that conjures up a vague image of flying low over rolling hills and mountains and feeling connected with the earth and life, past and present. I am feeling an awareness of this rosey image of a realm of spiritual beings that transcend time and space, although I stopped short of a connection to it. I'm a Christian who believes that there is indeed a spiritual realm and that not all of it is positive or friendly despite the fact that 'it' may allege to be. I sensed the reality of this realm, and understood the appeal to access it, but I held back from it and thought to myself (while traversing the rolling hills) 'it's too bad that they aren't as pleasant as they present themselves.' I continued to enjoy the imagery and the music until it eventually faded.
Scene 4: Here's where it got weird. Saturday/Sunday 1AM, alone. By now I've googled Salvia and done a bit of research. I was a bit disturbed to learn that Salvia has been a drug of choice for shaman and 'spiritual' rituals, and I wondered about the significance of my intuitions in the previous experience. But I read about potencies and the quantity/quality I was experimenting with seemed 'safe enough' for my taste. I still hadn't read about how ridiculous this frequency of 3 times in 24 hours was. Not until tonight did I read this. So I sat outside on my back step and smoked another half of a bone, one last experience for the evening.
Now, I live in a multi-family house. Two female roommates rent an upstairs apartment and they have thick southern accents and very distinct patterns of speech. As I took my 2nd hit, I sort of imagined D coming downstairs and 'catching me' and how I'd explain it's not pot and blah blah blah, and then S would hear what was going on and come down and blawh blawh blawh ('blah' with an accent') and I'd respond blah blah blah and they'd heckle me blawh blawh blawh... Y'know blawh blwah... Yeah blawh blawh blawh... blawh blawh gab gab rant rant...
They might as well have been standing RIGHT THERE, so help me. I FELT with emotional intensity the way I'd feel if my two overbearing southern neighbors were busting my balls in tag-team action, including the feeling of the *presence* of two people behind me. All this happened while I was continuing to take hits. The experience traveled to such a deep level and took on a life of its own so vividly that I became unaware that it was not *actually* happening. When I began to snap out of it (approx. 4 minutes), and after I determined that neither D nor S were actually standing there behind me, nor had they been and nor would they be, it took a minute to convince myself of that. I could still feel their lingering presences and I still sensed voices speaking toward me, though now more distantly.
I could determine that I had not heard their voices externally, but they were discernable, distinct, and I had not been willingly imagining them. Hell, I was still feeling the physiological reaction *to* them. They were talking *to* me, or at me toward the end when they turned into a muddled gibberish. At this point, I got a sense of the message becoming: 'We're still here.' I attempted to snap out of it and get a grip. No luck. I was still being heckled. 'That's just me THINK-ING,' I said out loud to convince myself, and them just in case they were listening. I could not get past the sense that there was someone/thing else involved in this situation. I smoked a cigarette and temporarily convinced myself that it was all in my head. I went inside and laid down on my bed and closed my eyes, metaphysically holding up a barrier between myself and anyone/thing else.
That was last night. Between those last two experiences, I felt as though, amidst this strange new landscape, I may have stumbled upon a doorway to the spiritual realm. After some of the things I've read online today I realize this is a distinct possibility, but it was never my intention to find such a doorway, nor do I have any intention whatsoever to open such a doorway. The one thing I can control in this is my free-will choice NOT to willingly enter that realm, and I will retain that choice so long as I do not get so intoxicated or caught-up in an experience that my free-will becomes compromised. I'm as of yet undecided as to whether or not I will try Salvia again. If I do, it will be with preparation and a damn good reason.
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