Citation: SalviaVirgin. "Yes It's Legal, but It's Not to Be Taken Lightly: An Experience with Salvia divinorum - extract 10x (exp68449)". Erowid.org. Aug 5, 2015. erowid.org/exp/68449
I've done most psychedelics - shrooms, LSD, MDMA - and can't say I was expecting much from Salvia. It is legal after all.
I live in New Zealand, where the legal sale of BZP 'party pills' keep the local Head shops in a roaring trade. However, the government has announced that it will ban the sale of BZP pills and I was keen to stock up while I was still able to buy them (they had banned the sale of Nitrous Oxide a few years earlier and I have always cursed myself for not stocking up at the time). So it was at a Head shop that I spied some Salvia for sale. I had heard of it and, quite frankly, didn't believe the really intense 'out there' trip experiences I had read about. I asked the clerk if he had tried it and he said he had and would recommend it. He hastened to add that many people don’t like its effects and that it's certainly not something to try in a pub/club or party situation.
They had various strengths available and I bought some 10x strength, the clerk assuring me that it was 'plenty for a first time'. I went home and loaded up a small standard weed-pipe with a healthy pinch of the little black, leafy stuff. I went into the next room, leaving my girlfriend in the lounge, pulled the curtains and torched the pipe, sucking the smoke in deep. The leaf doesn't smoulder like pot or tobacco, so I really had to hold the light on it and draw in. The smoke is particularly harsh so I held it in as long as I could before I started coughing (I've since read reports that recommend using a bong which sounds like a good idea).
I was expecting a rush of some kind, but it didn't happen that way. In fact the effects just seemed to seamlessly creep in, merging with everyday reality, so it didn't seem that unusual to me when everything in the room started to, well, 'curl' in on itself. Other reports seem to mention some kind of pressure or feeling of 'tugging' on the body into the ground. The sensation to me felt more like lots of little fingertips pinching and twisting my face and pulling it inwards toward the intense focus inside my head, which was the really bad acrid smoke taste in my mouth.
This 'curling' intensified and out of these curls came little faces, perceived rather than 'seen', that were talking in unison with one voice. The whole effect was kind of sinister rather than acid-like wonder. I can't remember the words they were saying but it was basically chiding me for my underestimation of how powerful this leaf was. The curling reached a crescendo and dissolved into blackness. I had a feeling of travelling and moving through space while perceiving the same curly, spiky, teardrop patterns still berating me. I had been relatively calm up until this point, but I now had a mild panic that I had to 'get back'.
My body physically translated this mental impetus, and I got up off the bed, opened the door and walked into the lounge. The previous room was dark, and walking into the glowing lounge was instantly reassuring. Visually everything was still curly, spiky and swirling - but it all had an instant hominess. My girlfriend was on the couch, and although I didn't instantly recognise her, I identified her as a comforting presence and sat down beside her. The voice was still insistently ranting at me and I gradually perceived this to be the sound of the television - although the stuff it was saying sounded too personal and instantly relevant to possibly be a TV show. Gradually the room returned to its recognisable form and the TV show started to sound more like a normal TV show.. it was about computers ;).
I have tried Salvia twice since, same dose, with fairly identical effects. After this first experience, I had difficulty recalling the trip itself, but on subsequent trips I could instantly recall my earlier experiences and this time the memory stuck around after I came down. I believe the taste of the leaf also helped me recall earlier events.
The experience is fundamentally different to anything I've ever taken. I've read that Salvia is the only substance known to interact with a particular receptor type in the brain (κ-Opioid receptors for all you neuro-philes ;) , so it would seem it is fundamentally chemically different also. In particular, the Salvia reality felt just like everyday reality - there was no background 'buzz' or knowledge to reassure me I was tripping, all this weird shit just casually starts happening and my mind is challenging me to accept it as real. This aspect made it quite unnerving.
I wouldn’t describe Salvia as a 'fun' hallucinogen, in the way acid or mushrooms are fun, but it *is* very interesting and certainly different. I will try it again, but it's not something I would do for kicks.
COPYRIGHTS: All reports are copyright Erowid and you agree not to download or analyze the report data without contacting Erowid Center and receiving permission first.
Experience Reports are the writings and opinions of the individual authors who submit them.
Some of the activities described are dangerous and/or illegal and none are recommended by Erowid Center.