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The Direction That Can't Be Pointed To
Salvia divinorum (20x extract)
by TrapperMonk
Citation:   TrapperMonk. "The Direction That Can't Be Pointed To: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (20x extract) (exp85530)". Erowid.org. Jan 27, 2017. erowid.org/exp/85530

 
DOSE:
  smoked Salvia divinorum (extract)

BODY WEIGHT: 130 lb


Previous (Chronological order)
Alcohol, caffeine, tobacco, marijuana, 'mescaline' microdot, PCP, LSD, various mushrooms, chocolate, hot peppers/wasabi, GHB, MDMA, 2C2B, ketamine.

Currently
No pharmaceuticals. 1-2 bowls of marijuana just less than daily (most days).
1-2 beers just less than daily (most days).
B multi-vitamin, most days.

Salvia History
I've smoke Salvia four times total, on three separate occasions.

The first two times (occasion 1) were with a 10x (or possibly a 5x). Nighttime in my house, rural setting. Reclined in a beanbag chair, no music. A sitter.

I inhaled one bowl. I felt a prickling on the skin of my face. I attributed this to a rush of blood, similar perhaps to a Niacin flush. A pleasant sensation. Began to feel a slight counter-clockwise twisting sensation. A vague association with childhood arose. I articulated this to my sitter as 'like the colors of a sugary kid's cereal.' I linked this association to an impression of 'mescaline' microdots I had in the years 1985-87. Too vague to articulate, but something to do with colors. (colors as I experienced them with the microdots? The colors of the microdots themselves? I'm unsure, but there was an association with microdots, color, and the Salvia effect
there was an association with microdots, color, and the Salvia effect
.)

I had the feeling that my personality was beginning to unweave, as though the loosest threads were peeling themselves away. 'Ohh, we're really going somewhere interesting,' I thought. Then the experience faded back to baseline consciousness. My eyes were mostly open. I noticed no visual effect when I closed them.

My sitter and I changed roles. Same dosage. Her experience was more vivid and visionary than mine, but she also reported more of a sense of things (for example, the feeling of watching a horse gallop down a hallway, as opposed to actually seeing it.)

We changed roles again. Same dosage. Same experience as my first run. Thought, 'Here we go,' aaaaand... nothing. Or, almost nothing. A nice afterglow, a calmness that lasted the whole next day.

Shulgin scale +. Salvia scale level 2.

Six months later, give or take.
Late afternoon in my house, sitter present. Music on stereo was Thompson's Brainwave Suite: Insight and Intuition (entrainment music for Theta waves). I measured out about 1/16 of teaspoon of 20x, smoked it, and reclined in my beanbag chair. The effect was stronger than the first session. I heard child-like chanting/singing voices telling me they were taking me to a school of some kind. The feeling was open and friendly. When I closed my eyes I saw a three-by-three grid, each square filled with a counter-clockwise, non-recursive spiral. I opened my eyes and when I closed them again the grid was six-by-six with the same spiral in each square. The pleasant and positive after effect was stronger and lasted for several days.

Shulgin scale ++. Salvia scale level 3.

The Direction That Can't Be Pointed To.
One week after the previous session. I told my sitter I thought I'd smoke without her. She advised my to reconsider and I did. The session started out much like the last one: late afternoon in my house, sitter present, the music was another of Thompson's Brainwave Suite (Gamma, this time). Meditating to this music in the past I've experienced extreme sadness. I wanted to use the Ultra-Gamma CD, but it wouldn't play in my stereo and I wanted to try different music (these are brain wave entrainment CDs. I don't know if they do what they're advertised to do, but I seem to get something positive out of most of them).

There were other differences. I decided to smoke on a whim (previously I had designated a day several days beforehand). I sat on the couch rather than in my beanbag. I wore headphones. And I measured out and smoked almost 1/8 teaspoon of 20x. I held my breath longer too.

The onset was rapid, beginning even as I handed the water pipe and lighter to my sitter. The voices were more like mischievous elves. They told me straight out, 'You're coming with us.' And you're not coming back wasn't said aloud, but it was implicit. I was being dragged into a different dimension, forever. I was going away from everyone I loved, forever.

Fear quickly accelerated into panic. I wasn't about to be hijacked into some alien dimension without... trying... something. I decided to run away ('cause how do you fight other-dimensional elves?) and stood up from the couch. I had no sense that I was wearing headphones, so when my sitter questioned me, I couldn't hear her too well. I mumbled something about it being ok, I just needed to... My sitter pushed me down onto the couch (THANK YOU SITTER!). This was the person who insisted I keep using a sitter. (So, again: always use a sober sitter. ALWAYS.).

I tried to lay down. Due to the short cord, I was reminded that I had headphones on. Taking them off lessened the psychedelic experience slightly, but I was still in terror. However, I was able to focus, breathe, and give more attention to other aspects of the experience. The closest I can come to describing the visual feast is to say that everything flattened out a bit. The furniture, walls, etc, seemed like flat stage props and they began to slide apart from each other. I had a vague association with The Flintstones cartoon. This did not help the terror.
I had a vague association with The Flintstones cartoon. This did not help the terror.


Within twenty minutes, the experience faded. It took a day to work through the stress. And then it became amazing. Not only was there an amazing sense of well being, much stronger than the other times, but there was insight after insight into myself that continues to now, two weeks later. There is also a clear message, along the lines of: Here it is. A different dimension. A different ally. If you want to work here, if you want to navigate through this place, you need to get on top of your game and on top of yourself. When you're ready, come back. Learn to communicate. Learn to heal.

Shulgin scale +++ Salvia scale level 4

Thoughts and conclusions
There were too many variables in the last session to draw definitive conclusions. The dosage leap was obviously too large. The music choice was poor, given the associations through experience with that music. Headphones greatly intensified the music, drowning out the rest of the available audible environment (lessening connection with baseline reality). The cord also caused some confusion and physical entanglement (strong physical entanglement with baseline reality that you have to pay attention to may help anchor one - it's not necessarily a negative)(Also, the physical comedy and absurdity of realizing 'Oh, right, wearing headphones', may also help to anchor).

I want to work with Salvia. So taking my health seriously is part of that. 'When you're ready, come back.' How do you know? You know. Just like you know and recognize that voice that tries to weasel out of knowing what to do and doing it. The taking the health seriously bit? That's part of an overall intention to work with Salvia. Salvia has traditionally been used to heal. Not to say that that's the only relationship available. For me, the healing is just the place to start. And we'll take it from there, see if there are other places to go.

So, the next time. Intention. The day is decided in advance. And maybe it still won't be the right day. I'll listen to that. I know I will be taken somewhere. Perhaps quite quickly. I'll remind myself, If you don't want to be taken elsewhere, don't do Salvia.

According to the available literature and experience reports the fear and panic seem common. Looking at the Psychedelic Information Theory, I wonder if this could be due in part to the interrupt frequency of Salvia.

I'll use the original theta wave entrainment music, on the stereo, not headphones. Recline in the beanbag (it's harder to get out of and has a nurturing association). 1/16 of teaspoon of 20x, smoked, same as previous-to-last. And we'll see how that goes. I'll also try to communicate directly with the experience, asking for healing, asking to learn. And I'll try singing various tones, see what, if anything, that does.

Then, if it seems appropriate, I'll increasing the dose. I'll compare this experience to both the previous 1/16 tsp dose and the 1/8 tsp dose and increase accordingly.

Perhaps I'll get around to using headphones or different music. Perhaps not. I will definitely have a sober sitter, every time.

The adventure continues. And is just beginning. Again.

Exp Year: 2010ExpID: 85530
Gender: Male 
Age at time of experience: 40 
Published: Jan 27, 2017Views: 3,121
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Salvia divinorum (44) : General (1), Guides / Sitters (39), Personal Preparation (45), Retrospective / Summary (11), Small Group (2-9) (17)

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