I Was Given the Opportunity to Try Kykeon
Unknown Plant Parts Mixed with Grains of Barley
Citation:   Elusinian Initiate. "I Was Given the Opportunity to Try Kykeon: An Experience with Unknown Plant Parts Mixed with Grains of Barley (exp96513)". Erowid.org. Nov 30, 2022. erowid.org/exp/96513

 
DOSE:
1250 mg oral Various (extract)
BODY WEIGHT: 152 lb
Unveiling Kykeon

While visiting cousins in Greece a few weeks ago, I was given the opportunity to try kykeon, the psychedelic drink of the Eleusinian Mysteries. My cousins' friend knew a man whom we shall call Apothokos that has been making traditional kykeon for decades, and obtained for us (my two cousins, their friend, and myself) a 5g bag of dried plant parts mixed with grains of barley. As per his directions we steeped this in lightly boiling water and goat's milk with a splash of table wine for about 20 minutes, and added 2 tsp of vegetable glycerin (I assume all this was to help extract the alkaloids). This begins a bit after 9:00pm after a huge dinner with extended family. We're outside making a fire, overlooking the Aegean sea.

T+0:00 - Tastes pretty awful, sort of like bitter curdled milk. Goat's milk and wine really don't mix. I don't know if it was supposed to taste like that, or we messed up, but I wanted it to be as authentic and close to what the experience would have been like as possible.

T+0:30 - Felt a bit nauseous and a little dizzy. Little things were bothering me like when I had to go get more wood for the fire. I wanted to sit down and not have to do anything.

T+1:00 - In retrospect, it was probably beginning to hit me, but I wasn't aware of it at the time. I wasn't really following the conversations as my cousins and friend were talking around me, but sort of happy just to sit there overlooking the sea in what felt like a comfortable environment and content that they seemed to be enjoying themselves.

T+2:00 - I quickly started noticing that I was increasingly content and my thoughts started spiraling around that idea, and how beautiful the view from our little island was. I became fascinated with the spiral patterns in the wood grain of my cousin's chair in front of me, which seemed to either have grown and magnified in my mind/vision or just have become the focus of my world. It continued in this manner for an unknown amount of time. Lots of tangential thoughts leading back into each other that seemed to follow the pattern of the wooden spiral. Other than a slight clenching in my right leg, I noticed an absence of the muscle tension that is usually present in most psychedelics.

T+3:00-T+5:30 or so - I began to get thirsty and fetched a glass of water from inside (fortunately the rest of the family had gone to bed by now), which brought me out of my introspection, back to earth, and turned into a fun adventure with a peaceful overtone. I managed to wander back outside slightly clumsily, only stumbling once, on a pot, on the way out the door, and didn't break it. I felt if not energized, then refreshed and interested in my surroundings.

My thoughts swirled like the lapping waves of the sea below, and I could see stories and life in each line on each wave. I felt the fish swimming below and was euphoric as I realized that they each had individual lives. I realized, most profoundly, that these were the waves of the same sea that had been here for thousands of years, that had had fleets of Greek war ships cutting across them and burning and warring across them. Classical marble sculptures and architecture seemed reflected in their form and curves. The lapping motion of the waves started to come up the rocks below, rising up the cliff towards me, reaching slowly, inexorably, yet not maliciously. I then remembered that my cousins and friend were up here with me, but then the rocks weren't moving anymore and the motion was resting back in the sea below, and the slight butterflies in my stomach quieted.

Remembering my friends made me want to go back to them and see how they were doing. They seemed engrossed in conversation and totally unaware of the world around. They later told me they were in a sort of mind meld, thinking about the same object that they could all see and move in some game, and were marveling that they could all see and agree on what each other were doing to the object. I listened to this a bit lethargically, feeling content that they were content.

My mind calm and relaxed, I began thinking about the quintessential ancient Greek mind, full of math, geometry, logic, and spartan fury. I felt like I saw a sort of communal Arete, the excellence and virtue of mind and 'psyche' that reminded me of the ancestor tree in Avatar. I understand, now, the tales of gods and titans and all the curses and splendor of greek mythology. Looking at this sea and these islands (at least on this drug), how could one not.

T+6:00 - The last hour was a gradual fading of the sensations in my body and mind, and I felt once again mortal, although I had glimpsed some magical other world and some deeper understanding of my transient place in it. I wondered if I did a higher dose, how much further I could get, if I could break through and make some sort of contact with a god in my mind, and what that would mean. Would I be talking to myself? I joined my cousins for some light conversation, but despite a warm comfy feeling, they said they were tired after some exhaustive mental effort in their game. Everyone slowly, sleepily, slipped off to bed saying goodnight. I looked at the rocks and the sea a long time before grabbing another glass of water (much more soberly this time), and a small snack of falafel and hummus left over from dinner, and myself going to bed. My room was dark, and I had a weird dream about a cartoony looking frog that made no sense and was unrelated.

Next morning, I felt a little exhausted, possibly because I only got about 6 hours of sleep, but not bad, no hangover. I mollified the strange feeling of sobriety by talking with my cousins about their experience. Sleepy day, but I wouldn't say I experienced a comedown.

Exp Year: 2012ExpID: 96513
Gender: Male 
Age at time of experience: 25
Published: Nov 30, 2022Views: 541
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Unknown (120), Various (136), Alcohol - Beer/Wine (199) : Small Group (2-9) (17), What Was in That? (26)

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