Amanitas - A. muscaria
Citation: Zanzibar. "Loopy Mind-Hell: An Experience with Amanitas - A. muscaria (exp113948)". Erowid.org. May 1, 2020. erowid.org/exp/113948
I have tried A. Muscaria once before (6 grams, very mild feeling, prepared the same way as below) but this exceeded anything I could have expected or prepared for. I have also had experience with magic mushrooms (Psilocybe subaeruginosa), MDMA and Cannabis. Prior to trying a new drug I am careful to have some idea of what I'm getting into. Before taking A.M. I read trip reports, so I believed I was somewhat ready for the experience. I will first give a rundown of how I prepped the mushroom. Skip to "THE TRIP" if you are one of those people.
I picked 3 beautiful A. Muscarias from a patch of local pine forest. I was very excited to find them as it was not currently the typical season for them where I live but we had had the right temperature and amount of rain for a long enough period for a few of them to start popping up.
I took the mushroom treasures home and chucked them in my dehydrator overnight (this begins the process of changing Ibotenic Acid into Muscimol). Upon checking them in the morning, they were cracker dry and ready for the next stage. A lot of sites that I read advised either eating the dried mushrooms as is, or making a tea out of them (or making a tea out of fresh mushrooms). I decided that I wanted to change as much of the potentially hostile acid into Muscimol as possible, so opted for a more intensive process:
1) I dehydrated the fresh mushrooms until cracker dry, then ground to a very fine powder - a coffee/spice grinder worked perfectly for this.
2) I made a tea out of the mushroom powder. To do this I used filtered water (I'm sure normal water would be fine, however my partner has a fancy water filter so I utilized it lol) and boiled it. Then I measured out 3/4c of the boiling water and added enough cold filtered water to bring the temperature down to 180 degrees Fahrenheit again. According to my research this method should both help with the transference of the acid to Muscimol without destroying any of it, and also bring the Muscimol out of the mushroom pieces and into the water. I used the above portion of water with 10g of dried mushroom powder.
3) I let this mushroom tea soak for 40 minutes while stirring it every 5 minutes or so. I didn't keep it up to temperature, so it slowly cooled down during this time. After 40 minutes was up, I poured the tea into a paper coffee filter and let the clear gold liquid drain out. Note: I have experimented with eating the leftover mush and felt zero effects.
4) I tipped the mushroom liquid into a glass dish and put it in the oven at 170 degrees Fahrenheit. I didn't go higher as I was concerned about the oven's accuracy, and also thought that it was likely to be mainly Muscimol left in the liquid now anyway - this process is as much about reducing the liquid as changing its properties. I cooked this for several hours, checking frequently, until the liquid was very condensed but not drying out.
5) I removed the condensed liquid from the oven and transferred it to a dehydrator tray. Mine has a solid plastic insert that you can use for making fruit roll-ups and this was perfect for the occasion. I dehydrated my concoction until it was sticky and mostly dry (this took 1-2 hours from memory). I have tried to do this entire process in the oven but it doesn't work as well as a dehydrator as it cooks to the bottom of the pan and is very hard to get out. However it might be a different story if I was to cook it on parchment paper or something non-stick.
6) I combined the sticky extract with cornflour until I was left with a less sticky, roll-able paste/dough. Then I fit little sausages of this mixture into empty capsules that I brought for the occasion - I hate the taste of this mushroom and the first time I ate it straight, the taste made me throw up. All up, 10g of dried mushroom powder made 13 capsules. Meaning one capsule contained approx. 0.76g of dried mushroom extract.
Both times I prepared the mushroom this way I felt no nausea or bodily sickness.
On Christmas Eve, my partner was away for the night. He does not have an issue with me doing "experiments" such as these, but has not had much experience with tripping so I was concerned he might freak out upon seeing me trip and call an ambulance. This was a pretty big concern of mine and I thought that a drug would likely intensify it, so I waited until he was away to try it out. In hindsight this was a very good move as I think I would likely have ended up in a hospital, not because I needed to be there, but because he thought I did. I was very confident in my mushroom preparation and dosage (and had tried it before) so having an adverse reaction or dying was not something I was worried about in the slightest.
My one prior experience with this mushroom was with 6 grams, prepared the same way. I tripped very lightly on this amount. This set up my expectations for dosage for the second trip, and I decided to start with 7 capsules (5.32g dried).
T +1.00 (9pm) After an hour of ingesting this, I was already feeling the effects and knew that it would take ~3-4 hours before they started plateauing. Because I wanted to go a lot higher than the first time, I opted to take another 3 capsules, bringing the total up to 10 caps (7.6g dried). After I'd taken them, as I got increasingly higher from the initial dose, I had a slight feeling of dread in my stomach (I might have overdone it, oh shit, I'm gonna trip hard). This persisted for a good 40 minutes and I fought myself from going to throw up the extra capsules, telling myself that I'd regret it if I didn't go all the way.
I started to get very strange thoughts/images persisting in my head, one of which I remember as a person rubbing a piece of rope against a tree branch. Very strange, although not ominous, it simply irritated me that these thoughts wouldn't go away when I tried to think about other things. Eventually, I got my headphones and retreated to my bed with trance music playing. Shortly after this, the sedation effects of the mushroom kicked in and I fell asleep with my music still going.
T +3.00 (11pm) A particular part in my music woke me up with a start and I realized I was rather high. For some reason, I thought I was coming down by this point, but this was only the beginning. I looked at my phone and saw there was a message from my partner:
"When I die in other worlds, I am reborn as a fly in this one. That's why they keep landing on you and coming back even when shooed away. Thought you should know."
This meant so much to me in my trippy state and I replied telling him that I was on A. muscaria and said the following - it is a little weirdly phrased as my brain was working in strange ways and I was also struggling to type (I have corrected the many spelling errors):
"It was really weird, I fell into this loop of thinking weird shit all the time, over and over, so I went and got my music so I wouldn't get looping. The music started making me loop to it. Just now I woke up, it feels like I JUST woke up. I like could choose the world that I would be in and as all these possible worlds that could be flew past, I fell into this one and wholly crap it was the best thing that every happened. It's kind of hard to type and I'm still high but I have to type it. It seems so amazing that we are in the same loop as each other. It's an amazing coincidence.
I don't think I'll every do this mushroom again, it's very fuckhead-y, my brain just tried to convince me that "however" started with a "b" and it's telling me that I wrote this sentence wrong even though I didn't and it feels like I saved myself from looping forever. I have never been so thankful for one particular beat in a song ever ever.
It was very rhythmic and constant and my mind was copying it over and over and I couldn't stop it from reprinting and reprinting. And suddenly I wasn't and it felt like I died instead the opposite happened and I'm alive, fuck that was really relieving. I forgot I was a loop at all until I wasn't, feels like I just saved myself from eternal looping."
After typing all that, my head was spinning wildly and I said I needed to stop looking at my phone as it was making me feel very dizzy. We said goodbye and I promptly feel asleep again. The next time I awoke, I was trapped in a loopy mind-hell.
T approx +5.00 (1am)
I awoke with a start again and sat up, although it is hard to call the state I was in awake. I was utterly confused, I didn't remember being alive, or who I was, let alone taking the mushrooms. I wasn't even a person in my head, or even an idea of a person. I couldn't comprehend any of my surroundings as real, nor did I even try - my mind was working in such an strange way that I couldn't even tell that I was confused.
My brain was no longer filtering out unnecessary information or thoughts and everything was storming my mind all at once. All the thoughts I'd ever thought, ever almost thought, had thought but not realized. It seemed that I was thinking an entire universe of thoughts every millisecond. There was so much information flooding my head that it was impossible to pick out any one thing, or even to think at all. To call it information overload does not even BEGIN to describe it - I had no idea that a human brain was even capable of such things, and can now see why we have filters in place! My brain was moving so unbelievably quickly that real world time felt like it was in a slow mo video. Any movement I did looked like it was moving in incredibly slow motion.
I fell back down onto the bed from my sitting position and here is what I experienced as best as I can describe it in words:
Everything I had every said in my life up to this point was playing over and over in my mind, gathering speed with every cycle, until it was being thought at such speed that the words lost their individual meanings and began to sound like gibberish (I may have been speaking out loud at this point, but am not certain). Still they kept getting faster and faster until all of the words that had ever left my mouth began to form a new phrase until it was a legible English language sentence (that I can't remember - something mundane). I was baffled that I could have lived in ignorance for so long without realizing that all I had said was not said because I wanted to say it, but because I had to, in order to form this exact sentence.
But still this sentence picked up speed until it too was gibberish, but still it went faster. Eventually, it became a word, and I thought to myself "so this is the meaning of everything, this meaningless little word" (I can't remember what this was either, it was just a random word). Nothing I said meant anything other than to add up to this word that also meant nothing. I felt complete and utter horror at the realization of this fact. This was so much worse than life being meaningless. Life had a meaning and that meaning meant nothing. I had no control over anything I said, I just did everything like a puppet, all adding up to this one pointless word. THAT was the purpose of life, to make up this word. At least if life has no meaning you are free. I was enslaved to live out my role in creation. I felt crippling hopelessness to a degree I've never felt before.
Then another realization struck me, that I had been here before. That I had been here many times and that I had forgotten. That soon I would forget again and the cycle would repeat. That I was doomed to repeat this for the rest of eternity. Just as I discovered this, I felt the thought slipping away from me.
"The" word was no longer a word anymore, but the phrase before it became the word. The only difference was that the phrase was repeating backwards. The individual words were said correctly but the sentence was backwards (eg. "that cat is fat" would be "fat is cat that"). I told myself that it wasn't possible to say all the things I'd ever said backwards, but it happened regardless. I can't remember for sure but at this point I think I was talking sentences out loud backwards.
"The" phrase started to break down into the words I had said throughout my life, but backwards as before. By this point I had entered ignorance again and in a sense, I was living my life prior to my "revelation" backwards, but I couldn't tell it was backwards. Sentences made sense even though they were backwards and they had different meanings. It felt normal, in a entirely un-normal way. The only unusual thing was this horrible sense of dread that hung over me that I couldn't place to anything. Eventually, I died, although I don't remember this as a particular event, but rather just the entire cycle repeating again. The whole "come up" began of me living my life but faster and faster until my words became the phrase again, then the word, then the horror of knowing, then the events backwards and me forgetting. This cycle itself got faster and faster until I was living the entire thing every second (or so it felt, I had no time perception).
Somehow, this whole thing got so fast that it began to take on a new meaning as it speed up, and all the smaller cycles began to add up to the meaning of the colour red. THIS was the true essence of the colour. This was absolutely terrifying and I was so scared that there was so much meaning behind one colour, one word. I became extremely fearful of what I was going to learn next. The cycle repeated and I forgot the meaning of red, I forgot "the" word, I forgot "the" phrase, I died, everything speed up again, etc. It was impossible to complete a loop without it itself getting faster and faster and then realizing it was part of another loop, after which the new loop would be added to the end of the old one and so on and so forth. Loops upon loops upon loops for eternity. An infinite cycle of loops.
Another odd thing that happened was I found out that you could be any word you wanted to be. For example, I thought of the word liquid and suddenly I was liquid. I couldn't sit or stand and I melted off my bed. I'm not sure if this actually happened or not as I don't remember actually falling off, or the act of getting back on the bed, just this feeling that I WAS liquid. I didn't have enough of a conscious thought process to play around with this however, and it had a bit of a sinister feel to it.
At some point I started coming down a little, and the loops took a little longer to complete and I began to have brief moments of 'almost' sanity, where I began to realize who I was and that I was tripping. I still couldn't stop the looping but it was less terrifying once I realized the nature of what was happening. After struggling with my phone for what I think must have been a good 1/2 hour, I managed to call a friend (this was at 2am lol) who thankfully answered and gave me the advice of drinking water (I'd forgotten water was even a thing), watching some TV and snuggling my dog. Hearing his voice and realizing that other people existed was the most relieving feeling I have ever felt to date. I turned on my computer with great difficulty and googled "live TV" and clicked the first result. My brain told me all Netflix shows were fake and the people didn't exist at all (as actors even). For some reason live TV was different. I then fell asleep again.
T +8.00 (4am) Still looping but less so. Turned off the TV (my dog had deserted me by this point) and stumbled back to bed. Made my dog come with me. He was very confused as he is not normally allowed on the bed. Crashed and tried not to think about the loops. Fell asleep.
T +10.00 (6am) Woke up and realized who I was properly for the first time in hours. Stumbled to the toilet and puked. I was still looping but if I tried not to think about it I was able to push it to the back of my mind.
T +12.00 (8am) Woke up again and felt like I'd come back from the dead. The loops had receded for the most part (they lingered for the rest of that day and six days later I can still sort of feel them now if I concentrate).
I read other reports prior to ingestion that described similar things as I experienced with the looping phenomenon but I had no idea of just how deep it could go. I thought, "oh I'll be fine, I can handle looping." But it is VERY different in experience. Looking back now it feels like I crossed the line into psychosis and if anyone was in that state for even a few days I wouldn't doubt that their mind could become permanently lost.
Please be careful, these were unbelievably strong and can vary wildly in strength.
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