Citation: SacralChakra. "Lessons From the Sacred Wood: An Experience with Tabernanthe iboga (exp114892)". Erowid.org. Nov 4, 2020. erowid.org/exp/114892
Hoping to help research I'm gonna try to describe my iboga experience as objectively as I can.
* Brief summary: My experience happened three months ago, it was the first and so far only one. I took the sacred wood in a ceremonial setup in an organized retreat. The after effects lasted long (i.e. mental clarity), for several weeks.
* About me: I am 37, male, with a rich experience in altered states of consciousness, not only drug induced. I have a regular practice of meditation, bodywork and breathwork. I have a subconscious developmental trauma, resulting in anxiety, insomnia, some dysthymia and "low vibration", generally.
* Intention: Three weeks before the ceremony, I journaled some questions which I was hoping to be addressed in the ceremony: "How to start living my life fully?" "How to heal my sex life?" "Where is my joy locked?" "What is holding me back from living the life of my dreams?" I was in a need for a deeper breakthrough aided by a sacred plant. I did not feel like recurring to ayahuasca; I felt the sacred wood was calling me.
* Preparation: I did not read experiences about iboga, I just did a very basic research on the safety. I trusted the call. I did not do any special fasting, except one: 3 weeks ahead I quit coffee after 15 years of daily use and addiction. I avoided alcohol and any substance for a few weeks.
* Setting: The retreat was run by a professional team, the leader was initiated in the Bwiti. There was a nice balance between traditional cult and modern western approach (psychology, etc). The organizer requested me to undergo heart and blood checks to avoid risk. We had a video call to discuss my intentions, contraindications and safety. The retreat happened in a quiet house in the nature and took four days in total. The medicine was a pure iboga wood, without the synthetic ibogaine added. There were 11 participants and five facilitators. The music during the ceremony was the high-pace bwiti music.
* First dose effects: The first dose was 1 spoon of wood in the evening. I felt a pleasant feeling of warmth in the body. With eyes closed I saw subtle flashes of colors. I did not have a difficulty to walk. I did not have a deep sleep and the journey continued through the next day. I noticed a change in the thought patterns. Namely, I felt that some patterns were amplified, for example, my seeking of the approval from the others. I did not experience any drama at the emotional level.
* Second dose: The second intake happened on the next evening, I took 5 spoons. Quickly I began feeling sick and I vomited. I felt dizzy and had a vertex. My visual field was disintegrated, I saw flashes / sparks combined with auditory hallucinations. I could walk on my own but I needed a facilitator to watch over me while walking and support me the first time I stood up. Some thought patterns were strongly amplified. Suddenly I got an insight, I realized that iboga is showing me my own toxic thoughts. Thought loops which I normally nurture, but they do only harm for me. Examples: resentment towards God. Victimhood. Resentment.
Fear of failing, doing wrong. Constant inner tension. This processing happened when I was laying down, with eyes closed. The visuals were strong, but nothing like the beautiful psilocybin / ayahuasca, but quite ugly, comparable to poor definition computer graphics on Windows 95. The visuals kept appearing one after another like in a slideshow. They were nonsensical, but still they were stimulating the generation of a meaning in my mind. That's how the above mentioned thought patterns were appearing. At the same time, I felt as if I had a chance to let go of these patterns. A sort of a purgatory. I can confirm what I read before, that the process feels like a defragmentation of the mind.
* Third dose: On the next day I was walking properly, but I was in a deeply introspective mood. I found myself enjoying the nature a lot, with all the details. My third dose was two spoons and I had it on the third evening. I did not vomit and the effects were milder, but I was processing the whole night. In total, I did not sleep properly for three nights, but it did not feel like a proper insomnia, it was much less painful.
* After effects: for at least a week I was filled with inner peace and clarity. This sensation did not go away out of sudden, but was fading away gradually for two months. In this period I was reorganizing my priorities and I got some very useful insights into what am I going to do in the future. Looking back to the whole cycle call / decision / intention / process / afterglow I can say I do not regret. The most important gain was to let go of the victimhood mindset. It made my life undoubtedly happier. Yes, I can now see it clearly, that I was blaming others for how I felt. By doing that I was only perpetuating the pain in me.
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