Mushrooms - P. cubensis
Citation: holothewise. "Calmly Accepting the Body as Car: An Experience with Mushrooms - P. cubensis (exp115338)". Erowid.org. Apr 15, 2021. erowid.org/exp/115338
Having experienced various doses of P. cubensis, including regular micro-dosing (0.1-0.2g) for depression, I decided to try a more intense experience, using 4 grams of a batch of mushrooms that had proven strongly euphoric in a 2 gram dose about 3 months prior. Note that, given the regular use of microdoses, it is likely my tolerance is somewhat higher than it otherwise might be.
I took the 4 grams at home, lying on a pullout bed with a "blanket cave" built over it, candles on the table nearby and a fire nearby. My partner was around keeping an eye on things so that I could simply relax and immerse myself in the experience. I had prepared a carefully curated playlist, and had headphones and a sleeping mask ready. I consumed the mushrooms with a little yogurt and honey.
T+00:30 - Experienced a mild wave of euphoria and a little tightness in my stomach/nausea. No body load (which had been present in my previous encounter with this batch). I was up and about at this stage, lighting the fire and just generally pottering around the house, a bit restless while the cats took over my blanket cave.
T+00:45 - Started getting mild closed eye visuals, like mosaics tiles behind my eyelids. Otherwise felt normal, tranquil. Mild nausea at this point and some gentle visual distortions, house plants misbehaving out the corner of my eye, that sort of thing. There was a bit of body load at this stage but still not intense.
T+01:30 - At this point I had entered the "blanket cave", lying on the pullout bed with a roof of sheet/crocheted blanket about half a meter above me, open at the one side do I could still see the fire and candles. I listened to the start of my playlist through the headphones, sleeping mask on - intent on journeying. One of the big questions that has been plaguing me recently was part of the intent going in: specifically, how to deal with the basic necessity of operating in a capitalist system/society that is a complete disconnect from my personal values/morals. Of course, as always with mushrooms, what I experienced was tangential but not quite the answer I was looking for.
In this first wave, I felt a bit like I was seeing the earth as an astronaut would - this didn't feel random however, it was pretty consciously directed - but what surprised me was that the predominant emotion was loneliness. That seeing the beauty and fragility of earth from space must engender both an appreciation for everything on the planet and a deep-seated sense of isolation and aloneness, even in the confines of a space station or ship with other astronauts at such close quarters. I emerged from this somewhat melancholy reflection needing to urinate (very common for me on mushrooms), and made a quick trip to the bathroom before settling in for the next stage. The whole trip from here proceeded in 20-30 min increments like this punctuated by bathroom breaks.
T+02:00 - My reflections turned towards my home, my partner and the life we are building together, and at this point I started to feel quite emotional. I saw our life together as a river, one long, meandering oath that eventually led us to the sea. What was interesting about this realisation, was the fact that each of our lives up till the point of us being together were very clearly tributaries of this one river. They were always going to meet here. I saw myself and my partner as old women together and felt an intense wash of love for her.
I tried to turn my attention to the question at hand: How do I exist, provide for my family (us two, the cats and a dog), build this togetherness, while feeling so frustrated with the status quo of capitalism etc. It occurred to me that the home we had built was the one place where we could both simply exist as we were, with no expectations or demands to be anything other than that. That even though it was necessary to take care of the material aspects, actually, the main importance lay in that river, that journey, and the fact that wherever it went we were going there together, inextricably interlinked from here on in. I felt tears brimming at this, and took a couple of very deep breaths - bathroom break number 2. No strong open-eye visuals at this stage. In between closed eye journeys, I was surprisingly clear-headed, coordinated and lucid, talking to my partner as normal and easily maneuvering around the house.
T+02:30-03:00 - Over this period, the peak was definitely kicking in, and I lay back to enjoy the ride. Three interesting things kicked into play here. Firstly, I realised my playlist included a lot of songs with feminine voices humming/harmonising and there was a playful sense of feminine divine teasing the edges of my consciousness, but nothing more concrete.
As the peak built however, I entered a blissful state of just "being", keenly aware that I could leave the existence of a body behind and allow my mind/self to simply hover in this state - very similar to the deepest states of meditation. I wouldn't quite characterise this as a "break-through" event, and certainly not ego dissolution, but I became very aware of the fact that my body was "just a car", a vehicle through which I experienced the world that had little to no bearing on the state I was currently experiencing - this golden, hovering state of simply being. There was no apprehension here, I was super happy to come to this realisation. I suspect a regime of regular meditation for around six weeks before this experience made it very easy and effortless to be in this space. Cue bathroom break number three as "the car" quickly made its needs known once more. My partner says that at this point I emerged looking like "I'd been asleep for three weeks" - I didn't immediately have the words to explain to her where I just been. I was also very surprised that only 30 min had gone past.
T+03:30 - Going in for the next wave, it immediately hit me that, if my physical body was "just a car" it should be possible to "test drive" other cars. Again, this thought felt pretty consciously directed. I played around with the idea of what it might feel like to be various animals. I found myself in water, with rays around me, and the sensation of what it might feel like to have water and then air rushing across my "wings" as I breached the surface of the sea. This was pretty fun, and I turned my attention to other animals - an owl in flight hunting a mouse with tunnel vision focused on that single moving point below, a nudibranch undulating in water, a lion, making a kill.
That last one proved most interesting, the feeling of claws and teeth sinking into living flesh in a very present and immediate way. This was not at all distressing, simply a feeling of power and strength and lethality. Later, as I discussed this with my partner, I realised that part of what made it so interesting was that it was the exertion of power without ego. There was no agenda, no self clouding the action, simply being. This brought me to the realisation that animals in general seem to inhabit their "cars" with a far greater sense of immediacy and presence than we do - lost as we are in perpetual rumination.
T+03:45 - Past the peak now, I knew I wasn't going to be journeying any further this night. I suddenly felt very lucid, and like I needed to physically move/dance (which I did a little). I then proceeded to consume a cheeseburger my love had thoughtfully ordered a few hours earlier, knowing I like to ground myself with food after such experiences.
What I found very interesting was that there was really no taper off after this point, no visual effects whatsoever (even closed eye) no real afterglow - I was simply back and easily went to bed a couple of hours later. In past experiences I've been twitchy and still having roving thoughts when trying to get to sleep, but this was very "clean" somehow.
Overall, the experience was very positive and uplifting and the next day I felt gently relaxed and eager to meditate/walk in the woods as I often enjoy doing. Next time, I think a 6 gram dose is in order to truly break through and further my exploration of the state of simply "being".
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