Citation: Murple. "A Bad Combination: An Experience with Pharmahuasca (Syrian Rue & 5-MeO-DMT) (exp2362)". Erowid.org. Jul 13, 2000. erowid.org/exp/2362
Dec. 20, 1997
I decided to be experimental tonight. It is a well known fact that DMT is not orally active, unless taken with an MAO inhibitor like harmaline, this being the principle behind ayahuasca. Having both an alkaloidal extract of P. harmala from a supplier of poisonous nonconsumables and some 5-MeO-DMT, I decided to see what effects if any an ayahuasca analog based on 5-MeO-DMT would have. None of the books in my possession mention this combination, and I have even seen a few sources on the Internet claiming that it would not work, and that 5-MeO-DMT is not potentiated by MAOIs, something which always seemed suspicious to me. I've tried smoking 5-MeO-DMT while under the influence of the harmala alkaloids, and did not notice any significantly greater effects, however.
For this experiment, I took a capsule of what I estimate to be 75-85mg of the harmala extract, a yellow, clumpy powder. Into this capsule, I placed a pretty large ammount of 5-MeO-DMT, about 3 times what I would use if I were smoking it, somewhere probably in the neighborhood of 20-30mg. Lack of an accurate scale makes it impossible to say for certain exact dosages used here.
From what I had read of ayahuasca, I guessed that the effects, if there were to be any, would come on in about 20 minutes. I think I was expecting some sort of shortened psilocybin-like trip. Since smoked 5-MeO-DMT is shorter acting than DMT (by about half the time), I was expecting this experience to also be shorter than the 3 hours or so ayahuasca is supposed to last.
I attempted to keep a log of what happened, but was completely unable to. I made one entry when I took the capsule, at 12:34AM, and then one at 1:09AM. This is an attempt at summarizing the experience, at 9:28AM, just after waking up. I regret not having been able to log more while the experience was actually happening, but it was not a trip I'm going to forget soon, and I should be able to summarize it pretty well even without a detailed log.
Ingest capsule. I turn off the lights and lay down and wait to feel something.
I begin to feel some physical effects. Vaguely psychedelic, but there is a mild nausea.
I am definately feeling psychedelic effects beginning, and building very rapidly. Mental effects are beginning, as are some mild visual effects.
I am at this point tripping, and fairly hard at that. It doesn't feel like anything I've experienced before. While it is definitely a tryptamine trip, it has its own quality. It's not at all psilocybin or LSD like, not even like those drugs if taken in combination with harmala. Its not even that much like smoked 5-MeO-DMT. It definately had a visual component to it, but the visuals are slightly and indescribably different from other psychedelics I've had. Things did not look unusually distorted,
in fact it was almost as if there was more of a sharpness to colors and shapes. There was none of the rippling or breathing effect common with other psychedelics. The visual aspect was definately not the most prominent effect however, just as with smoked 5-MeO-DMT - but it was definitely there, whereas with smoked 5-MeO-DMT, I rarely have any visual effect at all. Physically, I felt nauseous, an effect I occasionally get with smoked 5-MeO-DMT. This made it a quite uncomfortable trip, and I kept wondering if I should throw up, or whether I would puke even if I didn't want to. It should be noted though that I was somewhat sick before taking the drugs, and this may just have been an amplification - I once had a similar experience taking LSD with a cold, and was incredibly nauseous and had to puke several times. Mentally, the effects were quite strong, but were discolored by preoccupation with my physical discomfort. This led to some negative effects later on.
Scribbled a quick log entry mentioning that the combination definitely worked, but with alot of physical side-effects. I was too shaky to write more than 4 sentences. I reached peak effects within a few minutes of this.
I spent these 50 minutes in peak effect. Until about 1:30, the nausea was very pronounced, probably because I kept focusing on it. Breathing was difficult and my heart was pounding. I had quite a few thoughts that I would die. I kept trying to comfort myself by thinking 'It will be over soon, its just 5-MeO-DMT' but it didn't work all that well. I kept laying down in the dark with my eyes closed, then getting up and turning on the lights and walking around my room aimlessly, hoping it would end soon.
After about 1:20, I decided to lay in bed with the lights off and just ride the trip out, realizing that I had taken what must be a massive overdose. The nausea passed by about 1:30, and the trip got significantly better. I was able to get past my mental preoccupation with my physical symptoms. I began thinking 'God, what am I doing to myself with these weird drugs?' - a common thought I have on bad trips, especially with LSD. This passed very quickly into thoughts about treating my body better, with a focus on why I should eat healthier. Negative thoughts were gradually replaced by more positive ones. I began playing games with myself, such as not looking at the clock for a while and trying to guess how much time had passed before looking. It was always later than I guessed when I did look. By about 2AM the peak was over, but the trip was definately not over.
Sometime between 2:30 and 2:45, I began to fade into the half-sleep I sometimes can go into after the peak of a psychedelic. I was still tripping very hard, but not peaking. It was actually quite pleasant by this time.
I come out of the half-sleep state, and look at the clock, and am quite surprised to see the time. It seemed as if only 10 or 15 minutes had passed, and I was amazed that two hours had. I was still tripping quite hard. I got up and went to use the bathroom, then went back and lay down again. Shortly after, within 15 minutes, I fell asleep for real. I had quite bizzarre, very visual dreams which I still remember quite well but
prefer not to discuss because they were too weird and surreal to try and put into words.
I wake up. I feel rested, and not able to fall back asleep. Oddly, my cold also seems to be mostly gone. This is probably from the echinacea I took yesterday evening, though. After using the bathroom and getting a soda, I begin to write this report.
I would like to try some other experiments with this combination. First, I'm quite sure I took way too much 5-MeO-DMT this time, and would like to try it with a lower dose, and without a cold. I think this would entirely eliminate the nausea aspects. I would also like to give the combination to someone else and see what they think of it. I'm also curious to try 5-MeO-DMT without any of the harmala alkaloids, even though everything I've read says it would not be orally active on its own. I suspect it would do nothing, but I have enough that it would be worth a try. Last night's experiment was uncomfortable, but I've had enough bad trips on LSD with similar physical discomforts to know that the nausea and racing heart and difficulty breathing could have been entirely psychological, based on the fact that I did have a cold, and was unprepared, and probably overdosed significantly. I'm prepared to give it another try.
I never had the guts to try this combination again, which I think is probably for the best. When I read Shulgin's TiHKAL in 1999, I read that 5-MeO-DMT in combination with MAOIs has caused some dangerous hypertensive experiences, which certainly fits in with the headaches and pounding heartbeat I experienced. After having experienced real ayahuasca since this trip, I also now know that the nausea comes with the territory and was not due to my cold.
Another interesting aside... as I noted in my original report, I came away from this trip strongly suspecting that 5-MeO-DMT would be active orally on its own. This was entirely an intuitive hunch, not based on anything concrete. I brought the subject up to a few people and it was dismissed out of hand, and I never tried the experiment. Earlier this year (2000), I read that Ott had discovered that 5-MeO-DMT is in fact orally active without MAOIs.
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