Citation: tachyon. "The Universe Is A Quantum Computer: An Experience with 2C-I (exp33513)". Erowid.org. Aug 16, 2004. erowid.org/exp/33513
4:15 PM PST I took my first trip via an enervated body --- lack of sleep from the night before started me out with the general air of pre-dreamy incontrol, the kind of feeling you get when you keep at doing something you want to get done when you're especially tired, the salient identification of mind-wandering off, as if utterly undisciplined.
At around 8 PM, its effects became obvious to me. Prior to that, I'd taken them to be the usual vision distortion I get for looking at far away items without my glasses (I am nearsighted). Thus, perhaps the effect might have occurred earlier. I first noticed the effects while looking up at the gabled ceilings. Setting description: the roof was composed of these horizontal wooden slabs spaced about 3 inches wide and around 1 foot long, with ridges in between horizontal pieces; long support structures go vertically relative to the plane at each foot, stretching at a constant slope in the z direction. I noticed the ridges started distorting in a repeititive way. Later on, I would become 'familiar' enough with this distortion to label it as 'myriad mouths' ... as if the ceiling was speaking (yet, I experienced no perceptible audio effects).
Let me try to describe the pattern I saw in more detail: the ridges are normally straight lines, however I started seeing these amplitude varying wave envelopes which looked like mouths talking -- they looked superposed onto the ceiling along the ridges, yet they also look like the sort of visual distortion I get from squinting my eyes (normally). Despite the oddity, there was an order to them: they were periodically repeating both in animation and location.
Earlier on, I tried reading a textbook on Clifford Algebra. I was disgusted at finding my reading rate reduced to that of my record low: one page per hour! I was told that 2C-I was an incredible memory drug, but I had difficulty concentrating on forming the right concrete memories in order to flip onto the next page! My Drugsmaster and lover Strange Quark was with me for most of the first day. At around 5, disappointed, I stated nothing's occurred, perhaps the dosage was too low. He told me that 2C-I in small doses gave him feelings of empathy, in essence, like an aphrodisiac. I was still trying to read my Clifford Algebra textbook, when he came back from number theory (5-ish). He slumped down on the bed, stating that he was tired. I was overcome with this intense need to hold him, and before I knew it, we were wrapped in the most intense game of Body Twister, ever. Everything felt more intense. I felt more sensitive and even more convinced that I was madly in love with him. Was it the placebo effect, or might 2C-I also act as an aphrodisiac?
It was wrapped up as such, that in the fading light of twilight, I realized these patterns I saw between 7 and 8 weren't merely the distortion of my myopic eyes. (Later on and during the morning after, it felt as if I knew exactly what he was thinking. When he described his experience of going on a walk and feeling extremely ecstatic, fascinated with existence, in love with life... so much that he would stand out in the ice cold rain for hours and hours, experiencing that feeling, the essence of that almost-graspable... While he was giving this discription, patterns formed off in a nearby wall, and somehow these geometric objects conveyed a further message, further amplifying the theme of almost-graspable, yet vainly not so. Throughout my trip, I had difficulty focusing on just one topic; I had difficulty analyzing something too long without becoming fascinated by something else. I wasn't capable of expressing much of what I experienced via speech or words, aside from these mental conversations which might not be words after all. I found myself extremely dyslexic, unable to read.)
At around 9 PM, I realized that these patterns were generated by my perception of various objects at different angles and via different pupil focusings -- my pupils were twice their usual size most of the time. (As I stared at them in the mirror in the brightly lit bathroom, I realized I could change their sizes by will.) I became fascinated at staring down objects; it seems as if I could comprehend a global pattern from sampling a local bit. That was the theme of the 'studies' that took up most of my experience on 2C-I. (The patterns varied, and it seemed each object had its own unique pattern that I could see if I stare and dilate my pupils in a certain fashion. The pattern was almost always animated. It didn't exactly interfere with my perception of reality, as the pattern always looked superposed onto its object.)
CLIMAX (9 PM)
The climax perhaps lasted for a few minutes, when these patterns grew out of control: I saw them without even having to try to see them. They were just *there.* I was overcome with a feeling of nostalgia, as if I saw these when I was young -- I do have memories of seeing patterns in the dark right before I fell asleep, and then there was the Rachmaninoff that would start playing, and this excruciating fear of yet anticipation for it, but this tendency faded as I grew older --- but have forgotten them, become unable to see them, and am now finally seeing the truth so obvious I had known before.
There was that sense of if I had to choose anything I could do --- what would I do? I realized that I couldn't focus on reading a textbook because it was too mediocre (mea culpa, heh heh), and that in this altered state of consciousness, my attention demanded something more pure. Yet, I couldn't single out one thing extreme enough to work on.
Currently, I am a physics major in a school that is experimenting on ways to make physics education better. In the process of which, the curriculum of one of my courses has reverted to that of the dread high-school-chaos-sort: 'course journals,' 'group discussion,' and 'participation' were worth almost half of one's grade. Physics is the type of subject that I have difficulty discussing with my fellow physics majors... they tend to confuse me more than I am already confused, and the course is on string theory. Anyway, I had a sort of instinctual need to read that Clifford Algebra book, among other things, lest my grades dissatisfy me. I was overcome by the feeling of arbitrariness of that particular 'grading criteria.' The course journal and discussions seemed like pointless BS one would do just 'for a grade.' To my joy, this is only the second course I've taken in college that had elements that took precious time away from studying the material well.
And then, I was overcome by the feeling of how arbitrary society was. It makes sense that one has to 'work' in order to be 'paid,' but I felt immensely saddened by how, in many cases, one cannot seriously work on something one wants to work on without having to accept the BS and pointless standards of society. For example, my personal interpretation of quantum mechanics, which I have had for a long time, will not be accepted until several years after I've obtained a PhD (or perhaps even longer). There is this tradition, such as academicians do not respect non-degrees. Yet, in the process of obtaining a degree, I would have to take these courses that serve nothing but to waste my time! And, there is just so little of it! They say that after 30, your mathematical abilities dwindle, and you cannot see the new that galvanized and excited you and motivated you to do all that BS and kissing-up while you were young.
There are these professors who claim that you should study something slowly until you understand it; yet, with all this arbitrary BS you have to do just to get a degree, you can't possibly afford to study anything slowly... without finding yourself too old to do anything by the time you get your degree.
I seem to be going off a soapbox tangent. Yet, although this might seem petty to you, it is my greatest worry now. A part of me longs to experience Thoreau's Walden for more than the few weeks he tried it on. To be able to take a few select books and my computer into some abandoned log-cabin in the middle of the woods hooked with nothing but perhaps a high-speed internet connection. I want to develop my skills without having to deal with landlords, assignments that do nothing but waste time. Moreover, I want to know the limits of my own ability to develop and create --- freed of the distractions of living in the real world: the irksome street construction-work that never stops, TV-sounds and fights from next door... What if I could study in the midst of serenity; would I find myself distracted less often, to extent where I become unable to function?
I decided to take a shower, since I'd felt groggy the whole day. While in the shower, I started analyzing the faucet. Ordinarily: it's a circular metal slab in the shower tiles, with a faucet-turn-thing at the top part. With years of San Diego's hard hard HARD water, it's developed a sort of rainbow, oil-surface pattern on it. It seemed to move, as if to reform itself right in front of my eyes, in real-time, and I started seeing patterns from it. I had a sort of epiphany, as I became totally convinced of the validity of my alternate interpretation of quantum mechanics -- which I've had for years.. which along, with these crazy scribblings (chaos to everyone else, but an ordered algorithmic pattern to me) on paper that I think represents the ultimate theory of everything, are forcing me to put up with the oft-obvious senseless required for attaining a degree.
THE UNIVERSE IS A (quantum, duh) COMPUTER~!!!!
I became absolutely convinced.
And then the thought that there are people who've come across the ultimate unified theory and just decided not to share it... or perhaps were forbidden from sharing it for lack of a degree: they couldn't afford to waste the most precious years of their lives on the ultimately pointless hassle of getting a degree.
Anyway, the remembrance of Ramachandran's studies of people with temporal lobe epilepsy who have experiences of 'conversations with God...' caught me, as this voice started talking to me (I don't consider this an audio effect because it was internal, like the conversations I have in my head), and he sounded like some enlightened being, perhaps the supreme creator of the universe, multiverse, yossiverse. Yet, in a petty way, his voice reminded me of the aliens from Spielberg's AI talking to that AI kid. As I toweled up, euphoric that the dearest thing I'd suspected was right, the voice laughed (or was it many others) and they (or he?) said something along the lines of 'You're part of the club now... and you're doomed to want to understand why that is so.'
I went back to trying to study Clifford Algebra again, now that the drug seems to be taking obvious effect. I still couldn't concentrate. I started having these conversations in my head. I actually usually have them -- they're like the sort of hypothetical situation scenarios that sort of blend in with daydreams. Although I had philosophic discussions with myself and these 'other people' in my head, none of the issues were ones I've not encountered before. Disappointed, I went back to the patterns.
I decided to eat some strawberries. 77 cents from Food4Less. An odd price for a good sized package of strawberries, even in California. I noticed their pungent near over-ripe smell, as I took them from the fridge. With my pattern-searching eyes, I looked at them. For some reason, it felt as if they were talking to me. I could sense its life-history, yet I couldn't concretely understand the events of its life. The strawberry seemed like an innocent entity forced into the dark-side. It appeared to emanate a sort of evil, yet I ate it, thinking I was just imagining things.
I took another strawberry, and I stared at it. The seed speck dots created a pattern that's already faded in my memory. Suddenly, I saw one of the dots moving. It was a white dot, slowly slithering, and I wasn't sure if it was the pattern diverging in a new fashion into another (usually, the patterns diverge in a coherent way, so that all of the pattern sub-components move simultaneously) via just one pattern-subcomponent... or an actual bug. It looked like the extremely small black bugs that are about two 0.7mm pencil lead-dots long, but instead it was white. I had experienced vaginal, perhaps urethral smelliness, for the past few days -- might parasitic ingestion be the cause? To verify that it was a real bug, I barged into the bathroom on Strange Quark, my Drugsmaster. He saw it moving, too. In hindsight, it seems as if the strawberries were warning me. I tried 'communicating' with them again, but I found myself unable to. Already, my rationality was overwhelming me: should I take it to the health-center for parasitic analysis or should I get a microscope to analyse it myself.
The morning afterwards, the enervation stayed; it felt like the sort of mental draining you get from having to do too much pointless repetitive extremely easy homework. Perhaps it was the excessive amount of pattern analysis and extreme detail-oriented observation, yet this is the first time I've ever felt burnt out from studying something that is so fascinating. Is there such a thing as neural super-activation leading to a hang-over? 24 hours later, my eyes felt sore, as if I'd read a thousand books non-stop, perhaps that is due to the pupil dilation and constriction as I 'zoomed in' on multiple dimensions of the patterns.
Yet, I still saw patterns the morning afterwards -- fainter, and more in my head, than in the world. I could 'manipulate' the sort of random dots you see when you shut your eyes into patterns that animate and diverge/converge into other patterns. Likewise, in faint lighting. However, even in bright lighting, I have become more aware of the graininess of what I see -- as if the world were made up of extremely tiny pixels. I can manipulate these pixels into patterns. As of now, it is around 8 PM the next day, and I can still see traces of these patterns by will. Although much fainter, the essence of the effects are still with me; I have observed the grainy nature of the fundamentals of reality, a glimpse at a controversial truth I had suspected.
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