Citation: Plane3x. "Humbled: An Experience with Cannabis & Alcohol (exp48632)". Erowid.org. Feb 21, 2008. erowid.org/exp/48632
Background: I consider myself to be a fairly seasoned traveler. I've explored Cannabis thousands of times, mushrooms several, salvia several, diphenhydramine, opium, xanax, methylphenidate, 2C-B, LSD, and amphetamine. Two years ago I chain smoked and got rather drunk drinking hard liqour on a regular (sometimes weekly, sometimes as often as daily) basis. I quit both habits after roughly 9 months, but continued to smoke marijuana, as I have for the past 3 1/2 years.
Making the mix all the more interesting is an odd hallucinogenic disorder. I've never been able to receive a set diagnosis on it - perhaps it's an odd form of a panic disorder; however, as anyone that knows me well can say, I'm the image of calm and mellow. In any event, 150 mg of sertraline daily keeps the disorder at bay. Hallucinations are evident at night and when I wake up in the morning, but during the day after taking my sertraline they generally stay at bay. My disorder first showed itself at the same time I began to delve into psychedelics, so I'm unable to say how (if at all) it has affected my experiences, as I'd never used any drugs (marijauna, alcohol, and tobacco included) before I was diagnosed. I've had my bad trips like all travelers are destined to one day, but I've always made it through in a positive way. In an odd way, my disorder has seemed to make psychedelic experiences seem like an odd mix between the outrageous and the norm, and I generally find them to be easy-going, deeply enriching/enlightening experiences.
Set: Down in the city with multiple friends, all experienced travelers as well; most are art students. Most of the past 8 hours leading up to the point in question have been moving to and from various houses, as well as out on the banks of the Mississippi River, smoking marijuana. I'd approximate that 1/4 oz. has been consumed so far, using everything from pipes to joints to blunts to bongs. Most important friends on the scene are Joey and Bridget. Most of the other people we are with are their friends and I have never met them before, but I trust Joey and Bridget, so I have no problem being social with them. The moment in question begins when we decide to head to a friend's house even deeper in the city. I'll ride with Bridget, Joey's going off on his own to get beer and will meet us at the house.
We arrive at the house and settle down comfortably. The owner has a dog, a golden retriever, who's friendly and gentle, but probably was a little too anxious - she couldn't sit still. I felt sorry for her, but as she got used to our presence she calmed down. Myself, Bridget, and 5 others sit down and roll a blunt of medium grade buds. We go outside onto the owner's porch and proceed to spark it. I'd say the blunt contained roughly 2 grams packed in rather tightly. We sit on the porch, and my friends become fascinated at my knowledge of drugs (specifically hallucinogens) and their pharmacology and effects. I'm planning to major in neuropharmacology, so to me this aspect of drugs has been fascinating and essential - how could one take something into their body without knowing what it's going to do? We finish the blunt and I'm stoned. We proceed to pack and smoke about 6 other bowls from a friend's pipe, and finally stop when Joey comes back with a couple boxes of Bacardi Silver Raz. We head inside and I drink 3 over the course of about 45 minutes.
Here's where things get interesting, but first I must digress slightly. As I mentioned earlier, I'm a rather experienced smoker, smoking cannabis usually twice daily for two years by this time. As I also mentioned, I have a hallucinogenic disorder. I've found that ANYTIME I've smoked buds, I've had mild closed eye visuals (CEV's from here on in). I've never tripped without smoking buds as well, as I find it helps calm me down and direct my journey, so I'm used to being stoned and also tripping rather hard. I've read from time to time about having unexpected, intense inner journeys after only smoking weed, but had never experienced one myself; I certainly didn't expect to without being under the influence of something else. Tonight would change that.
My friends and I decide to smoke again, and Joey suggests the owner of the house get out his 4-hose gravity bong. No dice, one of the hoses broke, he tells us; however, he does have a home-made gravity bong out of a soda bottle, which he attests to work just as well, though only one person can hit it at a time. We agree, and proceed to pack roughly gram bowls each. Joey, Bridget, and the owner went before I did, loading the bowl tight with buds, screwing the lid onto the top of the bottle, torching it as they slowly pulled up on the bottle, sucking the entire bowl into the chamber, quickly unscrewing the lid, putting their mouth over the top, pushing down and inhaling as long as they could. They manged to clear the chamber in two hits, and sat back coughing like they'd had the wind knocked out of them, and rightly so - a gram of buds in two hits is quite a bit! In retrospect, reflecting on the amount, I'm not surprised I was graced with this experience, but I didn't expect it at the time. This bowl would bring my dosage up to right around 1/2 oz. In any event, now it was my turn, the full gram packed in the bowl, all of the smoke in the chamber, unscrew the lid, mouth over the top, push down innnhaaaalleeeee deeeeeeeepppp.....
I momentarily blacked out, finding myself sitting back ackwardly on the carpet, coughing. 'Holy shit, dude! You just cleared the chamber in one hit!'
'Chamber? eh?' For a moment I had no idea who or where I was, let alone that I had smoked. Then I saw the bong and it made some sense. I kept coughing, and tried to sit down on the carpet, but I suddenly felt a push to go outside. I got up and stumbled through the kitchen and out the back door. It was a mild 70 degrees that night, and on the porch I saw a fluffy recliner chair, into which I graciously collapsed.
'Oh man, I'm so high. My heart; I feel my heart.'
I knew I was STONED. I also knew that I would've had to smoke several pounds to overdose, but despite this fact, I had a nagging fear that I had smoked too much. I assured myself that I hadn't, and moved on. Despite getting over the fear, my breath was still coming in short gasps, and I was coated in sweat and felt hot all over, despite the cold air. I leaned back and closed my eyes and felt like I was knocked backwards by the visuals. Complex fractals, inexplainable 3-D solids, and even mushrooms all colored in neon and swirling in a vortex came flying towards me at what seemed millions of miles per hour.
'Man, I smoked too much - I'm not even enjoying this,' I thought to myself. 'Maybe there's a reason, maybe you should find it, maybe it's in you, maybe you already know.'
The last few lines didn't seem to come from me, but from somewhere further down deep beneath my consciousness. I made a focused effort to relax my muscles, and began forcing myself to breath no faster than one inhale per what seemed 3 seconds, then an exhale that lasted an additional 3 seconds. I could feel the blood vessels around my skull pounding, and my mouth was arid and dry. I started focusing on my breathing, and began trying to meditate. After what seemed an eternity, with patterns and shapes still tearing past my closed eyes at insane speeds, I saw in my minds eye a still pool of crystal water. As I watched in awe with closed eyes, I saw a single large drop plunk into the pool, and the waves being to undulate out in all directions, slowly, rhythmically, calmly. I found stability in the ripples, and made them my center of meditation.
Despite only one drop having fallen, the ripples continued, and I continued to focus on them. Suddenly, I was aware of my body beyond simply my closed eyes, and felt the cool breeze softly caressing my sweat-soaked skin. I had a sense of confusion, knowing that I hadn't asked for this experience, but that I had received it all the same. Was I meant to? Yes, I had already come to that conclusion. But why? I opened my eyes, and looked up to see the full moon rising into the sky behind an ash tree in the back yard. I was struck with a feeling of calm, a feeling of peace, a feeling of tranquility that transcends explaining. I realized that up to this point I had been using smoking and other drugs simply as a way to get high - I had strayed from an earlier pledge I had made to use them to forge deeper and deeper into myself in search of my own spiritual answers to life's questions. I realized the precious gift this experience had given me, and I felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude towards the cannabis plant for sharing this insight, this knowledge.
I continued to stare at the moon for what seemed hours, feeling its naked pale light cleansing the depths of my soul. I noticed the other stars, and felt a strange sense of loneliness at the realization that the light I was seeing from them was likely millions of years old; yet the moon stayed in my center of vision, and I've yet to see anything so beautiful. I was finally pulled away by Joey coming to the door and asking, 'Dude, are you ok? You've been out here for like 30 minutes, man.'
'Ya man, I'm fine, it's just too beautiful.'
He looked at me with a puzzled smile, and went back inside. I had the feeling he thought I was too fucked up and babbling, but I knew differently. I'd seen the moon.
Since that day I've strived to make meditation and inner journeys a daily part of my life, and refuse to smoke cannabis without meditating and reflecting on my life - I find it a rude snub in the nose to use it simply to get high - I actually get downright irritated when others do. Yet, when I see others misusing the plant as such, instead of becoming angry and scolding them, I softly tell them, 'Man, you need to find where you're going, where you think that's taking you, and how you want to go through your journey.' They look at me weirdly and ask, 'What are you talkin about man, are you stoned?' I reply: 'You know what I mean. You'll know when you see the moon.'
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