Citation: Riggs. "From Confusion to Peace: An Experience with LSD (exp68891)". Erowid.org. Apr 19, 2018. erowid.org/exp/68891
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LSD had always fascinated me since I had first read about it in Ram Dass's book Be Here Now. I never seemed to be able to find it in my area, and prior to this first experience, I had only tried marijuana and mushrooms. When the chance came to purchase two hits of liquid LSD on altoids, I immediately took the offer. I was uncertain of the strength of each hit, so I decided that I would take one, wait for the effects, than either take the second or give it to my friend B depending on the quality.
I waited until the weekend, and met up with two friends, J and B, around 2 in the afternoon. I took my first altoid hit around this time, letting it sit under my tongue and dissolve. My friends and I sat in my room until I started to feel different, at which point I decided it would be best to distance myself from my unknowing family and go for a walk.
J took us on a quick drive to a local park, where we got out and began to walk through the woods. The first effects of the LSD manifested in how I perceived the clouds- they seemed very flat, and I could see very defined rays of light shining down between them. In the forest, the trees seemed to be convulsing in unison, bending in towards me against the wind. I had experienced similar 'breathing' effects on mushrooms, and I decided that I wanted to surpass that previous experience, so I took the second hit. At this point it was about 3:00, an hour after my first hit.
Another friend of ours called and told us he had the house to himself for several hours, so we decided to head over to his place. On the walk back to the car, the paths in the park seemed to have stretched out since my previous walk through them, and the mud under my shoes had a much stranger feeling. The clouds had begun to warp, and turn in on each other, almost forming a tunnel.
By the time we got to the car, I was truly starting to trip. Time seemed incredibly slow, and the music playing through the car stereo took on new dimensions. The sound seemed deeper, and the directional mixing of each song became much more distinct. My companions decided that they were going to pick up some weed, as well as some food at the local grocery store.
Upon arriving at the grocery store, my trip took a turn for the worse. I am not sure whether it was that I was simply overwhelmed by the experience, or if the way I staggered my doses altered things, but I became very confused. The grocery store was crowded, and in my state, the crowding was further amplified. I kept losing my train of thought as I was distracted by dozens of signs and fellow shoppers. My friends chose a few snacks then went to the express aisle. While standing in line with them, I felt sudden rushes of anxiety and confusion. Every object that had the potential to carry an image (mirrors, windows, television screens, electronic cash registers) seemed to flash pictures and words at me at blindingly fast rates. I felt as if I could not properly feel my body, and that at any moment I would soil myself without realizing it, in the middle of a crowded grocery store.
I told my friend B that was I feeling very lost and that he needed to stay with me. We moved through the line (which felt like eternity), and quickly left the store. Out in the parking lot, J and B met up with their dealer and purchased their weed. We drove to our friend's house and went into his basement at around 4 PM.
My confusion and fear had reached new heights, and I lay down on his couch and tried to relax as the rest of my companions played video games. When I closed my eyes I was overwhelmed with visions of writhing patterns and shapes, of many different colors. Time seemed to slow to an almost unbearable level - I would open my eyes, gradually remember who I was, where I was, and what I had taken, then look at the clock and realize not even a minute had passed, although it had felt like I had my eyes closed for hours. This process repeated itself seemingly hundreds of times over the next two hours, and I was sure I was going to go insane. I kept telling my friend B that I was scared, and that maybe I should just go back to my own house, just so I was safe. I was certain that at any moment, I would forget everything and be forgotten by everyone - that I would cease to exist. The prospect of that ego-death was horrifying to me, and the resulting resistance I had to it led to the greatest sense of fear and confusion I have ever felt in my life.
During this time spent on the couch, I did experience interesting visual and auditory hallucinations. My friends were playing the video game 'Rock Band', which can have four players playing instruments at once. When I focused on the screen long enough, it seemed as if the virtual singer on the screen was standing next to me, and singing specifically to me. Also, noises made by my friends eating or newly arriving friends entering the house, seemed to sync up with the songs played by the video game, creating new and wild beats.
Because of the near arrival of parents at this particular house, and given my terrified state, my friends decided it would be best to find a new place to stay at. At around 6:30 PM, J and B drove me to another friends house, who happened to have a gigantic basement, complete with a ping pong table, air hockey table, huge TV, and tons comfortable furniture. My girlfriend met up with us at this house, and her presence seemed to comfort me slightly. However, the real turning point in my trip was when I decided to start playing air hockey. By applying myself to the world around me, instead of reclining on a couch, I seemed to convince myself that I truly did exist. The LSD allowed me to play with an unparalleled amount of focus, and I had realizations about myself and the game.
The LSD allowed me to play with an unparalleled amount of focus, and I had realizations about myself and the game.
I saw how air hockey perfectly demonstrated newtons law of motion, that each and every force had an equal and opposite force. A fast shot on an air hockey table can easily reflect back with the same speed, and the puck is kept in constant motion. My opponents seemed to try to force their will on the puck, hitting it aggressively, and it only seemed to cause them to score on themselves. I saw that the way to win was to merely redirect the force and move with the puck, as opposed to forcing my own intention on it. I think this kind of thinking began to apply to my LSD trip as well, because in the process of playing four air hockey games, I lost my former sense of confusion and fear, and began to simply go along with it. I went undefeated before the table itself overheated and refused to work.
At this point, my other friends left the room, leaving me alone to try and fix the table in vain. I gave up, and simply sat on the floor and reflected on the experience. I wasn't sure what time it was, and I thought maybe my acid had started to wear off, which would explain why I felt so peaceful compared to earlier. However, as soon as I thought that, the tiles underneath me began to warp. The darker brown stripes of the tile began to slowly writhe and spread out like liquid. This dark mass seemed to be made up of many small particles, like a swarm of ants, and it crawled from tile to tile, linking up into a larger mass. It crawled up the wall, and up my own arm, until the formerly white room was nearly covered in this dark substance. All at once, it began to swirl in unison, creating a moving pattern on every surface it touched. Instead of frightening me, I was content and in awe of what I was witnessing. I left the room to join my friends in the larger part of the basement, and the patterned mass followed me everywhere I looked. The furry carpet on the floor was breathing peacefully, with each little strand of fabric dancing in the air. I looked down at my arm and could see the black particles flowing through my veins, and my hairs seemed to grow in and out of my arm.
These hallucinations were the peak of my experience, and I now felt completely at peace and unafraid. We left the house around 8:30 and went into a nearby town so my companions could cure their case of the munchies. The car ride was silent aside from the white noise of the air conditioner, which seemed to form soothing music in my ears.
When we arrived, I very nearly started down a negative path again. On a TV next to our table, there was a 'home video' show playing. These videos showed horrible accidents or acts of violence caught on film, similar to shows like COPS. I watched a three minute clip of a man nearly burning to death in his car, as well as a bus running over a woman's head. I was too stunned to speak, and looked around the rest of the restaurant. The restaurant specializes in buffalo chicken wings, which many of the people sitting nearby seemed to be eating. The red hot sauce on their faces seemed almost like blood, and they were watching the show intently. To me they seemed like vicious, bloody animals, enjoying a show of other peoples suffering. I was disgusted by it, but luckily was saved from further negative feelings by my close friend B's sense of humor. He was very stoned, and just as surprised as I was that a show like that could even exist. His commentary on the utter ridiculousness of it entertained me long enough that they could finish eating (I was unable to eat), and we left the restaurant.
Outside we met up with two LSD-experienced friends of mine, and we all sat down on benches and conversed for the next hour or so. They shared their experiences and inquired about mine, as well as offering advice. Both inside the restaurant and outside by the bench, I was seeing patterns on many surfaces. Inside, the excess hot sauce on the plates seemed to form fractals, and outside the sidewalks swirled with the same dark mass I saw before. By the time we left town, it was about 10:30 PM, and we decided to head back to my house.
I entered without incident, and spent the next hour and a half just talking with J and B and watching J play computer games. They both left around 12, and feeling full of energy, I decided I would stay up and listen to music. I listened to two albums straight through, Lateralus by Tool, and Hail to the Thief by Radiohead. Both albums sounded amazing - sound was literally orgasmic, and my closed eye visuals were synced with the music.
sound was literally orgasmic, and my closed eye visuals were synced with the music.
I listened to some Acid Mothers Temple as well, before deciding it was finally time to get some sleep, because I had work at 10:30 the next morning. Finding sleep was difficult, but I finally managed to drift off around 4 am. I woke up the next morning feeling completely refreshed, with no 'burn out' feeling or any residual effects.
Although my trip started out frightening, I felt overall it was a rather enlightening experience. I had many new and exciting ideas, and realizations about human perception. In hindsight, I realized that time seemed so slow because of the sheer amount of information I had to process while on LSD. In normal day to day life, my mind was on autopilot for the most part. I generally do not think about each bite of food, each single sound, each step, each breath or heart beat. But on LSD, I was aware of everything, all at once, and my analysis of each sense made me take life second by second, compared to the autopilot I usually am driven by.
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