Citation: Dense. "An Epiphany: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (exp76137)". Erowid.org. Nov 30, 2012. erowid.org/exp/76137
First of all, I was glad to have someone there sitting me, as my consciousness separated from my body, and while that happens, I lost control of my motor skills and balance, etc. I was in the process of going from sitting to laying, and kept snapping back into my body during that point, and it was a cause of immense distraction. I would advise someone to inhale the smoke, immediately lay down while holding the smoke in, and then exhale. At the moment of exhale, I remember seeing the smoke come out, and suppressing a mild giggle, and then it was into the rabbit hole immediately. There was no time to fall back and lay down, and that kept me in an unstable state, which I had to overcome (on top of many other things, which I'll explain later). I'd also recommend the room to be a perfect temperature, as it was quite cold in my room, and during my brief moments of consciousness, I was struggling to get warm.
I chose to have my adventure with no music, and limited lighting, but it was of such an intensity, that any music or lighting wouldn't be a distraction (at least to me). I think that having a comfortable place is the most important, as well as having an empty bladder, which was also something that was a mild distortion to my experience.
I would also recommend at least
3 hours of being indisposed, even though the act itself requires 30 minutes or less. It is an extreme act and some disorientation was experienced even up to 2 hours after, even though the effects were long gone.
It's been approximately 24 hours now, and I have a very slight nausea (which started upon waking this morning) and a bit of phlegma that I'm fairly certain is caused by the Salvia. Other than that, there is a very slight chemical imbalance in my head, as if I took a great deal of mushrooms or ecstacy; that feeling of the day-after (not the sick feeling) that feels somewhat accomplished and not terrible, but definitely not completely natural. It feels just a bit light-headed like, but with a distinct quality that is unique.
I feel like I'm downplaying the entire incident simply by writing about it, but I'll try to describe what I felt as best as possible. Please realise that there were several streams of interaction all taking place at once, and that is something that is inconceivable until you have experienced it (at least for me).
There were 3 distinct waves of the experience, separated by brief moments of clarity imposed by environmental situations. I'm unsure if there would always be waves like this, or if my experience was marred by these moments. The first 1-2 minutes were the most intense, which was briefly overcome in order to allow myself to lie down and cover (I was quite cold). The next 10-15 minutes were spent feeling like an eternity, and I have a definite gap of memory which I'll explain later. I was then so cold that I had another moment where I asked to be warmed, and continued to have a much milder experience, but one that was able to be controlled as if in meditation. This ended approximately 30 minutes after the initial act of smoking the Salvia. For the next couple of hours, I spent my time analysing the emotions and sights that I experienced, even though they were a sort of mixture of all senses. There are two points whereby I had distinct memory gaps, one remains, and one was discovered this morning after waking. After sleeping through the night, I remembered a few more sensations from the initial 1-2 minutes that were incredibly intense. There remains one gap of memory which I'm personally convinced is deliberate. I'll explain further later.
The first 1-2 minutes is extremely hard to explain, but the part of the most interest, as it establishes a breech between the self, and allows for complete neutrality in perspective of everything. I'll describe first my actual account, and then my explanation:
The first moment was extreme panic, which I would closely tie to the feeling of skydiving for the first or second time: that undeniable feeling that death is coming for a split-second, but as you become comfortable with that concept, everything becomes rather static and free.
After watching the smoke leave my lips, time became completely static and I was feeling sound, seeing touch, and could see the effects of time on the fabric of reality, which was quilted together in melting layers of colours that descended between what I will call 'anchor points.' One of my anchor points was my hand holding onto Digi as I had handed her the pipe, another was her voice, as my reaction freaked her out to the point where she was asking me if I was alright. When I say her voice was an anchor, I mean just that, her words didn't register as words, the sound of her voice was a sort of point on a 3 dimensional graph, and my hand holding hers was another point on that graph in an infinite space, that somehow had limitations due to these very anchor points.
At that exact moment, several themes were prevalent. Time was infinite, yet still moving. There was a sort of ticking melt between Digi's voice and where we held hands. This melt was a sort of accordion-like back and forth motion that made extremely minute progress along a predefined path. As this waving melt made small progress, I felt as if everyone with whom I'd ever had contact was suddenly connected to me in similar anchor points of memories and feelings of which I couldn't actually remember what they were. They just existed in space as points on an infinite graph, connected by melting colours that were in constant repetitive motion like the ticking of a clock. In this immense network of points, I could feel the presence of individuals by observing each accordion movement between the points, however this was done in many streams of consciousness, and all at the same moment. I felt the most resonating points as originating from much closer to wherever I was observing all of these things at once. People like my parents and my wife, but it was without the attachments that I have when I think about them now. They were defined distinctly by these anchor points whereby each interpersonal interaction created an anchor, and I was rushed with the data from all of these experiences at one moment, but was ultimately able to not only keep track of what each point represented, but I was able to move around through these points at will, in a sort of search if I'd had the wish.
Immediately after seeing one of the fans of an accordion-like movement that was ticking back and forth between Digi's voice and my hand holding hers, I was jolted back into my body with a slightly unpleasant sensation (which felt a bit like being turned really quickly for a very very quick split-second) I saw the blanket next to me in a sort of melting haze, and laid back onto the bed. It was at this moment that I was a bit uneasy with my bodily functions, realising that I was very cold, I had the urge to urinate, and that I didn't want to make a mess, nor did I have the ability to create warmth. Luckily I muttered something close to 'cold' and Digi covered me with a blanket.
The next part of my experience is going to be hard to explain simply because I am fairly certain that I have suppressed the memory intentionally. I will explain:
I heard many voices speaking in soft but ultimately stern tones, telling me that I wasn't ready. At that moment, I felt myself lift upwards through the center of my skull, between my eyes, as there was a weaving tunnel that was winding. The tunnel had a fixed but increasing diameter, whose apex was behind my eyes some distance. With some mild concentration, I was able to control the weaving of the tunnel in order to try and stabilise it to see through it. I had the impression that I was traveling through it as soon as I stabilised a certain portion, and the colours which had started immediately as yellow-white, started to fad into pink-to-rose-to-redish. It was like the light was white, but the outer limits of the light were shining in a redish tint.
As my thought moved through this sort of tunnel that was spinning and still weaving, I heard the voices. I also felt them to my left and right around the ring of the 'tunnel' which I now realised resembled less of a structure, and was more or less made up of infinite amounts of cloud-like vapors that were unique but not touching each other. I remember the start of a conversation with many of these voices, which also relays my personality in such situations, as I am always the person in the room that thinks I've gone to the wrong place. I had that same feeling while doing this entire movement, which happened both very quickly, but also seemed like it took hours. The evidence of time removed, there was no real discerning relationship to judge the passing of moments, and so things happened both immediately and over long journeys within the same paradoxical context. I'm fairly certain this was an extra-bodily journey to the place where we all go when we die, although if you're reading this, you have to realise that I can only describe things in the context of my own personal thoughts and memories, and so I have the feeling that it may be extremely personal and perhaps even unique.
I'm unable to recall what I spoke of whilst arriving at a place that I can't quite remember, however I remember that something happened. After sleeping last night and waking this morning, I'm personally convinced that I saw things which may have compromised my time within this reality, and have therefore purposely given up the memories. The next thing I remember is calling for Digi as I was freezing cold, and asking for her to come into bed with me, and warm me. She lay still next to me, as I then controlled myself in a way very similar to exercises of transcendental meditation, and I was able to do many very extreme and difficult things while being perceived by Digi as being in a completely meditative state. I then was able to see us laying in the bedroom from above, with the walls of my building translucent, and had a similar feeling of points on a graph, but much less intense, and much more like I see when meditating during a very intense session. It felt like a cheater's way to have an extremely intense meditation session with relatively little pre-defined perspective issues, as the neutrality of the experience continued. Throughout, there was a strong element and feeling of dependence and respect for natural things, especially plant-life. The overwhelming feeling of which is still with me 24 hours later, and has started to convince me to change certain aspects of my life in order to be within accordance for such feelings.
After re-reading what I've written, it sounds quite hysterical, although I still haven't even begun to touch on how emotionally complex it was. I also have to mention my inability to find the proper words today. I would have to assign that to the after-effects of the experience.
I would warn anyone against using this without a clear feeling on the proposal of dying, as the first intense reaction would seem to be the consciousness being forcefully removed from the body. I had thought it would be like a meditation session, but that comes with will and intense desire, and this happens instantaneously, and without regard to the willingness of the participant, excepting the initial smoking of the plant, lol... I did have that panic feeling, whereby all thoughts suddenly seemed insignificant, and ideas were all completely singular, rather than having some sort of attachment to any person or being. The neutrality of the experience after that initial ripping through of the id and ego is vital, and I'm not sure how I would have handled this had I been younger or less apt to try such things personally...
I had heard this was very similar to DMT, but after doing both, I have to say that this was much more personal, whereas DMT was more like a fairy-tale dream that happened with less constraint to the personal struggle of life, and more of a lucid dreaming while being awake. Salvia has affected me in such a way that I feel reverent towards my experience. It could just be the difference in my life, however, as I am much more comfortable with who and what I am now, than I was with DMT...
In fact, I have realised only this morning that I smoked only 3/4 of one dose, but still felt mostly a full-effect. I wonder if I would even have the waves of consciousness with having smoked a full dose. The amount of smoke in my lungs was only about 30-40% of a full deep breath, and the leaves burned extremely quickly, much different than weed...
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