Citation: Hypersphere. "The Gentle Empathogen: An Experience with 2C-I & Cannabis (exp83378)". Erowid.org. Jun 24, 2010. erowid.org/exp/83378
||(powder / crystals)
| T+ 7:00
Background: I am male, at the time of this experience 23 years old and weighing around 125 pounds. I take no prescription or OTC medications but use marijuana and yerba mate on a daily basis. I am experienced with most commonly available psychedelics. I had been experimenting extensively with 2C-I for about a year before this experience, at doses ranging from 5 to 30 milligrams. I found it to be a very gentle, friendly substance with a nice balance of psychedelic and empathogenic qualities.
For me, a 5 milligram dose gave a Shulgin + (threshold) and I could easily carry on any normal activity at this dose level, noticing mostly a heightening of all senses and a bit of a “smart-pill” effect. At 10 milligrams, the effects reached a light Shulgin ++ and I could begin to get a feeling of the substance. At 15 milligrams a stronger ++ would be achieved, and at 20 milligrams I would sometimes stray into +++ territory.
My usual dose was 20 milligrams, as I found this a very comfortable level for mind and body. At 20 milligrams, I would have an alert at around 20 minutes, but not feel much else until around an hour after ingestion. Then the psychedelic effects would begin to manifest, building slowly to a peak around 2.5-3 hours into the experience. I would then gently come down over the next 5.5-6 hours, giving the experience as a whole a duration of eight or nine hours. At 20 milligrams, there was very little body load. Sometimes a bit of an anxious, stimulated feeling while coming up, and occasionally a twinge of nausea. Other than this, I would sometimes notice a bit of a phlegmy feeling in the back of my throat. But overall, at 20 milligrams 2C-I was for me very gentle and comfortable.
I had experimented a couple times with 30 milligram doses of 2C-I. This dose level would take me further in than 20 milligrams, to a solid +++ experience. Also the body load that I noticed at 20 milligrams would become more prominent. Some nausea while coming up was to be expected, and could be warded off with a puff or two of ganja. The phlegm production in my throat became much stronger, and sometimes it would make me cough. Smoking marijuana during the peak of the trip was something I avoided, because it would make me cough so much. I only smoked while coming up, and coming down.
Compared to mushrooms or LSD, I found the 2C-I experience was much more subtle and controllable throughout. The experience was less chaotic. I found there was a warm, heart-opening empathogenic quality to the 2C-I which could be compared to MDMA, except that 2C-I is in no way pushy feeling or strongly stimulating like MDMA. On the contrary, 2C-I always makes me feel very relaxed and dreamy, and I tend to spend a lot of time just lounging around under its influence. There is a heightening of all senses in a beautiful way, with unique effects on sound, touch, taste and colourful visual effects.
Set and Setting: Today I was going to be taking a 40 milligram dose of 2C-I, the highest I had ever taken. I had the house to myself so I was in a comfortable setting, and was excited to see the differences between 30 and 40 milligrams. I hoped to get a deeper state of psychedelia, but also hoped that the body load would not get significantly worse. Although 40 milligrams was higher than the recommended doses, I had several friends who had taken the dosage as high as 80 milligrams and enjoyed their experiences, so I was not worried about taking such a high dose.
The experience: I felt an alert after only 10 minutes, which is the fastest I have ever felt an alert from 2C-I. I spent the initial comeup doing a little bit of yoga followed by some chakra meditation using crystals. Deeply emotionally opening. Lots of chi energy. Focused on heart, third eye and sacral chakras. I feel I am trying to get myself back in tune, that the energy comes out too strong, a jittery vibration, because it is blocked elsewhere. I had to consciously RELAX and LET GO in order to let my chakras open, particularly the third eye which would close shut if I started thinking about it.
One hour into the experience I was already heavily effected, whereas at a 20 milligram dose I would just be starting to feel the effects after an hour. For the duration of the peak, which lasted until about the seventh hour, I spent lying down. The speed and intensity of onset were definitely greater than a 20-30 mg dose. With a quartz crystal on my third eye I had some moments of intense activation where I lost sense of my body except the blazing third eye which sort of sucked me out into the external, egoless existence. I was able to maintain this egoless state for awhile and waves of cosmic bliss kept building and building, till I lost it. My ego clamped down and the third eye shut again, perhaps out of a fear of what would happen if the ego-disintegration continued, as it was very intense.
I noticed strong physical side effects at this dose. There was increased mucous production in my nose and throat leading to a constant post-nasal drip and corresponding coughing reflex. I experienced nausea triggered specifically by the coughing reflex. I experienced dizziness unless lying down. I had a mild tension headache faded in and out occasionally, as well as some jaw clenching. My muscles felt tight and a little strained as I stretched myself into strange and exotic positions, writhing around in a state of psychedelic ecstasy.
As for the mental effects, I was definitely at a strong plus three psychedelic experience, but it was still not a fully immersive experience like 3.5 grams of mushrooms would be. Rather than freely drifting bodyless and egoless in the imagination like I do on mushrooms, the 2C-I is a dreamy and cloudy delving through emotional states. There’s a philosophical bent to my thought patterns, but lacking the harsh depressing reality that mushrooms sometimes take on. The experience is one of comfortable contentment.
This level seemed very therapeutic and healing despite still not immersing me totally in profound psychedelic mind games. I maintained a level of lucidity and awareness as I worked through and thought about some personal and emotional issues. I think this compound would be useful in a psychotherapeutic context. I kept bringing up all these worries and causes of stress in my life, jobs, money, living situations, war and capitalism. The overwhelming message I kept getting was “You have to let it all go”. Let go of all the stress and worry, this daily grinding burden we live under without knowing the height of our load.
We always have numerous stress feedback loops running on a daily basis. Getting that big report done. Making enough money to pay the rent and buy groceries. We are never stress free, we just tend to turn over our stresses from week to week, month to month, year to year. All this stress keeps me downtrodden and in poorer health than I would be otherwise. I was seeing just how much of a burden of stress I am under, and how to let go of it all if only for a few hours. To realize that most of my stressors I don’t need to worry about. Just live each day, each moment, as best I can and the future will take care of itself. Worrying about the future too much is an impediment to contentment and happiness. Not that I shouldn’t worry about the future at all, but sometimes I need a break from that worry.
I tripped heavily till about the seventh hour and then began to come down. Still very stimulated and awake, I read a little although my concentration was poor. Feeling contented and satisfied with the experience. A little nagging jaw clenching, tension in the head, soar muscles (from writhing ecstatically earlier in the trip!) and some residual dizzyness kept me in bed till around the tenth hour. I got up, drank some yerba mate and ate a little cantaloupe, then enjoyed a joint outside in the early morning sunshine. The increased mucous production that 2C-I causes was still in effect, and I coughed a lot because of it while smoking that joint.
As the joint was finished, I noticed that I had ascended back to a decent psychedelic state. All the dying plants and fallen leaves glowed with an intense brilliance in the early morning sun. Strangely beautiful and peaceful, sitting here with the hum of traffic in the background. A softened sheen and intensified colours that I love about 2C-I was present in force. After the joint I was feeling very peaceful, content, relaxed, and dozed around in bed for a few more hours, catching a bit of sleep sometime after the 12th hour.
I came out of this experience with a renewed respect for the therapeutic potential of this compound. It is very gentle, very forgiving, and not too hard on the body even at high doses. It is not overly disorienting and coherent thought processes are left intact. There is a subtle but real sense of being pushed in various directions by the drug which has some kind of agenda of things you should see. The 2C-I molecules float through my brain like a kindly physician examining me, touching my body and soul in just the right places to promote healing and understanding.
I noticed deep emotional openness with a strong sexual energy also. I think this compound is one of the best aphrodisiac’s around, I would love to share it with someone of the opposite sex. I felt that everything came down to love, that love should be encouraged and not supressed or diverted whenever possible. I could imagine having sex as an expression of love, but of being open to multiple partners.
Following a theme I’ve thought a lot about over the years, is monogamy a preferential or desirable relationship for me? Certainly in the past I felt with Sarah [my ex-partner], that if she became emotionally or sexually involved with anyone else I would have had a big problem. But I think that stemmed a lot from my insecurity about our relationship, and our poor communication. Open communication, open love. Two people can be in a committed, long-term relationship and still have occasional sexual encounters with others, as long as it is openly and freely communicated that the other sexual partners do not interfere with the relationship they have with their life-partner.
In its purest form sex is an expression of love, of caring and compassion and empathy with the other person, and that is something I would share with many of my friends. This is an idea that I go back and forth on a lot. Monogamy seems a product of the desire to OWN someone else, or concerns over paternity in a competitive paternalistic society, or some kind of sick emotional drama that we play to stroke our egos, to ensure that there is someone who loves us totally and will do anything for us (often we don’t even love ourselves this way!). I personally feel more comfortable in a monogamous relationship, but I also believe this is largely an extent of my cultural conditioning and the expectations of society.
Had I grown up in a radically different culture where in a sort of Brave New World way “everybody belongs to everybody else” and there were not these sexual taboos, that society would as a consequence become more communal, matriarchal, and there would be a great deal more love and a lot less jealousy and sexual frustration. I would like to live in such a world, where it is natural and acceptable to form long term loving relationships but also natural and acceptable to share the sacred act of sex with other people we love, without jeopardizing our long-term relationship. This would be a liberation from sexual bondage that I feel would make us freer humans.
The main messages I got from this experience were the value of clear communication, and to approach others with as much love and compassion and empathy as I can. Walk my path of heart.
In conclusion, I find 2C-I a very gentle and therapeutic compound. The effects of a forty milligram dose had significantly more body load for me than at a twenty or thirty milligram dose. The effects came on faster and the duration of the trip was lengthened to around twelve hours. Due to the increase in body load with only a moderate increase in mental effects, I do not intend on taking the dose of 2C-I this high again. Thirty milligrams is a reasonably comfortable high dose for me, finding the balance point between having a deep experience and having the body load increase. I found the body load at forty milligrams a little too much for comfort. In the name of rationing a material I may never have another chance to obtain, I would rather have two twenty milligram experiences of lesser intensity than a single, high dose.
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