Citation: ninpo. "Detailed Analysis of a Mindbending First Trip: An Experience with 2C-I (exp99070)". Erowid.org. Sep 25, 2015. erowid.org/exp/99070
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Method: 3 doses; insufflation [00:00], oral (under tongue[00:30]) + (ingestion[02:00])
Length: 15 hours; 23:30pm? to 15:30pm
Recovery: 5 days + (still somewhat recovering)
Date: 28th December 2012
This is my first and only hallucinogenic experience to date, bar a terrible bout of misplaced anxiety and disgust on synthetic cannabis 'herbal haze'.
[Also, for consideration, I had an immense and life changing sexual experience during this. I won't go into detail of course, but the enhanced vision and mind frames described below helped me view my partner entirely non-aesthetically and take give myself selflessly, it was the most pure and true emotional/sexual experience of my life. Luckily we're extremely good to each other anyway. This was totally impossible in a normal mind state, but just having experienced it has made things better permanently.]
Warning: This is a verbose, long, in-depth, meticulously analysed experience to quite literally the max of my observational abilities psychologically, neurologically, physically, emotionally. It is a concise essay considering how much I could say.
ALSO worth noting; I do not and did not treat this as a recreational endeavor. Don't dose this high for your first experience, and ALWAYS measure out doses clinically. Finally, there is absolutely no romanticism in this account. In fact, it doesn't do the experience much justice.
Drug taken around 12:00am. I spend the first hour preparing for an experience with 'altered and impressionable reality', exploring the full capability of my mind to intimately know myself and flex the capacity for controlling thoughts and anxiety levels while fortifying a good disposition. It is worth noting that this is an important experience that I have held off for a long time for the same reason flying makes me anxious (and probably the same reason I haven't done in 8 years), and consider self control the most important discipline in my life.
After about 30 minutes, I could feel the MDMA-like rush of the drug take hold. The first 3 hours is spent wondering if it is working correctly, enjoying music and good conversation, collectively building up good atmosphere. (I am with 3 other people - A and B who are in a relationship and are experienced with hallucinogens, of which I am good friends, and C who supplied the drug, and is the most experienced with hallucinogens out of us.) For the first two and a half hours, I am entirely coherent and of great spirit with an amphetamine-like rush to my body, only growing more intense. Can feel odd quirks and muscle spasms. Through time I am aware of my consciousness changing subtly. The best description I can give is that while remaining normal aside rising euphoria and body rush, it feels as if though the the parts of the brain which pay primary attention to the current moment were very quietly, slowly rearranging in the background, waiting to make a grand appearance. It's worth noting my stomach acted odd during the come up, and I hadn't eaten in a day. Around the two and a half - 3 hour mark I lose any reliable sense of time, until I can reference the experience to soberiety. Colour slowly becomes more vivid throughout the come up. My mind feels clear and sharp, and my thoughts become more complex as time goes on. I begin to become aware of a hightened sensitivty to a certain spectrum of colours; purples, the warm hues (mainly orange).
Around 03:00 the visual hallucinations start. I feel myself calling for them eagerly, and the main light of the room goes off with a lamp still on in the corner and a monitor bathing the room in light. This kicks the first visuals into effect (there is lots of smoke in the room) and I see iridiscent rainbow smoke trails become their own entity, looping gently around the frame of the bed and sharing a relationship with the already enhanced optical effects of the lighting in the room. I am able to explore this clearly for maybe 20 minutes, peaking emotionally. Vision becomes much higher definition, contrasts and brightness rise and fall periodically, sometimes my vision is hazy and other times much higher definition then normal. Reading text on the monitor really kicks it off, the words being both static and moving in different dimensions of perception - gracefully evaporating and morphing in and out of existence, trading places with each other, communicating. I notice during this stage how the atmosphere of the visual trip changes with changing music. A brief change from Barrington Levy to old Squarepusher instantly intensifies my atmosphere (specifically how dark the room is, and the main momentary colour theme). Throughout the body high switches from amazing to pleasant to amazing, feeling at times like an opiate, satisfying me with deep warm, walking a fine line between pleasure and ache; similar to the comfort when you submit your body to heavy fever though the feelings are not remotely similar. Occasionally skin feels a contact as it does when there is a subtle but cold draft entering a very hot room.
At this point something is wrong with A and A begins to fall into the worst 'ego death' of A's life, and told me later on it was the closest to beholding madness A had ever been, and while A managed to not to fall into some horrific mental vortex it was still a very distressing experience for them. A is fine and recovered after a day or two, but still hasn't spoken about the trip. It quickly infects her other half B, who manages not to lose himself in the bad trip, but certainly has a shitty one. Once shit hits the fan I am aware that my mind will try to spiral into anxiety and worse, and steel myself for what I had been hoping would not happen. For the first 20 or so minutes I reassure and comfort A, even surviving B's statement 'shit just got evil'. I am sitting in the PC chair with the mood heavy, distracting myself with the gentle visuals on the monitor and bob marley, when the 'dark' hits. The lights instantly dim and threaten to go dark, physically my body gets heavier and heavier in the sense of mass, the physical anxiety rising all in unison. Existence resonates in a deep bass that falls deeper, a sound but not to my ears, similar to the sound of some immense piece of machinery powering down in some sci fi. In this very small moment, my mind and the drug threatens to throw my disposition into something unexplainable, dark, horrific. What feels like an unmeasurable void, blindness in all sensory and comprehension languages, total loss of control and submission to my anxious, altered self, a rising doom that threatens to engulf reality. I collect my mind and emotion to the greatest extent of my ability and banish away the moment, and the lights return to normal. The threat of that singularity is such that I leave the room, travel down both floors to the ground and visit the garden.
Just thinking and talking about the experience the next day and as I am writing this, gives me goosebumps, deep shivers and an unshakable essence of doom [three weeks down the line and it's still there]. I am aware of the december temperatures but I know I can allow myself a few minutes to let it become uncomfortable, barefoot. The moon is full, stars are out, there is a healthy breeze and heavy clouds in the distance. I stare at the moon for solace. The senses are greatly heightened, I can see much more in the dark then usual, and what would be mundane indistinguishable colour changes in the sky become apparent. 2C-I definitely hightens my senses on top of making me hallucinate. I am fully aware of reality and all components of the experience throughout. On observations, my mind is greatly pleased that it can behold the sheer volume of my environment - the mind feels intrinsically more agreeable with my senses, the magnitude of space, the stars, the moon, the density of the clouds that I academically know binds to my spatial and peripheral awareness, pushing back what feels like the threshold the mind sets on what it can comprehend with its senses, thus i feel far more physically aware of everything around me. The beauty I could witness was unlike anything experienced by the mind running in balance, visually and spatially.
Throughout, the optical effects of the moons light through atmosphere are accentuated, and the moon is outlined by 3 long, gentle laser blue hexagons that would cut thirds out of the moon if the visual obscured the moons surface, which it did not (that sort of multi-dimentional reality is apparent throughout the trip, comprehending what is normal, dealing with the vast information the heightened senses gives me, dealing with the complex multi-dimentional thought process, while being entirely aware of what is visual hallucination and not.)
The hexagons slowly rotate together and gently morph in and out of the edges of the moon, and I can make out stars I cannot usually see; I recognize more detail in the Auriga constellation to the left of the moon, and Orion to the right.
The whole experience calms the parts of me that threaten to spiral away into negativity, reassures me that I can be calmed and that the psychedelic experience is not in fact a complete relinquishing of reality and more so an augmented and heightened version of, with new relationships formed between existing modes of thought and a powerful relationship between momentary emotion and thought. Throughout the experience so far (and entirely), I am totally clear-minded and coherent, and aware of my own clarity and sharpness. I am constantly in deep, complex thought. Despite the overwhelming shift in information received via senses, awarenesses, and the augmented flavour of the critical, deductive part of my mind, none of these experiences takes away from the other. I realize I am easily beholding the completely alien beauty of my surroundings, regarding the differences between now and sober, comparing my entity while in deep thought and process about multiple subjects at once, while repressing the body high, keeping myself emotionally and mentally in check in regards to what sort of thought patterns my current state was vulnerable to, generally trying to feel out literally every element of the experience.
All this lasts about 5 minutes. A comes to meet me at the stairs on the way back up, she is distressed emotionally but entirely contained, I try to soothe her with words, take her outside to see the moon. She is joined by B and I go up to the room and join C, who is completely unaffected by A & B, in deep analysis of his relative experience. We talk for some time then A&B return, retreating to the bed for the remainder of their bad trip. To make their experience and ours easier, me and C leave for the kitchen, and we talk for maybe 2 hours. The entire conversation was about C's understanding of hallucinogens (it is worth noting C is a third year neuroscience/biochem/neurochem student, intelligent and sharp as a lab scalpel), mainly we talk about all aspects of the spectrum of bad trips you can have from weak to mind bending, the psychological considerations to hallucinogenics etc. A fun conversation, but for the way I work enjoyable and typically painful. He admits that the situation upstairs does not affect him because he has certainly damaged himself in some very small way from continued use of hallucinogens in order to understand them, and congratulates me on having the 'mental fortitude' to not fall into something bad myself, especially as a first trip. No time for pride.
This conversation allows me to really explore the relationships between disposition, reactionary and static emotion, and the thinking part of my mind. I am constantly aware of the danger and presence of spiralling into negativity and fear, never allowing it to happen. There is a massive lag between the rich complexity of thoughts and me being able to vocalize the ideas I am having, which is deeply disappointing and frustrating, but I am aware after a brief moment of confusion that the disappointment is exacerbated by the complexity of thoughts I'm having and not by my actual articulation. The entire length of our conversation, the fabric of the sofa C occupies is constantly morphing, segments switching places and fading in and out of existence.
Such is the spiralling nature of thoughts and greater emotional sensitivity to them, that I do not consider anything in great detail to my immediate thought stream, but there are several more streams of thought more disassociated with my emotions [or the inherent relationship between consciousness and emotion] that continue to regard things concerning the experience. This is a constant throughout the trip, thus the more time passes the more concrete my understanding of the state I am in becomes while never contemplating it on the level that has bonded so closely with my emotions, so the idea of possibly losing control slowly evaporates when accompanied by constant regulation, and this affirmed my wonder at the notion that my mind was behaving so. The physical and mental threat of negativity is still a constant, so you're in an odd state where to manage yourself you're both actively hiding from the subject of negativity while actively existing in, contemplating, learning and exploring it. For example, I was completely aware of what was happening to A & B, very much understood and was contemplating the ramifications of having a bad experience on this stuff, now even more aware of the fragility of the mind and the level of vulnerability you have while on this; yet at the same time I had to be completely unawares of all that, escapist even.
We talk it out and eventually go upstairs to make sure nobody is committing suicide. About 5 hours have gone by, A&B's bad trip has let go of them and they're 'happy to be back to sanity', trying to regain normality by washing away the residual bad with a bit of mind numbing TV. Hilariously they choose Peep Show and start freaking out due to the weirdness of it after 5 minutes. American Dad comes next, and everybody is thankful for a hypnotising distraction (and TV really must fucking zombify because it worked)[I've read TV bringing normality to another 2C-I trip].
I find myself silently but somewhat desperately awaiting sunrise. C, being the boss he is, is happy to leave at 6am to make his way across london in the dark (C has been dosing at regular intervals since 17:00 the day before) and A&B watch the TV until their trip more or less ends. It's worth noting that even though A has taken many hallucinogens including ayahuasca, changa, DMT, acid, shrooms, in standard high dosages, and has had bad trips in the past, A took only a third or less then my dose ( 6-10mg) and stated this was considerably worse then any other trip, but remarked 'thank god it wasn't on acid'. At my equivalent dose, not so sure. This demonstrates the unpredictability of hallucinogens and demerits the notion of dosage and experience being proportionate. Once A is safely out of the experience, she cries a few times, and thanks us for saving her life in regards to being right and managing to act correctly. Then she has to relieve her experience going into great detail, and after about an hour of talking about it I politely ask her to mute the subject as I am still tripping me fucking nuts off. It doesn't bother me too much, but why should I go through more stress? She forgets and raises it a few more times until I remind her again and jokingly (but in all quasi-seriousness) impose a ban on the subject until I am out of my trip.
I watch the sunrise over London from the roof window and take deep joy and solace at enhanced perception of what I consider to be another ultimate beauty sober. Making transit above london are great illuminated collums of cloud, travelling fast but also gently waving, morphing with eachother. The sky is that beautiful early morning pastel dark/light blue, with fading tones of orange-pink-peach.
B forgot he had an unwanted family gathering and attended (ouch), while A falls asleep, and I join my partner who has just awoken. It is roughly 8am. I lie down and begin venting the small amount of information I can on the night so far. Rationally I assume the trip will end soon, but I had no idea how much I consumed and the next 7 hours are spent visually tripping but in an odd state of casuality compared to the previous 8 hours. The cacophony of thoughts I can now behold entirely without experiencing spiralling into negativity; my resolve and strength at this point are absolute; I now feel 'experienced' and intensely proud of myself in respect to understanding and controlling myself throughout the trip. Still, the moment of almost losing myself to it was such a fear motivator, that to be safe I decide not to go into full detail about the experience until the trip is over, despite my minds almost desperation to vent the experience to someone who would care to listen; that I had not a bad trip but merely an immensely stressful one, tells me that a measurable anxiety during the psychedelic may lead to symptoms of PTSD - the experience is so dynamic that this can start before the trip is over. [update - I'm pretty much CERTAIN I could get at least mild PTSD from 2C-I, a few weeks down the line.]
I lay on a mattress that recedes round a corner into a little extra area of the loft conversion for the next 7 hours. It feels the mind does not produce random visuals, but instead is on a overdrive where it is desperate to find patterns, relationships, complex structures and details (both visually and in thought process). To the every day mind this is normal and I think therein lies an explanation to the overwhelming conception and articulation of dynamic, multi-dimentional ideas and thoughts, and must provide some(?) role in the visual trips. The walls, all surfaces 'breathe' - morph in and out of geometry, feeling and appearing soft and organic. The geometric theme of whatever I am seeing, seems to be entirely based around heightened sight, thus in a grainy wall painted white you are far more able to see the actual texture of a surface, and the mind does something to try and make it all visually homogenous, assessing what the deeper character of the pattern is. To try and confirm that idea, I was able to focus on the fibres of my duvet cover, let my mind do what it does, then try to dampen the visual effect to analyse the structure and nature of the trip; patterns were rectangular and iridiscence of the visual seemed to be linked to the enhanced lighting in which I see the fibers. Closed-eye visuals were constant but only became profound if I paid attention to them – fractals and spirals that I could zoom into great detail of, subtle laser geometry.
I smoked some skunk in the last 3 hours, which made the visuals explode – especially the ‘phosphene’ style visuals (ones that seemingly occupy the same visual nature and visual dimension as the colours you get when staring at bright light or pressing the eyes while closed). They were all themed neon weed-green, soft circular patterns similar but more coherent then magnetic field lines, with an uncountable amount of electric red eyes that popped open in my periphery and become vague in my focus.
The psychedelic mind frame is akin to genius madness; expressions of thoughts are ironic, amusing contradictions in nature that work well to describe bar the ability to articulate them. I am capable of thinking in paradoxes that work – ‘the night I fell asleep awake and woke up dreaming.’ Nothing is linear as homogenous thought and considerations are mundane; luckily they are impossible but I can behold all that would be myself. I found that steeling yourself with comfort with yourself and understanding of yourself beforehand and exercised throughout, nullifies the widely reported introspective nature of 2C-I which is perhaps what ultimately saved me from negative reflection. I literally could write another essay trying to describe all of this in more detail, only in vain.
During the times of immense stress I was aware of the fragility of psyche, and aware that the floodgates of stress were dangerous. My mind on this stuff is the same mind as before, just everything intensified. My mind seeks to create more complex structures then before, I feel good when I'm supposed to and feel bad when supposed to, only more sensitive to change than before; I'm intensely vulnerable. Nothing is average – nothing played down by the brain to make way for higher priority processing. The good is euphoric, unparalleled and the bad excruciating, unparalleled likewise. Emotions manifest themselves physically all the same, only much more profoundly. I'm not made larger by the drug but instead magnified; a microcosm exposed in the sense that it brings the every day processes out of lethargy and ambiguity and honestly demonstrates how important things such as emotions and mental states are in the real, slow, long-lasting world by stripping it all of its pretense by sticking it under magnification for a tiny, intense amount of time, like the first time looking at the moon through a telescope as its crescent highlights the battered surface. Anxiety (which was most apparent in physical form on the trip, seemingly) is the downfall of the psychedelic experience and stress the exact same useless thought-spiraling disease it is in every day life – if you’re good at dealing with both and have no deep seated emotional issues that you have left unchecked, hidden, or generally neglected in the ways of being a healthy human being, then it feels you will have an easier time fending off a bad experience if it tries to take you. So if you made it this far...
In conclusion, the past 4 or so hours I spent tripping my face off with an obscene clarity, writhing in agony like I had heroin widthdrawal, constantly moving to distract myself from the overwhelming body high caused by large dosage tainted by the residual anxiety of the trip. This experience alongside research tells me that broadly, less is more with 2C-I and I could probably experience optimal effects at 12-20mg depending. I had truly exhausted all human capacity and begged for the experience to end, still loving it; absolutely fascinated. If the body high were not so it would have been far more bearable, but I was growing tired of what felt like overhanging madness in the form of delirium and sheer mental exhaustion if my mind continued chewing the amount of information it did. I curled fetal into my partners arms and finally, fell unconscious; devastated – traumatized – exhausted, and utterly satisfied by what was the most intense and amongst the most amazing nights of my life.
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