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Lophophora diffusa

From: chris@xs4all.nl (chris)
Newsgroups: alt.drugs
Subject: Re: Lophophora diffusa
Date: 30 Sep 1994 04:27:28 GMT
Message-ID: <36g43g$lc4@news.xs4all.nl>

rbrennan@aol.com (RBrennan) writes:

>O.K. Chris, I found the article; this is the article that identified the
>highest mescaline content in T. pachanoi and they used L. diffusa samples
>as a control to determine the accuracy of their mescaline testing in
>pachanoi.

>The article is "Determination of psychotropic phenylalkylamine derivatives
>in biological matrices by high-performance liquid chromatography with
>photodiode-array detection" by Hans-Jorg Helmlin & Rudolf Brenneisen,
>Journal of Chromatography, 593 (1992) 87-94.

>Direct quote: "The intra-day precision of mescaline in the cactus sample
>material [T. pachanoi] was determined by analyzing a dried and pulverized
>mescaline-free cactus specimen (Lophophora diffusa) spiked with a
>methanolic solution of 1 mg/ml mescaline," emphasis added.

>I'm sure I have other info reinforcing my belief that L. diffusa is
>mescaline-free, if this does not do it for you.

Very good! I have also some stuff that states this. I knew that Lophophora diffusa does not contain mescaline. Which makes it all the more interesting , because L. diffusa is definitively very active as a psychotropic plant. I will hereby present an account of a L. difffusa experience.

In 1978 I undertook a journey to Mexico ( I'm living in Holland). I was 22 years old and had read all of Castaneda's stories to date. Eventually Castaneda turned out to be a fraud, but i was not aware of this at that time. I was a biology student at that time and was doing a minor in Botany. I read a lot of Schultes' stuff and works on ethobotany buy William Emboden. My goal was to collect some of the "lesser known" psychoactive plants from Mexico as mentioned by Emboden, bring 'em home to the lab, fractionate extracts, test the fractions on psychedelicity and discover a new pscychoactive substance.

When in Mexico I aquainted a British botanist who was specializing on cactaceae from Mexico. He was able to point out exact locations to find certain cacti. One of these was L. diffusa. Because of the relative accessibility of the particular spot where this cactus could be found I chose to at least get some specimens of this species. I left on the day before christmas 1978 from Jalapa de Chimenez in the state of Veracruz to the city of Queretaro, 50 miles north of Mexico city, together with another english guy who was in Jalapa teaching english to rich mexicans and reading " waiting for Godot" in the meantime. The last part of the route to pole XX on the road from Queretaro to YY we traveled in the back of an old pickup truck, together with a huge pig and a barrel of gasoline. We got off at pole XX, walked up the hill by the side of the road and there they were: L. diffusa's all over the place. They are very hard to tell apart from real peyotes: there is apparently no difference in appearance: Like peyotes, this cactus has no spines. It defends itself against being eaten by sticking barely out of the ground, the main portion of the cactus being a cone shaped root which is to 6 inches deep into te ground. Like this:

                            (^^^^^^^^^^^)
                 ___________(  L.Diffusa)_________
                              (       )
                Earth          (     )
                                (   )



Another way this species apparently defends itself is its absolutely horrible taste. My friend and I had decided we were going to find out what this cactus was all about. We set up tent in a nearby canyon, made a little fire and sliced about 10 specimens. into "peyote buttons" We tried to chew a button and swallow it, without succes: the taste was so repulsive it was impossible to swallow. Finally, by boiling 20 buttons in aguardiente and swallowing the liquid, we were able to get a fair amount of extract down our throats.

Within 30 minutes my hearing began to change: it was was like every word I or my friend said was pitched down considerably until it sounded like a growling or rumbling. This effect lasted untill well after the actual experience. Afer another 10 minutes I felt catatonic: transfixed in a motionless position. Eventually i probably fell over on my side and lay there, unable to move. I suddenly saw myself walking through the desert, the same we were currently in, until I arrived at a lonely house in the middle of nowhere. I went inside and came into what looked like a doctor's waiting room. Several indians were sitting there, apparently waiting to meet the "doctor". Eventually, it was my turn to enter the doctors office. Behind a desk there was a "man" looking like a giant peyote cactus, all green and with a "crown" like the fluffy rosette on top ofd a peyote. The man spoke, introduced himself as "doctor Roskowski" or something like that. Then he (it?) asked me " what was my reason to come and visit him?" I did not know what to answer and said something like " well, uhuhuhuh , I uuh just took some cactus to see what it was like..." He immediately went furious and made me understand that I was wasting his time and that people came to him for very good reasons, for advice etc. So he ordered someone to kick me out and told me to leave the area immediately. and I was literally kicked out of the house and was back in the desert. I walked through the desert for a long time until i saw my friend walking towards me in the distance. At the moment we were close enough to say "how'ryadoin" I "woke up" and saw my friend standing in front of me. Later he told me he had had exactly the same experience...He was frightened and wanted to leave the spot instantaneously. So we hitched back to Queretaro.

Weird huh? This is a true story! So now about: what is it? L. Diffusa does not contain mescaline, which was obvious during the "trip": there were no bright visuals, nor a "psychedelic" feeling. The whole experience could be compared better to a " delirium" you get from plants like Datura, Belladonna etc., a dreamlike state with very realistic hallucinations, without any profoundness or a lifting of spirits

Lophophora diffusa doescontain several "(tetrahydro)isoquinolines" which could be regarded "mescaline after it reacted to other stuff" with the general structure:

  / \ / \ 
 I   I   I
  \ / \ /N 
       I  \
       R   R


Some names are pellotine, gigantine, anhalonidine, Lophophorine etc whereby the phenolic ring may be substituted with methoxy groups in various arrangements and the R's in the figure above could be methyls or hydrogens.

Now one or a few are definitely very psychoactive, obviously with effects comparable to these above. I never got really into the psychopharmacology of these substances. Back around 1980 very little if anything at all was known (please enlighten me on more recent developments!)

Since these substances are also present in the true peyote, L. williamsii, it is quite likely that they modify a peyote experience considerably, as compared to pure mescaline!!

So again who has ever experience L. diffusa or L. williamsii and wants to share some experiences or other knowledge?

Chris


Originally archived by the Sputnik Drug Information Zone