This morning at 8am I found myself sitting on my sofa, with my headphones on, listening to music. I had no memory of what had occured during the previous 24 hours. I was feeling fine, if a little hungry. But I was very confused.
It’s now 10am. It’s taken me a couple of hours to piece together what happened yesterday. I took quite a lot of temazepam during the afternoon, which was dumb and kind of screwed with my memory. But the really interesting part took place later on.
You probably haven’t heard of Ayahuasca. It’s a psychedelic drink used as a sacrament in some South American religions, especially in shamanistic practices. The plants used in it vary dramatically, but generally there’s a plant that contains DMT (N,N-dimethyltryptamine) and a plant that contains harmaline, which is a natural mono-amine oxidase inhibitor. Without harmaline or another MAOI, the DMT is quickly metabolised into inactive compounds by the liver. With it, the DMT hangs around for a few hours and produces all kinds of visions and hallucinations.
I’ve had the ingredients for my own ayahuasca recipe hanging around for the last year or so. Last night I finally brewed some up. This took a while, but turned out to be pleasingly simple. I took some harmaline that I’d previously extracted from some Syrian Rue seeds. And half an hour later, I chugged down half a mug full of DMT laden tea.
I began to feel the first effects about half an hour later. Another half an hour and I was experiencing the most intense visual hallucinations I can imagine. Beautiful crystalline visions. Like nothing I’ve ever seen before.
Let me put it this way: DMT. Is. Fucking. Insane. But there was also something very spiritual about it. As utterly alien and transformed as the drug made my consciousness, it also kept me safe through the whole thing. It’s going to take me a while to integrate the experience back into my everyday mind. Reality was completely shattered.
There’s still some subtle visual effects going on. Everything seems slightly strange. But in a good way. It sounds dumb, especially since I’m an atheist, but somehow I feel blessed.