ExperiencesSalvia Divinorum
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what trees see

Here is a description of when I first met salvia. At the time I was a 29 year old psychedelics graduate, I felt I had learned all I could from them. My friend Jacob told me about this stuff that he picked up at an ayahuasca conference and asked if I wanted to try some. He described his experience but it seemed vague and made no sense to me, something about the honda icon from his steering wheel being in his forehead, folding in on itself. (in retrospect I understand what he was talking about.) For a couple of weeks he asked me if I wanted to try it but finally one day, during a break from recording music I asked if he had any of the sage that he told me about. He did and soon we were packing what would later be known as the salvia bong. He told me to take as large of a hit as I could and hold it in. Within moments I began to feel something strange happening. I had a distinct feeling of deja vu, and felt an intangible but intense amazement, but I couldn't seem to formulate what was amazing about it. I looked down at the quilt on my bed and for some reason it seemed totally unbelievable the way all the shapes came together. At the same time it looked perfectly normal. It was as if the 2 dimensional nature of the quilt, represented in a 3 dimensional form perfectly summed up the experience. This is an afterthought, though. At the time I had no idea why it seemed so amazing. I said "NO WAY!!" a couple of times and looked at Jocob. He just nodded back at me and grinned, as if to say, "yes, way". The experience was over in about 5 minutes. Next I sat with him while he went on his journey. After that I decided to try again, this time taking two large hits. I began to look around the room, and suddenly felt that the entire room was slowly creeping, feeding into the left side of my body. I could physically feel the room morphing into me. The lines of the room from where the ceiling meets the walls and the walls meet the floor seemed to conduct energy that I could see and feel. It was all going in a counterclockwise direction into me. What alarmed me was that the energy didn't seem to be coming back out the other side, creating a weird folded perception. I felt like if it continued I would become the entire room. Then I realized that I had seen energy move like that before, during an LSD trip from several years before. As the memory of the trip came back to me, it felt as if I had been transported in time and space back to that trip. I could lucidly navigate all the thoughts from that night. Yet I could also clearly percieve being in my bedroom and aware of having smoked salvia. During the LSD trip I had a very powerful experience while I was lying on the floor. I heard the sound of someone or something's breathing behind me, just above my head. When I looked nothing was there. It increased and I could actually feel the air blowing in and out of the top of my head. I moved my hand up there and felt the air as it went in and out of my skull, even making my hair stand on end as it went out. Then I figured out that the breathing was synchronized with my friend Mark who was lying in his bed in a meditational trance (no LSD). This realization frightened me beyond belief. As I revisited this experience on salvia, however, I was not scared at all. I understood that the experience was meant to be. This was a huge revelation to me as I watched the room continue to bleed into me. When I came back from that one I had a lot to talk about with Jacob. I told him that I felt that salvia wanted to be experienced outdoors. I felt that the energy was 'trapped' inside. This agrees with the philosophy I had learned from a Lakota Medicine guide. He said that westerners built cube like living strucures which were an improper way for harnessing energy. After a couple of hours we went into my backyard and sat at the picnic bench. This would prove to be the peak experience of the evening. I took an even larger dose this time, maybe three large tokes. As soon as I felt the oncoming effect the large oak tree in my yard called out to me. It was as if it communicated directly with my body, because I observed my body go directly to the tree without any concious will of my own. I understood the intent though. With my back against the trunk, everything in my visual field, by conciousness of a body and everthing else simply absorbed into the tree. I could see a million directions at once, yet all I could see were the various details of the tree itself. There was no background, no sky, etc. but I could percieve every detail of the tree, inside and out simultaneously, and it didn't even overwhelm me. That is, not until I began to come back. Most people have heard the term come down but I literally felt as if my being were being scrunched back down into the shape of my body. As this was going on, I began to percieve the "horizon" of the tree, that is, all that existed beyond it's outline. That is when the visionary aspect became overwhelming. For a brief moment I a foot in each world and remembered percieving with totality, and watched as it faded away and the rest of the world beyond the tree came back into perception bit by tiny bit. It looked a little bit like, you know when a dvd is scratched and the picture gets all weird for a moment and then puts itself back together, only in slow motion. This experience also had certain connections to a previous LSD experience, but felt in a very differnt manner. Afterward I kept trying to figure out why salvia kept trying to show me trips from my past. Time certainly takes on new definitions during the experience with salvia. For a few weeks after all this I felt that I was profoundly changed and felt a deep respect and joy towards all life. I am thankful to the spirit of the salvia plant for sharing in her bizarre wisdom and reminding me of the sanctity of life.

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