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An Ugly Lovely Life

I’ll begin my story by introducing myself. My name is Adrian Bennet, I am 46 years old and have been married to my wife Liz for 22 years. We have 3 wonderful children Keziah 11, Ella 9 and Zain 4 months. My wife and I have had many career paths in life and refer to ourselves as autodidacts. We are co-directors of a family business that developes and provides CBD and medicinal mushroom based products, here in Swansea, Wales UK.

Although I wouldn’t have known it as such then, the first experience that I later perceived as psychedelic occurred in my adolescence. There had been a major breakdown in my family when I was 7 years old and shortly after I became the subject of traumatic physical and emotional abuse.  Around the age of 9 or 10, after particularly traumatic family events, I would “wake up” around 3 A.M., but somehow I would not be entirely awake, I would be somewhere else completely, physically conscious but in another world completely, being chased and attacked by the most grotesque caricatures. My very young parents would try to hit me to wake me up, but to no avail. Home became a place of distrust and fear. At the age of 10,  I found myself at the local mental asylum having brain scans and then would spend the next two weeks picking the electrode glue out of my long blond hair while in school. They could find nothing wrong with me.  

As I grew older, I began to leave the house via the window when I felt these episodes coming on and would find myself running and screaming through the streets of our small mining village of Felinfoel, while being attacked by saucers, lasers, monsters and the like. I would run for what seemed like an eternity only to find myself coming around in my underwear 30 minutes or so later with the socks on my feet worn through to my skin. I had no clue about what this could be until around 2 years ago, but I’ll get to that later.

As the abuse continued, I rebelled and became adept in the art of enduring pain. It was normal to hit your kids back then so I said nothing of what was happening. Despite the abuse, I was a caring, empathetic kid, which perhaps originated from a deep seated need to find my own source of love and thus I began to remove all boundaries in the hope of love coming in from the outside. Regular schools couldn’t control my outbursts and so from the ages of 12 to 16 I was placed into the welfare/foster care system. I had an ability to just ace an exam without looking at the subject matter until just before taking it. The answers appeared as ‘pictures’ in my mind and therefore I could never show how I worked things out. Since this was incomprehensible to my teachers, they would accuse me of cheating and would beat me as punishment. I couldn’t win. I now know that this is a symptom of ADHD disorder, and rather than seeing this as a disorder, I prefer to see a beautiful mind, ultimately creative if it’s allowed to express itself.  We are IT!

I spent four years in that state boarding school for the “maladjusted,” as it was referred to then, a school filled with a plethora of children in different states of disrepair. Upon leaving this place, I went into the Royal Navy and six months later was honourably discharged on medical grounds. So, by the time I was 16 ½ I found myself on the streets, shooting intravenously all the barbiturates, speed and you name it that I could find. It led me to prison many times, and “killed” me 3 times. Thankfully, the universe had other plans.

At 22 I became a religious person and was “born again” for the next 20 years. I put my head down and played the good lad. My wife and I went to around four different churches  over the years, but I attended, many, many more on my own in that time. We were so dissatisfied with those that we even started our own church, which survives to this day. Through these years, we also built businesses for us and they afforded us a comfortable lifestyle filled with cars and houses, but despite all this we still felt empty and unfulfilled. While in the church, I wasn’t allowed to express my utter disillusionment with Christianity, its church and with the way I’d been paraded around by Christians as a poster boy for the war on drugs. My disillusion turned into clinical depression and my daily routine was to find reasons not to kill myself, hence the reckless way I spent money as a compensation. To top it off, most Sundays I’d have to put on my suit and speak at this church or that youth camp and the like, while never quite getting the message.

Enough was enough and I decided to end my life.   To this day I can’t explain how I was stopped, but I was and it was like a switch had been flicked. I was on the back end of four hard years of doing iron men triathlons, running a successful construction company, frequently drinking myself into oblivion and still trying to be my best self for my wife and daughters. Even I could see this was unsustainable, so I began to see a therapist (whom I still see) who through Gestalt therapy was finally able to get me to open up for the first time. I had thought the love between my wife and I was gone and we needed to save our marriage, but what I realized was it was my love for myself that needed saving and capturing. It got darker and darker for me as I began to unwind.

I found cannabis helped me to climb out of this, particularly CBD which helped me so much that I eventually found myself living and working on a cannabis farm in southern Oregon. I would work for two weeks at a time here and there and sometimes on a monthly basis, and began setting up our little business. Along the way, I heard about DMT and the thought of it fucking terrified me. Then I heard about ayahuasca, and I couldn’t imagine being in that state for 8-10 hours. No way!! But it got my attention, as did Dr Rick Strassman and his books. I began to see there might be a correlation between my childhood waking night terrors and these experiences. I emailed Dr Strassman and to my surprise he replied within minutes and we conversed over the course of a half dozen messages. It was a great moment for me. He was lovely and very to the point. His advice in the end was “do your own research,” which I did. I really, really did. 

I first heard of these plants and medicines in October of 2018 and by March of 2019, I’d soaked myself in research. All the books and podcasts I could devour.  All the music that would feed my soul. It was like I was being called, I couldn’t explain it. I knew I just had to do this and with the research I lost my fear. I’d lived with that shit all my life. It was an old friend by now and I’d come to learn that there are no bad or good feelings, just feelings and I needed to view them for myself in whatever fashion pacha mama had in store for me. 

So, I took the plunge. I booked a stay at a temple deep in the Amazon jungles of Peru and prepared to partake in seven ayahuasca ceremonies spread over 11 days. I studied more and more writings, I followed the guidance to eat better and generally tried to do all the things they ask of you. What’s the point in going somewhere to experience their expertise and not following the protocol? Makes no sense to me. It never has. I was all in. So, I booked my flights to London then Madrid then Lima to Iquitos and finally found myself deep in the lower Amazon in a longboat with 22 strangers, all bound for the same journey.  Once we arrived at the temple, we were looked after by Shipibo tribal folk and 6 shaman.

When I look back it now, it has to be the plant calling me. There is no doubt in my soul. That’s my perception anyway.

I was carrying a lot of trauma into the ceremonial setting and some would call it a severe case of PTSD.  When I arrived in Iquitos, I thought even my kids didn’t love me. I felt totally alone in this world. I had fallen completely out of love with myself as well.  This is how I began my first ayahuasca journey. I was knocked out like someone had given me an anesthetic, but weirdly I felt ‘operated on’ when I woke. An odd feeling pervaded me all the next day and despite my worry that this wasn’t going to work, I dug deep and continued my preparations for the next session. Oh, how naïve I was. The second night was when the medicine took hold of me and it was mind altering.

The journey began with me drinking a much larger dose of ayahuasca than I was allowed to drink on my first night. It was a rule of the temple. They had their reasons and  there is no doubt to me that these human beings know exactly what they are doing. After imbibing, I went back to my space on my mat and as I lay there, I began to feel this seething, white hot emotion that was impossible to keep in. I started to weep bitterly and the agonizing knot that formed in the pit of my stomach was ugly. It takes a lot to make me vomit, but this feeling was so overpowering that it was too much to bear. I broke, calling Publio (my facilitator and now close friend) over to ask, “What is happening to me? Hold me.” I was utterly terrified and felt like I was literally falling apart as a human.  All he did was smile, that beautiful smile of his and say, “Oh, Adrian” while stroking my head until I purged on his lap, soaking his clothes with the hottest tears I’ve ever leaked. Then the maestro Shamen, six in all, came in singing their Icaros and it was the most eternal sound I’d ever heard. 

A sudden peace came over me, like somebody literally hugged me and laid me down, assuring me “you’re here now, you’re in it, it’s too late to go back, just accept this.” and I did. I lay there staring up into what I can only describe as a cosmological nightmare, with crazy stuff, lots of stuff from which I kept recoiling. Then I heard a voice speak to me without making a sound and it said, “Adrian, why do you always expect all the beauty in your life to come to an end and when it does, you do that? Now look up, it’s beautiful, nothing can hurt you here, LOOK!”   When I looked, I was no more, I was nothing and everything. It was just the most unexplainable view. There was this eternal Forever rock formation crossed with an octopus’ body, nothing had size, it just was, and as I stared bodiless, ripped from who I thought I was, this eye just filled my vision with a blues blue, crystalline colour and it just opened up and communicated to me, “I SEE YOU, YOU NO LONGER NEED TO BE SEEN.” The visuals were so profound and the message so deep, it all made sense in a heartbeat. I don’t remember much after that except landing safely again. I knew my mask had been ripped away and I cried and cried, stopping only to  sit up every time a shaman came to my mat to sing in my face. They needed us to sit up so they could see all the trauma in you and I’d challenge anyone that said they couldn’t. At least once or twice every evening a shaman would suck something from the top of my head and I’d collapse into a heap while the shaman would proceed to vomit into his or her bowl.  Whenever I opened my eyes in this state, the maestros seemed to be in the vision with me. Now it was exactly what I thought it would be: magic, black, white, blue, pink, who gave a fuck, these people were helping to heal 23 westerners and it was working. I video blogged every evening, to make sure I remembered what I had learned, and while some are still a little difficult to watch, the one I made after this evening was especially so.  

Each ceremony peeled a layer of myself away that I’d been holding onto as security and once the veil was dropped,  I saw the beauty in myself and in everyone around me.  The connection was otherworldly.

There was an evening toward the end, the sixth ceremony in fact, where all my passive rage and pent up emotions came to the surface and the medicine took me on a ride I’d never expected. It began during the day, where for some reason, people began to say weird, unpleasant things to me. I arrived at the ceremony really confused, and while we weren’t supposed to vent on anyone, for some reason that day people did. It was odd at the time, but in hindsight it wasn’t anything new, it wasn’t good or bad, it was just interactions and this day was my day to realize once again how naïve I’d been. 

Up until this point, I’d done five ceremonies, and they had been all gentle and namaste. I remember actually saying to my now great friend Farid, that I didn’t think I needed the last two ceremonies, I was ready to leave. As a result, I arrived angry as fuck.  Sitting in between the two people that I felt most aggrieved by, I blindly smashed as much medicine as I could into my mouth. I was angry, in a “Fuckin come on then!” sort of way. What made matters worse was I was now really angry at myself for allowing this to happen. I became really intoxicated and the whole place was going off. This was ceremony number six, so we had 138 experiences between us up to that point, and had 120 Icaros sung to us. My anger took over and I began screaming, “You fuckin pussy, you allow women to walk over you? etc etc etc.” I shook uncontrollably, as if taken over and began to seriously beat my face and body with my fists. I started biting myself and hating how weak I’d been, after all I was a fuckin lion, how dare I be weak? I knocked 3 teeth out, but don’t worry, they were all mine. Of the 23 of us in the temple, I was the only one this was happening to. They told me later, it’s not a regular thing, it’s more my process. I was being shown what I was doing to myself internally while all the while having my ego revealed to me. I was being shown all the women that had hurt me, especially my mother, like a flushing out. The visuals here were fast and hard. Hurtful. Publio was coming over to me, worried and asking me to calm down, but by now I think I realized what was going on. When mother ayahuasca carries you away,  you’re able to almost relax into the terror with a distinct knowledge that it’s all going to be ok, a sort of perception that makes sense to me now. There is this separate connection. I said to Publio, “Don’t worry, it’s my process, this is my cage, I’m a fuckin’ lion Publio, I’m a fucking lion!” And I was. Whether it was the fact that I’m a Leo and I know the lion connection or whatever, I’d become a human lion, beautiful, glistening, golden, powerful. Down on my haunches, growling, snarling, snapping at the air. I was smelling everyone and taking my power back.

Then I remembered a vision I’d had a couple of nights earlier. I was holding my unborn son, Zain, and in a flash it hit me, that was you Ade. That was the inner child you came here to find. You expected to find a 7 year old boy, but this was a beautiful Gollum, silver, unborn baby with blue black holes for eyes, eyes that had the cosmos beyond them. I stripped myself naked and sat there nursing myself like a mad man. I just couldn’t bring the vision back.  “Why show me this now? Why spoil it?” I thought and I began to aggressively try to go inside myself and fetch him. I felt it was absolutely possible to enter into myself, that I had been completely separated from mind. It was almost controllable, but completely frustrating. I was alternately shouting, then whispering and at one point I let out a roar out that sounded like it came from another world and was so loud JJ the facilitator heard it from 1 km away.   

Within seconds, I was being schooled again by that inner voice. “You can’t swear at a baby, Ade. You can’t talk to yourself like that anymore. It’s what’s going to kill you. This part of you was locked away in the womb. You’ve now lived half a life and this half of you is almost dead. Be nice, be gentle.” Then I was in my arms, me as a baby. I cried, wept mightily and danced with me. It was so special, I’m crying now as I write this. It was a glorious merging of myself. I was dancing in front of the entire Moloka, as naked as the day I was born. I’d had terrible body complex issues all my life but now, nah, no more.  This was a freedom like I’d never thought could exist. Utter and complete abandon. 

At certain points I would see someone that had hurt us/me and they would simply disappear. My vision would get difficult and I was being taught that they could not hurt me anymore. It’s gone, it’s done. It was like I shut a door on all of my past. I was standing on my 2 foot by 6 foot by 2 inch thick mattress, acting out my entire life, past, present and future, and it went dark and closed. I looked the other way and there was a complete garden of hallucinations. I went in and I was seduced by the most beautiful, green, big cats, they just were all over me. Then I was in a golden temple, swirling with colours I’ve never seen before. Jesus was there, along with every god and myth I had ever known, they were in my heart, my stomach… it was a complete destruction of conscious reality. I was exploding into crystalline shards with a myriad of what I can only call colours, but I have no words to do them justice.  It was so loud and yer silent, so big and yet small, all at once: duality had disappeared. I was one with everyone, everything and I knew I’d never be the same again. I collapsed on my matt, exhausted, the reverie had ended but I had yet to return. “Laura is waiting to put you back together, Adrian,” someone said. I knelt in front of this beautiful goddess and she sang the most powerful Icaro. I was beating a drumbeat on the floor and she joined me. This wasn’t practice but we were both in it, together, eternal in that moment. I was a big cat, exerting his power over the woman in front of me. She got it. She felt safe. I placed my ear less than 2 centimeters from her mouth at times, so I could absorb every note of her song into my depths.  I found my arms outstretched involuntarily and two small lights appeared in each hand. As I tried to close my hands together the lights got brighter and it was the hardest physical thing I’d ever had to do. But on I pushed and knew that by closing my hands I would complete the merging. As dramatic and insane as it sounds, it made perfect sense to me in that moment and that’s all that mattered. I closed my hands, screaming “MERGE!” and collapsed.  I was able to lift my head and I saw the a giant and incredibly beautiful lion’s head, its mouth open with rings of light disappearing down its throat and a shadow figure with something under its arm standing in the mouth and looking back at me.  The shadow turned, walked into the mouth and it ended. Exhausted and spent, I lay there naked.  Urias, the head shaman, came and soaked me with liquor from his mouth, spitting it on me as he had during the ceremony. This was a seal from him. It felt that way.  As I drifted into sleep, all I remember thinking was “I knew it would work,” over and over like a mantra. 

I blasted off that night. I was no longer me. I was no longer anything but a kaleidoscope of colours,  explosions of light with an overwhelming connection to spirit. It was silence, but deafening, a sensory experience without my senses. I felt it then and even now I still feel connected to a oneness that we all have together, a oneness separated from us by a huge bridge of the pain and so few of us realize it. Every ayahausca ceremony gave me a three part experience:  the exposure of my ego, a gentle, silent, painful place to view it and almost always, a healing euphoric end. 

My life since (only 8 months ago) has been a revelation. The dynamic with my wife and kids has been transformed. We talk, communicate, love deeply and have so much more collective strength. We had a challenge to respond to in November, when we discovered that Zain was trisomy-21 baby. Our response, as a family unit and individually, has been profoundly different from how it would have been pre-Peru.  I see that self-love is the key if you want to bring about any change in the world.  Self-love is the first step to  change our environment. 

The way I connect with my clients at the dispensary, especially those suffering with mental issues, has been amazing and the there seems to be a conscious community forming. People really are searching. I get paid to do what I love, it is my bliss. We are about to launch a podcast on consciousness and have events in the city planned. It is an exciting time.

The hardest part of the journey so far has been the integration with my life. Coming to terms with my “mutant” state. We have left the church behind, its life, its concepts, its ways of teaching and, if I had to say, its Gnosis. When my veil was taken away it became clear that the Church had collectively messed it up.  I had been part of an organisation that now thinks I’m fucked, a backslider, hell-bound,  seven times worse than when I started. That attitiude has not embittered me, I’m just sad for the blindness I had and for the many friends or mine that remain blind, trapped and hypnotised by it all. It seems so obvious to me now. I love the myth and I can’t reject the construct, but our lives seem to be destined to do some small thing to begin to lift that veil. I still use psychedelics, only from nature and sensibly, I like to think. I microdose with psilocybin in a stack format and will return to ayahuasca again, possibly in the next month or two in a ceremonial setting. Now, I try to have an intention when approaching any psychedelic and I find it very important for me to focus on that. It’s something I work up to and I’m constantly continuing my research. Maintaining my relationship with my therapist has been a great decision, not just for these issues, but because it provides a type of framework for the work we do with patients at the dispensary and guides how we handle their issues and their worst fears. Therapy is good and brave.

I perceive a time of awakening is coming. The one thing psychedelics showed me is that just being alive is the most powerful trip already. As Alan Watts put it, “Am I a psychotic pretending to be sane?” With all our preaching, wrangling, wars, business and our profound amnesia as a species, not one of us really knows what’s going on. But I know, for the first time in this life that I’m enjoying the great dance of the universe. As much as I’d love to move to the forest with my family and never come out, I feel a purpose here. I want to be part of something great, something powerful. For that, I will forever be indebted to the indigenous people of the Shipibo tribe, the Amazon and the entirety of South America for the work they do and the love they show us, despite our horrible history. They are a forgiving people.  IRAKU!   

Lastly, thank you for reading this to the end.  x

Follow Adrian on instagram @the_upper_shroom

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How to Prepare a Therapeutic Psilocybin Experience — Responsibilities

Make sure to have NO Responsibilities during the day of your trip.

Get everything figured out beforehand. Do your homework, write the paper, clean the house. Complete whatever responsibilities you have before tripping.

It can also help to have a couple days of no responsibilities, after your trip, but DEFINITELY NOT any during the day of your trip!

This allows your mind to relax into the moment. It allows you to not be distracted by unfinished tasks.

I’ve tripped the day before going into work, and I’ve tripped with days off after, and I prefer more days off to relax and reflect, but I’ve still had good trips knowing that I work the next day.

But I ALWAYS finish what I need to do before tripping.

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Psilocybin Stories

Spontaneous Solo Psilocybin Trip

I didn’t plan on taking the mushrooms that night. I fell asleep around 9pm and woke up around midnight. I couldn’t sleep, so I decided to take the mushrooms I had, nearly 3.5 grams.

I began with 1 gram, and started feeling the effects after 30-40 minutes. I then took another gram, and then 30 minutes after that I finished it off.

At that point I was feeling pretty great. I was in a state of trust. It was now 1:30am or so, and I was just tripping in my room.

I got on instagram & checked out some psychedelic art photos(and posted them to my story haha). The colors were vibrant. Good vibes for sure.

Then there was a video of a couple whales swimming in the sky, which I thought was fucking awesome. I watched it and it led me to wondering about whales and how they communicate, and that we as humans aren’t the center of the Universe — that we aren’t even the center of this Earth.

Then I went back to looking at psychedelic art, which inspired me to listen to music. I turned on Xavier Rudd. I love his music, especially when I’m tripping. Then I saw a trippy video which make me think of Octopuses and how they communicate. I know that Octopuses are super smart, I wondered what their world is like, and thought about how cool it’d be to communicate with an Octopus.

Then I thought about how Octopuses or other sea animals could be aliens, truly. Haha. It’s possible, but not definite. Just a thought.

Then I looked in the mirror and took some pictures of myself. My pupils were huge! Haha, my eyes were pretty much all black.

At one point in the night I turned off all the lights and laid in darkness for 30 minutes or so, opening and closing my eyes. It was so dark that it didn’t matter whether my eyes were open or closed, all I could see was darkness. I then waved my arms in front of my eyes, it was cool because I couldn’t see my arms at all, even with my eyes open, but I was moving them right in front of my face.

Laying in the darkness also reminded me that I want to get one of those trippy psychedelic light things. Then sometime later I got up and turned one light on. Yea, just one haha.

It may have been around this time, 2-3 hours into the trip, standing in the lit area, where I had a sort of out of body experience. I didn’t feel like “me” in this moment. I felt like I was outside of myself, watching myself, and it felt like that was who my true self is.

Some thoughts of life, death, &humanity went through my mind as well, and the fleetingness of it all sank in. It didn’t bother me though, it was just like a “oh, yea. That’s what this is.” And then I had thoughts about how life will solve itself, even though we humans go around trying to figure it out. I had the thought that we don’t need to do anything, and life will be okay, and that’s true, but since we’re here, we might as well do something. 

And I had the thought that we are all life, whole, one. But we often forget that. It really sank in that yes, life will figure itself out, and that we are life, so we can help ourselves figure ourself out, because it’s going to happen anyway. We’re all one. We are life. Everything is okay.

The idea that life is communicating with us sank in, and again, that life is us…

But yea that it’s always communicating in one way or another. It communicates in symbols.

I thought about how future human societies will most likely be vegan, if we make it that far.

I took pages of notes. On one page I wrote:

“Love=No fear-an absence of fear
= No judgement-an absence of judgement

This can all come down to “No-self” = an absence of self.”

(^I can dive into all this another time, or message me if you want to talk about this stuff)

But yea I thought more about my individual death, the death of me, and what that means. It seems we have a striving to live, but we don’t live forever. It’s hard to fathom living life in a different form whether it’s in the form of another person, animal, or environment, but I think that’s what happens when we die. The individual is gone, but the whole is always here. & that’s who we are, the whole.

Another note I took:

“In The End
it all works out.
So breathe,
don’t worry,
Do what you Love.”

I love many things, especially tripping & experiencing life. No one is completely perfect, but I hope some of what I do helps you and all who read this & takes part in Psilocybin Stories.

Which while tripping I did think of the PsilocybinStories instagram page and decided I want to make it more Nature-like, green vibes, water flowing, mushrooms growing, a growing community, which won’t be perfect as I struggle with trying to make things perfect, but it’s making progress, as we all are in some way.

Speaking of progress, I’d love to do this full-time – be a Psychedelic Investigator, experiencing and researching in the realms of the psychedelic experience.

You can help me do this with a donation, and as a gift I’ll send you my phone notes, about 1,700 words of notes taken during an up&down/heaven&hell kind of trip.

Donate here via PayPal, which also accepts credit & debit cards.

Thank you so much. I look forward to hearing from you and sharing more Psilocybin Stories.

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Psilocybin Stories

Shroomin’ Stan

One of the times I shroomed away, I had a terrible feeling of nauseous. Very common yes, but this time I felt like it was coming out and that I was gonna throw up, although nothing seemed to get past my throat. 

The feeling got uneasier by the second and I didn’t know what to do so I decided to eat a chocolate with pistachio. Stupid decision.

The dryness of my mouth didn’t suit the pistachio pieces and as I gasped for air, some pieces went inside and for a few seconds(which felt like eternity) it blocked my air passage. That was horrible! 

I was gasping for air almost thinking I’m gonna die. Time was too stretched. I panicked.

I’ve always had this phobia of having something stuck in my wind pipe, and then the shroom took me in my throat. It took me to the place where the pistachio was stuck, down my tonsils and in my lungs. 

I felt like I was in the brink of death, any moment and I won’t be able to breathe. I was alone but somehow as I felt like I was dying, I pushed deep from my lungs where I was hallucinating. 

It pushed out the pistachio piece and made me realize that even at the brink of death, we always want to live and we will give in our last energy to that. And I did. 

That trip went rather bizarre. But that journey deep into my own body was something I never experienced before. It eradicated a lot of my phobia. I realized I’m not gonna die from something stuck in my wind pipe. And the fact that I’m scared of it makes it self-fulfilling sometimes.

⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯

This post was written by Chand, @psychedelistan on instagram. Thank you for sharing!

Send your psychedelic story to psilocybinstories@gmail.com!

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Psilocybin Stories

My First Real Trip

Broken down into 3 Sections: Before, During, After. Enjoy the trip.
(Published February 2020)

BEFORE:

College Cafeteria. Sophomore year. Late morning in the late Spring. 2010.

In a booth with plates of food, one of my roommates, and his friend.

Convo. Convo. Convo. Then I hear something like “do you wanna do shrooms with us today?”

I sat in thought for a moment, “can I think about it?”

“We’re getting them in less than an hour so gotta be quick.”

Haha, after eating, we all went back to our dorm. They chatted while I quickly engulfed as much information on mushrooms from google as I could before giving them my reply.

I was both scared and intrigued. From what I read during that time I learned that there was a possibility of having a spiritual awakening, but that there was also a possibility of having a bad trip, and fucking my life up forever.

So, naturally, I said yes.

We each got a cut of shrooms (3.5 grams), but I started with half, to be safe.

DURING:

Chomp. Chomp. Down the hatch.

A lot of people I’ve spoken with do not like the taste of mushrooms, and, understandably so. It doesn’t taste anything like your favorite food, unless your favorite food is dirt.

The taste really depends on what form of psilocybin mushrooms you get. I’ve tried several. Most have tasted Earthy, like dirt, especially the times I ate mushrooms I found in the woods — they looked like the magic kind! I didn’t die, and I don’t even think I tripped those times, unless it’s the permanent kind. So I don’t recommend that, but to each their own.

I’ve also had it dissolved into white chocolate — those ones tasted like a dessert. 

All the stories will be shared in time, but for now, here we are.

The ones we got on this day were gold caps. They looked exactly, 100%, like the shrooms on the cover photo. We had more than that though.

We got a large bag of beef jerky to share with our shrooms, because, you know, we heard they didn’t taste great — I forget if the other two had done them before. I think one had and one hadn’t. I personally didn’t think they tasted as bad as some people say they do, but I still ate some of the beef jerky with those precious gold caps.

How am I feeling at this point? What am I thinking? 

Yea, I was a bit nervous, but also curious, wondering what was to come.

From what I read that day, they don’t kick in until at least 30 minutes to an hour, but I really didn’t know what I was in for. I was still thinking that this could possibly enlighten me, but I also feared having the dreaded bad trip, which I will discuss in my second story, coming soon.

It was a nice day out, so, about 10 minutes after eating the shrooms, we decided we’d walk to a park about a half mile from our dorm. 

—Shining sun, blue skies, a few snow-white clouds, and it was just afternoon now. Month of May, I think.

We conversed as we walked, banter probably. The day was beautiful. We sat down on a dark green bench inside the park and continued chatting. This was about 20-30 minutes in now. I told them I don’t think I was feeling anything, and I think they said the same, so we talked about other things.

One of their friends joined us around that time. I guess he had eaten shrooms too, maybe that’s where they got it from, and he had done it multiple times he said. He told me that I will know when it kicks in…Not too long after, the colors of everything became a little brighter. I wasn’t sure if it was from the sun being so bright, or the shrooms. So I was like “the grass is really green right?” They laughed, and I did too.

Around this time I was thinking — this feels pretty good, maybe this is what shrooms are, and this is pretty cool…I watched a breeze swoop in, moving the grass with it, in what I thought looked harmonious. I was in awe…but soon I found that this was just the tip of the iceberg — but rather than an iceberg, I’d say a blackhole.

15 or so minutes later, one of the guys walked off on his own, sitting down at the base of a large tree. The three of us who were still together continued to talk, then I thought it’d be funny to scare our friend by the tree.

While cautiously stepping through the grass, about halfway there I stepped in a small pile of water (it had rained the day before), and softly, out loud, I was like “Ooohhh shit,” and exactly at that moment I knew, without a doubt, that it hit me. This was it. 

“YOOOOOO!” I yelled over to my two friends.

They’re laughing like “What???”

“I’M TRIPPPPIINNGGGGG!” I said, without a care in the world if anyone else in the park heard. 

The two of them geeked out. I did too. Our friend by the tree just looked over. He seemed a little down. He obviously saw me now, but I still went over to talk with him.

What I was feeling at that time when it hit me, is really hard to explain. It was like I could feel my whole body, simultaneously, everything. I breathed and it was perfect, I don’t know how else to put it, everything was in sync, and everything was beautiful.

The only things I remember talking with my friend about at that moment was the tree, and some ants that were crawling in front of us. We both were in awe of everything. The tree and ant were like family to us in that moment. Nothing had changed in the environment, but everything changed internally, which made us perceive and experience everything in a different way than “normal” life.

I think the other two friends came by shortly after, and we all conversed. Again, I don’t remember what all we talked about, but it was existential for sure.

At one point we thought it could be a good idea for all of us to be on our own for 5 minutes or however long we discussed, so the four of us separated in opposite directions, north, south, east, west. I went in one of those directions, then found a dry spot in the grass to lay down on. 

It was around that time, 30 minutes or so after it hit me initially, that I experienced something different than I was previously experiencing. The state of bliss I had been enjoying turned into a state of loneliness. I sat up, looking at where the others had gone off too. We were all in our own spots. I was thinking I hope we all come back together soon. 

At that moment I wasn’t enjoying the trip, but I found that these intense feelings, strong vibes, come in waves, and a different wave came. I think this one was a pretty good, contemplative state — I had an epiphany or something and really wanted to share it with the others, so I decided to get up and walk over to one of them. Maybe it was selfish. I don’t know, but that’s what I did. They were cool with me telling them whatever had been on my mind. I actually don’t remember what it was, but I bet it was a funny insight.

I had a lot of insights, realizations, epiphanies, that day(to come throughout).

We walked over to the others and we all shared what we were experiencing. Kind of funny right? Just four guys walking around a park, splitting up, coming back together, then talking about what we felt during that time. But that’s how shrooms are, from my experiences — that while on them, you experience things your normal self could never even imagine. 

We walked around the park some more, feeling breezes and watching them orchestrate the grass like it was a band. We were standing on a small grass hill around that time, which was also when I had a peak experience. Answers I had been seeking flooded into me — maybe I was the black hole? Maybe we were all blackholes? 

I wasn’t thinking that^ at the time, but reflecting on it, that’s how it felt for me. Everything made sense in that moment. It was moments of deep, joyful reflections. An internal “Ohhh” about so many things—myself, people, nature, animals, societal norms and structures, time, and even about life itself. Pretty much anything I had ever wondered or worried about, was resolved. And at that time the answers were so much more simple than I was making them to be, or worrying about. I really believe I was experiencing unconditional love, with myself and the Universe. We weren’t separate. There was no “you” and “me,” there wasn’t even an “us,” because it was all so beyond that, beyond any words.  

Later on, probably days or weeks later, I found out that what I experienced was mystical, and that some other names for it are “Cosmic Consciousness,” “Christ Consciousness,” “Transcendental Consciousness,” and I’m sure there are more.

One of the realizations I had during that moment, was that “time” is not actually how I previously thought it was—measured and all that(seconds, minutes, hours, days, etc). I realized that it was so much more than the measurements we’ve given it as humans. “Time” was a construct. One way I’ve described this whole experience to others is that it’s like going back to when you were a child — there’s no labels and words for anything. It just all, is. And it’s all connected. You feel like you’re finally home, on the inside, ya know, because that’s ultimately where we’re all experiencing life from. Both the internal and external fused together.

Back to the park….We would stand at a spot for awhile, all together, then walk to another spot, experiencing, conversing, observing. Now, a couple hours in, I found a Gandalf-like stick in the grass. I was like a child on Christmas when I saw it. To me, it was a sign, and it was a miracle — because for one, there weren’t any white trees in this park. There weren’t any trees anywhere close to where this stick would have come from. So I guess someone must have brought it in and left it there? At a random spot in the park. Or Aliens, like seriously, I don’t know. I do believe in Aliens though.

^&That’s another realization I had — that there are billions and billions of galaxies and stars in this universe. I think it’s highly likely that Aliens exist, and I also recognized that we, the human race, would be considered Aliens to a species from a different planet…So maybe it’s we who are the real Aliens?

So I clearly picked the stick up. Magic. It really did feel surreal. And I showed my friends who, at the time, we were all a little separated, walking around in our own worlds, and the same world.

^Another realization — The truth of Paradox. Basically I saw both sides of many coins, and realized that they were all true. Like just above, we’re all in the same world, but also, we all operate individually within ourselves, our brains, mind, or whatever. Heart too.

Another Paradox — That we are all connected and that we’re all separate. Similar to above. We’re all living individual lives, but beyond who we think we are(which might be ego?), is who we actually are — which is one entity. I’ll relate this one to living in the state you had as a child. There was a time in our lives, when we were really young, that we didn’t separate ourselves from anything. It could have been from our lack of knowledge/education….but it could have been that that is who we are in our purest form? We don’t fear anything. We don’t fear death because we don’t think about it. We’re truly living in the moment, thoughtless, and isn’t that what so many people try to do, or have always been trying to do? — reach that state of bliss, of no thoughts. We see people turn to drugs, alcohol, food, anything to try and get away from “ourselves”(who we think we are) (and yes, psilocybin is considered a drug, but there are things that are legal, like Cigarettes, that are wayyyy worse for our health. — it’s a lack of proper education, and the striving for power, and greed, that keeps drugs like Psilocybin, illegal (although lately more of the masses have been opening up to it — but only because everyone else is…)

^Haha. Would you jump off a bridge if your friend did it?

“No, of course not!”

…But most people are jumping off metaphorical bridges every day. We follow the crowd, the trends, we don’t stand out, because we’re afraid to. I’ve done it and still do it at times, this is usually a very unconscious thing we humans do, but it’s real, and this was clear to me during this experience. I still believe it’s true.

With psilocybin — I’m not saying that everyone should do it. I’m just telling you what I experienced that day, and what I’ve learned from it. Studies are currently being done to learn more about psilocybin and the potential health benefits(mental&other) it provides, at John Hopkins University and other places.

So yea, back to story. I shared my excitement about my newly found Gandalf-stick, and used it as like a hiking stick for the rest of the day. I even brought it to our dorm and kept it there for awhile – weeks or months. I may have gotten rid of it at the end of the semester, or sometime during, I don’t remember, but I did rip off a small piece and still have it to this day.

Also, hours later when we went back to our dorm I showed my other roommates the Gandalf-stick. I clearly remember how I described it too:

“It was just laying there,” throws stick on ground, “like that!”

What made it more funny was that I was completely serious. They laughed and I laughed too.

After:

^I’ll end this soon, but another big thing I took from the trip was to laugh at myself, to not take things too seriously (which I don’t always do! Sometimes I think too much, but I guess at the end of the day I have somewhere inside of me an internal reminder to laugh, and not take myself too seriously).

Life is fleeting, just like that moment. Just like the various moments throughout that day. And the weeks and years that pass by. It’s fleeting. Life is short. It hurts, it does. I think we’re all suffering in some way, but I think if we realized how short and temporary our lives are, in the grand scheme of things, we’d be able to have more fun and do better work. We’d help each other more and worry less. There are beautiful things in this life we experience, but as we age, it’s so easy to see all the bad in the world, and this can, in turn, make us experience “bad” in our lives.

This life is a mystery. I don’t know if it will every really be figured out. I’ve made many mistakes. I think we’ve all made more mistakes than we wish we have, but we only make our lives worse by reliving the past over and over again, or bringing up someone else’s past to make them relive their pain again. 

We’re human. Of course we aren’t perfect. No one is. No one. If you think you are, well, you must be Jesus – please save us all. I’m not. 

We gossip and put others down in a state of fear — Who we think we are, our ego, our selfish drive to look out for “I” and not anyone else, leads us to actually being a bad person – or at least not being helpful. I’m not saying we’re completely bad if we gossip about others, because as much as I try not to, I slip sometimes. Humans are emotional. We’re really driven by emotion, so when we experience states of fear, we might get hyper focused on our lives, and gossip about someone else before someone points the finger at us. It’s a defense mechanism.

^But then at times I wonder if this is a paradox too. I’ve wondered if we, as humans, gossip and talk down on others to actually evolve the human race. This might be a weird thought, but I have it, so I guess this all may be a paradox —that although we most likely know it’s not right to gossip, we still do, and these projections of others’ mistakes and never ours, can possibly inspire those people who are talked badly about, to do and be better, and hopefully it makes the gossiper want to be and do better too. —One problem though is that most gossip is done behind our backs. We complain about people and they complain about us, and we never really find out because everyone is just as fake as we are. Maybe this is the human game? It’s dramatic, that’s for sure.

Maybe one reason why most of the human population isn’t genuinely happy is because we’re so focused on other peoples’ lives(because we’re in constant fear of what other people think of us), so we never end up attending to our own lives. 

There is more to that day that I experienced, but I don’t want to write too much in one post. 

This felt really good to write. It’s been about 10 years and I’ve told maybe a handful of people about this experience, but I’ve never written most of it down like this. I haven’t shared it with more people because of fear, because as much as I believe in love, societal norms are powerful, and as a person with the job I have, doing magic mushrooms and talking about the experience would very likely be frowned upon and could consequence in losing that job, which I love.

So I will remain anonymous for now, but I do want to share more of my psilocybin stories. If you’d like to help me do this full time you can donate here. Thank you for reading, and I’d like to hear your psilocybin and psychedelic experiences as well. We can just talk about it, but I can also share your story if you’d like(anonymously or can link to your site). Email me at psilocybinstories@gmail.com.

I look forward, in hope, to the days psilocybin will be used as a medicine that actually heals us, and doesn’t leave us addicted or taking other medications to counteract the medicine we’re on.

But for now, we play the human game, doing what we can – not just talking about change, but making change, and being okay with doing it imperfectly, and picking ourselves and others back up, in love, when we fall.

Do I wish I was always in that mushroom state of mind?

I’m not sure…because then, well, I don’t know. 

But that’s some of what I experienced that day, and a lot of it has stuck with me.

One last thing for now, I think. Haha. —It’s easy to judge people, which I’ve even done in this post —like judging people for judging, but I think what’s more important is to live our lives in a way where we don’t need to talk, preach, use our words to complain and blame, because we’re too busy living how we all know we should. It is very good to speak out for what you believe in, and to fight for what is right, but try not to solely speak on your beliefs – act on them, and if you’re not acting on what you say you believe in, I encourage you to reflect..On your life, not someone else’s, and to help people rather than try to destroy them with your words – that’s an evil thing to do. We’re all people. We’re all hurting. 

Grace…If we can give ourselves grace for the mistakes we’re not proud of, we can share it with others too. Not because we’ve done anything to deserve it, but because we are one entity. We are together, and I think that as we find ourselves treating people, the environment, animals, everything, with grace, we’ll experience more of it in our lives, and I say this as someone who eats meat and needs to work on sharing grace in all aspects of my life just as much as anyone else, because I often don’t give that grace…talking, not doing. But, it has come into my awareness, so I remind myself of some of these things that flooded into me during that trip, and I take imperfect actions in a state of my beliefs, being okay with doing it imperfectly-because that’s the only way to progress, not just as individuals, but as the whole human race, together.

Balance is essential in doing this, and boundaries, which is another thing we can imperfectly progress toward.

As we focus on our lives let’s not forget the lives of others, and

As we focus on others’ lives, let’s not forget ourselves. 

It’s natural to not want to let other people down, even sometimes when they are toxic to us, because we care about their happiness. Some people are pros at boundaries, and others, like myself, need to work on it.

Clear, honest, real and raw communication may be a starting point.

Be weird. Be patient. Love who you are, and others, as they are.

I hope you experience love, grace, peace, strength, and joy, at a deep level, and embrace pain, uncertainty, doubt, fear, restlessness, worry…Two sides of the same coin, if you think about it. 

Thank you for reading.