Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

Saturday Night, Sunday Morning

by rg Sat Sep 30th, 2006 at 08:35:16 PM EST

It's Saturday night, and I have a blanket over my knees.  Radio 3 is talking about an artist.

"They were all abstract paintings; they were all landscapes, but not in the normal sense that we think of them."

The description reminds me of Ivon Hitchens.

This diary, though, is not about Ivon Hitchens, or Radio 3, or feet, or abstract painting.

I've never taken it, but I'm reading an interview with the most famous chemist involved in its manufacture and propagation.


Owsley Stanley (b. Augustus Owsley Stanley III, January 19, 1935) was the first "underground" chemist to mass produce high-quality LSD in the 1960s.

In an interview with Bruce Eisner, he talks about a range of subjects; subjects that have been getting an airing here at European Tribune recently.  'Tis strange.  

Where Do We Come From?

Well, people evolved over millions of years from a very poorly defined animal-- because archeological traces of people are not all that easily discovered--, and no one's really quite sure what the proto-human mammal was like, or what precursor it evolved from. [...]  But I think we've been pretty much like we are today for a very, very long time. A lot longer than most people realize. And our social structures were basically tribal during most of this developmental period. It is the social interaction between people that is the thing which makes us unique. Our social structures, and our methods of learning virtually everything that we use in our behavior, is learned from adults while we are children. That's all very important, and this is one of the things I'm discussing in the little diatribe against children's TV. It's all interrelated, we know we've got something wrong, things are not working right.


We now have a society that's hierarchical. Most of the power is taken away from the people, and it's put in the hands of the few individuals. These individuals form a government. We have over the centuries slowly tried to modify and develop a form of government that was more responsive to the people. Unfortunately, it's always been diverted, it's always been taken over by those who love the power; you know, it's an elitist group. One time this elite group was called princes and dukes and kings. Now the elite group is basically the people with lots of money.

He has things to say and lives "off the energy grid somewhere in Queensland, Australia."  It is said, by unknown people (unknown to me, so I might be making it up or misremembering wildly)...it has been said that Owsley freaked out in the early seventies (may have been the late sixties...), saying that we were all doomed, cataclysms were a-coming, but he'd worked out the perfect place to ride the storm and come out the other side.

Stepping away from that thought and back to the interview.

The Internet

The interesting thing about the Internet is the protocol. The TCP/IP protocol packetizes the information and sends it off through the system without basically having one specific pipeline between the originating and terminating computer, so that it can flow through a network of interconnected computers freely. It seeks the quickest or most direct path. But because of this structure it's impossible to interfere with it. So all the governments that are jumping up and down and passing laws are sort of like the King going down to the beach and commanding the sun to rise, or commanding the tides to go out! They are trying to interfere inappropriately with processes they really have no real way of interfering with.

This is the moment when I recommend the article to you rather than quoting chunks.  And then I quote more chunks.

One of the things the net produces is a situation where you can no longer control what people have to say. The Internet is not a broadcast medium; it's not a medium similar to anything else; it's more like a complicated sort of telephone system. [...]  Nobody can really broadcast, although they're trying to fix that, its called "push technology," and is another thing I think is an aberration. It's not in the spirit of things. The point there is that people anywhere in the world can access anyone else's opinion they wish, and read the postings freely, is a forum that will absolutely spell the end of tyranny.


The individual who seeks government usually is in a system that allows people to be reelected and often, in fact, gives them generous retirement benefits at the end of a certain number of years of service. This induces people to become professionals, professional politicians. Their true profession, however, is getting elected, and then retain the office, so their most important skills are solely to be elected and to remain in office. Their skills involve manipulating public opinion, of looking nice and talking well, seeming intelligent, seeming responsive, seeming competent. None of this is necessarily true. In fact, that's why you see the biggest absurdity of them all, movie actors becoming leaders of countries. It's just absurd! Because a good actor with a good script can present himself as anything.


Humans are cooperative animals. What's distinctive about us is that we work together in groups. It has made us very effective hunters, it makes us effective builders and so forth, and all of the things we learn as a child are the skills which make us human. If you waste time during these critical years, where every small short period of time is a window of learning for a particular skill, you miss out on something important. If you don't learn that particular skill and that window closes, then later you can't go back and sort of "rewrite the disk," to use a computer simile. It's more like burning data into a CD. If all the data doesn't go down right, you've got a Frisbee.

But we grow up so slow, these days.  At twenty four, just out of university, blinking from the hangover of the night before.  In the West (and the East) (and the South) and the North and "only parts" stuck in there as necessary.


social structures, since they're founded in early childhood learning which locks in, burns in, like a CD, doesn't allow societies to change very fast or radically. They change slowly, they evolve. The evolution sometimes is so glacially slow that you'll find ritual behavior in many groups of people that goes back 10,000 years even. No one really knows why certain things are done, but everybody feels uncomfortable unless they do them.

Town vs. Country

I'm basically a country boy; I don't like cities much. I like nature. I don't like to rely upon the civil infrastructures; we generate our own electricity and so forth.

"And so forth."  Diary, melo, please!

Yes, all those currents, those threads...I can hear European Tribune discourses...the world joins hands via the internet; but what are we learning, and how is it changing us and those around us (friends, family, neighbours, colleagues, strangers, and beyond the human dimension to other animals, to plants, to oceans...)


I think Tim Leary was probably the worst thing that ever happened to the psychedelic movement. He made everything difficult for all of us; he wouldn't listen to any of us who tried to tell him to back off a bit. He was most probably primarily responsible for all the draconian laws we have today on the use of psychedelics and other mind-altering things.


As a child, I actually thought I wanted to be an engineer because I thought engineers made things. I even went off and enrolled in engineering college. It took me about a year to discover that engineers seemed to be sitting at desks with slide rules all the time. Slide rules were terrible, man!


I just wasn't interested in the drugs. I didn't care if people smoked pot or anything; I just wasn't interested in it. And my friends were quite tolerant; they didn't have any problems with me about that. If I didn't want to do it, fine. If I didn't want to drink, fine. If I didn't want to smoke cigarettes, that's fine. None of this was important, and nobody was on any kind of crusade about it. It was there, I just wasn't interested.


I bounced some checks, and got into trouble, and I realized that I couldn't deal with the regular, commercial world of finance that allowed you to write checks, and to have credit cards and all the rest of it. I decided after that I didn't want to deal with it, and I've never had a checking account after that, ever. Or any sort of credit card. I was on probation for awhile for having written some checks that the money wasn't there for. I regretted it. I thought it was a terrible breach of honor and everything else on my part; I was just appalled at what I had done. The judge gave me probation, and when the probation ended I felt sort of like I had been released from something.

Taking Drugs for the First Time

I found a buddy at a little funky coffee house near LA City College, and he came over to me and said, "I've got make a trip to Pasadena." I said, "What for?" He said, "You don't want to get involved, I need to score some pot, and you don't want to have anything to do with drugs, you're on probation." I said, "No, I'm not on probation, I got off probation a couple of weeks ago. I'll give you a lift." I gave him a lift out there, and after he came out of the house, I said, "Well, look, maybe it's time I should try some of this."


I think one of the aspects of illegality in drugs is that once you've made things illegal, all of a sudden you've opened up a Pandora's Box of things, and anyone who goes for any of them winds up in contact with all of them. And if you're going to break one law, which is a civil disobedience of a sort, well why not break another? These kinds of laws (prohibition) teach disrespect for the legal process.

The Constitution

The elite who wrote the US Constitution intended for the government to be weak, and to be easily ruled by the elite. The elite, of course, was the framers, and they were descendents of the aristocracy who had migrated here from England, and they had a very strong social, moral feeling that they were the only ones who knew how to take care of things, that most people didn't, and therefore the society depended upon them to make sure things were done right. That didn't last very long; the framers were replaced by the mercantile classes very quickly in the early nineteenth century. Money rules to this very day. So they were disenfranchised from their own system which they had set up for themselves; it was some sort of cosmic karma.


The fact is that there is a group of men in the DEA that spend all of their time researching any possible new or overlooked substance, or even a precursor to a substance, that could possibly alter any aspect of your perception of reality, and place it immediately on the prohibited list. This is their thing. This is what they do every day.


Where you have 100 mcg. of LSD and you have nanograms of some strange fellow-traveler impurity that actually catalyzes the effect of the LSD on the nervous system into something else. I'm not going to say that this is what's happening, or that I necessarily believe this, but I do know that as you purify LSD you very quickly come to a point where it will not dissolve in the solvent from which you have crystallized it. It gets to a point where it's insoluble in the methanol, and you have to heat this for such a long period of time in fresh methanol that some of it breaks down. And once it has broken down, only then will it dissolve. So there's a lot of strange stuff going on with this "chemical" that doesn't necessarily work according to the usual principles of chemistry.


I just don't think it's good stuff. I don't think any of the synthetics based on those multi-ring exotic oils are good. I think they're very bad and I think that you're creating a substance that the body has no way of dealing with because they don't occur in nature.

Is LSD 'Natural'?

With a planet that has literally hundreds of thousands of species of animals and plants yet to be discovered, you cannot definitively say that this compound does not naturally occur. I mean, how long ago was it that they thought that ergot alkaloids only existed in various forms of fungus. When they discovered them in morning glory seeds, people thought there's got to be contamination in the laboratory, there's something wrong here. The fact of the matter is that there are probably hundreds of extremely powerful psychedelic plants that are just not yet known to modern science.

The Point

I've experimented with a lot of these different things over a period of years, and I sat down one day and said, you know I'm just buggering myself up with this shit, and it's not taking me anywhere that I can't get with psilocybin, DMT, LSD, and mescaline. These are naturally occurring. They work. Your body has a "history" of experience with them. People have used them for thousands and thousands of generations, and we've adapted to them because they exist in nature, they're there for us to use, they're the planetary hormones that allow us to bring our consciousness forward to the next level. They've always been used this way.

The Eye

After awhile you get to point where if you really want a highly visual trip, you've got really only one option: You have to use a solution, and you have to drop it directly into your eye. I guarantee, you will find all the visual stuff you ever saw on any trip you ever took, it will pop right back into your consciousness if you do it this way.

B: Why do you think it is, because it's interacting with the retina?

O: The eye is an extension of the brain.

B: So it gets in there fast.

O: It goes directly onto the brain.

We must be getting near the end.  No, we're only half way there...

The Drug Is Inside You

I may be right or I may be wrong, I don't know, but it was always my opinion that LSD itself wasn't the active material, that it was simply a catalyst/agent that caused your body to release something that actually did the job. That was the reason why you couldn't take it several days in a row, because you had to recharge this "body-battery" or capacitor that you were discharging. The reason that the intensity was proportional to the amount, was that the larger amounts caused a rapid and more complete discharge of the stored material.

Inner is outer, and outer is inner, there are no walls, only degrees of interaction...

Money II

Seven and a half grams of starting material carefully manipulated produces nearly seven and a half grams of final product. That's about a 67% yield, which is a very, very good yield for a synthetic peptide process -- especially as sensitive and unstable as the lysergic acid compounds are. So seven and a half grams of material is a supply for a big mob of people. -- a massive amount, at the dosage we chose, nearly thirty thousand trips!
So what are you going to do with it? Give it away. All the equipment that I had to use to make it is costly, so I had to get some money back. But I never felt it was my money. None of the money that came from acid I felt was my money. I was like a custodian of it, and didn't know what to do with it. It was a real problem for me.
I never bought a decent car even during this time. I certainly didn't buy any houses or anything. I just didn't believe it was mine. What I was doing was something for the community that had great cosmic significance -- although I could live off of it. But I tried to plow as much of it back into the community that I could. I gave a lot of the material away, gave out handfuls of the stuff in the park all the time. I put about half of it out through the free distribution system, and the other half went through the money distribution system. I felt that giving so much of it away for free kept the markup in the sale loop to a low level. The quality stayed high and the markup stayed low, and people got it anyway. Putting it out through the sales trip allowed a wide distribution that wouldn't have happened if there had been no money in it.

The Bottom Line

We were trying to do it right, because anything else is a rip-off. After all, people are taking this into their bodies, and shouldn't have to take a risk with their health.

The eyeball is the external part of the brain.  Every word...but surely everyone's in bed by now?  Or on another thread.  A hundred quotes from Owsley Stanley III, now known as "Bear"...well, here are some more.


we figured 250 mcg., with a possible plus or minus 5% tabbing error -- so we put an extra 10% in there. And then we decided that we wanted to cover for any possible deterioration from exposure to light, so we put another 10% in there, and wound up with over 300 mcg. It was sort of like rocket fuel. It was a mistake. I'll freely admit to that.

The interview now repeats itself--from mystical experiences to cane toads.  And then we get this.

I had a friend, a big black dude, who lived in Berkeley. He was quite a character, and he would tell me I had to come down with him to see Kesey. I had heard of Kesey, and read his books, and he says to me, enthusiastically, "Fantastic, he's got these Hells Angels." I said, "Shit, man, you've got to be out of your mind. And you, a black guy! Those Angels EAT `niggers.' What are you doing?"

He says, "Ah, I don't know. It's pretty interesting. He's been feeding them all acid. You wouldn't believe what's going on down here, man!" I said, "No, I don't want anything to do with Hells Angels. Stay away from those guys, man." Because everything I had heard about them was just horrible.

But finally, one day I said, "Okay, come on. If it's important to you, I'll go down." So I went down with him and, Jesus, boy, that was sort of like getting strapped to a rocket sled. The stuff that those guys would do with your head, and the drugs and everything else, was nothing like anything else I had experienced before. It was absolutely dramatic. And it WAS true. The Angels turned out to be some of the farthest-out people I ever in my life had met. They were just cut free by this thing. It was like a key. Kesey was playing with stuff which I recognized as ancient magical shit. But they didn't know it. They just kind of stumbled on it by playing around. They stumbled on a lot of the old stuff that was just buried. I said, "I've read some old esoteric documents in occult literature, and this stuff is not visible. You've got to be real careful with this shit." I thought they were running kind of loose with it. And that it was dangerous. And in some ways it was. But it didn't matter. It was working and they were doing it. This, of course, is evidence that the ancient doctrines are based on psychedelics.

The ancient doctrines are based on psychedelics...discuss...believe...disagree...you need drugs to understand them..."The Kingdom of Heaven is Within"...

Yes.  And now

The Dead

The Dead's records always sounded contrived. Because the standard technique of going into a studio and sitting around and laying down a track at a time and building up twelve songs over six mon

And so it ends.

Sunday morning

For all of you suffering under the assault to human possibilities that is much of current human behaviour, I humbly offer you an Om.  At the very least we will vibrate our ribcages.

i wonder how many human life-cycles it took before men stopped running away screaming from wildfire, and learned to harness it.

the bear was like one of the first humans to offer tinderboxes, spark and wick.

let your light shine rg!

--i'd love to diary my alt-energy hobby, but want to wait, especially till i can master the process of getting images easily into diaries... i've done it, but it's a bit slow and lumpy on dial-up...

there is a fair 'utopia' in citta di castello coming up the 12 to 14 october on alt energy, and i was feeling the urge to try and photo-blog it.

will see if i can find the time and tools to do something decent.

ta for the prod!

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 12:22:41 AM EST
as you know I agree with a great deal of what this gentleman says, apart from the 'benefits' of acid. Like mushrooms, peyote or Yage - they require a certain innocence and balance in the taker, and a ritualistic appraoch to their taking. Their effects are 'mystical', in that they can take you so far from the reality in which you feel comfortable, that you must have the mental endurance and courage of an explorer.

They are not recreational, except in the true meaning of that word. They re-create.

There are many much safer methods for realigning oneself with reality.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:13:04 AM EST
they require a certain innocence and balance in the taker, and a ritualistic appraoch to their taking

Well said.

They are not recreational, except in the true meaning of that word. They re-create.

I see colour relationships now that are a result of my first mushroom experience--the colour test is how I know if I'm getting an effect from psilocybin.

There are many much safer methods for realigning oneself with reality.

You mean safer to the psyche?  I would say (off the top o' me 'ed) that anything that suddenly re-aligns your reality is (potentially) dangerous because, as Owsley put it, "No one really knows why certain things are done, but everybody feels uncomfortable unless they do them."

Take/ receive anything (weekend seminar; a film; a conversation in the pub; a sexual encounter; notice of redundancy) and...there's that uncomfortable feeling.

Physically (effect on body), my experience is that psychedelics are health-promoting.  They did tests in the sixties, giving LSD to alcoholics, individuals with mental health issues.  With correct setting and ritual and relationships (and as you say so well, "a certain innocence and balance in the taker"--where balance can be acceptance of the situation--)

So, I think that anyone who has doubts about taking psychedelic substances shouldn't.  Resolve the doubts first, take them with friends, get out into nature, create a safe environment...

My personal experience is that the thing that disturbs people the most when on psychedelics is that the world reveals itself counter to the claims of the ego.  I read an article once by a guy who said something like, "The ego creates a world which protects it from hurt.  When you take psilocybin "you" see the world as it is.  This is dangerous because you "see" what the ego has been protecting itself from and how it has been protecting itself.  Who is "you" in that mix I dunno, but it's the difference (of degree? of intention?) between consciousness and sentience, or intelligence and understanding...I dunno...

There are many much safer methods for realigning oneself with reality.

Reminds me of the buddhists who say mushrooms (psychedelics) give you a glimpse of higher reality, but they shouldn't be used because they are like (this is my analogy) being flown to the top of a mountain in a helicopter rather than taking the path.  For people who don't believe in mountains and think there is nothing to see, though, I think psychedelics open up as receptors--our senses--to the "noise", or the shapes, or the structures...

A last point (I is a rambling man): I saw shapes in trees (when I had taken some mushrooms), excellent sculptures, beautiful and alive and I thought, "I could sculpt that."  Then another voice (a friend of mine claims psychedelics create temporary schizophrenia--don't take if you are not balanced, in the company of people you trust, etc.!) said, "But they are there now.  Scultping them...what would be the point?"

The point would be to show forms and combinations to people who hadn't seen them before.

Still, psychedelics are usually taken rarely or not at all by most people.  I think they are a self-limiting drug both in dosage and in individuals taking them, and for good reasons to do both with the substance(s) and the people involved.

Ramble ramble.  (What other methods were you thinking of?)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:38:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'll get back to you - now I want to spend some time with my daughters. Be back late ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 07:58:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
interesting, his take on leary, especially the bit about his resposibility for the backlash...

if true, it is tempting to think of a world in which such hate and venom had not built up agin the idea of entheogen consumption.

i think most people aren't into taking psychedelics because their lives are going tolerably enough (soft bigotry etc.) that they remain occupied on a relatively shallow level of perception, running their godgiven mental ferraris around in 1st gear thinking that the noise they're making means that they're actually covering serious ground.. .

it usually takes a radical crisis, or sometimes the long accumulation of repressed needs leading to a psychic flash point of temperature to trigger a fascination for the 90% of our consciousness that remains veiled, except for the dreambody.

literally the flex goes from the intellect's blade, and, brittle stump in hand, the survivor is forced to dig deeper into his or her spiritual curiosity and resources to find a new solution.

were they to stumble upon psychedelics at that stage. it could be valuable, if set'n'setting were right.

 entheogens are signal augmenters, capable of picking up signals so faint that they are way below the level of the everyday mind.

if one gets a taste for the challenge of seeing and feeling parts of oneself that don't jive with one's sense of identity, this can help us understand why the sign above the oracle at delphi said 'know thyself'.

there is a natural repulsion within ourselves for the worst in our own character, that is highlit under the microscope of self-examination.

it is humbling to unpack the psychic baggage we are carrying as a consequence of cultural conditioning, however i think it is always better to know what's 'around' you, and unless your life is already beyond improvement(!), there are valuable clues for bettering one's attitude -and consequently one's relationships - woven into the experience.

it is shattering to be asked to jettison accrued defence mechanisms, painfully constructed over years or lifetimes, as it can be liberating to accept the challenge of asking to see what's behind the doors of perception, and survive the experience.

i like to think of it as 'bringing the butterfly back alive'

i remember the sense of risk back in the 60's and the sense that one was jumping off some metaphorical cliff to see if one could fly.

everyone knew of some good reason not to do it, like for instance the poor sod loon-babbling in front of the tube station, whispered to be an 'acid casualty'.

so if you did, there was an implicit 'nothing to lose', 'all or nothing', or even a 'wtf, it can't be worse than what i'm already going through' element to the whole affair.

i totally agree with eisner about the 'body-heavy' thing.

nice work, rg, the top image is breathtakingly beautiful.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 08:10:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In January of this year I was at the LSD-Symposium in honor of the 100st birthday of Hofmann. Most of the speakers had the same take on Leary, him having been responsible for the backlash.
by Fran on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 09:03:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The only book about Ivon Hitchens in our local library is "For Library Use Only."  It can't be bought in the shops, I had to go to the gallery near the Kings Road (London) to get a couple of old catalogues.  He preferred painting wide, three wide by one deep, to create a narrative effect.  Lived in the woods near Midhurst.

In the gallery there was an Ivon Hitchens on the wall, colours still bright, a beautiful composition (there was a Henry Moore painting--I think it was Henry Moore--on the wall opposite.)

"How much is that one?" I said, pointing to the one by Ivon Hitchens.


"And the Henry Moore?"


Any art collectors out there with £30,000 to spare, I'd recommend an Ivon Hitchens.  They're beautiful, will only go up in value, and are probably £50,000+ these days.

He lived in the woods, built his house, took his easel and paints out into the woods every day, developed a technique of simple brush strokes depicting all manner of depths and resonances...

Here's another one for you, melo.

His line drawings are good, too.

btw, I think afew had some useful comments re: storing pics online.  (If anyone has any useful advice...I wanna read melo's diary and see his pics!)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 09:48:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
These are superb. Thanks for posting them.

I haven't seen anything quite this good since a Jack Yeats exhibition in Bristol more than ten years ago.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 01:58:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I've heard an interesting explantion for the effects of acid. Most neurons in the neo-cortex (if I recall correctly) are associated with an inhibitory neuron that shuts down the first one what it fires too much.

(sorry, this going to be a slightly complex explanation)

A neuron fires if it receives a certain pattern of signals from the possibly hundreds of dendritic upstream connections to other neurons. It fires if a signal of its own down the axon to reach out and become the dendritic input of a downstream cell. I have no ideas if this process can be recursive with downstream dendrites reaching back to attach themselves to upstream neurons - but it's an interesting thought ;-)

Anyway, if the incoming pattern/s (the algorithm) keep the cell firing, the inhibitory neuron shuts it down (don't ask me how, but it does). This can be seen in the phenomena of 'When the novelty wears off" type. You can cause things to disappear from your sight by staring at them long enough. This would appear to be an inhibitory neuron effect. You can think of many others.

The inhibitory neuron needs to charge itself with a substance called GABA which it can otherwise run out of, and no longer be able to inhibit. This happens when you are asleep - which according to the theory may have a connection with dreaming ie your neural networks have lost their inhibitors.

Back to acid: I explain the above to show how changes in the inhibitory system can affect the way the brain works. Acid may have an effect on this system in that it would, in a way, remove the 'repression', to take away the limiter/compressor in the system and 'hear' the real loudness and dynamic of everything.

Our sense of time may come from that repression, in the same way that sand falls thru the narrow waist of an hourglass, regulating an even sense of time. Remove the regulator and time goes crazy.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:53:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
correction "when it fires too much"

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:54:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Time is definitely in the loop somewhere. A decent acid trip lasts no less than 10-12 hours (and there is no way to stop it, no "time out", no "I want out" etc, you just have to be patient) ... but on occasion you feel as though those last several days, literally.
by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:55:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
THC can often be more spatially distorting, though time too. I recall my student days walking back to my flat absolutely zonked, trying to get a grip on the geography and realising that I had walked past the same post box three times, And THEN realised that actually I had been admiring the post box and had been walking around it. And finally realised that my walking around the post box had completely lost me any sense of the internal compass I had been trying to keep in my head and that now I'd have to start all over again ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:02:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If you have never experienced it, it is hard to explain the feeling. It is not at all bad (the spatial and orientational distortion) - it's a bit like when you misplace something and have to focus on where you might have put it, by retracing your steps in your mind when you last had it. You have to focus on the gestalt, while nevertheless not succumbing to the 'journey is the destination' crap - otherwise you never get home. ;-)

Other people seem unaware of it, just as, if you focus, you can have phone conversations with people and they are are unaware of any difference (my mother, for instance!). It really is a matter of trusting your good old autopilot system that also keeps you safe while driving on the motorway even if you can't remember the last 10 kms while thinking about something else. (I am talking about complete sobriety here - the normal daydreaming that we all do on a fairly empty road).

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 08:25:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
btw, rg, I love your diaries - I read them, though I do not have often time to respond to them. :-)
by Fran on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 09:13:56 AM EST

to you, Fran!  And coz you're a star, here's another one.

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 09:26:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nice stuff, rg.

I can foresee with great clarity that your next diary will be on John Lilly, hmm?

LSD is indeed quite strange, I don't know if I've mentioned this here before but I have beaten time back with LSD (when I was younger). For instance, I was at a friends' flat on campus, they were working on some essay so I was bored. I took LSD. Then a few hours later, I was having some pretty wacky time dilation experiences, so I asked them to check their watch before I left the flat. I then left the flat, stopped at the campus bar and chatted with people there, then went in the campus basement to play at getting scared (you know those long corridors with pipes that you get in some horror movies), then went back to my friend's flat ... and only a pair of minutes had passed on the watch. After consultation, I had indeed been at the bar and had had those conversations with people who attested to that effect.

So what happened? There is no way that I could do all that I did in two minutes, nor that I could have bent the laws of physics.

That's what LSD is all about, you just register in a different universe altogether. Not, like I said, that you beat the laws of physics, you're just perceiving everything, including time, differently (jumbled). And everyone around you seems to be feeding your experience. Something is obviously very wrong but no one can put their finger on it.

A classic LSD experience for all is to try to find your keys in your pocket. You can't. You flip the pocket inside out, you even ask people (who haven't taken LSD) to check it for you. No keys. But when you get home later that day/night and look for your keys, there they are in your pocket.

My craziest experience on LSD was with 2 friends on campus. We were discussing the Byzantine General's problem that we had just learned, then a friend of ours (sober) walked in, and he got a bit spooked because the 3 of us had, in the midst of our conversation, started playing at being Byzantine Generals, without noticing it, but in such a manner that neither of us three had a clue as to who was being the traitor. And there was no way for the external friend to know either.

Final note: you remember your LSD experiences clearly the next day, unlike alcohol-binge nights. It's just that what you remember isn't real ...

Anyhow, that's all in the past. I don't think I'll ever take LSD again, it's too intense.


by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 09:53:59 AM EST
er, i think you're making a wise decision...


'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 12:52:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Reality is a lot more plastic than people think it is. :)
by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 02:00:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I live in the rural heart of west Wales, and it's hard to move for old 70's hippies who didn't have something to do with Operation Julie. My neighbour from  a few years ago was one of thee people arrested over that. (Although originally the police managed to arrest his brother by mistake who was totally unconnected in any way with the nefarious activities)

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 11:07:58 AM EST
ceebs, I had a read-up on Operation Julie.  7.5 million doses...  It seems they made up doses based on how much raw materials they had--and it seems you get a lot of LSD for your 1 gram of original substance.  (7.5 kilos = 7.5 million doses...7,500 --> 7,500,000...1000 doses per gram?)

How are the old(er) hippies doing these days?  I have a soft spot for older (fifty plus) hippy types.  The ones I've met (not that many) have been very friendly.

A friend of mine lived with his family in a caravan in Wales (I don't know where) in the late seventies/early eighties.  The caravan was in a field at the bottom of which was a stream where they got their water (his dad set up a pumping system.)  They received a bill from the water board.  His dad complained, what with them getting water from the river not the grid.  Turns out the water authorities own the rain that falls on the fields--and our roofs!  So he had to pay a nominal amount.

(Last time I went was over ten years ago, I took a walk up in the Breacon Beacons, caught some lovely sunny weather.  With the sun and blue skies, it reminded me of Switzerland.)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:51:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If i go up to the top of the hill in front of my house, then I can see the Brecons. If i get into the car they are less than an hour away through the winding roads.

It seems they made up doses based on how much raw materials they had--and it seems you get a lot of LSD for your 1 gram of original substance.  (7.5 kilos = 7.5 million doses...7,500 --> 7,500,000...1000 doses per gram?)

the active dose ranges from 50 microgrammes up to 600 microgrammes, above that ammount there is no more effect.  so in theory you could get 20,000 doses out of each individual gramme. in practice individual doses tend to weigh in at between 250 and 300 microgrammes

from what I've been reading the current supplies are using a different isomer of the LSD molecule, which can be produced more reliably and cheaply, but is less effective.

A friend of mine lived with his family in a caravan in Wales (I don't know where) in the late seventies/early eighties.  The caravan was in a field at the bottom of which was a stream where they got their water (his dad set up a pumping system.)  They received a bill from the water board.  His dad complained, what with them getting water from the river not the grid.  Turns out the water authorities own the rain that falls on the fields--and our roofs!  So he had to pay a nominal amount.

There's a lot of that style of living within twenty miles of of the west coast centred around Aberystwyth. During the privatisation debate in parliament during the 80's a tory MP came up with one of the truly great Jaw droppingly stupid quotes about water "anyone would think it fell God-given from the skies".

To add a touch of the bizzare to water, If you dip a water wheel into a stream to run a generator, the Water companies will send you a bill for the electricity you've generated. However if you dam the stream, so the water is generating energy through your own effort, then you get the electricity for nothing.

I have a friend who's approach is to threaten to charge them for cleaning up the chemical polution that belongs to them that is being deposited on his land.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:38:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What interests me about LSD is the occasional stories you hear from people who sell Vitamin C or bits of clean blotting paper or some other completely mundane non-psychoactive thing at festivals, and then have punters coming up to them afterwards telling them what an outstanding trip they had, best ever, etc.

What is that about, exactly?

This account is worth reading too.

I don't do drugs because I get natural synaesthesia anyway, and rather too much of my artwork looks or sounds like I'm already an acid casualty. So, further chemical alteration - possibly not essential.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 02:17:53 PM EST
Another good reason for not doing acid is that it's really dangerous. You can pop veins in your brain, go totally insane, or try to fly off a balcony, for instance. At least two (hopefully three) of these things have never happened to me, but these are documented things.
by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 02:35:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I heard the "balcony" story was made up by some policeman somewhere.  When asked to prove it, there was no proof, coz it was made up.  Then there's Bill Hicks.

You know what I mean. Always that same LSD story, you've all seen it.

"Young man on acid, thought he could fly, jumped out of a building. What a tragedy."

What a dick, fuck him!

He's an idiot. If he thought he could fly, why didn't he take off from the ground first? Check it out.
You don't see ducks lining up to catch elevators to fly South. They fly from the ground, you moron. Quit ruining it for everybody. He's a moron, he's dead, good. We lost a moron, fucking celebrate.

Boy I just felt the world get lighter - we lost a moron.  Put on the Hammer album, I'm ready to dance!


"We lost a moron." I don't mean to sound cold or cruel or vicious, but I am so that's the way it comes out. Professional help is being sought.

How about a positive LSD story? Wouldn't that be news-worthy, just the once? To base your decision on information rather than scare tactics and superstition and lies? I think it would be news-worthy.

"Today, a young man on acid realised that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration. That we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively. There is no such thing as death, life is only a dream and we're the imagination of ourselves."

"Here's Tom with the weather."

I've never tried LSD and don't plan to.  There are no degrees, it seems.  You step in the rocket and whoosh!  Mushrooms you can take one at a time.  I have a friend who loves LSD, though, and his brain never went pop, physically or mentally.  I don't believe it sends you insane--unless you take ridiculous amounts, and that's true of chocolate, coffee, beer, and whisky, not to mention television.

Popping veins in your brain...  Got any links?

(I'm working on the assumption that LSD is a physically benign drug, so any evidence to the contrary would be useful.)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:06:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I do have one reliable eye witness account from a former Mod who has told me about a former friend who decided that he could fly while riding his Vespa.

Maybe he could have at that. Unfortunately the side of the house that he slammed into at high speed killed that idea. (Literally.)

And there's always Sid Barrett for anyone who wants an example of too much of a good thing.

It's still true though that other more legal things will kill in you less spectacular but equally fatal and messy ways.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:19:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Perhaps he was watching the end of Quadrophenia.

I do have one friend who was turned vegitarian after being chased round the house by a man wielding a handfull of raw kidneys whilst my friend was under the influence.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:56:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I can hear vegetarians plotting.

"You give 'im the LSD.  We'll wait till he's talking to God and her thousand angels, then I'll rush out and wave the raw kidneys at him."

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:00:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
[whistles innocently]
by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:19:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
we ended up having to dig him out from under the fitted carpet in the houses bathroom where he was curled up round the pedestal suppoorting the sink.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:52:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I was told of the guy who stuck his head out of the train going from Crawley to Brighton and had it lopped off by a tunnel wall.  "Friends of friends"...

"I tell you, mate, he was trippin' 'is nuts off and just whoom!  Drove into the wall."

"Had he been drinking?"

"Nah.  I don't think so."

"Well, were you with him?"

"Well, it wasn't me.  It was me mate Tony.  He told me about it, but he swears it's true!"

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:58:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I also don't know anyone whose brain fried, but I do know the sister of a boy who hung himself a few weeks after taking his first ever acid (and who was never the same after he did, or so the sister told me). Acid probably wasn't the culprit but the trigger in that case.

So I'd still definitely say that LSD can make you insane, if there is an underlying weakness that can be pushed forward. If you're as strong as a rock mentally, then I wouldn't know. I personally never fried my brain on it.

Can it pop a vein in your brain? Actually I don't know, I always assumed from Phillip K. Dick's eulology at the end of his book, A Scanner Darkly (haven't seen the movie yet) that all the list of friends with "permanent brain damage" were cases of people who had abused of LSD.

I suppose we could research this somewhat.

What's certain is that LSD probably kills a hundred thousand times (if not a million) less people each year than cigarettes do.

by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:32:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And I never had a bad trip. I only once got annoyed/impatient during a trip, but that's all. Because this ultra-talkative guy whom I didn't know kept on following me everywhere (this was at a house party) and telling me stuff like "I, yes I, know where the 7 points of truth are" and I didn't want to listen to him. And he kept following me, and it was horrible. But I'd never go as far as calling that a bad trip.
by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:35:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
One thing's for sure, LSD makes you really good at some things.

For instance I tried competing at minesweeper once on it with a friend, and we both broke our sober time-records by a very long shot (I don't recall by how much, but I remember the difference was impressive - and this was a time of my life when I used to play minesweeper -or civilisation- for days straight). And we hadn't imagined it, there was still an impressive expert mode record to see the next day. Which neither of us was ever capable of beating after that day (although had we tried again on LSD ...).

But, LSD also makes you really bad at other things. Like fnding your keys, for instance.

by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:51:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]

i remember trying to play chess on acid, very well.

the beauty and symbolism of the pieces, the intellectual grace of the game itself, the dignity of its age, and the historical reality of its use by so many millions of people who'd used it as medium of friendship, etc, all these blew me away.

the only problem was to have a good chess game, you have to have 2 people who both want to win.

in my altered state, i just couldn't for the life of me muster any will-to-win at all.

in fact the very idea was exhausting even to contemplate!

i found the 'natural' entheogens to be dirtier, slower, and more familiar- feeling.

by dirtier i mean mybody went through varying reflexes of rejection, be it the bitterness of peyote buttons making me gag, ayahuasca causing a deep vomit, after which they were both wonderful.

mushies sometimes left me feeling a tad liverish the next day, though some hawaiian, washington state, and mexican ones were fine.

acid i found to be much more reflective of contemporary times, in that the biggest factor was its lightning speed of thoughts and feelings all tunbling uncontrollably through my consciousness, a tsunami of raw data that sometimes was very threatening to my sense of psychic orientation.

a bit like bodysurfing, when you 'go into the washer' and have to have enough breath to last through those moments when you don't know which way is up, and have to be careful not to spend energy thrashing towards which way you think is up, but in fact may be down.

so it was very, very destabilising to many parts of me, but once through the surf, there were many deeply inspiring moments, which gave me the courage to face the parts of my life that were depressing me big time.

nature, especially the night sky, and the ocean had an aliveness that extended a sense of love, very personal indeed. they were friends...

and they knew me and how to touch me deep inside, in ways nothing and no-one had managed before.

what intrigues me most about entheogens, (and which imo has implications for world peace and interfaith understanding) is the effects on personal morality.

the 'natural' entheogens are more merciful, whereas acid was remorsefully acute, when it came to examination of one's conscience.

there's almost always a moment when it seemed too cruel to really get what an awful person i had it in me to be, yet it had to be taken on board to have the whole picture, and so to 'work' on it.

self hatred on acid is what drives people off the deep end, i think.

finding something in oneself to love and nurture was the answer, something that was emotionally and intellectually rewarding, and in which one could acknowledge an improvement trajectory in the 'real world'!

ergo, music!

playing slide through good equipment with a good band and a crowd that wants to rock, and a few hundred mics upping the ante...well i just haven't found any sensation quite so complex, exciting and soul-involving before or since.

 i say since, because that was a few years ago, and it is near-impossible to find psychedelics in italy, and the closest place to find them is in switzerland, in the smartshops, where you can find really amazing mushrooms, san pedro cactus, but no acid.

then you have to drive them back through the border....

i'm glad i have had so many great experiences from entheogens, but that's too much hassle, expense and risk to make it happen....

which proves they're not addictive, to me at least!

the most beautiful substance for me was mescaline sulphate, it took so long to come on, but was so golden when it finally did....

the oddest bar none was when at 18 years old i found myself at a party in marrakesh thrown by a scion of the krupp family...

whoa...the party itself was pretty damn weird, in its over-the-top combo of opulence and decadence, but the real surprise came when someone offered me a little pipe of what seemed like grass.

i took a hit and was slammed into a peak-acid experience, but instead of a few hours to climb there, it took 20 seconds...

i had no idea that kind of verticality could exist!

after i picked up myself off the carpet, and asked wtf had been in the pipe, i was told it was dmt on mint leaves.

extreme sports for the brain.... upwards bungee jumping....

it all happened so fast there was no chance to react, like being thrown out of the space shuttle without even knowing you had bought a ticket.

very... interesting....

then it comes out somewhere that dmt is naturally occurring in our bodies....

sven, you have the skinny on that too?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 03:44:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nice to hear all that melo, it seems that in my desire to give funny/wacky experiences about LSD, I forgot to say that the reason I kept on taking it for so long was because when it wasn't busy making things so funny, so jumbled, and so distorted, it was busy making everything so clear, so profound, and in a lot of cases so beautiful.

I've never tried chess on acid, but watching movies, reading books, listening to music, playing music, watching sports matches, shopping ... all of these things were intensenly pleasurable. I've got to say though that unfortunately I haven't had the chance of ever beeing one of those "sight and scenery" people on acid. I was always 100% urban, confined, and I enjoyed it even then ... so I can't begin to imagine what it'll be like if I ever take some in a natural reserve.

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 04:47:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
alex, i started tripping in s. kensington, and ladbroke gtove, and biba's...!

seeing great rock/blues up front was what confirmed acid's power-to-perceive, think johnny winter jamming with traffic and steve winwood.

think pink floyd at the roundhouse, jimi hendrix, etc, shamans of the journey..

seemed like as the dawn rose and ordinary 'reality' stole back in...the triumph of the banal) i would always become very conscious of what astrange eco-construct cities were, and how vulnerable they were to everyone behaving civilly etc.

thatcher was still to come, but tehere was a growing sense of doom in the acrid polluted industrial skies that made coming down even worse, and the beauty of natural forms like trees was the only salve for that particular brand of pain.

i'd spend my whole dole check on train rides outside 'the smoke' trying to find a fiels where i could not hear one car. see one pylon etc, just to fell what that would be like...

damn hard to find, even then,,,

there was much more pain and viciously exacting soul-scraping those first years than bliss, but there would always be a moment of transcendence that a few bruised months later, wold always keep me returning, willing to pay any price.

for those moments were moments of sipping from the grail, no matter how short or evanescent, they gave meaning to my mostly sorry eiostence, and i gradually learned to trust their power to act as longterm points of spiritual reference.

once i learned that everything was alive and taliking and plants, clouds and animals told richer, more satisfying stories than even old architecture could, i started on my search for rural/intellectual balance, all the way to hawaii, and now to umbria.

i do miss the cultural collisions living in cities affords though, and yearn for them to be less polluted...post oil maybe...

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:30:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
One thing about cities on acid, is that they teem with music. Everything is musical, a train carriage's metallic clicks and tings are musical, a car's acceleration is musical.

Sidenote about being urban: I could always see a computer screen's flickering when on acid. Same with neon lights.

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:41:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
i HATE tv when tripping...

talk about consciousness-sucking...

funnily enough i like it fine when i'm halfway straight!

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:53:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What about challenges (well, except chess and games where beating someone is essential, as you pointed out)?

I used to loooove mental challenges when tripping. I'd try IQ quizzes (personal record: 193), I'd try to be the first person to sucessfully establish bidirectional communication with animals, I'd play computers games, I'd try to be a fluent cithar player. And sometimes it just seemed that with the right focus, I could almost get there ...

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:59:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
great point alex!

i think they did some studies involving low doses of acid and language accelerated learning, and iirc there was some postive news on that, but it got squelched in the leary backlash...

i suspect the mental software that enables some 'autistic' people to instantly calculate dizzying mathematical factoids is trembling just below our reach, a cosmic google-well of genius and inspiration,

music is definitely rooted in similar atavistic ways, hardwired right into the motherboard.

if that is true, then the internet, browsers etc, are just external representations of our inner spider-sense, ideas as filaments...

to answer your question, i tended to want to soak into my right brain side while tripping.

facts, texts, linear thinking of almost any kind became drudge work compared to the often holiday-like aspects of outstripping the usual plodding trails, and trying out the 5d aspects of following where brighter, brighter lights led to less trod places, where joy went deeper and abode more.

i think i was still in l-brain burnout from years of bad-to-indifferent schooling.

forced fed facts like a foi-gras goose!

or is it 'foie'?

faith and the liver...

 the french call flesh 'chair'?

such an elegant metaphor...

such interesting meanings lurking in the cracks between languages!

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue Oct 3rd, 2006 at 05:52:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Trains were our thing, about half a mile away from the house was the main London to Derby trainline. We used to go and sit on top of one of the Bridges, facing the lines and wait for the intercity 125's to come past.

You'd get an odd ticking and hissing from the rails, then a blasting roar from the engine then the sound of all the carriages flying past, with all these rectangles of light as the windows shot past, then another blast of noise with the other engine. Topped off with the virtual silence of the tracks ticking and hissing, and the small red rear light swaying off into the distance.

Mightily impressive with a helping of halucinogens.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 08:38:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
yeah some get their jollies lying under airport runway approaches...

apparently the sound of one jet liner equals the sound of the world's population all om-ing at the same time...

i remember being totally fascinated by the stereo spread of the two creaky escalators at sloane square tube, waiting for the first morning train home after a party.

the wonders of bicameral thinking....my first inroads into hemisherical asynchronicity...

why doesn't someone oil that mofo?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue Oct 3rd, 2006 at 05:27:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh melo I forgot to say this, it's important I think.

My first ever consideration of ever being "vegetarian" came to me on acid! Until that time I was not appalled, and not disgusted by mammal and bird meat. But from that time on, I began to question it, question it, question it ... then came Sri Lanka where I gave it a try because the setting made it easier, and then I finally moved firmly in that direction here in France.

I was at a restaurant in London, with a few friends and colleagues. And no one had a clue that I was on acid. Now I wasn't hungry at all, or very remotely so (ordered a juice, ate a micro bit of salad ...). But we were having the menus, so eventually the main dish arrived. And there it was on my plate, a small chicken. One small chicken per person. And it sat in its plate, looking ridiculous ... the poor thing looked funny in a machiavelic/sickening way, with string around its legs and its head chopped off. And then I began to see the bestiality involved in doing this kind of thing, what it meant to be able to try to pass this off as a finely presented dish, the lies, manipulation, and blindness behind it. Then I saw my companion's chickens turn into skeletons progressively (as they ate), while I hadn't touched mine. And that was the trigger. It was no bad experience at all (nothing of the "bad trip" type), but an awakening, a painful awakening.

Sorry for meat-eaters, this was not meant as propaganda, I only meant to give insight on an experience.

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:04:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
i agree alex, it was very important, even crucial for me too.

at 21 i was tripping inside my cells and it was revealed to my shock that they were dyingg much more than they were regenerating, and it was going toi be downhill from then on.

this freaked me out, and that afternoon found me in portobello rd at the first macro-type restaurant of the time, called 'green gene', just around the corner from 'ceres', where i'd go play my djembe for fun, staring at some ubdercooked brown rice and some insipid boiled zucchini slices, presented in tepid glory.

thus began a weird couple of years oscillating between junk food binges and penitent vists to the gods of simple virtues.

this was a huge wakeup call for me, as i realised with great clarity that this was something i had to work out largely without help from others, in the crucible of my own will, so to speak.

every trip there was one moment when i felt strongly guided to continue working towards vegetarianism, and slowly i got there,.

many meat eating friends had stomach cramps tripping, and i had none. i think this has a lot to do with the milder acids your stomach needs to produce to break down vegetables.

tripping without telling anyone became a very interesting perceptive exercise for me too at one point.

e was interesting in that it helped a lot of peeps verbalise what was in their hearts, while acid often made people internalise without articulating too much.

hate that speed edge though...grinding jaws....no thanks

besides if you want to, you can learn to language some feelings tripping...amazingly enough....

its a bit like learning to sail in rough water and crosswinds.

not easy, but can become instinctive.

when needs must...

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:46:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I agree with everything you say melooo!

Maybe it's no surprise that "acid-heads" (long-time users) are massively vegetarian.

About tripping without telling anyone, I was quite good at it at the time. I even went to work once or twice and no one suspected (but didn't work so well, was too busy contemplating). The trick is to smother your enthusiasm and be very relaxed about what's happening to you. But I have on occasion blabbered stuff out inarticulately, when I wasn't focusing enough.

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:55:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I also forgot to mention that I got mugged on acid in London, with 2 other friends, by one apparently nervous man holding a tiny knife. This was inside an underpass? (pedestrian tunnel) right after leaving the Seven Sisters tube station. We were on our way to some sort of free rave party, with lots of cash and drugs in our pockets.

Now one of my friends had never been mugged, and was totally sober, and he was panicking during the whole ordeal. He kept coming to my ears and whispering things like "let's take him on, let's take him on, we're three and he only has a tiny knife". My other friend was a bit drunk, so didn't seem to care much. But I, I had taken acid before leaving home, so I was already tripping. And I just couldn't understand what the man really wanted. I patted him on the shoulder and asked him "but what do you want? is it money (here take 20 pounds). is it drugs (here take some ecstasy), but what do you want?". And the guy was looking at my money and stuff and going "you're all going to a party huh, give it all to me, now come on give it all". And he didn't seem to care that I was patting him on the shoulder. I was probably doing so with such an amount of love and desire to understand him, that he didn't feel threatened. Eventually he ran off, and that was that. His knife's blade was, frankly, maybe 2 inches long at most. And we were 3. But what did he want?

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:18:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
DMT is naturally occurring, but requires the presence of an inhibitor to become hallucogenic. In shamanic or ritualistic preparations, the vine that is cooked for Yagé is mixed with other plants that provide the inhibitor. It was described to me as a kind of yin-yang thing (the mixing of the plants). There were supposed to be different 'spirits' released according to the mix. One combination for instance would always be characterised by the appearance of a jaguar spirit.

My one experience of it (as a thin watery soup) was very strange in that I had no conscious awareness of any mind effects. I was simply dancing with about a dozen Tsukhamai warriors, back and forth in a line in front of a fire with a rhythmic stamp on the front foot. That was it. It did however go on for several hours without any sense of exhaustion or boredom. Next day I felt fine, except the Brazilian Marxist leader of the expedition was pissed that I had been chosen to join in and not him. I clearly had innocence and extreme naivity going for me, and the Indians had always enjoyed my physical humour and my joining in their 'childish' games.

That experience (the whole trip) had an enormous effect on me. I was changed totally by it. But I think the transposition from the 'Swinging London" of the late Sixties to the jungle would have done that anyway without the Yagé. Yagé BTW is not the Brazilian name for it. I think it was Dahjim or something like that.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:34:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There are no degrees, it seems.  You step in the rocket and whoosh!

Well it depends how you take it, on the tongue, intraveinous, swallowed ... I rarely took it on the tongue (intraveinous only Huxley has done, to my knowledge), because I preferred the stomach effect. It starts tingling very quickly, but you don't get the start of the mad rush until a good thirty minutes in or more even. After that it's all woouuuudj.

A silly thing I've done on occasion, is take acid when completely drunk. I used to know this guy in London who had a fridge with several acid tab sheets, and at least twice there, I got quite drunk (vodka etc), and then said "haha let's take acid", which only got me negative responses from people around. So I was alone to take some, thinking "haha I'm drunk, this will be fun".

Except to the best of my knowledge LSD is one of the most sobering things in the world. You gradually but snappliy stop being drunk and become high on acid. You can feel your brain and body just waking up quickly and the alcohol in your system trying to moonwalk out of there, looking red-faced from shame, and excusing itself for being so unimpressive. And then you're on acid alone for 12 hours while all your drunk friends have gone to sleep. Not particularly recommended.

by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:19:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I once had a difficult acid trip with a friend who wanted to climb out of the window (fourth floor in a Paris flat, giving out on to a courtyard) and walk along the gutter like a tightrope walker.

It wasn't belief in flying, but he was very insistent that you could do anything if you had absolute trust in yourself.

In the end I gave up trying to persuade him it was a bad idea, and went out. I forgot all about him. I saw him again hours later. He hadn't climbed out of the window, he'd gone out to look for me.

It's not a conclusive example of LSD's effects, however, because we had already heard all the flying stories and he may just have been fixed into some obsessive thinking about it for a while. Just as he might have been seeking to get me worried so I'd show I cared about him.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 04:45:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Your walking out after a while is exactly what I would have done on acid, it's just the kind of thing you do.

On a sidenote: the flying stories do seem excessive, but how many of you can say for sure they have never been tempted to jump off a bridge (not out of a desire to commit suicide, but just out of curiosity)? I know I have lots of times, and that's also why I don't like bridges. I always at some point stand near the railing and think "no, don't think about jumping Alex, don't think about jumping". And I am not suicidal at all, I think life is a blast. It comes, I think, from a desire of mine to beat my own feelings of vertigo.

by Alex in Toulouse on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 04:55:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Hey, I don't have a lot of time to sit and chat, but this is a fab diary.  I think I unsuccessfully tried to sell Mig on the benefits of hallucinogens once.  

I've never tried LSD, but have had many significant experiences with mushrooms.  I kinda resent the notion that these experiences weren't "real" because what is "reality", you know?  How is bonding with someone over a few bottles of wine and more legit than bonding with someone while tripping out?  Anyway...  Do highly recommend taking one of these substances for a ride before you die.  Personally I can be very stubborn and rigid in my thinking, and these experiences seem to help limber up the mind, let go, make me realize there are different kinds of perfection and appreciate how multi-faceted reality actually is.  Perhaps it is similar to the effect religion has on people in the sense of "letting go", except this kinds of letting go doesn't involve abandoning the intellect or cloistering yourself in the safety of some God who isn't going to let anything bad happen to you.  You could argue that it is bad because it doesn't require much "effort", but I think that, like having bad trips or good trips or relying on drugs or just making them part of your toolbox, depends on the nature of the person doing it to begin with.  Some people may challenge themselves with it, some may simply use it to run away.  Not unlike anything else in life.

Anyway.  I never had a bad experience on the stuff.  Might have just gotten lucky.

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -Voltaire

by p------- on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:49:01 PM EST
Talking of good and bad trips, I read this in the article I linked to above in reply to ceebs.

LSD was the drug credited with producing more of the best drug experiences, and more of the worst experiences, by the survey groups. The best experiences commonly reported included tripping in a good environment (setting) such as the open air or festivals, spiritual insights and self-awareness, weird/out of this world experiences, a good buzz, visual hallucinations, intense colours, euphoria/bliss - a sense of well-being, religious or spiritual insights, increased energy and dancing, hilarity and mirth. Quotes included

            "At one with the universe"

            "Totally changed my life"

            "Try some and find out"

            "A personal voyage of discovery that I will never forget"

            "The greatest experience of my life"

            "Enjoy the psychedelic side of life"

The worst LSD experiences were bad trips in the wrong setting, panic, paranoia, frightening nightmares, taking too much, losing control, confusion, "head fucked", being too young or unprepared, quotes included:

            "Friend turned into beast"

            "Friends were werewolves"

            "Walked into barbed wire"

            "Too young for such confusion"

            "Too young to deal with ego being destroyed"

            "Lots of bugs and insects for 30 seconds"

            "Drives you mad long term"

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.
by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 04:55:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You can now add my personal quotes:

  • "Where's my key?"
  • "Who stopped time?"
  • "Who's the traitor here?"
by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 05:36:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
as all the 60's research papers say, the important thing is "scene and setting". being warm and dry with people you trust is important.

some people I used to knock around with during the 80's swore by Acid and used to say that mushrooms were the fast train to a bad trip. Others were of entirely the opposite point of view.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:25:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This stuff sounds like how you talk ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:08:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Uhm, what?

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -Voltaire
by p------- on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:35:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It came out how I imagine you talk, as opposed to how you write, if that makes any sense...

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 07:34:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh, I see. I guess I'm not usually aware that there is a difference...  But there must be.  We don't often get a chance to edit what we say.  And being mildly hungover and thoroughly exhausted, I guess I've let my literary guard down.  :)

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -Voltaire
by p------- on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 07:43:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think I unsuccessfully tried to sell Mig on the benefits of hallucinogens once.

Interesting idea. But I so don't think the world is ready for this.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Oct 1st, 2006 at 06:21:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]

the opposite may also be true...

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 03:50:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Great diary, rg!

I'll get back to the image-hosting question later. I'd like to find the best place to do this on the Web. Others may have suggestions about this, gratefully received!

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 05:27:01 AM EST
First, everyone take a quintuple dose of PCP.

If there are the normal rate of allergic reactions, the web will be destroyed by the resultant violence.

Not to worry.

Then you can go back to trippin.

Enjoy the trip!

"When the abyss stares at me, it wets its pants." Brian Hopkins

by EricC on Mon Oct 2nd, 2006 at 11:40:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
quin-whatever dose PCP, me destroyed.


by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Oct 3rd, 2006 at 02:28:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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