A safe psychedelic journey, how do you do that?
Below you find information about the effects, risks and ways to minimize the risks and experience the best possible experience.
Possible positive and negative effects while traveling:
- Enhanced pleasant feelings and sensations
- You are freed from the usual (unconscious or conscious) blockages, holding you back from living your highest truth
- You can see yourself and the world in another light, leading to new insights and experiences of intens love
- Change in sensory perception (hallucinations). Colors, sounds and shapes become more intense and/or sharper, seeing moving patterns, structures or colored images. These images can be seen with eyes closed as well.
- Laughing (Laugh kick)
- Music sounds, otherwise, deeper, more immersive
- Objects etc. deforming, seeing waves
- Altered perception of time and space
- Feeling like the world is fake
- Immerse in Thoughts
- A relaxed, cheerful, energetic, high feeling
- Experiencing feelings that you are not normally aware of.
- Thirst, dry mouth
- Warm or cold feeling
- Hard to concentrate
- Unusual or strange thoughts
- Fearful trips, violent, painful feelings, fear that the effects will stay for ever.
- Distress, a confused feeling
- Less control over emotions and behaviors
- Psychotic reaction
- Sporadically preventing lasting perceptual changes, “persistent and disturbing changes in perception, mainly in the visual system, which persist from weeks to years after use.”
- Stomach and intestinal complaints
- Slight increase in heart rate and increase in blood pressure
What is a bad trip?
A bad trip is defined differently among people. Basically there are two types of bad trips.
Undesired feelings, images or emotions
Number one is the bad trip where you get in contact with unpleasant emotions/ feelings and are not ready to let them be. Feelings of fear, sadness, guilt, anger, disgust or shame or images that induce such feelings. This in itself is not a problem and will not necessarily lead to a ‘bad trip’. Within the body-mind system energy is locked up, we normally push such unpleasant feelings away. The magic truffles help you to release these pockets of low frequency energy. This is the medical value of psilocybin. If you resist these images and feelings though, they become more intense. So you achieve exactly the opposite of what you wanted. Your fight with that part of yourself that needs loving and accepting attention to be released can be very unpleasant and this is called a ‘bad trip’.
Feeling vulnerable and paranoia in an unsafe environment (set & setting)
Number two type of bad trips also has to do with ill preparation, set and setting. This type results from feeling unsafe to begin with, being ill prepared in an environment which does not induce peace, love and safety. Also a dose which is too high and comes on too strong might overwhelm you and gets you into a place of panic. You need to feel safe enough to let go of control and to take the slide into magic mushroom land… Not letting go, trusting and enjoying the ride ahead can lead to panic and a strong desire to get out. With a lack of proper guidance by an experienced tripsitter you might get lost in the loop of wanting to get out of the trip, you see you can’t get out, fear increases resulting in an even bigger desire to get out, realizing you can’t and also fear increases even further et cetera.
Research on bad trips from the John Hopkins institute shows that for one third of the 1993 participants their bad trip was among the most meaningful experiences of their lives though. It can be difficult, but usually very fruitful as well. Despite difficulties, 84% endorsed benefiting from the experience. It is especially a bad trip if you had expectations of only laughter, fun, love, feelings of inner strength, oneness etc… all the goodies. Journeying is a spiritually and energetically cleansing experience. Therefore the goodies are either at the surface already, or more commonly they are experienced after the layers, which you usually keep away during daily life, are released and lived through.
What you can do in case of a bad trip is to focus your attention on your body, breath, soothing music or anything stable in the room that gives you support and calms you down, allowing the hurricane of feelings to be what it is, realizing it is just a temporary storm and staying focused on the body. Of course your tripsitter can help you with this, by holding your hand and facilitating the mindfulness exercise. What is also valuable is to witness the thought of ‘How can I get out of this trip?’ and change it to: ‘How can I make this experience as pleasant as possible? What do I need right now?’. Change your focus to things which are stable, to solutions, love and care for yourself and you will come back to a more peaceful place. Again your tripsitter can help you with this.
Journeying with mushrooms in combination with certain conditions can entail additional risks. Below is a (non-exhaustive) list of conditions important to keep in mind when considering a journey.
I have (a history of):
- type I or II diabetes
- anxiety disorders
- heart problems
- depression (truffles bring you in contact with your feelings, this is healing, but can also be extra impressive if you are depressed)
- I take medication / MAO inhibitors (medication can interact with the psilocybin and with it comes extra risks)
- I am pregnant
- Magic mushrooms are difficult to dose, because the strength differs. So there is a chance that the effects are unpredictable and more violent than expected.
- ‘ Stuck ‘ in negative thoughts
- Suspicion, the feeling that you are being pursued or that they are talking about you.
- Acute Psychosis: provoking delusion, hallucinations and anxiety. An acute drug psychosis will in most cases disappear if the psilocybin is no longer present in the body.
- Flashbacks: parts of the journey are experienced again in the period after use.
- Decreased capacity to judge well, for example in traffic (when the psilocybin is still active in the system)
- There is a small but present risk that the hours / days after one experiences after-effects, such as mood disorders (such as depression), psychosis / psychotic disorders, anxiety attacks, headache and visual disorders (such as flashbacks)
- The likelihood of addiction is very small. Within a few days after the last time of usage the effect is very little. In addition, a trip can be a fierce experience and most use it ones to several times.
- Psychosis: In people who are susceptible to it because, for example, it runs in the family, magic mushrooms may provoke or worsen psychosis. Someone with a psychosis has hallucinations and delusions and sometimes does not know what is real and what is not. It is therefore not a good idea to take psychedelics if you or one of your family members in the first or second degree has a current or earlier history of psychotic disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar I or II disorder
- Whether use of magic mushrooms can lead to brain damage is not known. Scientific research so far does not in any case indicate this.
How do you have a safe and pleasant ceremony?
You can never eliminate all risks, but through proper preparation and guidance you can drastically reduce the risks and have a wonderful experience.
Below you can find a list of things to think about:
- Make sure someone is there or is nearby, who stays sober and is preferably trained to help you in case you get into a bad trip or panic.
- Take your time and ensure a safe and quiet/familiar environment for a pleasant and safe trip. This is definitely necessary at a higher dose.
- Choose to make the journey yourself at all times. Don’t get persuaded by others, while you don’t really want to do it.
- Consider/discuss in advance how to cope with potentially emerging fears
- If you get anxious, stay calm: The nasty feeling is always temporary.
- Take truffles only if you feel good.
- Do not resist what comes to mind. Relax with what is. It usually helps to focus your attention on the body, the touch and the music. Eating or drinking something can help you feel better. Most important is not to flee, but to stay open to whatever comes… you are not in danger, it’s just a thought.
- Buy your magic truffles in a good smartshop.
- Do not combine mushrooms and truffles with alcohol or any other mind altering drug. That increases the chance of a bad trip. When combining with alcohol you feel the narcotic effect of alcohol less. There is a chance that you will take more alcohol than you did without mushrooms or truffles.
- Do not partake in traffic if you are under influence. After use, you still have a few hours of lethargy and lack of concentration.
- Make sure you don’t have to do anything important the next day. You can be tired after a trip.
- “Magic truffles are drugs and therefore very dangerous.”Mentally there are some risks as discussed above. Especially for people who have previously experienced psychosis or other ‘ mental illnesses ‘. Physically, the truffles/ mushrooms are completely harmless. Below you see the results of a comparative study:
- “An overdose of psylocibin can be fatal.” As far as the information reaches, it is known that this is not possible. There are no known cases that someone has died by too much psylocibin in their body
- “You can become addicted to magic truffles.” Research into human usage patterns and studies in non-human primates suggest that psilocybin possesses little or no abuse liability.
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