It was with great excitement and mild trepidation that I lightly packed the bowl with the 10x Salvia; my palms were sweaty as my fingers fumbled nervously for the lighter. I was grateful for the presence of two friends who looked on with a mix of care and curiosity; T sat to my right, prepared to take the pipe once I'd inhaled, and A joined us via webcam from the other side of the world. Bidding my girls farewell, I lit the pipe and drew in as much smoke as I was able. I held in the salvia as long as I could, exhaled, and then followed up with a smaller puff. It was midway through this second inhalation that I realized something was happening.
Tiny dark green leaves began to grow along my laptop and table. My left hand, which had been holding the pipe, suddenly felt tight and I understood that vines were winding themselves around my fingers up to my wrist. A force of unidentifiable nature soon had me lying back into the sofa; I had the distinct impression that I was being invisibly pulled and pushed into the earth while a carpet of grass began to roll itself over top of me. I panicked for a fraction of a second but was immediately soothed by a gentle patting on my leg as T assured me I was alright and that I should just lie back and close my eyes. I do not recall T's exact words as she encouraged me to relax into the trip, but do recall feeling an instant calm upon hearing her voice and feeling her touch (I actually felt as though I snapped back into the sofa as though someone had pushed a button -my confidence in T's judgement felt absolute). I was also comforted by A's online presence though I no longer recognized that we were not all in the same room. In fact, I felt as though the three of us were in a forest; I had diffuse awareness of my friends as two kind and nurturing female entities (I have since dubbed them the mushroom nuns). I understood them to be gently planting me into the ground as part of some necessary procedure -Ah yes, I was going underground for awhile- I felt safe and loved.
When I closed my eyes, the hallucinations became much more powerful and when I realized what I was seeing, I burst out laughing. I feel unable to fully describe the experience as I cannot recall ever having laughed so intensely for so long! It was as though a whole world had opened up just above my shoulder and I realized that we (humans) go about our lives knowing nothing about it! This seemed absurd to me and so I began to laugh. Recognizing that I could not communicate my realization to anyone outside myself only compounded the humour; I felt as though I might never stop laughing!
What I saw were the silhouettes of numerous gnomes/elves who, without words, suggested that I go with them (where?). I was lying on grass and I perceived myself as large and awkward somehow; my sense was that I was stuck for some reason. I tried to wiggle free in an attempt to go after the little men/workers who were going on their way without me. "Can I go?", I asked aloud. "Can I go?" I did this repeatedly and, at one point, threw in "I want to go!" T gave me verbal permission to "go" despite being unsure whom I was addressing. Again, her reassurance steadied me and I made my best effort to get up off the ground (in this reality I remained on the sofa) but could not. I looked up and saw that the green upon which I'd been sitting was now layering itself around me like stacked rings; the tube-forming rings appeared to be made of air-filled nylon (reminiscent of the bubble/bouncy houses at amusement parks) and emerged in the alternating pattern of white and red, with smaller green elements I cannot identify. At one point, the layers had grown so high around me that I felt I was sitting at the bottom of a well. The gnomes were off in the distance now, walking along the top ring to wherever it was they were going (upon re-reading this bit and comparing it to the salvia elf reports of others, I have begun to question whether it wasn't the elves themselves somehow forming this tube/well). I felt disappointment at being unable to join them and returned to normal consciousness with their chanting(?) still ringing in my ear.
I opened my eyes and took notice of the glowing humanoid figure on my laptop; I did not recognize A who took the form of a golden hologram on my screen. "Are you a real person"?, I asked. Quickly returning to baseline, I laughed and began to speak with my friends about what I'd just experienced. Almost immediately, I noted that I'd been sweating; I was damp and uncomfortable. "I have breasts!", I exclaimed, taking notice of the damp skin at the top of my dress. I quickly explained to A and T that it just seemed unnatural somehow; I felt awkward with these "unnecessary" things on my chest. A deep sense of peace enveloped my heart, reaching upward toward my throat, and down into my pelvis. I felt profoundly relaxed and hypothesized that the prolonged laughter had reduced muscle tension and anxiety (When I decided to include Salvia in my journeying, I hoped to feel such positive effects but had assumed that such things would be the result of Spiritual revelation rather than physiological experience). The serenity I gained that evening is with me as I type these words three days later. It seems important to note that anxiety was not all that left my body during my visit with Salvia; for two days following the holy smoke, I was void of sexual desire (unusual for me). I suspect that the release of tension I experienced after smoking included a substantial reduction of the tension in my root chakra. Having read that Salvia is frequently experienced as an aphrodisiac, I was surprised. However, I've since read reports indicating that the sensual quality of this plant is best appreciated at lower doses.
Two hours later I loaded the pipe a second time. As I smoked, I was aware that I could never forget the unmistakable scent, taste and feeling of Salvia. T took the pipe from my hand as I struggled to put it down; I'd been turning it from side to side, never fully allowing it to rest on the designated pie plate. After the trip I recalled that I'd been trying to give the pipe to the person/being to whom it belonged(?) "Say something to ground me here", I blurted to T as I began to drift away. "I'm here", she responded. Closing my eyes I asked, "There's no man?"-to be continued...