Amanita muscaria Anecdotes
Steven Pollock, J. Psych Drugs Oct-Dec 1975.
"When we returned to a friend's residence, we boiled six caps of various dimensions. Frank consumed two in his mushroom soup and I ate four (the usual dose being one to four caps). The taste was something like chicken. Curiously, I became nauseated within minutes but the feeling was fleeting. Within a half hour I noticed many peculiar effects. Audition became enhanced and synesthesias became prominent with multi-modality overflow. I began to taste odors, to small tastes, and even to hear odors and tastes. Visual disturbances were almost non-existent, but I noticed frequent recurrent gustatory, olfactory and auditory flashes. Tactile sensation became markedly enhanced. Occasional moments of nausea occurred during the first two hourse of the experience, but then the pseudo-delirium settled into a profound euphoric state of consciousness. Equilibrium was affected as by ethyl alcohol throughout the intoxication, but mentation in contrast remained unimpaired. After six hours, though still under the Amanita influence, I retired for a night of sound sleep. Frank experienced a state of wellbeing and restfulness without any nausea. He felt a sharpening of auditory, gustatory, and tactile sensations. While taking a shower during the evening, Frank seemed to taste cleanliness and he later slept well.
"A few days later we again tempted our fate but with dried Amanitas. I ate four caps and Frank consumed three. Each of us experienced a pleasant intoxication with only mild sensory alterations including subtle echo patterns. Frank did feel nauseated, however, for the first half hour, but the predominant effect afterwards was induction of euphoria. A nonintoxicated observer noticed no distinctive changes in our behavior."
"Studies of Amanita" J. Psych Drugs Jan-Mar 1976.
"On two occasions in the fall of 1975, I ingested dried caps of Amanita muscaria from Washington. The mushroom caps were eaten as `Amanita chips,' and were tasty. On the first occasion, I ingested the chips along with several grams of Psilocybe cyanescens Wakefield from Washington which had been estimated to contain at least 1 percent psilocin dry weight. The effect experienced therefore have no bearing on Amanita toxicity. On the second occasion, I ingested about 30 grams of the dried caps, and after an hour began to experience a very pleasant opium-like sedation with slight visual phenomena, similar to those described for Amanita pantherina intoxication, although of lesser intensity. I experienced distinct muscarinic effects, characterized by profuse salivation and mild perspiration. Three friends who ingested the mushrooms with me reported similar effects. The muscarinic symptoms were not at all unpleasant. Either these effect were due to muscarine in the carpophores (in which case Amanita muscaria from Washington must contain a much higher concentration of muscarine than is reported for European specimens), or they were produced by some yet-unidentified compound with muscarinic activity.
"Again, I experienced no nausea or other adverse effects. The intoxication was experienced for about five hours, after which I went to sleep and awoke the next morning with no after-effects. During the experience I noticed a rather profound diminution of coordination and balance, effects similar to advanced stages of ethanol intoxication. There were, however, no effects of clouding of consciousness or slurring of speech. One of the friends who ingested the mushrooms with me experienced slight nausea, but no other adverse effects were reported."
Amanita pantherina anecdote.
"In the spring of 1975, after completing the above survey, I collected some early specimens of Amanita pantherina near Tenino, Washington. I sliced and sauteed the mushrooms, and divided them into six portions, consisting of about one half cup of material each. The six portions were ingested by myself and five friends, one of whom ingested only half of a dose, the remaining half being ingested, along with a full portion, by another of my friends. All of us enjoyed the taste of the mushrooms.
"After an hour had elapsed, I had concluded that the dosage level was too low, and had retired to my home to build a fire and study. About 90 minutes after ingestion, however, while hyperventilating into my wood stove in an attempt to start the fire, I noticed that I was experiencing changes in visual perception. These effects became stronger over the next hour or some, and were characterized by sensing an `alive quality' in inanimate objects, wavy motion in the visual field like a Van Gogh canvas (no color perception was associated with the motion, however, as is so commonly encountered following ingestion of LSD, psilocybin, or mescaline), and mild distortion of size, distance and depth perception. Auditory hallucination were also prominent -- especially the effect, called `anahata sounds' of yoga, of hearing fine high-pitched sounds like bells and violin strings. I experienced only slight impairment of motor coordination and balance, such as would be produced by a small amount of ethanol, equivalent to two or three bottles of beer. In contrast to the effect of ethanol, however, there was no slurring of speech or clouding of consciousness. While I felt as though my conciousness was somehow removed and distant from the surroundings, I experienced a sense of great clarity, as I often experience following ingestion of psilocybin-containing mushrooms. It seemed to me that the psychic effect were emanating from the `ajna chakra', the so-called `third eye' -- a locus above and between the eyes. I experienced no muscular spasms, cramps, vomiting, or nausea of any kind. The experience was totally pleasurable, and lasted about seven hours. I was struck by the unique quality of the effect whereas I find the psychic effects of LSD, psilocybin-containing mushrooms, and peyote to be similar, to be, as it were, on a continuum of related experience, I felt the Amanita pantherina was distinctly different.
"Of my five friends, two experienced slight nausea, and only one felt drowsy. This person slept for about an hour, and awoke feeling refreshed. Two of my friends alleged that they had never been so high on hallucinogenic drugs before. One of these friends, the person who ingested half again as much of the fried mushrooms as I, experienced a complete dissociative reaction, and was unable to communicate with the rest of the group for about five hours. While in this state, he was periodically attempting to articulate his thoughts, but was totally incapable of communication. During this phase of his intoxication, we were talking about this history of Amanita muscaria and urine ingestion in Siberia. The subject in the dissociated state later reported the experience of vivid waking dreams which were related, through bizarre imagery, to the topics of the conversations we had been conducting around him. After about five hours of dissociative experience, the subject began to reestablish contact with the rest of us and within 90 minutes was fully rational, though shaken and frightened. None of us experienced any after-effects."
Yep, a night in the hospital in the most awful psychic agony I have ever experienced while they poured ipecac (SP) and charcoal down me 'cause the little bastards refused to let me puke. I was pumped. I was then hooked to a heart monitor and had the distinct displeasure of seeing my heart stop a couple of times. After one of them and a couple of firm thumps to my sternum I asked the doctor if I was going to make it. He was rather preocupied with saving my life and sorta muttered, "we don't know." They would not treat me with anything until the mushroom was identified which they did by flying it to a poison control center in Denver, I think it was, by Navy jet from Moffet field. They then shot me with something that had me down in 15 minutes after about six hours of mental horror. The next morning every damn med student and intern came by to find out what it was like. I didn't have good things to report. Your mileage may vary. The view I got of the human condition and the burried sadness, pain and agony in everyone around and treating me in the busy emergency facility may have been one very powerful sort of empathogenic halucination effect but it fucked me up for a long time. I have tried nearly every psychoactive even remotely available and nothing, NOTHING, has had such a negative psychic effect.
I was the sober person for a Amanita muscaria experience with some friends. They consumed some fresh mushrooms with peanut butter, as the taste was horrid. Nothing happened for a while. Then...they all ended up getting sick (vomitting). The illness was brief but violent and unexpected. That passed and the buzz set in. They described it as similar to a few beers. Nothing special, and certainly not worth the experience. They have not done it since and I don't think they will. Based on their experience, I would not recommend it. If you do try it, be careful.
: Of course y'all are aware of the Wasson's work on this subject...
: I have yet to hear an actual, personal report of anyone having anything
: other than a fairly hellish experience with Amanita muscaria... muscarine, ya'
: know. Not without some intensity mind you, but not at all the enjoyable,
: enlightening Soma of the religous literature. Perhaps the urine-drinking
: componant is crucial. No one I've known has done this.
This is NOT a first hand experience. When I was staying with some hippies at the Point of Arches in Washington State, they invited me to a party involving A. Muscara mushrooms, which invitation I declined. However, I was curious and what they told me was that the experience for them was rather pleasant and was something they indulged in with some regularity. This was in September of 1976.
Later, in 1988 in Port Jervis, New York, I talked to a friend who had tried A. Muscara once. He told me that the experience was very mild, kind of like taking a half a hit of decent acid. Outside of literature, these are the only experiences I have heard about. I don't really know what to make of them.
A friend recently ordered a quart extract of Fly Agaric from a company in High Times. He drank a full glass and didn't feel any effects. He paid $40 for apparently nothing. Wasson talks about a great spiritual experience by a Japanese friend who toasted the actual mushrooms like marshmellows. Anyone EXPERIENCED please comment.