Spiritual Drug Use; Practical UPG Guide
Hi! I am calling this a UPG post because, well, it’s my UPG. I have NOT been formally trained in any shamanic system or system of spiritual drug use. This is just my system of being a drug user stoner witch and shamanic practitioner for the past five years. So y'know we’re gunna start with some basics such as
DONT’ START DOING DRUGS. FUCK. DON’T.
Look guys. Doing drugs is NOT a spiritual “shortcut.” Trust me. Doing drugs takes as much time, dedication, pain, sweat, tears, and metaphorical blood as sitting it out on the meditation mat every day. Doing drugs one time will NOT guarantee you a spiritual experience, no matter what Experienced Drug Users™ tell you. In my experience even if a person has an instant spiritual revelation, it’s like a rare candy – 500xp. And that’s it. If you want to learn more and gain more, you have to do more drugs and yeah for some of us it kind of becomes a habit, and no one should erase the fact that for certain spiritual drug users the line between recreational and spiritual is incredibly blurred. And drugs come with shit side-effects. Shit. Pleeeeease trust me. Please do not start doing drugs. It’s not worth it. It isn’t. Plus it’s fucking expensive.
However, in the interest of fuck abstinence-only education, I am going to make a guide. Because some people are going to try it. And I’m not going to stand on the sidelines and wave to those kids as they feel blindly along, laughing and smoking on my pipe and saying “gosh I sure remember when I desperately needed guidance and none was to be had.” So I’m going to write this post :)
Since drug culture is often verbal and stoners and drug users learn through tutelary and initiatory sessions with more experienced drug users around them, I am going to write this post as if the person reading it knows nothing about drug use. This is because I cannot determine the experience level of anyone reading this, so I want to cover every safety concern that comes up.
Oh also, I have not been doing psychedelics and other drugs for decades; I don’t know a whole heck of a lot about the chemical interactions. All I know are basic dumb-person stuff that us regular folks really need to know in order to have safe trips. And that is what I want to share with you today!
Sooooo let’s get started, curious Seeker. I’m going to assume a drug (besides cough syrup and caffiene) has never passed your lips before.
Obviously it would be of huge help to you if you had an IRL friend experienced in drug use to guide you during every session. As equally obvious is the fact that for some people this is impossible. So I give you this short guide as a tea light in the windy path <3
WHAT DO YOU NEED?
You need a certain level of emotional competence. If you cannot control your emotions, acid may not be your drug of choice. In certain psychedelic situations, you need to have a certain control over your own state of mind. On the other hand, it is possible some drugs like marijuana will have a calming effect on you and make it more possible to gain spiritual understanding.
You will need a safe place to trip. You need to have somewhere pretty far away from negative influence. Like, hearing your family yelling in the living room is not an optimal location to have a mushroom trip. If you are comfortable in nature, nature is a great place to trip. “Comfortable in nature” means having the survival skills to reasonably spend a night alone (or with company as your situation allows) in the terrain you choose to camp out in. For fuck’s sake, please don’t drop a ton of acid and wander out in to the forest and get lost with zero survival skills. The trees are not going to wake up and guide you back. You are going to die.
If camping out isn’t an option for you, a very good friend’s house makes an excellent place to take drugs. Especially seek out a friend who is spiritual or very chill with your spirituality; a confidant whom you can tell anything to.
I encourage everyone to wait and seek out a very safe place to trip. You have no idea how much your environment directly influences your trip. You are not going to have a beautiful trip with nature when your environment is dirty, chaotic, and riddled with negativity and human negative emotion. It is very alright to wait weeks or even months until you can have your optimal time to trip. If this means a camping trip half an hour outside of town, great. If this means waiting until the most miserable member of your family is on vacation, great. Do whatever you can. For people tripping inside homes this means thorough cleansing of the trip containment room (your bedroom). In the days or weeks leading up to your trip, try to clean your room as thoroughly as you can. You really want to feel you are in a beautiful temple-space where you are ultimately protected and ultimately able to be creatively free. For people tripping in nature, go to the area beforehand and scout out the energies and spirits there. Hit up a couple of different campsites or locations and just see which place you think will feel best for you. Choose locations which will bring you comfort and relaxation. Don’t show up at dusk on night 1 and find a pissed off and very territorial spirit protecting the campsite you chose online.
You will need basic trip supplies.
Water: ½ gallon for every half-hour of your trip. Multiply by number of trippers on your session. Obviously bring more if you are camping as you should probably not be tripping 100% of the time.
Food; optimally vegetarian (the stomach does flippy things when it sees rainbows and meat in the same sentence), such as PB&J or grilled cheese sandwiches, fresh fruit and vegetable snacks, and vitamin-enforced fruit gummy snacks. Choose things you might feed to someone coming off a stomach flu. Nothing greasy or too rich. Very strong flavor sensations such as those found in sour candy might not be highly appetizing. Prep what you need to beforehand because you may not be able or willing to prepare food for a while.
A cozy space to sleep, whether this be a sleeping bag reinforced with blankies inside a tent, or a bed with freshly made sheets and fluffed pillows. Sometimes when you’re high or tripping you just… need to hit the blankies.
Basic survival (or urban survival) kit. A basic survival kit would include things like first-aid, a knife, emergency lights, etc. A basic urban survival kit is a small bag, purse, fanny pack, satchel, or pocket filled with the following items: ID/driver’s license, all the emergency cash you can muster up ($5-15 is fine if you aren’t intending to go out; $40 if you are going out anywhere. I like a bit of change on hand in case the bros all want to order a pizza, or in case I need to take an emergency Uber, etc.), a list of all the medications you take including what dosage, a daily dose of medication in case you are going out and can’t make it home on time, a list of emergency contacts who are very reliable, a pack of gum (you will thank yourself later) and a small healthy snack (you will definitely thank yourself later!)
Aphone. You need a way to access the outside world. I do not condone tech-free nature trips :P especially not when they are nature “trips” and ESPECIALLY if you are thinking of going alone. Take your phone, take it fully charged, and splurge on a mobile battery pack for it. $10 at Wal-mart. Support the beast to keep yourself safe.
Electrolyte delivery system such as Pedialyte, Gatorade, Powerade, etc. You will need this a couple hours in when you start to get dehydrated. 1 liter of Pedialyte or 3-4 bottles of a sports drink.
Shit to do. You are going to need some stuff to occupy your time with. If you are dropping acid I can almost guarantee you will lost interest in meditation well before hour 7 kicks in.
#DrugUserTip! The real fun of a trip is letting the natural high of your trip wax and wane. There will be times when you want to connect and be spiritual, and other times when you would rather be communicating with someone, making art, writing an article ( ;] ), or watching television or the starry night sky. Ensure you have planned enough to do to occupy your time!
Suggestions are: coloring books and/or art supplies for drawing or painting or whatever medium you prefer. Games, especially if you are going to trip with others; Cards Against Humanity is fun (nothing feels better and gets you more grounded out than feeling like a horrible human laughing at terrible card combos. Great game.), or a deck of cards, kinetic toys, a 3Ds, even a playstation or laptop for playing videogames.
You will need time.
You are going to need to do thorough and accurate research on the drug you are going to use. More on that later, but you need to reasonably know how much time this is actually going to take. If you drop acid for the first time, and it’s a strong enough dose, you may be in for a 12 hour ride. So if you drop at 10am and you have to work at 6pm… not a great combo. Leave the cool “Imma sneak in some heavy drugs right before work because I’m a cool drug user” decision making to the kids who like to show up to work high.
Optimally you will want an entire day afterwords to unravel and ride it out. No work, no school, no family obligations. Just you chilling out with some hot coco alone in your room, processing what happened and getting reacquainted with the world. I will say that I’ve never found this necessary for even the most intense weed trip and I pop right back up like a weed ;) in the morning. If not optimal, just try to get 15 hours between the expected end of the trip and your first obligation. You’ll probably want to sleep a bit between the two.
You will need to research your drug of choice.
What I’m telling you here is just basic shit. You actually gotta go out and look up websites and books and stuff that tell you things because you gotta know about them.
You gotta know what drug interactions you may have. You gotta. This one is not optional. We’re talking like you could kinda literally fuck your shit up permanently if you take the wrong drugs together, so don’t fuck around with it. Go find out your drug interactions.
You gotta have a basic understanding of what this drug is actually doing to you and your brain. If you understand the trip, it makes the trip easier to process, understand, and that makes relaxation easier. If you’re just like IDK WTF IS GOING ON the entire time it won’t be super enjoyable for you. It’s not like cracking a new novel for the first time without reading the back cover first. You’re literally fucking with your brain so???? do the research??? and find out wtf it’s going to do to you??
TWO WORDS OF ADVICE
Do marijuana first.
Look, I like weed. But I’ve never ever ever met an Experienced Drug User™ who recommended doing “heavier”, “harder” drugs first. I’ve actually brought this exact question up to many people and they’ve all said the same thing: start by smoking weed. If you want to have wild acid trips, mind-blowing mushroom journeys, whatever – start with weed. You need to have that foundation level of experience knowing what it’s like to be high before you go get really fucking high.
Consider weed to be the tutorial mode of drugs. A…. gateway…. if you will, to drugs. A portal to step through to get to other drugs. A drug door? If that makes sense?
Don’t do crazy shaman-only drugs. Leave that for the shaman-guided trips.
Skip the Ayahuasca for now. Stick to things we know a little better domestically. If you want to pay for a trip to Peru and sign up for a guided shaman drug trip, you do you!! But don’t try to prepare and do rituals that should be preserved for those with serious spiritual background.
PREPERATORY TIME – WHERE THE SPIRITUALITY ACTUALLY STARTS
We’re talking about a spiritual drug trip :) so at some point, the research ends. You know your drug interactions, you know how this drug is going to affect you. You’ve done your best to create the safest space possible for your trip, with lots of preparations like food and water in the works. Now it’s time to get spiritual.
You will want to fully cleanse before any spiritual drug trip. Unless you want to spend five hours intensely focused on the spiritual grime coating you, please cleanse. A shower will work great :) Scrub yourself from head to toe, starting with shampoo, face, neck, and so on, down to the spaces in between your toes and the bottoms of your feet. As you scrub, just be aware that as you cleanse physical dirt you also cleanse psychic dirt. They are connected; as you clean one, you cleanse the other.
If you want to be more ritualistic about it, here you go:
Take a pot holding about 1 liter of water and boil it. Whenever you add an ingredient, say the following incantation over it: “Spirit of Substance, I ask that you awaken and arise, and add your powers of Powers to my brew, so I may become ultimately cleansed and purified in mind, body, and soul.”
- Add three large whole bay
leaves or pieces adding up to three large whole leaves. Powers:
“divine cleansing and powerful uplifting vibrations.”
- Add a
teaspoon of any of the following: lavender, chamomile, lemon balm.
Powers: “intense calming.”
- Add two tablespoons of salt.
Powers: “wiping away evil.”
- Add a teaspoon of rosemary,
pine needles, or basil. Powers: “divine protection.”
Bring boil down to simmer. Stir ingredients with wooden spoon clockwise, focusing on how they blend together and form a perfect brew of cleansing, calming, and protective powers. Sooner or later (sometimes up to 15 or 20 minutes for me) you will feel the brew is “ready”. When you feel this, strain the brew out in to a heat safe container. Thank the plant remnants for their sacrifice and discard, but not in the compost (too salty!).
Scrub and clean your tub very well. Take a shower and wash yourself well. After you are rinsed and clean, turn the tub on to a comfortable temperature for soaking. Add your liter of witch’s brew to the bath water. As you pour it, ask the brew to infuse in to the bath water. Imagine your words touch the heart of this potion and speaks to all the spirits within. Soak in the water and let it cleanse you, calm you, and protect you. Light incense and candles in the bathroom if you can for some effective atmosphere.
No tub? No problem! Use a cloth or sponge to soak up the brew in the shower. Squeeze it over your body and pat it on your arms, torso, and legs. Sit quietly and soak in this brew and focus on the protection and cleansing you receive. Meditate to feel the calm.
Once cleansed you will want to place basic wards in the space you are tripping in. If you are in nature, why not a few nail crosses designed to keep away malicious and evil spirits? In your home, try brewing another potion. Use the incantation, “Spirit of Substance, awake and arise! Add your powers of Powers to my protective and defensive brew.” The three basic ingredients are cinnamon, cloves, and red pepper flakes (Powers: “fiery protection” for all three), mixed with frankincense if you have it, bay leaf if you don’t (Powers: “divine protection”). The purpose of this potion is to create a protective barrier. Create a very simple sigil meaning KEEP OUT MALICIOUS SPIRITS AND ENERGIES. When your potion is done brewing on the stove, use a paintbrush to paint large iterations of your sigil on walls, mirrors, doors, and window panes. ENSURE however the ingredients you have chose will not stain any surfaces first!!
Now that you are cleansed and prepped your space for protection, it is time for some relaxing journaling. Light a candle or get in a relaxed atmosphere and ask yourself what you really want from this trip. Is it communication? Learning divine truth? Trying to see spirits? Just hearing from the Universe itself? Whatever you are seeking, write it out. Write out questions as if you are preparing for an interview. Write out thoughts and what your greatest hopes are for this trip. Keep this journal with you to reference while you are high.
Right before the trip, the moments before you take the drug, do a ritual of dedication. This can be as simple as sitting cross-legged and closing your eyes and thinking, “I seek my highest good during this drug trip.” It can be as complex as a full ritual calling the quarters and announcing your intent to the Universe. Do what makes you feel comfortable. Here is a small example ritual if you would like one to reference:
Cast a protective circle. Take two of the following: a stick of incense, a candle, a dish of water, or an earthy stone. Sit in front of them and Name each as the element it represents. For example, “I sit here with this dish of water, which brings Water to my circle. I sit here with this stone, which brings Earth in to my circle.” You do not need all four elements present, this is only a simple ritual :) I think two is a good number but include all the elements you like.
Meditate with the good feelings these elements bring you. Surely it brings you a feeling of calm when you may be nervous about taking a serious drug. When you are ready, say,
“Element of Element, I brought you here today so you could support me and protect me during my trip. I am seeking a spiritual journey, and I want your guidance and support during this time.” Repeat this for each element. Speak to them honestly; tell them about your worries and fears. Get your anxieties out. Tell them about what you hope to achieve and what you are excited about!
When you are done talking, place the representations somewhere nearby. Ask the elements to stay with you, and if they are willing then you have a good valuable ally during your trip :) Erase your circle as you should no longer need it within your fully warded trip space.
ALRIGHT LET’S DO SOME DRUGS
Food and water? Check. All spiritual preparatory steps? Check. All physical safety preparatory steps? Check. Nothing left to do now but take some drugs, amIright?
At this point it basically becomes a personal experience but I can tell you some common things you may run in to and how I personally handle them.
Once I take a drug I usually feel a rush of nervous energy. I just strapped in for the rollercoaster ride and now, welp, I’m still sober and gosh that anxiety is getting bad…. some drugs, such as LSD or marijuana edibles, can take a long time to kick in. Do not take extra doses because nothing has kicked in after 30 minutes. You should know how long this drug is going to take to kick in for you. You should know how long you need to reasonably wait, even hours, to feel the effects.
I find that marijuana greatly increases the intensity and effect of every other psychedelic I take. If you are a marijuana smoker, try smoking weed to calm pre-trip anxiety and to help the trip “kick in” once enough time has reasonably passed for the drug you took.
Sometimes, laying down during a trip is really nice. But if I’m too high it turns in to a nightmare. If you are not feeling good, ask yourself if you are being very sedentary. Why not get up and move around? Try an activity like a coloring book or a simple task like taking a shower :)
Stay in communication!! Whether that be with your IRL trip buddies, your online friends, your spirit friends, your gods, the Universe… stay talking :) don’t go too deep inside your own head. Shit just gets weird in there. To me, the point of drug trips are the increased ability to communicate.
Doodle and journal whenever you feel the urge. It is quite nice to be able to reflect on your mushroom trip homebrew psychedelic drawings later on. As you practice being high, you’ll learn to write more accurate and concise reflections of your mental state that make more sense while you’re sober. Don’t mind if you can’t decipher your ramblings right away! It does take a bit of practice.
Allow your thoughts to carry you. Don’t trouble yourself with forcing a certain path. These drugs defy force and certainty. Let the trip take you where it wants to go. Of course you can guide it and stop negative thoughts :) but if you wanted to have a trip about seeing spirits, and it turns in to a trip about learning messages from your higher self, let the trip take its natural course. Don’t try and force it in to your idealized version of a trip.
If a negative thought does come up, there are some things I have trained myself to do: don’t dwell on it. When I trip, dwelling on a negative thought is like a freefall through the ocean depths. I spend just a few moments focused on negativity and when I’m ready to come out of it I realize I’m 20,000 leagues under the sea. So my trick is to squash that shit. Here are some methods I use to squash negative energy thoughts when I’m high:
- Put the thought in the
Vault. Just lock it up in that box in the back of your brain that
never opens and you can only teleport stuff in and it never comes
back out. Just boop, in the vault. Locked up.
- Put the thought on a leaf
floating down a stream, to be carried downstream to a very tall
- Obsessively think about
something else. Browse Tumblr or Reddit. Sketch. Talk to people.
Distract yourself hardcore and get fun and energized and kinda
dig the trenches for some good energy to flow back in.
- Chilling with plants is
DOPE while you’re on psychedelics, especially a beloved plant that
has been treated well. Chill with some house plants or a nearby tree
:D Try this if you are feeling anxious or overwhelmed.
No shame in hitting the blankie fort. Sometimes I get very over-stimulated. If you are feeling like input is too much, flop on the bed and put a pillow over your ears.
Try keeping lighting low to minimal depending on your comfort levels. Very bright lights just seem… harsh. It’s not fun. I typically do not prefer natural flame because I am very safety conscious while I’m high, so usually a dim lamp in a room is enough for me.
When you want to get started meditating, become comfortable and use your favorite techniques. Don’t focus too much on controlling your thoughts. Just focus on your goals for this session (you know, the ones you journaled about in the preparatory phases!) and let yourself relax, try to stay focused, and see what happens.
Drink water. Even when you don’t feel particularly thirsty. Switch between water and your electrolyte system. Don’t over-do it and get water poisoning, obviously. Just sip water regularly and drink electrolytes regularly.
Don’t double-dip. Eventually your trip will wear off. Don’t be tempted to take extra doses to make the trip last longer. It won’t work, you’ll waste drugs, and you’ll be disappointed. Even if you didn’t get your “guaranteed” full hours of trip, just let it go :) you got what you were there for! This just means more time to come down, get sleep, eat, and decompress before your responsibilities coming up.
You should definitely already know the come-down effects of the drugs you took. With a lot of psychedelics this can mean feeling like trash for days after. Combine this with a mental illness like depression or bipolar disorder and you’re gunna feel riggity-riggity-fucked up in a bad way, son. Get your support systems in order. These drugs are no joke and they will make you feel terrible under the right conditions. Hopefully you’ll be riding an amazing spiritual high that will get you through this time but in any situation, be prepared for the come-down.
There are things you can do to improve this process. In the days leading up to your trip catch up on chores so you have very little to do in the days following your trip. Prepare food ahead of time. Even trade shifts if you need to. Spend a lot of time with IRL people and friends, this helps take the edge off. Chamomile tea and other bright flavors and herbs will help “brighten” you up. Spend time in the sun. Get LOTS of sleep and lots of good nutritious food (your body has to rebuild all the chemicals it lost… needs good nutrition to do so!)
WAIT BUT I WAS JUST SMOKING WEED THIS ALL SOUNDS KINDA HARDCORE
Alright so you’re just smoking weed! Basically all this info still applies. Scale as necessary. You may not need such hardcore preparations and you won’t have a “coming down” phase.
Still prepare things to do. Still do a dedication ritual, a cleansing ritual, and set up protections. A spiritual drug trip is not the same as a recreational drug trip. You are calling and attracting and connecting with greater forces, and this does attract negative attention sometimes. So DON’T skimp on protections, even for weed. If you’re a lazy stoner mage like me, just permanently ward your room and have a few handy amulets you can carry with you when you need to go out. Easy-peasy.
Yep! This is all I got for ya! I hope this was helpful in a practical sense to anyone seeking spiritual drug use guidance. Again, I do not advocate anyone start using drugs. But as I stated earlier, I do not support abstinence-only education so this is why I have written this post :) I hope this can help keep at least one person safe on their journeys. Message me with any questions!