In-between deliberations about whether or not to take Salvia one evening, I
was pottering about and tidying up, and as I went close to one of my plants it
snagged my sleeve, like it was tugging me. I took this to be an omen, so I
smoked some before going to bed.
In a way, the experience had a lot of familiar aspects, but I remember
thinking at the time, "how extraordinary!" I can’t quite recall
exactly what made it feel so extraordinary, but there are elements that
continue to spark in the imagination.
One theme is reality shifts. The idea that there are parallel universes,
similar in some ways to the one we normally inhabit, but differing in the
qualities of consciousness that inhabit them.
When one communes with a plant ally such as Salvia or mushrooms, one's
quality of consciousness becomes so altered that it becomes more appropriate
to exist in one of these parallel universes. The main difference in the new
universe is that consciousness plays a greater and more apparent role in
This could simply be a fantasy. While ‘under the influence’ anything is
possible, so any notion that takes your fancy can seem real. Ultimately we
return back to normal, and proving anything one way or the other seems
But my contention is that the reality we return to is also different.
Not as markedly different admittedly, maybe it’s more similar to ‘ordinary’
reality in direct comparison to the ‘far-out’ realms, but it’s different
For example, in Salvia-space you can easily experience things that seem to
be magical, impossible. This differs from normal reality, - ordinarily one
doesn’t experience everyday events as being either impossible or magical.
However, some reflection upon return reveals that one is surrounded by
impossibility. For one thing, the fact that you exist at all is extremely
On other levels too: I remember during my days at University thinking that,
although LSD provided no doubt wondrous experiences, I shouldn’t seriously
contemplate taking it for the rest of my life. It would be like doing
something artificial (that I justified only because I considered my
circumstances to be also artificial, - and beyond my control), when I should be
working toward something more natural and pure.
I may have been able to overcome this in time as being for the most part
conditioned guilt and taboo, but for mushrooms, not only to have appeared on the
scene, but to be there right under my feet, so-to-speak, seems almost
Likewise, to be sitting in my flat surrounded by these Salvia plants that
have come from nowhere to be so, well, accessible, suggests that
something very strange indeed is going on.
More than this, it seems that the act (or, if you like, the discipline)
of communing with these plant allies is part of the process that ensures these
reality shifts, that progresses us toward these magical realms, away from the
mundane, and the fall into physics.