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A guy claims peyote has destroyed his life.

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AwesomeUsername

Rising Star
Today I accidentally stumbled upon this trip report on erowid. This guy claims he was eating peyote two days in a row, the first day went fine and the second day he ate just a little bit which supposedly destroyed his life for the next 7 months or so.

Allegedly, he got psychotic and at the end he blames peyote for his break which lasted quite an unexpectedly lot amount of time.

Here is the report:


What do you guys think? I personally don't see it to be likely that peyote did this as an adverse reaction, it would be a much more likely explanation that the guy had some mental health risks before hand much like Syd Berrett from Pink Floyd did.
 
I believe that powerful psychedelics can make you mad if used improperly. whenever I hear someone say anything different I think to myself this person has never taken a heroic dose. psychedelics are nothing to play around with and should be treated with respect. This is just my opinion so don't flip out on me lol.
 
Running Bear said:
I believe that powerful psychedelics can make you mad if used improperly. whenever I hear someone say anything different I think to myself this person has never taken a heroic dose. psychedelics are nothing to play around with and should be treated with respect. This is just my opinion so don't flip out on me lol.

I get this, however this guy was psychotic for months and didn't specify if he ever went back to baseline or if he was stuck being psychotic. Too me it seems very unlikely to happen to a sane person no matter the dose which in his case was low already.
 
It can happen to a sane person too. I remember watching that documentary on Netflix two years ago about a guy who sees otherwordly entities and dead people as clear as day in front of him. It all started after he took LSD during a business trip to SF. He was just fine before that. And even after that happened to him, his psychiatrist said that he was completely normal, except that he could see those apparitions. He didn't exhibit the rest of the schizophrenic traits.

The guy went to many different new age centers and what not, without finding "a cure". At the end, he decided to get peyote (!) after fasting for 3 days with the help of a shaman, and there he had a vision which told him that the abilities he got were "normal", that humanity one day will be evolved to be like that too. He was just a bit too early in the line..
 
I don't agree. Even poster boy Terence McKenna lost his mind once. Taylor Marie was famous on youtube because of her ayahuasca use and she just lost her mind for months.
 
Is it fair for a heroin addict to claim that the drug heroin destroyed his life?

I don't think so, it's an excuse to avoid a deeper issue.. The problem lies in the person... Heroin was in fact, the solution to the problem, albeit, not a very good one.

Most people do not suffer serious and obvious problems, that lead them to serious and life threatening drug addiction. But no is exempt... it is part of the human condition. It has been said before, others simply have more tools (solutions) in their tool kit, than the heroin addict.

Many people can live on the brink, yet totally functional or "sane" by societies standards... Normalized living conditions, unaware of the unhealthy mental emotional and physical habits they have learned. I know someone who unknowingly suffered from Celiac disease for over 20 years, over that time the pain they experienced from daily living was totally normal to them. Only after they were treated for the disease and changed their diet did they realize how much pain they were in for so many years. In other words, The immense stress can go completely unnoticed, until it eventually propagates as physical or mental illness.
 
It seems to me a psychedelic couldn't really destroy your life unless your life was built on very flimsy premises. I hope this guy learns a lesson about his life and integrates it well.
 
I sometimes question the integrity of dramatically negative trip reports such as these. This probably is not a popular opinion because it calls into question the nature of trip reports we read everywhere online, but I personally can just imagine some intern at the DEA assigned to post horror stories about psychotic episodes resulting from different drugs.

I started thinking that years ago when I was reading a trip report of someone who ate something like 2 grams of mushrooms, and the person claimed that they started to see their friend crying blood and was horribly traumatized for months. It sounded like the script out of a cheesy horror film. I apologize if that actually happened to that person, but I don't usually buy the horror movie level stuff that appeals to all sorts of human fears (going crazy, losing children, becoming suicidal, etc.).

However, if there is even an inkling of mental disorder in a person or their family, I do believe it is rather unwise to risk their sanity with irresponsible or excessive use.
 
AwesomeUsername said:
Running Bear said:
I believe that powerful psychedelics can make you mad if used improperly. whenever I hear someone say anything different I think to myself this person has never taken a heroic dose. psychedelics are nothing to play around with and should be treated with respect. This is just my opinion so don't flip out on me lol.

I get this, however this guy was psychotic for months and didn't specify if he ever went back to baseline or if he was stuck being psychotic. Too me it seems very unlikely to happen to a sane person no matter the dose which in his case was low already.

Research HPPD.

...the positive side is that they almost always get better, even if it takes months.

Undiagnosed pre-existing mental conditions can be a huge factor in these cases, as can irresponsible consumption of these compounds.

The excerpt below is focused on LSD, though the statements ring true for all psychedelics:

The primary health concerns about LSD use are related to psychological health rather than risk of physical damage to the body or brain. As senior LSD researcher Dr. David Nichols, Distinguished Chair of Pharmacology at Purdue University and head of one of the world's top LSD research labs, stated in his 2004 review article on hallucinogens, "There is no evidence that any of the hallucinogens, even the very powerful semisynthetic LSD, causes damage to any human body organ. [...] Hallucinogens do not cause life-threatening changes in cardiovascular, renal, or hepatic function because they have little or no affinity for the biological receptors and targets that mediate vital vegetative functions."1 Deaths resulting from the pharmacological effects of LSD are rare to non-existent.

However, like all psychoactive drugs, LSD can induce cognitive and emotional alterations that can greatly affect behavior. With psychedelics such as LSD, there can be powerful and unexpected changes in thinking and perception. While under the influence of these drugs, an individual can exhibit poor judgement and delusional behavior, leading to accidents or dangerous situations. In those individuals predisposed toward certain psychiatric conditions, hallucinogens may precipitate psychotic responses or depression. In some individuals, long-lasting anxiety and/or depression may result from the unpleasant experiences and frightening visions that occurred during the psychedelic experience.

-eg
 
Again, relating to LSD, but it fully applies for other psychedelics:

Precipitation of Psychosis. LSD may have the ability to trigger psychotic symptoms in those predisposed to psychosis. This is problematic because psychotic or schizophrenic disorders most frequently manifest in those in their late teens or early twenties, the same age that use of LSD is most common. Individuals with a family history of schizophrenia or early onset mental illness should be extremely careful because LSD is known to trigger latent psychological problems. "Fortunately, however, these drugs do not appear to produce illness de novo in otherwise emotionally healthy persons, but these problems seem to be precipitated in predisposed individuals."1 This adverse event is apparently quite rare: as Dr. Nichols of Purdue University observed in 2004: "A search of Medline in early 2003 for case reports of LSD-induced psychosis found only three reports in the previous 20 years."

These are powerful substances that must be used with caution, care, and respect, and I feel there's this fallacy in the drug using community that these compounds can be taken lightly and used recklessly without consequence...

While mental illness is fairly obvious, sanity is fairly subjective...

who ever said "McKenna lost his mind" I'm very curious as to what you were referring to...

-eg
 
RAM said:
I started thinking that years ago when I was reading a trip report of someone who ate something like 2 grams of mushrooms, and the person claimed that they started to see their friend crying blood and was horribly traumatized for months. It sounded like the script out of a cheesy horror film.

I've had the cheesy horror movie effect from very small doses of fungi.

However reading the trip report it seems the poor guy has triggered a psychotic episode in himself, through psychedelics combined with sleep deprivation, that and/or he has ingested something like datura.

Either way, it seems that it is very common for those with schizophrenia to self-medicate with substances that are unfortunately the very worst thing for their condition.
 
Robert Bergman, MD, in "Navajo Peyote Use: Its Apparent Safety," _Amer.
J. Psychit. 128(6):51-55/695-699, writes:

"Some rough estimates of the rate of negative reactions to peyote can be
made. The Native American Church of Navajoland estimates its membership
at 40,000. This estimate may be high and there may be inactive members,
so we will use a population base of 30,000. Our informants report attending
meetings with an average frequency of about twice a month. Since this may
be exaggerated, we will assume an average attendance of only once every
two months. This would result in a total of 180,000 ingestions of peyote
per year by the population we serve. Assuming that all five of our cases
represent true reactions to peyote and that we hear about only half of
the cases occurring, the resulting (probably overestimated)rate would
be approximately one bad reaction per 70,000 ingestions."




I just fully read that "mescaline destroyed my life" report...I take it with a grain of salt.

This person lays the blame fully on mescaline and the NAC, taking little personal responsibility in the situation, and putting little effort into exploring other potential causative factors. This person also seems to have been under the false impression that there were no psychological risks involved with psychedelic compounds, when in fact psychological risks are really the only risks involved with psychedelics...

This person says "don't believe mescaline is safe" but when researched one will find it's actually one of the safest psychoactive substances known:
There have been no verified human deaths from mescaline ever, although K. Trout states that there is one unconfirmed (and unconfirmable) report of a person who died during military experiments with the drug, after receiving a 15 gram dose intravenously (or about 150-200mg/kg).

In experiments with rats, the LD50 for mescaline has been established in the range of 800-1200mg/kg orally.

Considering the human dose of mescaline is around 200-500mg orally, this means you would have to try very hard to take a fatal dose. It would be extremely unlikely to happen accidentally.

Again:

The primary health concerns about LSD use are related to psychological health rather than risk of physical damage to the body or brain. As senior LSD researcher Dr. David Nichols, Distinguished Chair of Pharmacology at Purdue University and head of one of the world's top LSD research labs, stated in his 2004 review article on hallucinogens,

"There is no evidence that any of the hallucinogens, even the very powerful semisynthetic LSD, causes damage to any human body organ. [...] Hallucinogens do not cause life-threatening changes in cardiovascular, renal, or hepatic function because they have little or no affinity for the biological receptors and targets that mediate vital vegetative functions."1 Deaths resulting from the pharmacological effects of LSD are rare to non-existent.


I also thought I would mention this again:
Fortunately, however, these drugs do not appear to produce illness de novo in otherwise emotionally healthy persons, but these problems seem to be precipitated in predisposed individuals."1 This adverse event is apparently quite rare: as Dr. Nichols of Purdue University observed in 2004: "A search of Medline in early 2003 for case reports of LSD-induced psychosis found only three reports in the previous 20 years.


--------

Misc. Info
Precipitation of Psychosis. LSD may have the ability to trigger psychotic symptoms in those predisposed to psychosis. This is problematic because psychotic or schizophrenic disorders most frequently manifest in those in their late teens or early twenties, the same age that use of LSD is most common. Individuals with a family history of schizophrenia or early onset mental illness should be extremely careful because LSD is known to trigger latent psychological problems. "Fortunately, however, these drugs do not appear to produce illness de novo in otherwise emotionally healthy persons, but these problems seem to be precipitated in predisposed individuals."1 This adverse event is apparently quite rare: as Dr. Nichols of Purdue University observed in 2004: "A search of Medline in early 2003 for case reports of LSD-induced psychosis found only three reports in the previous 20 years."

The primary health concerns about LSD use are related to psychological health rather than risk of physical damage to the body or brain. As senior LSD researcher Dr. David Nichols, Distinguished Chair of Pharmacology at Purdue University and head of one of the world's top LSD research labs, stated in his 2004 review article on hallucinogens, "There is no evidence that any of the hallucinogens, even the very powerful semisynthetic LSD, causes damage to any human body organ. [...] Hallucinogens do not cause life-threatening changes in cardiovascular, renal, or hepatic function because they have little or no affinity for the biological receptors and targets that mediate vital vegetative functions."1 Deaths resulting from the pharmacological effects of LSD are rare to non-existent.

However, like all psychoactive drugs, LSD can induce cognitive and emotional alterations that can greatly affect behavior. With psychedelics such as LSD, there can be powerful and unexpected changes in thinking and perception. While under the influence of these drugs, an individual can exhibit poor judgement and delusional behavior, leading to accidents or dangerous situations. In those individuals predisposed toward certain psychiatric conditions, hallucinogens may precipitate psychotic responses or depression. In some individuals, long-lasting anxiety and/or depression may result from the unpleasant experiences and frightening visions that occurred during the psychedelic experience

-eg
 
Interesting topic for me that I don't like to speak about but feel fine doing so on the Nexus, is:

I had a good friend who recently had a LSD episode that afterwhich he seemed a little off from.
He was really sensitive and believed all of the bad things going on in the world were his fault.
We tried to be positive, I invited him to go for a trip out of town with me for a few weeks
free of charge.

Before that happened though, he poured gasoline on himself and lit himself aflame.
He's been through 3 surgeries in the past month and a half... anyway after he torched
himself he called my friend to come pick him up and take him to the hospital and he was
still going on and on about some warped stuff and that was the reason he did it.

He's really a pretty awesome dude, extremely positive and done psychedelics many times.
I still don't know what to think about it - but hope I get to talk to him at some point
in the future (he can't talk right now due to smoke inhalation & lung issues).
 
A curious bit of anecdote. We probably have no way of validating the story but as mentioned, mescaline, particularly from peyote tends to be very safe.

Anecdotally, virtually all of my experience has been with peyote and I've never had an experience that was even remotely on the level of what was described. Peyote also tends to be self limiting as it's terribly difficult to ingest massive doses due to the taste, nausea and vomiting.

In fact, I'd probably recommend peyote if someone was considering an entheogenic experience with plant medicines but had fears about "bad trips" and such. Most of the complaints that I've heard about peyote revolved around the fact that the hallucinatory experience is often very mild compared to LSD or mushrooms. It tends to be much more calming and introspective for me.
 
Hammers can be used to construct or destruct. Blaming the tool is mitigating personal responsibility.

Due to the lax ethical standards of early psychological research in the 1950's (and the total sidestepping of ethics in the mk-ultra program) we actually do have a lot of research on the effects of these substances on people across the mental health spectrum and under all sorts of extreme and nefarious conditions.

The consensus, over and over again, seems to be that psychotic break is nearly 100% the result of agitating pre-existing conditions. Drugs are just one of many triggers that can push a person over the edge, stress is a far bigger factor than substances in almost every case. As an example, the psychotic states commonly encountered in amphetamine abuse are generally precipitated by the sleep deprivation and not necessarily the effects of the drug.

It sounds like we have a similar case here, taking multiple substances within the span of a few days, staying up all night doing ceremonies for a couple days in a row. As the research EG has linked demonstrates, this type of reaction to mescaline/peyote is very uncommon, and this fellow did have multiple other factors/stressors involved.

It does serve as a good cautionary tale, these substances are not for everyone. Even those who do have experience with them and pay attention to proper set/setting can experience psychotic episodes. Biologically, these substances are far safer than most of the items available on the shelf of your local grocery store, but when someone is already on the edge of mental stability, such perception challenging substances can absolutely loosen that grip.

Erowid's advice is key here: "Know your Body. Know your Mind. Know your Substance. Know your Source." I would also add, Know your Limits.
 
Before I continue with the story of the peyote trip that ruined my life, I must mention that 2 or 3 days before I took the peyote I had candy flipped (shrooms and mdma) which I have done plenty of times without any adverse reaction. This may or may not have contributed to the peyote trip, but regardless, after the candy flipping I was fine until the Peyote.
We complete the ceremony in the morning, and I am invited to another ceremony at a different location the next night.
So any way, all this shit all because of a little Peyote.
Uhm yeah. A little Peyote...

The Native American Church isn't evil. It is just misinformed. Peyote has very negative potential, and has been the most detrimental drug I have ever taken.
Wahwahwah... have some Xanax nearby the next time you trip. And don't stress your brain with continuous drug use.
 
I have ended up in pretty dark places in my life twice after very heavy, traumatic ayahuasca experiences. Ignorance is never bliss, but neither is having the cold hard truth of who you really are suddenly descend upon you. It has been months and all I can really touch is small doses of LSD. I don't want to have to face that again where I am in my life atm because I never wish to feel that lonely, helpless and desperate ever again.

These things can shake you up.
 
jamie said:
I don't want to have to face that again where I am in my life atm because I never wish to feel that lonely, helpless and desperate ever again.

We all have to deal with f.e. the fear of being expelled, isolated, being incapable of what so ever, stuck and lost. Face, accept and integrate all these upcoming ideas/fears and their resonating feelings, the experience is part of your wholeness and un-/consciously present in every moment. Let them all in, find a place for them and be aware of their presence. Bring all fractals together, to join the now with your full potential as a whole being. Otherwise you get stuck in trying to avoid the upcoming of any of your suppressed contents, which will hinder you in fully unfolding yourself (un)consciously in every now.


jamie said:
These things can shake you up.

Potential for evolution is only found beyond the imaginary border of our comfortzone.


Anyway, it is all same in value but different in the panorama.

tseuq
 
its not always healthy to re-expose yourself to that over and over again. There is a point where you just have to stop and go work on your life in the world.

Only you can really know if that is true for you or not. No one else can.
 
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