Falling in love with myself – 5-MeO-DMT experience

I sit on a bare mattress in the center of an almost perfectly cubical room. Windows allow the sun to shine in through a mild and promising spring afternoon. Next to me sits a close friend, but today he is also my trip-sitter. I am going on a 5-MeO-DMT trip today, and I while I am not anxious, I am feeling a sense of jittery anticipation. I have heard several stories about the drug that is known as one of the stronger psychedelics. I have no idea what to expect, but my friend tells me “You can do whatever you like, don’t try to judge your experience as right or wrong, you can go and have a shit in the corner, or take off your clothes if that’s what you feel like”. Since the trip takes less than thirty minutes usually, I don’t expect to be going to the bathroom during the experience.

The substance is smoked in a small glass-bowl pipe. The 12.5mg of crystallised 5-MeO-DMT is placed in the bowl that is then heated. My friend holds the pipe and heats the bowl with the impressive gas-flame lighter. He has instructed me to conserve my intake of air and slowly inhale to allow for all of the substance to vaporise before I run out of space in my lungs. He looks at me and I nod, we’ve known each other long enough for us to feel comfortable with just that, and I feel as ready as I could possibly feel for something I have no idea about. The crystals begin to bubble and then vapour begins to swirl inside the little bowl. As the little swirling cloud thickens he looks at me and with a very serious voice says “It’s almost time”. I exhale completely and move my head closer to the pipe, he removes the finger that is covering the mouth of the pipe, allowing the vapour to slowly move through the tube. I put my lips to the glass and begin inhaling slowly, like I would smoking weed from a short pipe.

The taste is sweet and thick. It is a bit too hot to be very pleasant, but definitely not unpleasant or bitter. It is best compared to the taste of the hookah, but thicker – more substantial. I keep inhaling without trouble, and finally run out of space for more air. I exhale a little in order to get the last smoke in an extra inhalation.

I don’t feel a thing. But then after a few seconds it begins. It feels like a river, I notice it in my headspace first, but it quickly grows to a fullbody experience. My meta-selves retain consciousness and clarity observing the experience from outside. I hold myself with pre-programmed integrity-selves that – after this experience – I am sure I have crafted well enough to stand against any psychedelic. After a little while I decide to let go, to get the full experience and not treat it as an exercise in meta-self-programming. I notice my friend out of the corner of my eye, and I “see him”. I see that he is truly there. And then I fall back, slowly.

On my back on the mattress the river begins to strengthen and I loose myself in the flow going through me. I become the river and my sense of self completely dissolves into a sensation of pure naive pleasure. I meet the reason for my movement, I meet the reason for my whole being. I meet the thing that initiates all initiative and provokes all provocation. I am faced, not as a self, but just as an experience, with that which is me. It is who I am when I am most free, when I feel the most safe, when I feel the most liberated. It is the one who I am when I forget to be who I want to be. It is an eight year old boy walking curiously through a forest. It is a naive trust given from a source of curious sweetness. It is an unhurt child smiling at anything in the world asking “Hello, what are you?”. It is looking at the world without fear, without a self created to protect. It is the body beneath the body, it is the thing I have created a self to defend. It is a defenceless young smiling soul, full of love and curiosity for everything it meets.

My deepest and unspoken anxiety about the experience was that I would unleash a monster from within. I feared that a dark demon would come out, a devious, game-playing and cruel being. But instead this came out, this very “felt” physical river inside me, this bubbly young thing.

My body moves in a naive feminine ecstatic movements, sometimes almost orgasmic – yet too innocent to be erotic. I am completely taken away by this and I just wriggle in the pure joy of this feeling, sometimes mouthing a “Wow!”. This wow is at my own being, at my surprise at meeting this. And I fall in love with this being, this little river inside me. I fall in love with its sweetness, and I understand all who have loved me before in my life.

After a while I get a desire to experience other things, while still under the influence. I reach out to my friend and catch his foot. Initially eye contact would be too much so I just drag myself up to him, and allow him to hold me. I cry, I smile, I mouth “Wow!”. We stare into each others eyes for several minutes. He has tried it before, so he knows that I am going through something, but he is probably not completely aware what. After about twenty-five minutes we begin talking, and sharing the experience in words.

My experience remains with me. It is not one of “That was an interesting drug”, it is one of seeing myself. The most profound side-effect is that I can see who have love for me, and who does not. This took an understanding of love for myself, something most probably learn from childhood, but I had missed for several reasons. I already knew who had love for me, and who had not. But I missed it because I was standing in the way of this myself. My personality created to defend my little river, is all the river is not. It is often hard, determined, controlled and understand everything that is going on. It has everything figured out well before it happens, and will not change its mind based on experience.

Tasting the sweetness of myself made me believe that I was loveable, because I now loved myself. I felt a kinship with those who loved me, an agreement with their decision. I looked at those people in my life who had no love for me and thought “What am I doing trying to force love out of an empty box?”, I felt a strange twinge of “Well, you have no love for me, that’s clear, I don’t completely understand this. I’m really REALLY sweet you know?”, but then I also accepted that this was not their taste. People have different tastes and that’s only fair. I felt no compulsion to try to make those with no love for me somehow change their mind. I reached out to some and thanked all those from whom I felt love clearly. Some I reached out to and asked “Do you have love for me?” because it felt right to ask. Some I told “I have love for you”. But mostly I just felt that whatever anyone else feels, most importantly I have love for myself, and it’s a love I want to take. So the most important thing you’ll ever learn, is just to love, and be loved in return. The hardest lesson in this is that you need to do this alone before you do it with anyone else.

Big man – Little girl

We met in London the year before, and now she came to stay with me for a few days to explore Copenhagen. The visit had a calming effect on the both of us, and without any pressure we found our way into a soft and gentle interaction, because our desires were similar.

Our desires for interaction overlapped enough that there seemed to be an easy harmony between us. But again, this was not a harmony growing out of listening and adapting, it was the case that we both found that we wanted the same, and then I began guiding us into what I wanted. I was playing the leader, and she was playing the follower. But I didn’t know. I was under the impression that this was harmony, that this was sensitivity.

On the second last day of her visit we were cuddling and talking on the couch. I touch upon the subject of how men in our culture are rewarded for knowing what they want and expressing it, while women are rewarded for diplomacy and listening. This has been taken to a point where many women have expressed to me a difficulty in being able to sensing their own desires when among many strong-willed men. Men express to me that they have a hard time being sensitive to the desires of their less outspoken peers when their own needs haven’t been met.

My visitor confirmed this exact experience and we went into a deeper reflection on our experiences with this. During the conversation I got curious about whether she could feel what she wanted right now with me. I was interested in my own ability to listen in this particular moment. It is always a bit delicate to move from a theoretical discussion about psychology into the immediate experience. And when I asked her she wasn’t completely sure if my desires were overpowering hers. So I decided to try and turn down my volume. This is a very abstract act that I interpreted to simply being: Wanting less. So I began to tweak all my wants, desires and needs around her and this situation. I started to “want what I wanted less”.

As my own volume went down I started noticing that I slowed down. The conversation and the cuddling became slower. I did less, and I performed less. I was less driven in my movements and my desire, and more inspired by her needs and desires. I noticed that I didn’t need to perform, I could simply let her act and become a reaction to her. I went into a state of having almost no voice of my own. And then something strange happened to my interpretation of immediate physical reality.

Since her physical form is much smaller than mine, I had my arms wrapped around her so that I could touch my elbows with my fingertips. As my wish needs and desires diminished, I noticed that my physical size shrank with them. Not in the sense of the actual physical volume becoming smaller, but in the sense that I saw myself as smaller. She felt like a planet that I couldn’t even dream of moving. My intuition told me that if I tried to move her, then I would be moved. My touch became one of gentle brushing against a solid immovable object. My form was suddenly found within her space, rather than her within mine. I was engulfed in her area/zone/space and I was suddenly an explorer inside a vast world with many more details and inspirations that I could possibly imagine. I insist that this was not a feeling though, it was the actual impression of physical reality that shifts.

I had become a smaller person.

She says about the experience…

”I could definitely feel more space when you turned down your volume. I could feel that there was less of “your noise” (I’m not saying that in a bad way, I don’t find the right words right now) and so I could take the time I needed to tune in with what I wanted. Or in a way I felt like there was more space to co-create, like when you dance with someone and there is no leader or follower, you just move together and it creates something beautiful.”

Finding your sense of size

I understand that it is a bit abstract to talk about size. Noticing your sense of size is a bit like noticing sitting on the floor, and then noticing that you can imagine that you are sitting on the ceiling. Maybe you can imagine that you’re really not on the floor, and then look upwards and notice that you are looking “down” at the ceiling. What I want to convey with this is that sometimes we take our interpretation of reality for granted. This can lead us to think that it is fundamental reality, and that it cannot be changed. In the case of size I was surprised to see that the change was incredibly immediate and intimately observable.

What I mean by size is the sense of your spatial representation (quite abstract I know). Maybe you remember cringing when you feel ashamed, trying to fit into your sense of size? Do you remember growing in size as you felt pride? Thus fitting into your sense of spatial intuition. Your actual relative size to other physical objects is of course static, but your sense of relative-own-form-size shifts all the time. Normally outside of your control. Most of us feel comfortable in our own size so we relax and simply “fall into our body”. Some feel like they should be bigger or smaller, or experience a dissonance between their body shape and their body image.

Here I wish to talk about actively matching your size to those you meet. That means to some extend letting go of the hard link between your desired size, experienced physical volume and what I will from here on call your sense of size. That is the size sensed as you finally experience yourself. Perhaps it would help to take extra care to notice how people puff themselves up, or shrink physically. Notice when others make you feel small, and see that the word small here is not really a metaphor, but is actually a shift in your sense of size.

Listening instead of playing domination games

In my experience it is a magical feeling once two people try to match their size, in that both begin to listen intently to the sense of size in the other, and so balance their will and importance. If this doesn’t make immediate sense to you I suggest you to play a game with a lover.

Sit down with a person you are comfortable kissing. Now kiss the other with the intention of noticing exactly how they kiss. Do they use the upper lip or lower lip most? How much pressure do they apply? Do they chase you or do they pull back more often? Do they use the tongue, and how much, and how? Now that you have gotten a clear mental image of the way your kissing-partner kisses, both of you take a ten second break to think about it. Then you kiss your partner in the way they kiss you. See how it feels to you, notice what is different.

I came up with this game by accident in a restaurant in Lviv, with no intention of using it therapeutically, but have done so since.

The effect of matching our size means that no-one is more important. No desire or want is stronger, and so guiding and manipulating will become absurdities. That leaves a reliance on that which ‘just’ is, and in my experience leads to a profound ‘common experience’. An empathy with a shared experience that I believe is present underneath all other games. Usually though it is hidden away behind personal agendas. This empathy can become so strong that you will be able to describe intimate physical sensations in the person you are communicating with. My own intuition is that it is not really empathy, but a description of the same shared experience, as it is, seen by two beings at once.

If you find it hard to control your sense of size, I would start out by first controlling the drive behind your wills and wants. Just turn them down, shrink them in size till you want less. This in and by itself may be very hard for you, but you can turn to imagery like seeing your desires as an image in your mind and just making it shrink. I wouldn’t suggest increasing the potency of your desires to meet size. Rising up to someone is more like meeting a challenge, and I feel it is up to the one who is talking the loudest to quiet down rather than others to speak louder. I feel genuinely sorry for the loud person who cannot hear, and cannot hear that people are asking him to quiet down. Sometimes all we can do is wait in silence for someone to scream themselves hoarse.

The effects of matching sense of size

When you match your size with another person you will likely experience a sense of synchronization between desires and sensual experiences.I felt dissonances only when the other person clearly began either having an agenda, or instinctively wanted to be guided. Overwhelmingly the experiments with size have been received with a positive feelings. My sensual/sexual encounters especially have gone from being ones of desire and fulfilment to playful exploration of a common experience. Games of “what might he/she want?”, “if I say yes to this, do I then also have to do this?” and “I wonder if he/she really wants me?” turned into just feeling what was immediately in front of all of us.

There may many ways to achieve a balancing of intention, will and sense of importance between two people. In my experience balance was connected directly with my own sense of size. I ended up spending a lot of time experimenting with my sense of size and it has lead me to a very profound way of meeting people and recognizing and sometimes avoiding games of dominance. I’ve been able to meet people who felt heard and seen in a way that made them open up and share more of themselves openly. I personally believe that there is much more to these fundamental impressions about our physical being, and that they can lead us to a deeper understanding of our feelings and of being in the world.