What does it feel like to take beta-Carbolines?
But what to expect with beta-Carbolines? That’s qualia. It’s as challenging as describing to a novice what a psychedelic experience feels like, or what chocolate tastes like. Psychedelics have common patterns such as visuals and ego dissolution with psilocybin (e.g. this 2022 paper that assessed 6850 trip reports). But the nature of a subjective experience is exactly that: subjective. How do you answer the question “what is it most like taking” for someone who has never tried beta-carbolines before?
Subjective Psychoactive Experience
At Magi Ancestral Supplements, we are quick to point out that everybody and everybody are different. You’re unique and so is your experience. In other words, no two people nor experiences are alike. Your mileage may vary. It’s hard to draw a parallel between the sensation of a psilocybin microdose and a hero’s dose. To say it’s “lighter” doesn’t do justice to the difference in experience. But it can be useful to draw inferences down from the high dose (vs. drawing inferences up from the low dose).
For this reason, we publish this trip report of Haoma Revelation Aid, from the journal of a psychedelic experienced customer. Again, your mileage may vary. Not everyone will have (nor want) an experience as intense as this. An experiences as intense as this needs someone practiced with psychedelics, meditation, or inner work to integrate it. The author of this trip report graciously allowed us share it with the Ancestral Magi insider community, to provide a single data point of an experience on the extreme side of expectations:
Haoma Revelation Aid – Macrodose Trip Report
First and foremost, these compounds DEFINITELY have strong activity. I believe there are two influencers of this experience. The first is diet. Second is our own personal affinity to altered states of being, in combination with endogenous production of compounds such as DMT.
Sunday morning I woke up and at 11 AM ate a bagel with tuna fish. I also drank two energy drinks throughout the day. So although my body had likely processed those ingredients by the time I was ready to dose, it was not a full 12 hour fast.
The only other substance in my system was an anti parasite cleanse. This contains interesting compounds which might have influenced the visual effects: extracts of fennel seed, marshmallow root, black walnut hull, pumpkin seed, slippery elm bark, wormwood herb, clove bud, garlic bulb, oregano leaf oil and peppermint leaf oil, vegetable glycerin.
The night before I ate a sub containing aged meats and cheeses. I was concerned about hypertension as a result of tyramine and MAOI, so wore a wrist BP monitor which was helpful for peace of mind.
At 7:40 pm, I set my intention, opened the package, and ingested one pill along with half of a cup of water.
Within a matter of minutes I sense my mind is unlocking. I think it might be placebo as I don’t believe the outer casing dissolves that fast. But it feels very real.
Over the next hour, my mind is opening and sleep drifting in that fun zone between wakefulness and sleep as expected from an oneiric compound. I try to stay conscious but drift in and out comfortably. My thoughts are very free and loose, and I realize that I have the ability to clench and loosen my brain. Like it’s a muscle with 3D space and I’m navigating how to relax different brain muscles.
I had never thought of this concept in normal waking reality. But the brain is an actual muscle. Similar to how folks can control their parasympathetic nervous system to slow their heartbeat. We can use the mind to relax the physical substance of the mind. Meta!
Mind drifting has stopped. The strong effects subside after 60-90 minutes for most people, so I figure I’m on the way out of the trip and am quite pleased at the results. I feel hungry and decide to eat a snack.
At this point I began to feel a little weird with some nausea. Almost like the spins when I drank too much alcohol in my youth. I lay down and meditate on this “spinning” feeling.
It reminds me of the whirling mentioned in the Rune Soup podcast, but obviously different. The sensation is similar to disorientation from the planet’s gravitational pull. Like when you’re on one of those twirl a whirl spinning discs at the playground. Could this be an effect on our torsion fields?
I’ve been sleep drifting for a while and feel my presence returning, so take off my sleep mask, stand up. Immediately my visual field is incredibly distorted. I feel the energetic structures of light. When I move around everything seems to want to track, but is very bright and energetic.
Walking through doorways produces what looks like five doors made of light of varying size on my visual field. Shifting my eyes around and moving my head produces more distortion. It was intense enough that it took over my field of vision. This visual feedback was not good for my nausea, and I considered purging, but didn’t want to lose the food I had just eaten. So I decided to grin and bear it. I don’t notice any change in pupil size when I looked in the mirror.
The closest comparison to this level of visual distortion was when I took 2C-E fifteen years ago. This may be even more intense. Having a conversation with anyone was out of the question. And operating a motor vehicle was the last thing I could do. It was the most intense visual disruption I’ve ever had… and I’ve taken LSD and mushrooms over 50 times.
I laid down on the floor face down and found that helped with my nausea. Eyes closed helped with the light distortion. I had absolutely no closed eye visuals to speak of, which was a welcome reprieve from the intensity of when my eyes were opened.
Given all the unknowns about this experience and the fact that I did not read anything about the altered visual field, I began to wonder if ingesting unknown alkaloids was the most wise decision. Especially not knowing if my symptoms were hypertension. However, the blood pressure cuff indicated everything was okay. Even during this intense feeling and stress, I maxed at 130/70 with 70 bpm. Earlier in the experience, I was 110/55 with a 50 bpm. So it increased but I was still in the normal range. As mystical and spiritual as these experiences can be, Earthen medical devices can help with anxiety.
I laid there hoping the distortions would go away, buckled into my mind, and sleep drifted for a while.
At about 2:30 am, I come to again. I take off the sleep mask and am thankful that the visual effects have reduced by 85%. I’m thankful but also slightly disturbed, as they are still 15% present. 3-6 hours is when the effects fade, but I’m still visually distorted (an effect never reported or read about) over 6 hours later, so a little nervous.
However, I have my past to help frame this. Whenever I take a classic psychedelic, I trip for much longer than others. So I decide I’ll keep riding this out. The body is just a mechanism and it will process the chemicals on its own. And I feel better that I’ve had a reduction in effect. I’m in the “I just want to get back to normal” feeling I get when I take psychedelics. But I am interested to understand this compound again.
I’m a heavy dreamer, with lucid dreams on occasion. And I have a very high affinity for deja vu experiences, where I am convinced that I am remembering a dream I had when I was younger. Dreaming is the next frontier for humanity. If this substance can help us stay conscious as we enter that liminal zone between wakefulness and sleep there is potential.
I had one experience in my life where I stayed awake while going into sleep. My spine vibrated and I was flying through space. I eventually landed on a planet, where I went into a big bay and explained I was from Earth. The other dream person got mad/skeptical and said that was impossible. But I explained that I stayed awake as I was sleeping and then suddenly got kicked out of the dream.
Now it is 4:00 AM and I’m feeling mostly back to baseline. That was far more than I bargained for. Next time I will go into this with better preparation for diet before and after. And hopefully some feedback to know if visual distortions are expected or if that is a contraindication of something interacting strangely in me. I had read users on DMT Nexus report that beta carbolines on their own had effects, so I’ve always wanted to give this a try!
Thank you Magi, for your work.