Panic with unexpected rebirth
Type of Spiritual Experience
BackgroundBelieve it or not this is mild in comparison with some rebirth experiences
A description of the experience
Panic Rebirth, then Curious Exploration by lightware from EROWID
Previously, I had been very 'straight-edge.' I looked upon most illicit substances as dangerous, harmful, and stupid. Because the few drug users I knew in high school (the ones who made it blatantly obvious) did not appear to be the most intelligent people, I regarded this as because either the substances detracted from the intelligence of the users, or that only people with low intelligence would use drugs. Among drugs I perceived marijuana to be one of the least harmful, and I was even somewhat hesitant to accept and believe the current legal approach to criminalizing marijuana users. I had done some reading on marijuana, the ridiculous jail terms, the massive amounts of money being wasted in persecuting smokers instead of more violent offenders of law. Till then I don't think I ever really appreciated or understood what the effects of marijuana are upon a person's mind. Until then, I had taken most drug war propaganda as truthful or well intentioned. Today, I know better.
…..One day, while working on the computer, my brother told me he was going to smoke up and invited me to do so also. Although interested, I refused. He invited a friend over and they were both going to smoke. He came by two more times insistently inquiring whether I wanted to join them. So finally my curiosity got the better of me.
I didn't know then that marijuana takes a while before it begins to really affect you, unlike nicotine. So after taking that first hit, and not feeling the effects within a minute (holding it in for a minute, and then waiting a little bit after exhaling) I decided, well I better hit this again, harder if I can. I took just as large of a hit, and again held it in for longer than a minute (more recently I have heard that holding in the smoke longer than few seconds doesn't really augment the effect at all).
Boy, was I in for a ride!……. All I remember is the intensity of the experience, lying down on the cold linoleum with the dog excited above me, wagging his tail, moving around. I wanted him to be quiet. Laying down was not helping, so I got back up. I went back to the garage and tried to explain to everyone 'I am totally fucked up. This is scary!'
They took little of what I said, and being a bit of a stoic, I tried to hide my fear. The minutes started to feel like hours, my eyes became insanely dilated, it appeared like my vision became a tunnel, and I was growing distant from the world, only perceiving from deep inside myself. And I only felt like I was getting deeper. …
And it seriously *looked* and *felt* like I had crazy tunnel vision, was perceiving the world through a periscope.
Closing my eyes.... it was like a different world inside myself. Meaningless colors spawning ridiculous shapes, normal monochrome static becoming wildly gyrating chromatic confusion. Like submerging into the shapeless ocean of my mind. Whereas with my eyes open, if the effects could be compared to water, then with my eyes open I was swimming in a sea of vapor and thick mists. Closing my eyes was submerging myself into the condensed ocean of those effects. It was horrible, awesome, amazing, and larger than I could comprehend how to deal with. Yet I did not want to move anymore, full of fear, or go back downstairs to the annoying noises of others. And then I entertained the thought, what if I die here? Like this? In the depths of my own mind, so far removed from this world I love and inhabit? I don't want to die. I don't want to die. I'll do anything not to die.