“At Boom Festival in 2002, I accidentally drank a water bottle with 120-150 hits of acid. Someone was giving out cap fulls, but it was accidentally mixed up with a regular one. It wasn’t until I started coming up that I realized what happened. At this point, purging wouldn’t have done anything, so I resigned myself to what was coming.

There were stilt walkers everywhere, some in elaborate gorilla costumes. At one point I had my head in my hands while I was losing my sense of reality. I eventually looked up and saw these ‘gorillas’ staring at me. I started to think I was a gorilla high on mushrooms. I thought my entire life had been a hallucination and I believed it. It was a true delusion. In a lot of ways I was relieved that I finally figured out the ‘truth.’ It was almost cathartic.

Later on I felt as if I were tracing back in time. I went back to my personal ancestors, then to older human populations, then to monkeys, and finally to single celled organisms. The Universe contracted, then it started going back in the other direction. As I traveled through biological evolution I got a good understanding of how close we are to most things that we eat. I went into that experience flirting with vegetarianism, but since then, besides what’s offered while traveling, I stopped eating meat.

One thing that experience taught me was that you can’t really trust your own senses. Your brain is building a model that we experience as the world. We believe it’s real, but we’re just filtering out what’s really going on. We are physical beings with a neural architecture that produces consciousness, and drugs interact with that. Because psychedelics can help you solve problems and expose you to a lot of beauty, I think people have a lot of misconceptions about them. The psychedelic experience isn’t magic. It’s chemistry.”

(Denver, Colorado)

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