Pretentious ravings of a seasoned psychonaut
After my post about my relationship with dextromethorphan and why I have chosen to use it at great personal cost, some have let me know I am being pretentious and self-absorbed. Told I need to get out more.
To those claims I say: true, true.
I do need to get out more. Want to know why I haven’t been getting out? I’ll tell you.
Just a couple years ago, I had a job at the Lansing Community College Writing Center. I worked there for two and a half years, which is gigayears longer than I’ve ever held a job before. I had deep and meaningful friendships, was well respected, and had never felt so societally on track. I experienced the greatest professional success of my life during that time, serving on hiring committees, presenting at conferences, and developing enriching relationships with every student I worked with. I was the founder and president of Students for Self-Empowerment, an organization committed to developing and practicing cutting-edge self-betterment tactics and teaching them to the community. I had an internship working alongside my mentor and role model, Jack G. Jesse, who is a pioneer of the evolving paradigm for treating chemical dependencies. I was certified as an auricular acupuncturist and behavior modification hypnotist. What else? Oh, and I taught yoga at a local community center.
Ten years before that, I was a junky strung out on cough medicine in his father’s basement, in hot pursuit of the meaning of life on dextromethorphan. I’d have dazzling epiphanies on that substance, and all my questions about life were answered. But hardly anyone took me seriously and I couldn’t seem to remember half those epiphanies in sober states anyway.
But I knew it was important. I knew in my core I was on a mission.
One day in 2006 while using dxm with my friend Ian Bulock, founder of Green Glasses Productions, I experienced total oneness with all of existence. I was everything, everywhere, everyone, in every place and in every time simultaneously. That was the one epiphany I’d never, ever forget in any mindstate.
I came to the theory that dextromethorphan has boundless potential for accelerating evolution and taking humankind into bold new realms of peace and prosperity. The chemical needs to be thoroughly researched by science so its properties can be understood and it can be used to facilitate a new era of harmony on planet Earth.
I know it all sounds ridiculous if you’re not ready for it. But over time, if I am right, this will be proven. And if that happens, it is not me alone who will benefit. It’s all of us. And if that’s the case, then no one person alone will get credit. Everyone gets credit. You reading this, no matter where you’re at in your mind with this, have played an instrumental role in this. Just by being you and living your life, you are a part of something monumental and spectacular.
Back in 2006, I became obsessed with telling the world the truth I knew… but the world wasn’t having it. In 2008, I dedicated myself to documenting dextromethorphan-related epiphanies and presenting them at Lansing Center. I envisioned a crowd of thousands. The Lansing Center presentation didn’t work out, but I did end up giving my speech at local new age bookstore called Blue Raven. There was only one attendee. Bless her heart.
My number one enemy became the social stigma against drugs, and dxm in particular (since it’s an active ingredient in an over-the-counter medicine which makes it seem so mundane). People just didn’t take it seriously, except those who tried it. Even I didn’t take it seriously before I tried it. I thought taking cough medicine to get high was the stupidest thing I’d ever heard.
But then there I was, a 27 year old unemployed guy imploring the world to see what he sees. Oh, and I claimed to be Jesus, which totally helped my cause (of getting locked up in a psychiatric facility).
It was around 2009 when I realized: I had zero friends, no job prospects, no hope. No dignity, no respect, no nothing. That’s when I decided to go to school and let go of my visions, which ended up changing my life in pivotal ways.
So, imagine going through all of that, and then finally building a promising life. Finally winning my family’s approval. Finally being acknowledged for my potential. Finally having career prospects. Finally having beautiful, healthy relationships. Finally “making something” of myself.
But deep in the back of my mind, I always remembered. The oneness. The prospect of using dextromethorphan to save the world.
Eventually, I became restless and dissatisfied with my life, and was pulled back towards the dextromethorphan rabbit hole. In 2015, I went all in, and had another experience of oneness with all things everywhere at all times.
And once again, I tried to tell the world. More people listened than did the first time, to be sure. However, incredibly and heart-obliterating rifts were formed between myself and the people who’d come to love me during my time working and studying at LCC. My family life fell apart. Every day consisted of strenuous verbal battles with people I loved dearly. In my heart I felt justified, and I was acting in love, but I was so overbearing that people were afraid of me. I deeply offended and alienated people who meant the world to me, and still mean the world to me.
Throughout this time, there was a guide inside, a radar, a compass, a voice. It told me I was doing the right thing. That through it all, I was on the right path. Daily, I experienced synchronicities and telepathic connections that indicated to me the legitimacy of my doings. I had journeyed too far down the path to give up, and I refused to let the world convince me that I was insane.
But the constant resistance took its toll. My behavior became increasingly erratic and rebellious, reflecting a concept I learned about in social psychology called reactance. Reactance is when your ability to choose for yourself is threatened, and you overcompensate with an even stronger expression of your will.
(As an aside, inner reactance is when you threaten your own ability to choose by saying you’ll no longer do something that you actually want to do, and then end up doing it with a vengeance. This is a key concept in developing a proper understanding of addiction and how to cure it.)
My erratic behavior got me arrested and eventually, I reached my limits and ran out of energy. Henceforth, I found myself on probation, unemployed, voiceless, in a pit of social isolation, buried in broken dreams.
You could say the reason I lost everything was because of dextromethorphan.
You could say it was because I was a condescending jerk to my loved ones.
Or you could call me an addict.
All those things could be considered true from a certain perspective.
From my perspective, I lost everything because I stood up for what was right regardless of the consequences.
The consequences ended up handing me my own ass to the point where I became too afraid to speak the truth I knew in my heart anymore. I wanted to forget the truth, but I couldn’t. There’s absolutely no going back.
Knowing a truth but being voiceless is a path to depression, anxiety, and a life of purgatory.
But if I couldn’t speak the truth anymore, but I couldn’t live a lie either, then purgatory was the only thing for me. An awkward, disjointed place between worlds. During 2016, I was nowhere. I was nothing.
Which isn’t completely true, but that’s how it felt most of the time. I refuse to ever experience that again, which means I need to build a life in which I can be the totally authentic expression of myself. A life where I do not need to hide myself, or try to be someone else to please others.
Isn’t that what we all need? Maybe a lot of us have given up on ever having that. Probably why so many people are depressed and sick.
The time has come to find and build my tribe. Get together with the people who understand, so we can stand as each other’s strength and promote one another’s creativity and success.
Yes, I can be pretentious. I can be condescending. I am working on being less so. Every moment provides a new lesson and a fresh opportunity to be a little more loving and giving than before.
For what it’s worth, I wouldn’t believe my claims if I hadn’t been witness to my own experiences. So, I am not asking anyone to believe me. I am asking those who already know that what I am saying is true, to reveal yourselves to me. Not just for my own comfort, but so that we can join together in unity and conspire together to heal this planet of inequity and injustice.
So yes, I need to get out more and be less self-absorbed. Volunteer in the community, and spend less time in my own head. The time I’ve spent in the shadows will serve the world well, and over time I’ll get better at saying that in a less pompous way.
Thank you for reading. If you don’t already have one, I encourage you to start your own blog so your voice can be heard as well. Everyone has a worthwhile story waiting to be told, and I would love to know yours.
‘Till next time, my loves.