Salvia Divinorum was one of the rarest plants until recently, existing only as a cultigen in one location in Mexico. Salvia Divinorum was botanically collected by Wasson in the 60's, and is now readily available from several ethnobotanic sources as Salvia Divinorum 'Wasson clone'.

Traditional use of Salvia Divinorum

Salvia Divinorum is used shamanically in Mexico. Dosage is 6-20 fresh leaves, rolled into a cigar-like shape, and chewed. Effects start in 10-15 minutes, and include visual fixation (trance induction), detachment from the environment, a brownish orange cast to the visual field, and a distinct sense of being in a different "world". A tingling may be felt in the entire body, that grows out from the numbness in the mouth and eventually overtakes the entire nervous system. This is sometimes sensed as a vibration, and in high doses, may cause partial or total ego disintegration. Some have described this dissociative effect as having their body decompose into "energetic worms". Some subjects report sensing "intelligences just beyond reach", silently observing the user from a distance.

Salvia Divinorum: some concerns

An unprepared, unguided, or latently psychotic user of Salvia Divinorum may perceive these "entities" as either benign or malignant. If they represent an archetypal fear of the unknown, then the user may panic. An appropriate way to deal with this possibility is to assure the user that they will return to normal fairly quickly (effects last 60-90 minutes), and try to draw them into conversation, redirecting the subject away from their morbid fixation.

Salvia Divinorum: some effects

There are no known physical complications arising from use of Salvia Divinorum. Salvia Divinorum appears to be somatically benign, and is has been used to positive benefit by people choosing to explore their own consciousness. Salvia Divinorum provides a shortcut to mental states, normally only achieved by years of spiritual practice and meditation. As with most entheogenic substances, the typical usage is episodic, and usually confined to fairly short periods in the life of the user. A typical response is for the user, inspired by a view of reality unencumbered by societal acculturation, is to switch to more traditional spiritual practices, eventually abandoning use of Salvia Divinorum itself.



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Updated 4 November, 2006
(c) copyright 2006 / ZunZimla - Claire