Can you explain this?

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Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 4:38 am 

I have been meaning to write this post since I first joined. The reason I joined this site was because of an experience I had.

My aim is to try and understand what happened in my head.

I will give as best and full account of what happened to the best of my ability and if you think there is something important I have missed out please ask!

note : Any theory or analysis is welcome. I can only see this from my point of view so others are important to cover the patches I may have missed due to my on personal system of inquiry as to what happened.

In brief I had what I guess is best described as a "mental orgasm". Meaning no sexual desire just purely a non physically stimulating experience where my thoughts accelerated and I couldn't keep up with them.


BEFORE THE EPISODE

- For starters I am living in Vietnam and moved out here nearly one year ago. I guess some personal info is required so I'll just state that I first got the wanderlust bug around 6 years ago and have been planning to move here for the last 3 years but ended up travelling to SA for my friends wedding and generally was not, and still am not, in any rush.

- I came to Vietnam to teach English. On my way out here last year I had lots of things go wrong before I left England (eg. Lost bank card, nearly missed plane, replacement bank card was sent out VERY late.

- I did plan to travel to Sulawesi but due to bank ended up going to Vietnam to start teaching course ... managed to complete only first week then got sick and had to leave ... got a little stressed at first then decided to forget about it, as I had money in reserve, and just do what I wanted to do ...

SICK > Needs some explanation! Basically I tend to get migraines in hot and humid climates after 3-4 months. I am guessing this is because of my body temperature struggling to adjust. I do seem to be more sensitive to heat changes than most. It was obviously initiated by stress as well I believe due to the problems I had.
The outcome was I lost over 10kg and since I left England I went from 83kg to 67kg (at least 10kg was during and after sickness). It is worth noting 83kg is the MOST I have ever weighed!! I do also yo-yo a little with my weight as my metabolism is a little faster than most.
I also lost weight after episode because I simply forgot to eat and was VERY inactive.

- In this time I decided to tackle the questions I had pretty much left alone and eat when I wanted and sleep when I wanted.

- My diet was mainly pho bo (Rice noodle soup with beef or shrimp), banana cake, chicken kebab (not greasy btw!). Only thing worth mentioning is that I had some cannabis when I was sick to deal with pain and help me eat and sleep. I did smoke only when pain was bad (Pain lasted badly about 10 days on and off).

Other factors I believe are important to build up :

- I play an online risk like game. As I had decided to relax and do as I pleased I threw myself into this site to design complex maps studied the statistics involved in game play for fun. This may not seem important but I put a lot of time into this and based a map on a story I have been planning for about 18 yrs (on and off).
Basically in between thinking about the meaning of life the universe and everything (not literally but you get the idea?) I used to get stuck and then continue with playing my games and designing maps etc..
The episode started when I stopped thinking about these questions and decided to just have fun ... then 5 mins later it happened.


THE EPISODE

I will explain this as best I can but you have to understand I cannot do it real justice with words.

I was actually thinking about space/time/matter/energy and the pattern of the Big Bang and the formation of the first "piece" of existence ... the importance/existence of love and a few other things.

Anyway I hit a wall and just could not see a way around it after spending lots of time smacking my head against it ... so I admitted defeat and decided to draw my map.

As I was thinking about this and the story plan I had in place I was designing my novel/map on it happened.

It came in waves with a physical sensation like a tingle down the spine but most of the sensation was in my head pulsating out the waves. Some unconscious part of me it seems did not give up trying to answer the questions and then relayed that to my conscious sense of self (I am guessing but this is what I believe to date).

I really struggle to give a good full description here ...

The "waves" numbered maybe 4 or 5 maybe more ... the truth is my memory is not clear because the experience was too intense. I did not have answers to anything but I could see all the questions to ask and once asked they opened up more and more and more. Something like a chain reaction in my neurology I guess?? It could be best to say I chased the answer through many questions and lost my sense of self, reduced my ego enough not to be concerned with the answer just the excitement of the pursuit. As soon as I tried to hold an answer more questions flooded in.

I have no idea how long this lasted but I am guessing maybe 30 seconds ... although it could easily have been 5 minutes. As it slowed down my mind raced to the point that I could not keep up with it. I had to write it down but I couldn't find the words or hold a thought long enough to make verbal sense of it as I would have wished.

Oh yeah I had spend almost ALL my time for about 3 months prior as good as isolated.

During the episode I was lying on my bed with tears of joy? rolling down my face smiling from ear to ear with my bottom lip quivering with fear? I think this was the reason for the concept AWE, although any word cannot come close to describing this perfectly.
Other ways to explain is to say I felt every emotion all at once. I became happiness and happiness was no longer an important pursuit just a mere platform that helps raise my humanity.

One thing I will say dogmatically is that happiness is nothing once you become it. The real gift is the communication with existence. It did not make me feel happy or sad it just became me and I it.


POST/DURING EPISODE

- This is when a quick episode of what I guess can be described as manic/paranoid.

When I say mania it was internal not external. I was not running around or hyperactive just ALERT. The paranoia was due to the intensity of what I experienced and that I reasoned someone else on the planet MUST have thought the same thing as me and if so then WHERE WERE THEY!!?? Are they watching me!? Why has internet stopped working?

Luckily this paranoia didn't last more than a few minutes from time to time over the next few days because I reasoned that it didn't really matter considering the bigger picture.

The most puzzling thing about this all is the time involved. This was not over in a day! I felt like this for about 3 months ... it gradually faded but for 2 months I am fairly sure that there were maybe a handful (if that!) of people alive that felt better than I did for as long a period of time as I did.

For about 4-6 months I was the luckiest man alive but I couldn't share it. EVERYTHING look more vivid and real. I had no fear of death or anything. All I felt was an overwhelming sense of love and the need to communicate it to everyone ... sadly I had no idea how to show everyone they are blinkered and missing life.

I remember walking around the city one day and everywhere I looked I saw beauty. I remember starring at a crack in the pavement and some litter in pure rapture at how elegant it was.

I felt like everything was my child and I the child of everything. It is like being in a dark environment. You can see outlines and figures but until you actually turn the lights on you really cannot appreciate WHAT you are.

Worth noting too is that although I lost a lot of body weight and muscle (the lightest I have weighed since I was a teenager!) I felt VERY healthy and supple. In fact I could touch my toes which I could NEVER do before.


MY THOUGHTS

I have obviously been trying to figure out what happened and have come to these points of inquiry ;

- DMT (Dimethyltryptamine) > The most powerful psychedelic known. most living creatures have this in their bodies naturally. Descriptions of the effect of this drug taken artificially report sensations VERY similar to my own ... although it should be noted that my Episode lasted not for 20-30 mins it stayed for weeks! Also I did NOT hallucinate beside one instance where I was eating and a bug crawled out of my throat whilst eating and I chewed and ate it then realised soon after that it was not normal ... didn't freak me out at all because it was nothing compared to how I viewed the world.

Plan to take this in the future to compare the sensations.

- Mnemonics > This I relate to my idea for a story. I have piles of notes on this and EVERYWHERE I go it is at the back of my mind. This could have acted something like a mantra of my life. The story I have planned is basically fantastical and a metaphor for my thoughts or the mechanism of existence.
If not related to the story then the map design could have had an effect as I was thinking about complex patterns and strategies because that is what I love.

This is a biased idea because I have some knowledge of the history of mnemonics and believe it to be a prime motivation for the origin of organised religion.

- Sanity > I was sane and now I am insane again like the rest of you.

Doubt many would agree with this but you get the idea!

- Physiology > Not very well versed in biochemistry and nutrition yet (turns out no one is!) but due to physiological changes brought on by fasting this could be a key factor? Maybe when I ate well and replenished myself it inspired some kind of mental reboot?

Speaking a little on neurology I have found some instances in research where the amount of neurons the body produces is increased due to fasting because when starving the body has to find a way to eat so increasing the ability in brain power would help resolve the problem.


Anyway. That is it for now. PLEASE if you think you can explain anything here do so!

NOTE: I am NOT religious (in the commonsense of the word), patriotic (means the same as religious - If you do not agree it is because you are VERY patriotic), I question why people believe what they do (starting with myself) and I am NOT an atheist (No atheist is because everyone has a belief in their reality). If you want to take me up on these points please do so through PM or another post.

Thanks for your time.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Percarus on October 3rd, 2012, 8:59 am 

Hey Badger...

I am not sure what to say, the brain is one fantastic organism and it could have been a number of issues. After a prolonged period of social activity and then turning to isolation could have done a lot in regards to your perception of the real world. I don't think the drastic weight loss would have been a problem unless you are seriously lacking some key vitamins and nutrients. When a toddle I would experience certain 'mental orgasms' in which my very perception of time seemed to move erraticaly fast for brief moments, a trully disturbing experience.

I guess you can be thankful that you are back to normality, being within the 'normal' range is a true blessing that few seem to acknowledge how great it is - better than a state of delusion, however gratifying such experiences may briefly be. Don't stress is my advice, it could have been a number of reasons and trying to pinpoint any singular event can be an all too dear impossible task.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Serpent on October 3rd, 2012, 11:59 am 

That sounds like your basic epiphany. Brainstorm. Ahhh! moment. Road to Damascus moment - and for S/Paul, it lasted a lifetime. Siddharta, too, and Mohammed; Plato and Newton. It's described similarly, over and over, in the lives of prophets and discoverers, as the episode that set them on the path to greatness. When IT - the message, the vision, the insight, the understanding; whatever each one calls it, according to his cultural background - came to them. Really, what they did was synthesize information with ideas and passions they already had, but in separate compartments of their mind.

Why this happens at any particular time is probably different in every case. Fasting often figures prominently, as does solitude and fever. I suppose the body being enfeebled keeps it out of the way - i mean, not able to produce so many of its own kind of distraction. But i think mostly it's most importantly the result of: 1. much fact-collecting and filing and cross-referencing + 2. a long period of hard concentration + 3. solitude and dedication to a single mental focus + 4. a passionate quest for understanding.

Start writing that novel and see if the clarity lasts.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Athena on October 3rd, 2012, 12:16 pm 

First, I am honored you think me worthy of having something worthy to say. Second, have we lost our Muslim? I don't know if he would get, as human beings we have these experiences. I have had them, and so I don't think it is a big deal if someone else thinks God, or a messenger from God, is speaking to him.

I think it is common for writers and scientist too, to have such experiences, because we intentionally put ourselves in the creative mode. Yes, our brains continue to work on our questions, and seem to do this best when we are distracted by a game, or driving, or walking.

It can be hard to be satisfied with mundane life after having a transcendental experience. I think letting go of ego is vital to experience. For sure, we have to be tolerant of having our sense of reality shattered and having to rebuild it again. Welcome to the club.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 12:17 pm 

Percarus -

I guess you can be thankful that you are back to normality, being within the 'normal' range is a true blessing that few seem to acknowledge how great it is - better than a state of delusion, however gratifying such experiences may briefly be. Don't stress is my advice, it could have been a number of reasons and trying to pinpoint any singular event can be an all too dear impossible task.


This is not normality and I'd rather be back there than here. I was beyond happy and it was not a delusion THIS is the delusion.

Is was not brief. Imagine being so unbelievably "joyful" and happiness incarnate for weeks ... to the point where everything you looked at and everything you thought slowly started to make sense. Existence was pure beautiful art.

You know when you hear art critics? That was me and everything was art and NONE of it was less than awesome. I can still see what I saw then its just lost its life because I was truly alive then and now only the shadow remains.

Everyone would be better for this experience. If you had several people in a room with the same experience they could achieve almost anything ... the difficulty is holding the ideas that flood in. All I know is I knew communication was everything and that life is as relative as position. Just another label belittling everything else to make our egos grow better delusions.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby moranity on October 3rd, 2012, 12:19 pm 

good on you badgerjelly, as i said elsewhere, there is thinking about things and there is direct experience, dont analyse it, just enjoy it, it will happen again and again, not that i know anything about such things,
by the way, many people know of this, have experienced it, its no big deal, just part of life, it doesnt make one special in the slightest and really does nothing more than point the way, for instance the country you are in has a religion based on a deeper version of such an experience, but old habits die hard
Last edited by moranity on October 3rd, 2012, 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 12:25 pm 

Serpent -

1. much fact-collecting and filing and cross-referencing + 2. a long period of hard concentration + 3. solitude and dedication to a single mental focus + 4. a passionate quest for understanding.


I agree. What puzzles me though is why this didn't happen YEARS ago??

The only thing that relates to this is DMT or something similar to prophesy. When it happened my first thought, especially during momentary paranoia, was this must have happened to someone else ... then in history the obvious people who have had similar experiences were religious icons.

They came to their personal epiphany by an extended period in the wilderness and general starvation. I do believe if I was religious I would have thought I had been touched by God or some such nonsense.

I guess I am just lucky to have had this ... or more likely it is nothing to do with luck and something about me made this happen. My prime interest is figuring out the neurochem involved.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Athena on October 3rd, 2012, 12:42 pm 

Serpent wrote:That sounds like your basic epiphany. Brainstorm. Ahhh! moment. Road to Damascus moment - and for S/Paul, it lasted a lifetime. Siddharta, too, and Mohammed; Plato and Newton. It's described similarly, over and over, in the lives of prophets and discoverers, as the episode that set them on the path to greatness. When IT - the message, the vision, the insight, the understanding; whatever each one calls it, according to his cultural background - came to them. Really, what they did was synthesize information with ideas and passions they already had, but in separate compartments of their mind.

Why this happens at any particular time is probably different in every case. Fasting often figures prominently, as does solitude and fever. I suppose the body being enfeebled keeps it out of the way - i mean, not able to produce so many of its own kind of distraction. But i think mostly it's most importantly the result of: 1. much fact-collecting and filing and cross-referencing + 2. a long period of hard concentration + 3. solitude and dedication to a single mental focus + 4. a passionate quest for understanding.

Start writing that novel and see if the clarity lasts.


What you said is excellent, however, the effort of writing can block the experience! Or it can open the experience. I immediately related to explaining the experience as an orgasm. I am afraid those days are gone for me, but with the help of nicotine and caffine I would have these orgasmic often.

On the other hand, I have also had such an experience and then try to put it in writing and the analytical thinking of writing can destroy the moment! It is like trying to sleep. We can not force these processes. For this reason, I suggest having a recording devise handy. Mohammed and Cayce used someone else to record the experience.

We might want to work on automatic writing? That is the ability to write without having to think of the process. It sounds weird but the less intentionally think, the better. Intentionally gather information is for sure necessary, but then perhaps we need to trust and get in the flow, rather than work on writing something?

PS, I sure get the isolation part. My family and friends keep me so distracted I am not achieving what I want to achieve. It is really the pits when one of them sets off an emotional ordeal. I keep thinking of moving far away to be alone.
Last edited by Athena on October 3rd, 2012, 12:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 12:46 pm 

Athena wrote:It can be hard to be satisfied with mundane life after having a transcendental experience. I think letting go of ego is vital to experience. For sure, we have to be tolerant of having our sense of reality shattered and having to rebuild it again. Welcome to the club.


Nothing mundane about it. It is just perspective. Once you see something in a certain light maybe you cannot ever see it again the same way.

I was interested to hear your thoughts because I believe you approach things very differently to me. From your posts I feel a strong sense of ethics which I do not have because I have yet to get my head around what use ethics is to me (not going there yet ... another day!)

One certainty is the reduction of the ego. ESSENTIAL!!!

It was a sensation as much as a thought and a physical experience. The "shivers" I felt make be believe something chemical happened not some spiritual mumbo jumbo (not my mindset).
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 1:03 pm 

Athena -
On the other hand, I have also had such an experience and then try to put it in writing and the analytical thinking of writing can destroy the moment!


I can relate to this. When I had the experience the waves happened because I grasped at a logical explanation it was awesome and it slipped away and then hit me again when I tried to reason it out.

The Artist in me came out too. EVERYTHING was art from a crack in the pavement to leaf on a tree. Imagine walking around an amazing gallery ... that was my reality and it was closer to actual reality than human reality.

moranity -
many people know of this, have experienced it, its no big deal, just part of life, it doesnt make one special in the slightest and really does nothing more than point the way


TRUST ME. It IS a big deal! It is life changing and alters your sense of reality to what I believe is a more precise version than what we generally experience from day to day.

I am special. EVERYONE is special. Damn sure someone else could have done something more with this than me but maybe not? Maybe it starts to happen for everyone in their lives and some just ignore it and bury it in logic and miss the meaning? I am pissed I was too much of a coward or too over awed to push through further (then again I may have not come back? Somehow I doubt it though ... referring to DMT trials people have talked about this and they pushed through ... although those induced situations only last 20-30 mins and mine lasted weeks.

My life is to use this as best I can and figure out what I can from it.

Anyway PLEASE post any thoughts and offer explanations. There has to be science behind this and once that is found and used then nothing will ever be the same again for humanity. To say I am optimistic for the human race is true but it matters not a jot in the bigger picture ... plus we are, so it seems, overly optimistic by nature (MRI scans back this up VERY convincingly!).
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Serpent on October 3rd, 2012, 1:46 pm 

I expect there is a huge amount of science, but you must surely appreciate the difficulty of predicting, testing and measuring such a complex experience. We might have some inkling when to expect such Ahhh! moments ourselves (indeed, part of a shaman's craft is to induce them at will - though those would be brief, localized and specifically directed exercises, rather than life-changing revelations), but the neurologists or their subjects can't produce the experience on demand - maybe not ever, in a laboratory setting, or under observation. The most they can hope for is to study a person who reports such an experience - by when it has passed and the brain is back to normal, and of course their account is subjective, each unique in perception, focus, duration, imagery and language. Nothing to measure.

.... unless you volunteer to walk around with an array of electrodes through your skull, wired into a recording device. Didn't think so. Anyway, chances are you will have more of those episodes, though none will ever equal the first in intensity and sheer surprise. Even if the wonder is dulled by the process of rendering into communicable form, it seems - note the exercise we're conducting right here, added to your copious notes for a story that's been wanting to be told for 18 years - that you need to communicate. Sooner or later, that writing will get done.
Why not sooner? It wasn't ripe yet. Everything has its own schedule.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby moranity on October 3rd, 2012, 1:55 pm 

BadgerJelly wrote:TRUST ME. It IS a big deal! It is life changing and alters your sense of reality to what I believe is a more precise version than what we generally experience from day to day.

yes i know full well how it feels, very very much so, as i say, it's no big deal
BadgerJelly wrote:I am special. EVERYONE is special.

i meant, as you are probably aware, that all humans have this capacity.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby stuartp523 on October 3rd, 2012, 2:27 pm 

I had an experience maybe only on hundredth of yours. I had at best an average interest in music, I was familiar with a lot of the modern American music and ‘classic’ American/British rock, and just a little classical, and Enya was the only New Age I had significantly listened to. Music has rarely been something I listened to at the time, and lately I would go days without listening to any. I heard Yanni, the Greek composer, on TV and was just a little impressed, so I got a CD of his. I listened to it a few times and liked it a lot, but that was all. Then, that night, lying in bed with it on, I experienced that music like I never experienced music before. I think through contrast such as I described above I could have a similar experience again. I think contrast in all aspects of life lead to strange experiences, but the experience you described seems to need a huge contrast.

Everything that your brain/nervous system etc. did to create that experience must have been building up for a very long time without any of the ‘energy’ being depleted. For example, the issue of extreme socialization to isolation was used. I’ve experienced the worst of both extremes. From suffocating demands on my time to so little socializing that I once again felt like I was suffocating. Just after the first extreme ended I was able to engage in reflection almost nonstop for months and I didn’t want talk to anyone (I felt like I didn’t want to speak out loud ever again). After the second extreme ended I was able to talk to people or post online (I great way to socialize that I had overlooked for years) nonstop for months and I found it painfully difficult to engage in self reflection for more than a half hour every few days. I‘m sure if my brain had been scanned at the end of both those extremes even the most basic equipment would have picked up a huge difference. So the question is when would your brain have looked completely different than it would have looked if scanned during the experience you describe? I think thinking back on the previous five years of your life, before that experience, would be very useful; you should try to find all the contrasts you can.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 3:57 pm 

yes i know full well how it feels, very very much so, as i say, it's no big deal


Are you sure? Why do you say this?
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 3rd, 2012, 4:49 pm 

stuart -

Thanks for that. This is what I mean really. Someone else here has had a similar experience of isolation to integration and felt it lifted them.

Contrast is key for sure. I guess it is like initiating a near death experience without the threat of death itself. I am generally MUCH MUCH happier in my own company because that is just the way I am. So the isolation route is not really a big problem for me. Sleep deprivation is another route but could be dangerous in the wrong frame of mind. I think anything where you turn up or down the contrast too much is going to involve a degree of stress and when stressed things can snap.

I have a reasonable idea of the mechanism but may take me some time to perfect it. I have a few ideas to try that are a combination of what I have mentioned. As mentioned above by another shamanism is a good guide. I have a fair bit of research to do though and I am being very cautious what I read, or more importantly HOW I read it.

Shamanism, as far as I can tell, became religion due to overpopulation and/or cataclysm. Mnemonics play a key role in religious society and in our more modern society the media/advertising have taken up the baton. If this hypothesis is correct then our original connection with reality has been badly damaged by the social forces driving us on.

One thing for sure though shamanism will never go away because it is what we all are. We all have an innate human commonality that defines us as beings and this pattern has been repeated from continent to continent and culture to culture around the world and they ALL have similar or near identical rites, histories and passages regarding the shamanic experience and practice.

MDMA (ecstacy) is a prime example. The person whom made this thought it better to call is "empathy" because of its effect. Synthetic drug use is a lazy and brief glimpse IMO.

Also just remembered this :

There are LSD receptors on the pineal gland, and mescaline raises
serotonin levels in the pineal. Beta-carbolines accelerate melatonin formation,
in addition to their previously described property of magnifying
and prolonging DMT effects.

from DMT - The Spirit Molecule by Rick Strassman

This could be something like the chemical mechanism involved?

From Wiki :

β-Carboline alkaloids are widespread in plants and animals, and frequently act as monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI). As components of the liana Banisteriopsis caapi, the β-carbolines harmine, harmaline, and tetrahydroharmine play a pivotal role in the pharmacology of the indigenous hallucinogenic drug ayahuasca by preventing the breakdown of dimethyltryptamine in the gut by inhibiting monoamine oxidase, thus making it psychoactive upon oral administration. Some β-carbolines, notably tryptoline and pinoline, are formed naturally in the human body. The latter is implicated along with melatonin in the role of the pineal gland in regulating the sleep-wake cycle.[citation needed] The β-carboline can link to cerebral benzodiazepine receptors and induce inverse agonist effects to benzodiazepines, like convulsive, anxiogenic and memory enhancing effects.


I did forget to mention here that when I was eating and sleeping when I wanted I fell into a pattern where I was sleeping for 3-4 hrs a day in the late morning and this tended to shift around a bit depending on if I had enough rest in the evenings. Its 03:43 AM now where I am and I function MUCH better at night and always have ... it is certain this shift to a state of relaxation and "normal" (for me) sleeping pattern has a direct influence on brain chemistry.

Just found something ... later.

Thanks for the thoughts everyone VERY much appreciated.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby moranity on October 3rd, 2012, 5:46 pm 

BadgerJelly wrote:Are you sure? Why do you say this?

because old habits die hard, old habits of putting everything into boxes, of finding explanations, you are pulling apart a beautiful gift to see what it's made of, you will have this experience again, but not through any plan of action, definitely not through drugs. does that make sense? your monkey mind is destroying what you were given to try to understand it, when you know it can't be understood, so don't seek it, it will come of it's own accord. does that make sense? it is not an object you can seek, not an experience you can recreate, it is the basis of experience, what all objects are made of
it was when you stopped seeking that it came along
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Serpent on October 4th, 2012, 12:10 am 

Hey, Badger, you might enjoy reading Arthur Koestler's The Act of Creation. It's not up to date neuroscience, but he has a lot to say about the psychology and process. And it's a good read.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Gregorygregg1 on October 4th, 2012, 2:44 am 

moranity wrote:
BadgerJelly wrote:Are you sure? Why do you say this?

because old habits die hard, old habits of putting everything into boxes, of finding explanations, you are pulling apart a beautiful gift to see what it's made of, you will have this experience again, but not through any plan of action, definitely not through drugs. does that make sense? your monkey mind is destroying what you were given to try to understand it, when you know it can't be understood, so don't seek it, it will come of it's own accord. does that make sense? it is not an object you can seek, not an experience you can recreate, it is the basis of experience, what all objects are made of
it was when you stopped seeking that it came along

I agree with moranity. From what I see here, many have had similar experiences. Epiphany is an appropriate term. We receive as a gift the realization, that while the everyday "realities" we all experience are realities of separateness, of the ego, the reality we experience during this state of "epiphany" is a common reality, one of connectedness. Most of the people who frequent the forum have, at one time or another, revealed at least an intellectual awareness of this unity. More than a few have shared the "orgasm" of the mind of which you speak. Though we are hampered by language, we do our best to communicate with each other. I am convinced that the epiphany is the awakening of humans to the true self. There is great joy in the knowledge that we are not alone, but are self aware. Not of the egoic self, but of the universal self. I have read of the speculation that psychoactive drugs can induce glimpses into this state. unfortunately, it is reported that only through discipline of mind is it maintained. But even glimpses of the magnificence can change you forever. Of course there is always the possibility that people who have experienced this state of joy and love are psychotic. It is a psychosis I do not mind sharing. In the reality of the epiphany there is abundant Joy for free. My advice is to give up seeking, be aware of what you have become. The understanding that brings you can be of great value to the rest of us.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 4th, 2012, 4:00 am 

Serpent wrote:Hey, Badger, you might enjoy reading Arthur Koestler's The Act of Creation. It's not up to date neuroscience, but he has a lot to say about the psychology and process. And it's a good read.


Thanks I'll certainly look into. When it comes to psychology I am with Jung.

His concept of the archetype is genius. A concept that cannot be defined as the very attempt at a solid definition reduces the true meaning. His take on modern art is pretty much the same as mine too.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 4th, 2012, 4:11 am 

GG

My advice is to give up seeking, be aware of what you have become.


I will. It would be pretty daft not to continue what I have been doing most of my life though especially when I now have a broader perspective.

I am currently only working 7 hours a week so I will get into the habit of meditating and continue reading what I am reading and anything else that interests me.

If I am psychotic then so be it. I do no harm to anyone and enjoy life and puzzling about it.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby curiosity on October 4th, 2012, 9:57 am 

I believe that you have for reasons unknown, stumbled across a phenomenon that although known to exist is incredibly difficult to understand or replicate. There are cultures/religions in the world, where people will strive all their lives to visit the mental plain or state of conscious awareness that you attained. It is blatantly obvious that this state does exist and that the rewards for reaching it are perhaps like an H.bomb of emotion and realization exploding within ones head. Call it the quest for enlightenment, or whatever name you like. people from civilizations throughout the world have experienced it and tried to understand it, as yet to no avail.
The experience seems to leave the person in a state of awe and unfortunately is mostly construed as a religious one, I can understand that due to the witchcraft, voodoo and religious aspects that some people have tried to attach to this subject , no self respecting scientist would want to go there, you are going to have to work this one out yourself. Don't be afraid to explore this enigma. the answer is out there just waiting to be discovered. If you have the tenacity and the desire, you will ultimately succeed.

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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Paralith on October 4th, 2012, 12:12 pm 

Badger, did you get vaccinations for the diseases common in Vietnam before you moved there? And are you in a more built up urban area or more rural?

The fact that you were sick makes me wonder if this episode was brought on by whatever it was that was making you sick. Even if you were vaccinated you might have contracted some kind of parasite, of which there is a lovely (aka frightening) variety in the tropical parts of the world. I did a very brief search to look up parasites common to Vietnam and the usual symptoms of infection, and nothing stands out as exactly matching your experience, but there is a lot about parasite infection that we still don't understand. Especially if you are co-infected with a parasite and a virus, or multiple parasites, etc. I heard about a study once that suggested most cases of epilepsy in third world countries are caused not by neurological problems but by parasites in the brain.

Anyhow, I would suggest trying to look up people reporting similar experiences after moving to tropical regions like you did, or odd cases of similar experiences in people infected with diseases or parasites common to Vietnam. Even if there are such cases you may not find them but I think it's worth a shot.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 4th, 2012, 1:17 pm 

I did consider parasites. I say "sickness" I am fairly sure it was due to the change in climate. It has happened twice before ... it was just a migraine but a really bad attack. On the previous occasions the migraines were short lived and not as painful.

I am in HCMC and I have no vaccinations other than yellow fever. I have not been outside of any city since arriving in SE Asia so I doubt its anything exotic. My sleeping and eating habits have always been a bit erratic too.

Nothing points to a brain parasite but I am not qualified to say. I am fine now and in good health. If it is a parasite I suggest you get one ASAP! They're GREAT!!

Parasite or not my interest is in the chemical mechanism that had a hand in the episode.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby mtbturtle on October 5th, 2012, 8:21 am 

Hi BadgerJelly,

I would investigate the migraines more.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby BadgerJelly on October 5th, 2012, 10:26 am 

mtbturtle wrote:Hi BadgerJelly,

I would investigate the migraines more.


I will once I have learnt more about neuroendcrinology. I had my first migraine when I was a teenager and many people seem to relate hormones to migraines. The number of triggers though are vast and differ dependent upon each individuals physiology.

I am not optimistic that any progress will be made in this area unless medicine is tailored for the individual instead of the majority.

My personal opinion is that migraines are caused by neural pathways that trigger these episodes as a secondary effect. A certain number of factors will generate a reaction be it thinking about the colour blue or eating cheese. The triggers reported by sufferers are endless.

I watched something lately where a people have surgery without anesthetic ... this could be what a migraine is but instead of numbing pain the opposite happens due to involuntary/unconscious thought processes.

I actually have a migraine right now! :) Obviously it is not full blown just a hint of one. I have induced this by a combination of physical stresses including weight loss, smoking cigarettes and a change in sleeping pattern.

NOTE : Mainly talking to myself from here ...

Thinking about this I have always assumed the migraines when I travel are due to climate for two reasons:

1) After a few months abroad in humid heat I suddenly start sweating more then adjust to climate ... this is followed a day or two later by migraines.
2) I am very sensitive to temperature changes and generally my body tends to react slowly (eg. Walking around in shorts and T-shirt in England for a month after summer has finished).

Another factor I am starting to realise the importance of is sleeping patterns in relation to daylight hours. The simple shift to my body clock could be the reason. Kind of like a delayed jet lag. This holds up to reason because when I went the correct way around the world, east to west, the migraines were negligible ... but again this also ties into climate because I landed in Argentina and then went through Chile and Bolvia (Not exactly humid and hot climates where I was ... then I went into the Amazon trekked for 6 days HARD! Many factors here could have lessened any migraine effect including a shorter time difference to SA and then to Australia, Altitude in Bolivia, physical activity.

Anyway the cause of migraines is something many people are interested in. Medicines main concern seems to be with treating symptoms than it does with finding the cause ... which is understandable due to the complexity and variety within this subject and of course the greed of certain drug manufacturers.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby mtbturtle on October 5th, 2012, 11:38 am 

BadgerJelly,

I have migraines. Good luck figuring out your triggers. Change in altitude, flights, climate are among those people experience as well as just about everything else under the sun so it seems.

They don't seem to have handle on what causes them, what's going on while they happen and many of the medications perscribed (originally for other things), seems are more happy circumstance if they work for you. Unless they become chronic, frequent or debilitating, a doctor probably won't prescribe anything. There are some meds like Imitrex you can try to stop one if you feel it coming on, recognize the warning signs (have auras) as well as a host of others to take daily if they are frequent, severe. It could take a while to figure out which one for you.

My comment though was more about the relationship between your revelatory experience and the migraines. There are a lot descriptions along those lines. Throw in sleep deprivation and not eating and it sounds like a mix ripe to make your brain freak out - so to speak.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby curiosity on October 5th, 2012, 3:04 pm 

Hi BadgerJelly, I am taking time off from my own project so that I can digest what I have uncovered, but my brain needs to be kept busy 24/7 so maybe I can be of assistance.
Have you researched Salvia ? There are plenty of videos on youtube and Wiki also has information about it.(Scroll down to uses.) apparently it is derived from plants of the mint family and is often used in incense, if inhaled the user will experience an intense but short lived trip . If you haven't already checked it out, it could be well worth looking at. Its a really long shot, but is it possible that you could have inhaled smoke just before your experience? This plant grows both wild and under cultivation in many countries so no matter how small, the possibility does exist.

Graham.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby moranity on October 5th, 2012, 3:23 pm 

curiosity wrote:Have you researched Salvia ? There are plenty of videos on youtube and Wiki also has information about it.(Scroll down to uses.) apparently it is derived from plants of the mint family and is often used in incense, if inhaled the user will experience an intense but short lived trip . If you haven't already checked it out, it could be well worth looking at. Its a really long shot, but is it possible that you could have inhaled smoke just before your experience? This plant grows both wild and under cultivation in many countries so no matter how small, the possibility does exist.

Graham.


a very experienced psychonaught i know had the most terrifying experience on salvia, describing grovelling in the sand before an emence stone god, a feeling of terror and total obsequience, in the most base sense. salvia is definitely a fellow who will kick back and show no mercy to those who don't treat it with respect and even if you do, it may still just be feeling nasty...

oops sorry, i misread your post and thought you were recomending salvia as a way to re-experience the ... experience, my apologies curiosity
Last edited by moranity on October 5th, 2012, 3:26 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby Watson on October 5th, 2012, 3:25 pm 

I thought it was something akin to weed?
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Re: Can you explain this?

Postby moranity on October 5th, 2012, 3:28 pm 

it's one of those drugs that you have to ingest a specific amount within a specific time to achieve the proper result, it also needs to be burned at a high temperature, if this is not done, the effects are very mild, not like cannabis, but of a simular intensity to a mild smoke
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