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LIFE, THE UNIVERSE & EVERYTHING... According to D: Magic Mushrooms-Huautla.


My partner and I feel truly blessed and grateful to have found each other. From time to time, we celebrate our connection through a ceremony that involves medicine and nature. One of my favorite places in the Lower Mainland of Vancouver is Cypress Falls, a residential area accessible park in West Vancouver. It boasts a lovely temperate rainforest trail on either side of a steep canyon with a rocky riverbed. The canopy overhead is lush, with cedars, spruce, and Douglas fir trees towering above, while the forest floor is soft, clear, and easy on the knees. Throughout this magical ferngully-like wonderland, you can find mushrooms, ferns, and berries. The water in the river is crisp and swimmable during the summer months, with lovely pools scattered along the way. If you're adventurous and fit, you can hike along the riverbed, climbing a series of waterfalls until you reach the last pool beneath the 200-foot-tall headwater falls at its apex. This enchanting place holds a special spot in my heart—it's like a temple and a church to me, where I go to decompress or spend quality time with close friends and family. So, I decided to bring my partner here.

On this particular occasion, we decided to take 3 grams of Huautla, an ancient strain of psilocybe cubensis originating from Huautla de Jiménez, a small village in the Oaxaca state of Mexico. It's a potent mushroom with a long stem and a round, flat cap. Huautla mushrooms are distinguishable by their brownish hue and the presence of white dots spread around them, indicating their health and potency. Before continuing with our story, I must digress to honor the history of this mushroom. It has roots in Huautla de Jiménez, the home of the renowned "sabia" (wise woman) Maria Sabina, who introduced American ethnomycologist and banker R. Gordon Wasson to the Mazatec traditions of magic mushrooms. Sabina agreed to share her mushroom knowledge with Wasson, provided he promised not to reveal her image or location. Unfortunately, Wasson, funded by the CIA's MK Ultra mind control project, broke this promise and published her photo, name, and location in a book. This led to an influx of mushroom-seeking hippies to her village, false accusations against Sabina as a drug dealer, and dire consequences, including the murder of her son, the burning of her house, and her own ostracization from the community, leading to her eventual death due to illness and malnutrition. While Huautla is not the primary and most sacred mushroom in Mazatec tradition (they hold Psilocybe Caerulescens, or landslide mushrooms, in higher regard), it did make its way into Western culture through colonialism and cultural appropriation. We use Huautla for personal purposes and do not sell it or use it for therapeutic purposes to avoid appropriating from another culture.

To prepare for our journey, we blended our 6 grams of mushrooms into 2 shakes and consumed them when we arrived at the Cypress Falls parking lot. The weather was cool, and the forest had a slight humidity to it, so we bundled up and ventured into its embrace. Approximately 20-30 minutes later, the entire forest transformed into a moving pastel painting. I felt a childlike sense of wonder that I hadn't experienced in years. Everything around us was incredibly beautiful, with shades of green, blue, purple, and deep reds. I even jumped in puddles like a 5-year-old, completely awestruck by a massive Douglas fir that appeared to be nearly a century old. Around this fallen giant, branches were strewn about like the aftermath of a battle fought by gods. I looked at my partner, who was embracing the fallen tree trunk. She had a cat-like face, resembling a forest nymph mixed with the Cheshire Cat. A fine golden aura of sacred geometry seemed to envelop her bare skin, giving her a radiant and ethereal appearance. She exuded life and love, laughing as I pranced around like Tigger. Our progress on the physical trail was slow, but our inner journey was profound. Psychedelics often lead to changes in body temperature, and my partner, who was especially sensitive to temperature shifts, was feeling the chill of the forest along with the waning daylight. It was time to return to the warmth of the car.

I took her hand, and we began our slow hike back towards the trailhead. The full force of the mushrooms was starting to hit us, and the pastel colors of the forest gradually melted into a kaleidoscope of hues. I'm sure our gait was comical had anyone been there to witness it. At that moment, I became acutely self-aware and joked that we might not make it back to the car, even though I could see the trailhead and the car parked beyond. Nevertheless, we reached the car and warmed ourselves with some tea and the heat from our electric vehicle. Inside the car, I marveled at its futuristic appearance, feeling like I was in a spaceship far more advanced than the Starship Enterprise. We giggled at my childlike astonishment, and we reclined in our "interstellar journey," as the effects of the Huautla began to fade after about four hours. Being fairly experienced psychonauts, we thought the trip was likely coming to an end. I started the car, but we didn't even make it out of the park before the outside world began morphing into a warm hyperspace. The mushrooms were not done with us yet, so I pulled over. A second wave of incredible intensity washed over both of us. Sensations of overwhelming feelings rushed through our bodies as we sat pressed into our seats in the dark. Then, it began to rain. Raindrops on the windshield transformed into fractals and magical pools of light. I found myself breathing slowly and heavily as I stared into the darkness, where the infinite expanse of space revealed itself to me. Galaxies, stars, and planets swirled around me and rushed toward me. I remember uttering a simple "Whoa," and then I heard my partner mention she needed to pee but couldn't move. I went into "Dad-mode" and checked my mobility; my hands, feet, arms, and legs were working. I cautiously exited the car, made my way to the passenger side, and assisted her as she relieved herself.

By this point, it was late, we were hungry, less comfortable than desired, and neither of us was willing to drive in case the Huautla had another wave in store for us. It had already been six hours. So, we reached out to a friend. Trying to operate my phone while under the influence of psychedelics is always a challenge—the buttons seem to move so much. Nonetheless, I succeeded. Our wonderful friend, a part of our community, was more than willing to come pick us up. In fact, she had been journaling about us at that very moment. We left our car behind and joined her when she arrived. We enjoyed the warmth of her car and a pleasant ride home, feeling grateful for our communion in the forest, the mushrooms, and the support of our friends and community. And that was my first experience with Huautla. Until next time... That's life, the universe, and everything, according to me, D. Thanks for the fish.


We took 3 grams of Huautla, which is a ancient strain of psilocybe cubensis that hails from it's place of origin in Huautla de Jímenez, a small village in the Oaxaca state of Mexico. It is a potent small mushroom with a long stem and round flat cap. Huautla mushrooms can be spotted by their brownish hue and a portion of white dots spread around it — an indication of how healthy and potent this psilocybe strain is. As a historian, I must diverge from my story to honour the history of this mushroom, which comes from Huautla de Jímenez, a small Mazateca village in Mexico, and home to the famous sabia (wise woman) Maria Sabina, who introduced American ethnomycologist and banker R. Gordon Wasson to the Mazatec traditions of magic mushrooms. Sabina agreed to show Wasson the ways of the mushroom, if he promised not to share her image or location. Wasson, funded by the CIA's MK Ultra mind control project, broke this promise and published her photo, name and location in a book. This caused her village to be overun by mushroom seeking hippies, caused the police to falsely identify Sabina as a drug dealer. The consequences of which her that her son was murdred, her house burned down and she herself was ostracized from her community and died of illness and malnutrition. Though Huautla is not the primary and most sacred mushroom in Mazateca tradition, who prize Psilocybe Caerulescens (landslide mushrooms) in their ceremonies, it did come to us in "Western" culture through colonialism and cultural appropriation. Huautla is a special mushroom to us and we reserve it for our personal use and do not sell it or use it in therapeutic use, so as not to appropriate from another culture.


We blended our 6 grams for mushrooms into 2 shakes and drank them when we got to the Cypress Falls parking lot. The weather was cool and the forest was a little humid, so we bundled up and walked into her embrace. After about 20-30 minutes, the entire forestscape turned into a moving pastel painting. I felt childlike wonder, in a way I haven't in years. Everything was so beautiful, the colours were greens, blues, purples and deep reds. I jumped in puddles like a 5 year old and was in complete awe of a down douglas fir that must have been close to a hundred years old. Around the fallen giant was a chaos of branches and crushed under brush. It looked as though the gods had fought a battle in the small canyon. I looked to my partner and she was embracing the trunk of the fallen tree. She smiled, slightly had and held space for life of the ancient tree that now would have renewed life as a mother nursing new growth in the forest around her.


My partner's face was cat like, a forest nymph mixed with the cheshire cat. Over the bare skin or her face and hands lay a fine golden aura of sacred geometry. She truly glowed with life and love and she laughed at me as I jumped around and bounced through the forest like Tigger. We made slow progress on the physical path, but profound progress on our inner pathway. Change in body temperature is a common side effect of psychedelics, and my partner is especially sensitive to temperature change. On top of the coolness of the forest and the waning daylight it was time to return to the warmth of the car.


I took her hand and we slowly hiked back up and down the path towards the trailhead. The full strength of the mushrooms was beginning to hit and the pastels of the forest began melting into kaleidescope of colours and I'm sure the gate of our walk was laughable had anyone been there to witness our effort. I myself became very self aware in that moment and joked that we might not make it, even though I could see the trailhead and the car beyond. We made it back to the car and warmed up with some tea and the heat from our electric car. The inside of my car was the coolest thing I had ever seen. A space ship far more advanced that the starship enterprise. We giggled at my boyish astonishment of my spaceship. We lay back and basqued in the interstellar journey we were now on and then slowly the effects of the Huautla began to fade. It had about 4 hours and as fairly experienced psychonauts we decided that as there was little effect, the trip was probably close to completion. I started the car and we didn't even make it out of the park before the entire world outside the car morphed into warm speed in hyperspace. The mushrooms were not finished with us, I pulled over. A second wave of increible power hit us both. The somatic rush of overwhelming feeling rushed through me, her as well. We lay in our space ship fully pressed into our seats in the dark. Then it began to rain. The raindrops on the windshield turned into fractals and magical small pools of light. I found myself breathing slowly and heavily looked into the darkness and the infinity of space presented itself to me. Galaxies, stars and planets whirled around me and rushed towards me. I remember hearing myself say "Whoa," and then I heard my partner say she had to pee, but couldn't move. I went into "Dad-mode" I checked my mobility, hands and feet were working. Arms and legs too. I exited the car slowly and made my may around to the passenger side and helped lift her out and hold her while she made water.


At that point, it was late, we were hungry, less comfortable than we wanted to be and neither of us were going to drive in case the Huautla had yet another wave in store for us. At this point it had been 6 hours. So we called a friend. Attempting to interact with my phone when on psychedelics is always a challenge. The buttons just move so much. Nevertheless, I succeeded. Our lovely friend, within our community was more than happy to come collect us. In fact she had been journaling at that very moment about us. So we ditched our car and hopped in with her when she arrived. We enjoyed our warm ride home, grateful for our communion together in the forest, the mushrooms and our friends and community.


And that was my first experience with Huautla. Until next time...


That's Life, the Universe and Everything... according to me, D.


Thanks for the fish.







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