Pollan, Michael.  2002.  The Botany of Desire.  pg. 113-179.  Random House Trade Paper Backs, United States of America.

The depression up till this point began to eat up my life and I had exhausted all of my options. A lifetime of broken bones, broken hearts and broken dreams both filled and plugged the well of tears that was my heart. Up until the point that I became so desperate for a taste of tranquility from the torment of the moments of regret that ran over and over again like a broken record in my mind. They invaded my mind, my dreams and my life. This pressure squeezed tens of thousands of dollars from my already broke pockets and pushed me to a state of desperation that had me… depressed. depression. depression. depression. That feeling that blinds ones eyes from even the most beautiful of days, can spin anyones kindness against them and bleed the energy out of any situation. The silent cause of over half of all suicides. The silent cause of my near suicide. On the surface I was “happy”, I made people laugh frequently, using my sense of humour as a cover for the fact that if anyone said the wrong thing I might snap on them in yet another attempt at self sabotage. I said “fuck it” more times than I care to admit. Then the day came where I read an article that described the potential benefits of magic mushrooms in the treatment of depression so I decided to say “fuck it” one more time.

Down the hatch and into the rabbit hole, I proceeded with the intent to find something, anything other than the drudgery of coping with reality I had. I was by myself in my apartment while my roommate was out. 4 grams of gold caps that varied in size from a thumb tack to about the size of penny with half a toothpick for a stem. At first I didn’t feel anything so I sat on the couch smoking cigarettes until it happened, I looked at the wall and it started bending in and out, convex and concave. At this point I had decided to wander around the apartment and became extremely sensitive to things I wouldn’t typically notice. I went to the bathroom and could hear the ocean, then I walked down the hallway and it felt like it was stretching and took way too long for me to make it back to the living room. I then decided to just lay down on the couch in silence and as soon as I closed my eyes I felt like I was falling through space with the earth as we spun together around our axis while spiralling around the sun. I had to open my eyes to make sure that I was still in my apartment and as soon as I gained the gumption to be with my mind I closed my eyes again and proceeded to let myself fall again. I had to trust that my mind wouldn’t fall out of my body and it was the closest thing to an out of body experience that I ever had. As I fell I looked around and could see the blur of matter around me but it wasn’t solid, everything was… fuzzy and I wanted to touch it but I had no body so I looked down to where my hands would be and could see that elements started to come together, first water with water, fire with fire, earth with earth and together they combined to form air, all in the shape of my hand. As my focus moved around I could see that I wasn’t alone in my falling, Everyone I ever met was there too but we all looked like eyeballs, just single eyeballs. Each one slowly opening and closing, turning into dirt an opening again. My focus zoomed out and the eyeball/dirt surface to see a giant, like one of those giants from shadow of the colossus for playstation 2, but their skin cells were made of people. We were the cells of one giant organism, like the fractalization of life.

much like this…fractal


With each cell starting out on the periphery and deciding where each of us will go, some of us into nothing and others into something. I could see that there were others just like it and that, if I wanted to stay, I would need to earn my place into its heart, where all the light was. I came to become a part of the heart of this goliath and felt like there were secrets that I wasn’t aware of up until this point. The next thing I knew was that there was another giant but it was dark and void of any definition and they were fighting. Sometimes some of us would all get hit at once by this giant nothing and feel dark. It was terrifying, scarier than any monster. Just imagine being nothing, never existing, being a 0. Then I found out that we had the choice, it was up to us whether we become nothing or something and suddenly I felt a sudden overwhelming happiness, I was something, I am something. In that instant I felt valuable, like I had something to offer. After years of depression all it took was a little bit of psilocybin, some introspection and feeling like I mattered. huh… its always the simple things that change your life. That was over 2 years ago and today I am on the verge of graduating from university… I’ll be the only one in my family to do so, maybe I really am something. Since then I said “fuck it” to other things like cigarettes, alcohol, drugs and violence.

That was almost 3 years ago and today I am authentically happy and proud of myself. I have found my imagination able to run wild without restrictions or fear and am now capable of love, I know it sounds hippy dippy but mushrooms changed my life for the better.

Now, although forgetting is valuable, I will never forget that experience… even though it was mostly in my own mind.

Well it looks like I stuck to my guns in my ranting but reading the botany of desires chapter on cannabis made me feel like it was appropriate to share one of my experiences with drugs. I guess I better talk about who interesting I found witches broomsticks were and how cool I think it would be to oversee a witches gathering. I found Pollens honesty endearing, especially since it was a gardener growing pot just to see if he could. I also had a lot of envy of his adventure to Amsterdam. The part about emojis and greeks was a bit curious and frankly he could have done without but it seemed like he may have smoked a bit of pot and went on a bit of a tangent writing that part, which is absolutely fine.

Over all the chapter was quit informative and entertaining.



Exquisitely Deadly

Elegant Death is the only words that came to me at the end of this chapter…

The beauty of death is that it is an experience that every single human will share, no matter how young or old. Although birth can only occur naturally in a handful of ways, death has the blessing of variation. A person can die from a heart attack, a car accident, get kicked in the head by a horse, eaten by a lion, get crushed by a pop machine, die of smoke inhalation, burn up in a fire, drown in water or drown in air (pulmonary edema), they can die by getting electrocuted, getting stabbed, shot, impaled, decapitated, starvation, blood loss, air loss, heat loss, freezing, overdose, suicide, being bit by a snake, swallowing rocks, throwing a radio in the bathtub (electrocuted twice), undernourishment, malaria, Ebola, dengue fever, bubonic plague, small pox, chicken pox, pellagra, rickets, crickets and/or baseball bats. Among the most interesting causes of death for me has always been death by poisoning, this method generally has the most interesting and complex stories accompanying it and just enough nostalgia to bring me back to my childhood. I found the description the types of poisons and their evolutionary emergence to be extremely fascinating. I am finding myself compelled to read the triumph of seeds in its entirety, too bad the semester pressure is starting to terrorize my soul, at school again way past my bed time trying to get yet another assignment done, drinking my mint, honey and lemon tea and trying to fight off a god awful sore throat and runny nose. Maybe I was poisoned by a contaminated puff of air from an espionage agent from the Donald trump campaign who can’t stand the thought of another Educated native bring up questions about land rights and title. The point is that espionage and James Bond movies are a part of some of my favorite childhood remembrances, spending days on end trying to catch up to my dads proficiency at 007 trivia. The thought of a real life example with the murder weapon being an umbrella and laced with one of the worlds deadliest poisons made the plane ride home not such a chore and… enjoyable. The irony of ricin is that coincidentally,  castor beans also produces motor oil, one of the worlds most successful lubricants for both cars and human because it also acts as a dehydrating laxative that was quite often used as a torture tool by Mussolini and sometimes used as punishment for children in more… barbaric times. I found it fascinating that ricin was potent enough to kill a human with as little as 2 grains of salt worth. This “exquisitely deadly” poison has the ability to take the mind on a whirlwind of fantasization about the potential for this grain to be in this cup of tea sitting next to me or in a speck of dust I just so happen to inhale, ok probably not but it still evokes so much respect for the potent-ial of plants and their babies. The questions that arise from such a deadly little compound like how the heck did this thing come to be? and what else is it good for? are all good and can keep me busy for hours but I can’t help but feel humbled by the pure hairline balancing act a life really is, especially mine, and yours. How the hell did we make it this far with such a deadly world around us? I sure am grateful I did.