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Preparing for The Entheogenic Experience

Preparing for The Entheogenic ExperiencebyPaul Bunting

Face yourself now to experience (entheogenic) bliss and clear consciousness later ...

Quite how I got here, I do not know. For the most part, I write about stuff that comes naturally to me. You know, things that make me happy. In many ways, writing is a form of meditation. When things are going well and flowing, there is very little thinking involved. What comes through seems to come through on itís own. When itís out, ready for press and to be shared, rather often, Iím quite surprised. So I wonder how this is going to go Ö

My teenage years happened to fall in the 1990s. In many ways, that, by itself matters very little. On the other hand, if weíre going to have a conversation about entheogenic medicine, then itís a different story. So before I go further Iím going to do two things:

One: Iím going to be using the term entheogenic from this point on as an umbrella terms for entheogenic medicines. When Iím referring to entheogenic, there is nothing specific (in terms of entheogens) I am referring to.

Two: If you do not know what enthegenic means, here is what I consider to be an accurate description, sccording to wikipedia. Yes, I know, wikipedia is user generated content. I feel teh following is appropriate (besides the magic part) entheogenic:

"An entheogen (ďgenerating the divine withinĒ)[4] is a psychoactive substance used in a religious, shamanic, or spiritual context.[5] Entheogens can supplement many diverse practices for transcendence, and revelation, including meditation, psychonautics, psychedelic and visionary art, psychedelic therapy, and magic."

Now that thatís out of the way, let's get back to the entheogenic 1990′s:

As a kid, growing up in the US, in the 90′s, there was no shortage of entheogens. I was 16 when I had my first experience. I hadnít the slightest clue what I was getting myself into. Luckily, the type of entheogen used wasnít very potent.

Nonetheless, it created a memorable distortion in how I perceived ordinary reality.

Ordinary reality, as in, this is how I go through my day. Ordinary reality as in going through life, accomplishing the series of tasks you habitually accomplish, without question. Ordinary reality as in, being in a box without even realizing.

My first taste of entheogenic medicine took me out of that ordinary state of mind. I was by myself. I started to question things. I started to wonder why. Certain things became confusing. Others became clear. I realized various situations I was in that I had little control over. It was the start of many things.

Including more experiences. The trouble, however, was simple. It was something I wouldnít realize until years later. As a full grown adult.

What I failed to realize, failed to see Ė was the dangerous path I was cruising down.

"Entheogenic Medicines put lenses on your senses."

I believe I have mentioned so much in a previous post at some point. The idea behind that statement is simple. When you use an entheogen, you become aware Ö way more Ö vividly, painfully, beautifully and beyond words Ö of yourself.

When you realize simple solutions to complex problems, it's wonderful. When you feel as though you are waking up and clearing centuries old fog from your mind Ė itís awesome! When you gain a better understanding of yourself and those around you, itís enlightening.
However Ö

When things become dark, it can be frightening. When you become aware of the darker aspects of yourself that you run from, especially the stuff you are not consciously aware you are running from ... Blue skies turn grey in a matter of moments. Green pastures turn black. A pleasant stroll down memory lane can turn into a terrifying wide awake nightmare. All within a matter of moments.

I found out the hard way. Several times. What I failed to realize as a kid is that entheogenic medicine is not only more powerful than I fully understand, it simply wonít negotiate. With experiences typically lasting eight hours and longer, this can spell disaster to the unprepared.

As an adult a new world of entheogenic experiences opened up. The aftermath of an entheogenic experience I had when I was younger showed me many things.

In my early 20′s I became interested in meditation, introspective practices and other ways of understanding myself and the circumstances around me with an expanded sense of consciousness.

These interests led me into an extensive period of study. Some of the topics I have become most interested in are breathing techniques and meditation techniques that help me understand my unconscious patterns that I hold close as I go though life.

If I am unhappy with an area of my life, yet have difficulty changing it by figuring out or using logic, then another approach is needed.

One of my favorite approaches to getting simple answers (understanding) to complex life issues is a technique I think of as ďindexing.Ē

The meditative technique, indexing, has helped me assess, understand and accept the things I am already doing that my conscious mind may not be aware of.

When you think about our habits as patterns, the things we do on autopilot, without thinking, it can become obvious that our own patterns cause us troubles we are not able to see our way out of under normal circumstances. This can be frustrated.

Although we may try to change, when we are unaware of what specifically needs to be addressed in order to change, the process of change becomes draining. Not only that, itís just not effective.
You understand, right?

Ok, so imagine if you were to become aware of your habits, your darkness, your ongoing mistakes, your aberrations.

What do you think could happen?

If you understood exactly how you mind got you into difficulties, could experiencing a new way become easier?

Imagine if you understood where to apply the power of choice that you hadn't realized before.

To me, that alone (indexing) can do wonders to shine a light down the darker corridors of a personís life. It has for me at least. Itís something I have shared with many people who have hired me.

Knowing that entheogenic medicine reveals a series of truths during the experience, what do you think could happen if you were to becoming willing to work on yourself for at least two months before your experience?

This is something that often comes up in conversation. Itís a topic I feel strongly about. Strongly enough to write about and organize programs around. From both personal experience and guiding others to practice specific introspective techniques before an entheogenic experience. The results (of preparation) can be amazing.

What I mean by amazing, is blissful, clarifying and courageous. If entheogens make you face stuff (they do), then doesnít it make sense to face stuff before the experience so you can enjoy an enlightening, uplifting experience Ė rather than dealing with stuff that could have been dealt with beforehand?

I know there are those who could present arguments either way. And really, this is just the thoughts of one person. What you do is up to you, and you alone. If there is one thing I would like you to gain from this, its simple:

Healing comes in many ways and forms. All of which require ongoing effort. Rather than go into an entheogenic (or any other for that matter) experience blind, or with your eyes shut, doesnít it make sense to actively participate in your own awakening? I think it does.


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