First encounter with Iboga

 Sam (@Samwise) 7 years, 10 months ago

Iboga reports seem quite thin on the ground, and most out there focus on addiction treatment, so I thought I’d share this if it is of interest to anybody, as long as it is!

I had been in email contact with a healer for a while, who uses Iboga and ayahuasca to treat people with drug addictions. We have been exchanging info for ages, and he really knows his stuff on the plants. He offered me a fair price for an Iboga initiation with him is only a few hundred pounds, as oppose to a few thousand elsewhere, and being a once in a lifetime experience, I leapt on the chance. I wasn’t addicted to anything; I just want to experience what the Iboga root has to offer. It is the healing and spiritual sacrament of central Africa, from the forest, the place where we as a species first evolved.

Before the ceremony I’m asked to get two feathers, a black, oval stone and a shoelace. A rock and a coconut, and a bucket for vomiting are also required.

The key with Iboga is to take it gradually, to let your system adjust to it. I ingest my first gelcap of 7x Iboga extract. The extract is good in that it has 12 other alkaloids as well as the Ibogaine…the whole root alkaloids seem to provide a richer, fuller and smoother experience than pure Ibogaine according to the healer, whose first experience was with pure Ibogaine.

I take another capsule every 45 minutes or so, I’m not sure. I begin to feel a shift…I feel chilled and calm. The healer can see it in me to. He remarks that my eyes are glazed, dreamy, and some lines have smoothed out in my face.

Then my vision starts to shift. If I move my eyes or blinks, there is a flash of light, very similar to drinking too much Syrian Rue tea if anyone else has done that. I begin to feel a little dizzy with a slight stomach awareness, so lie down on my bed. I can feel the iboga flooding my brain, I notice my centre of gravity and balance is being affected…it feels like waves of energy are lapping at my sides, gently pushing me around.

This state lasts for a while. It is important not to move much now. Getting up suddenly will result in profound dizziness and vomiting. The healer says Iboga takes you on a trip through the invisible, and when you’re travelling there, you can’t move in the real world, or you will get BAD motion sickness. There is some visual activity behind closed eyes, a shimmering of pixels, but no solid forms, but it is still early days in the experience. Visions could be expected to begin by around 6 hours in.

The healer tells if I see any tunnels, to try and go down them, as they made lead to dream vision sequences, so I do this, with visual activity and colour taking on more form with time.

And then…very suddenly…I’m there. A large eye materialises very suddenly in the centre of my vision. According to the healer, this is my third eye/crown chakra/pineal gland, which the Iboga has activated. I have the strong feeling that this is not some hallucination, and that I’m actually witnessing a layer of awareness usually hidden to me. The eye has a roving pupil that spins around. It remains with me now for two days, in the top centre of my mind screen with eyes closed. There is a vortex of energy that connects the eye to my head, like a small tornado, and this is always in motion. If I close my eyes now, I can still see a beam emitting from the centre of my vision. The healer says this will be with me forever, and meditation can harness its power. This was very interesting to me as I had always considered the third eye idea new agey and maybe without any tangible basis. But I was experiencing it tangibly for sure!

The healer tells me to keep an eye out for a tunnel, which will lead me to the Iboga realm. Not long at all after meeting the eye, a serpentine like tunnel of energy appears from very far off in my vision behind closed eyelids. It opens in the bottom half of my vision, opposite the eye at the top. So down the tunnel I go, down into the Iboga realm. At this point the healer smashes a coconut with a rock, to symbolise the breaking open the head ritual.

A quick note on the physical experience of Iboga…it is no pleasure trip. And yet I never experienced any anxiety or fear. Your body is numbed, dead to the world, glued to the ground, unable to move, it’s like the iboga wants you anaesthetised so it can do its thing. It is in the mind where the Iboga’s energy is focused, a definite cerebral orientation. It is with eyes closed that the visions unfold. With open eyes, there are tracers, and a few lights, but nothing compared to the scenes unfolding in the darkness behind closed eyelids. I will note though, that Iboga is both incredibly powerful, and yet also has a gentle touch; ‘powerful like a gorilla, yet soft in wielding like a nerf dart’ to quote Homer Simpson.

Now things start to get more intense. The healer puts on a cd of Bwiti mouth harp music on repeat. Now my brain started to undergo a powerful defrag, with the left and right hemispheres exchanging information, balancing. This is going on as dream visions are unfolding.

I start flashing back to past childhood memories. I find it very hard; nigh on impossible to keep any train of thought…Iboga has the reigns now. I’m told the Bwiti music, which is very repetitive, yet not intrusive or boring in the slightest, is altering my brain waves, facilitating information between my brains two hemispheres.

Information, in the form of images and lots of DNA helixes, move around the outer field of my vision, between hemispheres, in an anticlockwise motion. I have many images of old filing cabinets and cupboards in my brain being emptied and cleaned out…the healer tells me Iboga like to spring clean, and get rid of excess baggage that isn’t needed. I do some spring cleaning in my brain, assisted by the Bwiti music.

I seem to enter the realm of the ancestors, but not for long. I get images of people walking and then collapsing, and then see four African women huddled together peering at me. I see a few heads and skulls. I’m only in this realm for a very short while. In total I’ve ingested around 20g worth of Iboga root bark, equivalent to a roughly a gram and a quarter of Ibogaine, quite a high dose, so I shoot through the ancestor realm, into deeper realms beyond.

The visions can be quite dark at times. The healer says if the visions become too intense, opening one’s eyes will interrupt them. I never feel the need to do this though.

Somewhere around this point I had one of my most profound experiences of all. Throughout the experience, in my room in the dark, I’ve been wearing a mindfold. Very suddenly, firstly the walls, and then my entire room comes into focus.
Let me please make this clear. I COULD SEE THE LAYOUT OF MY ROOM WITH MY EYES CLOSED. This was no illusion or hallucination. When I held up my arm in front of me, I could see my arm clearly through the mindfold! The room was lit in a silvery gray light.

I know this will be very hard to believe, but I swear on my life this is what I experienced. I was amazed and shared this with the healer…he was less surprised than I. From his Iboga use he could see rooms in the dark while sober now. Apparently hunters in Africa sometimes hunt at night on a little Iboga, it giving superior night vision which I can definitely believe.

This wasn’t an isolated occurrence. My being able to see the layout of the room lasted for the next 18 hours at least. I could will this power into being just by thinking about it. If I wished to be aware of the my walls and floor, and I would will my awareness to that area. This was an experience I will never forget. I have ABSOLUTELY NO DOUBT that I was seeing with my eyes closed. This, I thought, was impossible. But clearly I must have been seeing with my mind’s eye. I don’t know…but I know the experience was real.

The visions were very powerful at some points. Solid and massive objects in my closed eye visions would levitate, and then fly out of the room, or the scope of my vision on their own accord. I did purge at some point, which was a pleasant release.

While it was very hard to maintain a train of thought, in other ways you could direct Iboga. The healer recommended that if any nasty visions unfolded, all is required is to ‘track the love’ and negative visions would be enveloped in good lovin’ vibes.

A really incredible experience of Iboga that I had later on in the vision phase is that any thought I would have, would be projected in a vivid 3D image behind closed eyelids. So anything in the universe you could think of, an image would be summoned before you, to examine three-dimensionally! And via your will alone you could move and rotate this image or change it how you saw fit. This was interesting as the great inventor Nikola Tesla describes experiencing similar mind states to this during his life, and they seemed to have been very important to his work.

I continued to clean away files, and empty cabinets. Later on in the experience, I checked these cabinets, and they were all empty and clean, having all ready being cleared out. An interesting experience with the iboga was that once you had dealt with a vision, you could push it outside your scope of vision, where it would dissolve from whence it came.

At one point, something appeared in the left hand side of the vision, some nebulae of matter, and I watched it with my left eye, which it lined up with, before turning around and turning into an exact mirror image of my left eyeball! The healer thought this was funny, and said this was the nature of Iboga. The visions were very powerful behind closed eyes…entire realms would open up, elongating and contorting in space, and other times huge bits of furniture in my bedroom would levitate and fly out of the window. They say your first time with iboga tends to be the most visionary, and it was certainly the case for me, but this is one of the most visionary experiences I’ve ever had, and I believe I got a high dose of iboga.

In the Iboga state, you are effectively in a waking dream. Your brain is in deep REM, and so you don’t require sleep. I didn’t get a any sleep (or eat any food) for two days. And yet I never felt tired or hungry. Despite being confined to bed for nearly two days, I was NEVER bored, not even for a second. It rained later in the night when the healer went to get some rest, and the sound of the rainfall sounded exactly like the Bwiti mouth harp music, as my brain had been entrained, listening to it on repeat for 20+ hours!

Some friends came over to drink ayahuasca the following evening, and it was really good to have them around. I felt calm and centred, but was unable to walk without feeling sick and dizzy, so chilled a bit more. At one point I drank too much water to quickly and vomited lots of green bile, which made me feel better though.

I felt at peace, yet also blank in my mind. The healer explained that my slate had been wiped clean, and that it would be around day five or six after Iboga that I would be a new man. The main visual and introspective experience lasted 36 hours. On waking up on Sunday, I encountered the most incredible liquid tracers I have ever seen. The norIbogaine had taken over the Ibogaine, and my brain was saturated in dopamine, which was giving rise to the incredible tracers.

Around Sunday lunch time I went for a walk, it being nice and sunny after a rainy start. My friends left, and I did some uni work until 3AM on Sunday night before handing it in on Monday morning.

In the iboga afterglow I feel really good. I felt strong, energised, euphoric and positive. Ibogaine gets converted to noribogaine by the liver which is responsible for a large part of the afterglow. Ibogaine is lipophilic, and gets stored in body fats and is gradually converted into noribogaine over months following the flood session. Ibogaine also causes a long term increase in levels of a brain protein called glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) which is a powerful neuroprotective factor that protects dopamingergic neurons and encourages sprouting of new neurons (levels are also increased through exercise and exposure to sunlight).

I found this experience really hard to put into words, but gave it a shot anyway. This experience I would say is one of the most important life experiences of my nearly 25 years being alive (at the time) on this planet. The power of Iboga is something else…there is NOTHING else ever remotely like it. How nature has come up with such an incredible tool and medicine is itself amazing. Remember that Iboga achieves what ayahuasca does in a single plant, with an MAOI built into its molecular structure.

I think here in the West, Iboga is a plant more of us could do with listening to. To any seekers and dreamers out there, I would encourage you to open your mind to the possibility of working with this plant…it seems like very few people out there have fully experienced it, which is a shame. It is absolutely imperative you approach iboga withb respect, do your research and use it with care for it to be used safely and effectively.

One key message I got from this experience that has stayed with me to this day is the importance of cultivating new opportunities and experiences. If you are passive then sure you will get a few of these come your way. But if you are active in cultivating these, you will be rewarded in more ways you cannot perceive, so it suggested I get out there, make some ripples on the cosmic pond, and who knows where they can be surfed them to, or how they will reflect onto others of myself in positive ways.

I was impressed with Iboga though…I found it MUCH more personal, interactive and human orientated than ayahuasca, which, if it does work for me, seems a bit like like an alien language I have a hard time translating or understanding. Iboga is a very different plant.

A three and a half week follow up…

Today, I feel FANTASTIC. Glowing, energised, positive, just digging life turned all the way up to 11…

Close friends and family have noticed a change. They say I am more positive, more relaxed and at ease, more in the present, in the ‘here and now’, and more open and communicative.

Since Iboga I’ve had a strong urge to exercise and keep active a lot, which is no doubt aiding this state. I’ve been eating well, and generally feel very healthy, and ‘light’ if that makes sense. Life also seems to be going very well generally.

I’ve also been doing breathing meditations, and a few rituals, following my healers recommendation, and recently had an introduction to Zazen meditation. I meditate most nights now…I found I am more open and receptive to meditation following Iboga…to be honest, I found it hard before I think.

I sleep very deeply and well, and my dreams are very visionary. An evening a week after my experience, I had smoked a little ganja, and was doing some breathing meditation, and my third eye opened again, shimmering and in motion.

Having vapourised a tiny amount of cannabis, in a vapouriser, I did some breathing meditation. My room came into focus again, although fainter than when on Iboga. This time though I could walk around and touch things, not being bed bound. Again, my third eye opened, just before falling asleep, and my dreams were very vivid, which is unusual after smoking ganja…which I will be abstaining from in future evenings.

This is still early days with Iboga’s healing, but I can honestly this is the best I’ve felt. I need to be disciplined with the meditations and rituals that my healer provided me with – this is still very much early days and a work in progress – but, cheesy and new age as it sounds, it feels like Iboga has opened a door, that with discipline and motivation, can be kept open now, and realms beyond it explored.

I have a great deal of respect for the Iboga plant. I know people associate it with drug addiction detox…but Iboga has SO MUCH MORE to offer us. I am in no rush, but will meet this plant again for sure…if and when I meet it again, I would have more questions and intentions, and having experienced it once already, feel I could better communicate and navigate with it. My mum and a close friend were initiated themselves in the months that followed

Following on from this experience, I had several more flood dose sessions, one with root bark, another more with pure ibogaine, and a few more floods with TA extract. The latter being superior in my experience…all the alkaloids and ‘whole plant’ essence of the plant, but MUCH easier on one’s system than the root bark. It is also very easy to obtain from iboga root bark using nothing but distilled vinegar.

Several years later, this experiences still stands out with one of deepest and most amazing I’ve ever had. I don’t really get depressed, it seems iboga reinforced how pointless, boring and selfish and self pitying being in despair is, and while life has its ups and downs for us, I can’t stay down for long. I seem to be more in tune with my body these days, and diet and healthy life style, for the most part, seem instructive. Also I find it harder to drink alcohol excessively, and while I do like a drink, I seem more aware of how poisonous it really is when overused.

So in my opinion iboga is a very interesting, multifaceted healing plant. It is certainly in NO WAY recreational and should be respected but for people interested in personal growth, health, meditation it could be a valuable ally. I do respect its anti-addiction properties, but I believe this aspect of the plant has perhaps overshadowed the other facets it has to offer Mankind.

December 8, 2013 at 10:16 am
Anonymous (0) (@) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

Woah. Reading this gave me the chills. Thank you for sharing this.
You definitely put me on the Iboga road, being of african descent I’ve been hearing from early childhood all sorts of tales, saw some incredible healings or mad accurate predictions from..hum…let’s call them shaman..Can’t think of another word.
Anyway when I came across Iboga I knew I had to deal with it at some point.

What would you recommend for a first time, being with healer ? Or or your own ?
I guess it’s somehow rethorical since I feel Iboga and Ayahuasca are substances you should be first introduced to by someone experienced.

This is such a great report, I need to thank you again.

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Tobias Valdemar Broe Knudsen (92) (@2bias) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

I think it’s really cool of you to take the time to jot down your experience with this plant for the rest of us to read. I remain sceptical in the face of your claim of seeing without your eyes, and I think that it’s more likely that you had what’s called a top down experience, which means that your visual sense is sort of working backwards, thus creating images based on what’s already in your mind. We often underestimate the power of the subconscious mind to create vivid experiences, and I often find myself convinced that for example i’ve somehow gained telekinesis during a dream. I imagine your experience was of a similar nature, but I really respect that you had that experience, and I would really like to try it myself, although I think a few hundred pounds is a lot fo money for 20 grams of bark and an initiation.

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Q (94) (@Qualohuasca) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@samwise, thank you so much for sharing. You seem to know quite a bit about the chemical effects as well, which was a welcome and necessary addition. I enjoyed reading this quite a lot. Shall see if it may be possible to acquire Iboga. I have an addictive personality, so I’d probably be up for a hard experience…

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Sam (448)C (@Samwise) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@saikoubambino, Hi Saikou, thanks for your kind words, I’m glad you enjoyed the report, it was my hope to spread a little awareness of this plant. I would recommend a healer at least for your first time, but I was reluctant to advise that openly, the guy who introduced me to iboga turned out to be a negative influence…he gave me a fair deal my first time, but the next time we tried to exploit us money wise, and we had a fall out, and he left sending texts threatening Voodoo and black magic intervention (I don’t like to judge, but let’s just say this guy had issues and leave it that, I’m not sure someone like him should be healing anybody). So while I do recommend a healer I would recommend a good healer, and these may be thin on the ground. I have flooded three times with friends/family present and no healer present and all worked out fine…if anything it was much easier to focus than with him jabbering on about various conspiracy theories all the time.

Iboga can affect the rhythms of the heart, and anyone with heart abnormalities should maybe avoid iboga (peeps can be screened via ECG for this), and it is very important to be drug free for the session. But if you play by its rules I don’t think it is dangerous, but used in the wrong hands or lacking respect, it definitely could be.

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Sam (448)C (@Samwise) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@2bias, Hi Tobias, thanks for your kind words. In your position I would be just as skeptical of such claims, and indeed before this experience I would have thought this experience impossible. I have definitely had the experience your describe before, on other psychedelics, or when stoned or relaxed and prior to sleep in the dark. Always though if one tried to test it the room would take up its real as oppose to projected position, and I’m sure iboga is capable of playing such tricks too. However, in this instance I am adamant that what I experienced I was real. I waved my arms in front of my face (in pitch black room, eyes closed, while blindfolded) and could clearly and easily see them, moving in real time, very clearly, as well as the details of the room. I wasn’t seeing in colour, more a silvery, grey light, but it was profoundly self evident for me at the time that what I was experienced was real, as big a claim as that is (I’m a scientist so not prone to making crazy unsubstantiated claims). I never really believed in the idea of a third eye before this, but it was self evident to me in a very vivid fashion I had been wrong about that. I have also had some amazingly vivid dreams, but as vivid as these experiences are, they are dreams.

If you read iboga experience reports, you will find that experienced of seeing with eyes closed, or having one’s third eye’s open, are really very common indeed, perhaps one of the most common unifying effects of the plant. £200 may seem steep, but it can cost upwards of £1,500 in an addiction treatment context. Now I would purchase 25g of root bark for around £60, not including postage, and extract the alkaloids from it with vinegar. Iboga is being over-harvested in Gabon because of the Western interest in the plant and is getting ever scarcer there, so important it is sources sustainably from other countries such as Cameroon and Congo.

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Sam (448)C (@Samwise) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@qualohuasca, happy to dude I’m glad you enjoyed the read. Happy to answer any questions and stuff, and below I’m going to share my fourth flood experience for anybody interested.

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Sam (448)C (@Samwise) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

This was my fourth flood, and my second time using TA extract. Two close friends joined me, and it was their first time with iboga. Dosage was 25g of root bark per person. 1.5g of this was ingested as unprocessed root bark alongside the TA, and another 1.5g was kept as post session booster doses per person. In addition I ingested 500mg on each of the two days before the flood, with the intention of introducing iboga to my system and get it resonating with it prior to ingesting the flood dose (the Bwiti dose gradually before taking the final flood dose). The TA was prepared via the vinegar tek, so only distilled vinegar was used in creating the extract, keeping things au natural. The root bark chips were powdered in a coffee grinder prior to the extraction. The tek is very simple to perform, and if one is in a rush, they can have extract ready from scratch in a day. I wasn’t however and opted for a longer term vinegar soak on a friend’s advice, the first soak was five days, the second two days, the third a night. The first pull was by far the darkest, it seems like this gets the bulk of the alkaloids out. This tek is incredibly simple, low cost and stress free to perform, produces a potent and clean extract and makes things MUCH cheaper than buying your own extracts. So if people are interested in using TA or iboga alkaloid extracts I highly recommend they extract themselves.

On the day, we ate some fruit and had some fresh vegetable juice for breakfast, and then we drank water throughout the day. Early on we each ingested 500mg of root bark, to test for sensitivities or any allergic responses, and let people get a feel for iboga and get their systems resonating with it. A few hours later we had another 500mg. The day was spent outside in nature in the sun, walking and chilling. My friends were impressed with the feeling of the iboga at that level, and there was a definite clarity felt from fasting. They had made the effort to come up really late the night before so we could have the day to get settled in and ready for the experience ahead. Prior to the session we put the TA in capsules…it really helps to make sure it is completely dry. I oven dried mine at a low temperature, but only the top layer was dry, beneath that it was still gloopy and sticky. So it helps to expose this and make sure it is dry too, otherwise preparing capsules can become an exercise in patience and perseverance!

A room was all prepared with beds alongside each other. Iboga definitely isn’t a social thing, I’m not sure we really talked much at all for the first 20 hours, but having companions there going through their own journeys is good for morale, and great for re-entry. The yield I got with the TA was lower than I had expected, I didn’t weigh it but I could tell from the amount of capsules I used that it was lower than others were reporting for the equivalent amount of root bark with this tek. Two hours prior to dosing we stopped drinking water, and then took half of our TA dose (4 capsules) along with 500mg of root bark powder, to provide the essence of the whole plant. The dosing part was very easy which I liked…my second experience was with 14g of root bark, which meant ingesting 28 capsules. Here I was only ingesting 9 capsules in total, which were being split between two dosings. An hour later we took the second half of our dose. We relaxed for a bit and when we started to feel the iboga we switched to candle light, put some Bwiti music on and climbed into bed. We did not have a full time sitter or guide on hand, I don’ think one is necessary and feel that iboga is both the experience and the guide and knows exactly how to go to work on you, but my mum was around in case of any problems. She has been initiated with iboga herself so knows the ropes. While I don’t think one needs a sitter, it is definitely a good idea to have someone trusted on hand just in case of any problems; better safe than sorry.

Dosing like this, the iboga got to work quickly which I liked. I do think from experience that one’s initiation flood is the special one in terms of visions. This experience took me deep, but the visions never reached the spectacular grandeur they did on my initiation, but they took me deep enough to the place where I could perceive thought as 3D images in front of me. I had mentioned this before to my friends, and one of them experienced it to a strong degree and had a great time playing around with this, it’s a really special tool to possess for a while. While my third eye was open again and there were visions going on, my session was more focused on the therapeutic as oppose to visionary aspects of iboga. It is funny the way iboga works, I almost feel these therapeutic insight happen almost when you’re not looking. I did look into events from my past, but not to the same extent as on my initiation. More recent events were looked at in more detail. Interestingly, I think I found a group of filing cabinets I cleaned out on my initiation…I had a look in these but they were still empty which was cool. We listened to Bwiti music for around 15 hours. Even when it was off, for many hours afterwards I could hear it in other music we played and other noises, and I could tune into it with my mind despite it not being played anymore. Interesting how the patterning of the sound stays with you like this, I got this profoundly on my initiation also, where the sound of the rain outside kept the Bwiti music playing in my head long after it was turned off.

I really got a strong sense this time, as did my friends, that iboga is a master healer and you are its patient. It is a defrag and detox agent par excellence. It puts you in this state of limbo…all desire for intoxicants, food, water, sleep and movement are gone, and I believe iboga deactivates these important drives in the brain, while incapacitating you with ataxia and numbing you, to give it the time to do its work and you the time and space you need to reflect. It is rare to be liberated of all these primal survival drives at one time. But you aren’t bored either…one is content to lie in bed for a day and a half, something which would be hard to do while sober. Around 20 hours after dosing, we went for a little wander. One of my friends wanted to get out of bed before night fell for the second time. We went for a little walk but all soon realised we not yet ready for the world of the vertical. It took a little effort and energy to maintain balance and walk, and nausea began to creep back, and we felt apathetic and numb. So after a brief stint outside, we admitted we were far from ready to be up and about, and headed back and got into bed. An interesting thing about dosing around the same time rather than staggering over a longer period is that one is sooner able to move without much difficulty much sooner which I liked. This day crawled along at a snail’s pace…not in a bad way but I don’t think I’ve ever known such a long day.

Neither of my friends purged, or felt much in the way of nausea with the TA which I didn’t expect. My nausea was off and on. We had buckets by the bed just in case. It was walking to the toilet long after dosing which prompted my purge, and it was a great deep cleansing release, despite some acid bile getting in my nostrils. I felt a little hot at times, but this passed and cannot compare to the feverish heat I experienced on my session with root bark, which reminded me a bit of Dengue fever I caught in Vietnam.

My friends seemed to have more powerful visions than I, which is interesting as we were all on the same dose, I definitely feel your first time is your most special in terms of visions, so I would recommend a fair dose that first time. Either way you’re going to be incapacitated for a day and a half, you may as well journey deeply! Both friends experienced being able to see the outline of the room around them with their eyes closed vividly, and they both experienced scenes of death and sex, and acts of sexual violence. These seem to be pretty common with iboga, but I can’t say I’ve experienced them really. It does seem to affect the primal part of the brain dealing with this. Sex and death are the two key driving forces behind evolution, and are a very important component of our humanity and history as a species. My friends witnessed some pretty graphic scenes, but they felt they were witnessing the horror in a detached stance, so it didn’t really affect them emotionally. It is interesting, as for me, I have never felt any fear or anxiety on iboga. I really seem numb to these kind of feelings while on it, it’s like that part of the brain is anaesthetised. It makes me wonder whether iboga could assist people with PTSD. My friends were expecting iboga to be a much more intense experience in some ways and were surprised at just how soft a touch it had, and so would be interested to one day use it again, knowing the ropes as it were. My mum felt the same way when she was initiated. I really feel that the traditional psychedelics have the potential to be much more emotionally unpredictable and volatile than iboga, at least in my experience.

Both of my friends encountered African imagery and African people strongly. I did on my initiation too. One of my friends’ most treasured experiences was encountering a group of very ancient humans. He felt like he was looking at the most ancient human beings, the early, ancestral Homo sapiens. He thought that it may have been his knowledge he had ingested an African plant that were affecting these visions. So he made sure to scrutinise and study these people. He said the detail on their faces was utterly clear and incredibly detailed and realistic, and that he’s never had an experience like this. It was like he was in a well and was looking up towards them. Each time one of them passed, as well as fully seeing the detail in their faces, they would maintain direct eye contact with him. This was a passive experience in that there was no interaction or communication beyond this, but he felt the experience was very deep and very special.

My other friend experienced more African imagery, and more images or violence and war. She felt detached from this though, and felt she was witnessing scenes representing our past. A past we may not wish to acknowledge at times, but an important component of our past nonetheless. On one’s initiation, there seems to be a defining moment when the experience commences. For myself it was my third eye opening, and beneath that a tunnel opening, taking me to the iboga realm. For my mum it was encountering an African girl around a fire in a village who smiled and waved at her. For this friend it was some flowers blossoming in different vibrant beautiful colours…I thought this was interesting as she is very green fingered and loves her plants, it seems iboga feels out and makes itself compatible with one’s individual psychology. She also said she had a very positive and very special experience where she strongly felt she encountered the spirit of her dead grandmother. She was looking over a scene in an African village and strongly felt, rather than saw, her grandmother’s spirit over her left shoulder. The emotional feeling that accompanied this she felt was just like how she felt with her grandmother when she was alive. Really interesting this encountering of ancestors, both recent and very ancient. I know the Bwiti use iboga in flood doses as part of the initiation to go to the land of the dead and speak with the ancestors. I wonder what exactly people are encountering in this realm, and whether iboga allows one to tune into genetic memories. My friends and I are both pretty sure that there is something really deep and significant going on here; and that to attempt to explain it away as simple projections of African imagery from the knowledge that this is an African plant would be tantamount to scientific or psychological reductionism that would miss out on the full story. I’m sure this explanation could explain some of the imagery, just not all of it.

We dosed on the Friday night around 9. Visions lasted much of the night, and then we were in a reflective state from then until late on Saturday night where we fell asleep. By Saturday night, noribogaine levels were getting much higher so we were getting amazing visual trails and flashes of bright white light with movement of the eyes, what the Bwiti refer to as ‘white birds’. On the Saturday night when I finally fell asleep I had frantic, fun and really vivid dreams. Think I slept lightly but felt much better after it. One doesn’t get over iboga until they first fall asleep. This is when your brain is reset after the defrag. We awoke late Sunday morning feeling great. It was a beautiful sunny day so we spent it outside in the sun, walking and chilling and smoking a few joints. We were in really high spirits, prone to laughing, and it was great to have people there for this stage of the experience. At night we made a fire outside, had a mug each of strong hot cocoa and smoked a few more joints. It was a great end to a really great day. The combination of cannabis with iboga worked well…I know it is one of the few things used alongside iboga in central Africa at times. The noribogaine kept things lucid, clear and upbeat, it was a nice combination. We all felt very content throughout the day, so content we didn’t talk much at times.

We all slept very deeply on Sunday night and awoke feeling great on Monday. After a nice breakfast my friends parted ways. A number of different people have remarked how great I look following the iboga, and I could see this in my friends. I mean I have been gardening lots in the sun, in fresh air and nature, and have been eating healthily before hand, but people were adamant that I had a really healthy glow about me and were looking really clear in my complexion. I certainly feel really good…grounded, content, at peace, serene, calm, clear, focused. I still feel this strongly. The feeling after iboga, and the fact that it remains with you for some time, is alone almost enough to warrant taking iboga I feel. It seems you get the hangover part out of the way during the experience itself, and this powerful boost it gives you afterwards is almost a reward for going through the experience; a shining light at the end of the tunnel.

I’m a big fan of the TA extract. Unlike pure ibogaine, you get all the other alkaloids playing their part, and I think they augment, deepen and prolong the healing and the visions one receives. However I also feel that TA is much smoother on one’s system than the root bark. I think also that TA will allow one to venture much deeper into the iboga realm than eating root bark would allow, due to purging on it, and one’s system only being able to handle so much wood at any one time. I found my much lower dose of root bark I experienced to be much harder physically and psychologically, and I got feverishly hot from it for a time, the experience seemed slightly foggier and the dizziness and ataxia were MUCH worse than I’ve experienced with TA or ibogaine. I’ve also heard reports of headaches and such with the bark. So it seems to me that there are other nasties in the wood, or it may just be the wood itself. So I strongly feel that TA is both more user friendly and effective than root bark or ibogaine for flood doses in some respects, root bark I feel is great for booster or micro dosing. And for people who like to ingest their plants au natural with minimal chemical tampering, I think a simple vinegar tek ticks that box too.

Iboga is very special stuff indeed. While I’m in no rush to ingest a flood dose again, I know I will again one day, and am tempted to make it an annual or biannual event. Next time around I would have no qualms either about increasing the dosage of TA ingested, and fully intend to. Of all the shamanic plants and fungi and the one animal venom (kambo) I have experienced, I think both the depth of the healing from iboga, coupled with the long term nature of this healing, really puts iboga into a league of its own.

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Martijn Schirp (112,780)A (@martijn) 7 years, 5 months ago ago

Great write up Sam, really liked reading it.

I have done a half flood (?) with 4 teaspoons grinded root bark plus 1 month before and after micro dosing between 1,5 teaspoon to 3 teaspoon a week. I really like your description of Iboga, so thank you for that.

Fever etc. is an essential ingredient of life, so perhaps root barks in a different way effective? Perhaps cleaning out your bacterial household, studies have shown this can have a dramatic effect on cognition. (and I suspect cognition of the body mostly).

I am doing a full flood in a month as I have been healing tremendously in ways I couldn’t think were possible.

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Filip (2,818)M (@filipek) 7 years, 10 months ago ago
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Tobias Valdemar Broe Knudsen (92) (@2bias) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@samwise, That’s really interesting! Anyway I think that i’ve got the solution to settle this – Next time, just ask a friend to wave an object in front of your, or a number of fingers, and tell him how many ;)

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Sam (448)C (@Samwise) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@2bias, Haha it was, it’s a shame as I think I could have had a good shot at the James Randi prize while in that state! I never got back to the same level of clarity on subsequent iboga experiences, but I think this is on account of both the dosage my first time and the first flood experience tending to be the most visionary.

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Tobias Valdemar Broe Knudsen (92) (@2bias) 7 years, 10 months ago ago

@samwise, Haha yeah i’d have loved to see that!

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tamerauf (0) (@tamerauf) 6 years, 4 months ago ago

hey, great read. i have read about iboga before and i thought it was deadly and risky to use but it seems like what i read was wrong. i have depersonalization, for at least 10 years, 24/7, and i read it can format the brain and get rid of all disorders. i would really like to try it but i’d like to try it with the healer you did with. i live in Egypt but I’m willing to travel for healing. please help :)

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