More plant based art. Or, more specifically, fungus based art. As in mushrooms. In this case Psilocybe Cubensis. That most magical of mushrooms. The good shit. And these mushrooms are indeed quite the magical treat.
For those of you who have never been to Electric Ladyland or chatted up that hookah smoking caterpillar, Cubensis mushrooms are psychedelic. And probably the most common variety of that kind of mushroom growing wild in the world. Do to the general ease of their cultivation, they are also the most likely to be grown by those looking to go trip the light fantastic. They’re also illegal to have in one’s possession in most parts of the world.
Of course for me, I find the idea of a plant being illegal to have in one’s possession quite ridiculous. It just seems to me that trying to outlaw a plant, a naturally occurring creation is just a waste of time. Now, many would think otherwise and believe that psilocybin and mushrooms like Cubensis are very dangerous, subversive really. And they are. Quite subversive. And, like that other piece of heavily legislated, illegal to possess (in many states) plant life, marijuana, I find that the people who are often the most against it, have rarely, if ever tried it.
And I get that. Many people have a fear of tripping. Of taking something that alters how they perceive the world. They may be afraid for a wide variety of reasons. They may have heard of people having a so-called bad trip where they freak completely out and are carted off to mental institutions. And maybe that actually happens. I’ve never experienced that, or known anyone who has. I’ve never had a bad trip either. I think that has something to do with the lay of the interior land, more than it has to do with any drug.
And the reason the shit is subversive is that it truly subverts pretension and bullshit. It exposes the false in our self and in the world. Psilocybin speaks the truth. Unfortunately the truth can be hard to stand witness to sometimes for some people. And it’s hard enough to lie to a police officer on good acid, much less lie to your self.
Acid, mescaline, DMT and the host of variants of these man-made and synthesized psychedelics are keys that unlock the doors in our minds. And I think that for the vast majority of people that’s a really wonderful experience. These psychedelics obliterate the ego driven mind. They tend to eliminate judgement. Everything has a beauty, sometimes an overwhelmingly and spiritually moving beauty that is indescribable joy. The simplest of things is seen for it’s extraordinary beauty. Especially the natural world and other living things. Everything is enhanced, even on the lightest dose of a trip.
Music is just beautiful. Even music you may not have liked all that much in the past. I recall finding a rapturous joy in a Barry Manilow record back in the day under the influence of some extraordinary blotter acid. Just saying. I always feel like getting out into the world when I’m tripping. Many of my friends don’t want anything to do with that. But for me, interacting with the world is a wonderful thing. Especially the natural world. I always have an intense desire to be outside. Hugging trees. Laying down on the ground and just feeling the big vibrational hum of the world. And oh my, it does hum.
Mushrooms and there natural psychedelic cousin, peyote, are a different thing. The man made stuff is wonderful and I’ve tripped at least 100 times or so on different varieties of that. But the natural stuff is just… better. After all, it’s natural. Organic. Tasty in the same way an organic apple is. Pure. As the Goddess intended.
With the man made stuff there is always, in my experience, a “chemical”-ness to them. Sometimes that appears as a speedy-ness to the buzz. It doesn’t make it un-enjoyable and it doesn’t reduce the more spiritual component of the trip, but it is a different feel from the natural stuff. And the natural stuff is delicious.
Taking mushrooms opens the doorways to different ways of thinking, new ways of looking, feeling, experiencing the world. They don’t make you crazy. They enhance the life experience. And they change you. By expanding you. By reducing your own self importance. By facilitating a sense of wonder and awe. In many ways returning you to a child like wonder.
You’re different after taking them. Permanently different. I’ve always felt the world was divided between two types of people, those who have and those who have not. Because once you’ve tripped on something like mushrooms, those door that were opened, well they stay opened. And that’s a good thing I think. I’ve never known anyone to commit a crime, act like a complete ass, start a fight or walk off a building thinking they could “fly” on mushrooms, peyote or any other psychedelic substance I’ve tried. What I’ve experienced is people becoming more conscious. More aware of the world. Less judgmental. Less dogmatic. More questioning. More open to new lines of thought. Once you see the beauty of the world, it’s hard to go back. Once you’ve stepped outside of fear and prejudice, seen the false nature of so many things, it no longer holds much sway in your world.
Psychedelics break you down. They break down all that ego thinking. They take me and turn it into we. They show you the big connection. They free your mind from cultural inhibition and dogma. No wonder the shit is illegal, lol. Governments don’t want you to think. Especially not like that, lol. Alcohol is a much better drug for what governments and power structures want. And I’ve certainly got nothing against alcohol, I enjoy it a few times a year. But I’ve seen the damage the stuff can cause in people. It’s very easy to abuse, it’s readily available and it’s marketed like crazy.
Psychedelics create the space for particle jumping thinking. And by that I mean out of the box thinking. Breakthroughs. And not just while you’re tripping. It often is later and afterwards. Insights gained during the psychedelic experience carry over and create subtle and not so subtle shifts in thinking. New ways of looking and visualizing the world. Particle jump thinking is the “aha!” moments. The times when the tumblers click in a new way. The times when we “get it”. Whatever it is.
I’m a fan of psychedelics. I guess if you’ve read this far that’s fairly apparent. And so it’s no surprise that I would, in the process of exploring plant based art, find my way to these particular mushrooms. In earlier posts, I’ve explored marijuana and Amanita Muscaria mushrooms. These today, are form the Cubensis family. I wish I had some growing of my own to photograph, but unfortunately I don’t so I had to go out on the interweb and look for some pics. But hopefully, I’ll be able to take my own soon enough.
I’m also going to drop some links at the bottom to more information about Cubensis mushrooms and some interesting people should you be so inclined… but for now, let’s get to some art…
An interesting thing about these since I wasn’t working from my own higher resolution photographs, but instead from low resolution photos found on the web, there is some interesting digital “artifacting” in the final versions. While some may find this objectional, I think it is one more way in which the random enters the process.
Here’s some mushrooms… disguised as art…
Interesting stuff and I really can’t wait to take my own photos.
As always… tell us what you think.
Yours in exploding the ordinary and examining the extraordinary…
P.S. To my beloved and treasured and totally fabulous girl of a girl, the incomparable Zengirl… I love you and thank you for all your support.