I had already experimented with psychedelics before, but I knew 5-MeO-DMT was something else entirely. With 5-MeO-DMT being considered one of the most potent and transformative psychedelics known on earth, I approached my 5-MeO-DMT retreat with a mix of excitement and apprehension.I'll have you know that I spent hours reading first-hand accounts from 5-MeO-DMT retreat participants and watching videos of people sharing their experiences. However, nothing could have prepared me for how dynamic and earth-shattering 5-MeO-DMT was when the day finally came for me to take it.One of the things that I read about 5-MeO-DMT at the beginning of my research is that it's best to take it in a guided retreat. Especially if you're a bit nervous and unfamiliar with the medicine. Therefore, I sought out Tandava Retreats, which offers luxurious 5-MeO-DMT retreats in the heart of Mexico. I'll recount my journey to you in full, follow along with me.
In a formal sense, 5-MeO-DMT is a psychedelic medicine renowned for its potency in fuelling a mystical experience in those who work with it. Some describe 5-MeO-DMT as the God molecule because of the sensation people get when they work with the substance. They often say that 5-MeO-DMT makes them feel as though they merged with God, and experienced "non-duality" or oneness. They feel oneness with the universe, thus, they receive a refreshing new perspective on life.I'll go into more detail about my experience a little later.The way I see it, everyone has their own interpretation of what 5-MeO-DMT shows them. It is an incredibly personal experience, and therefore, it's difficult to speak about it in general terms. You can't have any precise expectations from 5-MeO-DMT, but the medicine does follow a distinct pattern during your trip.One thing I think I should clear up since I was confused about it too before I started learning more about the medicine is that it is separate from DMT. People who drink Ayahuasca are taking DMT, a plant medicine which produces a different experience from 5-MeO-DMT entirely. 5-MeO-DMT is a little bit more metaphysical and inquisitive while DMT focuses more on your exact personal problems, though both are completely valid as psychedelics. The main similarity between the two medicines really lies in the structure of the chemical compound.
When I first heard of 5-MeO-DMT, my friend told me that it's made out of a type of toad venom that you smoke. Little did I know, the Colorado River toad is only one of several different options at your disposal if you want to smoke 5-MeO-DMT. In fact, toad venom is actually the most recently-discovered instance of 5-MeO-DMT. In the past, it was most commonly derived from plants in South America. Evidence of its consumption dates back almost 3000 years. 5-MeO-DMT is present in at least 9 different plants, and it's also available in a synthetic form.One of the things that Tandava made clear about 5-MeO-DMT, was that the use of toad venom is rather destructive. Not only does it damage the well-being of the toads being harvested for their venom, but the nature of the venom is that it is challenging to parcel 5-MeO-DMT into measurable doses. Therefore, synthetic 5-MeO-DMT offers the ideal level of sustainability and convenience. Note that the strength and quality of the 5-MeO-DMT trip are identical across all the different formats, you won't lose anything by not taking the toad venom.
About a decade ago, 5-MeO-DMT was banned in the United States and categorized as a Class 1 substance. Many official bodies have concerns about the safety of 5-MeO-DMT, but the research says that it is one of the safest psychedelics around.In recent months, the United States has made moves to legalize psilocybin mushrooms in certain therapeutic circumstances. It shows just how far governments in the US and around the world have progressed in their treatment of psychedelics. Countries like Portugal have taken a more scientific approach to things and have decriminalized 5-MeO-DMT and other psychedelic medicines that are otherwise illegal elsewhere.
So of course, a 5-MeO-DMT trip is most suited for a retreat setting. Given the gravity of the lessons you'll learn and the intensity of the experience, you'll want to get every opportunity to think and reflect before and after your trip. Working with 5-MeO-DMT at a retreat gives you that option, and relieves you from the everyday worries that you would have otherwise.[caption id="attachment_2051" align="alignnone" width="1024"]
5-MeO-DMT journey[/caption]For me, this was a big deal. I heard that 5-MeO-DMT had the potential to cause extreme revelations, and being able to absorb them in a comfortable space was important to me. Plus, I liked the idea that I was going to be taken care of properly during the trip itself. They would run the ceremony using a framework that has succeeded before.Tandava's retreats last about 5 days, and there are 2 5-MeO-DMT trips incorporated into it, meaning that you'll have a lot of time to spend on other things. For me, that was meditation and journaling, for you it could be hiking and swimming. The great part about the retreats is that they're comfortable and they can be tailored specifically towards you and your interests. To me, that's the epitome of luxury.
Before I went on the retreat, I already knew that I didn't have to be a bona fide psychonaut to be allowed to participate. However, since I had some experience with psychedelics, I wasn't exactly afraid of altering my consciousness.I was more concerned about how 5-MeO-DMT would feel specifically. I was worried about the feeling of losing control.Thankfully, the facilitators at Tandava listened to my concerns and helped me work through the psychological barriers I felt deep within me. They also screened me to see if I had any pre-existing conditions that might have made me a bad fit for 5-MeO-DMT. Thankfully, they found none, but some people have been turned away in the past.Once they confirmed that I was a good candidate for 5-MeO-DMT, my facilitator spent a couple of weeks on calls with me over Zoom to help build what they called the "container" for my experience. Simply put, the container is a filter for you to perceive your 5-MeO-DMT trip, which incorporates your life experience and values. This is what helps you make the most of your trip and analyze it accordingly.
Some people want to position 5-MeO-DMT as if it's this wonderous medicine that solves all your problems. However, there were some things that I needed to clear up ahead of time to put myself in the right frame of mind.
DMT can be smoked as well and only lasts a few minutes, it also happens to be one of the two active ingredient in ayahuasca and when ingested rather than smoked, results in a multi-hour experience with vomiting. The main difference between DMT and 5-MeO is that DMT is very visual where 5-MeO is beyond the senses and something completely ineffable.
Look, I speak very highly of 5-MeO-DMT, and so do many others. However, it's still not going to be the life-changing medicine you need if you don't make a commitment to put in the work after you take it. Not to mention, the trip itself can be highly variable, even if it tends to follow a few common themes.
5-MeO-DMT isn't completely harmless. That said, the risk of potential complications is reduced almost to zero when you have a proper screening process instituted ahead of time. Plus, having facilitators oversee everything allows them to help work you through energy blockages that an amateur might not be able to handle if they were to supervise you.
Once I arrived at the retreat center, I felt an immediate sense of peace. The location was perfect. Nestled in the mountains of central Mexico, Tandava had clearly put a lot of thought into the comfort of their guests at the retreat center. It didn't take long for me to acclimatize to my surroundings, and I felt quite at ease, even after the first day.It wasn't until the second day that I experienced 5-MeO-DMT for the first time. Following a nice healthy breakfast and some light yoga in the morning, I spent about 30 minutes in the ceremony room breathing in 5-MeO-DMT and all the lessons it was about to teach me.
I just told you that my ceremony lasted 30 minutes, but honestly, it felt like it was several hours. And I'm not alone in this feeling, since most people report the same thing during their 5-MeO-DMT trip.Since I already trusted my facilitators due to getting to know them over video chat before the retreat, it was easy for me to surrender to the medicine under their care.
Once the medicine began to work its way around my body, I started to feel as though I had been thrown into a universe full of geometric patterns. I didn't really have control over my body, but my mind was still there, and I was approaching some sort of light.At the same time, I was trying to regain control of my body and my mind. I didn't want to continue down the path the medicine was taking me. However, I eventually had to resolve to join the light and surrender completely to the force that was compelling me. I think this is what people mean when they say that 5-MeO-DMT felt like they were joining God.Once I surrendered to the experience completely, it felt like I was receiving epiphany after epiphany. It was like looking back at my life and analyzing all my motivations at once. I discovered why I had done things that I didn't want to do, why certain people didn't get along with me, and much more. Issues that I felt I had been grappling with my whole life were somehow instantly resolved. It made no sense how this was coming all at once, but I felt a whole lot better about myself.Once I finally came to, I quickly began to scramble for a pen and paper. The facilitators had to restrain me and calm me down. But all I wanted to do at that moment was to write in full detail all the things I had seen, and all the revelations that had been revealed to me. It was straight out of a hero's journey from some movie.There was no physical pain following the experience, but I did feel a little disoriented. I was a little bit shocked at how intellectual the experience was, hence my desire to record everything at once. The vivid visualizations that other psychedelics provided simply were not present in this instance.
For the rest of my luxury retreat, I felt like a new person. In fact, a second 5-MeO-DMT trip a couple of days later helped shine further light on my internal workings. It was like hiking back up the mountain for a second time.I also had plenty of time to spend on other activities. We were situated right in the middle of nature at the retreat center, so it was pretty great to just take in the views and contemplate some of the things that I learned from the medicine. Things were pretty laid back. Aside from our morning breathwork and yoga routines, we were free to do as we pleased. Of course, we were also fed 3 daily meals for the entire retreat. Basically, we were taken care of, and everything was of exceptional quality.
As I mentioned earlier, integration is basically a prerequisite to actually incorporating what you learned from 5-MeO-DMT. A lot of people get caught up in the hype behind a particular psychedelic too easily, and eventually, end up jumping to the next one a few weeks later. The teachings of 5-MeO-DMT could end up taking months or years to implement, even if observable benefits are immediate. The only issue is, that you won't know the full extent of the benefits of 5-MeO-DMT until you actually give it a fair shake during integration.I received 4 integration calls from Tandava after the retreat. These helped me clarify the things that I felt during the retreat and pointed me in the right direction on my personal healing journey.That said, it's one thing to talk about these things during a Zoom meeting, and quite another to start practicing your newfound insights in your daily life. A change in perspective means nothing without a change in habits.Hence, I began to change my daily habits as a result of the integration work I did. I can't share every detail with you because it's very complex and personal, but essentially, I would say that I became a much more laid-back person after being controlling and uptight my entire life. I was able to forfeit decisions to others more comfortably and ask for people's input even on things that meant a lot to me.
I couldn't have asked for a better experience really. Everything about the retreat was carried out professionally, Tandava is one of the top retreat centers in the business. It all started from the first call where I sat down with the Tandava facilitator. From then on, I felt like I was in good hands.The retreat itself was well done too. I didn't know what to expect with the accommodations, but I must say that they did a great job curating the environment for each room. Everything from the comfortable beds to the views and decor was fantastic.As for the important part, the actual 5-MeO-DMT ceremony, I was blown away by how it went through without a hitch. Of course, some people can't control the complications that they experience during their ceremony, but mine went really smoothly, the focus was purely on the medicine and the stories it showed me. Nothing interfered with the magical experience.
Before I started the retreat, I heard a lot of different people discuss "ego death" and how 5-MeO-DMT helped facilitate it. People like Mike Tyson have recounted that taking 5-MeO-DMT was like killing themselves and coming back to life.I didn't interpret the experience as me killing myself exactly. On the other hand, it did show me that there were a lot of things that I held dear about myself that I needed to let go of, so in a metaphorical sense, 5-MeO-DMT helped me kill my ego, or at least restrain it a little bit.As I said earlier, I had a hard time giving up control to other people. Part of the reason for that is because I, or at least, my ego, always thought I knew best. Having this 5-MeO-DMT experience has helped me choose when to tune the ego out. In most cases, it's important to listen to others. To some degree, this was holding me back in my relationships with people. I've found that reducing my ego is actually helping me get more out of life than I did previously.
There is also a tangible spiritual component to my 5-MeO-DMT experience. If that's not something you believe in, that's OK too, we're all working with 5-MeO-DMT for different reasons.For me though, I really feel like a new person. And I'm not just talking about practical issues. I mean that I feel more open to new experiences, and new spiritual ideas. I feel a deeper sense of connectedness with the world around me. My oldest friendships somehow feel deeper. When I hear people talk about oneness and 5-MeO-DMT, I identify with it. And as a result, I also feel a lot calmer when I'm approaching issues in the world around me. I know that everyone has their own burdens to carry, and we all come from the same place at the end of the day, so I can forgive and forget much faster.
A lot of people tell themselves that they can think through things on their own and that they don't need to reach out to anyone for help. I think these notions are questionable. Frankly, you likely won't understand everything there is to know about 5-MeO-DMT, so it helps to have someone who already knows the medicine inside-out to guide you along the path. It also helps you bounce very personal ideas off someone in full confidence. Not everyone can feel comfortable opening up about their personal issues to their friends or family. It's almost like seeing a therapist in some way.
My experience was entirely my own, and you might face a different set of challenges from mine. You can't expect that my experience will match yours. As I said at the beginning, all the reading you do before your retreat can't possibly prepare you for the experience itself. You'll feel different sensations, and you'll learn different things. All I can expect is that my story piqued your curiosity.To get more information about luxury retreats at Tandava or about 5-MeO-DMT, contact them using the form below or explore our blog.