What is Salvia divinorum?
Salvia divinorum is best known for its Youtube salvia trip videos and as a hallucinogen. Awareness of salvia has risen with the Internet, but it was first introduced to mainstream culture in the mid-1900’s. While the small leafy herb is now finding well-deserved popularity in Western minds, it has long been a part of indigenous Central American culture. Ethnobotanists and anthropologists discovered the plant in the Sierra Mazateca mountains of Oaxaca, Mexico, in the course of research into psilocybin mushrooms. After decades of work with the Mazatec people, the gift of a live Salvia divinorum plant made it’s way back to the United States, and from there, the plant has spread across the globe.
The history of Salvia divinorum is long, but the most popular methods of use are relatively modern. Traditionally, salvia has been consumed orally, either through chewing or infusions. Users began smoking Salvia in the late 20th century, which lead to today’s form of consumption: salvia extracts. Oral use of salvia has the drawbacks of relying on fresh leaves and providing a milder experience. Smoking is advantageous because the effects of salvia are stronger and dried plant material can be used. The problem with smoking salvia leaves is that the smoke is very harsh and the amount of active ingredients in the dried leaves varies drastically. Salvia extracts solve these problems by taking the active ingredient, Salvinorin A, from salvia leaves and producing a product with a standardised potency and cleaner smoke. Experienced and novice salvia users alike prefer smoking extract, because once they learn the correct dosage for their needs, they can rely on the extract to deliver the experience they’re after.
Salvia divinorum’s interaction with the brain’s neurotransmitters is unlike the physiological effects of any other hallucinogen, creating a psychedelic experience that is highly unique. The effects of smoking salvia extract are generally classified on a scale from subtle to visionary to amnesic. Light use creates subtle effects such as mood enhancement, clarified perception, relaxation and increased sensuality. Users progressing beyond this point experience a deeper distortion of the senses, leading to auditory and visual hallucination, strange bodily sensations and uncontrollable laughter. Before reaching the most intense effects, salvia users experience contact with foreign beings, identification with external objects and deep spiritual insight. This is the last stage of the salvia experience scale that anyone can report on, because effects beyond this point of intensity lead to total amnesia regarding the trip.
The acute effects of Salvia divinorum rarely last longer than ten minutes, but the residual effects of calmness and heightened sense can last for hours, and the insight and change in perspective brought about during the trip can last for a lifetime. The salvia trip is a healing experience, and the salvia herb is a safe, natural teacher.
More information: SalviaExtract: Encyclopaedia on Salvia History
Salvia divinorum is part of the sage family of plants. On record their are roughly 900 different Salvia species, including many decorative garden sages and Salvia officinalis, which is used for cooking. Salvia is a genus in the mint family (Labiatae) Salvia divinorum is literally the sage (Salvia) of the diviners (divinorum). The plant has a characteristic weak ‘mousy-but-minty’ aroma. It is a native of a small area in Oaxaca, Mexico, growing in mountainous lands where the Mazatec Indian people dwell.
More information: SalviaExtract: Encyclopaedia on Salvia Botanical
Salvinorin A (chemical formula C23H28O8) and salvinorin B are naturally occurring molecules which are different than any other pychoactive compound found in nature, including those engineered in labs such as LSD. Of these only salvinorin A is found psychoactive. It works on the kappa-opioid receptor system. Salvinorin A is present in the dried plant at about 0.18%. Active doses start as low as 100-250 micrograms sublingual; 200-500 micrograms vaporized and inhaled. This translates to 10 times the potency of psilocybin from mushrooms used in similar ways by other Mexican Indians, and more than 1000 times the potency of mescaline, from the peyote cactus (Lophophora williamsii) used as a visionary drug by the Huichol, Tarahumara and other native peoples of northern Mexico.
More information: SalviaExtract: Encyclopaedia on Salvia chemistry
- short duration (when smoked)
- radical perspective shifting
- increase in sensual and aesthetic appreciation
- creative dreamlike experience
- insight into personal issues
- sense of peaceful appreciation for life in the afterglow, sometimes lasting days or weeks
- powerful closed- and open-eye visuals
- general change in consciousness (as with most psychoactives)
- altered perceptions
- change in emotion, anywhere from very happy, to sad, to angry
- change in body temperature, flushing
- sensation of physical push, pressure, or wind
- sensation of entering or perceiving other dimensions, alternate realities
- feeling of ‘presence’ or entity contact
- dissociation at high doses, uncontrolled walking or standing
- loss of awareness of surroundings
- overly-intense experiences
- fear, terror and panic
- increased perspiration
- possible difficulty integrating experiences
- higher doses can cause inability to control muscles and maintain balance: falls are reported.
- mild to moderate headache, usually starting after effects wear off
Daniel Siebert made a S-A-L-V-I-A Experiential Rating Scale that shows the variety of effects that can appear when using salvia.
Level – 1 “S” stands for SUBTLE effects. A feeling that “something” is happening, although it is difficulty to say just what. Relaxation and increased sensual appreciation may be noted. This mild level is useful for meditation and may facilitate sexual pleasure.
Level – 2 “A” stands for ALTERED perception. Colors and textures are more pronounced. Appreciation of music may be enhanced. Space may appear of greater or lesser depth than is usual. But visions do not occur at this level. Thinking becomes less logical, and more playful; short-term memory difficulties may be noted.
Level – 3 “L” stands for LIGHT visionary state. Closed-eye visuals (clear imagery with eyes closed: fractal patterns, vine-like and geometric patterns, visions of objects and designs). The imagery is often two dimensional. If open-eyed visual effects occur, these are usually vague and fleeting. At this level, phenomena similar to the hypnagogic phenomena that some people experience at sleep onset occur. At this level, visions are experienced as “eye candy” but are not confused with reality.
Level – 4 “V” stands for VIVID visionary state. Complex three-dimensional realistic appearing scenes occur. Sometimes voices may be heard. With eyes open, contact with consensual reality will not be entirely lost, but when you close your eyes you may forget about consensus reality and enter completely into a dreamlike scene. Shamanistic journeying to other lands–foreign or imaginary; encounters with beings (entities, spirits) or travels to other ages may occur. You may even live the life of another person. At this level you have entered the shaman’s world. Or if you prefer: you are in “dream time.” With eyes closed, you experience fantasies (dream like happenings with a story line to them). So long as your eyes are closed you may believe they are really occurring. This differs from the “eye candy” closed-eye imagery, of level 3.
Level – 5 “I” stands for IMMATERIAL existence. At this level one may no longer be aware of having a body. Consciousness remains and some thought processes are still lucid, but one becomes completely involved in inner experience and looses all contact with consensual reality. Individuality may be lost; one experiences merging with God/dess, mind, universal consciousness, or bizarre fusions with other objects–real or imagined (e.g. experiences such as merging with a wall or piece of furniture). At this level it is impossible to function in consensual reality, but unfortunately some people do not remain still but move around in this befuddled state. For this reason a sitter is essential to ensure the safety of someone voyaging to these deep levels. To the person experiencing this the phenomenon may be terrifying or exceedingly pleasant; but to an outside observer the individual may appear confused or disoriented.
Level 6 – “A” stands for AMNESIC effects. At this stage, either consciousness is lost, or at least one is unable to later recall what one had experienced. The individual may fall, or remain immobile or thrash around; somnambulistic behavior may occur. Injuries can be sustained without pain being felt; on awakening, the individual will have no recollection of what he/she did, experienced, or said in level 6. People cannot recall what they experience in this very deep trance state. This is not a desirable level, because nothing can latter be recalled of the experience.
More information: SalviaExtract: Encyclopaedia on the Effects of Salvia
Forms of Salvia divinorum
Salvia Extracts for sale are available for purchase in our online store or easily accessible at local head shops in certain countries and US states (see: salvia legal map). They are sold in varying forms of 10X, 20X, 40x, 60x, etc. The “X” symbolizes that the extract being consumed is X times stronger than regular leaves (5X is 5 times as strong as regular leaf). The stronger the extract, the stronger the experience; use at your own risk.
Salvia Extract are made using dried leaf, the extraction process is complex and lengthy and improper usage of chemicals can result in bodily harm. It’s commonly made using 99% pure pro-pantone Acetone or 99% purity: Isopropanol, Rubbing Alcohol, and Isopropyl Alcohol with a combination of Naphtha.
Fresh leaf is primarily used for making a small bundle of leaves that is then held under the tongue for sublingual absorption. Fresh leaf is preferred method for sublingual absorption because it doesn’t break up in your mouth and is easier to chew.
Light – 10 g fresh / 2 g dried
Common – 30 g fresh / 6 g dried
Strong – 50 g fresh / 10 g dried
Dried leaf are prepared by leaving fresh leaves out in the sun. Other faster methods to dry leaf require you to bake it in an oven at 150 degrees Fahrenheit until the leaf becomes crispy. Dried salvia leaf is used for smoking. To use dried leaf for sublingual absorption, soak them in water for ten (10) minutes. Beware that Soaking dried leaf in water can lose some of its potency. If you plan on making Salvia Extract its best to us dried leaf.
Light : 0.25g
Common : 0.5g
Strong : 0.75 – 1.00g
Salvia Tinctures are made by dissolving extract into pure Salvinorin A or a semi-pure form of it into ethyl alcohol. It is meant to be used sublingually by holding a certain amount under the tongue for a period of time. Using Tincture usually will increase the duration of the Salvia trip but the effects will be weaker. Beware that holding strong tincture under the tongue for long periods of time can eventually cause blistering. It is sometimes best to dilute the pure tincture with water (although potency may be decreased).
To make a tea first crush 1/8 oz of dried leaves, bring water to a boiling temperature, drop the leaf into water for around 5 minutes. Afterwards, let it simmer for around 15 minutes. Salvinorin A is not orally activated, so the tea has to be kept in the mouth for around 15-20 seconds each sip. This tea, if properly brewed and consumed, can produce a state of trance when closing the eyes and a whole night of vivid and intense dreams plus some occasional closed eye visuals.
Tolerance and addiction potential
The use of Salvinorin A is not habit-forming drug and generally the need to want to use more will decrease after repeated use. Immediate usage within 30-120 minutes will decrease the effects of salvia the cause is unknown, but probably linked to how your body deals with the after-effects of Salvinorin A.
Long term tolerance to the effects of Salvinorin A does not occur. In fact, users report that this compound has a reverse tolerance and actually becomes stronger over time and with repeated usage. Salvinorin A is not affected by built up tolerance for other hallucinogens. Salvinorin A is likely to overpower other hallucinogens effects when used in combination.
Australia : Possession and sale is illegal.
Belgium : Possession and sale is illegal.
Canada: Possession and sale is illegal.
Croatia : Possession and sale is illegal.
Czech Republic : Possession and sale is illegal.
Denmark : Salvinorin A is a Class B drug.
Germany : Possession and sale is illegal.
Germany: Possession and sale is illegal.
Hong Kond: Possession and sale is illegal.
Italy : Possession and sale is illegal.
Japan: Possession and sale is illegal.
Latvia : Possession and sale is illegal.
Lithuania : Possession and sale is illegal.
Poland : Possession and sale is illegal.
Portugal: Possession and sale is illegal.
Republic of Ireland: Possession and sale is illegal.
Romania : Possession and sale is illegal.
Spain : Possession and sale is illegal.
Sweden : Possession and sale is illegal.
Switzerland: Possession and sale is illegal.
South Korea: Possession and sale is illegal.
UK : Possession and sale is legal
USA: (States where its Illegal)
Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Guam
Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota
Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania,
South Dakota, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Wyoming
Usage methods for this compound within our tutorial index include:
- Salvia Trip Reports
- Salvia 10X Experience: “Recent Salvia Trip of Mine”
- Salvia 15X Experience: “The Space Between”
- Salvia 20X Experience: “Outdoor Connect”
- Salvia 20X Experience: “My First Salvia Trip”