UserWiki:David Hedlund/Case reports

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Paul Stamets’ stuttering transformation

One spring afternoon toward the end of his freshman year, walking alone along the wooded ridgeline above campus, Stamets ate a whole bag of mushrooms, perhaps ten grams, thinking that was a proper dose. (Four grams is a lot.) As the psilocybin was coming on, Stamets spied a particularly beautiful oak tree and decided he would climb it. “As I’m climbing the tree, I’m literally getting higher as I’m climbing higher.” Just then the sky begins to darken, and a thunderstorm lights up the horizon. The wind surges as the storm approaches, and the tree begins to sway.

“I’m getting vertigo but I can’t climb down, I’m too high, so I just wrapped my arms around the tree and held on, hugging it tightly. The tree became the axis mundi, rooting me to the earth. ‘This is the tree of life,’ I thought; it was expanding into the sky and connecting me to the universe. And then it hits me: I’m going to be struck by lightning! Every few seconds there’s another strike, here, then there, all around me. On the verge of enlightenment, I’m going to be electrocuted. This is my destiny! The whole time, I’m being washed by warm rains. I am crying now, there is liquid everywhere, but I also feel one with the universe."

“And then I say to myself, what are my issues if I survive this? Paul, I said, you’re not stupid, but stuttering is holding you back. You can’t look women in the eyes. What should I do? Stop stuttering now—that became my mantra. Stop stuttering now, I said it over and over and over."

“The storm eventually passed. I climbed down from the tree and walked back to my room and went to sleep. That was the most important experience of my life to that point, and here’s why: The next morning, I’m walking down the sidewalk, and here comes this girl I was attracted to. She’s way beyond my reach. She’s walking toward me, and she says, ‘Good morning, Paul. How are you?’ I look at her and say, ‘I’m doing great.’ I wasn’t stuttering! And I have hardly ever stuttered since."

“And that’s when I realized I wanted to look into these mushrooms.”"

See also

UserWiki:David Hedlund/Psychic experiences