Turbina corymbosa – Ololiuhqui

 

Turbina corymbosa is also offered under the name Rivea corymbosa. It is a rare, white-blooming vine, that can be found in the mountains of South Mexico. Ololiuhqui is a traditional drug of the Mexican Indians, and the early Spanish invaders already reported about its use as an occult drug; with its aid the Aztec priests obtained their visions. The term Ololiuhqui is occasionally used also for ipomoea-species.

Use: 50–500 seeds are finely ground, steeped in a cup of water and subsequently swallowed. The Indios occasionally prepare a tea from the leaves as well. Some people supposedly felt already distinct effects using a lesser amount of seeds.

Active constituents: Most of all d-lysergic acid amide (LSA, ergine), a substance which is closely related to LSD, and various secondary alkaloids.

Effects: A state of inebriation of about 6 hours followed by a relaxed feeling. During the first hour nausea is likely to occur. Most often it comes quite quickly to a sleepy state, in which the inebriated often is easily suggestible; hallucinations occur. These are distinctly weaker than those caused by LSD. The content of what is seen during the trip is strongly dependant on the expectations of the user and the control of the inebriation by another person, if such a control takes place. In native Indian ceremonies Ololiuhqui-inebriated persons are led by shamans through their experience; they get in contact with spirits and demons and thereby find answers to their questions. Rarely, single persons seem not to respond to Ololiuhqui; they report only a slight euphoria.

Side effects: Patients with liver diseases should not and pregnant women are strongly advised NOT to take LSA. Besides that the side effects that are described in the section hallucinogens can occur.

Suppliers: Seeds are available in ethnobotanical trade.

Miscellaneous: The effects that are described under ipomoea and argyreia in the second part also occur here, since essentially the same substances are involved.

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