Honestly, I had no idea that such massive doses of LSD had been used. I came across a thread describing a "thumbprint" of LSD, a dose based on sticking one's thumb into pure LSD powder and licking it off, an amount equivalent to hundreds of doses, several milligrams of pure LSD (old school doses were typically 100 micrograms, sometimes only 20-50 mcg these days). Several people on the thread had taken this dose, typically described as an initiation of trust into the family of folks who lovingly supply LSD to the clan of deadheads, rainbow gatherings, etc.
[EDIT - just to be on the safe side, please understand that I'm not recommending this to anyone. Just sharing interesting info from the thread linked above. Personally, I'm a fan of small safe, reasonable doses. Also, although I can't point to any super hard data, for whatever reason it seems that reports of long term problems seem to come more from LSD users, possibly DMT users, but not so much, if any, from mushroom (psilocybin) users]
What follows is a substantial amount of selected quotes from several people, mainly two individuals. [note that 1 mg = 1000 mcg]:
What's it like? - It's not possible to describe what it's like. Except maybe DEATH.
What did you see? - ALL
What did you do? - My body did nothing, but lay down. I was no more, just ALL
Eating LSD crystal is intense, magical, crazy and the ULTIMATE ACT OF SUBMISSION TO THE PSYCHEDELIC STATE
You feel it almost instantly. LSD crystal has an energy to it. Having a jar of it in my pocket is enough to alter my consciousness. As soon as it touches your skin or goes in your mouth you can feel it. A lot of folks will throw up within minutes. This is an exorcism of sorts. Like all the negative energy being cast out of your body. Then you lay down and learn. As for the experience I just couldn't do it justice to describe it. You're never the same again. A thumbprint doesn't open the door of perception it blows it off the hinges. You melt into eternity. You let go and die into the moment which is all. There is no you anymore only all. The intensity of this can't be described, but you realize as you're slipping away that it's familiar. This is because it becomes quite clear this is exactly what happens when you die. After an eternity you slowly start to come back in pieces. You feel reborn and a completely different person. You don't ever come completely down or back. This isn't a bad thing, but it's very scary at first.
It is hard to describe a thumbprint. Human language cannot describe an experience that encompasses all of life. Every cell of every creature or living thing that ever lived or will live is connected by the energy or light. When we die our body and our ego is gone. We become one with eternity or the light or God or whatever name you wish to call it. A thumbprint allows this to happen and return to our physical body. My first print I laid down and quickly realized that this was my actual death. You watch the whole process unfold with complete awareness. I didn't cling to my body I just realized my life had passed. As I was spiraling up or out I saw my life evolve through the years I lived. The happiness, the sadness, the people I loved and the people I didn't. The joy that I gave and the pain that I caused. I saw the true nature of reality and why things were the way they were. As I got higher I saw the nature of reality on the cosmic scale and saw that the reason for our evolution was to experience love. To love is to have experienced the finest of life. Then came the moment were it was time to let go. As I did it came for me and I sobbed uncontrollably for I realized that the light or energy we call god or creation was perfect. It was pure unconditional love.
What else could god have been I realized. That glint of innocent perfection in a baby's eye. The light was pure as the heart of Jesus Christ. I dissolved into it and died. Since there was no me only the all, I cannot remember the rest because there was no me to remember. After forever I slowly descended into my body. I spent days awake afterwards talking to myself. I vowed to god to spread LSD so others could see the light. I vowed to look at every person as the lord and treat them as such. I was reborn and continue to live by the values I learned.
LSD is a direct message from God. Period. I don't think we get another chance. We can love each other or we can kill each other, but it is up to us.
I feel high all the time still and it's been years.
I must stress that I was in the company of very evolved and older people that made sure my experiences were optimal. These were kind old spirits that had been where I was going many years before and many times. They held me as a baby every inch of the way.
You have heard of near death experiences right. A thumbprint is a beyond death experience.
It is something one cannot just "decide to do one day" and EVERYONE I know who has done it has had a pretty high LSD tolerance and experience level. It is more a symbol of trust than key to enlightenment as the experience is completely overwhelming and memory is scrambled between acid dream and "reality" with most of it blank. I had persistent imagery for several months and for the following week felt "rode hard and put away wet".
When I showed up at the trailer he had a funny grin on his face and he said "I hope you don't have plans." We went in and his old lady was there, unusual, and she was holding a small watch glass with the crystal spice in it. She said "honey it is time to grow up". They then told me to stick in my thumb and press. By then I was nervously curious and my hands were sweaty so I pulled my thumb free with a generous coating on it. I looked at it and I swear I could feel it starting then I stuck my thumb in my mouth and let go. The first hour or so I think I was in and out of the world then "I" just disappeared for eternity. IMO part of me still is there.
I am facing death due to a botched angiogram and I know I will meet with the part of me which rides the eternal winds when my time is over. I know that death is a mere transition, I know this because I died that day in late '78 and arose again reborn. My priorities of life were refocused and I have been working to integrate the new paradigm of being which was created by that day every since. I think if a lesson or enlightenment came from this it is that I consciously participate in my life to a much greater degree. This is not the "easy' way to live in a world of injustice and cruelty. I have been forced to accept the balance of positive and negative without imposing my own desire.
And I still must struggle mightily to integrate and exist in this society. My friends old lady said it was time to grow up but she did not say I would outgrow myself. I have absolutely NO regrets although the changes in my mind and thought process have made interfacing with traditional thinking a challenge.
Like China said every day I know I 'thumbprinted" but the funny thing is no matter how you rewire your brain life still brings the same challenges. I still have to stuggle with the challenges but I believe that I may have somewhat more novel solutions to some things than some others, but all in all I am remarkably Ward Cleaver considering.
One last thing, I have experienced literal death (heart stopped) and the irresistibility of death and strong psychedelic experience are quite similar. In Death one realizes the ineffable nature of the experience and resisting is futile, much like resisting a thumbprint, it is just NOT possible.
There is a massive difference between 500mcg and a thumbprint. They're not even comparable trips. As for saturation effect this is from medical research in the 50's comparing doses of LSD. There may not be a noticeable difference between 1000 and 2000 mcg. There is a huge difference between 1000 mcg and 40 or 50 mg. Of course the researchers never ventured into this dosage range.
Usually the person is deemed ready by those who can tell. They are taken care of before and after the print by the family, this may take up to a week before you're functioning again. Sometimes skeptics are printed, but their reactions are usually very, very shattering. It's hard when your whole belief system explodes and the truth is revealed. You basically have to start from scratch. All those years you thought you knew the truth and God, then in a matter of minutes you find you didn't know shit, then you die.
It's affected me on so many different levels. Mentally it has changed my whole outlook on life and my perception of the world. Spiritually it has given me the absolute faith in eternity that can only be had from being eternity. My philosophies are all based on my experiences. I no longer see the world as a bunch of separate species and things, but a connected matrix of biology and energy that flows to and from a core that is the pure light of unconditional love. Physically it's affected me in that you never come back down completely. But why would you anyway? You can't look at the truth and then pretend you didn't see it and that it doesn't exist. A thumbprint is a life long commitment. As for visual activity, it's constant. But I hardly notice it anymore. Eternity is in the here an now. So is my life, so they constantly flow together or against each other. Meditation is key for me now.
I no longer consider my physical reality my true reality.
I guess you could sum it up as Robert Hunter did after his night of 250,000 mcg, "I died 1000 deaths." That's what it really is, death. Most people live their lives unsure about what happens when we die. Even the most devoutly religious have anxiety about the big moment. I don't, I welcome it. That's how it's changed me.
The 50-500 mcg range will saturate the serotonin system however LSD also affects other receptors like dopamine and noradrenaline to a lesser degree, at ultradoses these effects come more strongly into play negating the plateau effect. The difference between 500 mcgs and 10000+ is incomparable as is the mode of ingestion. The change begins as the crystals melt on your tongue and is totally unlike eating a pile of pre-layed paper [blotter]. One senses his imminent ego death coming as the crystals are absorbed into the tongue. The knowledge that you are totally in the care of family is what one clings to as long as concepts such as family contain meaning then one is simply ... gone. When awareness returns it is changed and IMO forever. I have to laugh when Ram Dass says he "came down" - returning to sobriety is not the same as being unchanged. One does come down from a print but NOT UNCHANGED. I have had the privilege of speaking with Ram Dass on several occasions and to this older tripper his "mark" is as clear as if it were painted upon his forehead.
It's a feeling of energy. You feel it instantly. Especially after your first one. Your nervous system jolts to attention as if to say, "here we go."
On a thumbprint size dosage you no longer have any beliefs. There is no you. Reactions can vary on the way up, but soon all your beliefs, attitudes and perceptions completely vaporize along with physical reality. None of it survives a print. There is no I anymore only ALL. Afterwards your beliefs are very different or they may be similar if your beliefs were close to the truth to begin with.
People can bullshit their way through a lot of intense psychedelic experiences. Somehow they can hold onto their twisted ego games sometimes. On a thumbprint that's not even a possibility. You can't bullshit Eternity when it's blasting you to pieces. The more you try to hold on the quicker and harder it burns you. You dissolve and dissolve till there's no you left to hold on.
On a print you can go quietly and easily or you can go kicking and screaming, but you are going to go no matter what.
The thing about thumbprints is that after the first hour there is no you to create fear or trick your body into shutting down. We have taken BP and pulse of people on thumbprint size doses before and there is a slightly elevated BP and heart rate, but not too extreme. These were experienced people though, and there was no fear involved.
We can only speculate as to these hypothesis, as no studies will ever be done. The fact that these doses are usually only done by people ready for them greatly helps that there are so little negative outcomes. That's why I believe prints should be done in the mountains with family and not in a hospital like a lab rat.
One thing I have noticed is at print doses after the first hour when you have been vaporized and are completely gone breathing seems to stabilize. Before that the anxiety and fear have folks breathing like they're in a marathon. After they have let go though it seems that the body continues to function quite normally while there away. It's that first hour that's so traumatic.
There could be a dosage range though that can cause physiological harm. We don't know it and we never will, and people have survived more than a gram [that would be 10,000 x 100 mcg doses].
On a normal large dose of LSD there is the high visual activity, sensory alteration, synesthesia, ego loss, etc, etc. On a thumbprint it feels like you completely short circuit your brain. All cognitive function stops. Like pouring water on a breaker panel it pops, then all connections and activity are fried. The cognitive filter is shut off and eternity is able to creep in. Obviously all brain activity doesn't stop because you keep breathing and your heart keeps pumping. The brain stem, hindbrain, medulla, pons and cerebellum are probably not affected.