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I may have the answer to everything. (Stanislov Grof)

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According to Stan Grof, basically a bad trip caused a "Condenced Experience"(CoEX) (in his book, LSD Psychotherapy, or something along those lines)


And the DP is basically this. I think the book said something about how the self-esteem wasnt formed strongly enough in adoloscents and children so this is possible to happen from a bad trip. 


"Sometimes the integration of the [LSD] session takes days or weeks. It is important to encourage the client to keep the emotional channels open and continue the uncovering process, rather than try to shut them off prematurely by psychological means or with tranquillizers. 


When the spontaneous process does not have enough dynamic strength to complete itself, the sitters should do intense activating work with the client? An interesting alternative to the approach? is use of prolonged hyperventilation? Intense breathing, continued for a period of about thirty to forty-five minutes, tends to collect the tensions in the body into a stereotyped pattern of armoring and eventually release them. This is associated with activation of important material from various levels of the unconsciousness. This is a very effective way of clearing residual problems after a psychedelic experience. The use of this technique requires certain background information and special instructions? [the technique is named Holotropic Breathwork; see www.holotropic.com for details. ]


If neither of the above techniques brings a satisfactory psychological resolution, another psychedelic session should be scheduled as soon as possible. The general principle applied here might seem paradoxical to a conventional psychiatrist. Psychedelic therapy can be discontinued at any tie after a successful session that was well integrated. If it resulted in an intensification of clinical symptoms or a prolonged reaction, continuation of therapy is indicated. The basic ideas is that this is not due to some unpredictable effect of LSD, but represents an unfinished unconscious gestalt that should be completed."

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I believe HPPD is damage to the neurons... the physical structure of the brain.  I do think these kinds of treatments can be helpful to integrate things psychologically though.


I'm currently seeing a therapist who does EMDR therapy.  I've only had one session but it's interesting.  I'll give my thoughts on it if it's helpful.

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Ok this is really intresting. Great find! i have done breath work before tho not Holotropic yet..


I am curently  in dialouge with the Groff Foundation.. and have just answered about 20 questions from them, relating to my drug use that lead to HPPD and onset of HPPD, symptomology, duration, what i have done to try and get it better etc etc etc...


The answers will be send to Stansilov Grof

, He will  then reply with his thaughts and recomendations etc.. Maybe i can post the response here.

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these are the questions i recieved from the Groff Foundation along with my answers.. its kind of personal, tho my identity is concealed :) Shareing is likley a good thing. Maybe others may have similaritys in answers to there questions.


When you say quite young, how young was that?

Way too young. Likely 13 years old. It was with the influence of my older brother who gave me my first use of LSD. He led me in the wrong direction. Although people get HPPD from using LSD at any age and also they can get it from taking just one trip. The onset of HPPD was around age 15 years.

 How old are you now?
I’m 38 years now.

What do you know about the dosage and purity of what you took?
I don’t know anything about the purity. It was just standard LSD tabs, “red dragons”, “Robots”, “Microdots”, Mushrooms etc., etc. I have also used DMT once.
Was this multiple times, or just once?
Multiple times (many)

were your symptoms of persistent visual distortions from the beginning, or started later?  If they started later, was there anything happening in your life at that point that you think may be related or triggered something?
I had Persistent visual distortions from the beginning.
I cannot recall anything significant happening later.
 Basically I had taken some acid, I had been up all night, and was tripping during the day. As far as I can remember, the trip was traumatic “bad” towards the end.
As far as I can remember, I may have taken some Valium to help me sleep or to “nock myself out”. Upon awakening, I can remember saying to a friend, I can still see all the same visuals, and that was the onset of HPPD for me.

If there were other people with you during the initial experiences who also participated, did/do any of them also have HPPD symptoms or other difficulties?
None of the others had HPPD or related difficulties.

what have you tried so far to clear the symptoms? Which things you have tried seemed to help some (and if so for how long), which did not help but made it worse, and which were neutral?
I have tried many things to clear symptoms. Meditation (meditate 1 hour each day) many types, currently doing Bi-Neural beats, in an attempt to establish new pathways please see www.centerpointe.com
This may be helping in some ways, especially stress levels and way I respond to it, activates relaxation response and strengthens “the witness”. Stress seems to worsen HPPD.
Yoga in India with great saints / masters. See Link:
Faith in the Divine, whatever that is for the individual helps.
Various Yogic tequniques.Basically just the correlating health benefits
 Shamanic work, see http://www.sotems.com.au/
Transpersonal work and Counselling, see
Some Breathe work, Sweat Lodges.
Trained in specific energy work, India also: this one focused on Neuro-Biological changes to the brain thru transference of energy, so it was attractive to me at the time.  (Neutral)
 Some medications, Clonazepam, Keppra, Sinamet.  
Clonazepam seems to take the edge off it slightly. Also the same with Valium. Though the problem with this is that it’s highly addictive and turns me into a bit of a zombie.
I am 100% medication free now.
Lots of personal development etc.
When I’m in “high states” from meditation, it seems as though I may get some relief from it, similar to transcendence. Temporarily, maybe for a few hours. This occurs when I’m feeling “happy.”
Keppra likely made it worse.
Caffeine and stimulants make it worse.
When I enter a dark space makes it worse. It is worse at night time.
With the personal development work etc.  Managing and learning to master my own emotional state is helpful, though does not take away fully. Although when I’m in a peak emotional state, I would say there may be times when I do not notice it.
For example: I have been into elite fitness, lifting weight. Possibly at those times that require so much focus i.e. lifting heavy weights, I may not notice at that time or get temporary relief possibly. Also building up my physical body has benefits. Feeling good about myself etc Tho i have now done this to a point that i have injured myself quite badly with torn tendons. I think the discipline of Natrual bodybuilding was my way of Hideing My HPPD from the world and a type of avoidance stratergy, so i dont have to deal with it, and people on some level.
Any stressors to the central nervous system seem to make it worse.
Lack of sleep makes it worse.
Stress makes it worse.
Obsessing about it / thinking about it and reading about it on the Internet makes it worse.
I would like to try these glasses soon and see if they may help Irlen Diagnostic Clinic - Buderim, Sunshine Coast QLD
Irlen Diagnostic Clinic - Buderim, Sunshine Coast QLD
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Can you describe which particular distortions you are experiencing, and which ones of these are more-or-less always there and which come and go (if there are some that come and go)?
All the visual distortions are basically, always there, unless I have temporary breakthrough as mentioned above. Colour distortion, movement, visual snow, halos around objects. Basically all of the visual phenomena.
I have all the visual phenomena of hppd below taken from Google:
There are a number of perceptual changes that can accompany HPPD. Typical symptoms of the disorder include: halos or auras surrounding objects, trails following objects in motion, difficulty distinguishing between colors, apparent shifts in the hue of a given item, the illusion of movement in a static setting, air assuming a grainy or textured quality (visual snow or static, by popular description, not to be confused with normal "blue field entoptic phenomenon"), distortions in the dimensions of a perceived object, and a heightened awareness of floaters. The visual alterations experienced by those with HPPD are not homogeneous and there appear to be individual differences in both the number and intensity of symptoms.[citation needed]
Visual aberrations can occur periodically in healthy individuals – e.g. afterimages after staring at a light, noticing floaters inside the eye, or seeing specks of light in a darkened room. However, in people with HPPD, symptoms are typically persistent enough that the individual cannot ignore them.[citation needed]
There is some uncertainty about to what degree visual snow constitutes a true HPPD symptom. There are many individuals who have never used a drug which could have caused the onset, but yet experience the same grainy vision reported by HPPD sufferers. There are a few potential reasons for this, the most obvious of which being the theory that the drug usage may exaggerate the intensity of visual snow. Another theory is that instead, there may be no change in the severity or magnitude of the visual snow, but perhaps the drug usage opens sensory pathways that result in the individual becoming more aware of any visual disturbances that may have simply not been noticed before the incidence of drug use. As for root cause of visual snow, some theories suggest that it is the result of thermal noise in the visual cortex or in the 'Optic Pathway' (encompassing photoreceptor cells on the retina, the optic nerve, and the optic chiasm[1]), as eye tests for individuals who experience visual snow often reveal that physically, the eye is perfectly normal, and in many cases the individual still maintains 20/20 vision.
HPPD usually has a visual manifestation. Drugs affecting the auditory sense, like DiPT, may produce auditory disturbances, though there are few known cases. Some psychedelic drugs can produce temporary tinnitus-like symptoms as a side effect.[2][3]
It also should be noted that the visuals do not constitute true hallucinations in the clinical sense of the word; people with HPPD recognize the visuals to be illusory, or pseudohallucinations, and thus maintain the ability to determine what is real (in contrast to some mental illnesses such as schizophrenia).[4]
HPPD Visuals are a lot more amplified in the dark.

At this time, given the time since they began, would you say that the intensity of your symptoms is decreasing, staying the same, or increasing as time goes by?
Likely staying the same.  Except for the way I manage it, as the threshold for what I can handle is higher; likely this has come about through meditation. So the way I respond to it is different. Sometime I feel I am making progress when I’m most engaged in life and have other aspects of my life “working.”  i.e. career / relationships etc
Maybe sometimes there are some improvements with all the work I’m doing on myself. I would like to fully investigate the area of Neuro-plasticity and apply various tequniques to my own life, I’m not sure if this would help?
Is there anything else about your general health that you think could be relevant?
No not that I can think of.

How has your condition affected your life?  that is, which things you want to do or need to do are difficult or challenging or impossible because of symptoms?
My focus is not as good. It is difficult for me to achieve one pointedness because the visuals are there.
 I’m a very capable human being. It is just temporary while I get things back on track.
 I left school at year 11 because I did not know what was happening.
 I went on to do a diploma in transpersonal counselling, though did not quite finish at the time due to a possible “secondary gain.” At present I’m working on various business projects and in training as Hypnotherapist.
This has made my transpersonal / spiritual practices more challenging as I have the HPPD to contend with at the same time unfortunately.
It’s like I can do everything and everything, although it’s not the same, because I have the additional “world” to contend with, at the same time. Which makes many things more challenging and it can be exhausting. People with HPPD tend to isolate themselves a lot.

I do "hope" i have coverd everything. I am always happy to share more, and always open to skype if you feel it would be beneficial. I would love to hear about any suggestions you may have. Im willing to jump right in and give anything a try.
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I Shared your Post  LethargicAcid with

With the Grof Foundation: This was there Reply :-)



Thanks for sharing this with me.
Interesting stuff being discussed in the forums.
About Stan's comments, LSD Psychotherapy was published in 1980, quite some time ago, and based on Dr. Grof's carefully controlled treatment approach that emphasized set (preparation, intention) and setting (safe space, qualified support) as critical for the work.  Not the kind of use that is that you had, or that most others have. 
It will be interesting to see how he responds to this subject now.  35 years is a long time, and there has been a lot of experience since then.
He does not like to generalize, since each person is different, so I will make sure that he is okay to publish something on the list that may in fact apply just to you, and ask you not to publish it without permission.  Okay?
Fond Regards,

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  • 3 weeks later...

This is so hard to understand with brain fog >.<


Edit: OP is really bad basically and explaining what is being put in to practice here but Stanislov Grof is a psychiatrist who studies hallucinogenic affects etc, primarily those of LSD I gather from his wiki page.


Im not exactly sure the the OP is implying as a treatment other than maybe breathing techniques?


Also if there is any implication that LSD may be a treatment, thats all together ridiculous, as the venom of a snake doesn't cure the snake bite. 

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  • 1 year later...


I'm a philosopher/scientist very interested in HPPD.

Could you please post the response that Grof foundation has sent you? (I know this thread is very old, but I thought it won't hurt to try)

It is very importaint to me, because I'm surprised that HPPD is so rarely mentioned even in very high quality psychedelic scientific literature. It would be great to know what Grof foundation state about this issue.

I'm sometimes attending to conferences talking about psychedelics and I never forget to mention the risk of HPPD and the fact how little we know about this problem. That's why this answer might help me to better understand the issue and share it with fellow scholars.

Best regards and I apologise for necroing this thread,


Edited by Invoker
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  • 4 months later...
49 minutes ago, fruitgun said:

Bumping this, Holotropic Breathing seems to be an interesting option. I might consider consulting a Transpersonal Psychologist.

You think it might be psychological?

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HPPD cases are different. For me I'd say, yes it's psychologically. I am basically traumatized from a bad trip. It sounds like Holotropic Breathing could help dealing with stuff like anxiety, depression and DP/DR which are obviously psychologically. I don't know about visuals but HB seems to be heavily neurogenesis-promoting so I am sure it could also help with possible neurological malfunctions (just like meditation, yoga, exercise and even CBT can too). However HB can trigger/ bring up a lot of psychological issues and is often compared to a drug-free psychedelic trip. That is why it is probably not recommended for everyone, like psychotic people and probably not for sensitive people with severe HPPD.

I guess I'd try trauma-integration with a combination of micro-to-low dose cannabis and meditation, before I would try HB. My insurance wouldn't even cover Transpersonal Psychotherapy and doing it without guidance sounds very stupid. Also a competent therapist would be able to evaluate if one is stable enough to do this kind of therapy.

It was just a thought that this method could help people who feel relatively stable AND whose symptoms primarily arose from mental issues or trauma. 

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