Psychedelics are substances (natural or laboratory made) which cause profound changes in a one’s perceptions of reality. While under the influence of hallucinogens, users might hallcuniate visually and auditorily.

Disclaimer: Psychedelic drugs offer some of the most powerful and intense psychological experiences. Additionally these substances are illegal in many places. We understand that even though these substances are illegal, their use occurs frequently. We do not condone breaking of the law. By providing accurate information about these substances, we encourage the user to make responsible decisions and practice harm reduction.

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Ayahuasca Also known as:

  • (2-Indol-3-ylethyl)dimethylamine
  • 1H-Indole-3-ethanamine, N,N-dimethyl-[ACD/Index Name]
  • 2-(1H-Indol-3-yl)-N,N-dimethylethanamin[German][ACD/IUPAC Name]
  • 2-(1H-Indol-3-yl)-N,N-dimethylethanamine[ACD/IUPAC Name]
  • 2-(1H-Indol-3-yl)-N,N-diméthyléthanamine[French][ACD/IUPAC Name]
  • DMT
  • Indole, 3-(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl)-
  • Indole, 3-[2- (dimethylamino)ethyl]-
  • Indole, 3-[2-(dimethylamino)ethyl]-
  • MFCD00055989[MDL number]
  • N,N-Dimethyl-1H-indole-3-ethanamine
  • N,N-dimethyl-1H-indole-3-ethylamine
  • N,N-DMT
  • tryptamine, dimethyl-
  • [2-(1H-Indol-3-yl)-ethyl]-dimethyl-
  • [2-(1H-indol-3-yl)ethyl]dimethylamine
  • [2-(1H-Indol-3-yl)-ethyl]-dimethyl-amine
  • 1H-Indole-3-ethanamine,N,N-dimethyl-
  • 2-(1H-indol-3-yl)ethyl-dimethyl-amine
  • 2-(1H-indol-3-yl)-N,N-dimethyl-ethanamine
  • 2-(3-indolyl)ethyldimethylamine
  • 3-(2-(Dimethylamino)ethyl)-Indole
  • 3-(2-Dimethylaminoethyl) indole
  • 3-(2-dimethylaminoethyl)indole
  • 3-[2- (Dimethylamino)ethyl]-Indole
  • 3-[2-(dimethylamino)ethyl]indole
  • 5-22-10-00048 (Beilstein Handbook Reference)[Beilstein]
  • WLN: T56 BMJ D2N1&1

A concoction made of two or more plants that contain at least an MAOI and DMT, the combination of which allows the DMT to work orally. Typically associated to south american cultures. Also, sometimes approximated synthetically by taking an external MAOI with extracted DMT. Causes intense, spiritually orientated hallucinogenic experiences.


Of these, it most commonly consists of a DMT-containing plant source in combination with one that contains an MAOI or RIMA (typically sources like B. caapi vine or syrian rue) to produce uniquely potent, sometimes medicinal, psychedelic effects. The co-consumption of an MAOI agent is necessary for the combination to work, as the DMT molecule (which is a monoamine closely related to serotonin) is rendered almost entirely inactive when digested by itself due to the presence of monoamine oxidase enzymes in the stomach, which rapidly degrades it.

Ayahuasca is used as a traditional spiritual medicine in ceremonies among the Indigenous peoples of Amazonian Peru, many of whom say that they received the instructions in its use directly from the plants and plant spirits themselves. Ayahuasca was first described outside of Indigenous communities in the early 1950s by Harvard ethnobotanist Richard Evans Schultes, who became aware of the Native communities who use it for divinatory and healing purposes. As is the case with psychedelics in general, ayahuasca is not considered to be dependence-forming or addictive by the research and medical community.

Nevertheless, unpredictable adverse reactions such as anxiety, paranoia, delusions and psychotic breaks can still always occur, particularly among those predisposed to psychiatric disorders. While these negative reactions or “bad trips” can often be attributed to factors like the user’s inexperience or improper preparation of their set and setting, they have been known to happen spontaneously among even the most experienced of users as well. This is why despite its scientifically-backed reputation for possessing both negligible-to-no physical and neurotoxicity, it is still highly advised to approach this powerful and unpredictable hallucinogenic substance with the proper amount of precaution, and harm reduction practices if one chooses to use it.


A 1000-year-old collection of drug paraphernalia found in a rock shelter in Bolivia features traces of five psychoactive chemicals, including cocaine and components of ayahuasca. Ayahuasca ceremoniesThere have been several documented cases of avoidable deaths caused by frauds pretending to be shamans during "traditional" ayahuasca ceremonies. The ingredient known to cause problems is known specifically as brugmansia, which can cause issues when co-administered with an MAOI. An effective ayahuasca brew does not have to be more complicated than a suitable source of DMT (such as mimosa or acacia) and a reversible inhibitor of monoamine oxidase A (RIMA or MAOI).

Using other ingredients along with the ayahuasca can potentially be dangerous; any potential interactions should be carefully researched before ingestion. Another concern of ayahuasca ceremonies is the culture of mysticism and pseudoscience produced from centuries of mythological ritual, leading to a bias following the delusion of a single cultural narrative. There is an irrational belief that ayahuasca should only to be used in the Amazon rainforest in the presence of a shaman. This belief leads many to shun the idea of taking ayahuasca outside of this potentially toxic environment for no logical reason.




Common NameDimethyltryptamine
Systematic nameDimethyltryptamine
Std. InChi
Std. InChiKey
Avg. Mass188.2688 Da
Molecular Weight188.2688
Monoisotopic Mass188.131348 Da
Nominal Mass188
ChemSpider ID5864

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Dose Chart

Duration Chart

Ayahuasca Duration Data
Onset20-60 minutes
Duration4-8 hours
After-effects1-8 hours

Auditory Effects

Psychological Effects

The cognitive effects of ayahuasca are described by many as extremely sober and clear-headed in style when compared to other commonly used psychedelics such as LSD or psilocin. This is despite the fact that it contains a large number of psychedelic typical and unique cognitive effects. The most prominent of these typical effects include:

Pharmacological Effects

Ayahuasca’s psychedelic effects have been confirmed to come from its efficacy at the 5-HT2A receptor as a partial agonist. However, the role of these interactions and how they result in the psychedelic experience continues to remain an object of scientific eludication. Harmala alkaloids are classed as MAO-inhibiting beta-carbolines. The three most studied harmala alkaloids in the B. caapi vine are harmine, harmaline and tetrahydroharmine. Harmine and harmaline are selective and reversible inhibitors of monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A), while tetrahydroharmine is a weak serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SRI). This inhibition of MAO-A allows DMT to diffuse unmetabolized past the membranes in the stomach and small intestine, eventually crossing the blood–brain barrier (which, by itself, requires no MAO-A inhibition) to activate receptor sites in the brain. Without RIMAs or MAOIs of MAO-A, DMT would be oxidized (and thus rendered biologically inactive) by monoamine oxidase enzymes in the digestive tract.

Physical Effects

  • Stimulation or Sedation - In terms of its effects on the physical energy levels of the user, ayahuasca is entirely setting dependent. For example, when taken in social settings with fast-paced music or during physically demanding situations (such as running, walking, climbing or dancing) it becomes stimulating and energetic. In contrast, however, when taken in peaceful environments (such as darkened rooms with comfortable seating) it can become relaxing, peaceful and sedating.
  • Spontaneous physical sensations - The "body high" of ayahuasca can be described as a pleasurable, warm, soft and all-encompassing glow. For some, it is manifested spontaneously at different, unpredictable points throughout the trip, but for others, it maintains a consistent presence that steadily rises with the onset and hits its limit once the peak has been reached.
  • Nausea - In its traditional form, ayahuasca is famous for its purgative properties which can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and cold flashes. This effect is known as "la purga" or "the purge" and its presence is completely avoidable and dependent on the specific form or recipe of ayahuasca being used. The intense vomiting and occasional diarrhea it induces is often considered by many shamans and experienced users of ayahuasca to be an essential part of the experience as it represents a speculative healing process and the release of negative emotions built up over the course of one's life. Studies have demonstrated a certain truth behind this speculation and shown that the purging process can clear the body of worms and other tropical parasites. Harmala alkaloids themselves have been shown to expel parasitic worms from the body by either stunning or killing them. Thus, this action is twofold; a direct action on the parasites by these harmala alkaloids (particularly harmine in ayahuasca) works to kill the parasites and the parasites are expelled through the increased intestinal motility that is caused by these alkaloids. It is worth noting that the overall cognitive positivity or negativity of an ayahuasca trip in psychologically balanced individuals depends greatly on how nauseating or purgative the chosen method of preparation is. For example, paranoia, anxiety, delirium and a difficulty stringing thoughts together often immediately manifest themselves during uncomfortable states of nausea for the inexperienced, but remain absent when purge-free methods of preparation are used.
  • Changes in felt bodily form
  • Muscle relaxation or Muscle tension
  • Physical autonomy
  • Motor control loss
  • Muscle contractions
  • Muscle spasms
  • Appetite suppression
  • Stomach cramps
  • Dehydration
  • Diarrhea
  • Pupil dilation

Sensory Effects

Subjective Effects

Disclaimer: The effects listed below are cited from the Subjective Effect Index (SEI), which relies on assorted anecdotal reports and the personal experiences of PsychonautWiki contributors. As a result, they should be taken with a healthy amount of skepticism. It is worth noting that these effects will not necessarily occur in a consistent or reliable manner, although higher doses (common+) are more likely to induce the full spectrum of reported effects. Likewise, adverse effects become much more likely on higher doses and may include serious injury or death.

Visual Effects




The visual geometry that is present throughout this trip can be described as more similar in appearance to that of psilocybin mushrooms than LSD or mescaline. It can be comprehensively described through its variations as intricate in complexity, abstract in form, organic in feel, structured in organization, multicoloured in scheme, glossy in shading, equal in sharp and blurred edges, large in size, fast in speed, smooth in motion, equal in rounded and angular corners, non-immersive in-depth and progressive in intensity. At higher doses, it is significantly more likely to result in states of level 8B visual geometry over level 8A.

Hallucinatory states

Ayahuasca and other forms of DMT produce a full range of high-level hallucinatory states in a fashion that is more consistent and reproducible than that of any other commonly used psychedelic. These effects include:

Legal Status

Internationally, DMT is a Schedule I drug under the Convention on Psychotropic Substances. The Commentary on the Convention on Psychotropic Substances notes, however, that the plants containing it are not subject to international control:

  • Brazil: The religious (but not therapeutic or recreational) use of ayahuasca is legal.
  • Peru: The traditional use of ayahuasca for therapeutic purposes ("vegetalismo") is legal.
  • United States:
    • Louisiana: Except for ornamental purposes, growing, selling or possessing of these ayahuasca plants are prohibited by Louisiana State Act 159:
  • Sources


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    14. Some folk uses of Peganum harmala in India and Pakistan |
    15. Ott J. Ayahuasca Analogues: Pangaen Entheogens. Natural Products Co.. 1994. 34
    16. Antidepressant effects of a single dose of ayahuasca in patients with recurrent depression: a preliminary report -
    17. Safety and side effects of ayahuasca in humans--an overview focusing on developmental toxicology. --
    18. Health status of ayahuasca users. -
    19. Pic-Taylor et al (2015). Behavioral and neurotoxic effects of ayahuasca infusion (Banisteriopsis caapi and Psychotria Viridis) in female Wistar rat. Behav Processes ( / NCBI) |
    20. DMT – UN report, MAPS, 2001-03-31, archived from the original on January 21, 2012, retrieved 2012-01-14
    21. The Internationalization of Ayahuasca, page 327

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    3. PubChem National Center for Bio Informatics
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