Johannis Baptistae Von Helmont
From von Helmont's Ausgang der Artznen-Kunst
At the beginning of the 17th century, von Helmont, the
Belgian alchemist, while experimenting with the root of A---, touched it to the
tip of his tongue, without swallowing any of the substance. He himself describes
the result in the following manner:
"Immediately my head seemed tied tightly with a string, and soon after there happened to me a singular circumstance such as I had never before experienced. I observed with astonishment that I no longer felt and thought with the head, but with the region of the stomach, as if consciousness had now taken up its seat in the stomach. Terrified by this unusual phenomenon, I asked myself and inquired into myself carefully; but I only became the more convinced that my power of perception was become greater and more comprehensive. This intellectual clearness was associated with great pleasure. I did not sleep, nor did I dream; I was perfectly sober; and my health was perfect. I had occasionally had ecstasies, but these had nothing in common with this condition of the stomach, in which it thought and felt, and almost excluded all cooperation of the head. In the meantime my friends were troubled with the fear that I might go mad. But my faith to God and my submission to His will, soon dissipated this fear. This state continued for two hours, after which I had some dizziness. I afterwards frequently tasted of the A---, but I never again could reproduce these same sensations."