What are Delta-8 THC and 5-MeO-DMT and what’s all the hype about? Here to help us understand is the cannabis whisper himself, Max Montrose of Trichome Institute.
Learn more at https://trichomeinstitute.com
[00:43] An inside look at Trichome Institute, the leading cannabis education company
[2:06] Delta-8 THC and how it differs from its better-known cousin delta-9 THC
[3:45] Why delta-8 is surging in popularity
[13:36] Where Max sees delta-8 THC heading over the next 3-5 years
[16:44] Max’s partnership with Abstrax, an industry leader in the study and production of cannabis and botanically-derived terpenes
[23:39] 5-MeO-DMT, a psychedelic found in a variety of plant species and the glands of the Sonoran Desert toad
[27:39] Max’s work studying the Sonoran Desert toad and their unique venom glands
[41:12] How Max’s experiences with 5-MeO-DMT and ayahuasca have changed his philosophies and way of life
Mathew Kind: Hi. I'm Matthew Kind. Every Monday I look for a fresh new episode where I'll take you behind the scenes and interview the insiders that are shaping the rapidly-evolving cannabis industry. Learn more at cannainsider.com, that's C-A-N-N-A-insider dot com. Now here's your program.
Max Montrose, the cannabis whisperer is going to help us understand what all the rage is with delta-8 THC and other important cannabis topics today. Max, welcome back to CannaInsider.
Max Montrose: Thanks so much, Matt. I love being on your show.
Matthew: Give us a sense of geography. Where are you in the world right now?
Max: I am in Erie, Colorado.
Matthew: Okay. Max, your company is Trichome Institute. For new listeners, can you just tell us what Trichome does?
Max: Yes. We are a cannabis education company that is different from the rest of them in the ways that we teach really interesting high-level, niche and fascinating cannabis topics, such as cooking with cannabis, the cannabis sommelier program, interpening. We also provide standard courses for the industry like cannabis consultant training, where we really just break down cannabis at a high level, how and why the plants are Indica, Sativa, and other really interesting things. For today's listeners, we actually have 10% off for anybody who's interested in our online courses or our physical goods, and that would be DELTA8.
Matthew: What's your URL?
Max: trichomeinstitute.com. Trichome Institute is on Instagram, in Facebook, trichome.institute. For people who are more into psychedelics you can also check me out max.montrose.
Matthew: The coupon code one more time, it's all letters or letters and number?
Max: It's Delta and then the number eight together, all capital.
Matthew: Okay, cool. Well, Max, we want to talk about delta-8 because we get so many questions about it, delta-8-THC. Three buckets of people listening they'll be like, "Oh, I've heard of it. I'm curious about it, but I don't really know what it is," others that say, "Hey, I've heard it and I know a little bit of what it is," and then others that have tried it, but they still don't know what to think about it. Let's just imagine we're on an elevator going up to the top of the Empire State Building, and you got a short pitch to deliver about what delta-8 is and why it's important, what would you say?
Max: Well, it's important to just know that what you're talking about is THC. Delta-8 is THC, but it's a form of THC. The form of THC that it is, it's not as sharp from an effect perspective, and so most people anecdotally claim that when they experience it, they feel high or they feel medicated, but without the eebily jeebilies, without the freak-out. There's no paranoia associated to it. They claim that it's a little softer or an easier type of high to experience.
Matthew: It's THC minus paranoia in your opinion. It's like nerfing THC to make it so you're not getting the harder edges that some people find uncomfortable?
Max: Yes. You could say that. There's a lot more to say about delta-8, but I'm on an elevator pitch. [laughs]
Matthew: You're on an elevator pitch. We'll go into a little bit more about it. Why do you think delta-8-THC is surging in popularity right now?
Max: I got to be honest, if I put all my money down on which cannabinoid was going to be the next hotshot in the marketplace, I would put all my money down on CBG and I would have lost because it was delta-8-THC.
I thought it was going to be CBG.
Matthew: I thought it was going to be CBN, so we're both--
Max: Interesting. There's reasons for this. What these reasons are, this is just really interesting stuff, we're talking about cannabinoids that are not only psychoactive like CBD, but unlike CBD, these other minor cannabinoids are also slightly intoxicating, whereas their big brother, THC, is most definitely intoxicating. I think there's a huge difference in the words people choose to use.
A whole lot of people in the hemp and CBD industry will tell you that their products are non-psychoactive. CBD is psychoactive, so is CBG, so is delta-8-THC, but CBG and delta-8-THC actually give you a noticeable effect that is calming and relaxing. When you take high levels of CBG it feels like you've done yoga for two hours and then meditated for an hour after that. Your amount of peace in physical calm and mental clarity is extraordinary, it's easy to take on and it feels great.
Matthew: That's interesting. It's a lot more approachable for the mass audience is what it is.
Max: Well, you've got two different audiences. You have the entire audience that is still restricted from a THC market that just found a backdoor called delta-8-THC out of hemp, which we can get into. The other market you have is all of the people who live in geographies where they have access to THC industries, but THC is too much for them. That would be my family. My sister and my dad, they can't handle the levels of THC in typical flower sold in most dispensaries. It's just too much. These are things that are really approachable for that whole other crowd, which is a massive amount of people.
Matthew: How many milligrams does it take you to really experience cannabis? What's a noticeable milligram amount where you're like, "I'm noticing this"?
Max: Well, when you're talking about milligrams, you're talking about edibles. You know that edibles metabolize in your liver because cannabinoids aren't water-soluble and you're made out of water. They have to transfer in your liver into something that is water-soluble, which does change the molecular structure. Why cannabis edibles are so intense or marijuana edibles with THC are so intense is because delta-8-THC turns into 11-hydroxy-delta-8-THC, which is more potent and a different form, again, of THC, a different version of THC.
What's really interesting is when you eat delta-8-THC, it actually transfers into 11-hydroxy-delta-8-THC. That's a really interesting experience because for many people, the edible experience is too much. It's too crazy. They think they're not breathing, that time has slowed down. Of course, we're talking about either people who have lower tolerances or people who take really high doses, but regardless, THC edibles can cook you in a different way than smoking flower, and everyone knows that. To try an edible but with that sharp edge taken off of it, is just really relaxing.
It's the kind of stone you get from that really heady, I'm going to use the word "Indica flower". Trichome uses the term "broadleaf". The couch-lock that you get where you're just so damn relaxed you literally cannot move is what I get from the delta-8 edible experience.
Matthew: Very interesting. Wow. It's starting to come into focus why it's becoming so popular. Are there any misconceptions about it that people aren't--?
Max: Well, we haven't even talked about really why it's becoming popular from a different angle.
Matthew: Let's talk about the other angle.
Max: Well, this angle is, this is a gray market surge that it's an enormous spike that is going to be shaved down really fast, for a lot of really good reasons. Delta-8 is not the rage or the surge in marijuana dispensaries. It is all the rage and all the surge in all the sub-operations that sell cannabis that wouldn't typically conform to the regulated industry. It's like, "Well, where are people getting this cannabis from?" "Well, the hemp industry."
That's the whole cannabis industry that's not policed by the Marijuana Enforcement Division. They don't use metrics. They don't have plant counts. They have unlicensed laboratories everywhere, God knows how many of them and where they're at, and what they're using to do extraction methods from. You're really talking about the Wild West of cannabis when you're talking about the hemp industry, which is a multi-billion dollar cannabis industry separate from Marijuana.
Now, that CBD has become a multi-billion dollar industry in and of itself, you have a ton of CBD. Now CBD is cheap. Now people have had enough time to learn about it, people have explored it, now people are ready for the next big thing. What would happen if we turned this CBD into delta-8-THC because the federal legislation from the hemp bill that separates hemp from marijuana from a THC's perspective, does specify that the difference is specifically delta-9-THC. That's the key, is all of these hemp people are saying, "Well, the law specifically says you can't have delta-9 but the law doesn't say you can't have delta-8."
Now, you have Texas, which doesn't have marijuana dispensaries but they have CBD dispensaries and hemp dispensaries, and now they're selling a THC product because they can because technically nowhere does it say that they can't. That is why you're seeing the surge, is you are seeing the world of people who wished that they could go to a store and buy THC doing it right now in places that don't technically legally, have THC.
Really, what's happening here is the federal government shot themselves in the foot by being hyper-specific because they do that. The problem is, you're trying to be hyper-specific about the number one drug on the planet that you cannot put in a box because it is the most-- Nothing in the world works like cannabis in as many different ways as it does. Had the federal government did what I think they intended to do, which was to say, any and all tetrahydrocannabinols, meaning THC (plural), any THC, delta-7, delta-8, delta-9, both versions of delta-10, 11 hydroxy, it doesn't matter if it's THC, if it is the intoxicating cannabinoid THC, there's a regulated market for that.
There's tens of thousands of people who have worked like you have no idea, to create a functioning and regulated cannabis marijuana THC market, where adults can go today, show their driver's license, buy something, go home and get high. That's where delta-8 can be sold legally and will be sold legally, and that's fine, but this is the hemp industry trying to skirt the law with this black box thing. You are starting to see governments, left and right, shutting this down and beginning to regulate it.
Matthew: Where do you think this all lands, let's say five years from now? It seems like the people want cannabis and hemp products so badly, they're always innovating and doing crazy things and looking for loopholes, just like this. It reminds me of how, when you lay a brick, there's this mortar that goes between the bricks. The bricks are all these regulations and then there's people that still had demand that wasn't being met. This mortar is being put between the bricks, delta-8 because there's a need not being filled. A strange metaphor there, Max, but let's roll with it.
Where do you think this lands, three, five years from now? Will we still be talking about delta-8 much? Or is it going to be eclipsed by some emerging cannabinoids?
Max: Yes, we will be still talking about delta-8. What's really interesting is, going back to those hemp dispensaries in Texas, they're selling cannabis flower in jars the way that you would walk into a dispenser in Colorado and purchase marijuana by the eighth or the ounce. That flower is really interesting stuff because it's rich in cannabinoids. Some of it is high in CBG, as high as 18% CBG. What an interesting product, and there's a market that's interested in smoking it.
The same goes for CBN like you said, Matt. Delta-8, even just terpenes on their own, what you have is you're going to have, potentially, an entire market of lesser cannabinoids in higher doses, and it's because they are more manageable, they don't mess people up as much, they're new, they're really interesting to learn about and to explore and experience, and they can be legally derived from hemp naturally, unlike delta-8-THC is right now.
Delta-8-THC is naturally produced by the cannabis plant but you have to remember these cannabis plants are not producing THC, to begin with or at least less than 0.3%. It's the difference of really manipulating chemically, one product to another. Yes, I think in five years you will definitely still see delta-8-THC but it will probably be only regulated in marijuana dispensaries, whereas you might see other lesser cannabinoids in higher values in hemp dispensaries.
Matthew: We probably have something in months or maybe single-digit months that this is going to survive like it is, in its current form before it mutates into more regulation, it sounds like?
Matthew: I know you're doing some work with a lab called Abstrax. Can you talk about that?
Max: Sure. Abstrax, they built a cannabis aroma supercomputer, so they're reading over 400 different aroma chemical characters simultaneously in three-dimensional visual space. [chuckles] You can actually see what this aroma looks like and it looks pretty beautiful. Their technology is so complex that they can calculate the spectrum difference of the groupings of the aromatic chemicals that would cause stimulation or sedation.
A lot of people who know cannabis still don't really fully understand that the terpenes that work in aromatherapy, and it's the same terpenes in aromatherapy, so when everyone smells lavender it becomes calm, it is the sedation chemical effect from the terpene, linalool that is causing that on your physiology. When you smoke linalool and THC combined, THC almost accelerates that sedative property causing the Indica effect.
If you map terpenes and understand how they work, and then they're in different groupings, you can actually calculate that this flower is going to be a sedative and this one's going to be a stimulant. To have a computer that can test if cannabis is an Indica or Sativa, would be a multi-billion dollar game-changer because we're going to solve a big problem in the industry because we're going to take the guessing out of the equation. [laughs]
Of course, because these guys have heard that I teach people how to see and smell the difference between cannabis and its effect in our interpening program, that they actually flew me out to LA, they tested me on this and I got seven out of eight jars right on the head, me, explaining that this one would affect you in this way and this one would affect you in that way, and, "These effects are also going beyond stimulating and sedative. We have analyzed five effect types." I was getting seven out of eight jars correct, right on the dot with five different options that the jar could be not one or the other.
Matthew: All right. It's a lot of permutations there?
Max: Exactly. Man, what we can do together combining how we analyze cannabis and its quality and its effect type, with our cannabis sommelier program, and understanding what's happening in the Emerald Triangle with appellations [unintelligible [00:19:32] and topicity, you can certify topicity with something like Abstrax technology. Topicity is the flavor that is recognizable and of typical to any and every OG that's ever experienced Durban Poison or Jack Herer.
If you claim that you have Jack Herer, says who? Have you literally verified the flavor of that Jack and put it on a computer program that can actually map it compared to the baseline assessment that we have from Jack Herer's son, our good buddy, Dan, who gives us access to the original genetic so we know that this is original Jack? Here it is. If you are a dispensary that's going to sell Jack, is that certified Jack? It's beyond terpene fingerprinting which is something people have talked about in the industry before. It's the same idea. It's just way more advanced.
Matthew: There would be some range that's allowable within it from that standard to say, if it deviates beyond, this would no longer be considered Jack?
Max: Of course, yes. Jack, grown indoors versus outdoor and in this state versus that state isn't going to read identically, but it's going to read really close. Jack bred with Skunk #1 isn't going to make the cut.
Matthew: Wow, that's really interesting. What a nose you have. Your nose is a prodigy of some kind.
Max: It's crazy. This is what we teach people. We teach people how to do this professionally and on their own. That's what that code is for, delta-8. That's an online course. Actually, Abstrax in Trichome Institute is coming out with a product that we've now finished. We just need to release it which is the world's very first cannabis aromatic training kit. It comes with 12 different terpenes to teach you how to feel different smells in different parts of your face to gauge where different groupings of terpenes would actually dictate stimulating or sedative effect types from cannabis.
Also, they have Abstrax terpenes in there that is the smell of Jack Herer. Because Abstrax can not just analyze it, they can recreate the smell identically. It's crazy, the terpenes that these guys can make. I've never seen another terpene company come anywhere close to the sharpness and specificity of the complex aroma types of these really unique plants produce of flavors that you cannot describe. Jack Herer and Durban Poison does not smell like a single fruit, a single type of food, a plant, an animal, a fungus, or a spice. There's nothing in the world that smells like those things.
It's crazy that they can recreate it. Because they can recreate it, we, the Trichome Institute, can teach people around the world about it because we can legally ship you the smell of Jack Herer in a jar where we might not be able to ship you the cannabis. Although now, we're selling hemp flower online to teach people how to get into their cannabis and grade it, the trichomes, look at it with a microscope, and all that fun stuff.
Matthew: You could create a men's cologne, just call it Dank.
Max: The amount of times, Matt, that I've said, "If a woman smelled like this cannabis plant, I would be done." There's some perfumes out there that would really be quite interesting. That's true.
Matthew: Wow, that is interesting stuff. Keep us posted. Keep us posted on that. I know you got developments coming, but let's pivot now to 5-MeO-DMT. I want to talk about your interaction with the Sonoran Desert toad in a minute, but first, let's just introduce what 5-MeO-DMT is.
Max: DMT is awesome. In fact, I don't know if you know this, Matt, but the back of the interpening book is reviewed by Rick Strassman, who's a dear friend of mine who wrote the book and did the movie of DMT: The Spirit Molecule.
Matthew: That was a great movie. I really enjoyed that.
Max: He's the world authority on what DMT is and how it works. He's a dear friend of mine. We produce DMT. Essentially, DMT is the chemical that you dream on, your very psychedelic dreams where you can fly and you can talk to your dead relatives, but it's also very clear in your consciousness. It's just incredibly psychedelic. The DMT that you produce in your mind is N, N-dimethyltryptamine. Typically when people harvest DMT from nature, it's an N, N-DMT that they're harvesting typically from DMT-producing plants. There's tons of different plants that produce what we would call a high level of DMT. A high level of DMT from a plant would be 3% by dry weight. That'd be a lot.
Most people who know DMT, they really know N, N-DMTs specifically. When you brew ayahuasca with Banisteriopsis caapi, the vine, and chacruna, which is P. viridis, the plant that contains DMT or Mimosa hostilis, the root bark, another plant that contains the DMT, you're producing N, N-DMT. All of this is N, N-DMT. 5-MeO is really derived from the toad. When people have seen The Simpsons and they lick toads and they start tripping, that's what they're actually talking about, is the Sonoran Desert toad which is also called the Colorado River toad. Its technical name is the Bufo alvarius.
Do plants produce 5-MeO-DMT? Yes. In fact, you can buy plants that have 5-MeO-DMT in them at your local garden store probably today. If you can't, I can guarantee you can buy them on Amazon right now. Do you know what a Mimosa pudica is, Matt?
Max: [chuckles] Have you ever heard of the plants called, what are they called? sensitive plants?
Max: Man. Come on. The little plants, you touch them, and then their leaves just fall and curl the second you touch them?
Matthew: Yes. I think I know what you're talking about.
Max: Yes, you know what I'm talking about. You sell them in garden stores for kids because they're really fun. They're cool because the plants move when you interact with them. Those have 5-MeO-DMT in them. Those plants are actually conscious. In fact, they actually remember specific people. They remember time. They actually remember certain events and they go to sleep because they're so conscious that they actually have to let their consciousness take a break. If they don't, they'll die from having a lack of sleep just like humans.
DMT is consciousness. It is a portal to many different worlds. This can get deep. Even though plants have very sliverous amounts of DMT in them, it is the Bufo alvarius toad that has a large amount of 5-MeO to offer.
Matthew: Tell us about your interaction with this toad.
Matthew: Don't be shy about the details.
Max: [laughs] There's a couple of important things to be said. First of all, these toads are being decimated from people who have learned that they contain "drugs". These are people who don't take the time to learn how to go about this properly. They take these toads out of the environment and they kill them to harvest their medicine. These are rare creatures to begin with. Their habitat is being decimated. The place that they live on planet Earth which is southern Arizona and northern Mexico, that's one of the most brutal places on earth. That's a harsh environment just to survive in. These animals can't live without water. I don't know if you've heard about Arizona recently, but they've already run out of water.
These are very, very special creatures. I don't want to be responsible for educating people that these are things that you can go out, and acquire and that you should. I don't really think people should. There is synthetic 5-MeO-DMT. Where you get that is probably the dark web. I think it should also be said that all of this is federally illegal. This is a schedule 1 drug. It's also federally illegal to harvest the toads. It's also illegal to possess them. It's illegal to go catch them. It should be, too.
How do I find myself interacting with these toads in the desert? Well, people who follow my social media, max.montrose, know that it's not just full of psychedelic plants. I literally run around the world in jungles and deserts catching venomous snakes barehanded and demonstrating a variety of different amphibians, arachnids, insects, bats. This is something I've just been doing since I was a young boy.
Arizona is one of my hotspots to go catch snakes and arachnids. On occasion, when you're in Arizona, hunting for tarantulas, scorpions, and rattlesnakes, and you come to bodies of water and you're at night, during the monsoon season, you can definitely see these toads. They're hard not to see because the adults are the size of small kittens. They are big toads. I have interacted with them. I've played with them. I've spent some time with them.
Matthew: Do they like to be held?
Max: No, not at all.
Matthew: You are spooning toads?
Max: I can tell you that trying to hold them is really difficult because they are unbelievably strong. Frog legs are quite muscular and these toads are the size of small kittens and they're slimier than fish and a wet bar soap combined. The mucus that comes off of them is just pure lubrication. These things can kick and they're trying to pull themselves and kick out of your hands. It is not easy to hold them, but I can describe to you how the medicine is harvested from them.
Matthew: Yes, please.
Max: They have really large venom glands that sit right behind their ear, which sits right behind their eyeballs on either side of their cheeks. They also have these venom glands on their forearms and forelegs. The idea of this psychedelic venom is if you were a fox or a javelina or some type of desert predatory creature that would come up and essentially bite the toad, the teeth would pop these glands. These glands are meant to be popped.
What would happen is you would have a hallucinogenic venom surge in your mouth. We suspect that that would send Mr. Fox to the other side of the multi-verse and have him converge with some government of alien beings. While he is lost in outer space, the toad would be hopping away.
Matthew: What a defense?
Max: [laughs] What a defense? That's the idea or the reason why we believe these toads have the defense mechanism, that is a poison, but it is a hallucinogenic experience that we feel that they actually give to other animals if they were to be bitten in a mouth.
What you do is if you can handle these toads, you put their venom glands in your fingers. This is very similar to popping a zit, but the zit that they have to pop is almost as hard as a rock. If you squeeze it hard enough, typically it will shoot and pop and squirt like a zit. This is disgusting, but you squirt it onto a glass dish or a pan. That hallucinogenic venom oxidizes in the air quite quickly.
The idea is you catch a handful of toads and put them in one bucket. As you're done going through popping all of their glands, place them in another bucket. This doesn't really hurt them. After you handle them with your bare hands because it's an amphibian, you definitely want to put cool and filtered water on their bodies to let them rehydrate and you let them go.
Once their medicine has oxidized, you basically can turn this Pyrex dish over and you can scrape it up and you have crystalline hallucinogenic frog or toad venom, which has a very high amount of 5-MeO-DMT in it, which is quite stable too. You can keep it for years.
Matthew: Wow, that's crazy. I wonder if anybody skipped ahead in this podcast and just came up to that point about the toad and the mucus and the popping of the glands, they're like, "What [unintelligible [00:34:57]?" That's crazy. The experience of this Sonoran Desert toad, 5-MeO-DMT, is it exactly the same as the synthetically made or N, N-DMT or anything you're talking about?
Max: Let me put it to you this way. I'm not sure about the synthetic stuff. I'll just say that because I haven't tried it. I have tried both N, N and 5-MeO. I've done a ton of ayahuasca. It's not a secret. People know I try the stuff and I have for a majority of my life. This is part of who I am. I actually have quite a bit of experience. I can tell you the differences.
I think the most important thing people should know about the experience is it does not have to be the way that you constantly see it done on shows like Vice because the way that the toad is typically done is in a macro dose. Typically people are doing upwards of 50 to 100 milligrams, maybe 200 milligrams, 0.2 of a gram, that you are basically sucking in through a bong. You can't hit it with a flame, it has to be vaporized. Which is typically why you see people smoking them out of funny pipes or "meth pipes". It's just because that delivery mechanism works really well for the type of product that it is.
Typically what you see in Vice or Hamilton's Pharmacopeia, or all these things is people doing these incredible macro doses to achieve an ego death. Just imagine that you're a refrigerator, and your refrigerator is plugged into the house. Your mainframe is on. Even if you go to sleep, you're still cold inside because your motor isn't running right now, because you're in sleep mode, but you're still plugged in because your motor is going to come back on. They're taking so much of a dose that they're actually ripping the cord out of the wall. They're unplugging the refrigerator. It can't turn itself back on.
This does cause an ego death because you literally go back to square one. You actually go to the place where you came from before you were here. You visit where death is although it's not death, it's just the other place that this isn't. You can learn a thousand years' worth of wisdom in history and come back from this experience literally never touching your cocaine habit ever again.
I've actually done ayahuasca with someone who knocked out 20-year-old alcohol and cocaine addiction with this toad experience.
Max: Yes. They actually combine it with the frog. The frog is different from the toad. I'm not necessarily going to get into that, but if you do, the frog is a prerequisite, it can make the toad way stronger. They are two very different things from very different parts of the world.
Matthew: Just tell us the name of the frog so we know what you're talking about.
Max: Oh, it's Kambo. Instead of Bufo, it's the Kambo, which is also a waxy monkey tree frog. [chuckles] This is where you burn holes in your muscles, in your body and you take that frog slime that you mix with your saliva and you stick it in your burn wounds and puke your brains out. It's a cleanse. We typically do this before we do ayahuasca or peyote or stuff like that. If you do the frog and really clean yourself out physically and psychologically and spiritually at a huge level, prior to doing some really deep psychedelic, like the toad, it's an entirely different launchpad kind of an experience.
This is all wisdom from the jungle. People have been doing this for thousands of years. This is not a new thing. It's just this is not common for Westerners.
Matthew: Ayahuasca trip, not everybody, but most people vomit before that. That's part of the process of cleansing out or just a reaction?
Max: When you drink ayahuasca, it's like a thick syrup. To me, it tastes like sour chocolate milk that's at least edible. It's not so sour that you cannot get it down, but your body does reject it. It's like, "Okay, what did you just put in me?" [laughs] Especially on your second, third, or fourth cup in the evening, drinking vines and jungle plants that have been brewed together in a cup of sour chocolate sludge, you can definitely throw that up. [chuckles]
Actually, it's one of my favorite parts of the experience because when you need to vomit, you're as physically pent up as you are emotionally and psychologically pent up. You and your being as a whole just needs to explode. The catalytic event of getting well, having the opportunity to physically really clean out and clean out deep and hard while having such a psychedelic experience simultaneously is riveting. It's really fantastic.
Matthew: What are your key takeaways from ayahuasca and 5-MeO-DMT about the nature of the reality we live in now? Seeing as you're an explorer, an adventurer in these other realms, how do you integrate these experiences into what your philosophy is about why we're here and what's going on?
Max: This stuff is hard to talk about because you have two different sides of the aisle. You have one side of the aisle that totally gets it. Those are people who will study ancient religions like Judaism and Buddhism and the structures of freemasonry and symbolism, sacred geometry, but who study it seriously in that really, really deep levels. The other side of people are people who have never experienced the stuff. They don't value how and why ancient religions are really pathways and keys to the whole of it all in life that have been structured and given to us from ancient ones that may or may not be a part of our species necessarily.
You have a scientific community that says, "Well, you're on a hallucinogenic substance, aren't you? Isn't everything that you're experiencing in your mind fake because you're hallucinating?" It can be a hard conversation to have because for the people who haven't tried these truly sacred medicines-- Actually, the last time I did ayahuasca, which wasn't that long ago, we had one of those guys in the group trying ayahuasca for his first time. When he came out of it the next morning when we were sharing our experiences, he said that he was one of those analytical scientific guys that poo-pooed on anyone and everyone who ever talked about magic being real. There's just no science for it.
When you hang out with divinity and a shaman god allows you to see the perspective of the matrix that you're truly in and all of your spirit guides who are rooting for you in the mission that you're on in this time period, it's really hard not to believe in magic. It's really hard not to know that there is a big purpose for being here and that time is so, so special and it is not to be wasted. You are a part of god because how could you not be? Creation is real. Something is being created and here you are, and you're a part of it, and you're co-creating it with the consciousness that you have and the free will that's a part of it in its equation.
We need you to be conscious in creating goodness because reality is constantly a battle between good and evil. Once you see this perspective and this war that's happening, you have a responsibility to participate as a warrior in fighting for what is good even if it doesn't make sense in society, like these things being against the law. It is my religion. I can go to synagogue and talk about the ancient ones who had these experiences and figured all this stuff out for themselves thousands of years ago or I can do it for myself, too.
Matthew: There's so much interesting stuff going on here. I hope listeners enjoy it as much as I have. I'm going to start going on your Instagram. You need a YouTube channel, call it To The Max or Maximus or something, where you're educating and also doing this interesting stuff, philosophy, integrating these things. It's just fascinating stuff. There are so many different ways we can get off the topics of cannabis here, but since this is the main theme of the show, we'll wrap it up now with some personal development questions for you, Max. You seem like such a Colorado guy to me.
Max: Oh, yes. My Subaru is so dirty, my pants are dirty, my [unintelligible [00:45:37] are dirty, my dogs are dirty. We go hiking, we search for mushrooms, we roll in the dirt, we grow weed. We're Colorado. [laughs]
Matthew: This is going to be a tough question for you then. If you couldn't live in Colorado, Utah, Arizona, where would you live?
Matthew: Sonoma. Wait. Oh, you're talking about Northern California?
Matthew: Got it. We were just talking about the Sonoran Desert toad, so I got confused. You like it up there?
Max: Yes, man. The Emerald Triangle is just too far out and the city is just too much. Right in between is a slice of heaven in wine and weed country in the Redwood Forest where there's farmers' markets and California hippies. Come on. [chuckles]
Matthew: What do you like up there? Sebastopol? Petaluma? [crosstalk]
Max: Yes, Sebastopol, Sonoma. I've got to tell you, I'll be honest, I've been trying to buy a house up there for a year or maybe plus at this point. It's hard with the fires. Really, it's the fire insurance, the flood insurance with the Russian River and California taxes. It makes it hard for a young guy like me to be able to actually make it work just because of all the extra little stuff. I'm also looking at Oregon. I think there's a lot of similar places and vibes and flavors, but I don't know how I could survive anywhere in the United States other than from Colorado to anywhere more west. Anywhere more east of Colorado, I don't think I could make it. [chuckles]
Matthew: Max, can you give us just a minute or two about-- you proposed to your fiancé and just the way you did that? Not to get personal. [laughs]
Max: [unintelligible [00:47:32] personal. I woke her up. We went to Sedona. She knew that we went to Sedona for me to propose to her. We made her ring together. We picked out all the stones and the rough. Our buddy cut it and put it together. It's literally the most beautiful ring you've ever seen. We went to Sedona to go get engaged, but she wasn't allowed to know what the ceremony was.
I woke her up at five o'clock in the morning with white linens and golden crowns that we both wore. We marched into the Sedona Desert and we made a sacred geometry little altar out of the earth in our crystals and our smudging and our music with not a single person in sight. We tried some psychedelic cacti and let's just say a magical something else.[chuckles]
Psychedelics are a big part of our life, not because we're on drugs, but because they open us up, our hearts to ourselves and each other and the universe in such a substantial and emotional, and deep way. It's not like we were blasted out of our minds or anything, but we definitely ate some sacred medicines and had a really beautiful ceremony in the desert together. I asked her to marry me.
Matthew: Oh, wow. That's so much different than the typical. That's why I wanted to ask you about it.
Max: [chuckles] Man, there's nothing I do in my life that is difficult.
Matthew: Max, bringing it back to cannabis, what's one big trend you see coming in cannabis right now that the general public just doesn't all fully appreciate how big or important it's going to be?
Max: Buying cannabis based on its aroma and not its THC profile.
Max: You have to have a platform. You have to have a system and then you have to teach people. This isn't going to be an overnight thing, but when people learn that if you stop shopping for strain names and THC percentages and you start shopping for specific aromas like Pachyderm Funk, then you're going to be shopping for what you're really looking for in ways that you can't even imagine. This is a whole other conversation, but shopping for smells instead of THC percentages is definitely the future of cannabis.
Matthew: Maybe a Leafly-style app that does gives you a visual of what the aroma is, that would be helpful.
Max: What do you think Abstrax and I are building?
Matthew: [unintelligible [00:50:23]
Max: You'll be able to see the exact batch of cannabis that you're buying on the app. You'll be able to see microscopic photos of their trichomes, but instead of it being confusing from a visual and aroma perspective, it's going to be very, very, very intuitive and way more detailed, way more accurate, and way more sophisticated.
Matthew: Okay. That would be really helpful. You'll have to come back on when that goes live.
Max: Right now you can't shop for like, "Hey, where's the ooey-gooey, sweaty, icky, OG stinky Pachyderm Funk at? Where is the freshest, sweatiest, stinkiest dank? Where in Colorado is that?" That's what I want to buy. If I was going to just drive somewhere and spend money and pay taxes on cannabis for god's sakes, I would at least want the opportunity to shop for cannabis in [unintelligible [00:51:29]
Matthew: Max, tell us one more time your website and also the coupon code for listeners that want to learn more about cannabis and take one of your online classes.
Max: Yes, trichominestitute.com and trichome.institute on Facebook. If you can't spell trichome, it's okay. It's T-R-I-C-H-O-M-E.institute. If you put it in the product code, DELTA8, you can get 10% off any of our courses and our books, our tools, jewelers loops. We've got light-up magnifying jars to hold your cannabis in, jars to cure your cannabis with, microscopes, all sorts of stuff. In a couple months the new interpening book comes out, the Third Edition Interpening.
Matthew: It's such a pleasure to have you on again, Max, really appreciate it. Thanks for educating us about delta-8, THC, and also your experiences with the desert toad. That is really interesting. I'm glad that you could be so honest and candid about your experiences with DMT and ayahuasca, that's really helpful for me and for our listeners.
Max: Absolutely. Thank you so much for the opportunity to share this really special information, and thanks to the listeners for listening to such a cool channel. Thank you so much, Matt. I really appreciate it.
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Take care. Bye-bye.
[00:54:34] [END OF AUDIO]