Scorpion Smoking & Other Homegrown Hallucinogens You've Probably Never Even Heard Of

Datura, The Black Scorpion
Datura, The Black ScorpionWallpaper Flare, Wallpaper Access

Disclaimer: This article is for educational purposes only. Homegrown in no way condones the consumption, sale, or abuse of narcotics and banned substances and encourages readers to be cautious if choosing to experiment with any substances whatsoever.

Humans have had a long history with mind altering substances. Before settled civilizations, hunters and gatherers roamed the earth foraging the forests and fields for plant foods. Consequently, hallucinogenic plants were discovered and soon became a part of ancient cultures, and were used by shamans in religious ceremonies. Some even believe that these psychoactive substances were responsible for the evolution of human consciousness. Today we know much more about entheogens and we're also coming to terms with using MDMA and Psilocybin in the treatment of some forms of PTSD and depression.

But as with any psychoactive substance, abuse is just around the corner. And while the hippie movement popularized the use of psychedelic drugs, there are still some bizarre, homegrown ways of altering the consciousness that are too strange to believe. Here are some of them.

The Indian Black Scorpion
The Indian Black ScorpionWallpaper Safari


Smoking scorpions arose as an alternative for people coping with opium addictions. The method includes drying a dead scorpion in sunlight, burning it on coal and inhaling the smoke, especially from the tail which holds the venom. Some people mix the burnt tail with hashish and tobacco to smoke it in a cigarette as well. The high lasts for almost 10 hours, where the first six hours are noticeably painful. As the body adjusts to the high, the feeling eases into enjoyment, causing hallucinations and memory loss.

House Lizard
House Lizard123RF

Lizard Tail

Multiple cases of smoking the lizard tail have been noted in India. One of them is of a 32-year-old prisoner with a history of cannabis addiction who reported hitting lizards to death followed by resection of their tails. He would then dry it under the sun and burn the dried tail to a charred residue, filling it in beedis and smoking it. He would experience an “instant high” and a sense of relaxation equally pleasurable to cannabis. He claimed being introduced to this practice by other prison inmates who were already abusing the tail powder of the wall lizard.

The Indian Cobra Snake
The Indian Cobra SnakePexels

Snake Venom

As strange as it may sound, the practice of snake venom addiction is relatively common in the Indian subcontinent. The addicts usually get access to the venom through snake charmers or tribesmen. Different types of dens are made where the addicts are allowed to sit on chairs in order to get bitten by snakes; antagonizing them by hitting the unsuspecting creature on the head.  Initially, the bites are made in the index finger or little toe, followed by the lip, tongue and ear lobes. There are also cases of addicts injecting chemicals into the snake to alter the venom furthermore. They usually report a feeling of pricking, which lasts for a duration of 10-40 seconds, followed by a sense of euphoria, muscular weakness, and sedation.

Sarpa salpa
Sarpa salpaAdriatic Nature


Evil hallucinations, both sound-related and visual, describe the what's known as ichthyoallyeinotoxism, an uncommon effect following the ingestion of certain fish species like Sarpa salpa also known as "the fish that makes dreams" in Arabic. These poisonings trigger nervous system disturbances and cause impacts similar to those experienced while consuming LSD. These hallucinations, portrayed as alarming, have been accounted to have happened minutes after the fish was ingested and had an aggregate length of 36 hours.

Datura flower
Datura flowerAdobe Stock


Datura is known for its psychoactive and anticholinergic properties. All species of datura are highly poisonous but are often abused as mind-altering substances. Psychoactive alkaloids, scopolamine, and atropine in the plant are known to cause stark and dream-like hallucinations. A 36-year-old male, from northern rural India, was reported to have consumed Datura seeds for a year, where he experienced euphoria, excitement, and increased energy that would last for three to four hours. Once his intake had increased to 50–70 seeds, he would also experience pleasant visual distortions.