Blue Lotus

The dried flowers of the Blue Lotus plant are smoked or steeped in a tea in order to give the user a sense of peaceful relaxation. Blue Lotus is noted for its calming euphoria, aphrodisiac qualities, and sedation.

Blue Lotus (Nymphaea caerulea) is a sedative plant also known as Blue Water Lily, Egyptian lotus and the Sacred Lily of the Nile.

History

This plant originates from North and Central Africa, where it was found along the Nile River in Egypt1.
For thousands of years it was used by Egyptians and Mayans as part of funerary ceremonies1. Shamans would use these sacred blue flowers to reach higher levels of consciousness3. It is now cultivated as an ornamental pond plant throughout the world2.

Blue Lotus in Egyptian mythology

In Egypt it was believed that gods had provided humans with Blue Lotus as a way for the soul to leave the body and be among them 3. The sun-god Ra was born from a Blue Lotus, and in its glory flowers bloom from 8 am to noon3. They are a symbol of the origins of life, but also represent the death and resurrection of Osiris4 and thus symbolize eternal life, revival and reanimation5. Other Egyptian gods were born from Blue Lotus or were seeking to transform themselves through it1. According to Egyptian legend, a bouquet was given to Ra in an effort to soothe his suffering as he grew old6.

Ancient Greek and Roman priesthoods also included Blue Lotus in their spiritual practices7. It is believed to be the plant that Lotophagi ate in “The Odyssey1.

Nowadays, in addition to its use in perfumes8 and cosmetics9, it is still used as a mild sedative10.

Methods of Use

The flowers of the Blue Lotus can be ingested through a variety of methods.

More commonly, 1 to 3 g of dried flowers are brewed into tea10. The flower should be put in at least a small amount of wine (or other alcoholic beverages) first to extract active molecules, since the narcotic alkaloid compounds are not soluble in water 10 12. The infused wine and liquors can also be ingested.

In addition, it can be smoked, vaped from resin/e-liquid10 or used in a herbal blend13.

Medicinal Benefits

The benefits of Blue Lotus stem mainly from the sedative properties of the plant. It is used as a sleep aid and as an anxiety reliever10. Blue Lotus contains nuciferine along with aporphine14, that activate serotonin and dopamine receptors15 17.

Blue Lotus could have antioxidant properties18. Some people use it as an aphrodisiac and to help with erectile dysfunction. There are also reports of its use as a treatment for gastrointestinal problems. Diarrhea and dyspepsia, among other things, have reportedly been helped by ingesting Blue Lotus, although research is scarce in this particular area18.

Effects

The effects of Blue Lotus seem to differ between different people, and to depend on how it is used, but its principal effects (mildly sedative, relaxing and calming19) is probably what made this plant popular among the Egyptians.

A calm sense of euphoria overtakes many users of the plant19, The sedation is present, but the tingling, body energy sensation of stimulants fills them as well.

After finishing the brew I went downstairs and played some video games for like 20 minutes when I noticed my vision started to become distorted & my mind was drifting. Taking this as a sign that something was about to happen, I went upstairs and hid out in my bedroom, where I proceeded to smoke a whole bowl of plant material– I wanted this to be good. It was. I was reminded vaguely of both marijuana and opium by the feeling that slowly crept over me, except much less overwhelming. I certainly didn’t want to move, but some things seemed a little different to me.

Source: Goloheb’s experience report on Erowid

Most of the reports and information I have read on Blue Lotus refers to making a tea or steeping the substance in wine. I decided to try the tea option. I put approximately 9 grams in a perculator and let it boil for about 15 minutes. I then removed the boiled plant material and set it aside. I drank the tea over the course of about a half an hour, surfing the internet in the meantime. After about 15-20 minutes, I began to feel a distinctive buzz. I could not really relate it to anything I have tried…maybe the closest thing would be opium. I began to feel very happy and relaxed. Sounds seemed distant and there was a slight ringing in my ears (not unpleasant). Problems seemed unimportant

Source: Skandre’s experience report on Erowid

Some also feel an aphrodisiac effect and improvement of sexual performances19. There are also report that it can induce a dream state condition along the ability to enhance dreams.

Side Effects

Reported possible side effects include muscle tremors and nausea20 and active ingredients may affect heart rate and blood pressure18. Avoid combination with other drugs (including medicines) to prevent intense nausea and feelings of disorientation.

Legality

Blue Lotus is not a federally controlled substance in the United States, although not approved for human consumption by FDA10. Thus, the cultivation, sale, and purchase of Nymphaea caerulea is legal, but it cannot be sold for consumption. Incense and weaker teas are commonly found in stores, however, and must fall within certain regulations. Louisiana is the only state in the country which has passed laws specifically dealing with Nymphaea caerulea, forbidding production, manufacturing, distribution or possession of the plant21.

Latvia22, Poland23, Romania24 and Russia25 are exceptions to the international legality of Blue Lotus. In the wake of scandals involving synthetic marijuana, they have banned the plant completely.

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Sources / References

1. Emboden, W. A. (1981) ‘Transcultural use of narcotic water lilies in ancient egyptian and maya drug ritual’. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 3(1), pp. 39–83.

2. Oosthuizen, C. B., Fisher, M. and Lall, N. (2020) ‘Nymphaea caerulea’, in Underexplored Medicinal Plants from Sub-Saharan Africa, pp. 205–210.

3. Emboden, W. A. (1989) ‘The sacred journey in dynastic Egypt: Shamanistic trance in the context of the narcotic water lily and the mandrake’. Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, 21(1), pp. 61–75.

4. Emboden, W. A . (1978) ‘The Sacred Narcotic Lily of the Nile: Nymphaea caerulea’. Economic Botany, 32(4), pp. 395–407.

5. Kandeler, R. and Ullrich, W. R. (2009) ‘Symbolism of plants: examples from European-Mediterranean culture presented with biology and history of art: JULY: Lotus’. Journal of Experimental Botany, 60(9), pp. 2461–2464.

6. Hill, J., ‘Nefertum’. [website] Available from: https://ancientegyptonline.co.uk/nefertum/ (Accessed 21 April 2020)

7. Van Khai, T. (2018) ‘The development of the architectural form of a tower derived from a traditional and philosophical symbol, realized by solutions of high-class technologies. the case of the Bitexco Financial Tower’, in E3S Web of Conferences.

8.Nymphaea caerulea, Régime des Fleurs’. [website] Available from: https://regimedesfleurs.com/products/nymphaea-caerulea (Accessed 22 April 2020)

9. Georgiev, V., Slavov, A., Vasileva, I. and Pavlov, A. (2018) ‘Plant cell culture as emerging technology for production of active cosmetic ingredients’. Engineering in Life Sciences, 18(11), pp. 779–798.

10. Poklis, J. L., Mulder, H. A., Halquist, M. S., Wolf, C. E., et al. (2017) ‘The Blue Lotus Flower (Nymphea caerulea) Resin Used in a New Type of Electronic Cigarette, the Re-Buildable Dripping Atomizer’. Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, 49(3), pp. 175–181.

11. Saunders, N.J. (2013) The Poppy: A History of Conflict, Loss, Remembrance, and Redemption, One World Publications.

12. Holzman, R. S. (2012) ‘The History of Sedation’, in Pediatric Sedation Outside of the Operating Room, Springer, pp. 3–15.

13. Cornara, L, Borghesi, B, Canali, C, Andrenacci, M, et al. (2013) ‘Smart drugs: green shuttle or real drug?International Journal of Legal Medicine, 127(6), pp. 1109–1123.

14. Peace, M. R., Smith, M. E. and Poklis, J. L. (2020) ‘The analysis of commercially available natural products recommended for use in electronic cigarettes’. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 34(11).

15. Bertol, E., Fineschi, V., Karch, S. B., Mari, F. and Riezzo, I. (2004) ‘Nymphaea cults in ancient Egypt and the New World: A lesson in empirical pharmacology’. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 97(2), pp. 84–85.

16. Farrell, M. S., McCorvy, J. D., Huang, X., Urban, D. J., et al. (2016) ‘In Vitro and In Vivo Characterization of the Alkaloid Nuciferine’. PLOS ONE, 11(3), p. e0150602.

17. Bhattacharya, S. K., Bose, R., Ghosh, P., Tripathi, V. J., et al. (1978) ‘Psychopharmacological studies on (-)-nuciferine and its Hofmann degradation product atherosperminine’. Psychopharmacology, 59(1), pp. 29–33.

18. Agnihotri, Vijai K., ElSohly, Hala N., Khan, Shabana I., Smillie, Troy J., et al. (2008) ‘Antioxidant constituents of Nymphaea caerulea flowers’. Phytochemistry, 69(10), pp. 2061–2066.

19. Lotus/Lily Reports. [website] Available from: https://www.erowid.org/experiences/subs/exp_Lotus_I_Lily.shtml (Accessed 24 April 2020)

20. Rondzisty, A., Dziekan, K. and Kowalska, A. (2015) ‘Psychoactive plants used in designer drugs as a threat to public health’. Herba Polonica, 61(2), pp. 73–86.

21. Louisiana Act No. 565; House Bill No. 173, 2010. [website] Available from: https://legiscan.com/LA/text/HB173/2010 (Accessed 23 April 2020)

22. Par Krimināllikuma spēkā stāšanās un piemērošanas kārtību. [website] Available from: http://likumi.lv/doc.php?mode=DOC&id=50539 (Accessed 23 April 2020)

23. Simonienko, K., Waszkiewicz, N. and Szulc, A. (2013) ‘Psychoactive plant species -actual list of plants prohibited in Poland’. Psychiatria polska, 47(3), pp. 499–510.

24. Ancuceanu, R. V., Dinu, M., Anghel, I., Rebegea, O. C., et al. (2010) ‘Recent prohibition of certain psychoactive “ethnobotanicals” in Romania’. Farmacia, 58, pp. 121–127.

25. Постановление Правительства Российской Федерации от 31 декабря 2009 г. № 1186. [website] Available from: http://www.narkotiki.ru/5_6751.htm (Accessed 23 April 2020)

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17 thoughts on “Blue Lotus”

  1. It seems strange that any person professing care for their body would be inhaling any thing other than air into their longs.
    Does not seem to be a particularly healthy concept, as the extremely hot air burns, destroys the hairs in the larynx, esophagus, and one encourages those using any such herbs, to either use them as a tea, or even cookies.

  2. I have smoked Blue Lotus and have found it to be a good remedy for sexual addiction to “give it a rest” rather than as an aphrodisiac (male). I have smoked it several times but it really hit the spot when that problem became apparent. However, I’d say it satiates excessive sexual desire rather than halting it like maybe Sage would.

  3. Hi guys I’m form srilanka our national flower is the blue lotus,it grows in in almost every lake and even pond in homes course the flower looks so beautiful, so to my question, since I’ve got lots of them around how do I prepare the flower for consumption or if I am to smoke it? Do I dry it so smoke it? Any information would be great thanks!

    1. Yes, it should be dried prior to consumption. Blue lotus should also be put into an alchoholic beverage to extract active molecules.

  4. Hey alex it is me yoshi again I need your help and input on something. I am thinking on buying powder lotus extract overseas and shipping it to me . I live in the usa would there be a problem shipping that? Cause I dont think blue lotus is illegal please help me out thank you peace and love Ill be waiting for your repley

  5. Hi there alex I got a couple of questions maybe you can help me out.

    1) how long is the effect of blue lotus when taken in tincture form?
    2) Is pink lotus worth making a tincture out of , and is it as good as blue lotus?
    3) And do you know any way to make lotus brownies useing alcohol based tincture?
    Hopefully I hear from you soon I got many questions my friend peace and love

    1. 1. From experience it should be longer, although I never taken any in tincture form
      2. Pink lotus has about the same relaxing effects, blue lotus seems more popular as an herbal blend.
      3. Make the brownies and add less cooking oil/butter and more tinctures depending of your taste.

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