As the ship approached NIO-5, the engine was turned off, allowing the ship’s inertia to carry it to the destination on the surface. Despite my best efforts to cultivate psychological poise in the face of this journey, I was occupied with a nervous habit of clicking my teeth together in a repeating pattern: twice on the left, once on the right, and three times altogether. I was inside a smaller vehicle that Paulo, an engineer who developed tools for deep-space extravehicular activity, had created for me. It was a large graphene-coated Exo-suit lined with nano-bots capable of modifying their material properties as needed. Paulo hoped it would keep me safe from whatever environmental barrages I might encounter within NIO-5. It may have been clunky and difficult to navigate, but I still had freedom of movement within the Exo-suit. I could even retract my arms out of the Exo-suit’s sleeves to configure the Akashik navigator strapped to my chest or scratch an itchy nose.

“T-MINUS 1 MINUTE UNTIL CONTACT.” declared the ship’s navigation system. My teeth stopped clicking, my jaw tightened, and I breathed deeply before approaching the observation bay.

I could see NIO-5’s surface undulating, pulsing … I felt it breathe along with me. This feeling caused my breathing to turn shallow and violent, and I saw NIO-5’s surface respond in kind through a dynamic display of mesmerizing textures and visuals that could only be understood first-hand. I uncomfortably reoriented my gaze from NIO-5 and focused on the details of the room to distract myself. Unfortunately, the discomfort of staring at NIO-5 was simply replaced by the disturbing sense of being observed.

“CONTACT MADE.” announced the ship’s navigation system.

My awful experience with NIO-5 was cut short when the ship’s landing gear collided with NIO-5. Protected from the myriad of potential hazards by my exo-suit, I exited the ship and unceremoniously took the first steps on the surface of NIO-5. Soon after, I began to sense the reality and consciousness-distorting effects of NIO-5. I retracted my arms into the suit and initialized my Akashik navigator, which began to gently vibrate. I needed to move with precise intention, to make intelligent use of the Akashik navigator’s limited energy supply. I tried to keep my feeble mind in check.

I began to sense the reality and consciousness-distorting effects of NIO-5


Unsure of how I found myself… here… my exosuit leaned against a pile of luminescent bio-rubble, while I pointlessly crushed a bundle of fresh parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme between my hands directly underneath my nose. The memory of what brought me here, and of why I chose to endure my mind and body being whirled within this cosmic soup of… something. Every moment of my comprehension of my trajectory was so short-lived, and immediately preceded the most severe moments of disorientation. My reality, along with my sense of Self, was repeatedly fragmented towards an all-consuming void from which everything would emerge as crystalline shards which rearranged themselves into baffling new configurations of formless geometries. And, I, I myself, am the driving force for all of this – the central point around which each exotic configuration finds its delicate stability. My presence is essential, for every circle must have its center – and I am the center that is demanded by the geometry of the cosmic abyss.

As my soul drowned in a blissful delirium, I suddenly awoke to the sight of my hand’s knuckles turned white, I gripped the bundle of fresh herbs harder and pressed it aggressively into my nose. I lowered my head and rounded my shoulders, as I breathed the fragrances as deeply as I could. Much to my relief, I was able to bring myself back on track. That’s right…Teresa… Teresa… Teresa.

I theorized that NIO-5’s insides contained quantum-tryptamines capable of disrupting your mind’s emergent existence within the single reality that we are fatally locked into and allow your Self to experience countless realities. I wondered if this was a sentient entity. I suppose the Boltzmann brain is not such an extravagant exercise in thinking, but maybe it is also an inappropriate comparison to this multi-textured, disembodied, melted-in-mind entity firmly anchored in a singular area of space without any gravitational interactions with nearby celestial bodies. Brains are relatively stable relationships among different aspects of Akashik fields, matter, and consciousness. It can interface with the human mind, but this does not mean that it is just a mind. Within this in-between, transcendent realm, using appropriate neural feedback and navigational tools, it is possible to travel through the Akashic fields to wherever, whenever, and whichever – one might manifest the impossible or merely rewrite what is possible. So, I could save Teresa, or a version of her.

I theorized that NIO-5’s insides contained quantum-tryptamines capable of disrupting your mind’s emergent existence within the single reality that we are fatally locked into and allow your Self to experience countless realities.

I remained resolute in my goal. I reinitiated the Akashik navigator, feeling a strong buzz emanate from the core of my chest towards my extremities, and began to navigate further into and out of this quasi-biological maze of probabilities.


I invited Paulo, my brilliant colleague and most trusted friend, to my laboratory. The large, cold lab was completely dark except for lights coming out of the meeting room at the far end of the space.

“Do you recognize how selfish you are being?” said Paulo. His scowling eyes were fixed on me as he continued, “Obviously not, or else we wouldn’t even be having this conversation right now. How can you tell me all of this? What was even the point – you’re going to kill yourself anyways, what good does it do to give me a heads up?”

“You haven’t got anything to say about my theories or data? Just moral judgment?” I replied.

“Oh! How am I supposed to process your theories and data when it is presented in the context of what is assuredly a suicidal endeavor?” said Paulo, “It’s been so hard to watch you these last few years, but I always reassured myself that ‘at least he hasn’t given up completely’, but when you mention this idea of yours…”

I took a deep breath. “I haven’t – “

“Has this been the point of your research this whole time?” asked Paulo.

“Not at first…I honestly just wanted a distraction. But once the possibility of being able to turn back the clock became clear to me, I couldn’t simply forget it. Every day became an effort to withhold my physical need to vomit. Not investigating this, it made me sick.” I answered. I paused for a moment, biting the nails on my right hand and lowering my gaze, before continuing, “I couldn’t even eat a solid meal for a month, and you know damn well I could mainline amphetamine and still have an appetite, so this was serious. Everything around me seemed like an echo of a world I no longer inhabited. The only real thing was the compulsive self-accusation that I was letting her die every single day, all over again, if I made the choice to not find out if I was right.”

Paulo felt his frustration fade, and his heart soften, as he replied, “She’s already dead, Caesar. Even if you find a version of ‘a Teresa’ who lost you instead, for some reason, she won’t be the real, or I mean your, Teresa. Come on man, I know it’s been tough, but this isn’t the way to heal yourself and move on.”

I felt irritated at his presumptuous attitude and replied “You have absolutely no idea what it has been like. And – ”

Paulo cut me off. “I don’t? I cooked your meals for half a year! I literally did your laundry because you couldn’t be bothered. I literally -”

Ignoring that I had been interrupted, I continued speaking. “- And besides, there is no moving on from this. Moving on isn’t a choice, it’s a blessing that you either get or don’t. I wasn’t so lucky. I died with her.”

“So, you are trying to resurrect yourself too? You think Teresa would want to be with who you’ve turned into? You aren’t the same person who she fell in love with, built a life with, and was trying to start a family with” Paulo said.

“Watch your god damn mouth!” I snapped.

“I just don’t want to lose you completely,” said Paulo as he moved his chair closer to me.

“I promise, you’ve already lost me completely. Or at least, you will if I don’t go through with this. I need to know I tried my best. Please, Paulo, I just need your help to construct the vehicle. I’ve already designed the Akashik navigator and ran some tests in my lab under similar environmental conditions, I’ve secured transportation near NIO-5, this is the only thing left to do.” I explained.

Paulo asked, “… And by ‘similar environmental conditions’…you mean – “

“Intravenous N, N-Dimethyl-Tryptamine, amongst some other things, to create highly entropic, energetic states of consciousness. I’m able to stabilize the phenomenal textures, stabilize my Self, and navigate these higher dimensions without dependence on subjective spatial or temporal cues. It’s indescribable really, the experience of intuitively understanding ‘movement’ in those realms. It is as if every step recreated your path and trajectory, which can either converge to a stable instance of reality or diverge into infinite recursions.” I replied.

“How did you avoid getting stuck in those infinities? Or having your sense of… Self de-stabilized?” asked Paulo.

“I didn’t. Last summer was the first time. Those experiences left me unable to even organize my thoughts in any abstract way for nearly a week at one point. I was just an empty receptacle of experience. But you’ve got to crack a few minds to make an Akashik navigator!” I replied before letting out a self-congratulating “Haha!”.

“So, you weren’t at a meditation retreat last summer…,” said Paulo in confusion, “So, how did you get out of it?

“It’s not all about technology – a sensory stimulus that evokes strong, visceral emotions can trigger a cascade of memories that further stimulate emotions, causing a feedback cycle strong enough to pull you back into your Self,” I explained. “Not all sensory input is processed by thalamic networks, which are utterly dysregulated in these states.”

Intravenous N, N-Dimethyl-Tryptamine, amongst some other things, to create highly entropic, energetic states of consciousness.


Ah, I went the wrong way at the wrong time – I hastily retraced my steps, before I forgot it all again. There was a clear pathway that introduced an asymmetry to the fractal gateway, which I had completely missed. Ah, there was a clear pathway that introduced an asymmetry to the fractal gateway, which I had completely missed. Ah, there was a clear – lost again. I yanked my arms out of the exo-suit sleeves, crushed the herbs into my face, remembered the garden I tended with Teresa, and came back. The timing was important to get right, but it was difficult to navigate yourself across multiple realities simultaneously. I made it through this time and suddenly returned to the moment of my Birth. Well not that birth, but rather our collective Birth. The genesis of the strong nuclear force, that birth of atomic stability. My phenomenal consciousness was preserved in the quantum swirls of quarks in this primordial era of the Universe; I tasted the experience of each quark and the infinite interaction amongst themselves, or rather, myself. Each attempt to unite with myself and evolve into a new fundamental unit merely rewarded me with the pain of intimate rejection by someone so dear – it was unspeakably grim and torturous. I only grew more desperate and resentful as I demanded what I knew I deserved. At some point, I surrendered to the infinite abyss – if I were to suffer, at least I would not impose on myself the fatigue of resisting. Just then, my awareness brought forth a brilliant flash of sound and light that established equilibrium amongst my(quark)self – the right constants and rules, such that atomic stability emerged. I was whole again. In that moment, I was projected to the outermost rims of space-time, and I uneasily breathed myself as the Universe into myself.

Suddenly, my Akashik navigator’s safety feature was set off, causing me to be aggressively out of this experience from the high-frequency buzz that penetrated deep into my core. I decided to take a leap of faith, so casting aside the possibility of exiting NIO-5, I committed whatever fuel my navigator had left to journey even deeper. Though the tight crevices and hyperbolic valleys would tempt me away from my journey with false promises of cosmic bliss and eternal love, I knew my path could only be forward. I’d take my chances at cosmic oblivion.

About The Author

Victor Pablo Acero

Victor is a co-founder of the Intercollegiate Psychedelics Network and the current Director of Internal Operations. He is currently a 5th year Bioengineering PhD Candidate at the University of Pennsylvania.  Victor is also Chair of the Graduate Advisory Board for the Penn Psychedelics Collaborative (PPC), a multi-school faculty and researcher working group at the University of Pennsylvania. Victor is the lead organizer of the PPC’s upcoming Philadelic conference on the Interdisciplinary Frontiers of Psychedelic Studies, in Philadelphia, July 13-15th, 2023.

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