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Invisibleveggie

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Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru
    #12565526 - 05/15/10 01:26 AM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru
May 13, 2010 - straight.com
By Katya Gubarev

I’m in a panic, stumbling into countless palms and cecropia trees. I’m not far from Espíritu de Anaconda, an ayahuasca healing centre located in an isolated part of the Peruvian rain forest. I came here three days ago, taking a half-hour, two-passenger mototaxi ride from Iquitos, the gateway to the Amazonian rain forest in northern Peru. My vision is almost completely gone, and I’ve lost all ability to judge time or distance since the effects of the ayahuasca took hold. It’s starting to rain, and the sound reminds me of popcorn in the microwave. It combines with the cacophony of insects to disorient me even more.

Hundreds of people come to Espíritu de Anaconda each year to be treated with ayahuasca (pronounced “ayuh-HWOS-cuh”), along with a simple plant-based diet and daily portions of the juices of native plants. The centre’s founder, 62-year-old Guillermo Arévalo, has been a shaman for more than 30 years. He was raised in a family of healers from the Shipibo and Aymara tribes that inhabit the Ucayali River region. He runs the centre with his wife, Sonia Chuquimbalqui, and a few apprentices. On any given night, the maloca—a large, round wooden hall where the ceremonies take place—holds one to three dozen people who hope to heal physical and mental conditions and gain spiritual insight.

I’ve also come to experience the healing process and to discover the spiritual connection to nature the plant is supposed to provide. Ever since a knee injury in university and subsequent surgery, my knee and back have been a constant problem. I’m hoping this treatment will get me back to playing sports pain-free.

The mix we drink during the ceremonies is prepared by boiling the ayahuasca vine with another plant, chacruna, to produce a powerful hallucinogen—N,N-dimethyltryptamine, more commonly known as DMT. Ayahuasca is illegal in many countries, including the U.S., Spain, and Canada, but is widely used in the Amazon region. The drink’s bitter, viscous taste and texture make you gag, and resulting effects can include vomiting and hallucinations.

Since ayahuasca was studied by legendary botanist Richard Schultes about 60 years ago, thousands of westerners have tried it in an attempt to alleviate everything from alcoholism to depression. It is also used as a tool for self-discovery and self-awareness. There may even be a reference to it in James Cameron’s blockbuster Avatar. The ayahuasca, also called by Native users “vine of souls” or “vine of spirits”, is echoed in the film’s Tree of Souls. In one of the deleted scenes on the Avatar DVD, the film’s main character participates in a ceremony that closely resembles those of the ayahuasca tradition. Although the plant’s fame has been spreading throughout the western world for a few dozen years, the indigenous people of Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, and Brazil have been using it for hundreds of years to communicate with the spiritual world and to heal.

When I arrived, I was told I would have my initial consultation with Arévalo a few hours later. I walked around the centre, sweating profusely and observing its inhabitants. The air was heavy and thick, and the 35 ° C heat slowed down my pace.

I passed a solemn group of men who barely made eye contact. A few dozen Europeans, Americans, and South Americans strolled along the narrow paths of the 15-hectare territory, lost in their thoughts and looking like the survivors of a shipwreck. Their voices were low, and their faces looked worn-out.

When the time came for my consultation, the shaman assured me that he could help me with my personal issues during the two weeks that I would be staying there. I was lucky that one of the apprentices who were staying at the centre at the time spoke both Spanish and English—he acted as a translator during my 15-minute chat with Guillermo. I told the shaman that my main goal was to be rid of pain, but that I would also like to learn more about myself in the process. He listened carefully, sometimes asking for clarification, and prescribed a plant that would be part of my daily diet.

That night, my first ceremony was uneventful. It began with the senior apprentice, Ricardo, pouring ayahuasca into a cup for each of us. After the last person had settled into her mat, the lights were turned off and the only sounds in the maloca were those made by the night insects. The chanting started half an hour later, giving the plant enough time to take effect. Both Guillermo and Ricardo were singing for each person individually, establishing a connection with the plant that was necessary for the healing. I was the only one of the 25 participants who didn’t appear to feel any of the usual effects. I didn’t vomit, have visions, or feel any different from usual. However, the second ceremony the next day sent me blindly wandering through the forest, feeling like I’d entered other dimensions and there was no return.

Many people who ingest ayahuasca, like those in the centre’s maloca, experience fearful visions and sensations of death. They scream, wail, laugh, cry, bark, and become entranced if the potion they drink is overwhelmingly strong. Under the influence of ayahuasca, it’s also common to feel connected to the universe and gain a sense of total understanding. Charles Grob, a psychiatry professor at UCLA’s school of medicine, researched these effects and believes ayahuasca may have potential as a treatment for depression and addiction.

Ayahuasca, however, is not for everyone. Its effects are unpredictable, and without proper supervision can be dangerous.

For me, every night the “mother plant”, as ayahuasca is sometimes called, brought out something new. Some nights I was calm and blissfully happy, lying quietly on my mat and smiling at beautiful colours and shapes that appeared before my eyes. Other nights I had no visions—only the physical sensation of falling or spinning, while my thoughts also spun out of control, leaving me sleep-deprived and utterly exhausted in the morning. I came to understand why people at the centre looked so haunted—the constant inner battles and revelations were draining.

By the end of my second week, I felt that my mind had been cleansed, but my body wasn’t feeling any better. I still had the knee tension and back pain I had arrived with. On my final day, I told the shaman of my disappointment. He smiled at me warmly and told me to be patient and have faith.

The visitors I befriended all had different results—some felt better, and others were instructed to continue their program, either at the centre or by maintaining the plant diet at home. For many of us, there were no magical results. But through two weeks, 10 ceremonies, 14 plain oatmeal breakfasts, and one of the scariest nights of my life, I did get a glimpse of the profound world the “vine of spirits” can open.

Access: Ayahuasca tourism is a thriving business, but many “shamans” lack the necessary skills and experience. Research the facilities carefully and get recommendations from those who have already been there. Talk to your doctor first. Espíritu de Anaconda is located 14 kilometres from Iquitos, Peru. Stays are flexible, and cost US$50 per day, including Iquitos airport pickup, food, accommodation, plant supplements, and ceremonies, based on four ceremonies per week, or US$70 per day based on six ceremonies.


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OfflineAscendance
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: veggie]
    #12566104 - 05/15/10 06:02 AM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Ayahuasca will heal the world one enlightenment at a time :thumbup:


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Offlineredeyesmj
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: Ascendance]
    #12566372 - 05/15/10 08:22 AM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Quote:

Ascendance said:
Ayahuasca will heal the world one enlightenment at a time :thumbup:




--------------------
Where am I at?


[/url]
In a free society, the presumption must be that people can smoke, snort, eat or inject whatever they wish, so long as they do not harm others. The burden of proof should rest on those who would ban marijuana, not those who want it legal. That burden has never been met.


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OfflineIamheasyouarehe
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: redeyesmj]
    #12566424 - 05/15/10 08:51 AM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Quote:

redeyesmj said:
Quote:

Ascendance said:
Ayahuasca will heal the world one enlightenment at a time :thumbup:







--------------------
¡Dolphin Power!



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OfflineShroomDoom
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: Iamheasyouarehe]
    #12566517 - 05/15/10 09:19 AM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Aya tourism is no bueno.
business and spiritual forces do not mix.
these are brujos, not healers.


--------------------


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InvisibleMOTH
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12566547 - 05/15/10 09:31 AM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Quote:

ShroomDoom said:
Aya tourism is no bueno.
business and spiritual forces do not mix.
these are brujos, not healers.




Maybe that's why the writer of the article said that the people at the retreat look "haunted."


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Invisibleayahuasquero
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Registered: 09/21/08
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12568498 - 05/15/10 05:40 PM (9 years, 8 days ago)

Well said. Guillermo is a brujo, and everyone in Iquitos knows it. He is responsible for killing a man during a ceremony in Europe, and raping several Western women during a ceremony at his center awhile back. Anyone can have some ayahuasa and call themselves a healer. It's the spirits who choose the healer to do the work that they do.

My advice to anyone is to learn all you can before you go pouring out your pockets to fake healers/brujos, or you'll be exploited just like countless others who come to Peru looking for answers in their lives.

I've searched Peru for a long time, and only a handfull of real healers exist in this world. Good luck searching!


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OfflineWolb
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ayahuasquero]
    #12570011 - 05/15/10 10:20 PM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Quote:

ayahuasquero said:
Well said. Guillermo is a brujo, and everyone in Iquitos knows it. He is responsible for killing a man during a ceremony in Europe, and raping several Western women during a ceremony at his center awhile back. Anyone can have some ayahuasa and call themselves a healer. It's the spirits who choose the healer to do the work that they do.

My advice to anyone is to learn all you can before you go pouring out your pockets to fake healers/brujos, or you'll be exploited just like countless others who come to Peru looking for answers in their lives.

I've searched Peru for a long time, and only a handfull of real healers exist in this world. Good luck searching!




Any suggestions on were to look at?


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Invisibleayahuasquero
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Registered: 09/21/08
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: Wolb]
    #12570543 - 05/15/10 11:56 PM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Pucallpa (The Shipibo), Puerto Malanado (one good guy there), Cusco (The Queros). That's a start =)


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OfflineMushroomTrip
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ayahuasquero]
    #12571258 - 05/16/10 02:24 AM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Quote:

ayahuasquero said:
It's the spirits who choose the healer to do the work that they do.





:rofl2::rofl2::rofl2:


--------------------
:bunny::bunnyhug:
All this time I've loved you
And never known your face
All this time I've missed you
And searched this human race
Here is true peace
Here my heart knows calm
Safe in your soul
Bathed in your sighs

:bunnyhug: :yinyang2:


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OfflineShroomDoom
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: MushroomTrip]
    #12571986 - 05/16/10 08:52 AM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Quote:

MushroomTrip said:
Quote:

ayahuasquero said:
It's the spirits who choose the healer to do the work that they do.





:rofl2::rofl2::rofl2:





Hmm... I don't suppose you have been down there in amazonia drinking yaje with real taitas (elders)? Didn't think so.

It's all nonsense anyways, right?  So why don't you go down there yourself and prove that the taitas drinking aya well into their 90s are bullshitting about this spirit stuff?

oh wait you'd get eaten alive trying to get to them because you wouldn't last an hour in the hazardous remote areas that they live well into their 80's 90's in.

On second thought maybe you should just stick to surfin the net on shrooms dude. :shrug:


--------------------


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OfflineIamheasyouarehe
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12572039 - 05/16/10 09:11 AM (9 years, 7 days ago)

You can get eaten alive down there?
:eek:
Aren't  there DMT eating jaguars there too?


--------------------
¡Dolphin Power!



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OfflineShroomDoom
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: Iamheasyouarehe]
    #12572111 - 05/16/10 09:39 AM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Quote:

Iamheasyouarehe said:
You can get eaten alive down there?
:eek:
Aren't  there DMT eating jaguars there too?




yup. and pink river dolphins that will try to have sex with you.
don't be enticed because they will turn you into one of them!
:crazy:


--------------------


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Offlinesnoot
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12572169 - 05/16/10 09:57 AM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Quote:

Hundreds of people come to Espíritu de Anaconda each year to be treated with ayahuasca (pronounced “ayuh-HWOS-cuh”)



lol I like this part, haha that ayuh-HWOS-cuh is harder to pronounce then ayahuasca. haha good story tho.!


--------------------



I am incapable of conceiving infinity, and yet I do not accept finity.
- Simone de Beauvoir -


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Invisibleayahuasquero
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12572440 - 05/16/10 11:04 AM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Yes Shroomdoom, that poster is one of the many who'd have a terrifying experience and never return again, if he'd even survive down there, that is. I've studied with elders in Peru, and what they speak is the truth. While he laughs there comfortable at his computer screen, the real world is still spinning and preparing for a great change. If none of you are spiritually ready, like the laughing poster above, you'll be of the many who won't survive.


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OfflineMushroomTrip
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12574123 - 05/16/10 04:25 PM (9 years, 7 days ago)

Quote:

ShroomDoom said:
Hmm... I don't suppose you have been down there in amazonia drinking yaje with real taitas (elders)? Didn't think so.

It's all nonsense anyways, right?  So why don't you go down there yourself and prove that the taitas drinking aya well into their 90s are bullshitting about this spirit stuff?

oh wait you'd get eaten alive trying to get to them because you wouldn't last an hour in the hazardous remote areas that they live well into their 80's 90's in.

On second thought maybe you should just stick to surfin the net on shrooms dude. :shrug:




Nice display of frustration. :crazy2:


--------------------
:bunny::bunnyhug:
All this time I've loved you
And never known your face
All this time I've missed you
And searched this human race
Here is true peace
Here my heart knows calm
Safe in your soul
Bathed in your sighs

:bunnyhug: :yinyang2:


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OfflineShroomDoom
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: MushroomTrip]
    #12577702 - 05/17/10 07:30 AM (9 years, 6 days ago)

Quote:

MushroomTrip said:
Quote:

ShroomDoom said:
Hmm... I don't suppose you have been down there in amazonia drinking yaje with real taitas (elders)? Didn't think so.

It's all nonsense anyways, right?  So why don't you go down there yourself and prove that the taitas drinking aya well into their 90s are bullshitting about this spirit stuff?

oh wait you'd get eaten alive trying to get to them because you wouldn't last an hour in the hazardous remote areas that they live well into their 80's 90's in.

On second thought maybe you should just stick to surfin the net on shrooms dude. :shrug:




Nice display of frustration. :crazy2:



Just sayin, man.


you wouldn't last an hour. :goodmorning:


--------------------


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OfflineMushroomTrip
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: ShroomDoom]
    #12577835 - 05/17/10 08:26 AM (9 years, 6 days ago)

Did your crystal globe tell you that? :smirk:


--------------------
:bunny::bunnyhug:
All this time I've loved you
And never known your face
All this time I've missed you
And searched this human race
Here is true peace
Here my heart knows calm
Safe in your soul
Bathed in your sighs

:bunnyhug: :yinyang2:


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OfflineShroomDoom
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Re: Emotions run wild at ayahuasca healing centre in Peru [Re: MushroomTrip]
    #12577864 - 05/17/10 08:38 AM (9 years, 6 days ago)

Quote:

MushroomTrip said:
Did your crystal globe tell you that? :smirk:




oh my obsidian orb? :yesnod: I WISH!!!



:nonono:
sadly I don't have that thing anymore. I put some not so beuno energy with that and had to bury it. ayahuasca, peyote tell me that if i want to walk this path of light no mas brujeria para me. so adios obsidianos!


--------------------


Edited by ShroomDoom (05/17/10 08:47 AM)


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