It was Thursday, March 7th, 2019 and I was in my 6th ever Ayahuasca experience at Santuario Huishtin Retreat in Peru. By 750 pm that night I had drunk a full cup of Ayahuasca. I have done two before but I find one is a good place for me. I get in contact with her and I can come out of it if I want to. I do see myself taking 2-3 cups in a ceremony in the future, however. There is a benefit, I believe, from going deeper sometimes.
After drinking I went back to my place in the Maloca and sat. As it turned out I would be waiting a while in this particular ceremony for anything much at all to happen as the Shaman (gene) didn’t start singing for at least an hour. I didn’t know if he was deliberately waiting or what. I had the impression he was getting up and down several times but its dark and you can’t quite tell what’s going on.
Without any Icaros I found it hard to get into any hallucinations. Also, I think the Shaman had diluted the Ayahuasca brew somehow due to one of the other participants being very sensitive to it. This is also probably added to my inability to see many visions at the beginning of this ceremony. I was fighting the need to ask for another cup but somehow I felt like I shouldn’t like if the brew was weaker then I’ll deal with that. It’s sorta common for me to do things like this. Whatever the situation is I can often convince myself that it’s the way it should be and I will carry on without attempting to change it or complain. This ends up being a double edged sword sometimes. I digress.
At one point, while I was waiting, I remember getting angry. On occasions like this, I try to view them as an exercise in ego control. I like to think that once you have been through a certain amount of ego dissolution and have become the observer then the next step after observation is sometimes to choose to let your ego free to control you or to hold it back. On this occasion, I thought it best to hold it back.
I also remember being so desperate for some Icaros that I started to sing what I could remember of the Shamans Icaros. I had been able to memorize a little bit. To my surprise, some small geometric patterns emerged as I started to sing. Cool, I thought, Maybe I’ve got a future in Shamanism haha! They soon regressed as I fumbled over them. More practice before I take on singing Icaros.
The apprentice started to sing first. Eventually, Egne came in and joined him and now they were both singing and slowly the hallucinations came over me. I could see and feel a canopy of shapes, tendrils, and colors open up all around me. I say feel because, as has happened before, I could feel a weight and pressure upon me from these hallucinations. They were only weak hallucinations compared to previous ceremonies, a testament to the weaker medicine tonight, but I remember a lot of tendrils. Yellow and green mostly in color and with some cream. The tendrils had eyes in them as well. I liked the cream colors. Cream yellow and green are common colors for me to see. I find I can ‘zoom in’ on the hallucinations to focus on certain parts that interest me and the cream color always makes me do this. It’s so rich to me.
I had many other hallucinations but I don’t recall them now as I write these notes (only a day after the ceremony itself) as they were too weak to remember for more than a moment in my mind. But I remember feeling surrounded and pressured by many weak hallucinations. This much I do recall.
I remember that Mother Ayahuasca did come to me and did send me messages. She crept up on me in this ceremony, probably because of the weakness of the medicine but also because there was a lesson in its weakness. She said to me that ‘she is subtle’ and that to hear and understand with her I had to be attuned to her subtly. She also communicated to me that in her estimation I was not very subtle and I missed a lot due to this. She told me that I had to learn to focus. She told me to develop this focus through meditation and that this would help me to hear her subtle messages more.
She gave me several examples of times and situations when I could have been more aware of subtle cues people were giving me. I replied to her that adding in meditation would be quite an easy thing to add into my routine. I also had the impression from her that being able to quiet my mind in ceremony would help lead me to further breakthrough with her.
Note: In Colombia, I started to pay attention to Buddhist Meditation which I think is very promising and also I ‘meditate’ or am aware of my thoughts in everyday situations. For example, while walking to lunch I can meditate and observe my mind and how it is feeling at that time. I do however think I need to take up a more regular meditation practice. Consistency is something I lack in this department. I will work on this in the future ideally by finding a Buddhist meditation group to practice with.
We also touched on my father. I saw him as a largely sad light. Someone consumed by his ego. His ego was/is running him completely. Due to his shadow (which I don’t fully understand in his particular case) he is locked into a path. I was shown a few times when he tried to get away from his shadow, with pottery and with talk of traveling to Peru of all places. The very place I was having this Ayahuasca Experience. I very much saw him as someone consumed and controlled by his shadow and the ego which formed from it.
I asked Mother Ayahuasca if she could give some of his shadow to me and as soon as I did I felt his shadow oozing into my stomach. It was working. I was taking some ‘things’ from him. I hope it helped him in some way. It’s hard to tell. I had done this before with people in my previous ceremonies with success. Those were also difficult to tell if they had done much or not but there was some evidence of improvement in their lives. Whether or not it was due to my Ayahuasca experience is completely up for debate but I like to think it helped in some way.
Soon after this, I could feel that I was closet the end of ceremony. Soon the Maestro came around to take me for my Limpiasis and soon after that he came to me with a Mapacho. Often during smoking my Mapacho, I am compelled to purge but this time I could not. I had the vague feeling to throw up but something was getting in the way. I suspected my ego was somehow thwarting the purge.
But wait, there’s more…
I lay in the Maloca talking to Mother Ayahuasca. As I had not purged yet she was still in me. I knew that I should purge but I couldn’t so I lay there and asked her to teach me some more things seen as I couldn’t purge her out right now. She obliged.
As I lay there she was doing some sort of surgical examination on me. She went inside of me with some sort of x-ray. More accurately I was hallucinating her examining me and the hallucination was that of some sort of x-ray vision. She found the L5S1 injury which I had in my low back. Not a new thing to her actually but shed found it again let’s say. She was tracing the damage down my left leg, nerve damage. I think she is helping when she is doing this but I wouldn’t say that it’s fixed. But I felt aided in some way and felt gratitude for her attention.
During this hallucination, I remember seeing the area of my hips and abdomen. My bones were green and so was the tissue and the disc (the L5S1 disc which was the cause of the nerve damage). It was very very interesting t see this. She could somehow understand where I was ‘damaged’.
We also took some time to explore my brain. She forced my head down slightly and I could feel energy (for lack of a better word) coming into my brain in lines from the front to the back. These lines of energy went down my neck and into my back. I was imagining her unraveling or somehow altering the part of my brain (neural pathways) which makes me feel undermined.
We then finished the ceremony and Mirissa and I went back to our rooms which were next to each other. As I hadn’t purged I lay on my bed and listened to Music. With Ayahuasca still in my body, the music was amazing! With each song (I played 3 over and over again for about 30 minutes) the music would create visual hallucinations for me. A room emerged created by the music and all kinds of beautiful structures were being formed with the various instruments and melodies. I loved it!
Eventually, Mother Ayahuasca who had been letting me have a good time up until this point interrupted and was attempting to get me to throw up. For all her talk of being subtle earlier in the evening, she was showing none of it here. She made me get up from bed about 3 times before I could purge. Each of the 3 times that I could not purge I returned to my bed to be further confronted by her. Each time she grew more alarming. At one point she ‘screamed’ at me ‘you need to purge asap’ and another time urging me ‘if you don’t purge right now you’re going to have brain damage’. Both of which I thought were a little dramatic but hey she’s Mother Ayahuasca so I rolled with it. The further time I got up I finally realized I need to put my fingers down my throat to make myself throw up. It worked and I threw up a few times. After that, she was still with me but less insistent and more relaxed now.
As I lay there I wanted to listen to something. I put on some music again but it didn’t have the same feel to previously so I changed to a podcast. Mother Ayahuasca came in again and asked me to change it to something more contemplative. Eventually, I put on the Ayahuasca Icaros I have on my phone. She approved and finally left me alone to drift off to my Icaros.
I suppose this is a lesson in Dieta. You are supposed to focus mostly on yourself during an Ayahuasca retreat and I had gotten away from that a little bit. Mother Ayahuasca quickly corrected me, however. I would hazard a guess here and say that pop music and podcasts are probably engaging your ego in some way and as one of the aims of Ayahuasca is ego dissolution it is hindering the process. I suppose it might be able to be compared to a silent meditation retreat whereby the act of speaking to people engages your ego and as such being silent allows you to reduce it. According to Michael Pollan, meditation is also said to replicate the effects of psychedelics on the ego and in this way also draws parallels to Ayahuasca.
I finally fell asleep at probably around 2 or 3 am and remember having some very vivid dreams. And I am someone who doesn’t normally remember dreams.