Rise of ayahuasca ceremonies in USA

Discuss

67 Responses to “Rise of ayahuasca ceremonies in USA”

  1. MetaBaron says:

    Just one more little tidbit: An ayahuasca church in France got busted a couple of years ago.

    They played the religious freedom card in the courts and won, but the French government banned the plants shortly afterwards…

  2. kersplat says:

    Yeah, I did a two day session last September. The first night was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Too much to explain here, but I did feel that there was telepathy with the others in the room at least in terms of deep feelings. I made a commitment to shoulder the pain of others and became a portal for their pain. I was in terrible emotional and physical pain for hours.

    The next day an M.D. who was present told me it was like watching a movie where she saw members of what she took to be my clan in slavery or bondage and I was a portal for their pain, releasing it. It made little sense to me but I later learned that the Irish were indeed made slaves from the times of Queen Elizabeth through Cromwell. Real? All I can tell you is the pain I experienced, the sense of loss of control, was all too real.

    This is not for the light-hearted. I value my experience yet cannot recommend this to anyone. Expect your ego to be broken down. You will feel small and insignificant but this may be what you need. It hurt at the time but has given me courage and less fear of death. I will do this again at some point.

  3. Joel Johnson says:

    Waiting for the caffeine-boosted version from Anheuser Busch.

  4. phreatic says:

    Flip, what ever your experiences with such things are I feel like you are coming off as way too know-it-all for something that is very personal and experienced differently by everyone. I don’t really think that is your intention though.

  5. burndownthemission says:

    I have been looking into Ayahuasca for some time, and even considered a trip to Peru. I actually live in San Francisco. Can anyone recommend where I might find contact information for ceremonies here in California?

  6. Takuan says:

    they might know
    http://www.udv.org.br/english/index.html

    also, read Wade Davis’ “One River”

  7. LOLcat Stevens says:

    Recently, I met a guy who took part in an ayahuasca ceremony, had a grand revelation that he wasn’t living the life he wanted, and subsequently ditched his wife and kids to move to Peru and marry a local. So, yeah, clearly not a thing to be taken lightly.

  8. Dustin Driver says:

    I just ate a huge plate of spinach. Can someone check in on me every few minutes? I feel like I need a spirit guide.

  9. Songe says:

    Wow man…

  10. flip says:

    METABARON , FEBRUARY 6, 2008 2:46 AM

    THANK YOU I agree with everything you’ve said!
    especially….

    “If you are a beginner, ayahuasca -if it works- will make you VERY vulnerable and suggestible. The phenomenon descibed by Jungians as “transference” is relevant here. It will be very easy to believe the magic shaman is doing the tricks, whereas in fact the director of this movie is you.”

    If I may follow up on that point :
    The experience for the novice is confusing and foreign
    Often the individual while searching for answers and explanations will quickly latch onto those offered to them by the anyone donning the robes of mystic or authority.
    The experience arises from the individual in conjunction with the plants

    Hence “Choose your allies wisely”

    Sorry for those that read my above text as being as “flip’s a know it all”
    I just want to relay information and perspectives so that people can move in a positive direction and not be mislead by shams like the one featured in the article.
    There’s a whole legacy pop subculture out there generated by fakers and perpetuated by bozo’s that people are exposed to.

    It’s tough going but there’s good people working changing that situation …. one thought and person at a time.
    :)
    peace and respects
    flip~

  11. nezzyidy says:

    WARNING: BEWARE AURORA BAHA!

    I attended a gathering by this person and he is creepy. I have friends who have also had bad experiences with him. A large community is now boycotting his ceremonies.

    His name is Francis and he goes by Lobo Siete Truenos. Read this before attending his ceremony.
    He has been caught lying about his past.

    True Scam of the Eagle and the Condor?
    http://ayahuasca.tribe.net/thread/a7b95ff8-bae1-4121-b3f5-5a2b93e9e43b

    also:
    http://singingtotheplants.blogspot.com/

  12. Anonymous says:

    It is my belif that Ayahuasca is a medicine that will facilitate things like meditation and introspective insight.

    But also that all of this is possible without ayahuasca as well. I’m thinking of the mediums and other people who are able to connect to the netherworld with deep meditative practice and skill.

    Because remeber, Ayahuasca is essentialy Brainsoup. The active ingrident, DMT, is already being produced by your pineal gland and it’s always present in your body all the time.

    Which is why it’s so silly to ‘outlaw’ such a natural phenomenah.

    I recently had my first ayahuasca experience and it was quite interesting. But so far i prefer the intensity and vigour of smoked dmt to the brew.

    It’s really nice to hear this is getting some attention over the world. I think we all could do with getting to know our inner third eye a bit more.

  13. jebz says:

    There is an Amazon Shamanic Conference held in Iquitos, Peru every year. I went to this last year and it was my very first encounter with shamans and ayahuasca. I was absolutely stunned! The Conference had well known Presenters from around the World there speaking about ayahuasca and there were around 20 Shamans there they spoke as well. It lasted 9 days with three days/evenings off to be in a Ceremony with the Shamans that you felt comfortable with.
    There is another one this July.
    The website is: http://www.soga-del-alma.org and then you have to click on shamanism conference.

  14. esoter1c says:

    Flip knows what he’s talking about.

    As for me I’m lucky enough to have done ceremony twice in Iquitos.

    I’ve done LSD/Shrooms/San Pedro/Peruvian Torch/Salvia/etc…

    None are like Aya in any way.

    & Flip, you know there’s no reason to worry about this “currendero” making $ of people as The Madre won’t reveal her secrets to anyone that isn’t ready/worthy.

    That’s the best thing about Aya. ;)

  15. noen says:

    Some beautiful Ayahuasca inspired art by Pablo Amaringo.

    The Cosmic Serpent

    Could you sum up your book “The Cosmic Serpent, DNA and the Origins of Knowledge”?

    Research indicates that shamans access an intelligence, which they say is nature’s, and which gives them information that has stunning correspondences with molecular biology.

    Jeremy Narby posits that the “junk DNA” in our genome isn’t junk, the long repeat sequences such as ACACACACACACACAC function as emitters/receptors tuned to a specific frequency. That’s his theory anyway.

  16. Takuan says:

    yeah,but sooner or later,people outgrow the bible stuff and get back to the Way. Not nice calling christians demons though, understandable, but not nice.

  17. Adam Stanhope says:

    Are you still breathing, Dustin?

  18. Takuan says:

    oh,and I do recommend reading all you can first (I like Wade Davis)

  19. Dustin Driver says:

    Oh yes . . . but there’s something wrong with my forearms . . . I don’t remember these anchor tattoos either . . .

  20. Antinous says:

    deceiving spirits

    Is that like when I fill the empty Ketel One bottle with Stoli?

  21. calebcharles says:

    I think McKenna would have enjoyed reading this thread.

  22. fnc says:

    “The potion often reveals its celebrated wisdoms only after repeat encounters.”

    Well that’s convenient for the dudes getting 200 bucks a head for each “encounter”.

  23. aridgreen says:

    The CBC has an excellent two-part podcast documentary on this titled “In Search of the Divine Vegetal”

    Follow the Link:
    http://www.cbc.ca/ideas/podcast.html

    Like removing the brain and giving it a good going over with a waterpick, washing away the detritus from all the nooks and crannies.

  24. fALk says:

    Hmmm!

    The photo included with this item is released on a Creative Commons non-commercial license, according to your note with it.

    Since Boing Boing runs ads, I would assume somebody is making money from your site and as such, Boing Boing IS a commercial site. Thus, you are using that image illegally.

    Shame on you guys.

    I agree, boingboing either you are embracing the right thing and stick with it or just let it be. Stop using ads or stop using free culture stuff on your site – its your decision. With all the hits you are neither nonprofit nor have the rights to be above the fray. At least pay the original photographer a share of the clicks you get today.

  25. les illuminations says:

    If anyone’s interested in a non-jargon, open-eyed account of an ayahuasca experience. We filmed mine:

    < http://video.google.co.uk/videoplay?docid=1547240899855868654&hl=en-GB>

  26. Bergjylt says:

    Sounds like what the sami noaide and nordic seidworkers get up to here in scandinavia. They’re also travelling and announcing ceremonies – some take money, some don’t. They make do with rune drums and chants, and I’ve never seen them make extraordinary claims like these, though.

  27. MetaBaron says:

    Burroughs was freaking out.

    I agree with Flip’s comments- in fact , in a typical ayahausca synchronicity, s/he posted the first comment at the same time as i was writing this, and pretty much said what I wanted to say.

    I have taken ayahuasca around 100 times, over the last 10 years or so. I am not going to detail here what these experiences were “like” or “about”- but :

    It is not really like Salvia divinorum at all, but very similar to top-quality psilocybin mushrooms, in some ways. It does go a lot deeper, and is actually a clearer experience. After a full-on session , most drinkers feel rejuvenated the following day.

    The doorways it opens are not so much about great insights or things of the mind, but emotional catharsis, heart-opening , healing of relations, psychic/biospheric/cosmic/spiritual connections etc.
    It also appears to work on the physical part of the drinker, toning the immune system, and possibly works as an adaptogen. This is no internal home cinema. The visions that are so talked about are just the icing on the cake.

    It contains DMT as its visionary ingredient, and reversible (short duration) MAO inhibitors which enhance the effects. It does not break your brain, unless you want an excuse to break it – and straight ayahuasca without any admixtures has never killed anyone-

    But it is certainly not something to do or take lightly , and cannot be recommended to all and sundry. Nausea is quite an insignificant part of it, when it works. If one is not prepared, and not open , one can expect 2-3 VERY hard hours. This is not something to dabble with, it is something for those who are willing to do some serious work.

    It is true that its effects may not become apparent from a single exposure.

    Whether one will benefit from it depends on many things and the circumstances under which it is taken are quite important.

    There is a rising wave of people out to exploit this latest new age fad , and basically advertising and selling experiences they could never possibly gurantee.
    In many cases these people are not even in any position to be doing this, in terms of their being in touch with what it is that they’re doing, IMO.
    In many cases they’re just getting off on being priests and their communications on ayahuasca are more to do with the establishment of their priesthood than with your needs.

    Beware of psychic vultures, they’re all human, all too human!

    If you are a beginner, ayahuasca -if it works- will make you VERY vulnerable and suggestible. The phenomenon descibed by Jungians as “transference” is relevant here. It will be very easy to believe the magic shaman is doing the tricks, whereas in fact the director of this movie is you .

    The actual cost of the tea is minimal, it would cost about $20 to prepare a dose in Europe or the US. Preparation is no special science, there is no hocus pocus, it is basically a concentrated water extract of two plants. All one needs to know is how much of each plant, which is easy to find online. (most sources err on the side of caution)- Not that I recommend to anyone reading this to actually do this- the internets really isn’t the place!

    In the Amazon, different medicine men add various other plants in the mix for specific medicinal effects, as the basic blend seems to enhance the effects of many other healing plants, or makes it easier for the medicine man/woman to understand their effects.

    For those determined to experience ayahuasca, my advice is DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE, and Don’t Be A Tourist. Believe me, you are much better off doing it in familar environs with people you know and fully trust and who are informed. The info on safety parameters is out there and many people safely use ayahuasca in their communities without having to be a tourist or spend hundrends.

    Get informed. Keep it under the radar!

    There is a lot of hype on this at the moment , and it is about the promotion of expensive shamanic holidays and retreats, via the preying on people’s ignorance and fear.

    The meme being propagated is “Go see the experts”. Id say , use your mind and listen to your heart. The true teacher is within you. Nobody will do your work for you , no matter how much you payed them. Of course it is dangerous, the world is a dangerous place, especially near the outer limits.

    Sorry if this is toolongtoread, or sounds like hippy crap. I would like to warn people that things aren’t always quite what they seem in the ayahuasca world.

    There was a recent incident in which a ceremony for tourists in Peru was raided by armed bandits who proceeded to rob everyone and rape at least one of the women present. I could look for a source for this freaky story if people doubt it.

    The talk in the following video link highlights the negative effects on traditional cultures that “shamanic” tourism has been causing since the days of Castaneda (trickster). Everyone thinking of going to Peru to “do the shaman thing” please watch this:

    http://video.google.es/videoplay?docid=1471567783918794440

  28. steffrock says:

    My officemate told me about a book that was compiled of letters that Ginsberg and Burroughs wrote each other after their experiences with Ayahuasca: The Yage Letters.. I think I’ll read it.

  29. Anonymous says:

    yeah, that’s what i would recommend:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Yage_Letters

    transforming stuff, i promise!
    but highly adictive…;)

    cheers°sigmundo

  30. Maddy says:

    Yes, but is it LEGAL? If so, find a delivery system that makes it taste like a Luden’s Cough Drop and bank all the money before the gov outlaws it.

  31. shadrack says:

    I know this won’t deter anyone, but this stuff is not to be entered into lightly. The Purge sounds bad, but it is much worse than you can possibly imagine. And like many things of this nature, it can make stupid things seem profound, and profound things, like breathing, seem stupid. You have to start worrying when a trend is sold on the “celebrities” who have joined the crowd. Sting. Big deal. What ISN’T Sting into? So once again, kiddies, it’s uncle Shadrack warning you, don’t try this stuff because it sounds interesting. It is very serious sh*t, and you’re messing with your brain. Most of you only have one of those, and once you’ve broken it, you sometimes can’t un-break it. Now ignore what i’ve told you and go pay your money and takes your chance. While you’re at it, climb Everest. Rant over. That is all.

  32. LarryPA says:

    Hmmm!

    Th pht ncldd wth ths tm s rlsd n Crtv Cmmns nn-cmmrcl lcns, ccrdng t yr nt wth t.

    Snc Bng Bng rns ds, wld ssm smbdy s mkng mny frm yr st nd s sch, Bng Bng S cmmrcl st. Ths, y r sng tht mg llglly.

    Shm n y gys.

  33. dculberson says:

    Shadrack, I agree that it’s serious stuff but generally disagree with your rant about ‘broken’ brains. I say generally because if this was to be abused freely in the way that some hallucinogens have been abused (heroic doses taken cavalierly in order to impress others or make reality disappear) then you’re right, some might suffer as a result. I haven’t taken ayahuasca, so can’t comment specifically on it, but believe that many of the natural hallucinogens are serious stuff not to be toyed with. But taken respectfully in a safe environment, they can be the source of great things.

    I don’t know anyone that’s forgotten to breathe, though. At that level, it’s probably not the hallucinogens but some sort of poison!!

  34. mellowknees says:

    I’m only doing it if Dr. Orpheus, Brock Sampson and The Alchemist are there with me.

  35. Adam Stanhope says:

    I’ve consumed the brew and had a powerful and profound experience that provided me with some valuable insight into my life. Unfortunately there was a terrifying element to the experience as well. It should be emphasized that indeed there is nothing “recreational” about ayahuasca. It would be wrong to lump the ayahuasca experience in with [oftentimes] recreational LSD, psilocybin or mescaline experiences.

    I don’t regret my ayahuasca experience – again, I found it to be insightful. I have no desire to experience it again, however.

  36. Rossifumi says:

    There are so many different elements that do the same thing: Loss of Ego is the ultimate goal.

    That’s when people realize the truths about their life.

  37. millman says:

    I wouldn’t describe psilocybin as recreational beyond the quantity needed to get the physical body high. This stuff sounds therapeutic for the same reason any hallucinogen is.

  38. Adam Stanhope says:

    Interesting that Shadrack mentioned breathing.

    I was under the distinct impression during my experience that I was not breathing. Intellectually, I recognized that I was breathing, else how could I remain conscious and alive? No matter how carefully I listened or covered my mouth with my hand, however, I couldn’t feel or hear myself breath.

    I remember asking my sober “sitter” to keep an eye on me. “I know I’m breathing because I’m not dead, but I can’t for the life of me detect it happening. Can you hear me breathing? Are you sure?”

    Creepy!

  39. flip says:

    Mark, you did it again – but at least you’re getting better.

    http://www.boingboing.net/2008/01/24/videos-of-people-smo.html#comments

    We’re all generally agreed that Aya is NOT a toy
    All of these Entheogens are tools to be approached with forethought and not to be taken cavalierly by anyone.
    Salvia D is nothing compared to hausca, pot or even lsd
    that’s not hype.

    Just like any powerful tool it can help as well as hurt. Perhaps not physically (with precautions) as much as mentally it can be quite harrowing or shattering for even the experienced. I don’t recommend noobs jump into tryptamines without first learning how to perform the mental gymnastics required. As well as having grown personally grounded as people and then with guidance… (just to be on the safe side)

    Our western cultural perspectives towards “drugs” isn’t conducive to a rewarding interaction in most cases.
    Please don’t take it the wrong way
    Aya should be legal for responsible people to use
    in a proper setting and legit motivation as a medicine.

    However,
    Following someone like PINBACK (Pinchbeck) or the SHAM featured in the LA Times article will only lead to empty spaces, poor taste in wardrobe or much worse.
    The scene is full of self styled bozo’s like that who is basically ignorant of the law or out for taking people’s money.
    IF I would have known that “aya shaman” was in my backyard I might have gone up there to confront his ass and beat him down for being the profiteering fraud he is.

    I am of the school that the “plant teaches” it’s “spirit” as allies the human guide who is just there to help direct, focus or “heal”.
    Robes from peru, magic stones, rattles and feathers are not required.. but theater for those tourists that want bragging rights to their new age friends.

    I am thankful that the journalist did see through his facade and avoidance of direct questions. I do hope that people wise up a bit to his scheme as he’s breaking several laws and the DEA would have a field day with his case (interstate transport, sales and provision of a schedule 1 etc.)

    I am also thankful that Gina Piccalo also mentioned the huasca research project and the findings of J Calloway. I was one of the people attending the 96 conference when he presented his findings and increased 5HT receptors flowing self administered B-Carboline’s.

    It just frustrates me to such a great degree when I read marks selections pertaining to “drug culture”. Where many people believe that erowid “has all the answers”.
    Honestly speaking… it doesn’t at all… and this site has so much power to help tilt the scales in how people are presented this type of information. It can make the diference in how these do or don’t get incorporated into our society effectively.

    There’s so many people that learn to cater to preconceived notions of shamanism in order to turn a profit that it both saddens and sickens me to see her misrepresented by those that don’t have a relationship with the plant.

    Here’s a clue…for those that are interested:
    ” Choose your allies wisely” (both plant and personal).

    The real people don’t need to play dress up, write books or develop a following to inflate their egos’. Any idiot can take a drug and echo others words and description, while the worst mimic what they think they should look and act like… vs really be in tune.
    Lastly… When you’re ready… it will always come to you… naturally.

    Thanks for reading this.
    Flip~

  40. Brian Damage says:

    I have no experience with ayahuasca but my wife and I tried a “similar” substance last year – Salvia Divinorum. I blogged about our experience, and blogged again the next day to describe the utter sorrow I felt after my relatively mild salvia revelations (I felt 100% better the next day – just needed time for it to all sink in). We shared maybe 1/5 of the single gram we bought and the remainder has sat undisturbed ever since – Despite my reluctant enthusiasm in my blog entries I’m just too scared to revisit it.

    You can get more information about ayahuasca, salvia, and other legal ethnobotanicals at Erowid. There’s one thing you need to know above all others, though: once you consume and commit you’re in it for the long haul. Buy the ticket, take the ride. Make the best of it. Don’t surrender to astonishment or horror. Don’t let it end before you’ve taken something from it.

  41. thecat17 says:

    Remember that part in The Invisibles where King Mob sees Ragged Robin outside of time, and she’s this gigantic worm where each segment was an image of her at a different point in time?

    Salvia was exactly like that for me. Needless to say, it’s not for recreational use. :)

  42. flip says:

    STEFFROCK , FEBRUARY 5, 2008 3:34 PM

    The Yage letters are basically outdated and misleading reading if you’re interested in either Aya or painting a picture of souther america.
    Burroughs was really a sexually confused drug addled honosexual along with Ginsberg. He neither conveys wisdom or anything viable except for his “Doc Schindler” who was in real life the late Dr. R.E. Schultes a famous botanical researcher and author of dozens of papers on the subject of Entheobotany (Ayahausca and other medicinal plants).

    You would be FAR BETTER off reading “One River” by Wade Davis
    http://www.amazon.com/One-River-Wade-Davis/dp/0684834960
    Not only is it richer in information but it’s accurate.

    Again, if you’re interested… google:
    Dr. R.E. Schultes
    You may also buy Pharmacotheon by J. Ott
    IF you can locate a copy… it’s the best well grounded book you can get on the subject.
    http://www.alibris.com/search/books/qwork/5095574/used/Pharmacotheon:%20Entheogenic%20Drugs,%20Their%20Plant%20Sources%20and%20History

  43. Takuan says:

    the danger is, like too much philosophy, in getting completely knurd.

  44. Spatch says:

    INDIAN: Oh, my White Brother!
    A Freak gets off the bus.
    FREAK: Hey, man! Don’t let him bring you down now. There’s a lot of young people in this country, just like myself, who really know where the Indian’s at. And don’t worry. Soon we’re all gonna be out here on the Reservation, livin’ like Indians, an’ dressin like Indians and doing all the simple, beautiful things that you Indians do. Hey– got any peyote?

    (The Firesign Theatre keeps it real in the past!)

  45. Adam Stanhope says:

    Salvia is another one I found both profound and frightening – by no means a recreational experience.

    I felt as if I time-traveled with salvia and the scene I revisited, from my youth, was important to me. Seeing it again was valuable.

    It was also terrifying and I’m certain that it’s not something I’d try again.

  46. Moon says:

    It sounds like peyote.

  47. Spiritsurfer says:

    Re: choose your allies wisely – no kidding!

    why do you have to drink ayahuasca to “really be in tune”

    stay away – ayahuasca is a very powerful hallucinogen with many predatory tricksters masquerading as healers.

    meditate – its free.

  48. Anonymous says:

    Flip, wow your such an expert, haha.

    Tell me flip, do you smell sarcasm coming off my armor?

    I make, use, & share it among many other things. People like you who promote such things as “KEEPING IT ON THE DOWN LOW”, are posers. You put off a shadow demon vibe buddy. The kind responsible for dark ages. So take that false holier than thou art nonsense into the shadows you by your own statement wish to dwell in if that is what you desire as others find such wicked decisions trivial at best, the surfs can read you know…you know…you know…you know an echo.

    I think you have fear in your heart, worried someone is gonna take away a flame you hold dear. The truly guilty are those with fear in their hearts. If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, and acts like a duck it may very well be some type of duck quack quack quack. Its not wabbit season, its duck season.

    The act you describe equates to censorship of the truth for nothing more than selfish greed, truly a downfall of man. So you lot go right ahead hord secrets like smog the dragon & may arrows fly true from noble fingers straight into your hearts to fulfill such prophecy before heads are severed to hang as signs warning of what happens to those who would “let them eat cake” while you stuff the ugly faces you choose to show.

    FLIP & followers , Oh great trail blazers of the beaten bloody path, haha.

    I am sure you have many wonderful experiences filled with wisdom to communicate. Only the truly wise shall admit that they are ignorant. I am vastly ignorant but probably not as much as you.

    This world is red in tooth & claw my friends so lets sharpen our spears to go and kill the beast that we might pass our cups in joy as we feast. Guide your own hands to their filled plates less loathsome beasts such as above guide it without need that they might mind others plates. Hear ye well, you do not require a guide. Though it never hurts when a learned traveler knows what they are doing as demonstrated by example of leadership. Careful you are not led away from the true path which is whatever path you wish to take by those who by their own words wish to lead you away from that which you seek.

    See ALTERED STATES also see DUNE ;-)

    “It is by will alone that I set my mind in motion, it is by the juice of safu that thoughts acquire speed, the lips acquire stains, the stains become a warning. It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.”

    Ayahuasca is good medicine.

  49. Spiritsurfer says:

    Re: choose your allies wisely – no kidding!

    why do you have to drink ayahuasca to “really be in tune”

    stay away – ayahuasca is a very powerful hallucinogen with many predatory tricksters masquerading as healers.

    meditate – its free.

  50. dv8 says:

    I have experimented with mind expanding substances in my past. Since learning of ayahuasca, it has been tops on my list for my shamanic journey. This past year i was put in contact with Lobo Siete Truenos, and the experiences have been, enlightening, arduous, healing, cathartic, and loving. Recently, I have sat with other aya groups, and my 4 times with Lobo cannot compare. He presents the medicine with grace, love, light and divinity. When he is singing the icaros, leading the ceremony, i have felt the spirit of ancient shaman working through him, felt like i was in a Peruvian hut. He is not a SHAM! His medicine has been handed down by powerful, ancient shaman before him. The icaros he sings throughout the ceremonies, have been passed on for thousands of years. I truly feel he is legit, and a real ayahuasquero.
    Some of you (Flip) keep bringing up the money. Well, this is what Lobo does for a living, and he does it to spread the teachings of the mother, not to exploit our wallets. Consider what it entails to do this work. $120 is a lot cheaper than $1000 to get to Peru.

  51. Moon says:

    See the movie “Altered States”

  52. Songe says:

    Could we please please keep this sort of thing on the DL?

  53. fltndboat says:

    Flip and Metabaron… You are both on it. Thank You. The experience of paying for altering is fundamentally different from earning a teaching.

  54. Takuan says:

    so easy to see from the comments above why some are terrified of other people using such plants

  55. Moon says:

    If you are too young to remember “Altered States”, the Simpsons “Homer Hot Pepper” episode was similar!

  56. Takuan says:

    truly, he is an iron;

    this bit of twaddle is the only protection.

    “United States Relgious Freedom Restoration Act : SECTION 3, FREE EXERCISE OF RELIGION PROTECTED

    1. IN GENERAL.—Government shall not substantially burden a person’s exercise of religion even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability, except as provided in subsection (b).
    2. EXCEPTION.—Government may substantially burden a person’s exercise of religion only if it determines that application of the burden to the person—
    1. is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest; and
    2. is the least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.
    3. JUDICIAL RELIEF.—A person whose religious exercise has been burdened in violation of this section may assert that violation as a claim or defense in a judicial proceeding and obtain appropriate relief against a government. Standing to assert a claim or defense under this section shall be governed by the general rules of standing under article III of the Constitution.”

  57. Brian Damage says:

    @Takuan

    I don’t mean to discourage people from having these kinds of experiences altogether – I simply mean to reinforce that these substances give us ordinary peons the opportunity to learn a great deal about ourselves whenever and wherever we choose. This is a big deal, a bit of a gamble, and an amazing and wonderful chance to experience the world in a strange new way.

    I won’t lie – salvia was very scary and made me feel very small. Here’s an excerpt of one Erowid experience I read:

    “I can’t believe I’d never realized that this was my existence. Why did I have to find out now? I wish I had never realized. Ever. I would have been much happier existing this way and not knowing it.”

    But you know what? It’s good to know. Life is what it is. It’s not good or bad. If you dare to learn then life belongs to you and not vice versa.

  58. Takuan says:

    amazing how much we completely agree

  59. Anonymous says:

    Prior to my Ayahuasca experience I had limited interactions with psychedelics, mainly shrooms. I attended a ceremony with shamans at the direction of a friend and experienced it for the fist time.

    I will re-iterate that it is not a recreational drug and should not be taken without trusted professionals. It makes you violently ill and can cause visions/feelings of death.

    Your experience will vary significantly on your intentions going into the treatment. As I had no prior experience and therefore no idea of what to expect I entered with an open mind. What I felt was primarily a very deep connection with the energy of the universe and my fellow partakers. If I were more strictly religious I would equate it to an experience with god (whoever you may worship).

    Overall a very profound and worthwhile experience (despite the severe physical ailments endured). I would recommend anyone dealing with moderate or severe physical/ mental ailments seek out an ayahuasca professional. I would also recommend this to anyone interested in experiencing alternate realities and gaining valuable insight into their personalities and lives.

    I cannot state strongly enough that this is not a party drug. You must trust explicitly the people who are mixing and administering your ayahuasca concoction.

  60. Avi Solomon says:

    See also the classic:

    Ayahuasca Visions by Pabl Amaringo
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/2052304/Ayahuasca-Visions-Amaringo

  61. MetaBaron says:

    I’m glad to see some switched-on people here…

    I agree that the enterpise featured in this article is EXTREMELY DODGY and I believe Mark Frauenfelder would have never posted this if he was aware of what ayahuasca entails, and what kind of people are attracted to this newage priesthood story. . . This kind of “psychedelic enterpreneurism” is harmful to the psychedelic underground and is just what the DEA is looking for as an excuse for even more ABSURD criminalisation of plants.

    There is a powerful movement online to create a situation of dependency on priests, churches and mediators, and promote expensive and very questionable ayahuasca holidays and ceremonies , by exploiting people’s fears, ignorance , and the growing need to experience the connectivity that ayahuasca can facilitate.

    I don’t believe this medicine will “change the world” – but it can certainly be of enormous, even life-saving, benefit for many people. I’d like to participate in an online counter-movement to expose the charlatans and exploiters and present the other side of the truth about ayahuasca and its potential. I believe the ayahuasca story has been infiltrated by wannabe priests, psychic vultures and other dangerous people on serious power trips.

    Challenging the emerging status quo in this scene is hard work on the usual forums, as they are already quite full of people who are either directly involved in commercial operations or already brainwashed into believing the outright lies and misdirection promoted by the $hamans.

    Threats, sliming and psychic attacks are part of the territory and myself and others on a similar tip don’t bother with sites like ayahuasca tribe and ayahuasca forums , where a neurotic defensiveness prevails.

    Pinchbeck appears to have failed to use his considerable influence in the American scene to speak about these issues and seems , in fact, to be mostly full of youknowhat . Another site beginning with E and ending with d is not even worth mentioning here.

    FLIP , i’ don’t see how i can contact you through this site. I’d like to invite you and all others on a similar wavelength to check out a new , ad-free , unsponsored, psychoactive, collaborative blog starting up, where the space for people to write and post links/media about these and any other against-the-grain issues is available.
    Registration is by invite only…. check my user profile for the URL…
    FLIP: if you’d like an account in the blog i mention, create a temporary email address and post it here, and i’ll do the same…then i’ll contact you and we’ll take it from there. I can’t think of any other way to get in touch .

    Thanks and take care everybody…

  62. Takuan says:

    I used to worry that the ignorant, the irresponsible, the immature,the predatory,the misguided and the just plain stupid would make such a mess of things like ayahusaca that it needed defending. Or they needed defending.

    Now I’m not so sure.

  63. flip says:

    You don’t need to drink Aya or take anything else to “get in tune”
    I didn’t want to communicate that at all…
    I don’t believe I said that in my post… please re-read.

    It’s a tool that has powerful effects that often go far beyond what people think they want or what they’re think they’re after.
    I’m not trying to by mystical or hype it up.
    It’s just that it’s difficult to communicate effectively the maelstrom of effects and combat peoples notions of “Psychedelic Drugs”.

    Also forget “altered states” it’s NOTHING like Aya or any entheogenic experience for that matter. It only serves to badly color peoples perceptions of what to expect.
    The best representation within a movie is “Blueberry” or
    “Renegade” in the USA domestic release on DVD.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blueberry_(film)

    I think that most will clearly understand the metaphor “Heaven and Hell” referring to drinking Hausca after watching that.
    It can dive straight down into your own personal hellish fears made visible and penetrating as well as the insightfully expansive. IF by some chance you think “wow that looks cool” after watching it… you’re not ready. You can consume it and you’ll move in the wrong directions. (imho)

    and yes I FULLY AGREE lets all keep this on the “down low”.
    Don’t hype it in any way… search out and cultivate the plants.
    Aya deserves better than what I fear most will misunderstand her to be ($200 dollar donations indeed!) this bozo broadcasts for profit.

    Grow your own and DO NOT BUY the quick dried fixings. Develop a relationship with the plants themselves by giving them a good home and the experience will be much more rewarding.

    Thank you for reading this

    Flip~

  64. Patrick Dodds says:

    It’s when you mix this stuff with a lack of gun control … oh wait, we did that.

  65. phazeaction says:

    I have partaken in ayahuasca. the experience was life-changing.

    for the better?

    debatable.

  66. Moon says:

    Flip, I don’t know what your experiences were, but my experience with peyote, in particular, were very similar to ‘Altered States’ and that was way before the movie came out.