San Pedro vs Ayahuasca          

My relationship with San Pedro has been one of love and fear.  I visit with him about once per semester and have experienced from it the most powerful healings. I shared in this blog my first encounter (read about it here) where I was shown the bliss of love and the mystic beauty of nature and my second one… a mixed plants ceremony w aya and peyote (read about it here) where I was able to heal several phobias… and another encounter where he decided to visit during my Aya journey and took me out of this world in a 36hrs cosmic trip to Sirius planet (read about it here).

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Meeting The Ancient Ones

You are ready to drink alone, the shaman said casually over breakfast one day after almost two years of regular visits to the jungle for Aya ceremonies. Living at a max 3hrs drive, I was comfortable ignoring his words until life had me move way farther away (16hrs drive and unaccesible by plane)  so no much longer after this, I found myself in a borrowed beach house, drinking half a cup of brew prepared in the jungle and shipped to me….

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The Kill Switch… the Datura Spirit overtakes my Ayahuasca Session

I had come back to the jungle for an intimate ceremony, it would only be me accompanying my little brother (31 now but hey, little brothers will always be little brothers right?) as he had decided to experience Ayahuasca for the first time. The night was moonless, rainy and cold. I was served half a glass and was grateful I could swallow the thick liquid in only one shot

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Reclaiming Power – Medicine Temazcal (Sweat Lodge) Healing


The peak of the experience of this enthogen’s retreat at the mountains was a Temazcal ceremony. The medicine to be served a mix of Ayahuasca and San Pedro and rumor had it the shaman would bring tiny amouts of Peyote as admixture (practice i learnt later is used to summon plant allies without neccesarily adding the chemical composition of allucinogens)…. I had never experienced a Temazcal before, nor had i experienced the effects of mixing different plant medicines for that matter.

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Visiting Sirius, Choosing Earth…. San Pedro and Ayahuasca Interaction

After about two months from my last journey, I was itching to return to the jungle and I had my opportunity when a small group was scheduled for late April. Everything seemed normal our first evening; My internal attitude however, was unlike any on my past experiences. I felt -for the first time – that I could go into this journey in total trust, as now I had come to know firsthand the love and benevolence of the spirit encountered when drinking Ayahuasca, my previous fears and insidious doubts had lifted completely…

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Aya Intervention. Im still here…

Seeking to deepen my relation with Aya I signed for a week-long retreat that also offered the opportunity to experience San Pedro (Huachuma Cactus) another sacred plant I didn’t know anything about until the retreat started, and I quickly realized I should have done my due diligence research. Some of the experienced participants shared what I should expect and this included: 8-16 hours journey, blending of dimensions, seen with eyes open and losing emotional control……By then I had heard enough and couldn’t help to have all my fears re-awakened. Every fear I had experienced before Aya, and more, came back to me…Among them, my biggest was encountering dark forces and the sleep paralysis  feeling of “dying from asphyxia” that often accompanied such encounters for me… These two fears -I was grateful-  had not manifested with Aya… and I was literally freaking out contemplating the possibility they may take place now experiencing San Pedro.

One hour before the first SP ceremony I needed to seek for organizers to let them know I didn’t feel ready and I couldn’t bring myself to it. I prayed and asked Aya to help me out and either give me the strength to go through this or give me the clarity to make a call and cancel this off if this was not right  for me… As soon as these thoughts entered my head I started hearing a VERY loud buzzing,  it did not came from anything outside but it was rather inside my head… It was the exact same sound I heard in all my previous Aya encounters right before the experience started… I had come to recognize this sound as a “hello I’ve arrived – I’m here”  message… Mind you however,  this time it was more than 42 hours since I had my last dose (of a rather disappointingly weak, no effects producing, Ayahuasca brew in this center in the mountains) so, this was absolutely not supposed to happen. I could not believe myself, it was the most surreal thing ever to happen to me the buzzing lasted for at least 5-8 minutes of loud clear, consistent and strong noise in my head….I knew she was there with me and was letting me know everything was alright, that She was just as active and alive working on me as if I had just drank a heavy jungle style dose just 20 mins ago. I felt so reassured  by this that my fears lifted. Beyond lifting current fears, this caused something even deeper, this gesture of hers, brought tears to my eyes and made me feel way more than just reassured… This was a ultimately cathartic moment for me; It was the very first time in my life that a being from the supernatural side had shown kindness and love to me… particularly when I have been paralyzed by fear… It  reminded me of the countless times growing up when I was attacked by visions of demons and entities and had prayed to God, the angels, and any “light beings” I could possibly think off to encounter no response, literally hundreds of times… the loneliness and guilt / shame for feeling abandoned by God for years had left strong marks on me. Now, having her show up in such an undeniable manner.. it moved me, it made me regain faith on the path and I was touched to levels I find hard to describe in this post…

The very exact same experience was to happen one more time the same week, the next time I found myself paralyzed by fear at the highlight event of the retreat, where we were supposed to confront complete darkness in a 7 hours sweat lodge under the influence of 3 medicines: Peyote, San Pedro and Ayahuasca. I asked again: are you there? And sure enough, about 20 mins before heading to it (and several days after my last Aya dose)  I got my answer.. the strong buzzing and the overwhelming love energy took over me once again for  5-8 eternal minutes while I cried alone in my room healing tears..  For the first time in a lifetime of encounters with the spirit world someone or somethins was on my side and I didnt feel alone …

Aya Speaks – visions, a female or male spirit?

The second ceremony night in this visit I experienced the same gentleness and lack of body symptoms, the wise voice made its appearance significantly earlier and I lost no time in presenting my  questions. Why do I hear you as a man when everybody else’s seems to identify you as a female? The voice responded shifting from male to a women’s voice: “Because you distrust women” before shifting back to a male presence and voice.

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The Discovery of the AfterGlow The Good and The Tricky……

The sense of connectedness, clarity and calm happiness continued during the next following weeks. This was something I did not expect, the shaman had only said please follow the diet for two weeks and the healing positive energies will remain with you…

I noticed significant changes in my overall mood, I was happy and contempt all the time with no specific reason.  I realized that I had been before in a chronic depression I wasn’t fully aware off until now having it been lifted, happines felt unusual.

One of the most telling symptom changes was that I did not need to forcefully occupy my day.  Before, I had a strong need to ensure I had activities planned like  shopping, banks, yoga, friends’ visits, and specific tasks for working in my art shop. Now, I was comfortable with not having plans, with letting the day unfold and just do whatever I pleased. I did not find staying in the house with no plans either boring or threatening anymore. I actually enjoyed moments of solitude and peace and just being on my own. I also started to feel a strong rejection towards crowded places (concerts, shopping malls in weekends, movie theaters in box opening days) I felt energetically affected by them and would avoid them at all cost, whereas before I would go to the movies every single weekend regardless of what was playing…

When I was able to consciously identify all these unexpected changes I was marveled, how could two nights alone have had such a profound healing impact? what were the possibilities? Having a history of observation and work in myself I carried a list of internal issues I would love to work on, among them: my inability to open my heart with my partner, phobia to spiders, rejection to my femininity, the list went on and on…  I wanted to do more work, to get deeper with it so I started to research about retreat healing centers in Ecuador and found one that offered 12 days San Pedro, Ayahuasca and Temazcal ceremonies, I signed up for it  however the next opportunity was two and a half months down the road. I couldn’t wait……

My 2 weeks diet ended almost (yeah I cheated breaking in 2 days early) on time for Christmas and Year Ends Celebrations which I spent in Guayaquil (8 hrs away form my new home in Quito). I felt happy and at ease around family and old friends…. which brings me to the “tricky” side of the afterglow. When I related my experience to family and friends I found unexpected responses, somehow my parents were very open to it, welcoming and supportive of it (???) … The shocker were some of my closest friends… they had been gracious in entertaining conversations regarding my initial curiosity and experience however they became increasingly concerned and judgmental when hearing of my determination to go back to it and go deeper in the work… Some of them became outright straight critical: “do you think you can drink your way to illumination?” “What do you seek? What else could you possibly want?” or just innocently questioning in a form of silent criticism “are you sure of these decisions?, You are not supposed to need anything external you know, everything is already inside you…” but I had no choice but to maintain my self-promise of radical truth living. These were hard moments for me as I have never taken criticism particularly well when coming from people I care about.. Aya, however had a lesson in store for me. It felt like a second layer of shedding, after having left my whole life in Canada just a couple of months ago.  I was now witnessing the distancing and shedding of my old friends as well, physical distance did not make the difference here, it was now a matter of vibrational distance… I didn’t know yet that feeling lonely and missunderstood would not last for long…