If you have completed the first stage of your Ayahuasca journey and already decided to attend a retreat in Ayahuasca motherland, there are a few guidelines that you should follow in order to make the most of your experience. Once you already took the bold step towards the unknown lands and into your soul, then you might as well do anything in your power to receive the most of that endeavour.
From our experience at Pachamama and from receiving numerous questions from our Guests, we have compiled for you a set of guidelines which, if approached correctly, will take your Ayahuasca ceremonies to the next level.
- DIET: There is a lot of contradictory information on pre/post Ayahuasca diet and one can only get lost in all the online material on this matter. Diet advice varies from restricting most of the foods from your daily menu, to those suggesting that Ayahuasca diet is a Westerners’ invention and irrelevant for the success of ceremonies. We are aware that all people are individually designed and there cannot be a unified formula that “fits all”, nevertheless, the diet aspect goes beyond keeping our body clean for the Plant Teacher. We have witnessed people who had meaningful Ayahuasca ceremonies without fully respecting the diet, however, it is definitely advisable to follow the diet guidelines for your own benefit. From the biology point of view: the cleaner your body is, the clearer the path for the Medicine to perform her magic. Apart from having your body vessel clean, there is another, more important aspect of diet and that is the spiritual one: fasting will put you in a proper mind set and this small “indulgency sacrifice” will be a symbol of your respect respect to the power of the Medicine. Controlling your habits and taste buds as a part of the preparation will not only clean your body, but also set your mind in a respectful attitude towards Ayahuasca and realising why it is called The Medicine. Afterall, fasting has been a faithful catalyst of most spiritual practices. If asking guidance from wisdom of Mother Ayahuasca, restricting our diet for two weeks is the least that we can do.
- EXPECTATIONS: Ayahuasca is a mighty architect and the spectrum of her design goes way beyond our understanding. Knowing this, we must accept that nothing is certain except one thing: No two experiences are the same! Expectations come as a by-product of reading or listening to other people’s experiences and, although it might be useful to prepare yourself for what might/might not come, expectations can only lead to disappointment! Empty your mind from unnecessary predictions, as we can assure you, Ayahausca forecasts are never correct! Drop your mind designs and always remember that you will receive exactly what you need!
- INTENTIONS: It is very important to distinguish expectations from intentions. Intentions are necessary and they are the driving force that lead us far beyond our comfort zones to interact with our higher selves. Take a moment before you sip down the brew and ask for her gentle guidance, clarification and help with any matter that needs assistance from higher realms. And then simply let go. You are dealing with entities far beyond our comprehension and letting go is the best you can do.
- SURRENDER: Most people find this to be the hardest aspect of Ayahuasca ceremonies as our minds tend to interfere with Ayahuasca on all possible levels! Best way to deal with this is to approach your Ayahuasca ceremony as a very intimate movie projection. This projection will connect you to your higher self and expand your consciousness, but if your mind starts playing another projection on top of the screen, then the interference will disturb your image and as a result, the visions will be unclear and you might end up not being able to distinguish a genuine Ayahuasca message from your mind meddling. Pre-ceremony meditations and silencing your mind in general will help you surrender a bit more, and as much as we are aware that it is not easy, try to give way to higher wisdom as much as possible.
- PURGE: Purging can happen as a part of your ceremony but is not necessary and definitely not essential. The only thing that you need to know about purging is: If you are meant to purge, you will purge! We have witnessed so many people wasting their ceremonies waiting for the stuff to come out. If you catch yourself being focused on the purge for quite some time, just gently go back to the ceremony as this “expecting to purge mode” will prevent you from receiving important messages from Ayahuasca. If you really feel that there is a blockage and you need help to release through purging, a blow of Mapacho tobacco or rape might expedite the process for you. Other than that, just try not to hug to your empty bucket entire ceremony as you will miss on important communication with Ayahuasca.
- TRUST THE PLACE/FACILITATORS/SHAMAN: With so many Ayahausca retreats emerging daily, choosing the right one has become the most challenging part. There is no particular advice on this subject apart from simply following your intuition. Listen to that inner voice that is telling you to go/not go certain direction as that voice will always guide you towards your highest good. It is very important that the retreat you choose makes you feel safe and cared for, otherwise you will not be able to properly receive your experience. Ayahuasca retreats are often life-changing adventures and many people have rated their Ayahausca experience as one of the most important events of their life! Your journey deserves proper research and the retreat should cater to your needs. If you “do not click” with one of the facilitators (which is understandable as we are all just humans) it is perfectly fine to express your feelings. There should always be an alternative and you should be granted this freedom. The connection with different Maestros will vary from person to person, but it is of utmost importance that you trust in their plant knowledge, good intentions and genuine desire to heal. Having doubts in your healer will be a tremendous obstacle towards your healing and should be avoided in any way possible. Indigenous peoples were born and raised in a completely different world and opening your mind and heart is the best tool you can bring with you to an Ayahausca retreat. Offer them your trust and understanding and their icaros will reflect back the good vibes you are sending out!
- ATTITUDE: None of the above will serve you unless you approach this higher Entity with unconditional respect! Staying humble and aware that you will receive whatever this superior intelligence has prepared for you is of utmost importance and a good attitude is the most important attribute of your journey! Ayahuasca is all about subtle energies and unless you radiate respect and leave no space for doubt or scepticism, there is little chance in receiving a deep healing.
- GENUINE DESIRE TO HEAL AND LET GO: And last but definitely not least, you need to be ready to receive healing and that means, ready to let go. Old patterns are not easy to let go for as much as they don’t serve us, they have accompanied us all our lives and we got accustomed to them. Ayahuasca will show you what does not serve your higher purpose, but you need to be genuinely ready to leave old patterns behind and start anew. Ayahuasca will be your guide and show you the way, but the walk is up to you.
We sincerely hope that the above will help our fellow soul explorers to get the most of their Ayahuasca odyssey. The above guidelines are a very condensed version on the topic of Ayahausca and each of the aspects could be further discussed with no end, but if you are able to follow these simple protocols, you will definitely receive many blessings from Mother Ayahuasca’s vast wisdom.