One can often hear Ayahuasca being stigmatized and (mis)used in the context of psychedelic drugs. We are all quite familiar with how the brew is made and what chemical compounds it contains, but what is the purpose of drinking Ayahuasca, what is the proper way of defining it and finally – Is Ayahuasca a drug?

We witness times when all the information is just a click away, however, there is still a veil of taboos when Ayahuasca is “on the menu” and many ambiguities and contradictory definitions arise surrounding the notorious brew, often categorizing it as a drug. For something to be labelled and classified into a specific category, it must first satisfy certain parameters. In the case of drugs, the criteria are as follows:

1. Creating a chemical or physiological addiction;

2. Resulting in “downs” shortly after intake;

3. Creating a reduce in dopamine/serotonin production.

A contrary to all the aforementioned attributes, ayahuasca resets and rewires our entire body and psyche and does not reflect any of the above. Furthermore, Ayahuasca has been proved to balance our brain’s chemistry and thus increase the production of the “happy hormones”. In order to keep Ayahuasca in the domain of medicine, a term was coined in 1979 as a replacement for the terms hallucinogen and psychedelic and Ayahuasca was defined as an entheogen. The word derives from two words of ancient Greek: entheos (full of the God; root of the English word enthusiasm) and genesthai (to come into being). If we make a simple formula it comes to quite self-explanatory results, all variables and nuances of the same:

 Full of God + To come into being 

= Generating the Divine within

= That which generates God within a person

= Having God (Theos) within

= God or Spirit facilitating.

Once we have established that Ayahuasca is a God facilitating substance and the purpose of Her intake is reserved only for the domain of transcendental experiences in service of healing and reaching the Divine within, why confuse Her with a psychedelic drug? Spiritual growth, awakening, enlightenment, ego dissolving pathway to wholeness, cathartic and esoteric journey towards the light, all referring to awakening the God within, is everybody’s equal birth right. Ayahuasca is often referred to as a “map with the shortcut” but what does it really mean to take a shortcut on this spiritual path from point A to point B and is there such a thing as a shortcut on this journey we have all embarked on?

This quest is definitely not a race, nobody but ourselves to compete with and nobody to measure our time or acceleration. It is a point in time and space where we all belong and are headed to. We have been given the freedom of choosing our vehicles, roads and companions on this path. Some will travel together, some will be lonely riders. Some prefer the fast highway while some will take the old bumpy road by the sea and bask in the view. Nobody ever said that there are right and wrong ways of getting from A to B. All the religious books lead to same conclusions and, in a direct or more subtle and metaphorical way, indicate that we are all one with God and everything we do should lead to getting us closer to our “Oneness.” Taking that into consideration, how can any of the means we use to get there, be attributed as right or wrong? Once you have successfully passed an exam, does it really matter how you mastered the subject? Does it matter if you studied diligently and regularly every day or you learned the whole book two days prior? It really does not matter, does it? The knowledge has been adopted and the exam successfully passed. The right approach to Ayahuasca is the key ingredient in successful healing. If we want to create a space for Ayahuasca to shine, we should strive to eliminate approaching it as an illegal psychedelic, “the exotic highest high”, “the ultimate drug” or the “wrong way” to enlightenment. There is and will never be such a thing as a wrong way to enlightenment which makes the phrase per se an oxymoron i.e. a statement that contradicts itself. Sapienti sat.[1]

All spiritual epiphanies are equally important, no matter how they manifested, and all spiritual disciplines are only tools to achieve such states of consciousness.

Isn’t it remarkable and simply overwhelming that we were born at times when healing and higher states of consciousness are known and available to us in such ways that just a couple generations ago were beyond imaginable. That out of the whole existence of time and space, of human kind and Universe, we ARE at the space in time when an opportunity to awaken is not reserved for just a privileged handful of individuals. It is our birth right and now is the time to claim it.



  • [1] Latin proverb translated as: To the wise is enough; enough said; nothing further needs to be said.