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The Basics of Ayahuasca | Plant Medicine Ceremony

Ceremony, Healing, Rituals, ShamanismChloë RainComment
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One must feel called — not pressured — to participate in a plant medicine ceremony. They must be ready to make a change in their physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual lives by applying what they have learned during their ceremony, meaning that these plant medicines are to be taken seriously, with great intention, and not dosed recreationally. One must also be ready to completely surrender to the plant and let it take them where they need to go; the plant spirit always knows exactly what one most needs to see, feel, hear, experience, and thus, learn.

Since these plants are so powerful, they are oftentimes looked at by shamanic cultures as Spiritual beings. Many common shamanic plant medicines include, but are certainly not limited to: Ayahuasca, Iboga, San Pedro cactus, psychedelic mushrooms (though not exactly a plant), Salvia, and Peyote cactus.

To give a brief overview and an example of what a plant medicine ceremony is, we will discuss the most currently popular of these plant medicines, Ayahuasca.

Ayahuasca

Unlike any other sacred plant medicine, Ayahuasca is comprised of two separate plants: the chacruna leaf (Psychotria viridis) and the Ayahuasca vine (Banisteriopsis caapi). Alone, neither of these plants produce medicinal nor entheogenic properties. However, when combined, they work together and become a very powerful and sacred medicine.

Both of these plants are found in the Amazon rainforest in South America. Astonishingly, in this particular rainforest, there are over 80,000 cataloged leafy plant species. Yet, somehow, the psychopharmacologists of the Amazon (the shamanic healers) knew exactly which two unsuspecting plant species would create such a magical and psychoactive medicine when combined.

The history of Ayahuasca use dates so far back that anthropologists and researchers have yet been able to trace its origins; however, the shamans claim that the plants, themselves, told them during a Middle World shamanic journey.

The plants are collected from the jungle and brewed into a sacred tea. The tea, when taken ceremonially, throws open the gates to the spirit realm and reveals mystical, non-ordinary worlds that are unperceivable in ordinary consciousness.

Currently, the use of this brew has positively evolved to reach more and more people; now, any interested person can experience the extraordinary healing power of Ayahuasca.

Unfortunately, many Western cultures have yet been able to fully understand the healing and medicinal properties of this unique plant substance. For that, it is illegal in many countries. Yet, it is not only legal but highly praised in it’s birthplace: the Amazonian countries of Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Bolivia, and Brazil. In these countries, foreigners have the opportunity to partake in an Ayahuasca ceremony with a trained shaman.

It is during these ceremonies that participants are able to face the root causes of their physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual illnesses head-on and delve deep into the healing process by allowing the spirit of Ayahuasca to take them on a journey to these realms of non-ordinary consciousness. Within these realms, deep-seeded issues that have long been hidden within one’s subconscious mind are revealed to them.

Mother Ayahuasca, as the plant spirit is often referred to (due to it’s feminine and mother-like qualities), will always teach the participant precisely what they most need to learn in order to fully, truly heal themselves.

An Ayahuasca Ceremony

As specific traditions within Ayahuasca ceremonies will vary from shaman to shaman, these following customs generally remain the same:

Preparation — Ayahuasca diet

Ayahuasca is a total spirit, mind, and body cleanse; for that, a special diet (or dieta, as it is commonly referred to in South America), is required.

Usually, during the first half of a ceremony, there is a fair amount of purging; from either or both ends. This is because Ayahuasca is purifying the physical body of heavy energy before it moves on to mental, emotional, and spiritual body purification.

A great way to lesson, or, in some cases, completely avoid, the purging process is to begin the purification process the week before the ceremony. Specific dietas vary, but usually require one to abstain from sex, drugs, alcohol, pork, coffee, and chocolate. In some cases, dietas even require the absence of salt, meat, spice, and sugar.

If the diet is followed properly, one is sure to reap the benefits soon after the tea is ingested. Plus, it is considered respectful to follow a dieta prior to sitting in Ayahuasca Ceremony.

The Ceremony

Each shaman has their own personal way of setting up the ceremonial area. However, ceremonies are typically held just after sunset in a safe, relaxing, and comfortable environment, most notably within high energy places on the land.

Authentic and safe ceremonies, are small groups of participants, 2 to 7, and one shaman and their apprentices sit during a ceremony, all of whom ingest the brew. The shaman creates a very open and safe space by setting up an altar, and playing soothing music. He or she will also clear and protect the energy of the space by filling the room of, and blowing onto the crown each participant, a form of sacred tobacco called “Mapacho,” as pictured above.

Then, the shaman suggests that each person set an intention for their journey, whether that be to surface past wounds or to learn self-love. The group then prays together and gives thanks to Mother Ayahuasca.

Finally, one by one, each participant drinks the brew and begins to journey. . .

Once the medicine kicks in, the shaman will begin to sing icaros, or shaman songs, which help to intensify the medicine and further protect the energy of the room.

The Return

Ayahuasca typically lasts around 5 hours. As everyone in the ceremony begins to return to waking, conscious reality, the shaman will again use Mapacho to clear the energy of the space and ground each individual.

The floor will then be open for sharing and heartfelt communion.

Afterward, each participant can personally discuss their experience with the shaman, who will then help to integrate their experience to this physical reality and provide advice on how to incorporate their newly discovered wisdom into their lives for optimal healing.


Natasha Wanderly | Writer

Natasha is a happy no-mad with a love for living lucidly, dancing with fire, and talking to strangers. From living with Shamans in the Amazon to studying ancient hieroglyphs in Egypt, she is always on some type of adventure. Her mission is to connect with many hearts, walk in many shoes, and help people to understand their value. Every day, she wakes up with two goals: 1.) Be here 2.) Be love.

Please connect with her at www.lucidadventures.com

This article was originally published on the MindValley blog : Shamanic Healing: What Is Shamanism And How Can It Heal You? and was edited and republished with the Author's permission.


 
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Chloë Rain is the Founder of Explore Deeply and the Explore Deeply Movement. She is a Spiritual Guide & Shamanic Practitioner.

Chloë has had the pleasure of working with women and men all over the globe to learn to source their inner power, deepen their relationship to self love, and experience greater fulfillment by answering their calling, so they can enjoy the happiness they have always wanted, and have confidence and JOY in their lives, relationships, and finances.

Many of her clients find that their relationships and careers shift dramatically in new and exciting ways after doing this work, creating freedom and joy in their personal and professional lives. To find out more about working with Chloë go → here.

Please feel free to share content freely from Explore Deeply™. However, please be courteous and link back to the original post, and credit Explore Deeply as well as the writer where applicable. I hope you find many resources here to serve you as you walk your path of purpose. Much love!

Five Beautiful Rituals to Celebrate Summer Solstice

Ceremony, Rituals, Spiritual SignificanceGuest Writer

Summer solstice 2018 in the Northern Hemisphere will be at 6:07 AM EST on Thursday June 21, 2018.

Summer Solstice Rituals

The Solstice signifies the time when Mother Earth is at the fullness of her strength, fertility, and abundance, so we too can celebrate the strength in joining together, pollinate our spiritual consciousness through sharing, and becoming ceremonies of thanksgiving for the abundance that which we experience daily.

Creating a ceremony or celebration is a way for humans to give back to Creation some of the energy and blessings that we are always receiving. Mother Earth constantly provides for all of us with her incredible bounty, and the Sun’s warmth provides the light necessary for all living beings to thrive and prosper.

The Summer Solstice is a time to reflect on the growth of the season. Seeds are planted in the Earth as well as the seeds of our souls. It’s a time of cleansing and renewal, a time of Love and growth. This is the moment of our year when there is the most LIGHT available to us. In terms of consciousness, it is when we are the most present to ourselves and who we know ourselves to be --- the Sun represents the “I am” consciousness.

The word “Solstice” is derived from the Latin words Sol+systere, meaning “Sun”+ “standing still.”  The Summer Solstice is the longest day and the shortest night of the year. Following this Solstice, the days get shorter, the nights longer.

Fire is used symbolically throughout summer solstice celebrations in praise of the sun, to bring luck and to ward off the darkness.  And the spiral is also a symbol associated with the Solstices. Ancient dances would follow the Sun’s movement like a spiral, people joined hands weaving through the streets, winding into a decreasing spiral into the middle then unwinding back out again. The Sun moving from contraction at the center of the spiral at winter solstice to expansion at Summer Solstice and back again. Festivals in North still continue to dance and play, holding hands in formation of a spiral.

Many traditions throughout time have celebrated the Solstices — Ancient Egypt, and Aztecs of Mexico, Chinese, Chumash Indians of California, Indigenous Europeans. And western civilizations have for centuries celebrated this first day of summer often called Midsummer (see Shakespeare), or St. John’s Day. The Chinese mark the day by honoring Li, the Chinese Goddess of Light. Throughout history, with so much light being showered upon the Earth on this day, it’s been known as one of the most powerful days of the year for spiritual growth and healing.

Summer Solstice Stone Hedge

To this day, revellers still gather at Stonehenge to see the sun rise. The Heel Stone and Slaughter Stone, set outside the main circle, align with the rising sun.  And many of the ancient traditions continue - Bonfires are still lit to celebrate the Sun at its height of power and to ask the Sun not to withdraw into winter darkness.

In North America, many Native American tribes held ritual dances to honor the sun. The Sioux were known to hold one of the most spectacular rituals- The Sun Dance. Usually performed during the June solstice, preparations for the Sun Dance included cutting and raising a tree that would be considered a visible connection between the heavens and Earth, and setting up teepees in a circle to represent the cosmos. Participants abstained from food and drink during the dance itself. Their bodies were decorated in the symbolic colors of red (sunset), blue (sky), yellow (lightning), white (light), and black (night).

 

Some rituals to celebrate Summer Solstice:

1)  As our ancestors did, celebrate by gathering of plants and healing herbs, its long been believed that they are at their most potent today. Five common Celtic sacred plants associated with Midsummer are St. John’s Wort, Vervain, Yarrow, Fern, and Mugwort.

2)  Gather with others to create a circle or spiral.  Exchange songs, stories, and poems with others.  Dance, drum and celebrate.

3) Create a Sun Wheel or mandala (a symbol of the circle of life and connectedness) made from flowers or things found in nature.

4) Keep a sacred fire burning. You can create a big fire like a bonfire to celebrate with friends, but even a small fire, in the form of a candle or Altar of Light can be just as potent.

5) Make a Prayer Stick or Prayer Tree and place specific prayers for those who need healing on it. Make a prayer for the return to peace where there is no peace, for abundance in areas of the world where there is now poverty and scarcity.

Do all or any of the above with an intention for something that you will do to improve life –  bring light and love into this world in your own creative way and begin to carry it out.

Wishing you abundance and ligh this Summer Solstice!


As the Sun spirals its longest Dance
Cleanse Us
As nature shows bounty and fertility
Bless Us
Let all things live with loving intent
And to fulfill their truest destiny
summer solstice 2016

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Chloë Rain is the Founder of Explore Deeply and the Explore Deeply Movement. She is a Spiritual Guide & Shamanic Practitioner.

Chloë has had the pleasure of working with women and men all over the globe to learn to source their inner power, deepen their relationship to self love, and experience greater fulfillment by answering their calling, so they can enjoy the happiness they have always wanted, and have confidence and JOY in their lives, relationships, and finances.

Many of her clients find that their relationships and careers shift dramatically in new and exciting ways after doing this work, creating freedom and joy in their personal and professional lives. To find out more about working with Chloë go → here.

Please feel free to share content freely from Explore Deeply™. However, please be courteous and link back to the original post, and credit Explore Deeply as well as the writer where applicable. I hope you find many resources here to serve you as you walk your path of purpose. Much love!

Why I give a F*&@ about Valentines Day

Healing, Rituals, Rose Ceremony, VideoChloë Rain1 Comment
The Meaning of Valentines Day
You cannot make someone love you. You can only make yourself someone who can be loved.

Valentine's Day is one of my favorite holidays. Though Valentine's Day has some interesting history and context in our modern world, I've always loved the sentiment of celebrating LOVE and the coming of spring.

I know many people consider this a "Hallmark Holiday" but for me, it has always meant something more than that... as a child of a parent who battled with seasonal depression, the February holiday always seemed to be a happier time than the previous holidays of winter. My mother and I would spend time making handmade Valentines out of colored construction paper, and bedazzle them with red glitter, hearts, and gold ink. She taught me how to make heart shaped cakes by using a round cake pan and cutting the circle in half and baking a square cake pan and fusing them together with homemade icing.

 {This is one of my Handmade Valentines, and homemade Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, in a pink glitter oyster pail made for one of my best friends.}

{This is one of my Handmade Valentines, and homemade Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, in a pink glitter oyster pail made for one of my best friends.}

Even as an adult I still enjoy making handmade Valentines and giving them to people I care about and Valentines marks one on my own personal turning points in my life when I decided that I was going to change my world and learn to let more love in. (I talk about that in the video below.)

St. Valentine's day shares the same date as Lupercalia, a very ancient festival, observed on February 13 through 15 to clear bad spirits and purify, releasing health and fertility.

Lupercalia subsumed Februa, an earlier-origin spring cleansing ritual held on the same date, which gives the month of February (Februarius) its name.

Take time to watch the video below to learn why ritual is important in your life & how to make Valentine's Day Special for you regardless of your love life. Plus I share one of my most favorite energetic tools to bring more love into your life!

Use it to feel, receive, and have more LOVE in your life! IN-JOY! 

Why I give an F*&# about Valentine's Day, and maybe why You should, too. Plus a energetic tool to use to feel, receive, and have more love in your life!


Now is a great time for emotional cleansing as we prepare for spring, sometimes a little help and support can go along way. Join one of my 21 Emotional Dextox and cleansing programs today and receive 21 days of daily healing prayer and easy to follow through tips and tools to raise your vibration and welcome in the new.

Debt Release : Forgiveness

21 Day Self-Guided Journey to Love Programs:

21 Days of support for $21

Learn more about the programs:

Chloë Rain is the Founder of Explore Deeply and the Explore Deeply Movement. She is a Spiritual Guide & Shamanic Practitioner.

Chloë has had the pleasure of working with women and men all over the globe to learn to source their inner power, deepen their relationship to self love, and experience greater fulfillment by answering their calling, so they can enjoy the happiness they have always wanted, and have confidence and JOY in their lives, relationships, and finances.

Many of her clients find that their relationships and careers shift dramatically in new and exciting ways after doing this work, creating freedom and joy in their personal and professional lives. To find out more about working with Chloë go → here.

Please feel free to share content freely from Explore Deeply™. However, please be courteous and link back to the original post, and credit Explore Deeply as well as the writer where applicable. I hope you find many resources here to serve you as you walk your path of purpose. Much love!