I am often being asked about the difference between experiencing medicine at the source in the jungle and doing samas with native tribes (dieta with plants) versus the experience of the medicine around the world, usually served in a quick weekend or week-long retreats. A complex question, but just take a look at that video, tap into it, and you might just sense the difference right away.
Nothing wrong with the second option, especially for all those who can’t travel far, or have other commitments, or as an introduction to the vast, endless realm of plant-based medicinal work, but for me personally, the full symbiosis with the Motherland of the Mother, the direct contact with indigenous people, the multi-layered, never-ending, cacophonic trance sound of the jungle, the energy of that mind-resetting setting, can only enrich the overall experience, bring it to another level, allowing the connection to bloom and contributes to the deeper understanding of the potency of plant-based medicine and its global phenomenon, adding a whole new layer of work for me – a mission to fight for its tradition and roots and to bring the voice of the indigenous people and the jungle – the voice of Nimea Kaya – to the public, as heard by the campfire in their village.
To be exposed to their words and craft brought me, literally speaking, to a whole new dimension.
If you are really, really called by the medicine or you consider yourself to be on a path and you only have capacity and space in your life to travel to the source and meet the medicine in her kingdom, meet folks who mastered their medcinal crafts through generations of hard, deep and dedicated work, then please allow yourself that gift of life-changing experience and do it. Do it with respect and open space to invite the best the jungle has to offer to its patient student. There is so much there to learn from how they approach the medicine (See: Just another family gathering).
I personally find it a little pretentious, if not slightly imprudent to hear (or to think) “oh, I can have the same experience in with non-natives, somewhere in the middle of Europe” or to even hear ridiculous claims that “Ayahuasca originates from Slavic culture” (Yes, I am not making this up) etc, especially when claimed by those, who have never met people behind the art of jungle medicinal work. Please disable your ego and appreciate years and generations of the indigenous folks and traditions that brought us all to this very point, where we can now collectively and freely use the tools introduced to us by the generations of the indigenous pharmacists, shamans and wisdom keepers. This has to be noted and appreciated.
Again, the native inhabitants of the jungle, people whose mind-twisting, frankly saying and often impossible for us westerners to imagine, connection to nature allowed them to convert their rainforest-yard into one the most amazing, humane friendly and extremely potent natural pharmacy on the planet. This achievement is spectacular, mind-blowing!
It is a privilege and honour to learn from their wisdom and very healthy to be humble about it. They achieved that thousands of years ago without any advanced chemical tools or reagents, without chemical tables and professional equipment, but because they allowed themselves to truly connect to nature, to feel and to decode her messages. Did I mention it’s simply a spectacular achievement?
So they just did. They just listened to nature. They devoted to her wisdom. They are her descendants in the first line. This connection is now encoded in their blood. It also flows in our veins but we need to perform few more efforts, in my humble opinion, to achieve a level of connection to the nature that we can even fit the comparable spectrum of analysis.
No matter what is your tool of personal or spiritual expansion, for the benefit of your work, and for general health and safety of those who come fresh to this field, and to avoid spreading disinformation, please chose your teachers, your books and the information you are exposing yourself to with grace and respect to its origins. They were here before you and future generations will benefit from them as much as you are at the moment.
Your health and life energy are sacred and they deserve this act of self-kindness. It also requires a solid education, that of anthropological, cultural and historical nature as well.
The wisdom and connection to nature of the natives are unimaginable and to think we can achieve the same depth of symbiosis in just a blink of an eye after few sessions with this and that plant is nothing but a blinding ego game. The joy, and healthy aspect, is to explore this arcana of ancient wisdom with grace, learn as much as you can from many cultures with profound respect to their native traditions and identity, devote and dedicate yourself to see the bigger picture of this complex and vast phenomenon and please educate yourself with facts and history. Go and ask natives if you have doubts or wondering what is the medicine’s true nature, pun intended.
I wish you all to soak in the beauty and jollity of your inner work with compassion and understanding of its roots and I thank all the indigenous people, all traditions and medicine people I have met on my path and learn from for their profound work and input into healing of this planet for their enthralling connection with mother nature and ability to learn from them..
Working with medicine is not a race.
Take your pace.
Step by step.
Leaf by leaf.