PREPARING FOR AYAHUASCA HEALING
When Ayahuasca appears in our lives there is often a mysterious feeling of being called to explore this ancient medicine path. Somewhere within our body or our soul there is an unexplainable intuition that here is something that may hold real insight for us and the potential for genuine renewal in our life.
But how to prepare for this experience? As we have been educated to do in our Western approach to learning, many feel inclined to research Ayahuasca - either online or in books, or by talking with others - to discover something about others' experiences with the medicine and to anticipate what our own experience may be like.
At Caya Shobo we encourage you to take your own experience. With our many years of working with Ayahuasca, we have observed one consistent truth - that Ayahuasca is a unique experience and the spiritual path is a unique journey for each individual. No one person can tell you what will be your journey with Ayahuasca or the other Master Plants. You must make your own passage.
The Shipibo people say that Ayahuasca reflects to us the reality of ourselves - she is a powerful master spirit that brings up all the bad and all the good within us - within our bodies, our minds and our spirits. The Maestros, with their advanced knowledge, then help us clean away the bad and clarify and enhance the good. The experience of the Ayahuasca Ceremony itself, as described here in more detail, is a mysterious and personal adventure that no-one can fully predict.
Having said that, there are important steps we can and must take to prepare our bodies and our minds for the experience of Ayahuasca Ceremony and for the path of healing with the other medicine plants.
When requesting a stay at Caya Shobo, you will be asked to provide detailed information regarding your medical, physical and mental health history before your reservation is confirmed.
If you would like to take a few minutes now to fill in our medical questionnaire online, we will let you know our recommendations for preparing to visit Caya Shobo to participate in Ayahuasca ceremony or master plant dieta.
Caya Shobo offers comprehensive treatment for a wide range of health concerns. However certain physical and mental conditions and/or pharmaceutical medications or substances may inhibit your eligibility to drink Ayahuasca and/or other medicine plants, and some guests may require a specific preparation plan for treatment.
To ensure your safety and the safety of others, and to obtain the maximum possible benefit from your treatment at Caya Shobo, it is critical that you provide comprehensive and detailed information in your medical form.
General Dietary Restrictions
It is necessary to follow certain food restrictions during the time you are participating in Ayahuasca Ceremony and while taking the prescribed Dieta Plants, as well as certain restrictions regarding social behaviour and private relationships.
Consuming red meats, salt, dairy, citrus and other acids, sugar and sweeteners, and other products, can not only disrupt and delay the healing of the patient, but in many cases can produce undesired effects. For this reason, in this medicine tradition, the discipline with respect to Dieta restrictions is of vital importance.
For at least 10 days before and during your visit to Caya Shobo it is essential that you observe a restricted diet of:
No marijuana or any other drugs whatsoever. If you are required to take medications it is imperative that you inform Caya Shobo before your arrival of the name of your medication/s and your daily dosages.
No salt or very salty foods. (Vegetables naturally high in sodium, like celery, are ok.)
No vinegars, lemon juice or other highly acidic foods (eg kombucha, mayonnaise, pickled foods, etc).
No pork or red meat. (Chicken or fish is ok.)
No spicy food - such as chilli, curry, hot sauce, etc
No dairy - milk, cheese, yoghurt. (Eggs are ok.)
No sugar or sweeteners.
Avoid fried and oily foods.
Most natural supplements are ok, but avoid natural supplements that are very potent (such as Oregano Oil) or highly acidic (such as Vitamin C) or that affect brain chemistry (such as St John’s Wort).
It is also recommended to avoid all aged and fermented foods including miso, tofu, smoked fish, etc.
In most cases retreat in solitude and sexual abstinence also take on crucial importance during the treatment.
During your menstruation you will will be asked to take rest from the Ceremony and not enter the Maloka. While menstruating we recommend that you focus on making connection with your Dieta plants in quiet meditation.
Integration of Ayahuasca Healing
At Caya Shobo
The experience of Ayahuasca retreat in the Amazon, with quiet time in nature and the peaceful ambience of the jungle, clean food and daily Dieta treatments with medicine plants, brings us to an extremely cleansed and highly sensitive mental and energetic state. The stark contrast with the regular world when we initiate our return journey and become re-immersed in the responsibilities of our job, our family situation, the city environment, etc, can be a really intense shock.
To ease the journey home and minimize the loss of connection with the experience and the healing which you received during your time at Caya Shobo we always recommend staying a couple of extra days after Ceremony to re-ground and receive guidance and counsel from our experienced facilitators on how best to re-enter your day-to-day life. A slow re-integration to the world and to daily living in terms of food choices, activities, social behaviour and general mental patterns is key to obtaining the most benefit possible from your time in the jungle.
Another vital part of the healing process is psychological support to help you interpret and integrate the powerful healing experiences with Ayahuasca Ceremony and with the medicine plants. In this path of healing many difficult and confusing experiences, thoughts and visions may arise and can invoke feelings of fear, pain, sadness, anger, confusion and uncertainty, particularly for a Western educated mind where our rationality and ego-based control patterns can be our worst enemies.
During your stay at Caya Shobo you will have opportunity to meet with our experienced facilitators and our Maestros in private or in group session. Seeking guidance with humility from those with years of practice in this path and from the Shipibo Maestros who hold a very different way of thinking and perceiving life, can be very helpful in showing you how to walk the path of healing with love and forgiveness, and peaceful confidence in your heart and mind.
Ayahuasca retreat at Caya Shobo can have a hugely transformative impact in your life and often inspires the making of important decisions for positive change, which were not possible before. Such changes, which ultimately can be very favorable to your life can also be challenging or bring stress, not only for yourself but for family too, and potentially your circle of friends.
Our facilitators are available after your departure from Caya Shobo (by phone or Skype) to provide ongoing guidance in helping you to make positive, well-considered choices for your life in a loving and balanced way. Transformation is ok, but always with love.