Updated: Oct 23, 2020
As I closed my eyes, the smell of copal blanco filled the room. There were flowers and crystals laid as offerings at each entrance of the Osho Hall. My hands touched the cool marble floor, and I could feel the sense of sacred space where about 100 people would take a journey with the ayahuasca medicine. There was a warm wind blowing through the trees and the insects’ ever present tone kept the rhythm of my heart beating softly. “How did I get here?” I thought, in the melody of a song that begins with those words. A question I asked myself often on these days of solo travel.
There were countless decisions that brought me here, but the main one, the one to turn my life upside down was made months before; the decision to leave the life I once knew. A sweet life, in a cozy yellow house with a white picket fence steps to the beach, my boyfriend and dog, the 9-5 job. There were times when I wanted to return to that safety net, but now there was no turning back. I was on a mission of self discovery through the exploration of the world around me, the culture, and coming in tune with my most authentic self through experience. A solo time, where I would not be defined by the standard life I found myself in. I needed to find out what else I was made of and what else was out there.
Echoes of memories, fantasies of the future, and the continuation of coming back into presence swirled around my monkey mind as Portuguese medicine music beat along my ear drums. The guides would continue to play all throughout the night as a way to ground the journey; to have something to come back to if you strayed too far.
It felt like an initiation. To be with all these people embarking on an inward journey with the medicine. It was my third night since arriving to Pachamama. I was diving in, so to speak. Something was telling me to just go for it. It was as if the universe was conspiring in my favor to take these steps towards transformation. I had been calling ayahuasca in for awhile, and suddenly the opportunity presented itself. I had to take it.
Shedding layers of the self throughout this long night in the Osho hall, one main glimpse of realization came through to me from the spirit of the medicine: To cleanse the vessel of physical and emotional toxicity in order to become a clear channel for spirit to work through. This was the message I received. This was not the first time I had used entheogenic substances and had a spiritual experience, but it was the first time I had received cosmic downloads from a source outside of myself.
As I came back from the long journey within, so the day began. The golden rays of the early morning sun danced across the evergreen jungle as did all the beautiful souls dressed in white.
The medicine of ayahuasca worked through me as a purification and detoxification process initiating me on a journey of self healing so that I could be a clear vessel for spirit to work through me. I have also had ceremony with Peyote and San Pedro. This grounding medicine helped me to face my fears and darkness instilling the wisdom that the light always returns.
These words can basically sum up my experience, although there are many layers and intricacies to these journeys. Of course each person encounters the medicine differently and each time one does can open more doorways of perception making the unconscious conscious. I believe I will meet the medicine on my path again one day, and in turn it will reveal more insights and create new pathways of ascension.
Diving into spiritual community the way I did, I lost everything that I identified with. I chose this. I unraveled into a blank canvas and I was seeking anything to spill into my being. Physical transformation was the only way I believed I could feel anything significant. Plant medicine, sweat lodge, body cleanse, breath work. I put myself through these experiences because I wanted to come out the other side changed. Fear was not even a question. I just felt it all had to be done, whatever came my way. Of course, I did see some initial changes, but nothing was truly profound as I thought it would be. And as time went on, some old habitual patterns would arise, and I would think how I did all that and what has come of it? And I remember people saying it takes time to integrate the medicine.
Here I am, after all my soul searching, shedding layers of the past, of who I thought I was. In the present moment, true self is emerging, and carrying these pearls of wisdom from that time. I can see now. I can see how the integration is emerging. It has been. It is a process. It doesn’t just happen overnight. The growth happens over time. It is the ripple effect. It's like when you get a sunburn. Sometimes you don’t really know when its happening and then all of a sudden you feel your skin on fire! We don’t always see things as they are. New eyes come in time.