Anna McGregor's Reviews
I have recently completed a two weeks retreat at the Pachamama temple in Pucallpa, Peru and would like to share my experience which was, needless to say, life changing. The place itself is one with no ego, with facilitators and shamans that perfectly fit into that frame. Everything and everyone there is oriented solely on the individual’s healing process and towards making our journeys easier and more understandable. The facilitators, as well as the shamans (who live on or close to the property) are always available for private consultations and advice and are not mystified or kept in the “ceremony/maloka space bubble”. I went through several ceremonies, first of which was chaotic due to my lack of experience and knowledge on how to approach and work with the medicine or how to cope with a “heavy” journey. I have learned (again with the help and advice of caring facilitators and shamans) that setting your intentions before the ceremony is as important as the diet. Please do not mix expectations with intentions since intentions are as prayers and come with humbleness whereas expectations can only create disappointments as we cannot possibly comprehend the spectrum of Ayahuasca’s artistry, nor should we try to do so. Best advice I could give is to surrender with faith and trust and try to surf on the waves of Her energy without fear or resistance. At the end of the day and no matter how we interpret, understand or not understand the journey, She knows what She is doing and is there to help you. In my case, I found the dosage the be of crucial importance and as with any other medication, even a tiniest bit quantity wise can make a difference and thus, start your journeys with small doses and give Her space to show you the dosage She is comfortable to work with. Furthermore, my approach to shamans changed from one with subtle scepticism and latent prejudices to one of pure respect and I soon learned to treat and approach them with utmost love, respect and humbleness which was exactly what I received from them, regardless of my initial approach. They deserve the same respect that you would render to a physician who would be operating on your heart, since they do the same, but on an energetically and obviously, more subtle level. Mending broken hearts and minds without knives and stitches. Without stitches, however, does not mean less painful. The traditional doctor will give you an anaesthesia where in this case, you must face many dark sides of your brain and even though you will be safe and warm in the maloca and surrounded by loving people, the journeys can be very hard and exhausting, surfacing traumas and fears that were buried deep in the subconscious creating behavioural patterns and making us into adult auto pilots, contributing all our miseries to something or someone external. The shamans and their icaros guided me through the choppy waters of Ayahuasca, however, the work was mine to be done. The most important and by far the hardest ceremony I went through (I soon learned those are the most life changing and should be embraced as blessings) was the one that went deep into the subconscious and put a spotlight on the very source, the nucleus of the patterns that made me come to Pachamama in the first place. The patterns that made me addictive to being unhappy and judgemental to myself and everyone around me. The medicine took me to the deepest pits of my subconscious mind, where the God given, long time ago forsaken and forgotten child had been timidly hiding from childhood traumas and fears. I saw this child that in a subtle and gradual, but at the same time, aggressive and violent way, got banned from my own existence in a storm called life. It was now in exile, surrounded and safely guarded by many layers ego that dwell as it’s guards, making sure it does not escape from this life long night mare. It was sitting there in the darkest and most unreachable corner of my subconscious being and Ayahuasca, armed with the light of consciousness and teamed up with extremely powerful and experienced shamans, confronted all those guards, took the child by the hand and showed me the divine within. The divine we all came with. I felt as if a tumour had been removed from my soul. A physical ease from heavy burdens that I have been carrying for so long, that I actually became accustomed to their weight. I do realise that the ceremonies serve merely as guidelines and that Ayahuasca is not a gold fish or a fairy with a magic wand. For me, the work begun with the following morning, with the first negative thought that was in the service of the old patterns. The only difference is that that morning, I could actually recognise it as such, instead of attributing it to my personality. We cannot fight our patterns without the light of consciousness and in Pachamama temple, I received all the light I needed. The whole atmosphere of the place seemed like from another dimension. The food was healthy, delicious and prepared with love, I tried fruits I never knew even existed There are innocent and unspoiled children running around the property (Shaman’s kids I realised afterwards), people are caring in a genuine way, conversations are real and friendships for life. The support I got goes beyond anything I have ever experienced in this life and I highly recommend it to all of you brave enough to face and fight that which does not belong to you.