*This review is from a slightly different perspective due to the length of time spent in the jungle, but also the capacity in which I existed there.*
Spending 5 weeks in the jungle had never really been something on my radar till suddenly last May it was. After submitting to the volunteer program and going through the subsequent interviews in June, I ended up on a boat headed up the Madre De Dios the beginning of September unsure of what I was getting myself into.
Canto Luz is really a special place on this planet! The various buildings constructed from rough hewn timber off the property are beautiful and very rustic. It’s certainly not the most remote place you can go on this planet, but it’s pretty wild and remote. Rising every morning as the jungle awoke, going to bed to the rhythmic sounds of various insects – you feel much more connected to the world and it’s amazing. That isn’t to say there aren’t unpleasantries like mosquitos, wasps and the like but nothing is so awful that you can’t deal with it. Ironically, I think the little “pests” in the jungle are there to teach you something just as much as any of the visions and experiences the ceremonies bring.
Despite all the meals being vegan, the food is quite tasty and filling. Our volunteer staff rotated turns preparing meals so everyone got a chance to make everything on the menu at least once. I can tell you with confidence – Canto Luz takes cooking good food seriously. Now if you are doing a dieta, that’s a whole different story that doesn’t involve things being nice : )
The point of coming to Canto Luz isn’t to do all kinds of exotic activities but there are definitely some fun ones that were offered by various members of the staff. I’m not going to list what they are because it’s always going to be different with the possible exception of the jungle walk. Being in a remote location can get taxing after a few weeks especially when you are closely interacting with other people you’ve possibly never met before. While the ball is never dropped, the extra curricular schedule is rather flexible to accommodate the needs of the staff as well.
Everyone at Canto Luz, including the volunteers, is there to do personal work so bear that in mind when you show up. It is a safe environment but don’t come there expecting to find Heaven on Earth with “enlightened” people levitating their way through the jungle or anything like that. I can pretty much guarantee that something or someone will get under your skin at some point but it’s simply an opportunity to be more honest with yourself. Canto Luz is a mirror. It puts you up close and personal with you reflecting truths so that you can grow. Don’t expect to drink some medicine and then suddenly be better. It’s not a magic wand type of thing (though it may feel like it at times). The hard reality of life is that healing is many times a process that takes time. Canto Luz and Ayahuasca aren’t going to do the work for you, they are just tools for you to do the work yourself.
Wherever you end up in your journey, will be exactly where you need to be.