If you’re new to the subject of Ayahuasca and shamanism then you may wonder what is the point of it all. Why on earth should you even consider coming all the way to the Peruvian Amazon to drink some strange jungle juice that might have some crazy effects on your mind?
In other words, what’s in it for you?
It’s unfortunate that the primary motivation for most people to do almost anything is a selfish one. But that’s just the way our western society moulds most of us as we grow up. It’s also a mindset that Ayahuasca will help to heal you from. The more selfish you are, the more reasons you have to drink Ayahuasca 😉
So why should you consider it?
Below I’ve compiled a fairly comprehensive list of benefits that I know many people have received in some way or another from working with the medicine. Of course it can not be guaranteed that you will receive most of these benefits yourself, particularly if you only do a few ceremonies. However, if you come to the medicine with respect, reverence and good intentions, I virtually guarantee that you will come away feeling much better better for it.
Cleansing and purification
Most people who take part in several Ayahuasca ceremonies will experience at least one ayahuasca purge. You could say an ayahuasca purge is a bit like a car service for a human being. An ayahuasca purge usually involves a lot of vomiting (and sometimes a lot of shitting) but you’re not just ejecting physical stuff. The purge clears you of all the toxic energy and emotions that have clogged up your system, usually with you unawares.
I know that sounds a little bit gross, and it’s true that purging is never fun or pleasant, however, it’s ALWAYS extremely worth it. Often after purging you feel like you’ve been given a brand new body and you feel a profound sense of well being that often lasts for many days, weeks of even months afterwards.
Just like your car feels like new after a good service, your whole being can often feel new after a good ayahuasca purge!
Physical and Emotional Healing
Unlike with most plant medicines, the chemistry of ayahuasca has no known healing properties, however there are countless numbers of people who have experienced incredible healings from drinking ayahuasca. These healings broadly fit into three categories â€“ physical, mental and emotional healing, although they are all usually interconnected in some way.
People have successfully used ayahuasca to cure all kinds of physical ailments including chronic and terminal illness such as tumours and cancer. There is not much in the way of hard scientific data to verify this claim, but if you speak to absolutely anyone who has been working with ayahuasca for a long time, they will probably tell you that they’ve personally witnessed a high number of incredible healings take place.
Ayahuasca is probably even more effective at healing mental and emotional issues. Often if people have experienced trauma in their lives such as physical or sexual abuse, ayahuasca is often incredibly effective at helping them get over whatever issues that still remain.
It is very common to hear people claim that just one ayahuasca ceremony was far more effective and beneficial to them than 10 years of psychotherapy!
One of the most common conditions that ayahuasca is very effective at healing is depression. I’ve personally spoken to several people who had suffered from severe depression (often for many years) until they experienced Ayahuasca. It’s not uncommon for people to have their depression lift (and never return), after just one or two ayahuasca ceremonies.
In my opinion, most depression is ultimately caused by a lack of spiritual connection, a problem that is sadly so prevalent in western society. By reconnecting us with the spirit world, our true home, Ayahuasca helps to heal us of the sadness and despair that afflict so many of our lives.
Recovery from Addictions
It’s not uncommon for people to recover from all kinds of different addictions after experiencing Ayahuasca. Drug and alcohol addictions have been very effectively treated with Ayahuasca and there are even some centers such as Taki Wasi that specialise in helping people heal their addictions using Ayahuasca and other plant medicines.
Deeper Appreciation of Life and More Gratitude
I believe that one of the greatest gifts from Ayahuasca is a deeper appreciation of life. The connection that ayahuasca often helps you to feel makes you far more deeply appreciative of nature, life and the universe and how it’s all interconnected. I nearly always finish each ayahuasca ceremony with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my life, and for all the people who are in my life.
Greater Understanding of Yourself
The question of â€œWho Am I?â€ has probably been asked by every spiritual seeker who has ever walked the Earth. You can spend an entire lifetime trying to answer that question and still feel like you’re not getting any answers. I can’t say that Ayahuasca will answer the question for you, but it will almost certainly reveal many things about you that you may not have been consciously aware of. Ayahuasca often helps to strip away all the many layers of bullshit that often cloud our judgement and prevent us from knowing our true selves.
Experience Expanded Awareness and Higher Levels of Consciousness
One of the great benefits of drinking ayahuasca is the expanded awareness you’ll almost certainly experience during a ceremony and sometimes you may even experience much higher levels of consciousness.
I believe that ultimately all the problems of our world are caused by a lack of consciousness. When you’re operating from higher levels of consciousness then you don’t need to be told the right way to live. You don’t need to be told not to pollute, not to steal, not to be selfish, not to be arrogant, not to be a complete asshole etc. Those things become naturally abhorrent to you. Once you experience higher levels of awareness and consciousness then you will unlikely ever be quite the same person again.
Many people that I’ve spoken to have claimed that drinking Ayahuasca has helped them become much better people.
Many creative people (or even people who didn’t previously consider themselves creative) have found their creativity to be greatly enhanced after experiencing ayahuasca. Often musicians write better music, artists paint better, and writers write better.
If you feel that somewhere deep inside you there’s a creative spark that needs re-igniting you will probably find that ayahuasca will help with that.
Finding Your Life Purpose
From my experience of talking to people after ceremonies, I’ve seen that Ayahuasca seems to help many people get a lot clearer about their life purpose. It is extremely common to see people make some very radical changes in their lives after they’ve experienced Ayahuasca. Quite often people leave careers or jobs they’ve always disliked because suddenly they become crystal clear about what they need to do next that will add more meaning or more joy to their lives.
Deeper Connection to Nature
If you’ve seen the movie Avatar and were moved by the way the N’avi people were deeply connected to their natural environment then you may be interested to know that this connection does not just exist in movies. While under the influence of Ayahuasca many people report experiencing a profound connection with nature that often changes their lives and the way they see the world. And this connection does not necessarily disappear when the effects of the medicine wear off.
Break Free of Social Conditioning
We are all products of our social conditioning. As we grow up, our friends, family and society has a huge influence on the type of people we grow up to be, and in many ways our social conditioning is what moulds our perception of reality. Overcoming social conditioning is a huge challenge for many people, who often aren’t even aware it’s a problem. Ayahuasca often allows us to see how we’ve been conditioned, particularly the aspects of our conditioning that are harmful to our spiritual growth. Only through knowledge and awareness can we then start to break the conditioning that is holding us back from being all we can truly be.
That’s quite an amazing list of benefits isn’t it? â€“ so much so, that I think the question should not be ‘Why should you do it?’, but instead ‘Why on earth would you not want to do it!?’ 😉
However, I do have one last point that is important to keep in mind if you decide to work with Ayahuasca. While the benefits of working with Ayahuasca can be immense and often life changing, it’s very important that you come to the medicine with no big expectations. The people who have the most disappointing experiences are usually the people who take high expectations into the ceremony with them. Each benefit that Ayahuasca can give you is a gift from her and therefore should not be expected, but only accepted – with love and gratitude.
Have you experienced Ayahuasca? If so, please leave a comment below about what benefits you have received from working with the medicine.