Via: Sebastian Kaulitzki

Watch: This Is How Ayahuasca Heals Your Brain

Via: Sebastian Kaulitzki


by Aaron Kase

on June 3, 2015

Psychedelic substances like ayahuasca are renowned for helping people move on from past traumas, even when they become deeply rooted in mental disorders like PTSD. But how do the psychedelics actually affect the brain?

In this video, “How Does Ayahuasca Work? The Brain Explained,” we learn about the links between memory and emotion and how ayahuasca can help you let go of even your most traumatic experiences.

Ayahuasca works on three different parts of the brain, the video explains. For one thing, it causes the brain’s neocortex to become hyperactivated. The neocortex is responsible for motor functions, sensory perception, conscious thought and language — in order words, it’s what allows us to know ourselves and to interact with the world. “This is where we perceive, reason and make decisions,” the video explains.

During an ayahuasca trip there is also activity in the amygdala, where long-term memories are stored, and the insula, the part of the brain that links emotional impulses and decision making.

“When any stimulus enters the brain, the brain tries to understand it based on previous experiences,” the video says. “This pattern is like a shortcut, activated every time we face a similar situation.” That’s why trauma or other powerful events can make such an impact when they occur early in life.

If you are attacked by a dog as a child, for example, your brain might automatically associate the experience with any canine encounter, causing you to fear dogs for the rest of your life. “We might even react adversely to a distant bark,” the film states. Even if you can logically recognize that every dog is not going to be a threat, your initial reaction could still be one of programmed fear. And if events are repeated with the same result, the patterns only reinforce their connections, building up like scar tissue.

That’s where psychedelics can help. “Ayahuasca hyperactivates the entire brain region where we store and process emotional memory, often uncovering long-forgotten memories,” the video says. “This hyperactivation enables the conscious part of the new brain to temporarily override previously entrenched patterns, allowing new connections to be made.”

Memories can then be reevaluated and experiences addressed with more distance from the reflexive reactions to previous trauma. For example, an ayahuasca journey could allow the person who is afraid of dogs to break the fear’s hold on their brain and move past the negative encounter.

“Ayahuasca users typically describe having emerged with new perspectives on past experiences and deeply rooted patterns of behavior,” the film concludes.

  • auduuun

    Abuelita, ayahuasca <3

  • Jane5

    I think you meant to write “amygdala”

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  • twinkiebear

    I think most people should have a conscious expanding experience.

  • jaaleezee

    This is what I need but where do I go, who do I talk to? Being diagnosed with three chronic health conditions has resulted in trying to figure out who I am now and and what kind of life I will have. I currently live in the Midwest. I would greatly appreciate any advice you can offer. Ironically, I helped others, professionally, when I was working as a psychotherapist. Intuitively I know that Ayahuasca is what I need. Thank you for reading my tale of woe

  • Jerónimo M.M.

    that’s a clip from the CBC documentary The Jungle Prescription

  • Dana L

    Google blue morpho in iquitos peru
    I will be going there for ayahuasca in a few months. I have friend who have gone there and Im confident its a safe & reputable center

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  • victortancheongwee34

    I would love to try it, but the side effect and vomiting turn me off, any opinion. Thanks.
    Can we do this without those painful experience of vomiting

  • Mikhail Kolitwenzew

    I didn’t vomit when I did it albeit was a light to medium dose.

  • Mikhail Kolitwenzew

    They’re using science for something that is beyond the explanation of science, LOL. Its a good try though explains it okay.

  • Derrod


  • victortancheongwee34

    so how was your experience? can share a little with me over here?

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  • Krista Gallagher

    The vomiting is so needed. Yes it is unpleasant (I spent nights vomiting and dry heaving for over 10 hours-I’m an extreme case though) but it is a true purging of everything you need to get rid of. It isn’t just throwing up- you are literally ridding your body of trauma and old patterns through it.

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  • Janie Eileen Ambrose

    I do some something called the HEAL Technique that works similarly in changing patterns in the brain without any harmful substances and with something I called brain wave breathing. This works miracles changing DNA and even releasing stuff passed down from ancestors. I can even do this session over Skyppe. Details at

  • Lourdes Silva

    Hi. I went to the amazon from iquitos Peru. Check out spirit quest on fb or Google it. It will change your life for the better. Don Howard and Don Rober are just great. Best luck on your journey and have faith but no expectations. Mother Ayahuasca goes in your soul, she knows just what you need. Xo

  • LeeLee

    There are many other plants used in the same healing ceremonies that do not act as purgatives. San Pedro might be more attractive to you as a plant, and many shamans work with it. Ayahuasca is the only plant people write articles about and because of that it is usually the only plant people try. It’s important to know that first, there are many other plants; second, all plants offer you a depth of experience, not just ayahuasca; third, you absolutely must connect with a reputable shaman with integrity – not all are.

  • LeeLee

    There are many plants, ayahuasca is not the only one. I can recommend you Anna Hunt, she is UK-based but runs ceremonies in both Peru and throughout Europe, using different plants in different places.

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  • Addictist

    Many people don’t need an external chemical and purging ritual to re-pattern their brains. Perhaps more deeply rooted or continuously reactivated trama networks needs the extra boost, but you can reprogram trauma by re-regulating during the exploration of those memories in a safe environment. Through therapy, psycho-emotional training and re-patterning is possible. Certainly slower but with less bugs and buckets.

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  • Leonard Marino

    HI krista,
    Could you send me a link to a company that sells Ayahuasca

  • Mircea Marin

    What is he talking about “physical discomfort” ?

  • Mircea Marin

    I tried it and never had any side effects

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  • Thomas Madison

    Positive psychedelic experiences can be way to heal emotional trauma but there are easier ways. NeuroLinguistic Programming or NLP for short is nothing less than amazing. It has many uses as a hypnotherapy tool. It’s (sometimes) self directed hypnosis for healing, sometimes for increasing performance in a variety of areas, including school, and sports. David Snyder is good.
    Ayahuasca or DMT can help repair the pineal gland, which controls dreaming, and some say psychic ability.

  • Monika

    I would strongly recommend taking Ayahuasca under the supervision of a good, reliable shaman or a person trained to carry a session therapy. It is not something you can just buy and take like a regular drug. Too powerful to fiddle with it 🙂 I can recommend a in Brasil, but I guess there must be sth in the States too. good luck Monika

  • Padge Vounder

    knowing how to get a hold of them when in countries where they are illegal is difficult.

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