Several years ago I traveled to Peru and spent time in the Amazon rain forest. The experience was more than a vacation; it manifested out of a curiosity to explore the entheogens that have been known to induce a spiritual experience. The plant in particular that drew my attention to the Amazon was a hallucinogenic plant that has been used for thousands of years by the indigenous people of the Amazon. While in the rainforest I explored the altered states of mind that this plant medicine offered.
Ayahuasca has been known to help people overcome fears, depression, and addictions that may have become deeply embedded as somatic data. In addition, it may be used to embark on a subconsciously driven spiritual journey. The Ayahuasca can present you with a momentary reality that I would classify as a state of heightened awareness to our connection with the universe. My personal experience with the medicine opened me up to a subjectively anchored meta-reality, outside of the threshold of the conscious mind. Even though the imagination guided this surreal experience, the psychedelic augmented reality felt emotionally convincing. The feeling of the trip had a likeness to a very strong gut feeling felt throughout the body.
As a purgative, a commonly reported experience of Ayahuasca is that it induces vomiting. Some say that this is a physical manifestation of ridding the body of toxins that are, at their core, energetic. It is also known to detox the body of parasites and unhealthy bacteria in the digestive system. What seemed like a few hours after taking Ayahuasca, my stomach was aching a lot, however I never vomited.
The visuals presented by the first dose began with vines, roots, branches, surrounding and wrapping around and all over my body. My stomach was aching, yet still no purge. The experience felt as though my body had merged with plant sentience. During the experience my form felt unfamiliar, yet identifiable with a plant. During this moment in time, the journey into the subconscious morphed my reality to what I would assume to be the frequency of plant sentience. My intestines became roots and vines, twisting, turning, wrapping and overlapping each other as my stomach ached. The movement of the plant matter was in sync with the movement of my bowels. As my bowels moved more aggressively, so did the plant matter. As my bowels slowed and calmed, so did the roots and vines. The branches, vines, and roots were constantly moving, accelerating and decelerating throughout the trip. Other parts of the plant matter covering my body were in sync with my heartbeat, pulsating with it. The third movement of the roots and branches I saw was that of my thoughts. Every thought that popped into my head manifested as a new root or vine springing into existence. The stream of consciousness was intense, and so were the visuals of the plant appendages moving all through out, synced with my thoughts. When my thoughts slowed down, so did the flow of roots, branches, and vines; when my thoughts became numerous, so did the plant appendages. I saw both my thoughts, and the plant appendages, as representing a stream of consciousness. The experience felt like I had a symbiotic relationship with the wise feminine plant.
The early stages of the hallucinogen taking affect felt like I was in between worlds; in between this reality and another, yet not fully immersed in either. Well into the mind journey I felt an unusual vibration, catching a glimpse of a humanoid entity immersed within that vibration. While processing and encountering the experience, I judged it, and assumed it to be parasitic. What came to mind was that it fed on the life force energy of living things outside of its dimension. This was a possible “what if” imagined among conspiracy theories that resurfaced in my imagination, expressing itself during the trip. The brief witnessing of the hallucination did not disturb the remainder of the trip, although it did have a confusing nature to it that triggered my curiosity.
As I was coming down from the trip I felt an overwhelming sense of happiness. This is not to infer I was happy with what I observed, but it was likely due to the plant medicine having a chemical effect on all or some of the dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, and endorphins in the brain. The best way to articulate this feeling was an overwhelming feeling of positive energy.
The next morning I walked out of the shack stumbling, feeling like a baby just learning how to use its body. During that time, I experienced a hyper curiosity and awareness for seemingly unexciting things, such as a blade of grass, or a small bird. I was elated and joyful to be among the blessings of nature that we often take for granted.
My second experience with Ayahuasca was in isolation in the wilderness. I was walked to a location not far from the shack-looking cabin. This area of the forest had a hammock and a canopy for me to rest. A few days prior I was told I was required to stay out there by myself to absorb the energy of the environment. I needed to be in isolation, to distance myself from people who have not been cleansed by the dieta. A dieta is a carefully selected diet eaten in between Ayahuasca sessions, including special vegetarian foods. This is in addition to the Ayahuasca drink, meant to purify the body and allow the plant medicine to work more effectively. In addition, books, and wireless devices are not allowed as these things would be a distraction to my exploration of innerspace.
After a few days in isolation I took a second dose of Ayahuasca. Again, I didn’t feel the effect until hours later. My stomach was turning once again, but I was not feeling or seeing anything other than the usual discomfort associated with an upset stomach. Just as I was beginning to get impatient with the Ayahuasca, the experience with the plant revealed itself. A supra-consciousness, beyond the ordinary daily experience of consciousness, emerged out of the depths of regular awareness. Once again I began to see plant extensions twirling and reaching down toward me from above. Their colors were shifting, changing, and pulsating. The presentation of the experience was as though I was inside the mind of the jungle itself. I was surrounded by clusters of brain cells that shared a resemblance to plant matter; the axons were formed as plant matter, resembling plant appendages such as roots, vines, or branches.
The instantaneous and intuitive communication felt as though it had an energetic charge to it. It may seem counterintuitive to communicate with a seemingly inanimate life form such as a plant, yet in some weird way, it felt sentient. It was as though the experience lifted a veil of ignorance that uncovered a world of plant sentience. While under the influence of the ancient medicine, all recognizable forms faded, feeling as one, yet discrete enough to feel a presence of other, the plants.
During the experience, I felt a spiraling motion moving upward, as though I was a stationary fish in water, feeling the upward motion of my surroundings, getting pulled from the top. Every time I tried to make sense of it by reaching out to touch what presented itself as an energetic tornado like circular rotation; the energetic rotation immediately solidified into a thick branch, feeling as heavy as a large rock, reversing the upward motion into a downward motion. When it did this it would drive my hands back with such force as though to remind me that I can never truly know or quantify God. I was in awe of the complexity of it all, overwhelmingly stimulating, and yet it beautifully felt simplified by its unifying architecture.
I asked the jungle, are we alone? Subjectively, it felt like my question was answered with a no. My altered state of mind’s interpretation of what felt like a convincing communication with the rainforest emphasized that we are all the same at our basic form, and all manifestations of discrimination are heavy attachments to the array of egos that we identify and differentiate ourselves with.
The totality of the experience throughout the entire journey left a profound impact on the clarity of my awareness. I couldn’t help but continue to wonder about the meaning and possible implications of these deeply spiritual hallucinations. In addition, conclusions had been drawn, stemming from popular theories surrounding the paranormal. The experience was a breath of fresh air, very distinct from the cultural atmosphere that limits the scope of our existential awareness. As we look for answers to concerns and curiosities, we continue to overlook and exclude the unfamiliar forms of knowledge. The experience showed me how late I was to filter disturbances that distance our nature from source. Varying degrees of density keep us in working order, yet ignorant of ourselves. People bare focus on the limitations of our unified existence, led to believe that the projection of the ego is the totality of the hologram that embeds our experience. I would highly recommend this medicine for use in healing and growth.