An open heart has no limits

The ceremonies are led by Master Shaman Alberto Torres Davila. Alberto has extensive experience in leading the ceremonies and is a well-respected shaman in his community as well as amongst westerners. Maestro Alberto is Ayahuascero, Curandero, Palero and Sananguero. Meaning that he harnesses the medicine of trees that bring healing, teaching and protection to the ceremony. Maestro Alberto has deep connection to Ayahuasca medicine, and holds the ceremony space with an open heart. Maria and Lucas bring their facilitative experience and open non-judgemental support to the ceremonies.

How to prepare for a ceremony:

-Please read dietary recommendations forPreparation for the Retreat prior to your arrival.
- On the day of the ceremony fasting after 12pm is recommended as ayahuasca is taken on an empty stomach. Ayahuasca is a purgative and if needed, will help you clean your digestive system. Having food in the stomach may cause unnecessary vomiting and other digestive discomforts. Further, fasting facilitates the absorption of the ayahuasca and leads to better physical cleansing, stronger "mareacion" (the effect of Ayahuasca), and better concentration which reduces the nausea.
- Drink your last water at least 1 hour prior to the ceremony. This will minimize washroom trips during the ceremony.
- Wear comfortable clothing.
- Bring a small flashlight with you. The ceremonies take place in complete darkness, and you will need a flashlight in order to walk to the washroom. Please be considerate and avoid shining the light into the eyes of other participants and keep the amount of light to a minimum.
- You may bring a water bottle with you in order to rinse out the mouth after taking Ayahuasca. Please do not drink the water during the ceremony.
- For those who are extremely sensitive to sound, you may bring earplugs, as the sounds of the ceremony can sometimes be overwhelming.  

During the ceremony:

Focus inward
Breathe, surrender, align and ground

Ceremonies commence early evening, and last for about 3-5 hours.  There is a brief body scan meditation prior to drinking ayahuasca, to ground oneself in the body.  There may be some brief group dialogue as well before drinking.  The ceremony begins with Maestro singing and incaros into the bottle with Ayahuasca, calling in the medicine spirits and setting the intent for the ceremony. Then Maestro pours ayahuasca into a small cup for you and whistles a short individual blessing into the cup.  Each individual then comes up one at a time, and drinks his or her portion.  It is common to take time and to make your own intent for the ceremony prior to drining, through thought or prayer and then to say "Salud!" just prior to drinking as an expression of gratitude to Maestro and to all who are participating.  After everyone has finished drinking, lights go out and there is a short period of silence as Ayahuasca begins to circulate through the body.  It is important to stay focused during this period, before the singing of icaros starts.  

It is also important to face the mesa.  The mesa is located in front of Maestro, inside the ceremony circle and consists of a cloth with rocks, jewels, and other sacred objects.  It is a symbolic and energetic centre for the combined energy and intentions of Maestro and the participants.  If you are drinikng Ayahuasca for the first time, you will likely lie on a mat.  This is much safer, and allows for deeper relaxation for first timers.  It is important that your head continually faces the mesa.
  It may seem simple, but one can become physically and emotionally disoriented during the ceremony.  During the initial hours of the ceremony Maestro and some of the more experienced participants sing icaros, the shamanic songs, continuously.  The singing is accompanied with chakapas, a collection of jungle leaves, that when shaken, make a soothing sound similar to wooden shakers.  This sound assists Ayahuasca, by putting one in a trance in which shamanic journeying takes place and where many emotional memories may surface. It also helps Ayahuasca clean out the body, as it sends waves of healing through the body. 

The icaros are sung to invoke the spirits of trees, ayahuasca, and powerful beings.   It is important to listen carefully to the icaros as they guide you through the mareacion (the effects of Ayahuasca) and assist one through challenges during the ceremony. During the ceremony, you may see and experience many things, some of them pleasant, some unpleasant.  It is important to stay in the moment and let go of experiences as they come and go.  Fixating and over intellectualizing certain experiences may inhibit further progress.  It is also important to stay within your experience, and not worry or think much about what other people are experiencing.  At times the ceremony may come to a state where it is so overwhelming that one may cry out for help.  This is completely okay, and there will be many people to support you and assist you during these times.  Maestro or another experienced participant may come and sing an icaros for you, and provide healing in other ways.

 

After the ceremony, you can either continue to lie by the mesa, or you may go to your bed until morning wake-up call.

  aya vision

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