Friday, November 12, 2010

Another Ayahuasca Post

When I posted my last piece on ayahuasca, a friend who read it wrote to ask if ayahuasca was used to clean up the "kinks" in people's lives. I think it's more than that, much more profound than that. So here's what I wrote her in response.

The ayahuasca cleans you out physically, but only in that it eliminates parasites and worms and such--very common ailments in a place where sun-dried fish might get wet in a shower, then dried a second time, then wet again, then dried again---a hotbed for icky stomach stuff.
But ayahuasca primarily cleans out your emotional closet. It can make you relive the bad stuff you've done--I know you haven't done any bad stuff, but a lot of people have been petty, or lied to their girl/boy friends at some time. And it sometimes makes you relive those moments a hundred times--and then lets you eliminate them. And you also get to eliminate the angers and resentments you carry around, even if you're not aware of carrying them around. You just see them, deal with them, and then let them go.
Part of the way I think that's accomplished is because ayahuasca also lets you glimpse into the spirit of things: of trees, of the sun, of rocks, of a mosquito--lets you really glimpse the enormity of the whole damned shebang, or at least a much bigger slice than we normally get to see. And in that enormity, when we suddenly remember a former friend who we resent because they did something bad to us, well, it's so small in comparison to the really really big picture we're seeing at the same time that we no longer feel we have room to keep that resentment in our hearts, or those hurts in our soul. So we let them go.
Do people think it's for working out kinks in their lives? I don't know. Most of the people I deal with have never done it before but have an inkling that the world is as big as it is in their dreams and want to see that while waking. They, my clients, are also generally people in a crisis, whether they know it or not. People whose marriages are breaking up and they don't know why sometimes get to see that They are the problem and glimpse a way to fix themselves that might in turn fix their marriage. Others are at an age where they wonder if there is any meaning to living any more after the kids are gone and such. Others just want to see if there is a big picture at all.
Ayahuasca can be the key that opens those doors. Of course, the people have to make the changes themselves. Being shown alternatives doesn't just make your life better. It just means you see that you have choices where you didn't see them previously.
And for some people, like one fellow coming on my Feb trip who has already been with me, well, he just wants more of the kind of learning he was given by the medicine. He feels there is more to get. He was a big hunter and after the trip with me found he couldn't hunt anymore. Just lost his taste for taking a life once he saw, really saw and felt, the value of life. He's already an emergency room doctor, so he already valued life but didn't understand that the deer he was killing for food and sport were as vital to the whole skein of things as he did once he had the medicine.
So it's bigger than "kinks". It's really about affirming the hugeness and brilliance of the whole universe in everything that makes that up. It's about learning how small and petty we are, but at the same time how vital we are to that universe. It's about being allowed to see, or glimpse, the living spirit in everything. And something like that doesn't just work out kinks, it resets your soul.
At least that's what I think.

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