Confused Consciousness-Day 3C

Tonight is my third and last Ayahuasca ceremony. I’m not sure what to expect but I now know enough to not have too many expectations. I could not have imagined the experiences that I have had during the last few days. After all, I’ve experienced my death, my birth/rebirth as well as cosmic love. I’m getting more and more accepting of the unexpected although not having expectations is still a struggle for me. The very act of consciously letting go only serves to make me more aware of my more deeply-rooted expectations.

As the group sits in a circle around the fire, the Ayahuasca is prepared and blessed. Everyone is fixated on the two indigenous healers; Taita Pedro Divila, a no-nonsense Shaman and traditional indigenous physician from Columbia, and Teresa Shiki, a gentle but powerful Shuar traditional medicine woman from Ecuador. After the blessing there are four separate ceremonies that Pedro gives each of us, while Teresa stays close to the blessed ceremonial plants. 

It takes time to go around once, there is a lot of work and a lot of us. Taita takes his time while giving so fully of himself that he soon becomes drenched in his own sweat. The group is at a different place now. When we first sat around a fire, I remember how animated and engaged we all were. Now I see everyone focused on their journey, their traumas and the insights they are encountering as well as the plans they have made to depart tomorrow or, perhaps, how they will cope with the world that they left behind now that they have changed and the world has not. It is a lot to process.

Now I see my age as a state of mind. The price of admission to a more fully conscious life and more accepting embrace of my own death and dying. 

For me, it was all the above but mostly about how happy I was despite the struggles and upheaval of the past few days. It is too early to know what all this will mean in my life but I am beginning to understand it less as a transitory and more as a transformative experience. I want to change. I want to incorporate the love that I have experienced into my life. I need to. If I don’t then I am dead inside and, I believe, my life will holds no beauty, no wonder. Now that I have awakened and my consciousness expanded this would be a life not worth living.

Maybe these first feelings and impressions will fade as my body processes the ceremonial plants. I hope not but that would be fine too. Everything changes so this, too, will fold into something else. I only know what I’m feeling today. I believe that my authentic self has been fully awakened and that I’ve begun experience my life differently. I’ve begun to transform from a worrier to a warrior who no longer fears death, or life, from an easily irritated person to a calmer, more reflective person and from a non-believer to a believer. 

It is such a beautiful and joyful experience. I never thought that such an experience would be still possible at my age. As I approach seventy years of age, the simple fact is that I wasn’t ready for the opportunities that presented themselves earlier in my life. I was too engaged in my life and what other people thought of me.  I was ego-driven and unable to understand that things and people who don’t accept the real me don’t matter. Now I see my age as a state of mind. The price of admission to a more fully conscious life and more accepting embrace of my own death and dying. 

As an agnostic, who believes that nothing can be known about the existence or nature of ‘God’, the recent spiritual experiences have been especially challenging.

For now, however, I am struggling to understand my spiritual experiences. I’ve never had a spiritual experience or ‘come to god moment’ despite my years in a Catholic schools run by Nuns and Christian Brothers. I was taught some of the verses and scriptures but none of the love. I’ve learnt to fear Nuns, dread the Brothers and reject Catholicism. I understood the emotional and physical abuse and, in time, knew others who were also sexually abused. I could not shape-shift into having Faith, or belief in an unjust god. Eventually I saw people as people, not ‘god’s representatives on Earth’.

Before this weekend, I’ve judged a religion by how well it demonstrates its religiosity. For instance, no religion that I know, with perhaps the exception of Jainism, has shown a loving, compassion way forward for non-human life forms and nature. Yet, now I see that this is another distraction, a mental fabrication. An ‘us versus them’ distinction. In time, I hope to embrace the belief that there are no such barriers between any of us. Maybe I will also be able to not judge people’s choices, especially their choice regarding how they seek to express their spiritual light. 

The overwhelming love and acceptance that I have felt from the Amazonian traditional medicines and breathwork has been given me an overwhelming sense of openness and oneness. I am left to wonder if this overwhelming love was god or god-like. I felt the need to show my acceptance and love before I received ‘cosmic’ love and acceptance.  I waiver between the influence of the Amazonian traditional medicines and a God-like force, one that I sometimes call divine and other times I call light and love. I don’t know what it is but it is now on my ‘bucket list’.

While it is true that I’ve had a spiritual experience I don’t make the connection that many do to their preferred ‘god’. I fundamentally view religion as branded morality. The Bible, the Koran and the Torah, to me, are not much more than a means of teaching morality and controlling the uneducated and gullible. Such organizations strikes me as perfectly suited to the faithful who are willing to be lead by the axiom ‘do as I say, not as I do’.

I take these thoughts with me as I begin to experience the pull of Ayahuasca

As the first two purification circles are completed by Pedro and Teresa, they begin to prepare for the blessing. It is now dark and everyone is journeying inward with their thoughts. When the blessing was given to me, I felt the energy wave cover me as the smoke from Pedro blanketed me. The last circle wasn’t a circle. We were told to line up for the Ayahuasca and taught how to ceremonially receive it. After everyone had consumed their medicine I stayed outside, under the stars.

I have no intentions for the first time and as the medicine slowly takes hold I become outraged by the fact that plant-based Ayahuasca is illegal in most countries. Have we given up this right, this freedom? Why does the government want to stop its people from experiencing Ayahuasca? Does it impede the pharmaceutical industry or make all of us less prone to the industrial work ethic? Maybe. After all, we are living in what we consider to be a modern world, yet our primitive fear-based nature is stopping all of us from experiencing a more conscious life, one out of touch with the natural, life-sustaining world where nature and all life is part of who we are, not separated by our greed and by how others see us.  

Here I feel safe and loved. I am accepted for how I act, not how I look or the trauma that I am suffering. It is also about acceptance for who I am as a person, a flawed person, who is on a path of enlightenment. It is so beautiful that I can only express its beauty in terms of finding harmony after a lifetime of feeling there was no meaning to my life as an individual. A life where universal love and light exists in each of us but that our true self is a key, perhaps the key, to unlocking receptivity and openness to that birthright. I take these thoughts with me as I begin to experience the pull of Ayahuasca.

As she stood with the intention of pushing me into the fire six men wrestled her to the ground. After some considerable effort they managed to carry her away. 

I felt that I was in another blissful state at first. I was comfortable after the two previous experience. I knew what to expect and made the mistake of expecting the same type of things to happen once again. Everyone was blissful. No one was throwing up or having a psychotic event. No one spoke. It seemed like everything had been said and almost everything had been experienced. I recognized familiar faces of including Krystal and a large, powerful black women that referred to herself as ‘’big momma’’. I basked in the serenity.

Later it turned. ‘Big momma’ had transformed from a joyous person engaged by the music to a warrior. She defiantly stood by the fire and called most of us out for our ‘white privileged lives’. She was maybe 15’ from be but I didn’t react to her anger, I saw it as her trauma, her journey. At the same time I agreed with what she was saying. As she persisted and her anger grew, the staff engaged her. The white men made matters worst despite their gentle approach to calming and silencing her. 

When the person on my other side began to express his anger to me. I told him my approach and her accepted this for a while. However, as ‘big momma’ threatened people, he wanted to intervene but decided to move away. I also move but just a little further around the fire. Her anger was now impacting everyone, so I carelessly went between the fire and where she was seated, then turned my back to her. As she stood with the intention of pushing me into the fire six men wrestled her to the ground. After some considerable effort they managed to carry her away, 

I will need to reflect deeply on the question ‘was I real?’ 

I felt stupid but also grateful for the quiet. I moved closer but not close to Krystal. I hadn’t seen her since her psychotic event and wanted to know if she was in a good space, or not. After we exchanged pleasantries, I told her that I was relieved that there was quiet and that I needed to continue my journey. She, however, wanted to continue to engage me despite being told my a helper not to talk. I moved away a little but she persisted. I told her to be quiet or else I would need to move further away. At first she was quiet but when I glanced at her I saw that she was touching herself. It shook me. She called to me but I moved away. 

After a little while I saw that she was still engaged so I began to try and understand what had happened tonight and if how I reacted is teaching me another lesson. In time, I felt that how I reacted to ‘big momma’ showed that I do not live my own advice, something that I found to be truly humbling. It showed me how far I had to go before I could even think about giving anyone any advice and that I had the heart of a do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do sanctimonious hypocrite. 

The way I reacted to Krystal, however, was different. I felt that she was turning my love into something sexual, something base not something elevated, like I had wanted. When I was her age I wondered if I was any different with the people that expressed their love for me. I had said that I loved her but also rejected her, not once but twice. In time, I saw that it wasn’t her that I rejected as it was her behaviour. I was judging her issues, her behaviour despite a lifetime of being judged by others for mine. 

I wanted to treat others the way I wanted to be treated but I wasn’t able to do so when it mattered to Krystal and ‘big momma’. I wanted to not be hypocritical. Yet all I could do was imagine what I might have done and to try to be more in touch with my own behaviour. I will need to reflect deeply on the question ‘was I real?’ 

12 thoughts on “Confused Consciousness-Day 3C

    1. Thanks for your thoughtful comment, Chris.
      I was calm for the first hour and even helped others to stay calm but when staff couldn’t get her to leave, even with the force of several men, I wanted to do something that showed how pissed off that the chill of the last Aya ceremony was hijacked, without taking it to another level. In hindsight I realize that it was stupid.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Hey Chris. My pleasure. Thanks for the interest. It has been more of a silent retreat since starting the blog so I appreciate your comments.

          The way I see it Ayahuasca can be for anyone under the right circumstances and with the right frame of mind. The bottom line for me, Chris, is that Ayahuasca experience absolutely benefits but even if you have these then the experience falls to where you are in life and your journey.

          Some have deep traumas, all have some traumas. Some are starting their journey, others are not.

          I would never suggest that Ayahuasca is not for everyone, however.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Hi Chris,
            Full disclosure. I’m over my head and need help setting up another blog which is called timeofstupidinatimeofcrazy.wordpress.com – with self isolation I have no where to turn. I think I messed up my initial setup and first post. When I started ‘My transformative Journey’ it was straightforward so now I’m kinda loss and wish that I never started it. Help!!!!

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Don’t let it get to you. Can you go on a WordPress forum and ask someone? It’s free. My web guys are disorganized and hard to get. I’m a hermit here. I don’t know anyone. Sorry.

            Like

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