By Lori Camacho & Raina
This ancient practice has been gaining popularity in the last 15-20 years. I remember hearing about someone’s experience a good 15 years ago but it wasn’t very common. Now those in the community often travel outside of the U.S. for such life changing ceremonies. I am often asked about whether this is a beneficial or even safe thing to do. I will talk about it from my own perspective and then let Raina speak for herself.
When a plant medicine healing ceremony is approached with responsibility it can be a beautiful life changing experience. Let’s look at what constitutes responsibility:
Is the shaman you’re working with trained with integrity?
One way to know this is to have referrals. I do not suggest travelling to Peru and picking anyone that offers you a ceremony. This is asking for trouble. It is unfortunate that there are con-artists that would do this, but with the increased popularity of westerners travelling for this experience, you are going to get some bad apples. Please, please have a good referral from someone who had a good experience. There are lodges that are considered safe and plant medicine tours that you can be a part of to ensure you are not walking into anything that is not held with integrity.
This is not to say you should not have an experience in a more rural natural place, but again have a referral from someone who has worked with a shaman multiple times and maybe understands their customs or language.
Is it legal in your area?
Although there are ceremonies that go on everywhere, it is only legal in certain countries. Currently in the U.S. it is not legal. It has become legal in Brazil and Spain more recently and remains legal in the countries it originates from anywhere from Mexico all the way to Ecuador and Peru.
Why are you wanting this experience?
What is your intention, in other words? A plant medicine ceremony should never be approached with a light attitude or your ego wanting to try a fun drug. The purpose of this, is healing. You do not have to know exactly what, but you should have an idea of what in your life is going on that you need or desire this type of healing. It is an intense experience that will force growth on many levels. You should be prepared for that with a solid intention to change and grow.
There are specific preparations for this experience that may initially seem inconvenient. Remember that you are agreeing to cleanse yourself and part of that is the diet and preparation that is being asked of you. Put your ego aside, and be all in with each part of the prep that leads up to your experience including the no television, sex etc. These shamans have thousands of years of ancestors behind them that hold space for this. There is a reason they have you prepare in specific ways.
Who should or should not participate in these ceremonies?
In the settings these ceremonies are originally held, the people there live very naturally and are taught from birth to honor spirit and participate as children regularly. Most of us on the other hand, were not raised this way and had to find our way to our spirituality in a world that teaches us to ignore spirit.
My personal feeling is that a medicine ceremony is not the optimal first time meditation experience you want to have. It would behoove you to work with meditation, spiritual development and yoga first. And for quite a while before delving into a medicine ceremony. Preferably in a way that teaches you to work with the different parts of yourself such as in Raina’s Sage Spiritual Foundation Program.
What I notice in the healing community in general is that everyone wants to go from 0 to everything and skip the process in between. You do not become a musician or ballet dancer overnight and spirituality is the same. There is no shortcut, only continued process that makes you a master of your reality.
These ceremonies are hugely helpful in showing you what is possible and maybe breaking open some things you had a hard time getting to but it will still be necessary to work with meditation and development afterwards. It is not a cure all.
You should be already committed to your spirituality and healing path before deciding to do this. It’s an advanced tool in my opinion that isn’t right for everyone. At the very least, you should be able to navigate yourself in a meditative healing experience regularly before embarking onto a plant medicine ceremony.
Raina’s Perspective on Plant Medicine Ceremonies
We work with plant spirit beings as their purpose and our purpose is the same. To awaken and heal those they touch. The difference is that they have a body in your world that is the plant. That plant body allows a human to have a more intimate encounter by ingesting it. A spirit teacher is a spirit teacher.
Your own inner spirit teacher’s may have a more difficult time helping you open to their guidance and love in matters that are very deep indeed. The plant medicine assists in this matter and one is called when they are ready. This is not something your ego can judge. If you have been called by a plant spirit teacher, the mystery of that call will guide you to where you belong to the plant medicine that can best open this healing.
We will reiterate that the plant spirit teacher is most important. A human can work with the plant teacher before ingesting its body in ceremony. We would suggest this to be quite beneficial to becoming acquainted. Work with them in meditation and allow them to call you by creating a rapport before ceremony is taken.
There are many ancestral traditions that worked with the plant spirits and participated in ceremony in this way to grow spiritually in the natural world. It was traditionally the shamans, seers, healers and priestesses that invoked these spirit teachers by ingesting medicine together and then bringing back their teachings to the bards and people of their time.
Work with your plant spirit teacher, ingest their love and then decide upon sacred ceremony with the physical body of plant.
Love is sent without constitution dear physical angels.
-Raina & Lori Camacho
Trance Channel, Clairvoyant Healer and Spiritual Teacher, Lori Camacho, has been serving others with her gifts of clairvoyance and vibrational healing abilities since 2003. It was in 2007 that Lori began to spontaneously vocalize Raina, the wise consciousness she had memories of communicating with as a child. Together Lori and Raina have created many workshops, classes and writings.