Ritually used for millennia by the indigenous peoples of the Amazon Basin, ayahuasca is a provocative agent of psychological, emotional and spiritual change, served up in liquid form. Its use is spreading rapidly around the globe, as modern-day people discover the transformative potential of this visionary plant brew.
The wisdom that ayahuasca activates is the flowering of our own natural intelligence. It’s a complex and potent healing agent, not just a chemical concoction but a powerful sacred medicine that works in sync with the Self—that’s the Big ‘S’ Self—to catalyse healing and growth at all levels. It requires a great deal of courage and no small amount of savvy to fathom this, to navigate skillfully through the process, and, especially, to apply the fruits of the journey to one’s life.
This last is the work of integration, and those experienced with ayahuasca consider it to be the most important aspect of the process. Integration is the inner work you do in the days, weeks and months following ayahuasca ceremony, to claim the realisations received and make them your own. In my work as an integration therapist, I blend the insights of depth psychology and meditation practice with a multitude of practical tools and approaches to create a complete context that honors your mind, spirit, heart and body.
Working with ayahuasca is a co-creative process. It interacts synergistically with body, mind and spirit in ways that are utterly unique to each individual. I am continually amazed by ayahuasca’s ability to pick the lock of the conceptual mind, releasing the contents of the personal unconscious and beyond. It liberates our inner wisdom in ways that are often surprising, but always organic to our individual path.
The multi-faceted healing that ayahuasca engenders requires thoughtful preparation, strength and sincerity during ceremony, and conscious integration in the time that follows. The long-term results depend on how consciously and completely we show up for it. Ayahuasca is not a chemical substance to ingest and simply expect to be fixed. It’s a complex and sacred medicine—an intelligent plant spirit, the people of the Amazon say—that demands to be met with all the courage, wisdom and openness we can muster.
Through my work as an integration therapist, drawing on my background as a depth psychotherapist and Buddhist practitioner, I aim to present ayahuasca integration in a comprehensive context, one rooted in psyche and reaching towards spirit, respecting the exigencies of modern lives and modern minds—and honoring the work of this mysterious and powerful plant that is rapidly spreading its gifts around the world.