This is the story of my journey from leaving a stable mainstream job in the US to being a caretaker three years later at an isolated rainforest property in the Atlantic Rainforest of Brazil. There, with the invitation of a shaman, I regularly drank Ayahuasca without his supervision. In short, this is the story of radical transformation, or as the subtitle says, this book documents my initiation into plant medicine. SMMM is much more than just a story about me though, which brings us to my intention for writing it. The book serves as a source of information for beginners to Ayahuasca and other sacred medicines. It gives practical guidance that I wish had been given to me before my first ceremonies. There are also many teachings included from my shaman that will benefit a more experienced person.
There are already books available that talk about the healing potential of Ayahuasca. What makes mine unique is the focus on going Beyond Healing. What happens when a person is healed of their suffering, but continues to drink the medicine? I propose that they will continue to awaken, evolve and grow at an accelerated rate. And what happens when a large number of people do this? In my honest opinion, that is the only way humanity will solve the current crisis we face. Politics and technology are simply not enough. To solve problems like environmental destruction, poverty, war and disease we need to transcend our rational minds and access our higher selves. The modern mind is a powerful tool, but inappropriate use of it causes more problems than it solves. My book demonstrates how Sacred medicines can allow us to put the rational mind where it belongs, as servant to the higher self.
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Prophecy of Time by Justin Totemical, courtesy of threyda.com
Peru It has been more than 2 years since my journey to Peru to explore the healing properties of the sacred plant medicines traditionally used by the people of the region, Ayahuasca and Huachuma. My exploration of entheogens continued upon my return to the US with the therapeutic use of plants and substances available here such as Peyote, Psilocybin, MDMA and LSD. Following many months of deep work while using such a wide range of medicine the benefits were certainly evident and the next step in the process was to integrate all those amazing experiences into a functional daily routine while introducing my friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers to the new me. The primary challenge of my integration has consisted mostly of finding my place in a society that I have become increasingly cynical of. As I discovered, swallowing those foul tasting brews, leaving my job and stepping into the unknown were actually the easy parts. Coming back was the real challenge…
The title of this article is a spin on the famous slogan that was successfully used during the election campaign to make Donald Trump the president of the United States. The slogan “Make America Great Again” raises some interesting questions such as, when exactly was this great time we are attempting to return to? “Make America Great” without the “Again” part might have been a better choice. I think a more important question to ask though is why do we continue to believe one single human is capable of changing a nation of nearly 320 million people in a meaningful way ? During these past 8 years Barack Obama showed us this is simply not possible despite some very inspired voters that hoped it was. He obviously accomplished many great things during his time in office, and there is a complicated explanation for why he didn’t accomplish more, but he alone was not enough. A person like the Dalai Lama can be an effective leader of many people, though I would argue that is because he is much more of a spiritual leader than a political leader. It always helps to have a great leader, and to have your preferred candidate in the White House, but we need to be realistic about our expectations of being saved by one single person.
Forget everything you thought you knew about psychedelics, especially if you never tried them before. A minority of people has ever tried psychedelics and many associate them only with concerts, escape and youthful experimentation. I would say a minority of that minority has intentionally consumed them for spiritual, medicinal or self development purposes. All of this is fine except a great majority of us are completely missing what psychedelics have the greatest purpose and potential for, teaching us how to better exist on this planet together. Not only are we unaware of their true purpose, but we are forbidding those who want to explore this potential from doing so.