Buttons are not only clothes…
Sitting on my knees for the fourth consecutive hour, I was shivering
from either the cold or the mescaline. I noticed the Shaman
distributing round two of the peyote dose, and my mind involuntarily
began to scramble for an escape. My heart started sinking as I
realized I was not going anywhere; the medicine man was going from
person to person, depositing the powder into the guests’ mouths,
whether they wanted it or not.
With or without psychoactive assistance, it is quite easy to get
overwhelmed by the richness of the Native American healing ceremony.
The one I attended took place in a NYC’s community park. The territory was a part of NYC’s Native
American land, where the Peyote ceremonies can legally be held, as the
Peyote cacti is considered a “Religious Sacrament” and therefore
constitutionally protected under Freedom of Religion.
In modern culture, plants with psycho-active properties are associated
with hedonism and irresponsibility. Indigenous people, on the other
hand, use visionary plants for healing and spiritual communion. This
peyote cactus, a sacred medicinal plant that has been used for
thousands of years for visionary healing by Native Americans, had
somehow journeyed from the deserts of New Mexico and Arizona to here,
the concrete jungle, far away from home, a rare species in this cold
and damp climate.
Fortunately for me, I happened to be inside of the tipi that night. I
have participated in various healing ceremonies before, but never
experienced the peyote one. Prior to the prayer, women are usually
asked to clean the peyote buttons, separating the roots and the
flowers. The latter is used for making the peyote tea. The buttons and
powder that’s distributed during the ceremony has a quite nauseating
taste, but you get used to it as you experience it more.
The water drum, considered to be one of the most sacred and
spiritually significant drums in religious ceremonies amongst the
Native Americans, was pounding loud. Under the influence of the
psychedelic, it seemed to me to be a rhythm that was “ridding the
participants of their inner evils”. As another effect of the medicine,
millions of sounds and bits of colorful and bright energy were
floating around and above
me. A cacophony of rattles, eagle whistles, feathers and drums, used
to attenuate and harmonize the vibrations of the experience with that
of the positive energies of the songs and prayers, were washing my
mind in a synesthesia of sounds and visions that oscillated between
terrifying and blissful.
The participants of the ceremony gather and pray around the fire all
night, while a specially appointed fire keeper takes care of it,
forming various symbols out of the coils that are sacred to the Native
American people: an eagle, a star or sun with seven rays or no rays.
The fire is the center of the ceremony and is a symbolical
representation of the sun on earth. “We sit in a circle whenever
possible to remind us that we are all equal and united in the
ceremony, and that we are sharing the medicine and the moment to help
each other,” says Kuauhtli Vasquez who has been conducting Native
American ceremonies for over twenty years now. Requests for healing
medicine ceremonies have taken Kuauhtli all around the USA including
Hawaii, Mexico, Canada, Central America, South America, and Europe.
The ceremonies are usually structured to honor the elements of life:
fire, water, the earth, and the wind, the vital energies of human
existence. The specially grown sacred tobacco is used to communicate
with the spirit of life, the medicines and each other. And of course
the plant, sacred Peyote that has caused a lot of controversy in the
past but was finally legalized in the United States as a religious
sacrament of the Native American Church. Its active ingredient
mescaline typically has a deep self-observational and healing effect
on its users. A normal feeling of discomfort and sometimes purging is
associated with the healing process and tenderly called “getting
Praised by such great writers of the last half century as Carlos
Ginsberg and Hunter S. Thompson, peyote has been used by tribal people
for hundreds or perhaps thousands of years and has now made its way to
the 21st Century.
Unlike the modern day pharmaceuticals, plant medicines that exist in
different forms all around the world treat causes and not the symptoms
of both physical and psychological diseases. “People are constantly
healed of drug and alcohol
addictions, past trauma including sexual abuse and rape,” adds
Kuauhtli. By taking them on a journey through the depths of their
psyche, peyote forces people to reckon with themselves, and transcend
the past. “People are freed of past guilt for crimes they have
committed against humanity, war crimes are forgiven, family
relationships are mended, almost everyone can benefit.”
As the sun was coming up hot and bright that morning and the ceremony
was coming to its end, I found myself gripped by the feeling of
sincere joy and appreciation for my life. I felt like the worrisome
burden of my stressful New York City lifestyle was lifted up and I was
free to emerge
into a new more expansive reality.
The medicine gave me an opportunity to take a huge leap in my own mind
and realize the social chains that needed to be broken in order to be
a creator of your own destiny. It taught me to look inside myself and
see the endless waves of creative forces, an ocean of ideas
that not only can make me a living, but also fulfill my ever searching
Since that first journey, I have returned for four more ceremonies.
Each time, my pride in belonging to the peyote community has
increased. As one side benefit, I have
noticed the medicine having a particularly powerful effect amongst my
creatively minded friends. Artists, musicians, and writers tend to
find themselves creatively inspired after the use of the medicine. Perhaps the
plant has the ability to open invisible channels of inspiration and
unblock the existing artist blocks. Whatever it may be, I’m utterly
convinced that the medicine energizes and balances the human spirit with
the rest of creation, while working on the individual aspects of each
This is some divine synchronicity
I recognize your star ethnicity
Pair of green blue eyes,
When you talk I can really rise
From a simple human
To a godly state
I dig everything you have ever made
Your playful nature
Keeps me going
But sometimes I need ya
More than anything on this entire planet
And I wish it wasn’t like that,
In the midst of the wildest storm
Think of me
So we can be reborn
For each other again and again
Not as sister and brother
But in lover’s den
My library is infinite
For your demanding needs
For every mouth
I have a hand that feeds
Recognize my love
Through the hurricaines and storms
It’s waiting for you
To be honored and bestowed
How many times we decide to be
Someone we’re not
In order to just live
But time has no power over me
I can wait for centuries
And just let it be
And when you’re awaken from your sweet summer dream
I will be there ready to get real…
STOKED ON LIFE
Being extremely grateful for every experience I have had, I now would like to share some new knowledge with you.
Being a spiritual person myself, I was never affiliated with any organized religion, in which I take a lot of pride. But turns out that even spirituality can be as much of a trap as any organized religion. Until you are absolutely free off all the substances and learn to see the world around you as a pure miracle, you are not really living.
By using any psycho active substances, we expose ourselves to all kinds of inter-dimensional entities. These are the entities that devalue life, depreciate life, take from life. You probably have a few friends yourself who fell victims of such “entity possessions” from interactions with drugs or alcohol. Fogginess, loss of self confidence, insomnia, paranoia, emotional outburst, mood swings, depression, physical illness are all symptoms of entity invasions through the use of substances. The good new is that once they are removed, one can feel very tangible changes.
In our society, we often strive to “BeCome” something. Weather it is to become enlightened, become spiritual, become a yogi, become a healer, the list goes on forever. In fact, lots of business savvy new age people take advantage of this “become” boom and make lots of money by creating and selling us fancy yoga services, meditation, healing sessions, sacred medicine ceremonies that cost a fortune, and so on. Instead of striving to become something, we must realize that we already are those spiritual, enlightened, miraculous creature living our amazing lives on this beautiful planet. We don’t need to go far and spend tons of money to get the information that is already in our DNAs. We come to this world with a “full package” of intellect, spirituality,enlightenment and physical perfection. If we could only change our perspectives and see how magically we coexist in this Universe. To be completely free in this world is to be free of all the illusions we pollute our minds with daily. That is a true freedom, to realize our lives as miracles.
Lay down on the ground on a clear summer night, away from cities with big concentration of light. Look up to the sky, stare at it for a minute, feel the mysterious unknown that is above, contemplate on what can possibly be out there in space. If you don’t find that overwhelmingly trippy, I don’t know what kind of reality you live in. Forget the space, just ponder on this for a second. Look at your skin, how come there is skin? How come we can talk and walk, and dance, and breath and have this complex organism that is so intelligent, it heals itself when it gets sick (if you let it, of course . Isn’t that a miracle? Isn’t that a true beauty of existence? Think of quantum physics, the connection between our thoughts and the functioning of our bodies, gravity, dolphins communicating with each other, plants sending signals of danger to one another just before they get killed! Think of technology, music, mountains and oceans, natural beauty so picturesque it makes your eyes water.
Sacred Medicines Conservation…….Article on Sage for Ecolutionist.com http://ecolutionist.com/californias-native-sage-plant-faces-endangered/
Photo by mattmitchell8 via flickr
The California wonder herb, sage, which has been praised by the Native Americans, healers, energy workers, mediums, and just about anyone who values the power of medicinal herbs, is now threatened and endangered. Due to an increase in global use, over harvesting and unpleasant climate change, serious threats now face this California native plant.
Which is hard to imagine, due to the fact that it is not uncommon to see a white sage bundle in almost every conscious household we step foot into. But do we ever wonder where it comes from, how it is grown and how long it will be available for us?
First off, let’s see what science has to say about the “magical” properties of Sage.
British Scientist at the Universities of Newcastle tested 44 people, who were either given Sage oil tablets or a dummy placebo pill. Those who were given the herb performed much better in a “word recall test.” Similar double-blind study of people with Alzheimer’s disease showed corresponding results.Test tube researches have found that sage oil has antibacterial, antifungal and antidotal functions. The volatile sage oil contains alpha- and beta-thujone, camphor, cineole, rosmarinic acid, tannins and flavonoids.
It doesn’t stop here. The reason why we burn Sage is because the smoke that it releases contains negative ions that cancel out positive ones (which, oddly, are the bad ones) and this very procedure neutralizes the energy field in which you are burning it. Negative ions promote alpha brainwaves and increase brainwave amplitude, which translates to a higher awareness level. This also explains the calming effect of sage smoke, which also stimulates the endocrine system and balances hormonal output in a human body.
But because of its positive effects, it is in high demand, and this has led to previously abundant sage fields being completely wiped out. According to Elliot Vega, who has been running a sage business for many years: wild fires, lack of rain and urban development are the main dangers facing the well being of the plant today.
So what can we do to protect this precious medicine and prevent its extinction?
Well first of all, we can use it more consciously. Sometime burning just a single leaf is enough, as opposed to lighting up the whole bundle. Secondly, plant it in your back yard! Sage is one of the easiest plants to grow. Although it naturally likes dry and hot climates, it can also be grown in green house conditions. Outside of Southern California, Arizona and New Mexico, sage should be cultivated as an annual or brought indoor for the winter by repotting seedling into ceramic pots. White sage has gray-green young leaves that turn white as they mature. It blooms during the summer with silvery white lavender-tinged flowers.
You can find more detailed information on growing sage here. Everyone can do their little part in conserving this incredibly valuable plant by treating it with a lot of respect, careful harvesting, facilitating new growths and prayers for the rain.
Days are never the same anymore. Beach, ocean, deserts, shows, love, paintings, sweet girls, sensitive men, sun bleached curls against bare skin…Always learning, always giving, rarely looking back. Take me to places. Travel wide with me. I’ll be in the corner picking strings. I will listen to the vivid winds splashing all over my unmasked wisdom.Back to the civilization I go unwillingly. I don’t think you’re real. Free are the ways. Free shall be the ways. Speeding, chasing the midday star. Early mornings are easy, light. Indecision feels kind and good spirits are floating freely. A never ending highway of thought. Observing the night sky. Shooting cosmic dust filled guns. Playing in the band. Playing in the bid band, helping each other.Exchanging our knowledge. Celebrating existence. Watching the setting sons. I will spend the whole day driving with you because I love you! I read poetry in your lazy gaze. I could guess every word you’re saying with your eyes. I have no idea what is on your mind. Peachy cheeks, lighter shade of lust, sunny side of eternity.