There isn’t much magic left in the world today, which might explain the widening appeal of ayahuasca—the plant has made Joe Rogan’s “Scholar List” and apparently changed Sting’s life and saved Lindsay Lohan. But not everyone can come to the Amazon. Some believers think the solution is to bring the plant, and the ceremony, to the rest of the world. Tanner’s Ayahuasca Foundation, in conjunction with a Shipibo medicine man named Don Enrique, is training curanderos from all over the world how to lead ceremonies back home. So let’s talk briefly about things as they are in the real world. And then we too will cross over.[more inside]
Thomas Leveritt at Harper's Magazine writes about his experience participating in an ayahuasca ceremony. A pleasingly (and humorously) well-written, detailed account.
They say that one night of ayahuasca is like ten years seeing a psychiatrist.
Stepping Into the Fire is a documentary about transformation, healing and the Amazons....Ayahuasca, shamanism, human future and a long lost science from ancient civilizations. [more inside]
Surrendering to the Spirit Vine. Artist Alex Grey (previously) describes his experience with "the champagne of ayahuascas."
Ayahuasca: A Strange Brew. "Can a psychotropic jungle potion cure the existential angst of the McMansion set?" Previously.
Kira Salak is a writer who embodies an old-fashioned spirit of adventure. She has kayaked the Niger River solo; during her time in Africa, she freed a slave. On another trip, she sampled Ayahuasca in the Peruvian jungle. At the age of 24, she trekked alone through the tribal violence of Papua New Guinea. Her work is a wonderful alternative to the blandness and narrowness of contemporary consumer society, in which there is nothing new to be discovered and everything can be reduced to lucre.
Hell and Back: "Deep in the Amazon jungle, writer Kira Salak tests ayahuasca, a shamanistic medicinal ritual, and finds a terrifying—but enlightening—world within." Interesting tale found via this interview with Charles Grob on the potential therapeutic uses of psychedelics. The legal status of ayahuasca in the US was recently discussed here.