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You are listening to the Darina lead show. I'm Daryn. I've spent the last 15 years exploring the planet, looking for healthy foods, superfoods, environmental solutions, and I've had my mind blown along the way by the people, the far off places I have been and the life altering events that have changed my life forever. My goal is to help you dive deep into some of the issues of our modern day life, society's fatal conveniences, the things that we do that we're indoctrinated into thinking we have to, even though those things are negatively affecting us and in some cases slowly destroying us and even killing us every week.
I have honest conversations with people that inspire me. My hope is, through their knowledge and unique perspectives, they'll inspire you two together. We'll explore how you can make small tweaks in your life that amount to big changes for you, the people around you and the planet. So let's do this. This is my show, the Darrion Lehnsherr. Everybody, hey, welcome to the show, thanks for tuning in. If you love this episode, please subscribe and give me comments and give me ideas for other topics and guests.
I'd appreciate that. I just want to say thank you for all the love of Down to Earth, the Netflix show that came out, we were number one and we're still in the top ten after weeks and weeks. A lot of love out there. And you know, what I realized the most is that people who may not know of some of these things that are going on in the world are are inspired by the message. And the message is more than just the information.
The message is being received in many different ways. The inspiration, the fun, the levity. We're not hammering points down people's throats and judging people into a different way of being.
We were on the show investigating things and doing it in a light enough way to bring out some information and having fun along the way. Initially, I was nervous when the show was coming out because I've been in this world and I'm familiar with it and I wanted to really get the information out with the experts infinitely more than what it was shot as. And I got to tell you, I really learned a lot because it's a stairstep approach. It's a mission.
It's a journey. So just receiving the feedback from all of you, having been touched and inspired and moved to change is just makes me so happy because it was that culmination of Zach and I's idea, the crew members, the producers and everyone contributing to this thing that bridged not having been exposed to this stuff, to people that have been exposed to stuff and everything in between and done in a very unique way and a very unique delivery system. So I just want to say thank you and please keep passing this along.
We've also had people in the school systems want to show this docu series as an informational educational platform, and that is just the best news ever. So along that line, my next guest is one that we featured in the show, Carlos Tanner, in the last episode at the Ayahuasca Foundation in the village off the Amazon. So if you haven't seen all the way through, this won't spoil it for you. This will give you just a deeper context of this incredibly human that his life was changed by him doing an ayahuasca ceremony.
But also, it's not just ayahuasca, it's ceremony. It's intention. It's other plant medicines. It's preparation for months and months. So I don't want to make this just about the dirty and the active compounds and ayahuasca and all of the stuff. That's just that's one catalyst within this journey and within his journey. And this is a very sweet human. I'm just had the pleasure of meeting him in the field, in the canopy of the jungle, but then getting to know him further.
And I can't wait for you to get to know him further and really hear his story, his story of addiction, his story of just going down the path, what he thought was supposed to be his path when it wasn't. And he's dedicated his life now, starting the Ayahuasca Foundation in two thousand eight so well over ten years ago. Right. So now studying directly with Akutan Daro, which is the shaman and understanding plants, not just the psychedelic plants, but some of the plants that we talked about, cats, KLON, Ruminative Degollado and Tursi, and a bunch of stuff we highlighted in the show.
And there's infinitely more that Carlos is involved with at the Ayahuasca Foundation. So please enjoy and welcome this great guest, Mr. Carlos. How did you end up in the middle of the Amazon at. Surrounded by Kouta deros, medicinal plants, and in this beautiful part of the Amazon, I asked myself the same question you just asked me a lot.
It's the easiest way for me to answer. That might just be magic. But but there is a timeline and there is quite an interesting story about it, to say the least. And that really goes back to two thousand. I got a job working through a temp agency in nineteen ninety nine just trying to like, you know, get by essentially after graduating college with philosophy and art degrees. So I was really prepared for making a big career move with those degrees.
But getting a job through the temp agency, I managed to land this pretty brilliant job where I had nothing to do all day, but I had to sit in front of a computer with an Internet connection because in case someone called, I needed to enter their information into a system online. And that happened like once a day. So I had like seven hours out of my eight hour day that I just had nothing to do. But I sat with an Internet connection and very quickly I realized I wasn't going to be able to do the crossword puzzle and surf the web for seven hours every day.
So I gave myself a project and I was always pulled towards medicinal plants like from my childhood. I don't really know why, but I gave myself a project to research medicinal plants. So I started looking up medicinal plants just like starting literally like searching for medicinal plants and then taking it from there. And I had access to a printer in the office I was working at. So I started printing stuff out and bought a file cabinet and started organizing it.
And essentially I built this kind of library on medicinal plants. But one particular plant definitely set itself apart from the rest. And that was ayahuasca or the plant medicine. This is nineteen ninety nine. There was not a lot of information about ayahuasca back then, but what there was was just absolutely mind boggling to me. I was so fascinated by it. So I did a I like native special focus.
There was a special folder in that file cabinet just for ayahuasca and that magically turned into me getting invited to go to Peru in two thousand with the receptionist from that job. And so in January of 2000, I ended up going down to Peru for the first time and I didn't actually drink ayahuasca. I had the opportunity to, but I wanted I wanted it to be like just right. And I didn't want it to be touristy. And I kind of made a vow that I was going to come back.
And when I got home, I actually got a dream job and got a career. And I thought, well, maybe I'm not going to go back to Peru. Maybe that won't happen. I just stopped thinking about it, at least for a while. And but I had talked about it. My friends had had heard me talk about ayahuasca. They knew of my interest. And that would play out later on because. My first career job, which was fantastic when I got it, started to really, I guess, open my eyes to the reality that I had been conditioned to believe something that really wasn't the best thing to think about in terms of what success meant.
I had been so conditioned to think that success was so monetary. And I now had a job and I made a good salary and I was able to get a beautiful house and drive a nice car and check the boxes. And I was on paper. I mean, great, you know, I'm doing so great with my life, but inside I wasn't doing great. I started to get depressed and I started to feel like, well, this is success, this is what you have to do, you just have to accept the fact that you're going to be dissatisfied with the aspects of your life.
To make money. You have to do that. And and that's how strong the conditioning was, you know. But I couldn't really cope with it. And so I began using drinking more like using drugs and eventually led to being an opiate addict. And I definitely don't think it was by accident that I fell into opiates like I. I wanted to be numb. I had a feeling and the feeling that as long as I kept thinking it and feeling it, I wasn't going to be right.
So I feel like I was like purposely trying to stay in this numb state so I could really tolerate what I've been conditioned to believe was success. But I stopped. I would disappear for a couple of days on a weekend and my friends would be like, where were you over the weekend? And that's that's when you know that you start having a problem, when you're kind of disappearing on binges that culminated in me waking up in my car at like four o'clock in the morning.
Realizing that my car was sinking underwater, I had like water up to my chest. My windows were open, so the water was pouring in. I had no idea where I was. I will wake up and I'm like, what the hell is going on? And then quickly realized, well, I don't know what's going on, but I can't stay in the car, couldn't open the door.
Luckily, I was able to jump out the window, swim to the shore of this river, turned around, look back and watch my car just go completely underwater. To the last memory that I had had was pulling out of the drive of the parking lot of a bar. I'd been at a bar I was drinking and I was taking pills and yeah, that you shouldn't do that. The warnings that they give, there's a reason because I must have just blacked out at the moment.
I pulled out of the parking lot. I drove through this like swamp which had water like two feet and then through a cornfield and then into a river. And I had never been there, you know, and that troubled me so much like it fascinated me and troubled me because clearly there was consciousness at work, but I was disconnected from it. And yet it was consciousness that seemed to be outside of my realm, like I can understand if I drove home, you know, I could understand that because I know my son part of my brain.
No, you know, but I didn't I drove completely the opposite direction down some crazy path and ended up in a river. And it freaked me out. It really freaked me out. I could have died easily, could have died. And that was a really important moment for me, because that's when I realized that maybe I will die, you know, and it doesn't matter how much money I'm making and then it doesn't matter what car I'm driving if I'm dead.
And at that point, I said, I don't care about my career anymore. I definitely care more about my life. That's the most important thing. And whatever I need to do and I knew I needed to do something like life changing, like I wasn't just going to keep going with my life exactly the way it is, but I'll stop using drugs like it does. I knew that wouldn't be possible. Like I knew why I was using the drugs and my life staying the same was not going to fix that.
I kind of at that moment made a declaration that I was going to make a drastic change in my life. Nothing happened right away. But I made the commitment and I'm sure that you've probably done the same thing with almost every one of us has made a declaration at some point to the universe, to ourselves, to whoever happens to be there. But the important part is that we make a commitment to change. And I did that. And then a week later, 10 days later, I got an email from a friend of mine that I hadn't seen in two years.
She was in Peru and she was on her way back from Japan, where she'd been for two years teaching English. And she met these two guys from Russia. They told her that they were working with the current Darryl who used ayahuasca. She remembered that I had told her about ayahuasca back in two thousand and decided to send me an email because she was going to stay with these two guys and go and drink ayahuasca and thought maybe I wanted to as well.
I knew right when I read that the email like this isn't a coincidence. This is what I needed know. And I could I could just feel like this this is getting me back, you know, because before I got that career job, I was OK. And then the career job, I really kind of feel like messed me up. And so what was I doing before that? Well, I was working some temp agency, but I was I was researching medicinal plants and specifically I was researching the ayahuasca.
And now that I make a declaration that I want to get back to who I was before my life kind of unraveled, I get an email inviting me to drink ayahuasca in Peru with an authentic curandero in the Amazon rainforest. Like I made a very another important commitment to see that as the opportunity that I believed it to be and to make it like I turned it into what I was going to use to fulfill that commitment, that declaration I had made to make a change in my life.
So it became like a lifesaver before I even booked the flight, you know, like I knew that I was going to change my life. And it did. And I went to Peru in twenty three in June, 17 years ago, almost to the day, and and changed my life dramatically. And I never did heroin again. I never touched opiates. And my life just massively changed forever. And during that trip, the current dero saw in me what he said was my path and like explained why as a child I had been interested in medicinal plants because it was my path to be a plant doctor or a court on death row.
And he invited me to live with him as his apprentice. But it's just like what your example is. If you're doing something that is completely not aligned with you, there's a little bit of. Sacrifice that you have to give up and that added up over time, puts you in the position of where you were kind of, I would assume, desperate and kind of a bit lost and in the face of going, yeah, but I've got all these things.
It's like, man, that's just not the formula for happiness. Right? Well, I wish that they would teach us a better formula as we grow up, you know, not to not to blame our society, to be totally honest. It's such a complex thing. And any attempt to reduce it, I realize now, like, I'm I'm trying to reduce it as if I could just blame it on my career. But of course, there was so many things happening, just like there are in every person's life know and and where we might point to something.
Maybe that's at that point I was projecting on to my career some other stuff that was happening. And it was just very convenient for me to do that, because once I did get down to the Amazon rainforest and I did ingest and attend ayahuasca ceremonies, I very clearly saw what I would call the root of my afflictions. And that was way before I had gone to school. That was that was way before I chose a major. That was way before, you know, those are my childhood traumas that I didn't even remember.
And and it was I would say that it was definitely those traumas that infected my self perception with an inaccurate interpretation. And essentially it started language in my head that I wasn't good enough, that that I didn't deserve, that I was bad, you know, that that people shouldn't love me because I did these things. And only to then realize, thanks to working with ayahuasca and ceremonies, that there was were completely inaccurate interpretations and that I was an innocent child.
But I couldn't make sense of experiences that were painful to me.
And and through the work with Ayahuasca, I was able to release those traumas by reinterpreting the experiences accurately or at least from an adult understanding. And that was massive. And so, you know, to say like, oh, I used heroin because my job wasn't fulfilling. Yeah, that's that's not that's part of it. And maybe that because of the timeline, you know, it's easy to say, well, I got the career job and then a year later I started using heroin.
It must have been from the career job. And definitely there's elements of that, without a doubt. But just to be fair, and especially if anyone's in it, in advertising, I'm not trying to throw you guys under the bus as if to say, like, this is all a bullshit job or something. I had stuff going on that was deep seeded and then once it played out like that, that's where the resonance was the worst. And I think that if you have a childhood trauma where you're struggling to think that you're good enough and then you find yourself in advertising, which I could say preys on that, you know, like they they're not idiots about that.
The idea that you're not good enough by something, you know, that that is definitely kind of been built into the current advertising system, that somehow if you buy this product, you'll be good enough. Somehow, if you buy this product, you'll find the satisfaction that you're lacking that piece of your soul that you're missing. It's just one click away on Amazon or something like that. And and so so in terms of like trying to understand, like, why didn't this align?
It makes more sense when you have when you contribute the root cause, which was my trauma as a child and we are all dealing with those childhood traumas or those misinterpretations of experiences when we're unable to accurately understand them.
For all the listeners, I want to I want to unpack the ayahuasca thing a little bit. When you made it to to Peru, you did it right. You went to the to the land of the plants and the medicinal plants and the curandero and I highly recommend, if anyone, just as a caveat, if anyone is thinking about doing this, do your homework. Obviously, Ayahuasca Foundation is a is a option. And you just really need to there is a lot of charlatans, even in the Amazon, so opportunistic people also trying to make a living and going through their own journey.
They're not they're not infallible. So that being said, OK, so you made it to Peru. What was that? What was that like? And and maybe I know it's very, very personal, but for all, because there will be a lot of people on here that maybe have or have not even heard of what the psychoactive, beautiful kind of God molecule is. So maybe just unpack that a little bit and your story.
Yeah. First you hit the nail on the head when you said, like, I had set myself up, had I decided to work with ayahuasca before my life and spiraled down, I doubt that the meaning of the experience would have been so profound. And I think that's a really important thing to understand is whatever you put into it is what you get out of it. And it's quite simple. So I needed to have my life saved. And that's what I was putting into when I went to that first ayahuasca ceremony.
I had it you could call it a desperation, but I would prefer to just call it a faith. I had a faith that what I was about to embark on was going to rescue me from. The spiral downward that almost killed me and and that's why I feel like my experience matched it, because not everyone has the same experience. In fact, the spectrum of people's experiences is so incredible that it's almost impossible to understand. And it's taken me a long time.
But in 2003, I made my way to the Amazon rain forest and I thankfully had a connection. So my friend was there. She had already met these two people, Roman and Eugene, who who had already met Don Juan, who was the current arrow, just in case people are listening to Darrin. And I have been saying, Cordeiro, that's like another way of saying shaman. They do not use the word shaman in Peru. So what they call them is a current area, which literally just means a healer.
And this particular curanderos name was Don Juan Tango Up IIMA and Ramon and Eugene, where the two gentlemen that I met and because they had been working with this healer for the last year, I already had some trust. Daryn mentioned that you you want to be careful. And so that enabled me to to have a little bit of trust, like, OK, this guy, I'm not just blindly meeting a stranger. I had my friend and I met these two individuals and we went together to the ceremony and but no one told me there was no retreat's.
There was no tourism. This was in two thousand three. So it was the term ayahuasca tourism didn't exist. So no one prepared me. There was no like do try to do this. And I was a full blown drug addict. You know, one thing that I did when I got to Peru, like literally the night I got to Peru, I was out on the street buying weed because you can do that easy. And and then as soon as you buy weed, well, now you have a person.
And so quit very quickly I realized, oh, you can I can get value. So within like an hour of being in Peru, I had weed and Valium and. And so I was I was smoking weed and and taking Valium the right up until the ceremony and yeah, I do not recommend that that was a bad idea.
But again, I guess is part of the whole story now. So that ceremony was oh, man, that was a rough ceremony and probably pretty dangerous looking back.
You know, like that was probably dangerous for me to do that. But I threw up like 15 times. I crapped my pants. At one point I just went and took my underwear off and threw it into the jungle. And it was a horrible experience. But it was the most incredible experience as well, and there were so many factors that were just kind of mind boggling, like talking about setting things up the condo, Don. One used to be the coordinator for a Tewari community ATWA.
A tribe is the tribe in northern Peru on the Ecuadorian border. He was there, Curandero, and then he came to Iquitos because he had these visions that he was going to meet his wife there. And his stories are incredible. But for whatever reason, he was there and the chief of the tribe that that he used to be with was there. Now, I have no idea. I'm in the Amazon rainforest for the very first time and I'm going to an ayahuasca ceremony for the very first time.
I don't know. A tribe tribe's chiefs aren't always there, you know, so I just kind of assume that that's just, hey, this is how things are when you go to an ayahuasca ceremony. But they are not. It's a very, very rare that the chief of a tribe happens to be in your ayahuasca ceremony. And I never saw him again, but he was there for my very first ceremony. And that played a really important role because even though I had no way of communicating with them, he didn't even speak Spanish.
He was a presence. You know, he was beyond like human person. And he had clearly drunk ayahuasca many times. And at one point I was outside curled up in the fetal position crying, wondering why the hell I wanted to do this. And he came out. And he just looked at me and waved me back, and that was it, he just looked at me for a second. I stopped crying for a second, like realizing that he's looking at me.
And he just was like, come back in. And without even thinking, I just, like, got myself together, like, OK, I got to do that. And I got myself back up, kind of like dusted myself off and went in. And right then things changed, like, right at that point I wasn't like frightened to death anymore. It wasn't the worst experience of my life anymore. At that moment.
I was like, oh, man, this is this is fascinating. And what I was thankful to realize was that my my mind, you know, my perspective, my attitude, my my interpretations, all of this was the determining factor. And so thankfully, like, he had kind of to me, I was saying, like he was he was telling me to, like, be a man, you know, I was literally crying like a baby at that time.
And and but then once I said, like, OK, be a man. Oh. And the whole world changed. My whole experience changed. And that was really an important lesson for me. And because at that point I realized that. You know, this wasn't like my experience prior to that wasn't ayahuasca, it was me with ayahuasca and me I could change the me. You know, I could change my attitude. I could change my way of perceiving or interpreting.
And that would have drastic results in my experience. And and so where I had been previously thinking as I was in the fetal position, I'm never going to do this again. This is the worst experience of my life. Then after the ceremony, like, I'm going to do that again, but I'm going to do it differently, you know? And so the second ceremony I went in and I said, tonight, I'm going to be a man.
And I noticed, like, my posture changed, you know? And I was like, I'm not going to be afraid. I'm not going to be afraid tonight. And right off the bat, the very first vision I had was this. This is like a man with a big sombrero came out and just started turning into a demon like this hideous creature in front of me. And I just said in my mind, like, I'm not going to be afraid.
And he then like, switch right back to this nice old man and was like, oh, you're not going to be afraid. Oh. And then check this out. And he took his hat off and all these beautiful creatures, like, came out of his hat and they were floating around and flying and smiling and and I was like, this is amazing. And then they all kind of flew around after him and he like, waved goodbye and walked off the scene, like into the darkness.
And that set the tone for the whole ceremony. And really, like the rest of my journey, where I fully began to realize the importance of. How we are and how that relates to what we think is the world around us and it was such an important lesson.
So for years, maybe all, most of my life, people have been asking me what kind of foods you eat, what kind of exercises do do, what kind of water should I drink, all of these things and so much more we put into a 21 day program. So that can take you through a theme every day of knowledge, action, and then eating this delicious meals, working out, getting support, anchoring in these new habits. So you can do what?
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That's B A, are you K.S. Dotcom backslash, Darran D A R I and I know you will enjoy. So what is ayahuasca? Um, ayahuasca is, first of all, a medicine that's made by a vine called Mysterious Kapi, which is called ayahuasca, it's called a lot of different things, but the name that has tended to stick is the Inken name for which literally means a spirit and Waseca Vine, Spirit, Vine. And I think that's probably why the name caught, but also catch was the national language of Peru.
So ayahuasca is made from the ayahuasca vine and that is mixed with an admixture plant. Typically that admixture plant is a corona, which is psychiatry, overeaters, and chemically speaking, it is believed that the ayahuasca vine is known to have Hamala Alkaloids, which are known to be monoamine oxidase inhibitors or metalized. They prevent the creation of an enzyme in your stomach called monoamine oxidase, and that is an enzyme that breaks down certain chemicals. One of the chemicals that breaks down is dimethyltryptamine.
And dimethyltryptamine is the ingredient that is found in the admixture plant. And so essentially what chemists would say is happening in an ayahuasca medicine and the experience is an orally activated dimethyltryptamine experience in the sense that the Hamah and Hanmin and the eyes of the vine prevent the dimethyltryptamine from being broken down in your gut, which allows it to go up to your brain where it stimulates your pineal gland and your pineal gland is thought to also produce its own dimethyltryptamine. And not everyone and no one really knows what dimethyltryptamine does exactly.
But it has been referred to as the spirit molecule. And there are reports that suggest that at the moment, like forty nine days in the development of an embryo, when it becomes a fetus, there is a flood of dimethyltryptamine from the pineal gland. And at the moment of death, there is another flood of dimethyltryptamine in the pineal gland. And so that has been associated with the spirit entering and exiting the body. There's a lot of wonderful literature, and if you're interested in just learning more about dimethyltryptamine, you can read DMT, the spirit molecule, or even there's a documentary about it.
I personally, I don't deny any of that. That is definitely hard science and I believe in it. But I don't I'm not satisfied with that. Explaining your experience because people's experiences are so dramatic to me, a better way that I used to understand it is to talk about it as an amplifier of sensory perceptive ability. And that to me, it works more in. Resonating with my personal experiences, but it also works more for taking advantage and empowering yourself through the experience.
We all know that you have a visible spectrum. I remember it as a kid. Roy Biv, red or yellow? Green, blue, indigo, violet. Those are the colors, vibrational frequencies that we can see beyond that invisible. We can't see them, but they exist. We just don't have our eyes are limited biologically. We can't see beyond that. Another example are audible spectrum, also a frequency of sound. Maybe some people have a dog or are aware that there's a thing called the dog whistle.
You blow it, you can't hear it, but your dog can. That's a great example. Your dog's audible spectrum goes into a higher frequency than your limitations of biology. So there's a spectrum of what amount of reality we can actually perceive, and that is determined by the biological limitations of our sensory perceptive organs. Well, what ayahuasca does is it amplifies them. It expands the possibility for sensory perception.
And so in doing so, it allows us to create a hypersensitivity state, is what I call it. We become hypersensitive in the sense that we can see beyond the visible spectrum here, beyond the audible spectrum, feel, taste, smell, all of the senses, not even just senses associated directly with sense organs, but some of the more subtle senses like our intuition, things like that, all of them become amplified. And so in that hypersensitivity state, we just naturally gain a greater awareness.
And so whatever we focus our attention towards, we can understand more. We can be aware of more and usually are focusing our attention on yourself. And so you can become more aware of what's going on. What are the issues with you and specifically with regard to trauma, which is what we were studying with the scientific research that we did last year. Trauma happens in a hypersensitivity state. Trauma is usually an experience produced when there is tremendous fear, tremendous negativity and fear will produce a hypersensitivity state as well.
Because evolutionarily, if you are very scared, then your survival might depend on having a little bit better eyesight or a little bit better hearing or a little bit better intuition so that you can get yourself out of the experience that's causing you that fear. And so fear naturally causes a hypersensitivity state. And if you have an extreme hypersensitivity state and you create a belief into a truth in yourself. You will not be able to change it until you also match that hypersensitivity state or override it, and so ayahuasca essentially allows you to achieve a hypersensitivity state without fear and in doing so allows you to dictate how you.
Release. Detrimental truths that were formed at a time when you were in a hypersensitivity state through fear and also to replace or to ground new truths that are beneficial to you. And that is a tremendously powerful potential for that medicine. And there's very few medicines that I know of and none that I have experienced that can can do what ayahuasca does. So it's really, really fascinating. But in terms of like the actual experience, it's very common to have visions.
They call them visions where you see what appear to be beings, entities, and that sometimes they're interacting with you in a very, very direct way. And sometimes you can communicate with them and they can offer guidance to you. It's it's just absolutely fascinating. Really, really fascinating. God, this was twenty three, man, and it's two thousand twenty and. Nothing is more on my heart than the need for light in the world, the need for expanded consciousness, the need to see beyond, and to also just reveal that which is the unconsciousness that is seeming to just show up all over the place right now.
It just make no sense. And so you founded the Ayahuasca Foundation. It's your studying not only ayahuasca, but other medicinal plants. You're working with Akunin deros. You're doing tree planting programs and reforesting or helping the awareness of and the support of medicinal plants and the Amazon itself. So there's some very real powerful themeless. And I was at the foundation in the center. Beautiful space. So what are you doing now to kind of ground this into some very necessary medicine moving forward in the world?
So much, I mean, I guess where we're all in that position. But I look back and. If I did so little, it seems like I did so little. This just happened, ayahuasca just kept telling me what to do. And I know that might sound weird if you're not familiar with ayahuasca, but there's messaging. You know, there's communication that happens in these ceremonies. And it's and it's, again, like another nod to what you were saying.
I've I've never taken and would never even think about taking ayahuasca if it wasn't in a ceremony that the the terms are inherent. Know, if you say you drank ayahuasca, you mean you drank ayahuasca in a ceremony. And the fact that there is such a rich tradition surrounding the use of ayahuasca is one of the greatest gifts that we have. To be honest, the substance can't be separated from its methodology and ideology, the tradition surrounding its use. And we have so much to learn about that.
But creating the Ayahuasca Foundation of all these pieces had to come together. All these people have to come together to make that happen, building that center, all of that. It was like a magical journey. It really was. That center was founded by the Granton Foundation, a charity organization based in Ohio, founded by Michael Moran and his son, Christian. And they wrote me an email in 2013 and said, hey, if we pay for it, will you build a research center?
And I like to say I did that, you know, like, yeah, I there was certainly my involvement, but there were there were some big, big things that happened that were just really part of a bigger plan. And and that's what I see happening. That's what I've been watching happening for over a decade. The Ayahuasca Foundation started in two thousand nine. And it just seems like there's this bigger and bigger plan unfolding.
And that plan is really to go in the most general sense, return the earth to harmony, but more specifically to reconnect the human race to nature, to the earth. And and sometimes, like you said, in an ayahuasca ceremony, if you if you go into it with the wrong attitude, ayahuasca will kick your ass and. That in that moment of kicking your ass is a real opportunity to change the way you think, especially with regard like you said, like if you have too much ego, it'll squash you like a mosquito in a heartbeat.
And and that's the reality of where humankind is in relationship to nature and the earth. The Earth could wipe us out in a heartbeat. It would. And it wouldn't even blink. And that's what we need to be respecting. That's that's what we need to be reconnecting to. And that's the source of the intuition that we have. Like where what is the intuition actually speaking? Well, it's there. If it is nature, it is the consciousness of this much greater being that is guiding us and helping us to realize what we should do next and how we should proceed.
And that's really what I see happening in ayahuasca is is part of it. But not coincidentally, there is a movement happening now. This February, there was a thank you plant medicine movement, and it was a social media movement where tens of thousands of people started telling their stories about how plant medicines helped them and their last year, John Hopkins University, a prestigious medical institution, declared that they would be building a psychedelic therapy research center. Imperial College in the U.K. also made the same announcement.
They would be building a research center devoted to understanding and studying psychedelic therapy. And you can now start to find degree programs where you can become a psychedelic therapist or be certified in psychedelic therapy. And and so that to me speaks to something really important. Know, and we've kind of I watched my life spiral, but collectively, humankind has watched our lives spiral downward. And and what saved me was reconnecting with nature through the use of an ancestral medicine and an ancestral tradition.
And and that's what I see as happening now. And just look at our perceptions of indigenous culture now. You don't have to go far back. And unfortunately, just our parents probably who were watching whatever that show was, I am too young, but where the Indian character, the Native American character's name was Tonto, you know that which is a Spanish word for the Lone Ranger like that wasn't so far back. Our parents were watching that show. And their perception of indigenous culture was that indigenous people were primitive savages who are uneducated and stupid.
And now, just one generation later, we flip that so hard where we value indigenous culture, we view them as wiser than us, like they have wisdom that we lack the amount of respect. And then look at where we were just a generation ago with our relationship to to the environment. Yeah, whatever we can do, whatever we want, we're humans. It's our planet. Chop down the forests, mine in the in dig holes, blow things up, whatever, whatever, pollute it all.
And then we're here one generation, maybe two generations later, preserve the rainforest, save as much as we can, do what we can. A lot has happened. And so even though we've watched things spiral downward, we can also see the seeds that have been planted to to grow new growth and to get us back into balance. And plant medicine to me is is at the core of that because plant medicine is essentially the greatest tool we have to directly connect to the consciousness of the earth and the consciousness of natural elements of which we are.
That's the essential message of it all, is that we are not foreign entities. We were made just like plants and we were made just like the animals. And we have that intuition and that capability of instinctual understanding within us as long as we can put our attention towards it. Or as you are talking about developing your intuition, if we're working those organs out, those sensory perceptive abilities out, then we're going to get there further and further. Plant medicine is certainly going to help us along the way.
So what are some of the services now that you guys have at the foundation? Like what are some of the things that people if they were to show up and come in and what kind of retreats and ceremonies and. Education and study what the kinds of things that are going on there. We work with Shapiro Curanderos from the Spiegel Tribe in the Amazon rainforest and they work in their tradition. So that's another important part of it. And that was kind of cool when you guys visited us that we were able to show you like some of the other aspects of it, because so much attention is given to ayahuasca and we've been talking about ayahuasca.
But even still, ayahuasca is just one component of this entire massive body and pharmacy of plant medicine. And there's so much that can be done. And so what we provide on all of our programs is what we consider to be a complete treatment process. According to the shippable ancestral tradition of healing called coriander ISMA or plant medicine, like, for instance, if you're going to start a plant medicine treatment, then the first thing you want to do is cleanse or digestive system, because you're going to be taking ayahuasca.
You're also going to be taking other plant medicines and your digestion is the beginning. It's the core of your immune system. So the first day of an ayahuasca retreat, whether it's our eight day program, our two week retreat, our three week retreat or even our courses, we have two educational courses called the four week empowerment course and the eight week initiation course. All of them start the same way, which is by taking a purgative. And the purgative that we use first is resin from a tree called Sangre de Grado.
It's actually a pretty famous plant in Peru. Its very famous people use it topically. It's like the hydrogen peroxide of the jungle. You could say it's called Sangre de Grotto because if you cut a Sangre de Grado tree, it looks like it's bleeding. It's a dark red sap that comes out of it. And we ingest that. Most people are familiar with it topically. The way that you use hydrogen peroxide, although even hydrogen peroxide can be used if by ingesting it, although you'd want to use food, great hybrid hydrogen peroxide.
And so we use it as a purgative. We had just a small amount of it mixed with water and it induces vomiting. So after you would ingest it, you drink a lot of water and essentially flush out your digestive system. And that alone, like Sangre de Grado, is just an amazing plant. And so it can help you with acid reflux, leaky gut ulcers in all of these digestive issues that so many people have now can be treated with somebody.
Grado But the essential part is that you want to cleanse your digestive system. And so once you cleanse the digestive system, now you're going to get more nutrients out of the food that you eat. So many people have a problem with their nutritional intake because they have a polluted digestive system. Well, even if you fix all of your nutrients and your nutrition, it's still going to be a struggle to get back to that cleanse of your digestive system if you don't specifically target it.
So we just get it out of the way, right off the bat. And then you take medicines, the entirety of the program. In the case of the healing retreat's medicine that's made from a plant called Pinyon Colorado, mixed with swell the world is what they call it. We know it to be mistletoe. And that combination of the medicine that we call the blood brain remedy because it increases your circulation of your blood and your oxygenation of your blood.
And that inevitably ends up increasing your mental acuity or improving your mental capacities. And so you take that every day. And then a second medicine that we use is made from turmeric, which is now been getting a lot of attention as an anti inflammatory, which is just a great medicine to take to help your immune system, because inflammation we're now starting to see is at the root of so many people's problems. And the third plant is a plant that in English, I think we call the sensitive plant.
It's a mimosa plant. When you touch the leaves, they fold up, which is a way of understanding a plant like plant language of plants. It's a sensitive plant. And so it helps to expand sensitivities. And I talked about the benefits of being in a hypersensitive state. You talked about the benefits of focusing and developing your intuitions. This helps to develop that. And so you take these three medicines every day, twice a day during the entirety of the program.
This is in addition to the ceremony. So you have a ceremony every other day, typically an ayahuasca ceremony. And then there's a central nervous system cleanse, which is a plant called Cherrix Sonangol that literally helps to cleanse your central nervous system, which again helps to boost your immune system and. A respiratory Klans with a plant that goes up your nose, which is an extract of a plant called Malcorra, which is similar, it's like jungle garlic. You could also use garlic as a cleanse for your nasal passages or your respiratory system.
And later on, we use a stronger one called such a mango. And later on, we use a stronger digestive glands called oak, which you might be familiar with because it's also very well known in Peru. So essentially, there's a cleanse of all the systems, every system in the body on a physical level. And then the ayahuasca ceremonies work on a spiritual level. And then some of the treatments, including, one, the vapour baths that you got to experience, the vapor baths are really powerful.
They open up all your sweat out your toxins. We use a group of plants in the vapour baths boiling them. And so you're inhaling medicinal plant vapors as well as absorbing as you're releasing toxins. And what I've seen so many times is that is a tremendous emotional cleanse as well. People will break down crying. Sometimes they will unlock something. And it's clear that our physiology and our emotions and our mental state and our spirit are all they're not separate entities.
They're well connected. And then the smoke baths, which is something that you also did, the smoke that specifically is removing negative elements, attachments, negative energy from your system. And smoke is actually now we've come to understand smudging the wood in the Native Americans of North America use sage typically. So you'd burn Sage in a space to cleanse that space smudging. Well, you can do that to yourself, too, and that's what you are doing. Although we were using a Peruvian plant called Pullo Santo.
So there's an entire package, you could say, of all these remedies, and they all collectively work together to provide a holistic treatment process. And like I said, we've got an eight day, two week, three week, four retreats, and then a four week and an eight week educational courses. And those involve Debtors' Plant Debtors', where you ingest a plant usually during a fast or exclusively during a fast. So you're ingesting a plant and nothing else goes into your system, maybe in an extract of a root, for example.
And and then it's enabling you to connect specifically with the consciousness or the spirit of that plant or that tree. And that is something that you keep with you forever. It's like you make a friend or an ally with that plant. And so those are offered on our educational courses. And actually, we just started offering on our three week retreat as well. But yeah, it was pretty cool. I don't know where Zack was coming from, but one of the first questions he asked me was, do you guys do plant Yetta's?
And I was like, Wow, Zack, OK, because Plant does aren't that well known, but they're really the core of the shamanic practice. Making spirit allies is another way of saying it, you could say. And so for educational courses, it's it's like a. The important part is it's a necessary part of that. Now, we've reached a part of the show where we address society's fatal conveniences and how we can avoid falling into them and being a victim of them.
I define fatal conveniences as the things we may be doing because the world we live in makes us believe we have to. And even though they may be serious time or tricking us into thinking they're good for us, the truth is they're not fact. They could be slowly harming us and even killing us. Welcome to the fatal convenience today. This one is something that we all know about and we all probably suffer from it, and that is social media.
There's actually a lot of good things about social media, but it seems as I'm pouring through some of the research that I'm going to conclude it for you right now, that if you are looking for validation, if you have insecurities of your sadness and you don't want to be sad, you're angry and you don't want to be angry, you're fearful and you don't want to be fearful. You feel like you need to be liked. All of that stuff.
You are going to have negative aspects of using social media that's just straight out going to happen. So the one article I read from the University of Pennsylvania basically said it's the thief of joy, and that's from a brain chemistry. So there's this whole phenomenon around folo, which is essentially fear of missing out. So as you see other people posting the perfect pictures, the perfect vacations, the perfect model, boyfriend or girlfriend, the perfect life, then you feel like you're missing out.
So therefore, it's setting you up to feel less than to be anxious, to be upset that you're not experiencing the kind of life that you see other people having. So that was a great study where they tracked all the participants on social media. And the bottom line is that the people that had consistent breaks and didn't use it as much, simply the people who limited social media said that they felt less depressed, less lonely than the people who are using it constantly.
So if you are using that dopamine hit of you need more likes, that neural connection of dopamine that's sitting in your pocket that you're reaching for a hundred times a day, that means that you are looking for the feel good chemicals of dopamine. And so that's a really dangerous place to be because what is the big, big dopamine spiker on the planet? It's cocaine. That's why when people get addicted to cocaine, they just get this massive, huge rush of dopamine.
And this is like a mini cocaine device. If I could be so bold to make that jump, but bear with me. So that's that's the danger. We're stimulating our dopamine receptors. We're comparing ourselves to all these other people. So it's creating a scenario where we constantly are comparing and setting ourselves up for absolute depression. If you're susceptible to it, if you're also looking to get improvements from your life, from a lot of different sadness, fear, upset, sadness in any other way and even anger.
Right. So we all know the trolls, right. The people sitting behind their computers. That phenomenon I haven't seen in the literature. So I don't know what that's about other than energy begets energy. So if you're angry, sad, fearful and resentful and judgmental of people, you will sit behind your computer screen and be a troll to generate more of that which you are already swimming in. Right. So that is a just a one thousand percent projection when people are rifling these nasty comments, these mean comments, these racial comments, these political comments that are just there to incite a reaction, that's a projection on their part.
They are experiencing all of that and want to bring you down to. So if you're vulnerable to that, then you're definitely going to be susceptible. So there was also a study done in twenty eighteen by the public access. And the bottom line is, as young adults increase their social media, they definitely move down a depressive state. So there is 50 percent women essentially and 50 percent males, and they compare the lowest time per day spent on social media.
And they realize certainly a direct correlation and potentially causation for the amount of time spent on equals the amount of. Ability to depression and the fatal conveniences we're looking towards our satisfaction, our likes, our dopamine hit, but we're setting ourselves up because you are complete, you are lovable, you are perfect and who you are and what you are. But if you're putting that out there on social media, then that is something that you're setting yourselves up to get knocked down.
It absolutely will happen. And other things to consider. If you have addictive personality, this can absolutely cause addiction. We all know it. Well, I'm I'm addicted to it. There's times I, I have to say, for God's sakes, stop it. And so now I've put limits on myself once in the morning, once at night, got a lot of messages. So I have to get through a lot of stuff. So twenty to thirty minutes, twice a day.
That's it. I can't do any more. It makes me absolutely crazy. So I mentioned that triggers insecurity and also enhances your fear of missing out, which I that University of Pennsylvania study alluded to, so increases the depression which we all know now, and falling behind in tasks. So of course it's the great procrastinator. Right. So if you don't want to do something that you have to do or should do, then easily jumping on social media takes you out of your world and into many other people's worlds.
And then, of course, the overload of information. So your attention, your brain is trained to not receive and slow down and read and take in information, but but continue to move forward. And certainly privacy is a big issue. So social media and privacy, you can't really delete very hard to delete accounts on Facebook and Instagram. And if you are leaning towards needing to get validated, then you are definitely setting yourself up for psychological damage that goes deeper and farther into those unknown areas of trying to heal yourself or mend yourself from those issues.
These are some things to consider and also can expose people to violence and scenes that they're they're not typically involved with. And so there's a lot of things to consider. The bottom line is this is how you do it. You have to set up a structure where you only you limit your time. So if you're at work, don't jump on your social media if you're susceptible to addiction. And also these other things, depressive disorders and things like that, do a good assessment of yourself and realize that you're going further and deeper down these territories.
That is not going to help you. Now, listen, social media can be great, but you have to be filled up. You have to be secure in yourself, and you have to not look for social media to give you your own outlook. Now, I use social media where I'm super clear about what I want to contribute to. I want to help the people. I want to help people's lives in a healthy way, and I want to help the planet.
And this is a type of marketing. It's a type of information. It's a type of authentically sharing. If you find yourself tweaking over posts and need perfect hair or makeup or outfits all the time, then you're limiting who you are and sharing just what you want it to be to the world. So I really double down on authenticity. So being myself, totally, completely. And I'm sharing that and hopefully that will lead to inspiration. That's my attention on social media, is I'm going to let it rip, just like I did on the show.
You guys saw my craziness, my silliness and all of that stuff. Well, I'm going to wear the same things, what I care about, what I'm already behind, what I like to support and things like that. So just consider that, get clear about your purpose. Get clear about why you're here more and more and more realize it's not a perfect target and you don't always know. But get clear about what you want to support and use social media for the common good.
So I hope that helps and give yourself guidelines on social media once, twice a day. That's it. OK, I love you all.
That was a fantastic episode. What was the one thing that you got out of today's conversation? If today's episode struck a chord with you and you want to dive a little deeper on a variety of topics, check out my live deep archives on Derrinallum dot com backslash, deep dive.
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