Personal Experience

Sulfur with a Hint of Chocolate

The first cup of ayahuasca I drank was dark brown, molasses-y and surprisingly sweet, about the viscosity of cough syrup. Bad taste? What are they talking about? I thought, a bit smugly. That was the first time. I did not yet know how each subsequent cup would become more difficult to down, tasting more and…

Family Secrets in Ayahuasca’s Light

Seven days into an ayahuasca retreat in the Peruvian Amazon, I’m not liking—no, let’s tell it straight—hating the guy who sits across from me in the circle. Mike’s smugness, his closedness, his know-it-all vibe are driving me crazy. And I know, reluctantly but well enough, that the qualities I am triggered by are actually inside…

Dieta Diary

I’ve been doing a series of plant dietas under the guidance of a curandero in the Peruvian Amazon. Every few months I fly into Iquitos, catch a moto out to Enrique’s place, and commence a retreat with whatever plant he’s chosen for me this time. Dieta involves drinking an extract of a particular ‘teacher plant’…

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