Ayahuasca ceremonies are usually held at night and last until the effects of Ayahuasca have worn off. After the space is prepared and blessed by the shaman leading the ceremony, Ayahuasca is offered to participants, sometimes split into several doses.
After consuming the Ayahuasca, most people start to feel its effects within 20–60 minutes. The effects are dose-dependent, and the trip can last 2–6 hours.
Those who take Ayahuasca can experience symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, feelings of euphoria, strong visual and auditory hallucinations, mind-altering psychedelic effects, fear, and paranoia.
It should be noted that some of the adverse effects, such as vomiting and diarrhea, are considered a normal part of the cleansing experience.
People react to Ayahuasca differently. Some experience euphoria and a feeling of enlightenment, while others go through severe anxiety and panic. It’s not uncommon for those taking Ayahuasca to experience both positive and negative effects from the brew.
The shaman and others who are experienced in Ayahuasca offer spiritual guidance to participants throughout the Ayahuasca experience and monitor participants for safety. Some retreats have medical staff on hand as well, in case of emergencies.
These ceremonies are sometimes conducted consecutively, with participants consuming Ayahuasca a few nights in a row. Every time you take Ayahuasca, it results in a different experience.
Ayahuasca works on many levels. Some people may experience vivid visions, others will experience immersive thoughts whereby you may feel transported to a memory, others will heal more on the physical level; regardless of the outcome, the medicine is giving you what you NEED which may or may not be what you want.
What happens during the ceremony
Everyone’s trip goes differently. For example:
– Synesthesia. A person gains the superpower to perceive the world around him in a multidimensional way. For example, seeing music. Scientists cannot yet explain this effect.
– Pulsating space. It turns out that things that seemed motionless are capable of changing sizes and proportions before your eyes, coming to life, flickering and flowing into one another.
– A different perception of time. Not only does it slow down, but you gain the ability to transcend time. Time loses its usual meaning.
– Life again. You are reliving the past. Sometimes it’s personal and unique (most often – emotional episodes from childhood). Past life regression is common during a trip.
– Birth and death. Memories of birth and being in the womb are revealed to you. Then you feel your own death and are reborn.
– Clarity of thinking. Tasks that seemed difficult or even impossible are solved as if at the snap of a finger. You feel that before ayahuasca your brain was not working at full capacity.
– Visual distortion. As soon as you close your eyes, geometrically regular patterns and psychedelic compositions appear before your gaze, in which you can usually guess eyes, feathers or leaves.
– Transpersonal experiences. You gain the ability to transcend the physical body and reunite with the spirit of the teacher plant and with what people simplistically call god.
– Increased sensitivity. Colors become brighter and sounds louder. That is why the ceremony should take place far from civilization – the noise of the city can ruin the trip.