DEEP IN THE HEART OF THE PERUVIAN AMAZON
Ani Nii Shobo is a plant healing center and nature reserve deep in the heart of the Peruvian Amazon which is based on the ancestral knowledge of the Shipibo people. I found it to be the ideal place to reconnect with nature and explored how ayahuasca can help find inner balance for all kinds of intensive healing. Each journey is deeply personal and everyone reacts to the plant differently, but I see it as a tool that can be used for spiritual, emotional and physical healing. I arrived there feeling a bit skeptical, burnt out, tired, and with some physical issues including back muscle pains. After 8 days and a lot of plant work with Mama Ida, ( who you will see in the video below) I've never felt so fresh, re- energized and physically strong.
Unfortunately there are tons of places popping up all over Peru and Brazil claiming to be authentic, when in fact many are just tourist traps not respecting the sacred ancestral traditions.
The Shaman works in two ways in order to provide healing: through natural medicine of plants and Ayahuasca ceremonies. Shamans and “curanderos” use the term “dieta” to refer to this healing and learning retreats with teacher plants and Ayahuasca. Medicinal plants can be ingested or applied in various ways: drinking the extract or infusion, in the form of cataplasms, or through vaporization, in baths, smoking them with tobacco or in boiled preparations, as is the case of Ayahuasca. For a “dieta” to be effective, it is accompanied by healthy, light, fat free meals, abundant in fish, plantains, rice, some fruits and vegetables.
The “dieta” is supplemented with Ayahuasca ceremonies that are held at night and are probably the most important Shamanic ritual in the Upper Amazon. In Quechua, Ayahuasca means vine of the spirit, although it is also called death vine or vine of the soul. The Ayahuasca brew is a powerful detoxifier, also called “la purga” (the purge), allows one to access contents that remain in the unconscious mind, providing healing for the body and mind. Through the Icaros, the Shaman calls the spirit of Ayahuasca, and other plants and animals, in order to clean our bodies, empower our thoughts and reconnect with one´s spiritual essence.
Another aspect that makes the place sacred in my opinion, is their NGO, Nii Juinti which was founded for the sole purpose to preserve the traditions and protect the children of this Indigenous community in order to keep their interest alive for future generations. Their education ensures a respect and preservation of their heritage, lessons in traditional plant medicine, and skills in their craftsmanship for beautiful woven needlework textiles, wood work, traditional cooking and of course ecological care. During my stay I attended several classes offered by the volunteers and met many of the children who were smiling and keen on talking about their culture and love of nature while Mama Ida so cutely sat on a corner weaving. If you would like to help continue to keep their spirit alive for generations to come, please help us by making a donation
I encourage anyone who is also curious or interested in the healing properties of ayahuasca to contact Jose or Andres at Ani Nii Shobo, (email@example.com) and let them know you heard about them from Leila and they will gladly guide you with much more detailed information.
“ La medicina de este pueblo es un saber milagroso que debe prosperar, un verdadero tesoro de la naturaleza, que toca el corazón y nos sana, que enciende la esperanza y nos invita a crear desde el Amor, todos juntos, un nuevo mañana para la humanidad”.