Next Retreat April 5-7, 2019 Rocky Point, Mexico 3 Days, 2 Ceremonies Only 8 Spots!
2019 Retreats January 2019 - FULL
April 5-7, 2019 3 days/ 2 ceremonies 2 spots left
July 25-28, 2019 4 day /2ceremony trip 10 spots
September 20-22, 2019 3 day/ 2 ceremonies 10 spots
November 1-3, 2019 3 day/ 2 ceremonies 10 spots
Ayahuasca preparation in the jungle 2010 Me in Peru with the Maestro, Don Alberto, on my first trip in 2007 to work with Aya
"An epic experience with beautiful souls and gorgeous surroundings" Nov Retreat Participant
Before I tell you more about visionary medicine and Ayahuasca in particular I want to tell you a bit about my own experience with this powerful medicine and why it is so important for me to facilitate these retreats.
Over the last 20 years I have been on a healing journey. I have tried many different types of methods from energy therapies, to body therapies, conventional medicines to some really out there stuff. Not only have I been a client of these therapies but I've actually taken the time to become a practitioner of plenty of them as well. While all of these different therapies have had a hand to play in my healing none of them come close to the insight, breakthroughs, and overall healing that I experienced working with Ayahuasca. I learned more about myself and did more healing in one week (5 Ayahuasca ceremonies) than I had done in all the years leading up to it. This medicine is truly life changing. Ayahuasca took me to places in myself I never would have allowed myself to go, not while I was in control. Besides the emotional-mental healing, my spiritual growth and understanding has deepened in ways that I could not have imagined. I have become a clearer, more compassionate, joyful and more connected person through the teachings of the medicina. That is why it has been my dream for many years to share Ayahuasca with others. Usually, you have to fly down to the Amazon and trek into the jungle to have an authentic experience or find your way into the psychedelic underground here in the US where you have to worry about shady legality issues. I wanted to create a safe, authentic, legal, affordable, supported and accessible way for people to take part in this medicine if they feel called. That is why these retreats mean so much to me and why I have structured them the way that I have.
IT IS NOT FOR EVERYONE! I cannot emphasize this enough. Working with Ayahuasca is extremely challenging, can be very uncomfortable, even painful physically, mentally and emotionally. Ayahuasca can take you to the heights of ecstasy as you experience true oneness and to the depths of your own inner hells. Each experience is unique and while there will be lots of information to follow on this page, no one can tell you what your experience will be. Every time I drink is different because Ayahuasca doesn't give you what you want but what you need. Once you've read this page if you feel called to work with Ayahuasca then fill out the contact form and I will be in touch.
What is Ayahuasca?
Ayahuasca is a vine that is found in the Amazonian basin of South Amercia. Ayahuasca is also the name of a brew or tea used by the native people's of the Amazon for millennia. The Ayahuasca vine (Banisteriopsis caapi) is combined with leaves from the Chacurna (Psychotria virdis) shrub (or other DMT containing plants) to create the tea. Ayahuasca translates to "vine of souls", "vine of death" or "vine with a soul". The native people's of the Amazon use Ayahuasca for healing and spiritual work .
How Does Ayahuasca Work?
Banisteriopsis caapi (Ayahuasca vine) has alkaloids that act as MAO inhibitors, meaning they inhibit an enzyme, monoamine oxidase, which usually breaks down certain alkaloids before they can pass through the blood-brain barrier and reach the brain. Psychotria virdis (Chacurna leaves) contains DMT (N,N-Dimethyltryptamine) which is a psychedelic compound that is produced by living organisms. Psychoactive tryptamines such as DMT are usually too delicate to be active orally and would normally be broken down by the human body in minutes. MAO inhibitors, such as the harmine and harmaline found in B. caapi (Ayahuasca), prevent the DMT molecules from breaking down, allowing them to enter the brain intact. It is only when combined that these two plants produce the pronounced visual, auditory, and physical alterations that lead to the profound experience of the Ayahuasca journey. Because Ayahuasca is an MAO inhibitor it is especially important that anyone participating in ceremony not be on anti-depressants as it can, in some instances, lead to serotonin syndrome. Here are some articles about the science and research of Ayahuasca: Brain Science of Ayahuasca Ayahuasca and Meditation change the brain similarly How Ayahuasca affects your brain Veteran's story Ayahuasca use for PTSD The Ayahuasca Ceremony under the Microscope Snapshot of Medical Research on Ayahuasca
What Effects and Benefits Can I Expect?
Ayahuasca can have many side effects physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually that can also double as benefits. Each person's experience will be different, not only person to person but ceremony to ceremony.
Common physical side effectsand benefits during a ceremony may include: naseau, vomiting, diarreahea, sweating, shaking, burping, passing gas, yawning, stretching, and retching. On a metaphysical level this purging is seen as the beneficial release of negative influences and energies from the body. On a more conventional level these purges are medically beneficial, as it clears the body of worms and other parasites.
Emotional side effects and benefits may include intense emotional experiences as well as releases. You may cry or laugh or feel any number of other emotions as you work through old traumas, visit inner fears or experience connection with all creation. Because Ayahuasca is an MAO inhibitor many people have looked to it for help with depression.
Mental side effects and benefits may include visual and auditory visionary experiences. You will notice I do not use the word "hallucinations" because that words carries with it the idea that what you experience is not real or somehow made up. Just because how you perceive in ceremony is different than everyday perception does not make what you perceive "unreal", "fake", "made-up" or "imaginary." You may also experience profound personal insight, release of old beliefs, negative patterns, bad habits and a deeper understanding of who you really are.
Spiritual side effects and benefits may include A deeper understanding of your connection to everyone and everything, a "God" experience, near death experience, interacting with spirit of all sorts including guides, angels, dead relatives, power animals, Masters, nature spirits, aliens and Ayahuasca herself.
The experiences that you have in ceremony - insights, visions, teaching, etc - will often lead to changes in your life. How successfully we integrate our experiences back into our everyday life is up to us and that is one of the reasons that I have created so much support before, during and after the retreat. Be aware that intense experiences of this nature tend to change us, our priorities and motivations and can lead to us making some major changes so take that into consideration when deciding whether or not you want to participate.
You just never know what you will experience. Every time I sit for ceremony I know I will be in for a surprise. Through the years I have spoken to and sat with many people who have participated in ceremony and they each have their own stories. While we may have common themes and sometimes even have spirit helpers in common the experiences are unique to what we need. I know a woman with cancer who walked in a garden with God and talked about her fears for her son should she die. I know a man who took a tour of the Universe while on the toilet (he was purging heavily but that didn't stop Aya from taking him and his toilet along for the ride). I know people who have journeyed into inner hell realms within themselves to finally let go of fears that have been holding them hostage. I, myself, have visited the asylum in my mind and worked to release myself from the constraints I placed on myself with certain beliefs and ideas about control. What you learn in ceremony will change you so never go into this work lightly. As Aldous Huxley said in his cult classic Doors of Perception: "The man who comes back through the Door in the Wall will never be quite the same as the man who went out. He will be wiser but less cocksure, happier but less self-satisfied, humbler in acknowledging his ignorance yet better equipped to understand the relationship of words to things, of systematic reasoning to the unfathomable Mystery which it tries, forever vainly, to comprehend"
Who Leads the Ayahausca Ceremony?
The leader of an Ayahuasca ceremony is called a maestro or maestra. They are the guide, teacher, and conductor of the ceremony. The leader creates the space in which this sacred and intense healing work takes place so it is of vital importance to have someone of integrity who knows how to hold safe space for multiple people. It took me 8 years to find someone close to home to work with. The maestra that will be leading the ceremonies during these retreats has been working with Ayahuasca for over 8 years and trained in the Amazon with the highly respected Shipibo Shaman Don Enrique. Her ceremony format is semi-traditional meaning that it includes both live singing and recorded sacred music from around the world. Having experienced both traditional ceremonies and this semi-traditional style I can tell that nothing is lost in the translation. The ceremonies I have had with the maestra have been as powerful as any I had in the jungles of Peru. She works with a simple Ayahuasca recipe that uses Ayahuasca vine and Chacruna leaves and nothing else. The maestra will have an experienced assistant there as well. for added support. Having a safe, loving, supportive environment is key to being able to fully focus on your own experience and healing requirements and with this leader you can rest assured that's exactly what you get.
Who Shouldn't Participate?
There are some medical and medicinal contraindication to participating and that is why we have an application process that includes a medical form. It is important that you fill that form out thoroughly. If you happen to have a medical condition or are taking medication that would make the ceremony unsafe for you then we will speak with you and make a decision based on your particular circumstances. The Maestra has the final say as to who is allowed to safely participate.
What's Included in the Retreat?
3 Day/2 Night Retreat Includes: + Intimate Group (Max 10 participants) + Support from Alexcis throughout the experience - preparing, during and post- the retreat +Preparation coaching -
Emails that go into detail about how to prepare yourself physical, mentally and emotionally for the retreat including discussion on diet, intention and what to bring.
Group Q & A Session the week before the retreat
Inclusion in a private Facebook Group for retreat participants
+Private shuttle service to and from Rocky point leaving from Tucson (specifically A Transformative Touch parking lot). Arraignments can be made for airport pickups or from Phoenix (extra charges may apply). Drinks and snacks will be provided. Leaving 9am Friday with Return around 4pm Sunday. Please be aware that travel times are all approximate and will change depending upon traffic and the border crossing. +Visit the town of Rocky Point for picking up souvenirs and pharmaceuticals on our journey down Friday. +Healthy and delicious meals - There are diet restrictions when working with Ayahuasca. All the food will be gluten-free, vegetarian, dairy-free, low sugar and low salt. Aya friendly snacks will be provided on the trip down. The meals that are included are lunch Friday, breakfast and lunch Saturday, and breakfast and lunch Sunday. We do not eat dinner before ceremony so there are no dinners included. Water, tea and coffee will also be provided. +Lodging in Rocky Point: We will be staying 2 min walking distant from the beach in a gated community south of the town of Rocky Point. It is a large beach house with plenty of space, patios and a beautiful view of the sea from the top balcony. +2 Ayahuasca Ceremonies lead by our Maestra. Ceremonies take place from 9pm-3am Friday and Saturday nights. Everything you need for the ceremony will be provided. + Guided discussions during the retreat to prepare for and share after ceremonies + Time to Reflect: You are given plenty of time on Friday afternoon and Saturday to rest, reflect and process. + Post Integration Coaching-
1 Hour Private RESET session with Alexcis scheduled within 1-3 weeks after returning (in person or via Zoom) to work individually on what you experienced and how to integrate it into your everyday life
There will be follow up group meetings and a supportive community for you to join online (for those who live far away) and in person if you live in Tucson.
We will be keeping in touch with you for several weeks by email with questions, suggestions and tips on integrating your experience
Continued inclusion and engagement in the private FB Group
You will also become eligible for special events such as week long retreats in other parts of the world and private monthly local events that will only be open to Aya retreat participants.
4 Day/ 2 Ceremony Retreat Includes
All of the above plus group workshops on the rest day to help deepen and integrate the Aya work.
**You will need a passport or passport card to travel into and out of Mexico**
Benefits of our retreats: Opportunity to work with profoundly powerful medicine. All inclusive 3 day/ 2 night experience including transit (see above). Retreats are close to home so no long, costly flights needed. Small group size with lots of support before, during and after to help you get the most out of your experience. The support of an experienced mental-emotional therapist to help you integrate and process. Short duration so you don't need to take 7-10 days off work to travel, saving you time and money. Modern comforts like electricity and flushing toilets (often not the case in the jungle). No need to worry about shady legality as Ayahuasca is legal in Mexico. Beautiful location near the beach. No language barriers. Costs a fraction of what you'd pay to travel to and stay in South America.