The image I have of Ayahuascans is one of group activity...what are your thoughts on the matter of doing DMT solo vs in groups?
Smoked DMT, I certainly preferred to be on my own and I suspect that preference will continue. I haven’t smoked DMT in a group setting. Going long and deep with smoked DMT experiences is relative. The autobiographical books truthfully document what capacity of courage or what capacity of commitment I could muster. On reflection, I consider the frequency of commitment was also factor in the experiences. There were occasions where I could sense the presence of an entity before I launched - as though it were patiently awaiting me. And after smoking the potent substance, it’s manner of emergence suggested that was indeed the case. I would feel very self-conscious having someone watch me smoke DMT. I have also wondered/suspected whether some of the experiences imposed upon me were because I was a solo researcher.
My ayahuasca experiences have all been at retreats here in the U.K. I can’t really justify the price of a South American trip or the time away from my family - though I must confess there is something appealing about the authenticity of an Amazonian ayahuasca experience. I have considered trying ayahuasca at home, but based on my experiences (especially with intense ayahuasca experiences) I consider a carefully managed and purposefully designed retreat with due consideration to health and safety is the proper setting. I really buy into the ceremony and the traditional icaros songs. But the actual ayahuasca experience remains very individual - despite the group setting. After the ceremony it becomes apparent that individual experiences are very wide ranging. Speaking for myself, I am usually keen to have a strong experience and it seems that which the medicine attracts knows my wishes and indulges me fully.