After more than three years away from the brew, I drank Ayahuasca here in Costa Rica last night (Monday 26 Nov) at Rythmia (https://rythmialifeadvancementcenters.com/). I’m pleased to report that I had a beautiful experience filled with love and light. My previous session was early in 2015, and although I smoked DMT in 2016 (a session extended with Syrian Rue tea), there is nothing quite like Mother Ayahuasca for doing the deep personal work and making the real breakthroughs.
I was here at Rythmia late last year, 2017, and that was the first time since I began working with the brew in 2003, that I sat in circle but didn’t drink. The reason for my abstinence was simple and direct. That same year, in May 2017 and again in August 2017, I had suffered a series of massive epileptic seizures which, in the case of the August 2017 incident led to me being put into an induced coma in the hospital and placed on a ventilator for more than 48 hours (https://grahamhancock.com/back-from-the-gates-of-death/).
Following that, there was some concern of a negative interaction between Ayahuasca and the anti-convulsants I must now take every day for the rest of my life. Subsequently, however, I had the opportunity to discuss my condition (and meds) with some of the leading researchers in the field and was assured that I could drink the brew safely without the haunting fear of inducing further seizures.
So… here I am at Rythmia again with my beloved wife Santha at my side, and last night we had a truly magical session
I feel restored in my health and my energy and have a much better grip on what I know my priorities must be. The medicine tonight will be stronger, and stronger again on Wednesday, and strongest on Thursday night. Likely it will become challenging, but I’m so glad to be here with a great group of people and feel like I am undergoing some kind of rebirth. Close to 100 of us drank together last night. That is a BIG group, and normally I prefer to drink in smaller circles. But they have such expertise at Rythmia, the facilitators have such a calm reassuring presence, and the ceremonial space is so beautiful, that everything worked together perfectly to create a synergy of joy, peace and love. Who could ask for anything more?
Rythmia is, unashamedly, a luxury resort, and I make no apologies for that. I’ve taken some criticism for coming here from those who believe Ayahuasca should be made available free of charge, or always drunk in austere circumstances, and while I understand where that criticism is coming from I simply do not agree with it.
Although I’ve yet to encounter a place where Ayahuasca is offered free of charge, I’ve walked the walk in the past 15 years and drunk the brew in some very austere circumstances — some in the heart of the Amazon rainforest. I am grateful for every experience, and I honour all circumstances in which Ayahuasca is made available so long as the shamans or facilitators are well motivated.
Nonetheless, if Ayahuasca is to play the part it can play in the transformation of Western technological society and our re-integration with spirit, then Rythmia is an important part of the process. Why? First because many people who are curious about Ayahuasca and are thinking of giving the brew a try, also have fears about drinking in physically uncomfortable settings. Then there are those who have medical concerns and wonder if their health is up the rigours of the brew. Rythmia provides a setting in which people troubled by such concerns can give themselves permission to work with Ayahuasca for the first time. Rythmia is fully legal and licensed by the Costa Rican government as a medical facility offering the brew, and there are medical doctors on Rythmia’s full-time staff who are here to monitor the health of participants and to provide reassurance and back-up if needed. Then, in addition, it is very pleasant the day following a session to occupy a comfortable room, to be able to dive into the pool and chill out, and to enjoy good, wholesome organic food. Such facilities cannot be provided free of charge and if we are to have successful and safe Ayahuasca retreats then those retreats must be run on a sustainable model. No point in creating a wonderful retreat only to have to shut it down a year later because it’s not a sustainable business.
I wish Rythmia well therefore, and hope that it continues to go from strength to strength. I intend to come here every year, so long as the universe allows.
Will report back tomorrow on how tonight’s session goes.
Love and light