Inner Journey Notebook
|Language of origin
A “what to expect” guide for first-time ayahuasca users paired with accounts from the author’s extensive shamanic experiences in the Amazon.
• Describes how to prepare for the first ceremony, what to do in the following days, and how to maintain a shamanic healing diet
• Details some of the author’s own ayahuasca experiences, including an intensive trip in 2009 when he underwent seventeen ceremonies
• Describes the many other plants that are part of the ayahuasca healer’s medicine cabinet, as well as his icaros, healing songs.
Since 1999, Jan Kounen has regularly traveled to the Peruvian Amazon to participate in ayahuasca ceremonies. At first, he was just a curious filmmaker, but over multiple trips he transformed from explorer to apprentice to ayahuasquero and often found himself surrounded by other foreigners coming to the jungle for their first taste of ayahuasca medicine. Knowing how little guidance is available to beginners, he naturally offered them advice.
Part visionary ayahuasca memoir and part practical guide, this book contains the same step-by-step advice that Kounen provides to first-time ayahuasca users in the jungle. He explores how to deal with nausea and details the special preparatory diets an ayahuasca shaman will put you on. These often last for months and are necessary to achieve life-transforming results and receive teachings from the plant spirits. He also explains how it is far easier to maintain such restrictions in the jungle than in the city.
Detailing his own ayahuasca experiences, Kounen further describes how ayahuasca transformed him. He tells of his meetings with Shipibo healers, including Kestenbetsa, who opened the doors of this world for him. He evokes many other plants and foods that are part of the ayahuasca healer’s medicine cabinet, such as toé and tobacco, as well as his icaros, or healing songs. This guide should be your first step prior to committing to ayahuasca.