Ayahuasca Open Style

This site provides information on the ritual use of entheogens and will also provide links to my painstakingly designed PDF downloads. Get them while they are free!

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Location: Den Haag, Zuid Holland, Netherlands

Saturday, April 09, 2005

An introduction to the Ayahuasca ritual form:

Transformational work with Ayahuasca is a relatively new occurence in the western world. Ayahuasca and other entheogens have been used for millenia by indigenous people, so they have arrived as part of a religious or 'spiritual' tradition. In our transformational work, we have adapted the form or 'ritual' in which Ayahuasca is used to accomodate modern views. Such views have been shaped by the influential work of psychologists, such as Freud and Jung.

For our transformational work, we have chosen models that provide a clear method of understanding and dealing with the symbolic events that present themselves during an entheogenic session. Stanislav Grof's model of the Birth Perinatal Matrix, is a powerful and comprehensive attempt to place spiritual needs in context with psychology. This model is simple, comprehensive, and practical. We refer to Grof's book "Beyond the Brain" for a better understanding of the topic.

The Birth Peri-natal Matrix:

According to Grof's model, psychedelic experiences, appear to trigger emergence or re-experiencing of material that originates in the biographical details of the birth process. There are many areas that this model seems to explain that conform not only to a psychological explanation but also to spiritual world views. Unlike religious doctrine's however, the BPM model presented by Grof puts trauma at an age that precedes the formation of the ego. Thus such traumas may be universal conditions.

The BPM's pre-date the emergence of identity because a foetus has no language in which feelings can be expressed, which also explains why such sensations may be hard to remember. The traumas dating from the BPM are major factors in the formation of identity, and pain or fear from this early stage of life may be triggered by physical sensations, as if the mind stores unpleasant memories as sensory events.

Grof points out how traumatic experiences from the BPM, relate not only to the formation of identity, but to political and social behavior, thus these traumas possibly play an influential role in mass psychology.

Ancient ceremonies in a new setting:

In shaping our Ayahuasca ceremonies, we keep in mind the various expressions of BPM material amongst participants. In attempting to create an awareness of these forces, we continue to refer to them, and to the abundant literature, thats supports Grof's findings. Ayahuasca provides us with a powerful tool with which to examine the dynamic forces of our psychology. The rituals that have grown around Ayahuasca are meant to provide a safeway to enter into the emotions that stem from our early impressions, as well as matters pertaining to consciousness in general.

Distinct ritual forms:

Our ritual forms are very different from those proscribed by the Brazillian Church of Santo Daime, and are also distinct from the ritual forms associated with Native American rituals, which are performed for westerners as highly dramatized versions of the original, and are therefore politically incorrect. In searching for a 'ritual' form, we continue to ask ourselves how the first men and women would have set about learning to enter the visionary world, yet it seems reasonable to inquire into the modern sciences as well as the age old traditions. In doing so we are possibly paving the way towards a new human psychology.

You can get more information and downloads off my old site, which requires Flashplayer though:Ayahuasca Open Style

Agreement for participation:

The following text is an agreement between the organisers of AOS ritual sessions with Ayahuasca and other entheogenic substances. For those wishing to participate in rituals for therapeutic purposes it is absolutely essential to have read, understood and signed this agreement. Participation in rituals is not possible without it! An adobe.pdf version can be downloaded for printing with the following link: www.a-keys.nl/ayahuasca/images/downloads/agreement.pdf

Dear friends and participants in the Ayahuasca ritual:

Ayahuasca is a combination of chemical substances (amongst others DMT) and not entirely legal under most nations 'enlightened' laws. For this reason we wish to inform everyone participating in the ceremony of a number of important legal and medical precautions: Ayahuasca consists of two main ingredients, Dimethyltriptamine a hallucinogenic substance, and Harmines and/or Harmalines (Beta-Carbolines), that have an MAO inhibiting effect. Mono-amine Oxydase Inhibitors prolong the activity of the hallucinogen DMT, by temporarily preventing it's breakdown by enzymes in the stomach. In the combinations that we use such MAO inhibitors have no permanent effect. The materials are derived from natural plant substances, according to traditional Native American recipes. In the case of Jurema, the source material is the root bark of the Mimosa Hostilis (DMT) in conjunction with Harmines derived from the seeds of Peganum Harmala (Syrian rue, an MAO inhibitor)

In the case of Ayahuasca we work with Harmalines from the South American plant Banisteriopsis Caapi, and the leaves of Psychotria Viriidis (for DMT) There is ample information on these substances and plants all over the internet and we recommend running a search for them, check out the following link:www.erowid.org

MAO inhibitors have a very subtle effect on the mind (on their own they do not produce any hallucintions, but they effect Serotonin levels that change our state of consciousness ) Therefore we recommend a safety margin for their use: abstention
from the following substances for three days prior and three days after a ritual involving Ayahuasca or Ayahuasca analogues:

-Alcohol in any form
-Blue cheeses or any fermented substances containing moulds
-Drugs such as Ecstasy, MDMA, 2CB, Cocaine, Heroine, Amphetamines, Methadon, etc.
-Medication such as Anti-Biotics or Anti-Depressants and Anti-Psychotics

You are expressly forbidden to participate if there is any illness, physical or mental, without consulting the organisers of the Ayahuasca ceremony. You are also forbidden to participate in the case of pregnancy. If in doubt we recommend you abstain (this does not apply to headaches, common colds and menstrual cramps)

Please keep in mind that Ayahuasca remains active after the ceremoby has been closed, we recommend that you stay the night and sleeping accomodation will be available, so that you do not have to drive, or make your way home alone.
I have read the above and agree with it.

Ayahuasca rituals have a therapeutic effect, therefore it is possible to have a strong reaction to the substance. We regard the Ayahuasca as a catalyst for this reaction, not the cause of it. Ayahuasca catalyses psychic and physical material
from our own biography and experience (memories) For this reason the effect is unpredictable: some will have ecstatic experiences while others may have frightening or emotional experiences, and these effects may be different from ritual to ritual. The Ayahuasca ceremony offers a safe environment with lots of support (setting) in which emtions may be expressed freely, and participants receive and give each other lots of support. Due to the subjective nature and power of the experience differences of opinion are common amongst Ayahuasca users. In order to protect the organisers and participants we wish to emphasize this agreement between organisers and participants:

I am participating voluntarily and of my own free will, in this ritual, in which Ayahuasca a known hallucinogen is being used. I have studied the terms of this agreement, and agree to its terms. I release the organisers from any responsibillity for damage to my person following the use of the substances described above, or my participation in the ceremony.

I will acquaint myself with the guidelines for behaviour found on this site and if I have any questions or doubts about them I shall consult with the organisers before the ceremony. Participant:
Date of birth:
Adress/Telephone nr/e-mail adress:

I agree to all of the above document: Proceed to the guidelines page to learn about conduct during an Ayahuasca ceremony