Would you visit a Shaman in the Jungles of Ecuador?
The Shaman of the Siona Tribe
Deep in the Amazon Jungle of Ecuador on the Cuyabeno River lives the indigenous community of the Siona tribe.
Each community has a Head Shaman. Our visit to the community has been fortuitous as the Head Shaman is in residence today and has time to see us and explain his ancestral knowledge and his secrets.
We witnessed a cleansing ceremony that lasted for about 5 minutes and two of our group members had their own special cleansing ceremony. He treats the sick, he treats the ones who have been cursed, he treats the crazy ones and the women who are just about to give birth. The pregnant women, 15 days before their due date comes to him so that he can mix up a special potion. On the 15th day the baby pops out,no long labour and no excruciating pain. Guess I was in the wrong place twice in my life, I should have been in the jungle not in the local hospital.
The women of the Amazon, when they are in their early teens, use the bark off a special tree that will allow them to reproduce up until they are 70 or 80 years of age. The Shaman can mix a potion for those women who do not want to give birth.
The Shaman explains the properties of the local medicinal drink called Ayahuasca. It is a hallucinogenic drink that he, in his training, had to consume over a 24 hour period to test whether he can become a true Shaman. For 24 hours he went in and out of trances, flying up to the heavens and then into the depths of hell, seeing evil spirits and spinning out of control. Vomiting and hallucinating and in great pain he survived the 24 hours. Coming down to earth he consulted his Father and with great angst told his Father this was not his calling. His Father encouraged him to continue with his studies as he had seen in a vision that his son would carry on the tradition.
Today at the age of 72 he is a highly respected Shaman of the village and the community with 15 disciples in training for him to pass his leadership role down to.
What an interesting visit this was deep in the Amazon Jungle of Ecuador.
If you enjoyed this article on Ecuador you might enjoy our other articles highlighting our 3 months of adventures in this South American country of contrasts.
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