Plant and Vapour Baths
In the Peruvian shamanic tradition, plant and vapour baths are used before or after an Ayahuasca ceremony to rid the body of any unhelpful spirits or energetic blockages that would otherwise impair us from healing and receiving the full benefit from the sacred plant medicines.
Plant and vapour baths have been used by the indigenous cultures of the Amazon for thousands of years to:
- Rid the body of toxins
- Ward off harmful diseases
- Relieve insomnia
- Ease the nervous system and reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression and psychosis
Depending on the problems and difficulties we are facing, the curandero will use different plants that are known to have profound healing potentialities for our specific condition:
- Mocura: Used for bestowing good luck, confidence and stopping us from being overwhelmed by the negative judgements of others.
- Piñon Colorado: Traditionally used in vapour baths, this plant is believed to rid the body of bad magic and harm. It is not uncommon for a phlegm to be visible on our skin as negative energies leave the body.
- Baño de Florecimiento: These plants are believed to gives us the courage, strength and power needed to create authentic expressions of our soul’s purpose.
A plant bath involves immersing oneself in a bath tub filled with water and the plant ingredients that the curandero believes will be most beneficial to our healing process. Water is then poured over our heads and intentions are made for how we hope the purification process will positively transform us. These baths will normally take place on the side of the river, so as all the negative energy that is lifted from our bodies can be washed out and transmuted by the sea.
A vapour bath, in contrast to a plant bath, occurs while we are sitting in a chair, naked in a small tent. Water is boiled with the specific plant combination that the curandero deems will promote purification and healing. The water is placed beneath our feet and allowed to rise, creating a unique sauna like experience whilst in the small tent.
The plant and vapour paths are an integral element in the healing ritual’s we will undergo whilst on retreat. We encourage you to participate in them with reverence and respect for their sacred intention and capacity for purification.
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