"Everything Is True. You Are Here & There."

I knew perfectly in the moment that I had ripped myself open, exposing a new layer and forcing my body to purge. It was in my Bikram class the morning my journey to Iquitos, Peru was to begin.

Iquitos, as I may have mentioned in words that were typed or formed with my mouth, is unreachable by vehicle. To get to this city in the heart of the Amazon, you either take a boat or fly into it. Entering into it's chaos is a controlled experience. It takes planning. And really, to me that makes perfect sense... As it is the doorway to the center of The Universe.

As I stood earlier in the day (approximately at about 6:30am California time) in a hot room on Seagaze Drive in Oceanside, I kicked my right leg back behind me while holding it my ankle with my right finger tips and stretched my left arm forward. I was in Standing Bow pose, and I felt my chest and spine find perfect balance in a depth of the posture I hadn't ever felt before... And a vision came into my mind while this happened:

My chest and spine were gently split open in an energetic way. The tendons pulled back and the nerves and lungs and heart were all catching a new sense of air. One which made them burn and begin to purge.

Over the day, starting immediately following the class, my body developed the flu. Chills. Cough. Headache. Loss of appetite. I felt as though I was watching my body fall into a deep purge moment-by-moment. Out of nowhere. Sleep and hydration became my two priorities. And the journey down to Iquitos, which started with a slow drive to LAX to catch the first leg of my flight. A drive which I was so sick for that I almost passed out a few times while slowly dragging through traffic. I kept fiddling with the temperature of the car, getting easily cold or hot within just a few degrees.

My body was sensitive. Every sense I have was sensitive.

By the time we were heading up the Amazon River to the lodge where we would be staying for the medicine retreat, I was mentally in a better place with the air generated by the high speed of the ferry whipping at my face.  That night I would be in the medicine space, and I would be ramping up the purge.

I'd decided my starting dose for the week would be "a heavy eighth" of a cup, as I told Malcolm when I sat before him that evening to receive my serving. He whistled a slow icaro, one I hadn't had before, into the cup. He handed it to me, and I took my seat on the non-smoking side of the ceremony house which only held myself and the assistant staff of the retreat. Each were people I'd been on at least one retreat with in the past.

There were just over 40 guests at the retreat. More than half were brand new to the experience.  I was very much a veteran, this being my fourth time in two years down there just to do ayahuasca. But this time would be different. The purging process had already begin. I was more raw than I had been going into a ceremony. Layers had already begin to pull back, which meant the medicine could be more direct and flow where it needed it to.

It had full liberty.

Very quickly, once the lights had been blown out and the icaros had begin their soft crescendo, I was in the medicine world.  Which is to say I was in the deepest parts of my mind.  When you're in the Medicine World, your thoughts connect in milli-seconds, and you process information faster than ever before. The medicine rewires your brain chemistry, and what is at the core of everything produces a sense of logic that is undeniable and beautiful. My emotions stand balanced perfectly, and I understand my power in the connection of The Universe.

 I was watching in my mind the icaros from three dominant-sounding shamans in the room play together. Maestro Don Alberto (the Peruvian shaman) was a star in a fading coral sky. When his voice sang, the star would pop brighter. A gentle straight line connected his icaro to Matt, the apprenticing shaman's star in the sky. His deep voice was sharp, and it too bounced brighter with the emphasis of his words. On the other side of the coral sky was Malcom's voice, singing mostly in English. His star bounced along a line to the other two stars in the sky.

As I watched all of this unfold in my mind, and was processing the synchronization of their energies, I felt warmth and strength swell in my body. And my body convulsed.

I reached down at my feet and grabbed my shallow bucket. For a few moments, I vomited, with the bucket hooked directly under my sharp chin.  All while feeling the warmth and strength grown more so in my body.

"Would you like a new bucket?" asked a male voice.

I couldn't tell if it was my chair neighbor, or one of the other staff.  I took it, and placed it under my chin as well.  I sat there for about 20 minutes with it under my chin. I didn't feel that I was going to vomit, but then my recent episode had come out of nowhere. I didn't know what I purged. It wasn't fear. But it was something my body didn't want in it any longer, as it was blocking that warmth and strength.

Eventually I brought the bucket down to my lap. I held it in one hand for the remainder of ceremony, gently resting on my legs.

I continued to process my thoughts against that coral sky. I could feel my lips and mouth producing pockets of air, continuing the energetic purge. At the same time, my mind was examining every moment of my life and making sense of it all.

It fit so perfectly together.

"Everything is true," my mind said. "If you imagine it, it is true. If it happens in the physical world, it is true. Your thoughts are true. And for a long time, you have maintained your thoughts without the dark fears that haunt many. You've been fearless even in your dream space, unafraid of anything. You are a part of everything. You see all of this now. Clearly. It's rooting into you where you have been ripped open."

"Let everything make sense. You are simultaneously here and there."

This is what I would be exploring for the week.