In the days leading up to my first ayahuasca ceremony, years ago, all my beliefs had started to crumble and I was a MESS. Everything I once knew to be true and all I had been grasping onto somehow slipped away and didn’t make sense anymore. I was left feeling confused, empty, and abandoned by God. I was angry and hurting.
I remember arriving to the location where the ceremony would take place. I totally wanted to change my mind and run the other way. I didn’t want to do the ceremony anymore. I was really freaking scared but I chose to stay.
As the night arrived and we all gathered in the small yurt where the ceremony would take place (still feeling nervous, but also beginning to surrender into this choice I had made to receive the medicine of ayahuasca and all that would entail), we waited for the shaman to arrive and I sat in prayer.
I prayed to be released of what kept me from knowing God, from understanding my place in life, and truly living from love.
I prayed to truly love myself.
When the shaman finally arrived and found his seat, we all grew silent, sensing he was about to say something important.
We listened carefully.
Then he said, in his thick Peruvian accent:
“Everyone is looking for the answers to life. Christians and Catholics have been looking for the answers to life, but still… they don’t know for sure. Hindus are looking for answers to life, but still… they don’t know. Muslims are looking for the meaning of life, but still… nothing for sure. Everyone is looking for the answers. Then people come to ceremonies like this, and they think maybe Shamans know the answers… And Shamans, we are looking for the answers too… but again… nothing. Nobody really knows for sure…”
There was a long, potent moment of silence and then he said:
“Okay, let’s have some medicine now.”
It was the most cosmically comical moment.
We were all waiting on the edge of our seats, holding onto his every word, ready for great revelations, all to be reminded that we are ALL seekers. We are ALL in the unknown. We are ALL longing to know God more.
I remember my tension fading away then and feeling a gentle smile form on my face. I softened as I remembered the tenderness, vulnerability, and innocence of being human…
Of being CREATED.
I remembered my place in this universe then (for that moment, anyway): I was here to explore, to grow, to NOT know.
I was here to LIVE this ever unfolding Great Mystery of Life.
The seeking itself is a gift to be embraced.
The longing to know God is itself a gift to be embraced.
To be in the mystery of not knowing is a gift to be embraced.
I let go fully then. I surrendered. I allowed myself to be led into the magic of the unknown and into the infinity of whatever kind of “epic” this world really is, honouring the mystery and majesty of this miraculous (and sometimes messy) life.