Frequently Asked Questions – Ayahuasca Healings, Native American Church in America
Is this Legal? Am I legally protected?
We are completely confident that we are legally protected to hold ceremonies using the sacraments of Ayahuasca and San Pedro, while also protected under the legal umbrella of the Oklevueha Native American Church. You will receive the full legal protection to sit in any of our Ceremonies by registering as a member of our Church, which is a requirement from all participants of our Ayahuasca Retreats in America.
For a detailed explanation, please see our legality section, here: https://ayahuascahealings.com/ayahuasca-church-in-usa-how-are-we-legal/
What is your religion?
We are an independent branch of the Oklevueha Native American Church (ONAC), which is a non-dogmatic, earth-based religion. The fundamental premise of all indigenous spirituality is to honor and respect Grandmother Earth (Matriarchal), Grandfather Sky (Patriarchal) and all of our descendants. From ONAC’s website:
“The practicing of Indigenous American Native Religious spirituality empowers and strengthens those who participate as they create balance and remove toxic thoughts, actions and substances from their lives. The ceremonies and medicines we work with are powerful and assist people to overcome dependencies, self-defeating behaviors and can assist the physical body to gain strength in healing many physical ailments.”
Details about the history of Oklevuaha NAC can be found here: http://nativeamericanchurches.org/oklevueha-native-american-church/
Details about the ceremonies we believe in as central to our Religion can be found here: http://nativeamericanchurches.org/indigenous-american-native-religious-ceremonies/
What is in the Ayahuasca brew?
Our Ayahuasca adheres to the highest standards of purity and ethicality of which we are capable, and by the standards to which we hold ourselves. Brewed from ethically sourced plants from the Peruvian Amazon, our brews will contain only Ayahuasca vine and one of two DMT admixtures: Chacruna and/or Chaliponga. We can guarantee that our brews never contain the dangerous admixture datura (toé), nor any other admixtures.
Who is the Shaman?
For the inaugural retreats, our shaman will be Marc “Kumooja Banyan Tree” Shackman. Kumooja has 8 years experience working with sacred plants and indigenous ceremonies around the world. He has worked with and learned from the Huichol of Mexico, the Shipibo of the Amazon, and the Q’ero of the Andes. Marc’s bio can be found here: https://ayahuascahealings.com/marc-welcome/
Why are the retreats $1497 to $1997?
First of all, our retreats do not cost $1497 – $1997. You have the right to contribute or donate any amount you wish to our Ayahuasca Healings Church, and the money you donate to us is not an exchange for a service, such as our Ayahuasca healing retreats. We offer our spiritual retreats as a service to the community, and to humanity, and we do so for free. Any money you donate to us is for helping us cover our operating expenses, to help us further our Spiritual Mission, and every dollar you donate to our Ministry is dedicated towards the healing of our people and our planet.
We have received many complaints about our suggested contribution range of $1,497-$1,997 for our 4-day healing retreats. To emphasize, you can contribute any amount you wish. This is nothing but a suggestion. We have an ever-increasing, and overwhelming amount of interest in our retreats and there is no way that we can accommodate everybody. That is why it is one of our highest priorities to build more Ayahuasca Healing Churches in America. Buying land in the United States requires a lot of money, and building a Healing Center & Church requires a lot of people, and of course, financial resources.
Since you have the right to contribute any amount you wish, it’s important that you also understand, with our intentions to build more spiritual healing centers around America, we depend solely on your contributions to make that a reality.
You can donate $100 if you’d like, and we never turn away anyone based only on their ability to meet the suggested contribution. For every retreat, we accept courageous, inspirational candidates regardless of whether or not they are able to meet the suggested contribution range. At the same time, we are a brand new church and ministry, and with our ambitious visions to build these healing centers near every major city in America, we currently dependent upon your generous contributions in order to meet expenses, grow and share this medicine with those who need it most.
Many have falsely claimed that our ceremonies “cost $2,000” or that “we only serve the rich”. We find these claims to be unfair and inaccurate. We also reject comparisons to the cost of a retreat in Peru as unfair and unrealistic. Expenses to run a center in Peru, for land, food, staff, medicine, everything about it, are significantly lower than they are in the United States. The costs, therefore, required to open and maintain a Church (analogous to a Peruvian retreat center, let alone build more Churches) are significantly higher in the US than in South America.
To make this medicine and healing available to everybody, and not just those who can meet our suggested contribution range, we also offer a scholarship program for those who are severely financially constrained. You can apply for the Scholarship program by clicking here.
Can I make a contribution even if I don’t plan to attend?
You are absolutely more than welcome to make a contribution at any point in time, to support our Church and Spiritual Ministry. Please note, however, that all donations are accepted, “without consideration.” Therefore, please do not make a one-off donation with the expectation of being admitted to a retreat, without first going through our application process. We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone based on factors of safety, liability, and our own personal judgment.
Is my contribution tax deductible?
Yes, all contributions are tax deductible through the Oklevueha Native American Church. Please email us for details at: support [at] ayahuascaheailngs [dot] com
How should I prepare for ceremony?
Please be sure to visit our preparation page, here: https://ayahuascahealings.com/ayahuasca-ceremony-trip-preparation/
What is the climate like in Elbe, Washington in January?
The winter climate in Elbe will most certainly be very cold and very rainy. Please be sure to dress appropriately.
What will the purge be like? Should I bring a bucket?
The purgative effect of Ayahuasca and San Pedro is one of the most beautiful aspects to these medicines. Beyond the physical benefits of expelling toxins and harmful substances from the body, these medicines allow the participant to purge out emotional and energetic trauma.
However, many sensationalist news articles and journalists often hype up the experience by saying that one “vomits for hours.” This is most certainly not true. While it IS possible to feel nauseous for hours and have difficulty purging, (which we refer to as experiencing a “block”) most drinkers find that once they do purge, they soon feel much better, physically, and most definitely, energetically. Many people commonly gratify that they feel “lighter” after the purge. Often, the purge is over in just a matter of minutes.
What items should I bring? What items do people usually forget?
In addition to warm, waterproof, winter proof clothing; we recommend that you bring a headlamp. Headlamps are much more handy (and harder to misplace) than a traditional flashlight. We recommend that you bring some small, personal, sacred ceremonial items. Crystals, sacred necklaces, objects of power. It is usually quite helpful to have such an object, which can provide a sense of grounding and familiarity. For those who wish to record their experiences and visions, a journal is an excellent item to bring.
Do I need to bring food?
All food will be taken care of for you. We are able to accommodate most any kind of food allergy or dietary preference. We recommend that you avoid bringing your own food, since the food we will provide you will be energetically tuned and prepared to allow you to get the most possible out of the Ayahuasca experience.
What do I wear to the Native American Sweat Lodge?
You will need to wear a swim suit for the sweat lodge. Please use your best discretion and to prepare to dress conservatively. Ladies are recommended to bring a wrap or t-shirt.
Will the tipis have electricity?
No, the tipis do not have electricity.
Can I bring my camera?
Yes, this is allowed as long as it doesn’t become a distraction.
I need to leave the retreat early. Is this allowed?
For safety reasons all attendees must stay until the end. We will be opening and closing the retreat together. If you cannot commit to attending the full retreat right now, we advise to change your retreat date for a different weekend.
I have a question that was not listed here, where can I ask that?
Thank you for your sincere interest in the healing work we are doing. Before you contact us with your question, please make sure you read our Ayahuasca Retreats in America page, which gives the complete details of our Spiritual Healing Retreats. If after reading that page you still have a question, please feel free to email us using the contact page here.
To all our relations.
The Ayahuasca Healings Family