Ayahuasca – beyond frontiers 

By Mariana de Azevedo R. Leão
3 February 2018


Ayahuasca is a medicinal beverage traditionally made and consumed by Amazonian indigenous peoples, who see it not only as a cure for physical ailments but also as a means of reaching knowledge through contact with the spiritual world. Ayahuasca contains DMT, “the molecule of the spirit” and is naturally present in the organism of living beings.


Ayahuasca now is going international. Its ceremonies are now held everywhere, guided by whoever is recognized as a healer or a shaman – many of them identifying themselves as (alternative) therapists. Ayahuasca is turning into a must-do in the psychedelic scenes and alternative tribes of our industrial societies – going from traditional and spiritual into direction: recreational drug. Google will help people with virtual guidance when they wish so. There is an aura of illegality around it all. But you can buy a do-it-yourself Ayahuasca kit through Facebook.


People from industrialized countries, especially the younger generations, often feel more or less alienated from their (imagined) traditional roots. Embarking on the Ayahuasca experience encouraged and fulfills the age-old ambition of know-yourself. For a growing amount of people, Ayahuasca delivers in extreme and exotic manners.

A point of concern for the indigenous communities is that the resources are not infinite. The plants required to make the Ayahuasca drink take years to grow. Because of the high demand, nowadays it is possible to walk kilometers in the bush without sight of the plants. In addition, controlling the quality of Ayahuasca becomes much more difficult when unbridled commerce does its ‘polluting’ work.

Link with scieceofthetime trend ‘Identity Formation’ and ‘Experience Economy 21st Century’.