Now that I've been at this for a while, I am noticing some pretty distinct patterns in the Ceremony space. I would like to share a list of the most common (broad) experiences I have seen so far when Psilocybin Mushrooms are the Plant Spirit we are working with. The details of each will differ depending on the person, but in general there are a lot of similarities. Sometimes, however rarely, people experience all of these things in one Ceremony. Those are usually the 12-hour long experiences and requires a certain kind of Facilitator/Participant dynamic. Although to be real, just when I think I have a grasp on all things Shamanic, I get thrown a curveball and learn a few big new lessons lol. I am sure there is a new "type" of Ceremony right around the corner for me to learn about!
Remember, we come to Ceremony to connect with the Divine (within ourselves). The experiences I describe here are natural byproducts of this connection being made.
One last note: you can only go as deep as your facilitator has gone. They cannot take you to places they have not themselves been (usually). This is why it is so important for Ceremony Facilitators to be well versed in doing their own work in the Ceremony space and why I recommend working with Shamans and Medicine People exclusively.
Getting Unstuck. This is the most common experience in Ceremony, but it is usually combined with some of the others. When we feel stuck in our lives, and I know that you know exactly the feeling I am talking about, Psilocybin Ceremony can get you unstuck. This means there is energy in your body or field that needs to be cleared so you can move forward. Sometimes it may even be that there are self-defeating core beliefs holding you back that are brought to your attention and released during the Ceremony. Common beliefs are "I am not good enough" "The world is a dangerous place" or "I am not lovable".
New Perspective. This one is my personal favorite because, even though it seems like a small thing, seeing a new perspective and feeling or knowing it at your core, can change your life completely AND easily. For example, if you have a traumatic event in your past and you are unable to get past it, you may be shown a new perspective on the trauma. Perhaps you were taken through a slideshow of your childhood, right up until the trauma, and shown that you *needed* that traumatic event just so you could have the opportunity to overcome it. That journey of overcoming it has made you strong and resilient, making it possible for you to do the bad ass things you have done as an adult. Now that you have this new perspective, and you can truly feel the gratitude for the trauma, it no longer burdens you, and you can find your joy or whatever thing that has been missing from your life. Another example would be gaining a new perspective on why you overeat. You think you know why, you have done all the appropriate work around changing your eating habits and self esteem or whatever it is you think you need to work on, but during Ceremony you gain clarity that you eat simply to feel good. That starts the cycle for you to dip in energy (a "high" period creates a "low" period), requiring you to get another high through eating just to feel normal. In Ceremony, you may experience this cycle 100 times, to the point where you could never consider forgetting it, and in that your perspective on food is forever changed. Thus allowing you to change your eating habits permanently AND effortlessly! Never underestimate the power of a new perspective. Everything in your life can be impacted by changing just one perspective.
Letting go. A lot of times, the only thing that holds us back in life is the inability to let go of something that no longer serves us. This may be a core belief, a trauma, a full belief system, a person who has departed from this life, a relationship, etc. Ceremony offers you the opportunity to let go of whatever it is, with full closure, and it becomes something you never come back to cling to. It's just gone... This one is easier said than done. Letting go is hard!
Healing. A Ceremony where considerable healing takes place is very specific. It's also not something that has any rhyme or reason. What I mean by that is if you come to me with cancer, you don't necessarily need a physical or energetic healing, you may need to let go of the resentment that manifested the cancer and the cancer disappears on it's own. Often times, I am not even allowed to touch certain physical ailments because they serve a greater purpose or lesson for the person/family. Healing Ceremonies are actually rarely something I can predict, but I can tell when one is occurring. Sometimes I can see the illness or disconnect and can repair it myself (because I am a healer). This is especially the case with bone or muscle structure or nervous system disorders, including the effects of PTSD. I am so grateful to have this ability in my toolbox! And then sometimes the healing is above and beyond the physical body in every way and I don't get to see the specifics. These types of healing ceremonies often all look the same. The person feels like they are under a playful and calming anesthesia, like they have been placed "to the side" while intense things are going on in their body or energy. A lot of times there is no visuals or stories, they just know that "something big happened" and it isn't yet clear what that thing is. It's rarely unpleasant, it's just not as fun as some of the other types of ceremonies lol! We will often see certain energies come in to the room that are known to be healers. One example of these are beings that look like a praying mantis - I feel them as psychic surgeons and they have made appearances in several ceremonies of both my own and others who work with me. A healing Ceremony takes longer than the others to fully grasp/unpack because there is no clear direction or homework that takes place afterwards. Sometimes you can tell it happened because pain that has lasted for decades has finally disappeared or you just feel better overall. It's usually one of those things that people write to me about a year later and say "you wouldn't believe how much my life has changed!" ... I just want to add here that healing can look 100 different ways, including things as crazy as spontaneous exorcisms. Don't be attached to what this can look like, because it will be perfect and exactly what is needed no matter what.
Connection to Core Soul/Source. This is the beautiful bliss experience we all hope to achieve when sitting in Ceremony or prayer. It is a connection to all that is and to our inner Divine. It is incredibly blissful and heart opening, one of my favorites to see for sure. When you have this type of experience, there is a lot of love and understanding. Being blasted with love is the equivalent of connecting to Source because, in the end, everything is love and only love is real. Love is source!
Deep Soul Retrieval. This is a special kind of Ceremony, and one that I only encounter out of every 30 Ceremonies or so. This Ceremony is challenging for me as a Facilitator because I travel to some deep "other" space and retrieve what feels like a trapped soul. I don't know if this is accurate in how I am describing it, but it is as close as I can put into words. I anticipate writing a blog on Soul Retrieval very soon. Sometimes we do a more simple version, where there is partial soul retrieval (parts that you have locked away or designated pieces of your power that you have metaphorically given to other people) but what I am talking about here is much deeper. It usually feels/looks like a person has connected to their own soul for the first time (ever). And there is a spark that ignites. I still don't know much about this type of Ceremony, as I am only shown what I need to see, but it is intense and deep in a "soul activation" sort of way. People walk out feeling like they are experiencing life for the first time.
Ancestral Clearing. In these Ceremonies, people often travel up their ancestral line and experience important moments or emotions that were unprocessed by each person until they get to the core wound of the line. For example: You come from a line of women who do not have good relationships with men. In our Ceremony you relive your mom's deep pain in having to raise a child alone due to being abandoned by her partner. Then you experience her mother (your grandmother) and the abuse she suffered at hands of her husband. Then you go up to your great grandmother, who died young, and find out that she was raped as a child by her father. No one ever believed her and so she repressed that event. This is considered a deep trauma to the soul and one that is carried through the generations until someone steps up to heal it for the family line. This is a more challenging energy to work with because it runs deep, but the results are very profound.
Looping and psychosis. I lump these into one because one often comes with the other. These can happen for two reasons and I will discuss this further in a separate blog. In one scenario, there is a very deep rooted cycle that must play out in a person's life until they are ready to break the cycle and sometimes it's even an ancestral one. If you encounter a loop in Ceremony, it is because you are playing out that cycle in a condensed version and then it will disappear from your life. The second reason this can happen is if a person is very intellectual and compartmentalized. This kind of compartmentalizing isn't obvious, but it is a result of significant trauma that you needed to compartmentalize in order to survive whatever traumatic event you encountered. Despite the horror stories you hear, looping and psychosis isn't a terrifying or permanent position for the person in it if they are working with a trained and capable Ceremony Facilitator. The outcome to these Ceremonies is also very profound.
Physical Release. I also love these types of Ceremonies. Well, I love them all, but I know how good this one feels because I have experienced it myself so many times. Physical release happens when we are finally able to let go of things that are stored in our physical body. Release can be shaking, crying, throwing up, screaming, yawning, etc. This is often combined with other types of Ceremony, though not always. When you are done, you feel a significant weight lifted, space inside yourself has been freed up, and like you have let go of a great burden you are holding.
What I am describing above may or may not make sense to you. It might feel like a lot. Or, if you have recently sat in a Ceremony, it might make you feel like you have no idea what they hell just happened to you (lol). This is why it is so important to work with someone who knows that they are doing and can identify what you're going through, how to support you, and how to help you integrate it.