Anaconda Woman Maestra Amelia is 67 years old and comes from the Amazonian community of Gusta Legre de Pachitea on the Ucayali River.
She began working with plant medicines as a young woman under the tutelage of her Uncle. Amelia has been through many tragedies, as there have been many deaths in her family, and much destruction and contamination of communities she has lived in.
These experiences have only fortified her heart of gold, and her desire to be a conduit of healing. In the 35 years she has been working with the plants, Amelia has become an expert herbalist with an encyclopedia-like knowledge of the medicinal properties of plants found in Shipibo territories.
Amelia also served as a traditional midwife for her community for over 20 years. She brings this wisdom of birth and life and women’s medicine into her work as a Maestra in the ceremonies as well. She has a gentle and loving character, is full of laughter and is driven by a deep passion for her work.
In a rapidly changing and expanding modern world, it is a true blessing that women such as her still exist today. We feel very blessed and grateful to be able to do this type of work with grandmother wisdom carriers who continue to share the knowledge of Spirit and the Earths kindness with us in ceremony.
Maestra Manuela comes from a long-standing and well-respected family lineage of Shipibo healers in the Ucayali region of the Peruvian Amazon.
She is 70 years old with nearly 50 years of experience working with the medicine. She began drinking Ayahuasca with her father at age 13.
Even today she heals and teaches, both Shipibo and foreigners, and she continues to undertake diets to learn more and gain more healing power.
The totem of the Mahua lineage is the flying tree, Palo Volador, known as Noyarao: The Tree of Light. Many years of dieta with this tree has helped Manuela become a powerful and potent healer.
She is a beautiful energy to be around and has an amazing laugh that will keep you smiling forever! It is a true gift that women like her still exist in this rapidly changing modern world and we feel truly honoured to have the opportunity to work with her.
She has a vast knowledge and understanding of the natural pharmacy.
Manuela is an incredibly generous and positive force, and in each ceremony she always makes sure to work on each participant individually in ceremony through singing her incredible variety of healing songs (called ikaros).
We will begin the retreat with a traditional Andean Despacho. A beautiful ceremonial offering to Pachamama and the the Apus (mountains). This is to give offering to lands we will be working on, as well as a time to ask for support from the land and its medicines to help us on our journey inwards.
The Despacho is in the spirit of Ayni and reciprocity and it is a powerful ceremony that is rooted in the wisdom of walking in balance on this beautiful planet.
This Andean ceremony will be with Grandma Maria Apaza, a female Alto-Mesayoq from Q’eros. She is an Andean wisdom keeper and a wise respected elder carrying the ancient traditions of the lands.
Gilberto comes from a lineage of Curanderos, The Mahua. When Gilberto was 12, his grandfather, the main healer for his village, began to train him in the ways of Shipibo Medicine Healing.
He did his first dieta then, and lived in isolation for over a year dieting the plant mapacho, an Amazonian tobacco used in ceremonies to clean and take out illness.
Now in his 60s, Gilberto offers over 50 years of experience. His vast knowledge of plant medicine and healing is truly amazing. He resides in the Ucayali region and is now the main healer of his village Paoyan. He rarely leaves as he is the village doctor. It is a true gift to sit with Gilberto in ceremony. To participate in a traditional dieta with him is a blessing.
Juan Gabriel Apaza Lonasco is a respected wisdom-keeper of the Q’ero Nation of Peru. Known as the last living descendants of the Inka bloodline, and the keepers of the coca wisdom, the Q’ero still follow the ancient traditions of their ancestors by paying hommage to the Mother Earth (Pachamama) and the Apus (mountain guardians) through traditional “saminchay” fire ceremonies.
Juan Gabriel dedicates his life to sharing ancestral wisdom and traditional ceremony to heal at all levels. This passion has guided him to travel internationally for more than 20 years, engaging with indigenous leaders around the world. His dream is to build the Tawantinsuyo Eco-Temple in Peru to encourage indigenous coalitions at a global level.