La Medicina
& TradiCiÓn

Below you can find two approaches for understanding Amazonian medicine - shamanic and scientific
Ayahuasca ceremony explanations
Shamanic understanding of Ayahuasca
Shamanism or Curanderism (from the word "curar" - to heal, take care) originates in the tradition of the Indians living in the Amazon jungle for thousands of years.
During this time, the accumulated practical experience of using medicinal plants reached to the present day in practically unchanged, pure and original form.
Curandero is a person who had appropriate training in
the way of being alone in the jungle during Dieting with Plant-Teachers. He is able to normalize energy, mental and physical condition of the person by using the force of medicinal plants, helping people to find peace and tranquility, gain health and feel of love.
For this purpose Shaman uses some different practices such as passage diets with medicinal and shamanic plants and ceremonies with Plant-teachers.
Mainly these are ceremonies ceremonies with sacred Ayahuasca tea.
These ceremonies can be held only by experienced Curandero - the protector, guide and healer. Ayahuasca rituals influence complexly on the state of human body and mind.
First of all, Ayahuasca relives you from mental and energetic blocks which often cause diseases, depression, and general fatigue. Additionally, Ayahuasca helps to rethink the attitudes and beliefs that prevent person from moving forward. It allows to analyse the state of life in the past and its influence on the present. Moreover, it teaches what can be done to achieve life-goals in the future.
Ayahuasca affects the deep layers of the subconscious, such as fear, love and experiences which people usually keep to themselves and can't get to them using only traditional practices.
On the physical level, Ayahuasca is a powerful cleaning agent. Its use helps to cleanse the body of toxins and parasites.
Shamans call Ayahuasca "Mother of Medicine" and believe that it leads those, who refer to her as their children, helping them to cope with the most difficult moments of life.
Scientific understanding of Ayahuasca.
What to expect from this experience?
As is the case with all hallucinogens, the ayahuasca experience is profoundly affected by the extrapharmacological factors of set and setting. Intention, preparation, and structure of the session are all integral to the content and outcome of any encounter with hallucinogens, a clear distinction from virtually all other psychotropic agents. The diligent attention to these factors are known to be integral to the shamanic model of altered states of consciousness, minimizing risks and enhancing the likelihood of salutary results. The failure to adequately comprehend and adhere to the wisdom behind these time-tested safeguards, on the other hand, often leads to the unfortunate consequences frequently observed within the context of contemporary recreational drug use and abuse.

Altered states of consciousness, including those induced by hallucinogens, possess a variety of common elements. Before examining those features more closely identified with the ayahuasca experience, these shared properties merit review.

10 Common Elements of Altered States of Consciousness

The ten general characteristics understood to be virtually universal to such an altered state experience include:

1. Alterations in Thinking. To varying degrees, subjective changes in concentration, attention, memory, and judgment may be induced in the acute state, along with a possible diminution or expansion of reflective awareness.

2. Altered Time Sense. The sense of time and chronology may become altered, inducing a subjective feeling of timelessness, or the experience of time either accelerating or decelerating. Time may be experienced as infinite, or infinitesimal in duration.

3. Fear of Loss of Control. An individual may experience a fear of losing his hold on reality or his sense of self-control. In reaction, increased resistance to the experience may occur, causing an amplification of underlying anxiety. If there is a positive cultural conditioning and understanding of the experience, mystical and positive transcendent states may ensue.

4. Changes in Emotional Expression. Along with reduction in volitional or conscious control, intense emotional reactivity may occur, ranging from ecstasy to despair.

5. Changes in Body Image. Alterations in body image are frequently reported, often associated with dissolution of boundaries between self and others and states of depersonalization and derealization where the usual sense of one's own reality is temporarily lost or changed. Such experiences may be regarded as strange and frightening, or as mystical, oceanic states of cosmic unity, particularly when sustained within the context of belief systems conditioned for spiritual emergent encounters.

6. Perceptual Alterations. Increased visual imagery, hyperacuteness of perceptions and overt hallucinations may occur. The content of these perceptual alterations are influenced by cultural expectations, group influences, and individual wish-fulfillment fantasies. They may reflect the psychodynamic expression of underlying fears or conflicts, or simple neurophysiologic mechanisms inducing geometric patterns and alterations of light, colors, and shapes. Synesthesias, the transformation of one form of sensory experience into another, such as seeing auditory stimuli, may be experienced.

7. Changes in Meaning or Significance. While in a powerful altered state of consciousness, some individuals manifest a propensity to attach special meaning or significance to their subjective experiences, ideas, or perceptions. An experience of great insight or profound sense of meaning may occur, their significance ranging from genuine wisdom to self-imposed delusion.

8. Sense of the Ineffable. Because of the uniqueness of the subjective experience associated with these states and their divergence from ordinary states of consciousness, individuals often have great difficulty communicating the essence of their experience to those who have never had such an encounter.

9. Feelings of Rejuvenation. Many individuals emerging from a profoundly altered state of consciousness report a new sense of hope, rejuvenation, and rebirth. Such transformed states may be short-term or, conversely, may lead to sustained positive adjustments in mood and outlook.

10. Hypersuggestibility. While in the throes of altered state experience, individuals experience an enhanced susceptibility to accept or respond uncritically to specific statements. Nonspecific cues, reflecting cultural belief systems or group expectation, may similarly assume directives of weighty importance. The position of shaman, or session facilitator, particularly within the context of hallucinogen use, consequently becomes a role with great vested responsibility, as individual participants are highly susceptible to verbal and nonverbal input directed toward them. The content and outcome of such altered states experiences are often directly attributable to the integrity and skill of the leader.

The 3 Stages of the Ayahuasca Experience

Reports of specific ayahuasca effects vary greatly depending upon the cultural context, which may range from traditional native Amazonian ritual, to mestizo healing ceremony, to syncretic religious structure, to inquisitive Euro-American psychonautic exploration. The Tukano tribe of the Columbian Amazonia separate the ayahuasca experience into three stages. The first stage, which may begin within minutes of ingestion, induces the characteristic gastrointestinal reaction of nausea, emesis, and diarrhea, along with sweating, a sense of "flying," and the visual perception of vivid, kaleidoscopic array of brightly colored lights and geometric patterns. During the second phase of ayahuasca intoxication for the Tukano, the perception of brightly colored geometric patterns start to fade, while the sensation of flight into deep internal space intensifies along with an envisioning of three-dimensional forms of mythological and "monstrous" animals. The third and final stage involves the deepening of hallucinations, along with a progression into calmer and more peaceful visions and thought associations.

* More information you can find in the book "The Ayahuasca Experience: A Sourcebook on the Sacred Vine of Spirits" by Ralph Metzner
Kambo ceremony explanations
Shamanic understanding of Kambo.
The Frog medicine.
Kambo is known as one of the most powerful Amazonian practice for enchasing the immune system and "reloading" your body moreover its one of the most powerful, natural antibiotics and anesthetics found in the world.
Kambo is the name given to the waxy, poisonous secretion of a tree frog that is used by the indigenous tribes to heal and strengthen the body, mind and spirit. The scientific name for this frog is Phyllomedusa bicolor or "Two-Colored Leaf Guardian." It is also known as the "Giant Green Monkey Tree Frog." This frog lives in the northwestern part of the Amazon Rainforest where the natives use it to gain strength, build immunity, cure illnesses, aid in "hunting magic" and also to get rid of "panema" (bad luck). It is a deep cleansing therapy – – physically, emotionally and mentally. It detoxifies the liver and intestines, improves mental functioning, and has the potential to dissolve emotional blocks. It also helps to reset our cellular memory.

The tribes also use it to ward off the enemy, to rid one of laziness, lack of desire, sadness, mental, spiritual and physical weakness, low self-esteem and disharmony with nature. In the Amazon Rainforest, this medicine is known to bring happiness to those who take it, to bring luck, and to unblock and circulate the heart chakra among many other benefits.
Scientific understanding of Kambo.

What is Kambo?

Kambo is harvested from the poisonous secretions of the Amazon tree frog, Phyllomedusa bicolor. The Kambo ceremony involves making several small burns at specific locations on the body and applying the poison to the burns. Kambo initially causes a generally unpleasant period of increased heart rate, nausea, vomiting, and incontinence that lasts 30 to 40 minutes. This is followed by a period of listlessness and eventually some long-lasting effects.

The use of Kambo in the traditional ceremony has not been studied in any randomized controlled trials. However, many studies have investigated the health benefits of numerous active peptides found in the frog venom.


Kambo contains many peptides that are active in the body, including phyllocaerulein, phyllomedusin, phyllokinin, sauvagine, dermaseptins, adenoregulin, deltorphin, and dermorphin

Mechanism of Action

The peptides from Kambo have incredibly diverse effects in the body. They are absorbed directly into the bloodstream through burns in the skin. The following peptides have been discovered in Kambo:

  • Phyllocaerulein (150 to 600 ug/g fresh tissue) stimulates gut flow, stomach acid secretion, and lowers blood pressure
  • Phyllomedusin (tachykinin, NK1 activator) and phyllokinin (bradykinin) contract the gut and lower blood pressure (by dilating blood vessels). Phyllomedusin also acts on the brain to alter consciousness and behavior
  • Sauvagine stimulates the adrenals and dopamine release. It causes the smooth muscles to contract and acts as a depressant in the brain (i.e., "downer")
  • Dermaseptin B2 fights microbes and may combat cancer
  • Adenoregulin affects the activity of important neurotransmitters and compounds (adenosine, adrenaline, and serotonin (5-HT1A)). It's responsible for the initial listlessness and eventually an intense "flight or fight" response
  • Deltorphins (delta-opioid receptor activator) and dermorphin (mu-opioid receptor activator) act as opioids to relieve pain and induce euphoria

Health Benefits of Kambo

1) The Kambo Cleanse

Kambo is known for its intense and immediate purgatory effects that generally result in vomiting and diarrhea that can last up to 4 hours, which may remove toxins from the body. The ritual, performed by both tribes and urban people, has been documented and described in detail. Several peptides in Kambo are probably responsible for the effect

The phylloceruelean peptide in Kambo increased acid production in the stomach, contracted the small intestine, and increased pancreas activity

Stomach acid production was also increased by phylloceruleean

Additionally, the peptide phyllomedusin led to stomach spasms

2) Kambo May Help Relieve Stress and Anxiety

Kambo users frequently report improved mood. The Kambo peptide, dermorphin, decreased blood levels of the "stress hormone" cortisol in 28 healthy human subjects

A synthetic dermorphin reduced pain and anxiety in rats under stress after several days of repeated use

Deltorphins experienced an increase in overall movement and social interactions, which points to a decrease in anxiety

3) Kambo Relieves Pain

Deltorphin and dermorphin, found in the skin of the Amazon frog (Phyllomedusa bicolorand other related species), are opioid peptides with promising pain-relieving effectsand minimal toxicity

Deltorphin peptides relieved pain by acting opioid-like (via delta-opioid receptors)

Deltorphin also relieved pain with chronic inflammation

Studies in cow brain blood vessels show deltorphin is able to cross the blood-brain barrier. This is important in order for the peptides to have an effect on the brain and reduce pain

Many research efforts are directed toward discovering peptides similar to deltorphin for the treatment of pain

Since dermorphin also relieves pain (but via mu-opioid receptors), researchers are aiming to optimize dermorphin as a safe alternative to morphine

4) Kambo Has Anticancer Properties

Dermaseptin B2, one of many peptides found in Kambo, blocked the growth of prostate cancer by promoting cell death

Dermaseptin B2 also stopped the growth of many human cancers in cell studies, including mouth cancer, prostate cancer, and brain tumors

Additionally, in cellular studies, Dermaseptin B2 blocked processes that led to new blood vessel growth, which is useful in treating cancer because it blocks the flow of nutrients to growing tumors

When nanoparticles were used to deliver dermaseptin to cancer cells, it had a stronger anticancer effect

5) Kambo May Help Treat Addiction

Tachykinins are small proteins that affect reward, motivation, and stress responses in the brain, which are disrupted in addiction. Molecules that can reach the brain and increase tachykinin activity (by binding to receptors) have the potential for treating addiction

Phyllomedusin is one tachykinin found in Kambo that is likely responsible for the effects of Kambo in treating addiction

6) Kambo Lowers Blood Pressure

Kambo users commonly report a drop in blood pressure as one of their symptoms during the initial unpleasant phase of Kambo cleansing. Two peptides found in Kambo (phylloceruelean and a physalaemin-like peptide) lowered blood pressure

7) Kambo May Protect the Heart

Deltorphin II, one of the peptides from Kambo, had increased blood flow to the heart, which prevented irregular heartbeat. This peptide is being researched as a new treatment for heart attacks

8) Kambo Is Antimicrobial

Many of the peptides found in the secretions of the tree frog can fight microbes, which protect the frog from infections. They have a wide spectrum of microbe-fighting activity

Adenoregulin fights both fungus and bacteria and is especially effective against E. coli and yeast.

Dermaseptins are another class of peptides found in Kambo that kill both gram positive and gram negative bacteria as well as yeast.

Dermaspetin is also antiviral. It killed the herpes virus in cell studies but must be applied before the virus binds to host cells.

Biofilm infections are notoriously resistant and difficult to treat, often requiring high doses of antibiotics over a long duration. Dermaseptins stopped biofilm growth and were less toxic to cells than antibiotics.

Another peptide from Kambo, Phyllospetin-1, can also fight infections. It is especially potent against a bacteria that commonly cause skin infections (Staphylococcus aureus) and its associated biofilm.

* By Chelsea Paresi, PhD (biomedical science)
June 14, 2018

What is Ayahuasca and how to make it?
What is Kambo, the frog medicine?
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