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Ayahuasca & San Pedro Blog

Psychological integration and long-term effects of Ayahuasca sessions


By Erik Hendrick

September 3, 2018.


Psychological integration and long-term effects of Ayahuasca sessionsI would like to share, through this brief note, some observations relative to the importance of psychological integration of ayahuasca sessions experiences and positive long-term effects.


Perhaps one of the long-term effects which should be subjected to a thorough research, is what commonly is known as a "life changing" experience, that is, a transformative experience. But, what is it that makes an experience resulting transformative? Is a transformative experience the result of a certain type of shamanic ritual, or is the transformative experience, maybe, the result of an adequate interpretation, assimilation and integration of the experience? Apparently, the answer to this question does not lie in whether the experience happened in a ceremony with a healer of a native community of the Amazon, or if the experience happened in another type of context, as in the case of syncretic religions in Brazil, or in a session of Psychedelic Therapy or Psychospiritual Therapy, but on the quality of interpretation and integration of the experience. The testimonials indicate that, in the different context in which the experience is lived, there have been cases of people experiencing positive long-term effects. Similarly, it has been observed that, regardless of the context, many people only experience temporary positive effects. Therefore, it is deduced that experiences that are not properly integrated, usually generate only temporary effects, and experiences that are elaborated in depth, that are integrated into the field of consciousness, and that are followed by a psychospiritual practice, these usually have long-term effects. This is a hypothesis that I hope can be confirmed through a committed research work.


What the therapeutic practice with Ayahuasca allows us to deduce is that, having a transformative experience, it seems to require a certain sensitivity and the ability to perform an adequate process of interpretation, understanding and integration of perceptions and contents or messages coming from the inner psychic world. When this process is carried out, it is then possible to experience an expansion of consciousness that usually brings with it mental lucidity, emotional balance and spiritual peace. That is, if a person who participates in an ayahuasca ceremony manages to transform their internal visions and their physical and mental perceptions into mental or cognitive understandings, and mainly, if this person is able to put these understandings into practice, it is most likely that the person will achieve changes in his or her behavior, his or her beliefs and his or her lifestyle, which will bring a life experience of greater psychological and spiritual health.

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