Working with sacred plant medicines (PM) such as Ayahuasca can present enormous psycho-spiritual challenges. Many come to heal and process traumatic experiences through the plant medicines, however, very few plant medicine facilitators, support workers, and integration therapists have training in the foundation and neuroscience of trauma approaches, and most do not know how to respond effectively to the various trauma imprints that arise before, during and after the ceremonial space.
Plant medicines have an enormous power to activate the body, psyche, and spirit, releasing that which has been trapped in the unconscious into the light of awareness. However, this often happens in ceremonial space in a way that happens too fast or too intensely, and repercussions could be re-traumatizing and even damaging. It requires a great deal of courage, experience, and bravery to navigate skillfully through the process, and, unfortunately, many are trauma survivors who do not have the inner resilience or the skills to do so. Similarly, Plant Medicine and Ayahuasca facilitators can also feel overwhelmed with a lack of resources and a grounded understanding of what to do when various trauma imprints arise, which could be harmful and neglectful to participants.