On this day, as I rise from a deeply healing and humbling plant medicine journey.. into the git of our safe home in these sacred Grandmother Blue Ridge mountains.. my heart holds a space of tremendous love, care and compassion for all those suffering as victims of senseless violence. And for all those who are lost and suffering enough to choose to harm brothers and sisters of our human family.
For my entire adult life, the plants and fungi have been my way back to the heart. When I forget why I’m here and whats truly important, they help me find my way home. So often when people think about the psychedelic experience, they envision a novel journey through alternate dimensions expanding into a vast unknowable universe. Although revelation of the extraordinary certainly occurs, what is often far more profound is a feeling of deep and sincere remembrance. Who were we before the outside world informed us of who we “should” be? Before parents, teachers and institutions taught us right & wrong, good and evil? Before society and culture instilled values of what defines success, who to love and hate and how to “act” to be worthy of “acceptance” from peers, family and community?
The Psychedelic experience is about restoration of our core self. It’s about rediscovering our innate nature behind the stories, wounds, traumas and rules that have constricted our capacity to express our radically creative selves within a boundless pallet of life experience. It helps us to clearly see the choices we made along our life journey to cope with challenges to survive or try to fit into a role our soul never truly wanted. It reveals to us why we chose to don these “masks” in the first place; and the power we hold to let go, reconcile and forgive that which no longer genuinely serves. Yet most of all, it helps us to remember the innocence, wonder and beauty of being a child of the world. In our rush to take care of the endless things that require our time & attention, we so often let so much beauty slip by us without a second thought. The Medicine helps us to slow down and see the world with fresh eyes, a patient heart and a humble appreciation for the simple gift of life. To feel the gratitude in the miracle in one breath. Of being the perfect distance from the sun. Of holding a hand and sharing a simple laugh.
Are transcendent visions of splendor what brings about the greatest healing in ceremony? They certainly can be, and I dare not diminish the profound beauty that such revelations hold. Yet more often than not, it’s a memory of smelling grandma’s fresh cooking, of first falling in love, of playing ball with friends on a Sunday afternoon, of running through a forest climbing trees without a care.. the first time you gazed upon the mountains or the sea, the gentle embrace of your kids after they return home from an exciting day at school.. as well as when you made a costly mistake. When your pride was too strong to say I’m sorry.. and how its never to late to accept humility, forgive and let go. The psychedelic journey is about rediscovering that part of ourselves that is already whole, pure and complete. Remembering we are worthy of healing, joy and peace… Even when we’ve lost our way.
Ehren Cruz is an Anthropologist, CTA & ICF Professional Certified Coach (PCC), Third Wave Psychedelic Certified Coach, Master Ceremonialist, certified Harm Reductionist, Loving Husband & Proud Father of 3 Little Ladies. He is devoted to the healing & actualization in all facets of his life.