The Darkness Within
Another weekend of self exploration and now I am starting to get somewhere! To be honest I am not sure how to proceed with this post because I got to know myself in ways I wasn’t capable of. I went in exploring the light and ended up getting in the darkest place I’ve been to date. I can’t thank Ramon enough for the advice of forgetting about the light and investigating my darkness. The real gains are found by going where the fear is and my last session was nothing less than pure fear, hate and self loathing.
I found myself in the darkest corner of my soul, facing demons I didn’t even know I had.
First night I went in with to find my happy place. I did succeed in a way and it was pleasurable but very quiet. Could be because I was really tired after a hectic week. The music, the setting and the atmosphere was special. We all got sort of thrown into it without knowing what to expect. Some people were having a really bad night with puking their guts out, shitting themselves and feeling really awful. I had what I would consider the most quiet night with Ayahuasca to date. This wasn’t the type of Ayahuasca that I had tried before. They called it Yage (pronounced Jahe) and it had a more subtle, dark and grounded feeling to it. I would say the feeling was more masculine and in the body rather than in the head like the combination of Mimosa and Caapi yields. It was absolutely wonderful, I got to focus on a lot of personal stuff without getting distracted by visions. I also found it was much easier to stay with the experience the day. The taste however was far from pleasant and by the third drink (I had both a booster and a second drink the first night). I shall be honest and admit I didn’t have much of anything but it was great just lying there and enjoying the nothingness. The idea is that not having an experience is an experience in itself and I focused on the why this might be happening and what I could learn from it. I didn’t take care of myself the days before and I was not strict enough with the diet and I am positive this affected the effects of the Yage. After the second drink I half puked because of the horrible taste but nothing came up. Eventually I had to go to the toilette as it does seem to affect the stomach in one way or another. After the bathroom visit it came on pretty strong but all I can remember from this point is waking up the morning after, being one of the last persons to get up after a couple of hours with sleep.
I could feel a difference in myself the day after. Like I had awaken from a deep slumber. I felt more alert and most importantly I felt more open to the world and these amazing people I met yesterday. In a way by having our own experiences the night before we all got to know each other or was able to open our hearts to the people around us. It is easier to open up to people who are also open so by the time we got to the first group therapy we were all ready to talk with complete honesty. This was amazing! Listening to all the stories about the night before I realised I had been pretty deep after all because I hadn’t even noticed what was going on and that some people had been sick as puppies. It was all honest, all calm and I got some amazing feedback. My motives for were to take my life was questioned and it hurt but that honesty ensured that I don’t end up in the same situation again.
After the group therapy we ate some delicious food before turning in for a couple of hours of rest before the next ceremony. Something had changed in the energy in the group and we had more people joining us the second day. We were all really excited and the tension in the room was quite noticeable as we initiated the second ceremony. After going over our intentions for this ceremony I decided to go as dark as I could and explore as much of what I don’t usually appreciate about myself as possible and I was in the perfect mood to do so. When we were asked if we had any questions I just sang: “Lets get this party started!!”. Later that night I could barely stop laughing because it became such an amazing party.
The second night I went to war on my inner darkness. I decided to learn as much about it as I possibly could. I managed to not only accept it but to also forgive myself for those things I cannot change. Investigating my bad habits and bad behaviours I realised I’ve always been trying to avoid them. I’ve tried to change the way I am and remove thoughts and feelings I don’t want. No wonder I’ve been in such a dark place for such a long time. Thinking away your problems isn’t going to make them go away. On the contrary by focusing on the things I don’t like about myself I’ve managed to really make it stick around. What I should have done is focusing on the person I want to be instead. When focusing on the goal and accepting anything that show up on the way you can make anything happen.
Going in with no expectations but a conviction that I needed to go to war on my darkness was the best intention. It left me completely open for any possibility and it didn’t take long after the first drink before I the visions and insights came. I was in a world of dark and coloured glass. Even though the Ayahuasca tried to have me elsewhere I forced my will of darkness upon it. This is the first time where I’ve managed to steer the experience slightly and it made me happy that I can influence it.
Investigating every bad thing about myself accepting it. Forgiving myself for every bad decision I ever made. Investigating my bad habits, my bad behaviours. I realised I’ve always been trying to get rid of unwanted feelings while I should have just accepted them as part of myself. I made aware of that this notion of darkness and light is wrong. There is a whole spectrum of colours in the world and I have been seeing the world in black and white. Next time I’ll be colourfully dressed because that is where the true magic is. I also realised just how this black and white thinking have had me too serious about everything in my life. I’ve been talking a lot about being pragmatic and seeing the grey but that has been a lie. I was all about the black and white; now I know the true meaning of pragmatism.
I got answers about some of my relationships that I have had trouble sorting out. The truth was difficult to handle because it is all my fault and I have been trying to change others when I should have just focused on myself.
The first three or four hours I was battling my addictive behaviour; this feeling of always wanting more.I was shown in very clear pictures what would happen if I had another drink of Ayahuasca this night and the nausea from just thinking about it left me just enjoying the rest of whatever was in store for me.
After deciding on that I had enough I went to have the first pee with no shame. Can’t explain it any better. I’ve battled an inability to pee in public or with people next door but this time it was different, I just went and it was amazing. On the way out from the bathroom I turned into a demon of some sort, I knew very well it was the addiction demon that wanted out and this energy release was amazing.
After this I couldn’t stop laughing, I danced, sang, socialised and felt thankful for everything in my life, everything about my body and my mind. I thanked my mom, my dad, my teeth, ears, feet, hands, nose, eyes, tears, anger, sadness and imperfections. I thanked the girl next to me for allowing me to share her experience as she kicked around and hit me with blankets and pillows. I thanked all the other people for sharing their experience with me by puking, screaming and moving around.
I accepted myself as I am but I am also even loving my dark side and my bad behaviours. They are all me and I know in my heart that it is all good.
I thought about where to live, what to do for a living and how to proceed. There was just emptiness on these questions like it is all up to me and that nothing is stopping me except myself. When coming back up to the surface I noticed some other people had as well and we were all mesmerised by the experience we shared. The music was at this point in a happy place, they put on such a show with making the music three dimensional, singing along and we all really enjoyed it as we came to.
The second night was special but even though it was a nicer experience, the final ceremony was by far the most rewarding I’ve had. First things first however…
The second group therapy was much much lighter and it seems most people had a better time than the night before. We got some serious insights during this session and I was amazed at how much we all share in terms of how our parents managed to mess us up during our childhood. There was very little interference during the ceremonies, we were all left to our own processes. This is something I really believe in and like I said the real magic is in the group session the day after. The ceremony is just a way to be able to open up to the group. It is really powerful to be able to be honest in a group setting. Considering my final ceremony I shall be honest and admit I felt like bragging about my awesome progress (pride). Not sure if it was this or something else that put me in a such a terrible place for the final ceremony.
One of the things I did wrong for the final day was to be excited about the coming ceremony. I got severely punished for this. For the first hour we had complete silence and as it started kicking in the music was put on. The third ceremony was different however. The music started of really rough with didgeridoos and a bass level that send shivers through the core. It was also extremely dark music playing in the beginning. I went straight to my own death, no hesitation I was buried alive and for the first 2 hours I was just lying there enjoying how my body was decaying slowly over time until maggots started crawling in and out of my eye sockets. I don’t think I moved at all until time came for the booster and since I just had such a wonderful initial experience this night I decided to have all the Ayahuasca I could. Immediately when lying down I went back to a place of hate and self loathing.
Now the real process started! I found myself in the darkest corner of my soul, facing demons I didn’t even know I had. It was like I travelled back in time to those dark years during my teenage when I hated the world. I could feel how much I hated everyone in the ceremony room for all kinds of reasons. I hated myself for having these feelings and the inner dialog was a constant battle for not having these unwanted feelings. I was telling myself those thoughts and feelings wasn’t me. That I wanted nothing to do with them but they kept coming back. I was just drifting in this abyss of dark thoughts and feelings unable to move so when the time came for the second full drink I went for it. After the second toma and a quick pee I went back to lie down when someone decided it was a good idea to puke in the hallway between the kitchen and the bathrooms. The sound effects from this made it sound so incredibly funny I couldn’t stop from laughing out really loud and immediately the entire room exploded in hysterical laughter. I have no idea how long the others were laughing because I went back into my process and now it changed quite a bit. I went from hating others to hating myself. At the time I thought it was my addictive behaviour I was fighting but I have since learned that it was my self damaging behaviour I was fighting. I wanted to destroy myself by drinking all the rest of whatever Ayahuasca there was. I wanted to get sick, puke and feel sorry for myself. I thought I just wanted more when I in fact wanted to hurt myself. It put me in a very bad spot and as the others were waking up all I could think of was fleeing from them. I didn’t want to talk about this because I couldn’t face it. It was more than I could bare. I had not been prepared to face these feelings from my teenage years.
I went for a long walk outside and as the others were having breakfast I was screaming at the lake out of despair, hate and self loathing. I knew I wouldn’t be able to talk about this with the others but I also knew from previous experiences that going home to an empty apartment wouldn’t exactly do wonders for my now fragile psyche.
I went inside and told people I had a rough experience and I asked for help getting over it. After some amazing guidance by Marion (one of the guides) I realised my self hatred stems from my childhood and that I have some forgiveness to do. I had no idea how deeply I’ve been scarred but after a good cry I was ready to participate in the group therapy.
It was still very hard and I found myself leaving out a lot from my story. I was so ashamed for all the hate I had been feeling towards these amazing people in the group. I couldn’t bring myself to tell them how much I had hated them last night and I really couldn’t tell them about my wonderful experience of being buried alive. It wasn’t until quite a few people had told about their night that I found the courage to bring up the hate towards the group. It was so amazing letting go of that and being honest about it. It made me finally accept the night before and not feeling bad about it even though it was traumatic to say the least.
Some discoveries about one self is harder than others and this time it took a couple of days to come to conclusions with the journey into my inner darkness. Hopefully I’ll be able to not only accept but even love that about myself at some point. Until then…