Frequently asked questions

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What is included in the stay?
  • Personal consultations with the Maestras and Maestros
  • Group talks about the healing experiences and post ceremony integration
  • Experienced team of facilitators to guide guests throughout the workshop with processing and integrating the healing experiences
  • Energetic Body treatments
  • All food and drink – a deliciously simple diet suitable for working with medicinal plants and Ayahuasca
  • Explore the jungle and see medicinal plants in their natural environment
  • Accommodation in comfortable Rooms
  • Laundry service
  • Boat-Transfer to Pandorita and back
  • Security 24/7
What is the Proper Diet? What Foods should I avoid?

In order for you to have a successful experience at Pandorita, you’ll need a healthy body. We’ve strategically designed a meal plan in perfect balance between local ingredients, delicious flavours, and the needs of ayahuasca. It’s necessary that while you are at Pandorita, you will refrain from eating additional refined sugars, fruit, pork, alcoholic beverages, and western street drugs. Sexual conduct is not permitted during the workshop due to traditional customs and respect to those traditions.

What should I expect from the purge?

It’s natural to be a bit hesitant about something that looks that uncomfortable. We like to define the purge as an all-energetic release that takes place during and after ceremony. This can be physical, emotional, purely energetic and psychic. You can and may vomit, or defecate, but it is not necessary for the cleansing to take place. The purpose of the purge is to cleanse, and it is part of the ceremony. The more relaxed you are the easier it is to let go and the ayahuasca will remove everything it needs for you to achieve cleansing and spiritual ascension.

Is it as hard as it seems?

It can be very difficult, but it does not have to be. You’ll have assistance in the form of our trained shamans and staff who will work with you to teach you how to release in the most effortless ways possible. When you vomit or must use the bathroom, there are lots of staff members to help you. If you get cold, our helpers will bring you a warm blanket. We support you each step of the process.

Will I go crazy?

It is common to experience mental turbulence at times in ceremony, but no, you will NOT go crazy. We help you by guiding you through the psychological cleansing of the mind. Let go into your heart and the mind will release the afflictions that imprison it. Our support is key and together your mind can be freed from pain, trauma, and suffering. It will allow you to ascend and learn incredible.

How do I deal with the anxiety and/or fear?

Anxiety and fear can be common in ayahuasca. The experience, at first is foreign and designed to push you. Our shamanic staff will teach you breathing techniques, how to use love and the heart and will support you through each step of the cleansing and learning process. The anxiety and fear can and will be overcome, and when you release it, you will be freed from it, not only in ayahuasca but also in the rest of your life.

Can I be helped?

It’s normal to think that your condition is so extreme that it is beyond fixing, but having said that, yes you can be helped. You will have lots of help and support to ensure that you receive the maximum opportunity for cleansing and transformation. You will experience growth and development as well have the opportunity to release afflictions of many kinds.

How do I integrate what I’ve learned when I go back home?

Your main benefits typically come in the form of the positive changes that result after your experiences. All Guests are given the tools needed to integrate things they’ve learned back home. We have also created a Medicine wheel that guides individuals interested in integration on the path of shamanic growth and transcendence.

What are the potential interactions with Zoloft and Methadone?

It can be a very dangerous conflict for your body to mix these substances with ayahuasca. That’s why at Ani Shinan, we require that all our guests be free from antidepressants and all other psychoactive western medicines before coming on our workshops. You are recommended to consult with your physician to follow the protocols for weaning off medications with sufficient time before coming. Conflict with certain medications can be FATAL. Your safety is our #1 priority. If you have any questions concerning the use of western medicines and ayahuasca, please contact us first with your specific situation.

Can it make my problems worse? ADHD, depression, other dangers, etc.

Ayahuasca in the wrong hands can definitely exacerbate your symptoms. Ayahuasca is a powerful shamanic tool and medicine and should never be taken lightly. You have to participate with trained professional shamans that have the training and experience necessary to make sure you progress through the ceremonies in the right direction to reduce these types of symptoms in your life. At Pandorita, our shamanic team is headed by shamans with literally decades of experience in guiding individuals with these types of issues through ceremony. An overwhelming number of our participants have experienced nothing short of miraculous transformation.

Are there scientific studies on ayahuasca?

There are many scientific studies that talk about ayahuasca being a medicine with curative properties. Please see our information and links to studies on ayahuasca related healing and transformation.

Are psychotic episode experiences possible?

In the wrong circumstances, ayahuasca can exacerbate your psychotic issues. Ayahuasca is a very potent psychoactive substance. This cannot be taken lightly. Only proper candidates should participate in ceremony. It is necessary that you participate with trained professionals that have the specific training to guide you away from psychotic episodes during an ayahuasca ceremony. The traditional apprenticeship of an ayahuasquero is normally 5 to 10 years. Our shamans have decades of experience in the shamanic arts. We have safety protocols to make sure you are safe through the entirety of your journey with us. There are many self-proclaimed shamans with little to no training. This is dangerous. With a true professional shaman there are safeguards against these types of episodes.

Ayahuasca is not legal in a lot of countries, but it is legal in Costa Rica. It is illegal in all developed nations with the exception of a few Christian organizations that use it as a sacrament. We do not advocate ayahuasca use in any country where it is illegal.

Are there positive healing experiences?

For the last decade, thousands of people have found positive and healing experience from proper ayahuasca ceremonies. This has included the miraculous transcendence of depression, anxiety, cancer, blindness, lyme disease, PTSD, Gulf War syndrome, gastrointestinal disorders, pain and many kinds of psychosomatic illnesses. We express our deepest gratitude to all those that had the courage and willingness to ask spirit for transcendence and the receptivity to move beyond their afflictions.

Can it help fix my depression and are there similar experiences of this?

It is possible to fix your depression. There are numerous stories of long-term antidepressant users who left the pills behind. Kira Salak wrote a compelling article in National Geographic chronicling her transcendence of depression stating that the depression lifted off her like the shedding of a heavy wet sweater that had been weighing down her life: Ayahuasca – National Geographic Adventure Magazine.

What is ayahuasca?

Ayahuasca is a concentrated visionary tea that is made from a variety of ingredients, the most important being the Ayahuasca vine. The plants create a powerful visionary medicine used in the Amazon by traditional medicine men. It is administered in ceremonies, which produce visions and cleansing purges.

How is the ayahuasca made?

Ayahuasca is made by combining the Ayahuasca vine and the leaves of the Ch*cruna tree. The vine is pounded into long thin strips and placed into the bottom of the pot and the Ch*cruna leaves are packed on top. The combination of plants is then boiled for several days by one of our trained shamans. Water is added throughout the day continuing the cooking and to prevent burning. It is finally refined until it is a thick brown liquid. It is this tea that is called “Ayahuasca” and is ingested in ceremony.

What is Amazonian shamanism?

Amazonian shamanism originated in the tribes of the Amazon basin. Through their extensive understanding of their environment, they utilized the many medicinal plants, forming a medical culture unique to its own. The Indians learned to heal from the spirits of the plants that they utilized. They connected through the sacred use of visionary plants where telepathy, shared consciousness, and astral travel were common experiences.

What is shamanism?

Shamanism is a type of traditional spiritual belief systems and traditional medicine. Found throughout tribal cultures around the world, similarities abound between beliefs of what seem to be unrelated communities. One commonality is the belief in “other realities” or “other dimensions” that the consciousness travels through during training and then healing work.

What about vaccinations?

Consult your physician about needed travel vaccinations before departure.

Are there mosquitos?

Yes! While the camp house is screened to provide an area free from mosquitoes, the jungle is home to many biting insects. The best protection is to cover your skin with clothes sprayed with repellant.

What do I need to bring with me?

Lightweight pants, light weight long sleeved shirts, shorts, t-shirts, bathing suit, sunscreen, hat, camera, film, binoculars (optional), mosquito repellent, rain poncho or jacket, socks, sandals, and athletic shoes. Head lamps work wonderfully in low light conditions at night. You might also want to bring pants/shorts with elastic waists (no buttons or zippers) for use during ceremony.

How long are the ceremonies?

Ceremonies generally last between 3 and 6 hours

What language is spoken?

Spanish is spoken throughout Costa Rica. The Shipibos speak their own Shipibo language which is Spanish with the addition of some indigenous words. We utilize bilingual guides (English, German and Spanish) and local guides (Spanish only).

Do I really see animals?

Guests report seeing many animals. Besides countless species of birds, butterflies, insects, and snakes, many land mammals such as monkeys, and even ocelots have been spotted. Seeing animals in the jungle depends on many factors such as noise, weather conditions and the season. Noise, the number one reason for not seeing animals, scares them away. The quieter you remain in the jungle the better for witnessing animals.

How is the climate?

The jungle is hot and humid with cool evenings and nights. It rains every month with a dryer and wetter season. The wet season is from May through November.