James- visited a year ago
I truly entered my journey to Essence with little expectation other than the curiosity of exploring what might be possible in opening up the potential of consciousness and the mind. I left my time there with new friends after 2 days having journeyed through one of the most transformational experiences of my life. A 50 year old, husband for 25 years to the most extraordinary and amazing woman, father, friend and business owner with no previous history of any kind of experience of this nature, I was cautiously expecting to be a little cynical, judgemental and perhaps a even dismissive. In the end I came away have tapped into enormous personal depths of emotion from extraordinary feelings of wonderment, sadness, compassion, true love and an ultimate feeling of connection to everything and everyone around, oh, and I could hear and see like Spiderman 😀. In my opinion, this experience is not just about whether you are searching for answers or need to find the meaning of life, it is truly for everyone and anyone who wants to experience the extraordinary awe and wonderment of yourself, to find new friends and to experience the true love, affection and support of a caring and supportive team of guides and friends.
I believe my wife and I have now found a group of friends and lessons that we will keep with us for the rest of our lives.
On a practical note, the accommodation and setting were amazing, the guides wonderful, thoughtful and informative and the vegan food wonderful.
Thank you Sanne, William, Willem and to all my new friends for making the experience for me.
For me, the Essence Retreat feels like a truly life changing experience that exceeded all my expectations. Such an amazing gateway to clarity and dissolving many (destructive) patterns that limited me in being free. Especially experiencing this ceremony within a group of different people from all over the world felt very connected and gave me a lot of insights that I would not have gotten if I would have been on my own. It also seemed that everyone got exactly what he or she needed to make a real step forward in life. Within the program there was also a lot of time for meditation, breathing exercises, sharing and integration which for me were very valuable additions to the ceremony itself. I feel very grateful to the highly professional facilitators that designed this program and guided me so well through this process. After the retreat, the group stayed connected to share when needed. All in all, the beautiful forest setting, the great food, the very safe environment and highly professional facilitators made this an experience never to forget. Very grateful and highly recommended to anyone who wishes to take a next step.
From initial contact to explore the Essence Institute offering, to the end sessions this was a truly remarkable experience.
The set and setting were at the heart of ensuring that we had a safe, controlled, and supported event. The preparation, psilocybin ceremony, and reintegration were handled expertly, sensitively, and with compassion.
The ceremony itself met all of my expectations. I got everything out of it that I was looking for. Feelings of calm, contentment, bliss, and exhilaration, continue more than a week later. A deep sense of love and warmth.
William, Sanne, and Mara, are expert therapists and facilitators- especially during the ceremony. The vegan food cooked by Mirjam was of the highest order.
My eleven fellow participants gave their full commitment to the three days, a commitment which expanded and enhanced my experience.
I recommend this team to anyone who wishes to review their life, and address issues for which they wish to find solutions.
I had never done such a retreat before (in fact, never even taken psilocybin) and wasn't sure what to expect. To make it short, my expectations were more than met, and I'd recommend the Essence Institute to anyone who is interested in a powerful healing ceremony involving psilocybin mushrooms.
The application process was very smooth and professional. Any questions were promptly answered competently. When we met in person the facilitators were very friendly, open and welcoming. We did some team stuff to get to know each other on the first day. This really helped to break the ice and there was a friendly and including atmosphere even on the first evening, where participants could share their emotions and intentions about the experience. For some this was a very emotional event. It is not easy to expose one's fears, traumas or vulnerabilities to a group of strangers but the facilitators really managed to invoke an atmosphere where this was possible without any embarrassment.
The next day we started with some yoga, breakfast and intention setting. Everybody again tried to express their hopes and wishes for the healing ceremony. After a light lunch and a short break where we prepared the medicine for ingestion we drank the truffles tea, laid down on our mattresses and listened to some ambient music while our facilitators quietly watches over us.
And then the magic happened.
I can of course only describe my personal experience. I slowly dissolved in an ocean of healing consciousness energy that permeated my body and mind with waves of absolute bliss. It was pure enjoyment to bathe in this powerful, intelligent energy. I could imagine that people might call this experience mystic, "cosmic" or "divine", but to me it felt very organic. It was like getting in touch with the originating life-force of nature, a kind of energy that generates everything in our bodies and our consciousnesses. It was very relaxing to sink back into the mighty waves of this consciousness ocean, and I found it inconceivable that there was a stigma of "drug-taking" attached to what was in essence a powerful healing ceremony.
When I opened my eyes from time to time I could see our facilitators sitting there, watching and smiling, and I could really feel the love between them extending to us participants, and I felt very grateful to them for enabling us to have such a beautiful experience.
Others had it a bit more difficult; one guy had to vomit and some had trouble letting go, but our facilitators really knew how to handle this professionally and quickly resolved any issues. Some guys couldn't stop laughing but the facilitators calmed them down when it got excessive. Figuratively speaking, they watched over us like a team of guardian angels, and they did this beautifully. I really felt like we were in good hands.
After a few hours the effects had subsided and I felt a bit shaky but still peaceful and mellow. The feeling of well-being lasted well into the next day where we shared our experiences and finally said goodbye. It was surprising how a group of strangers could build such a positive connection within only two days. The team provided us with instructions on how to work on the integration of the experience, and we're still in contact via WhatsApp.
For me it was an absolutely fantastic experience and I'd like to eventually repeat it. I can only recommend the team of Essence Institute for their loving kindness and their work of bringing this wonderful medicine to our present-day culture. And yes, one more thing - the cook was fantastic, too ;-)
Essence really provided the perfect guidance, setting and support for one of the most profound and helpful experiences in my life. Their knowledge, experience and big hearts made me feel safe and taken care of through the whole journey. I happily recommend this place to everyone and I can´t wait to get back to learn more about myself.
I highly recommend Essence Institute to anyone wishing to explore the potential of these wonderful plant medicines in a safe, welcoming, cosy and professional environment. The attention to detail was superb, from the yoga to the breathwork to the fabulous vegetarian food to the way the psilocybin experience itself was conducted. William and his team do a tremendous job and everyone there thoroughly enjoyed themselves and learnt a great deal.