Cowboys making a cash grab
Reviewed by Adeptus Psychonautica 5 months ago
I attended one of their retreats in Switzerland in March 2016. To say I was not impressed would be an understatement. The staff, while well meaning, had very little knowledge or training in what they were dealing with. There was some half-baked pseudo-scientific bullshit, some dubious attempts at psychoanalysis, and plenty of attempted up-selling to make some extra cash. The venue was completely overcrowded with around 40 participants (not including staff) in a room which probably could have handled 25 comfortably. It was literally shoulder to shoulder. The ayahuasca was weak, I have heard since that they had to dilute it to make sure there was enough to go around. Food and accommodation was OK. Here is a link to a video review I made about my time with this organisation - https://youtu.be/c-SIS8oTSS0
Participants in ceremony: 40
Facilitators in ceremony: 3
Participants per Facilitator: 13.333333333333334
The location was in Switzerland where everything is beautiful, but you can't really give them any credit for that
Follow up integration
Visited Friday, March 4th 2016
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Disturbing reports associated with Ayahuasca International
Ayahuasca International (originally Ayahuasca Internacional) is also known as Inner Mastery International S.L.U.
Important: Always look for motivations and many recommendations prior to choosing who to drink with!
For reports and resources concerning activities from disrespectful to unethical to downright horrible, see the following links:
- Official ICEERS statement: Cofán speaking out against Varela’s activities and they say he has had absolutely NO training through them, nor any of his facilitators with Ayahuasca International; that he forged documents and has lied about many associations, such as having any sort of blessing from this indigenous group of true Colombian shamans or their peoples.
- Sexual abuse testimony, and reported unorthodox practices with his small daughter around often; Cofán speaking out about his illegitmacy, as he claims to have been blessed and trained by these people; Varela’s own psychologist, who sounded a bit unorthodox himself, reportedly pushing for sexual exploration as well, is said to no longer be by Varela’s side due to Varela’s lack of ethics.
- Very interesting article detailing many astounding and unsafe practices of Varela, such as oﬀering the tea to everyone without any sort of screening or preparation, has highly advertised an illegal practice for monetary gain, including discounts for children; it is questioned where he sources his brew and whether it is in fact ayahuasca; certainly Varela’s commercial efforts are terrible for sustainability of these sacred medicines.