Summary of first Ayahuasca Dialogues roundtable in Iquitos, Peru (Español and English)

Summary of first Ayahuasca Dialogues roundtable in Iquitos, Peru (Español and English)

Note: This preliminary summary will be updated and expanded after receipt of final feedback from participants. This roundtable is not representative of the issues the ESC is exploring elsewhere, but represents the ESC’s commitment to responding to local conditions and interests. With community support, the ESC will host dialogues elsewhere with more stakeholders. Donate now to help support the ESC’s work to develop consensus on the sustainability and safe use of ayahuasca. Visit the ESC’s Ayahuasca Dialogues crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo.    Resumen Mesa Redonda: Modelos sostenibles y justos para el cultivo de la ayahuasca (Banisteriopsis caapi) y chacruna (Psichotria viridis) con beneficios económicos, sociales, culturales y ambientales   12 de Agosto, 2014 Iquitos, Región Loreto, Perú   Organizado por: Consejo para la Sostenibilidad Etnobotánica (Ethnobotanical Stewardship Council, ESC) Acogido y respaldado por: Dirección Regional de Comercio Exterior, Turismo y Artesanía. (Dircetura) Participantes: La mesa redonda dio la bienvenida a más de 25 participantes en representación de las partes interesadas como curanderos (healers), centros (albergues) Propietarios, empresas, universidades, investigadores, agricultores y productores.   Moderadores: Solange Pineda, Comunicadora Social , Dircetura; Joshua Wickerham, Director Ejecutivo, ESC   Coordinadora: Sra. Mariella Noriega, Consejo para la Sostenibilidad Etnobotánica (ESC) Resumen Ejecutivo: La Dircetura y ESC organizaron esta mesa redonda sobre todo para hacer frente a la escasez de chacruna (Psychotria viridis) en Iquitos y explorar modelos, o sistemas e implementación de un plan de manejo cultural para aumentar la producción de ésta y otras plantas utilizadas en la mezcla de la ayahuasca en Loreto, mientras que al mismo tiempo que ayuda a asegurar los beneficios sociales, ambientales y económicos a las comunidades...
ESC and local community agree to pilot test ayahuasca safety and sustainability guidelines in Peru

ESC and local community agree to pilot test ayahuasca safety and sustainability guidelines in Peru

Following meetings with village leaders at the Santa Rosa cooperative in San Martin, Peru, the Ethnobotanical Stewardship Council (ESC) has agreed to support the local community in implementing protocols for sustainable ayahuasca cultivation, ceremonial safety, and cultural sensitivity. After years of neglect of traditional ayahuasca culture in the region, this community has made a conscious decision to work to protect and enhance its relationship to ayahuasca and has asked for the ESC’s support to achieve safety and sustainability objectives. To date, the community has constructed a new ceremony building (maloca) and is working with local vegetalistas (healers) to administer ayahuasca ceremonies with the community and with visitors. This eco-tourism model is very connected with the community, as visitors stay in community members’ homes and get to experience village life on the river in an agricultural cooperative. The community has expressed three important needs: Cultural sensitivity: The community has experienced negative aspects of ayahuasca seekers who come to the community but do not interact with community members. The community wishes for visitors to understand the local way of life; Safety: The community wishes for ayahuasca seekers to feel safe and for the community to do all it can to reduce risks to safety at the site and during ceremonies. Therefore, the ESC has agreed to work with the community in early 2015 to implement and pilot test the Ayahuasca Health Guide, with its focus on visitor safety, the responsibility of ceremony organizers, and the ethical oath of healers to do no harm. The first version of the Ayahuasca Health Guide is being developed through community consultation. You too can read and contribute...
New podcast: How to stay safe when trying ayahuasca

New podcast: How to stay safe when trying ayahuasca

ESC Co-Founder and Executive Director Joshua Wickerham is featured on Amber Lyon’s Reset.Me podcast “How To Stay Safe When Trying Ayahuasca.” Listen to learn recommendations on how to choose a center that is best for you and the value of the “integration process.” Share this with your friends so they can gain from the podcast and learn about what the ESC is doing to work with communities and ayahuasca centers to improve safety and sustainability practices. Amber, an Emmy award-winning investigative journalist has shared the personal ayahuasca experiences which have transformed her...
Ayahuasca Dialogues podcast on Soundart Radio

Ayahuasca Dialogues podcast on Soundart Radio

The ESC’s Co-Founder and Executive Director, Joshua Wickerham joins Soundart Radio host and ESC Research and Outreach Coordinator Ellen Percival to discuss the founding of the ESC, as well as the ideas, experiences, and principles that are growing the organization. As ayahuasca demand grows, the ESC aims to ensure that traditional knowledge holders and practitioners benefit economically, socially and environmentally while keeping seekers safe. Listen for a broad overview of how the ESC is stewarding Plant Dialogues with healers, ayahuasca centers, policy makers, and other stakeholders to develop consensus on good practices around the safe use and sustainability of this important medicine. Listen now: http://www.ethnobotanicalcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/ESC-SoundArt-Podcast.mp3 Download MP3 file: ESC SoundArt...
ESC Advisors featured in BBC article on Ayahuasca

ESC Advisors featured in BBC article on Ayahuasca

ESC Special Advisor Dennis McKenna and Chief Advisor Joshua Wickerham were quoted in a BBC article “Why do people take Ayahuasca?” published April 29, 2014. This story copyright British Broadcasting Corporation, April 29, 2014: Why do people take ayahuasca? British student Henry Miller, 19, died in Colombia after apparently consuming the traditional hallucinogenic drink ayahuasca, or yage. Emma Thelwell, who took the drug herself, explains why it has become a rite of passage for some backpackers. I had never swallowed a pill at a party. Yet there I was in the depths of a Colombian bamboo forest, knocking back a liquid containing a psychoactive drug – under the supervision of a shaman who didn’t speak a word of English. During my month in Colombia I didn’t join the thousands of backpackers indulging in the country’s most famous product – cocaine. But I was sold on ayahuasca. I was intrigued by the fact that for centuries, South America’s indigenous societies have used this “teacher plant” in regular rituals. Ayahuasca, also known as yage, is a blend of two plants – the ayahuasca vine (Banisteriopsis caapi) and a shrub called chacruna (Psychotria viridis), which contains the hallucinogenic drug dimethyltryptamine (DMT). DMT – and therefore ayahuasca – is illegal in the UK, the US and many other countries. Ayahuasca could have serious implications for somebody who has a history of mental health problems, warns the UK’s Talk To Frank website. The drug could be responsible for triggering such a problem in those who are predisposed but unaware of it. But in South America ayahuasca is an integral part of some tribal societies. In 2008, Peru’s government...
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Due to sustained opposition from a small but significant portion of stakeholders, we have dissolved the Ethnobotanical Stewardship Council.

We are grateful for your support in increasing dialogue, learning with one another, and raising awareness about safer, more sustainable, and more reciprocal traditional plant use practices.

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