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Ayahuasca Medicine: The Shamanic World of Amazonian Sacred Plant Healing [Kindle Edition]

Alan Shoemaker
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

An insider’s account of the journey to become an ayahuasquero, a shaman who heals with the visionary vine ayahuasca

• Details the author’s training and life as a curandero using ayahuasca medicine, San Pedro cactus, tobacco purges, psychedelic mushrooms, and other visionary plants  

• Offers first-hand accounts of miraculous healing where ayahuasca revealed the cause of the illness, including how the author healed his mother from liver cancer

• Shows how “ayahuasca tourism” symbolizes the Western world’s reawakening need to connect with the universal life force

For more than 20 years American-born Alan Shoemaker has apprenticed and worked with shamans in Ecuador and Peru, learning the traditional methods of ayahuasca preparation, the ceremonial rituals for its use, and how to commune with the healing spirit of this sacred plant as well as the spirit of the San Pedro cactus and other sacred plant allies. Now a recognized and practicing ayahuasquero, or ayahuasca shaman, in Peru, he offers an insider’s account of the ayahuasca tradition and of its use for expanding consciousness and achieving healing through access to other dimensions of being.

Shoemaker details his training and his own curandero practice using ayahuasca medicine, tobacco purges, psychedelic mushrooms, and other visionary plants. He discusses the different traditions of his two foremost teachers and mentors, Don Juan in the Peruvian Amazon, an ayahuasquero, and Valentin in Ecuador, a San Pedro shaman. He reveals the indispensable role played by icaros, the healing songs of the plant shaman, and offers firsthand accounts of miraculous healing resulting from ayahuasca’s ability to reveal the cause of an illness, including how he healed his mother from liver cancer.

The author also addresses the rising popularity of Northerners traveling to the Amazon to seek healing and mind expansion through ayahuasca and shows how this fascination is triggered by humanity’s reawakening need to connect to the universal life force.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2900 KB
  • Print Length: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Park Street Press (1 Feb. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00I7V1A6M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #296,830 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Having decided to plan a visit to Peru some time in 2014 i decided to do my research into the world of Ayahuasca before my trip. I had many doubts and worries about this as I had heard different tales of good and bad Curenderos.
The book gives a good insight into this world and answered many of the questions I had in my mind about what to expect.
I found the whole story of how the writer through many synchronicities ended up in Iquitos in Peru but before this he trained first in Equador with San Perdro plant before continuing his journey into Peru.
A recent experience with a plant, left me wondering how the mind can be used for the healing our own body and his story answered part of the question.
This book has made me more eager to discover more about Ayahuasca and the traditions of the Curenderos.
I highly recommend this book to those who have an interest in this subject.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars interesting but ultimately unsatisfying 27 Dec. 2014
By FDR
Format:Paperback
This is not a bad book, but it's nothing more than a series of anecdotes about how the author became a curandero, along with his general thoughts on the subject. This book is short enough it could have been a pamphlet. I expected more substance and more eloquence. Having drunk ayahuasca myself, I found Alan's anecdotes entertaining but ultimately unsatisfying. Interesting themes were barely touched.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  19 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant and informative read. 25 Feb. 2014
By William Belmont - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is probably the best book I've read about Ayahuasca & the plant medicines. Over two decades ago I started reading the works of Terence McKenna. His works formulated many questions in my mind. Alan Shoemaker's book answered those questions. If I had any criticism of this book, it would be that it was too short.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stellar 4 Feb. 2014
By Passin' Through - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This journey of this book for me began in 1999 in Iquitos when I bought Alan Shoemaker’s laptop computer. After paying a fair amount, I opened the window and there sat a single large word document titled Grace and Madness. Alan had said, ‘The computer comes loaded,’ but I didn’t expect this, the first version of his wonderful autobiography that has expanded to become Ayahuasca Medicine.

The autobiography was well-written and, more importantly, from an insider’s view. Really the text could be called Autobiography of Ayahuasca, as if the ‘medicine’, as shamans claim, has a personality.

Two Caucasians figure prominently into the history of ayahuasca tourism with its Iquitos roots. One is Peter Gorman (Ayahuasca in My Blood) who is ‘ground zero’ for the medicine, and the second is his amigo Alan Shoemaker. Where Peter ‘discovered’ and brought ayahuasca to the Western world, Alan seeded it around the world and eight years ago initiated the first ongoing International Shaman Conferences each July in Iquitos.

I dubbed the pair Grace and Madness after the account I had read on the laptop, and you will find out why, and which is witch, after reading the Five Star account of Ayahuasca Medicine.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Read 10 Mar. 2014
By Ishmael - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a good read for anyone considering a trip to Iquitos, and/or a relationship with ayahuasca. It is somewhat autobiographical and full of interesting anecdotes sprinkled with insightful safety tips and other advice based on hard lessons learned through personal experience. With a Foreword by Peter Gorman, this book is complete.

An easy read and a real page turner. It has a beginning, middle, and an end. No fluff. No fill. No droning on and on about things we don't care about. It's just right.
Alan Shoemaker is candid in his approach and speaks with authority. Clearly, he has walked the walk and there is much we can learn from his experiences.

A few lines that caught my eye...
pg12. "A quick glance through the book showed that his roots were also firmly entrenched in Krishna consciousness, of which he was a devotee."

pg13. "You can feel the psychotropic medicine moving through your body, lingering in areas that need attention, activating the immune system to rectify the problem, he explained."

pg23. " For example, I refuse to mention the name of...the _____, and I hesitate to say it here for you now, just to underscore my point, because I believe to do so feeds that energy, it gives it live." (thanks Alan, me too)

pg77. " The languages that come with an icaro can be incredibly complicated and can contain more than one tongue"

pg81. "The only other accoutrement was a white towel that he placed around his shoulders. Before he began the ceremony he placed it over his head with only his face exposed, which gave him a saintlike appearance."

pg97. (on spirits) "Some may also desire to use your body."

pg97. "This is why you shouldn't fall asleep during any ritual."

pg100. "A spirit that will perform something for you that is unethical or immoral, is evil."

Pg102 " ...you must diet for a minimum of a week, following the same prescription of no salt, oil, sugar, o sex."

Thanks again Alan for taking the time to write out your story and share it with the rest of us. I am sure this was no easy task. Writing books is hard work. I liked this book and rank it among the best aya books right up there with "Aya in my Blood", Gorman, and Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss",D. McKenna.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lotus Guide Review 16 April 2014
By Rahasya Poe - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Ayahuasca Medicine: The Shamanic World of Amazonian Sacred Plant Healing
By Alan Shoemaker
ISBN-13: 978-1-62055-193-6 (Park Street Press, 2014)

Reading what Alan had to say about his journey through the shamanic world of Ayahuasca brought me back to my last journey, which interestingly enough was last month. Ayahuasca is a teacher and will teach only what you are ready for and this book really brings this out. If you are thinking of taking this journey, I advise you to read this book to see the amazing opportunity that’s waiting for you. This plant has been communicating with humans for at least 40,000 years to cultures that have not made it illegal, but don’t get me started on that.

Rahasya Poe, Lotus Guide
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read.!!! 5 April 2014
By John Bolduc - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great read, very informative and a lot of captivating stories. I love how Alan brings out the truthfulness and honesty about Ayahuasca medicine and the tips he gives if one is to go to Peru and experience the medicine. A profound and honest read from the eyes of someone who hasn't just talked the talk but walked the walk in so many ways. Thought provoking and sincere. Peru here I come to discover and experience Mother Aya and the magic that is Peru.
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