Take this short quiz to assess your mental and spiritual readiness for a psychedelic retreat.
By Roxanne Noor
5-MeO-DMT is quite new to modern-day culture, its usage beginning in the 1970s. However, through the years it has been quickly increasing in popularity, and there are a plethora of reasons why. The ceremonies are short, not physically demanding (no bucket), heart opening, and provide the universal wisdom we are so badly seeking.
This powerful psychedelic medicine is often referred to as the God molecule because its vibrational frequency is high, it brings one back to their essence, and in this play, we see the Godly nature of the self, that we are all consciousness fragmented.
5-MeO-DMT or Bufo, is sourced from a magical little desert dweller, the venom of the Sonoran Desert Toad, which is commonly found in the northwest of Mexico and the southwest of the United States. When the toad’s secretions are dried and vaporized or smoked, the healing properties are tremendous.
Another plant medicine more commonly known, having been part of South American rituals for over 1,000 years is Ayahuasca. This psychedelic plant medicine originated from indigenous tribes in Amazonia and has a much longer known history and lineage than 5-MeO-DMT.
There are spiritual rituals and specificities in the ceremony from the culture of the Amazonian people and the retreats have become exceedingly popular in places like Peru and Colombia.
This plant medicine is made up of a concentrated liquid that is brewed and combined with the Banisteriopsis Caapi vine (b caapi), known as the ayahuasca vine or sacred vine, and the leaves of the Psychotria Viridis shrub, the Chacruna plant. 5-MeO-DMT and mother ayahuasca contain the naturally occurring psychedelic substance DMT. This psychedelic substance naturally occurs in the body too, it induces hallucinations and visual effects.
Though both plant medicines contain somewhat similar components, the effects vary widely. The common thread is in the rapid increase of consciousness. When we are conscious of our inner landscapes and see the world clearly, our problems naturally dissipate. With the tremendous amount of scientific research and stories, both substances have the capability to heal mental illness, anxiety, depression, and addiction.
Apart from its healing properties and emotional benefits, there are other studied effects. Plant medicine helps us align with our higher purpose, scrub off the cultural conditioning that diminishes our self-worth, and helps us come back home to ourselves. Many CEOs, famous actors, and business people are now doing these plant medicines to increase their productivity and betterment in work and ongoing daily life.
Connecting back to consciousness helps us to become kinder leaders, better lovers, and more awakened beings. We are less reactive, less likely to project our insecurities, and have a more profound view of life. The world gravitates around you and opens with possibility as you escape the small ego, and enter into a higher version of yourself.
If you are someone who is interested in aligning with divine order and increasing consciousness, but have limited time and physical capacity, 5-MeO-DMT might be the right choice for you.
Ayahuasca can be quite taxing as we are confronted both emotionally and physically. For those who are sensitive and do not like to endure any physical pain or discomfort, 5-MeO-DMT is a great choice. When taking Ayahuasca the body is more vulnerable to uncontrollable defecation and vomiting.
5-MeO-DMT on the other hand, has almost no physical intensity. There is often a sense of losing the sensations of the body and entering the void or nothingness for many people. This is why many people experience an ego death, there is a supreme loss in the sense of self, which includes the body and its problems and pain.
During a 5-MeO-DMT ceremony, the body commonly shakes for some people, and for some others, there is bliss, a full body orgasm, a melting with the oneness. Either way, there is no vomiting at all or bucket required like for other plant medicines such as ayahuasca. There is not any physical pain for most people.
Ayahuasca as a spiritual ceremony can also be a very heavy experience for the body or the complete opposite, you can have almost no reaction to ayahuasca tea after three or four cups of the brew. It depends on many factors. So maybe you will be vomiting for hours on end, or maybe you will feel nothing. 5-MeO-DMT has more consistency in results.
In mental intensity, if one has the ability to surrender, Bufo can bring you to higher realms and the fifth dimension, breaking constructs of time and space.
Ayahuasca is very much in the spirit realm, where one can meet entities and access disembodied beings. Both are similar in mental intensity, but not in physical intensity. 5-MeO-DMT is light on the body and uplifting to the mind. Ayahuasca tea can be quite heavy for both the body and mind.
Bufo has relatively low risks. Our facilitator with several years of experience has done over 500 sessions and has not seen a single long-term mental breakdown or adverse reaction to the medicine. There can be anxiety and sleep distress if the mental sphere is clouded, but Behold Retreats creates an environment conducive to inner peace. Yoga, meditation, breathwork, massage, and access to professionals in therapy and coaching are available.
Bufo is extremely low risk and at Behold Retreats it is offered in such a way that the person can take a small micro dosage and increase it until they feel ready for the full dosage. Bufo is not mixed with other substances and is taken in a sacred space.
Ayahuasca has its risks mentally if there are mental issues that have not been cleared. Many times, suppressed memories arise and if space is not held carefully, extreme mental distress can occur.
When doing ayahuasca there can be high risks for those with a background of psychosis themselves or in their family line, and this can result in a sort of persistent psychosis. Also, certain medications are hazardous to the brain to be used in combination with Ayahuasca and can lead to a total depletion of serotonin and dopamine.
For many other retreats that are mostly focused on profit engineering, they will accept any client even if there are severe pre-existing mental health issues. At Behold Retreats we do proper screenings with licensed doctors and trained therapists to see if ayahuasca or a 5-MeO-DMT ceremony would be a good fit.
Based on the history of both psychedelic plant medicines, 5-MeO-DMT has fewer risks associated with it. The main risk with these medicines is in mixing them, which should never be done. Both are on their own journey, separate and sacred in their own uniqueness.
In the spirit realm, the concept of time and space cease to exist, but we must honor the fact that on this plane of reality they do. For those who do not want to vomit and defecate for six to twelve hours, and have limited time, Bufo is magical in its psychedelic intensity, as so much happens so quickly.
We all have commitments to time, and to the way in which we utilize the inherent scarcity and finiteness of it. Bufo feels like a full journey that lasts from hours to days, but on this physical plane of reality, it lasts only 30-90 minutes long. For those with limited time on their hands, but still have the need to connect to something deeper and divine, Bufo can get you there.
Ayahuasca is a heftier time commitment. The plant medicine ceremony can last up to six to twelve hours, and the after-effects last longer. There is a denser heavier feeling of coming back down into physical form.
Because 5-MeO-DMT has less bodily intensity, there naturally is less of a comedown after the ceremony is completed. There is a safe return back to the Earth realm. Coming back does not take hours and we can quickly get back into the flow of things without feeling left in another realm.
At Behold Retreats the aftercare is given with tools for integration, coaches to help with the emotional body, therapists to uncloud the mind, and chefs who provide proper nutritious food.
Yoga and meditation are done religiously and though the process is nothing like a yoga retreat, there is a merging of the knowledge from western medicine with the intuitive wisdom of sacred plant medicine.
5 MeO DMT is not filtered and processed by the digestive system, and in turn, it does not need the same amount of preparation as an ayahuasca retreat does. When taking Bufo there is more flexibility in diet and sexual activity. When partaking in an ayahuasca ceremony, there is more of an abstaining from things as one must be a completely clear vessel (especially to keep from vomiting even more).
There is a particular diet to be followed that people who are attached to their current diet may find difficult.
An ayahuasca diet is essential to increasing sensitivity in the body to the subtle energies during the ceremony and eliminating heightened body discomfort during the retreat. Food intake must be cut and contain less meat, dairy, sugars, and fried foods. Sexual activity even including watching porn should be eliminated or reduced greatly.
Unlike ayahuasca, Bufo does not require the same intensity and rigorousness of pre-care. There should be no alcohol or processed foods a few days before the ceremony in order to respect the medicine and its spiritual properties. For both plant medicines, there should be mediation integrated and no use of technology as it can be a distraction from healing.
After ayahuasca, some side effects can be difficulty in sleep and functioning normally. There is a higher sensitivity to life. Because the process is longer and more physically exhausting than Bufo (vomiting and defecating for hours), coming back down can be a heavier process. It can take days to come back into the self after ayahuasca and feel ‘normal’.
When doing 5-MeO-DMT there is a feeling of relaxation in the body afterward, and though the experience can be quite intense, the aftercare is not as stringent.
Whether you choose 5-MeO-DMT or ayahuasca, our trained coaches and therapists are essential outside of just shamanism, as they help to ground clients.
Many retreats will just throw you into the world after, for both Bufo and ayahuasca at Behold Retreats, we make sure you are enabled with the tools to integrate such a life-changing experience. This involves mediation, yoga, journaling, coaching, and being in touch with mother nature.
Though ayahuasca has a more rigorous pre-care and after-care journey and is more demanding physically, Bufo is not something to be taken lightly. It shatters frames of reality, which for people who have been conditioned to living outside of their inner truth, can experience overwhelm.
Bufo is not without its risks, but a high-quality retreat center and shaman will be sure to make the experience one of growth. As illusions of identity shatter, old traumas arise, and oneness begins, the coaches and shaman hold space.
Integration is just as crucial to the ceremony. You go so high up that it is important to know how to land back into the material plane. How to take the lessons and cultivate them into personal growth and wellness, rather than just move on back into ‘normal life'.
When researching retreat centers, do not be afraid to ask them questions over the phone and feel out how they respond and their level of awareness. Any reputable center will be happy to take the time to talk to you and make you feel safe and comfortable.
Behold Retreats is the leading choice for safe, high-end retreats with 5-MeO-DMT (Bufo Alvarius). Behold offers a 7-Week Coaching Program for optimized preparation and integration. Behold also offers both private and group retreats with 5-MeO-DMT in Mexico, Portugal, Costa Rica, and the Netherlands. Reach out to request a 1 on 1 discovery call.
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