The energy cultivated during retreat can inspire a lifetime of growth and personal transformation. But it can be a challenge to transmit insight into action unless we build support systems.
After a retreat you’ll understand yourself and your surroundings in new ways but might have difficulty to cope with the fact that the world you return to will be the same world you left behind. It’s possible you’ll fall back into old habits you thought you were leaving behind. Therefore, you will need to be ready by creating a support system that you can use in order to continue with your growth. Developing an effective support system involves trying new things, expressing ourselves, observing ourselves, and embracing empowering relationships.
Here are some basic possibilities of how to establish your support system post-retreat. And remember, don’t be deceived by the illusion that what others are doing in their spiritual practice is what you should do as well. Be open towards discovery and experiment, but afterward cultivate the practices that work best for what you need to honor your highest self. There is nothing more spiritual than this. Here are some ideas of where you go to develop an effective support system:
The wonderful thing about meditation is that there is no right or wrong way to do it. All that is important is to develop a consistency of practice and to honor your intentions. One amazing way to get started is to attend a Vipassana meditation retreat. There is a lot of great work that you can do through your own practice of meditation, but a meditation retreat will allow you the with a space free of distractions, meals provided for, respect for a noble silence, support from experienced facilitators. Vipassana meditation is the oldest, purest lineage of meditation that there is, descending from the teachings of Buddha himself. And in order to assure that all beings of the earth have the chance to participate, they run strictly off of donation. To find out more about Vipassana meditation, visit https://www.dhamma.org/.
Seek new knowledge
So many of us arrive to work with ayahuasca seeking healing from being oversaturated within information saturated world of our present day, so it may seem contrary to the teaching you’ve received from mother ayahuasca. But it’s also important to know that we are never alone in this voyage. The lessons we learn through ayahuasca are universal. Read wisdom-filled texts both ancient and modern, watch movies that stimulate your higher mind, go online to find out more about the growing worldwide ayahuasca community that you’ve made yourself a part of. Seek the types of knowledge that will help you to become the type of person who you dream of becoming.
Cultivate healthy relationships and break with those that aren’t
In taking steps to cultivate healthy relationships, here are some questions to ask yourself that might be helpful: Who has been there to honor your highest self, even in the times that you’ve felt you’ve lost your way? In what ways could you offer gratitude to these people in ways that you haven’t before? And in regards to energy you might ask yourself: are there relationships in my life that getting in the way of me achieving my true power? Do I have relationships with others that are preventing them from reaching their true power? And what can be done to change these things?
In the end, building healthier relationships comes down to communication and honesty. When this doesn’t work, you’re probably involved in a toxic relationship that it might be best for you to leave behind. Ayahuasca can help cultivate profound inner shifts, and you must be ready to cope with the fact that not everybody will be ready to change with you. When it becomes necessary for you to break with past relationships, do it with the compassion that you know all creatures deserve: offer thanks for the great things they have given you along the way and wish the absolute best for their future path. In doing this, you will both be better off.
Take the plunge into new activities
All forms of healing require that you leave behind what doesn’t serve you in order open yourself towards new energies. We need to be awake, to become the forces of change within a world that inevitably changes with every passing moment. The simplest and most effective way to do this is by being physically active. The most obvious thing would be to start a daily habit of practicing yoga. But don’t do yoga because you see people around you doing it and they look like they are spiritual. Do yoga because you’re understanding your body in a deeper way, because you are finding a way to transcend your petty daily worries to find total bliss. And if yoga isn’t right for you, then start a daily routine with activities that are. Try tai-chi, qigong, swimming, or running. Join a soccer league. Start going on daily hikes. You get the idea. Just be active and make it consistent.
By the nature of being alive and being the miraculous creations that we are, we in turn are creators as well. Celebrate this. Go ahead and laugh at whatever voice inside is telling you that you are not an artist and that it should be left to the those other freaks of the world. This is a lie and it’s time to expose it as such. You have just gone through a life changing experience and there is a depthless magic within you that you have to share. That you need to share because others deserve to see it. Take a hammer (metaphorically), and shatter yourself out of the shell that is holding you back from pure unhindered self-expression. Having trouble knowing where to start? Consider reading the book “The Artist’s Way,” by Julia Cameron. It’s sold millions of copies for good reason: it was written for anybody and everybody who wants to connect with their artistic self.
Seek guidance from those with progress along this path
Don’t forget that you aren’t alone! There are so many places where you can reach out for support. So often all we need is just a little nudge or just somebody to talk to. Is there somebody in your life you can turn to for an insightful conversation every now and then? What about visiting a therapist or getting involved in an online community of other ayahuasceros who might be going through, or who have already gone through what you are experiencing? Is there staff at the healing center you attended who are available for continued support? Regardless if you have visited our healing center or not, we are always available to support you in your journey as well. Do feel free to reach out if you feel the call.
You can never do this often enough. Take a few moments every day to realize the miracle that you are, that is all around you, all the special beings you have in your life. Even those who have hurt you in the past—give thanks, now that you’ve forgiven and transcended, for whatever lessons they have allowed you to learn. Maybe there is not a whole lot to say about giving thanks though, since madre ayahuasca can be so clear to us in showing what we have to be thankful. Whatever this medicine helped you to sense, continue to honor this wisdom and do not let go. Beyond all challenges you encounter, hold true to giving thanks.
Last words? Whatever you just read, don’t even listen to it. Hold true to what feels right for you
Yes, that’s right. You might have read this all for nothing. There is absolutely no reason for you to stick to any prescribed path unless you know it works for you. Hopefully, there are tidbits within this article that resonate with you. Take this insight and run with it. But while you construct your support system post-ceremony, it is so important not to overcomplicate things. Take the process breath by breath. Honor your journey as a process. Our paths towards healing are endless. Smile and look at where you’ve came from; enjoy the ride.
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