This blog has avoided sacred plant medicines for a very good reason. They are a trap, like so many pathways of knowledge, they give with the right hand and slap you with the left. But recently there was an opportunity to watch a ceremony of just such work and it propelled these words.
Carlos Casteneda noted in Conversations with a Nagual that if you are going to do a sacred plant medicine, better have a Don Juan there to make sure that you are not falling into the pitfalls of self importance. The ruthlessness of the guide or road man or medicine man is essential to ones practice. There is a good reason that Carlos later turned and denied that this path was a stable one for the warrior of freedom.
To date, no one has ever had an initial altered experience with these plant allies and not eventually run smack dab into their personal inventory. The personal inventory is loaded with perceptions and structures of ones own life, the habit of the habit, of the pain of the pain. Most habits are just stories we hold on to and act upon unconsciously. Thus in the first stages of this practice, the allies just holds up a mirror to our own shit. Everyone runs right into death and fear because shifting the assemblage point away from its fixed position is a form of death. This is why the onset of the plant is called the body wall. The body holds onto the patterns of our present life and the patterns we don’t want to let go of. Some spend whole journeys just playing with this pattern, or messaging their self-importance with ego justifications of their pathetic lives. Seeing people heighten their awareness and justify how great their current life is is pathetic and lacks recapitulation. But it is the first stage.
If the participant is a warrior of freedom, they will see and integrate this initial stage and spend a lot of time recapitulating their lives gaining sobriety with themselves before taking the next journey. Thus they can blow past the first doorway of perception, the body wall, the mold of man, the fixation of the assemblage point. Plant allies help to dislodge the assemblage point and can intend one to other bands of awareness. Given this initial step and a practice while not on a plant medicine, the journey can open one to the realms of knowledge and awareness not connected to our own. We can wander away from the village. We can seek answers and knowledge and bring back some amazing insights, if we loop it back to a practice of working on our assemblage point’s increasing fluidity while not on medicines.
The third stage navigator of the plant allies moves into a place of pure abstraction. The knowledge is that of seeing energy directly, of how energy works within the world, of how all things assemble their energy into bands of awareness. Awareness is the key! There are thousands of stories and experiences that people have at this stage. Many share these altered states as though they have discovered a new religion. They formulate vast structures of stories from altered states and believe them to be more real than reality itself. Reminded of the machine elves, these distracted masters will share their stories and people will follow these stories and the newest guru… but the warrior of awareness sees all of this as just expanding the scope and depth of the inventory (the fixated point of it) and this roots one in creating more traps of attention. Recapitulate it all and don’t buy another’s story (even the best guru stories) unless you just want to repeat someone else’s shift of the assemblage point.
The forth stage is one of recognizing that this new found fluidity can led one with discipline to be able to shift without medicine at all. Recently walking in the desert among red rocks, it became obvious that energy was bouncing along the path, a ball of energy moving through the trees which were their own form of energy. Like being on a plant ally, it was just awareness that shifted away from the ordinary fixation of the assemblage point into pure seeing. Allies help us to see, but repetition of the allies makes us crazy… like doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results, or worse, the same.
The ardent practitioner realizes this and practices shifting the assemblage point without the crutches. The more we practice the less frequent the need for the plant allies. As Don Juan noted to Carlos, he used the plant allies because Carlos was so dense and fixed and the extreme act of doing them allowed for the knowledge of shifting to become grounded in the practice. Plus it trapped Carlos onto the path of sorcery as he thought it was supposed to be, never realizing that there is so much more to the path than plant medicines.
Most of the current media surrounding the popularity of plant allies in the positive has become like a religion of salvation… or just another way to say you can’t do it without help. And most of what is out there is people’s personal crap being barfed all over the place or the marginal beliefs in aliens, spirits, inorganic beings, another world etc which they say is more valuable than this one. This is not to say that these other worlds don’t exist, rather that they are just as much of a trap as this one. Ask yourself what are they trying to escape? Escapism is a form of morbidity and the warrior makes death an advisor not a lover…. These gurus and neophites are not being responsible for their own inventory, responsible for the shift of the assemblage point. Don’t get caught in the other person’s story!!!!
Entheogens is a word meaning experience or union with god and it could be replaced by Ensophiagens, the experience of wisdom. It takes a disciplined warrior of freedom to realize the god trap, and even more disciplined to know that knowledge from these other perceptions is just as big a trap. Wisdom comes with a grounded practice, not in doing tons of medicine plants. Self importance is the constant battle of the warrior. Plant Allies and the discipline of these journeys is no exception to this rule.
All ceremonies and journeys are the realm of the morbid fascination we have with the fact that we will die and is there a next moment after that? Question is, can one actually look directly into that existential crisis, over the cliff into the dark sea of awareness and say, “And now what?”
Be careful warriors, this is not a necessary territory to the practice of freedom, though it may be full of very pretty colors, lights, and heightened elation of being alive. “Yes,” the initiate says, “I survived and am still alive!” Survived to do what?