Ancient Shipibo Song Medicine


Our remarkable curandero, Don Miguel will teach us about the significance of many of the Icaros’ that will be used throughout the sacred plant medicine ceremonies. This knowledge will be vital in helping us to access our greatest potential and realise deep healing and transformation. The next shipibo medicine introduced is often rapé tobacco

What are Icaros?

Icaros are sacred songs which are used for healing purposes by the curanderos of the Amazonian basin. 

Ayahuasca Icaros have traditionally been used to support communication with spirits and ancestors and to call in strength, guidance, healing and protection.

Curandero’s learn different Icaros’ to evoke different effects from their masters and many of these sacred songs are kept secret, known only by the curandero who will whistle the tune, whilst keeping the lyrics to himself. Icaros for many indigenous tribes native to the Amazon are integral to their spiritual traditions and the wellbeing of their communities.

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How are Icaros Used?

During our Ayahuasca ceremonies, Icaros’ will be used to deepen our connection with the spirits and ancestors of the land and to invite in the life-changing healing potential of the sacred plant medicines into our bodies, hearts and minds.

The Icaros’ that are recited throughout the Ayahuasca ceremonies can also support us in navigating what may be an unfamiliar experience of altered consciousness. The Ayahuasca Icaros’ help us to stay grounded and provide us with the courage we need to face our deepest fears.

Video: Noya Rao Icaro

Neska Neska Icaro Lyrics:

Maestro Don Miguel is teaching our students during the Noya Rao Remote Dieta this beautiful Icaro!

“Me siento muy feliz y bailo por encontrar una buena conexión con los dioses de Noya Rao, su mundo con mucho diseño, mucho luz y la tranquilidad de su espíritu y su alma. Que sea protegido desde los malos espiritos y curar mi hermanos y hermanos con la energía de las plantas, ángeles y dioses del cielo.”

I feel very happy, and I dance to find a good connection with the gods of Noya Rao, her world with a lot of design, a lot of light, and the tranquility of her spirit and her soul. May I be protected from evil spirits, and I can heal my brothers and sisters with the energy of plants, angels, and the gods of the heavenly sky.

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Improvements, Pricing Changes, and What’s On The Horizon For AYA Healing Retreats

While living mindfully in the present, we are always excited for the future and we have much in store for the coming year. Among other upgrades to better serve our guests, we will be:

  • adding new staff at the center that offer even better cleaning and laundry services
  • increasing the breadth and depth of training undertaken by our facilitators
  • offering more in-depth one-on-one preparation sessions to all of our guests, in addition to integration sessions
  • purchasing a Kangen machine for healthy, alkaline, antioxidant drinking water rich in minerals and purged of impurities.
  • purchasing additional medical equipment and continued medical training of staff for the safety of all, both here and in our community

Part of our improvement plans include raising our prices starting in 2024 to support our continuing efforts in improving everything that we do. With that said, we will always do our best to keep our prices attainable and within reach for as many people as possible, and we will also offer the possibility of discounts in a few different ways:

  • Earlybird discounts when you book your retreat in advance
  • Deep discounts for return attendees
  • Deep discounts for residents of Central and South America

We will continue to provide payment plans for all of our retreats, please contact us at to discuss options.

We are committed to prioritizing the quality of our retreats, giving you the most personalized and authentic experience possible, and caring for the health, safety, comfort and well-being of everyone who comes to AYA Healing Retreats.


Don Miguel

Shipibo Curandero

AKA Senen Yoi - 'Speaking the Truth'

Don Miguel was born into a Shipibo community called Roaboya on the River Ucayali. When Don Miguel was a child, Angel Sanchez Vargas, his grandfather was the community’s curandero. Vargas was an expert in sacred plant medicines and was frequently called upon to heal and share his spiritual wisdom with members of Roaboya. The school built some years later was named after Vargas and Roaboya went on to be recognised as the first indigenous community 114 years ago. Don Miguel grew up surrounded by the Shipibo wisdom and possess intimate knowledge of the sacred plant medicines. At a very young age he began his apprenticeship as a curandero through plant dietas under the supportive guidance of his grandfather. Miguel is also a trained literature professor and thoroughly enjoys teaching the Shipibo language and culture. Since 2012, Don Miguel has spent the bulk of his time leading lectures, workshops, initiation courses and retreats. Don Miguel will lead our Ayahuasca ceremonies, circle discussions and be available for personal consultations whilst on retreat.


Our comprehensive screening questionnaire has been developed in partnership with the International Centre for Ethnobotanical Education, Research and Service (ICEERS). Please take your time to answer it as honestly and with as much detail as possible. This information will remain strictly confidential and will only be used to assess your suitability for a place on retreat with AYA Healing Retreats and keep you safe

Please remember that the purpose of this screening questionnaire is to determine whether plant medicine healing is suitable for you…not whether you are suitable for plant medicine healing. Plant medicines are tools, like any other healing modality and like other tools for healing experiencing them entails certain risks. We need to make sure that our plant medicines will not compromise your wellbeing or harm you in any way before we allow you to begin your healing journey with us. In short, we care about your safety and we need to do what we can to ensure that during your time with us you are not at risk of harm. Plant medicines can be dangerous if the plants are not the right fit for the individual. Your answers to this questionnaire will help us to determine whether the plants we intend to use are going to help, rather than harm you

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