Aya Healing Retreats

HEALING TRAUMA: A SOMATIC EXPERIENCING & AYAHUASCA RETREAT

Overview

Somatic Experiencing (SE) is, simply put, a bio-physiological approach to healing trauma. A pioneer in trauma healing and Somatic Experiencing Founder, Dr. Peter Levine states: “Shamanistic cultures view illness and trauma as a problem for the entire community, not just the individual … People in these societies seek healing as much for the good of the whole as for themselves.” (Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma)

Trauma is a fact of life. It has become so commonplace that most people do not even realize its impact or presence. Trauma is felt by all of us at some stage in our lives and does not result only from what is commonly thought to be its cause: shock trauma from abuse or attack. Trauma can be experienced through misfortune or during routine passages of life, such as surgery, medical and dental procedures, anesthesia, illnesses, and accidents and injuries. Inappropriate or harsh behavior by parents, teachers, and peers, as well as betrayal, financially hard times and the pressure of societal and cultural expectations, can all cause trauma, not only events such as the loss of a loved one, robbery or witnessing violence.

Traumatic symptoms are not caused by the “triggering” of the event itself. They stem from the frozen residue of energy that has not been resolved and discharged; this energy remains trapped in the system, where it can wreak havoc on our mind and body.

Held within the symptoms of trauma are the very energies, potentials, and resources necessary for their constructive transformation. Ayahuasca is a profound tool in healing trauma, and with the support of Somatic Experiencing, our healing can deepen enormously, as Somatic Experiencing helps the nervous system to resolve the trauma that the plant medicines can bring up in ceremonies, to inspire and integrate new levels of healing, mastery, and wisdom.

Healing Trauma With Somatic Experiencing (SE)

SE addresses our primary nervous system functioning. It resolves stuck symptoms of past adverse events that remain in non-cognitive regions of the brain, such as; relational, developmental or shock trauma.

During our Ayahuasca retreat in Spain, the somatic approach will allow us to be more aware and settled in the felt-sense of our physical restrictions and emotional contractions.

Through moment-to-moment awareness of sensations in your body, SE aims to gently re-establish the natural flow of your life energy, supporting the safe release of symptoms and energy from the nervous system. In SE sessions, we release the past experiences of trauma and restore your body, heart, and mind into a relaxed wholeness.

Healing Trauma with a holistic and comprehensive understanding of trauma and somatic psychology. The SE individual and group sessions customize an integrative approach depending on personal need, which includes a holistic framework in the psychological, social/cross-cultural, emotional, physiological, and developmental areas of life.

Your Experience

What to expect on your retreat?

Your Experience

What to expect on your retreat?

The Dieta

  • 4 Ayahuasca Ceremonies
  • 4 Group SE sessions
  • 5 Art and Movement Therapy
  • Trauma Education Workshops
  • 1 Individual SE session
  • Your Noya Rao Dieta
  • Personalized consultations and individualized plant medicine treatment from Maestra Juana
  • Active participation in brewing the sacred plant medicines – both the ayahuasca and chosen master plant.

Comfort

  • Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • 11-Nights in a Private lakeside jungle Bungalow (a Tambo)
  • Washing and Laundering of clothing
  • Transportation from Iquitos (and back)

Shipibo Tradition & Grounding Exercises

  • Sound Healing Journey
  • Yoga & Meditation Practices
  • Purifying Flower and Vapour Baths by the Riverside
  • Icaros (chanting) chosen specifically for each ceremony by the curandero

Integration

  • Intimate circle discussions the morning after ceremonies.
  • Dedicated integration ceremony on your final day
  • Full translations from Spanish or Shipibo to English
  • Private follow-up integration sessions via Skype
  • Access to private Facebook group

Optional Activities

  • Guided hikes through the epic Amazon rainforest, learning about local plant and wildlife

Diet

Whilst on retreat we will enjoy three superb meals per day, freshly prepared by the team at our center. On the days of our Ayahuasca ceremonies, we will restrict this to 2 meals, the last one is not to be eaten after 2pm. All meals are prepared with the best local ingredients and will be mostly vegetarian with the occasional river fish and organic chicken. Please let us know if you have special dietary needs.

All meals will be free from: Sugar, Oil, Salt, Pork, Alcohol, Red Meat

You will also be expected to refrain from communicating via phone, text, and email for the duration of the retreat.

Noya Rao and Trauma

Noya Rao which is otherwise known as “The Tree of Light” or “Camino a la Verdad” – The Path of Truth is a mythical plant, of which there are only three in the entire Amazon Basin. Noya Rao has belonged to and been used in sacred ceremony by the Mahua Shipibo traditions for centuries. Noya Rao is known for its capacity to activate intuition in the student, promote mental clarity and to increase one’s capacity for organized thought. Coupling a Master Plant Dieta with silence heightens Noya Rao’s capacity to promote profound healing and to reveal important insights to the student. Silence alone enables us to become aware of subtle sensations, thoughts, feelings, and messages within; taking time to simply be with oneself without distraction and mindless chatter can help us to become aware of that within us that needs to be let go of, or embraced. In short, silence on its own enables us to glimpse wounds that need our attention and to contemplate what we want from our lives. Noya Rao is, therefore, the perfect companion for this retreat as it accelerates this process of connection and recognition of the wounds within that need transmutation, whilst giving the student the courage needed to make positive changes in their behavior and to let go of their limiting beliefs.

September 23th – Oct. 3rd 2022

Schedule

Open your heart and connect to a truely profound medicine. Spread over 11 days, this course offers students the opportunity for a one-of-a-kind healing experience.

Fully translated in real time from Spanish to English. All courses will be recorded and students will receive lifetime access.

Healing Trauma Retreat Schedule

3 pm – 5 pm: Arrival & Settling in
5 – 5.30 pm: Break
5.30 – 7.30 pm: Group Intention Setting Workshop
7.30 – 9 pm: Dinner
9 pm onwards: Silence

7.30 – 9 am: Morning Yoga & Meditation Practice
9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Individual Consultation with Maestra Juana
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
2 – 6 pm: Individual Consultation with Maestra Juana
6 – 7 pm: Break
7 – 8 pm: Ceremony guideline
8 pm onwards: 1st Ceremony

9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast or fasting
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Group Sharing/ SE Group Circle
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch or fasting
2 – 5 pm:  Working with Ayahuasca and Master Plant workshop
5 – 6.30 pm: Gentle Yoga & Meditation
7.30 – 8.30 pm: Dinner or fasting
8.30 – 9.30 pm: Noya Rao ceremony
9.30 pm onwards: Silence

7.30 – 9 am: Morning Yoga & Meditation Practice
9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Group Workshop with Atira
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
3 – 5.30 pm: Individual Sessions with Atira or Maestra Juana
5.30 – 7 pm: Break
7 – 8 pm: Gentle Somatic Yoga & Meditation
8 pm: 2nd Ceremony

9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Healing Trauma: Group SE session with Atira
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
3 – 5 pm: Individual Sessions with Atira or Maestra Juana
5 – 6.30: Gentle Yoga & Meditation with Atira
6.30 – 9 pm: Dinner
8 – 9 pm: Noya Rao Ceremony

7.30 – 9 am: Morning Yoga & Meditation Practice
9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Healing Trauma: Group Workshop with Atira
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
3 – 5.30 pm: Workshop with Elio/ SE Individual Sessions with Atira
5.30 – 7 pm: Break
7 – 8 pm: Gentle Somatic Yoga & Meditation
8 pm: 3rd Ceremony

9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Group SE session with Atira
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
2 – 5 pm: Individual Sessions with Atira or Maestra Juana
5 – 6.30: Gentle Yoga & Meditation
6.30 – 7.30 pm: Break
7.30 – 9 pm: Dinner

7.30 – 9 am: Morning Yoga & Meditation Practice
9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Healing Trauma: Group Workshop with Atira
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
3 – 5 pm: Workshop with Elio/ SE Individual Sessions with Atira
6 – 7.30 pm: Gentle Yoga & Meditation
7.30 – 9 pm: Dinner
9 pm onwards: Silence

7.30 – 9 am: Morning Yoga & Meditation Practice
9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Shipibo market
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
2 – 3 pm: Flower Baths
3 – 5.30 pm: Workshop with Elio/ SE Individual Sessions with Atira
5.30 – 7 pm: Break
7 – 8 pm: Gentle Somatic Yoga & Meditation
8 pm: 4th Ceremony

9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Group SE session with Atira
12.30 – 2 pm: Lunch
2 – 3 pm: Flower bath
 – 5 pm: Integration Workshop with Elio
5 – 6.30: Gentle Yoga & Meditation with Atira
6.30 – 7.30 pm: Break
7.30 – 9 pm: Dinner
9 pm onwards: Silence

7.30 – 9 am: Morning Yoga & Meditation Practice
9 – 10.30 am: Breakfast
10.30 – 12.30 pm: Closing
12.30 pm: Pack up and Goodbyes

Transform

Receive the deep healing you deserve

Nestled along the Amazon river lies El encanto de Chullachaqui, our retreat center, where you will find a tranquil setting which inspires change, facilitates healing, and will help you realize your full potential

Legendary Shipibo Healers, Caring Facilitators

Meet the team

Maestra Juana

Elio Guesa

Photo of Woman from Ayahuasca Retreat

“This trip was a dream. It far exceeded my expectations. I felt so welcomed and comfortable, but it also challenged me in ways I didn’t even know could happen. 

 – Jessica Farrelli

Atira Tan Portrait Photo

Post Retreat Support

Following your retreat, you will receive one individual 1 hour support session with our integration specialist. The sessions will be scheduled at 1 month post retreat will be delivered by Atira Tan (MA Art Therapy Dip Transpersonal Art Therapy, SEP). Atira has over 13 years’ experience working in trauma recovery and is deeply passionate about the transformative potential of sacred plant medicines. In your integration sessions, you can expect to be listened to with compassion by a dedicated professional that has experienced sacred plant medicine herself. Atira will guide you using Somatic ExperiencingTM principles, helping you to locate within you the resources and wisdom needed to preserve with your healing journey. These sessions will offer you the opportunity to discuss your sacred medicine experiences, including any visions you may have witnessed and to work through tangible solutions to any real-world problems you are facing that are preventing you from fully integrating this work.

Embark on your journey

Interested in flexible pricing options? Speak to our program coordinator today

Optional Upgrades

11-Day Trauma Healing Retreat

Somatic Experiencing
$ 2150
  • 11 Nights Accomodation, 2-3 Meals Per Day
  • 4 Group SE Sessions, 5 Art and Movement Therapy Sessions
  • 4 Ayahuasca Ceremonies
  • Your Noya Rao Dieta
  • World Class Safety Standards
  • 1 on 1 Post Retreat Integration Session

Not hearing the call?

Check out your options

Pre-Application

Not Included

  • Your personal accommodation in Portugal
  • Your airfares to and from Portugal and transportation to and from Lisbon
  • Your travel insurance
  • Your Schengen area visa (if necessary)
  • Personal expenses and meals whilst in Portugal
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Don Miguel

also known as 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 at the Ayahuasca Foundation where he supports his brother, Don Enrique in 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.

Lindsey Wise

Vocal Awakening Guide, SoulSong Revival

Lindsey Wise

Lindsey has spent the last decade gathering people from all over the world to sing healing medicine songs and mantras. She’s the founder of Global Sisters Song Circle and Global Song Circle that gathers on new and full moons. She uses music and movement to break down the emotional and energetic barriers that keep women stifled.

Following the birth of her first child, Lindsey Wise bled to death. During this Near-Death Experience, she found herself surrounded by multitudes of light beings, who initiated her into the world of subtle energies and healing vibrations. At that moment, she realized that all beings create their own unique vibration—their soul song. Each person’s soul song makes up the great Choir of Life.

Lindsey’s work is to awaken humanity to the healing power of the voice. She has traveled the world and the astral realms, cultivating healing techniques to help people awaken to the power of their own voice and to the healer within. Lindsey is an E-RYT 500 certified yoga teacher. She blends yoga, breathwork, guided journeys, energetic healing, and community song to help people overcome fear and anxiety and to clear the energetic blocks that limit expression.

For more about Lindsey: www.lindseywise.com

Atira Tan

Trauma Specialist - Integration Support

Atira Tan Portrait Photo

Hailing from her native Singapore Atira Tan, now based in Melbourne Australia, has over 15 years experience healing trauma through yoga, mindfulness, art, and counseling. Atira has a Master’s Degree in Art Therapy from Latrobe University, Melbourne, she was featured on TED X, is the founder of Art to Healing and the annual international Yogathon event, Yoga for Freedom. Atira works extensively throughout Asia and Australia in various projects that are centered around healing and empowering women and girls who have been sexually abused and violated through the sex trafficking industry.

From 2004 onwards, Atira established numerous clinical art therapy and trauma recovery programs and has partnered with international organizations to bring art therapy, somatic therapies, yoga, mindfulness to the refugee camps of Burma, the war zones of Cambodia, the brothels of Kathmandu, regions devastated by earthquakes in Nepal and to remote Aboriginal communities in Australia. In addition to her not-for-profit work, Art to Healing, Atira works as a clinician and clinical supervisor in Australia and the Asia Pacific region and as an educator in Transpersonal Art Therapy. Like Elio, Atira is dedicated to creating the space for transformative experiences to occur for each participant. She is the head of our integration team and as well as teaching yoga on selected retreats, she will facilitate your post-retreat integration sessions via Skype.

More about Atira Tan: atiratan.com

“My mission is to inspire others to step into their TRUTH, to LOVE themselves wholeheartedly and to EMPOWER their unique EXPRESSION in the world.”

Maestra Juanita

also known as Isa Yaka- Little Bird

Maestra Juanita

Maestra Juana was born into the Shipibo community of Pahoyan, one of the most powerful Shipibo healing lineages in the Peruvian Amazon. She is around 60 years old, however her exact age is unknown.She has been studying for more than 35 years under Maestra Manuela, Papa Gilberto and Papa Bejamin, who are all members of the highly-respected curandero family, the Mahua family. Juana began her dieta on the mythical Amazonian tree Noya Rao when she was just 20 years old and has dedicated her life to the path of healing ever since. Juana is also very learned in the workings of the human body, possessing an excellent knowledge of the bones and skeletal system. Juana specialises in bone massage and will be available on the Noya Rao retreat to provide our guests with this unique healing experience. We are delighted to have Juana’s expertise, depth of wisdom and fun loving spirit with us on the Noya Rao retreat.

Elio Guesa

Founder - Lead Facilitator

Elio Guesa

Originally from Italy, and now living in Melbourne Australia, Elio Geusa is the founder of AYA Healing Retreats. Elio is a qualified Social Worker and has over thirteen years experience working both on national and international humanitarian projects. He has worked with people living with intellectual disabilities and mental health conditions. He has also had the privilege of supporting refugee populations to overcome the trauma of displacement throughout Asia, Europe, and Australia. Elio believes that compassionate and inspired action can create meaningful change in the world.
Elio’s grandfather was a highly-respected healer in a small village in southern Italy. From a young age, Elio was drawn to healing as a profession after witnessing the profound differences his grandfather made in the lives of members of their community.

In 2009, Elio encountered the plant medicine, Ayahuasca for the first time. Convinced of its power to cure the incurable, Elio began an apprenticeship under the guidance of Maestro, Vegetalista Manaco Manain. Since 2009 he has continued to deepen his knowledge, experience, and understanding of the workings of the sacred plant medicines, studying the Shipibo traditions under the revered Mahua family and has undertaken numerous Master Plant Dietas with well-respected curanderos in the Peruvian Amazon.

This immersion in the sacred plant medicines of the indigenous peoples of Peru enabled Elio to experience deep and profound healing. He has overcome crippling anxiety and anger as a result of traumatic childhood experiences, healing that was not possible through the Western medical paradigm. His renewed sense of self-worth, love, compassion, and empathy for himself enables him to extend those same qualities to others.

Elio founded AYA Healing Retreats because he is convinced of the healing potentialities of sacred plant medicines. Not only does he hope to share the indigenous wisdom of the ancient traditions of the tribe’s peoples of the Amazon, but he also intends to invest part of AYA Healing Retreats profits into humanitarian projects that are creating a more compassionate world.

Elio is committed to creating a safe, enjoyable, transformative experience for every participant, whilst on retreat please don’t hesitate to approach Elio for help and support as you navigate the complexities of your healing journey.

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Application

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