Ayahuasca Retreats in Costa Rica 215.310.1250



New Life Ayahuasca Overall rating: ★★★★★ 5 based on 96 reviews
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Shamanic Value

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Just before I traveled to New Life, I was given a book. It was a coincidence that the book was Stone Age Wisdom and that it was about shamanism. More important, it was something that I needed to read at just that moment – such are the synchronicities that pop up in your life if you’re ready to notice them. I knew a lot about Ayahuasca from reading and listening to Terrence McKenna. But I had given almost no thought to the other important factor in Ayahuasca ceremonies – the shaman. Author Tom Crockett wrote his book to demystify the function played by those who facilitate, host and present the ceremonies. His central premise is that shamanic work is about helping people to learn about and to heal themselves. You don’t have to be from a traditional culture and you don’t need a PhD in Shamanistic Studies. You just need to understand – intellectually and viscerally – the value of the rituals and pre-modern practices that can be so effective with or without the plant medicines. I feel very lucky that I ended up at a retreat with Matthew Mormello. The whole experience certainly engaged me in profound ways. Matt has obviously been trained well by traditional mentors but his background as an American helped make him and the ceremonies that much more amenable. He never refers to himself as a shaman but Matt’s efforts impressed me for their balance of wild energy and ceremonial dignity. I haven’t experienced so-called real shaman so I don’t know what I missed. But from what I know from reading is that Matt set the perfect tone and ambiance in which Mother Ayahuasca could do her magic. The experience can be a little intimidating so the other value provided by Matt and his partner Janae is safety. They really care about taking care of people. The feeling you get is love. They love what they’re doing. They love to help and serve. And they love enough to be really professional about the whole operation. The food is great. The rooms are great. The amenities are great. All in all: this is real value. The Ayahuasca experience is much more than merely drinking a plant medicine. It starts from the moment you are welcomed to the beautiful house high in the hills of San Ramon. This is something important to any shamanistic experience: the location. With a forever view of the surrounding hills, ocean and skies, this location is indeed liminal. The house is one with the sky and abounds with character and warmth. And all of that is buttressed by the warmth and care of Matt and Janae themselves. I’m still glowing and reverberating with little lessons from Aya weeks after the experience. If I didn’t get the genuine performance from a card-carrying native shaman in Peru, then I don’t care. I got what I needed. Thanks Matt and Janae, it was perfect.

Serene setting, beautiful experience

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This was my first aya experience and I went into it with great expectations. Matt and Jeanae, who are both wonderful people, have created the perfect environment and did not disappoint. All attendees felt safe and comfortable which allows for a more profound experience with the medicine. The food, property, guests, and Shaman (and Jeanae!!!) were all A+. I couldn't recommend this place more and I will most certainly be going back.

Profound Experience

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It's very difficult to describe what an amazing experience this was. Matt and Jeanae make you feel right at home upon arrival to their beautiful property. The rooms are amazing and very comfortable, and the view from the back porch every morning is breathtaking. Overall just a very positive energy surrounds this place and I instantly fell in love with it.. The ceremonies are unbelievably astonishing. Matt guides you through this intense experience with absolutely amazing Icaros, Gong, Drum, and Guitar. He becomes one with this medicine during ceremony, and it left me speechless. You can tell he puts 100% of his energy and passion into this, and I hold the upmost respect for him. Jeanae also plays the most beautiful sounding flute I've ever heard, and her presence during the ceremony is very soothing. Matt and Jeanae are very genuine and sincere people and I'm very grateful for what they have done for me. I cannot wait to go back!...Oh and Chopper is the coolest cat you will ever meet!
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Is Ayahuasca a Cure?

Can Ayahuasca Cure?

ayahuasca cureWe get a lot of people visiting our retreat center looking for healing and relief from some sort of ailment – depression, anxiety, PTSD, addiction and other physical/mental diseases, and while we have seen a lot of success, we have also seen people return home without having made much, if any, progress. Ayahuasca does have incredible potential for healing but it is NOT a cure – for anything! We want to see people come here and grow from the experience, integrate it into their lives and be healthier and happier as a result, so I am writing this article with the intention to help inform those interested in ayahuasca as a treatment method so they may be better prepared coming into the experience for healing.

Ayahuasca is NOT a Cure –

First things first, Ayahuasca is not a cure for anything. Ayahuasca does not cure depression, or PTSD, or anxiety, or addiction, or anything. It is not a miracle drug. Of course the first step is to recognize whatever it is that is causing negative effects in your life and to want healing and relief from those things, but you have to be willing to put in the work to get it and oftentimes, that means A LOT of work. It does not mean that you are going to go to another country for a week or so, drink ayahuasca a handful of times, go back to your life exactly the way it was and be cured of whatever your ailment was. It is not quite that simple, as life rarely is. It is so important to realize that ayahuasca, on its own, does not fix anything.  What ayahuasca can do, is allow for a shift in your perception, allow you a different way of looking at the things that contributed to your depression, anxiety, PTSD, addiction or whatever it is, and find a different way of responding to your current situation and to life in general.

Make Changes –

Perceptions create our reality. Since ayahuasca can alter our perceptions, it can thus completely change the reality of our lives. This, in my opinion, has the biggest impact on the ability to heal through ayahuasca. But in order to experience lasting results, each individual needs to find a way to use and integrate those new perceptions to make changes in their lives as well as implementing new ways to maintain and advance positive mental health. For some, the ayahuasca experience is so impactful and full of such huge revelations that the changes to life that follow come easily and naturally, but I would say that this is not typically the case, especially when facing extreme forms of depression, anxiety, PTSD and addiction. For me, ayahausca did not cure me of my depression or addiction, it opened a door that let me glimpse the world through the eyes of a future self that was not inhibited by depression or addiction to see that life could be beautiful. I had to make drastic changes to get to where ayahuasca showed me I could be and it certainly wasn’t easy.

The point is, ayahuasca offers you an opportunity – not a cure. It is up to each individual what they do with that opportunity. Too often we see people at the end of a retreat feeling  great and optimistic – feeling ‘cured’ – but when we check in a few weeks later, the symptoms have started creeping back in, and they’re finding it harder to connect to the things they learned in their experience because they got caught up with life. This is why it is so incredibly important to make immediate changes when you get home – ayahuasca can not do the work for you. She can give you a lot of tools, but its up to each individual to take responsibility for their own life and happiness once they arrive home. My suggestion would be to implement some kind of routine that keeps you grounded and will advance your health both physically and mentally such as exercising (known to do incredible things from depression) yoga, meditation, reading (Elkhart Tole – The Power of Now did wonderful things for me). Check our our recent blog about 15 easy healthy habits to adopt in 2016 for ideas. We are happy to help give suggestions. Talk to whoever is running your retreat if you need help.

Take Responsibility –

Ultimately, only you are responsible for your own health and happiness and making the necessary changes to your life after an ayahuasca retreat. The emphasis of this article is to help people realize that taking a week from their lives and drinking ayahuasca will not, of its own, cure them of anything. If you are considering a retreat for healing, please be aware and prepare yourself for long and difficult journey that lies after ayahuasca. The many articles you read, you’ll see that personal stories of success came with some serious life changes. While ayahuasca is an incredible, amazing, powerful, healing medicine that can change lives, it is not a cure.