This is the last in a series of blogs I wrote about a peyote ceremony. To read from the beginning, click on this link to return to Part I.
My peyote experience occurred last November and yet, I’m still processing much of the information I received. Every time I sit down to meditate on the rising sun or even if the sun has been up for an hour or so, the portal appears after several seconds of concentrating on it. I’m very conscious of the energy at my solar plexus chakra being blocked, but must admit that I began actively working to unblock it only recently. I’ve been meditating and working to release the old stuck energy that I understand now is layers of emotional pain going back generations.
My intention for writing about my peyote experience was not to inspire others to try it or any other mind-altering substances. I personally would not use peyote carelessly and, based on a discussion with the shaman’s assistant, Mario, and further research, I believe that most people do not experience much of anything when it is used outside of the context of a spiritual ceremony with a proper guide.
I struggled with sharing what I learned while under the influence of peyote. I know much of what I related is probably pretty hard for many to believe and I don’t blame you. But I felt compelled to relate some of what I learned of the existence of realities alternative to those that churches, governments and mega-corporations spoon-feed so many of us from cradle to grave. I personally feel as though I’ve spent the last decade working to undo the brainwashing I received under the influence of schools, governments and media for the first several decades of my life. I’m encouraged to learn that there are so many interesting and exciting things about the way the world and our Universe work.
I found it interesting to discover that many anthropologists studying the Huichol and other indigenous people who use peyote in spiritual ceremonies dismiss the resulting visions as culturally induced hallucinations – the result purely of combining psychoactive compounds with religious indoctrination occurring over a person’s lifetime. Anthropologists maintain that people see the Blue Deer because they’ve grown up hearing how it’s the vision that appears as the messenger. I find it interesting then that my first vision was not of some white-bearded, flowing-haired old man sitting on a throne in the clouds. Or Santa Claus! Because my dad took me to the ice rink to play ringette on Sundays instead of dragging me to church. But I didn’t see Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or John Travolta. My first vision was of the head of a blue deer despite not knowing anything about the connection between the Blue Deer and peyote, nor the Huichol interpretation of it. Similarly, how is it that I saw a portal through the sun and the matrix, both visions of which I’ve since learned are spoken of by the Huichol? I’d wager a guess that the same anthropologists who dismissed peyote visions as nothing more than culturally-dictated hallucinations might find it difficult to explain how peyote induced these visions in a whitebread Canadian woman with no prior knowledge. So much of what I learned over the course of that three day period were things I’d never heard of or even imagined. Can what I saw and heard be explained or rationalized scientifically? Perhaps the greater question is why do we so often feel the need to try to explain or disprove the mystical source of such a powerful and illuminating experience?
I’ve come to believe that some things in life cannot be explained. I prefer to leave the mystery of peyote’s power intact and wonder, for all that it taught me about myself and the Universe, if peyote might not be the fabled “Tree of Knowledge.”