Way back in 2012, before I started this blog and all of its wonderful adventures, I took a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Peru. I was a minor, and I went with my inspiring high school teachers Diane Ballantyne and Jim Mason. They are two people I continually look to for inspiration in a changing world thanks to their liberal views and forward thinking necessary for surviving today’s modern model. I recently spent an afternoon looking through all my photos from Peru, and that afternoon has inspired me to write a series of posts about my trip, and what still stands out about that colourful, South American country nearly 4 years later.
These photos were from a Shaman ceremony just outside of Cuzco, in the hills and cliffs that surround the mountain city. We were blessed with pigments, and given sacred coca leaves to chew. Coca leaves were once the basis of modern day Coca cola, but tastes nothing like the soda. Today it is drank as a strong green tea, useful for increasing your red blood cell count and increasing the amount of oxygen your blood can intake. Thus, it is extremely helpful for warding off altitude sickness.
Musicians and dancers played sacred music and the shaman called to the mountain spirits. We were invited to call forth our own mountains, so we summoned the Rockies to join our ceremony.
The ceremony was about peace and gratitude towards the planet. Shamanism is seen as very primitive in today’s world, but in its most basic sense remains very vital to our Earth’s continued survival: giving thanks for the planet that we have, being humble not to take more than we truly need, and to take some time out of our day to acknowledge another life force that has helped us in more ways than we can ever return.