Alexis Tapia with Noni, Hawaii

The One Who Cares for The Medicine
Cosmic Sister
by Alexis Tapia

Excerpt from article:

“My intention in going to Peru was to learn about ayahuasca in its homeland, where this brew is part of the Amazonian lifestyle. Various tribes use ayahuasca, and each tribe uses it a little differently. The owner of Aya Madre is Shipibo, a people well-known for their elaborate, hand-sewn textiles with designs received directly from ayahuasca visions. In contrast to being a schedule I substance in the United States, ayahuasca is considered a cultural treasure by the Peruvian government, so it’s legal there. People work with ayahuasca openly in the Amazon basin and is integral to their way of life.

I also wanted to work with a female healer, learn more about my body, and understand my moon cycles better without feeling ashamed. Estela wanted to start her own medicinal garden at the retreat center, and I believed helping her with this vision was part of my purpose. I could teach the curandera how to grow her own plants so she wouldn’t have to buy them anymore – and maybe grow yucca, potatoes, and plantains, too. It was time to put my three years of learning and experience on the kava farm into action!”


“Ayahuasca taught me that the healing process is never quite over. It’s a daily occurrence, and each day offers a new opportunity to improve in some way or another. Why remain in the same thought loops and behavioral patterns when you could be reborn each day? Sky’s the limit, and the sky has no limit. Dream big.

I’m also learning that the real work begins after ceremony. The healing I’ve received from ayahuasca ceremonies depends on how much I commit to doing the work of integrating the visions, lessons, and experiences from ceremonies into my everyday life. This post-ceremony work has allowed me to better myself physically, mentally, emotionally and socially.
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The plants have a way of helping me connect with my intuition. They show me what the vibration of my highest good feels like. The best example I have for feeling the ‘vibration of my highest good’ are the sayings ‘follow your gut’ and ‘follow your heart.’ I can feel when a decision and/or a situation is right for me based on how I feel physically. I’m more selective about how I spend my time. Focusing on my interests and passions—rather than what worries me—has made a difference in who I surround myself with and what I do with my time.”

— Alexis Tapia (@hierba_alexis)

Image: Plantswoman and Kava grower Alexis Tapia dieted on Piñon while at Aya Madre (@AyaMadre), an Indigenous woman-owned ayahuasca retreat in the Peruvian Amazon, under the care of Shipibo Onanya (‘Ancestral Healer’) Estela Pangosa Sinacay. Alexis is an Honorary Plant Spirit Grant recipient and a recipient of Cosmic Sister's Women of the Psychedelic Renaissance grant for writing. This excerpt is from her story, “The One Who Cares for The Medicine.”

March 2020