Zoe Helene on location in the Amazon. Photo by Tracey Eller

Zoe Helene on Women and Ayahuasca
People Making Change | Podcast
with Susun Weed

Every Tuesday night (from 9pm-9:30pm Eastern time) herbal expert host Susun Weed (@susunweed) answers listener's health questions, then interviews people making change. December 8th, 2015, she interviewed Zoe Helene (@zoehelene) about Cosmic Sister (@cosmicsister). The half hour interview is at the end of the podcast.

Susun Weed is an Author, Herbalist, Wise woman, green witch and women's health expert who began studying herbal medicine in 1965. She has authored multiple books including Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year (now in its 29th printing), Healing Wise, New Menopausal Years the Wise Woman Way, Breast Cancer? Breast Health! The Wise Woman Way, and Down There: Sexual and Reproductive Health the Wise Woman Way. Her worldwide teaching schedule encompasses herbal medicine, ethnobotany, pharmacognosy, psychology of healing, ecoherbalism, nutrition, and women's health issues and her venues include medical schools, hospital wellness centers, breast cancer centers, midwifery schools, naturopathic colleges, and shamanic training centers, as well as many conferences. Susun appears on many television and radio shows, including National Public Radio and NBC News.

“I’ve always been an animal spirit person. I was born adoring animals and we always had a menagerie of companion animals around. When I was growing up I spent a LOT of time in the woods in North Carolina and then the rainforests of New Zealand, and most of that was about looking for wild animal friends. And in the ocean and estuaries and the lakes and creeks and too—so much life! I had a great deal of love and curiousity for nature but for me it was all about the animals, and while I understood that they needed the plants and trees and such to survive—I saw them more as food or setting or habitat, rather than sensing each individual plant as a spirit. One night in ceremony in a jungle ceremony I asked Ayahuasca, “Show yourself to me in your plant form.” And she did. Then she gifted me with a plant medicine paradigm shift. It was as if a veil lifted, as if my senses were all there in working order but they’d just never been switched on. Quintessential life-changing, consciousness-enhancing medicine.” - Zoe Helene

About Zoe Helene

Zoe Helene, MFA, a multidisciplinary artist, cultural activist and psychedelic feminist, is connecting visionaries who share her commitment to women’s rights, animal rights, and the right to journey with sacred plants. Her work has been featured in Forbes, Boston Magazine, Utne Reader, Outside Magazine, Boston Globe, Newsday, Chicago Tribune, MIT Technology Review, and Fast Company. Zoe’s articles promoting trailblazers on the ethical evolution path—include thought leaders in sustainable business, ethical style, mind/body/spirit wellness, and frontline wilderness and wildlife stewardship—have been published in LA Yoga, Organic Spa Magazine, Coco Eco, Eco Salon, Conscious Living TV, Endangered Species Coalition, Huffington Post, Earth Tribe, Nailed Magazine, Organic Authority, Reality Sandwich and Ladybud.

Zoe travels to remote regions of the globe with her husband and partner, ethnobotanist and Medicine Hunter Chris Kilham, to promote medicinal plants, environmental protection and cultural preservation. She was introduced to ayahuasca, a psychedelic Amazonian sacred plant medicine, on the night of their first anniversary (2007). Today, “la medicina” plays a lead role in her life’s work.

Zoe founded Cosmic Sister®, a collective for women who understand that true balance of power between genders will bring peace, progress and sustainability, in 2007. In 2013, she launched the Cosmic Sister Plant Spirit Grant, a merit-based program that supports outstanding women to experience the healing and consciousness-expanding journey of ayahuasca ceremony in the Peruvian Amazon. The program was recently featured in Boston Magazine and Utne Reader.
The Cosmic Sister Women of the Psychedelic Renaissance and Cosmic Sisters of Cannabis grants are important new companion projects of the Cosmic Sister Plant Spirit Grant. These programs focus on helping women educate the public honestly about the risks and benefits of psychedelics and the responsible use of sacred plants in transformational, consciousness-expanding mind/body/spirit work with sacred plants such as ayahuasca, cannabis, peyote, and psilocybin mushrooms. Zoe’s mission is to bring more powerful stories about women’s frontline work in this arena to the forefront of public conversation, helping to promote a healthy gender balance in mind/body/spirit wellness work. Through a fiscal sponsorship with the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), donations for these projects are fully tax deductible. Please visit www.cosmicsister.com/support for more information.

Cosmic Sister (@cosmicsister)
Zoe Helene (@cosmicsister)

December 2015