This story gives a sense of what “Pachamama” means (the feminine universe) and also gives a sense of the Andean conception of gender roles.
The Amazon jungle is wild and biodiverse because the humans who have lived in it value the quality and spirit of wildness. They want to keep this wild spirit intact in the gardens.
Amazonian indigenous societies in my experience — and certainly all Andean indigenous societies — are fundamentally based upon reciprocity. Not profit. Profit and reciprocity are fundamentally different values.
This is a path of uniting stories. An invitation into deeper relation with the many things that fuel, heal, and energize us; that which is alive all around us, co-creates with us. This a path of dissolving separation. A path of connectivity.
An interview with Martin von Hildebrand, founder at head of Gaia Amazonas describes his work with indigenous groups in Colombia, and their quest towards the reclamation of over 260,000 square kilometers (100,000 square miles) of Amazon rainforest.
The region of traditional Ayahuasca use is the Upper Amazon, that is, the western part of the Amazon Basin, and the western part of the Guiana Shield. (The Guiana Shield, which encompasses much of Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Surinam, and French Guiana, is not technically part of the Amazon Basin, as its rivers do not drain to the Amazon River, but ecologically and culturally it is considered as part of the Amazon rainforest, and we will hereinafter use the terminology that includes the Guiana Shield as part of the “Amazon.”) “Ground zero” of Ayahuasca usage is the northwestern region of the Amazon Basin where Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, and Brazil come together (see red-outlined area on map). Close to 100% of indigenous ethnic groups here traditionally use Ayahuasca (and this also contains the centers of mestizo traditional usage, Iquitos and Pucallpa in Peru). Beyond that (see fuschia-outlined area on map) Ayahuasca is used by a large majority of the indigenous peoples. Ayahuasca is also used by several indigenous groups outside of this area of traditional usage: the …