Toè Dream Journey

Toè Dream Journey ritual at night. Photo: I. Grau

On top of the Ayahuasca weekly sessions (FIVE per week for Ayahuasca retreats, and THREE per week for pre-diet and shamanic apprenticeship retreats), we shall have one night dedicated to a Dream Journey with the Plant Teacher Toè (Brugmansia suaveolens).

The Toè Dream Journey is a ceremony that has been practised by the Shipibo people for divination, since immemorial time.

The settings are the same as for the Ayahuasca rituals – at night, in darkness, around 8 PM – with the shamans singing their protective and healing icaros on to the participants who will be smoking the plant (dried Toè leaves mixed with black jungle tobacco) and/or drink the Toè juice.

The plant teacher Toè may induce a profound intoxication. The beverage taken during the ritual is made by the freshly scraped Toè roots and stem (”raices y corazon”) left in infusion in cold water for a very short time, only a few minutes in fact (usually, together with a Mapacho cigar). The shamans will then filter and sing their icaros over the preparation (which will be then ready to be served), to grant participants a safe journey.

This ritual takes place indoors, around 8 pm, whilst the shamans sings their icaros, in total darkness, after candle light has been extinguished. The actual ritual lasts about half an hour, after which time you shall return to your bungalow and rest in bed, waiting for the Toè to favour deep sleep, dreaming and profound visions.

As with Ayahuasca, the Toè ritual is done on a purely voluntary basis of participation. The Toè is a very powerful plant teacher and is recommended for one to fast on the night of the ceremony. Fasting for the Toè Dream Journey – in the same fashion that is done for Ayahuasca rituals – enhances visionary effects, may deepen dramatically one’s dreaming experience, and is a much due sign of respect for this truly wondrous, magical plant.

ALL participants to the Ayahuasca retreat, to the pre-diet (plant diet testers), to the diet with palos maestros (master trees) and to the shamanic plant diet apprenticeship may take part to Toè rituals, when the Toè plant is smoked. To safely drink the fresh Toè juice, however, one must be first and foremost evaluated by the shaman and once approved, may drink the juice under supervision.

A very strict and long shamanic plant diet, is traditionally required when taking the Toè plant.