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  • Writer's picturemadredivina

You are NOT ready for medicine ceremony if...

You are NOT ready for ceremony if:


1.       You want the medicine to “fix” you or “fix” a situation. Medicine will not fix you. It will not save you. That is up to you and you alone. The most common reason I see disappointment and symptoms/situations worsening after a ceremony is when you have pinned all your hopes on the medicine to solve your problems or cure your depression, anxiety, illness, or dis-ease. If you go into ceremony and you are grasping, chasing the fix, or are averse to whatever you are currently experiencing, you will likely be disappointed in your ceremony and the after-effects. You may hear yourself saying things like “It didn’t work.”


It is up to you to be discerning, and to check in with yourself, and to see if you are grasping at something, chasing your healing, or want this to fix you. If you find yourself coming to ceremony over and over again and are not seeing results, it is likely because you are not doing the work outside of ceremony. It is up to you to check in with yourself to discern if you are using ceremony to fix your problems or to support and enhance the work you are doing in-between ceremonies.


2.       You have certain expectations for the ceremony itself. This usually means you picture yourself in pure bliss and joy the entire time. This is a false and unreasonable expectation. Often, even when I hear people say, “I have no expectations, I’m ready for whatever the medicine is ready to give me,” they still end up disappointed or upset because they didn’t get what they hoped for. They will often end up saying, “it’s not what I thought it would be,” or, “I didn’t enjoy it.”


You must release all expectations when you come to ceremony. It may be uncomfortable. It may be difficult. You might not enjoy it. You might remember traumas or things from your past may come back into your consciousness. You may have so much resistance and distrust that “you don’t feel anything.”


 It is said over and over again, because it is true, “the medicine will not give us what we want, it will give us what we need.” What you need may not be what you want. If you are not ready to surrender to the medicine to give you what you need, and are attached to what you want, you are not ready for ceremony.


3.       You are ungrounded, extremely anxious or fearful, paranoid, or agitated. The sacred medicines amplify things they want us to see. If you come into ceremony ungrounded and your mind is in a state of chaos, this may be amplified and you may have an unpleasant experience.


4.       You are suicidal, having suicidal ideations, or have active mental illness, such as an exacerbation of mania.


5.       You are deeply triggered by sudden noises, heavy sighs or breathing, crying, vomiting, screaming, or even silence. If this is you, a private ceremony might be a better choice for you.


6.       You are empathic and take on the suffering and heaviness of others. There is a lot of releasing going on in the group ceremony space. If you know you are someone who has a history of taking things on for others or absorbing the energy of the collective, it is important you address this before ceremony. While certain measures are taken to help protect those in ceremony from certain energies, it is ultimately up to you to create your sovereign space and make the agreement with yourself to put your energetic shield up. Ceremony facilitators can give you tools for this.


7.       You are spending time in comparison. One of the biggest pitfalls in ceremony is comparing your experience to others. Twenty people can take the same exact medicine and every single person will have a unique experience. Some may have an uncomfortable or unpleasant journey while others are in joy and bliss. Some may feel little or nothing or feel bored while others are having a profound experience. Every person is different and every ceremony is different. When we work with these medicines long enough, we will have all of them – everything from shadowy and dark and heavy journeys to journeys of ultimate love and bliss. Be prepared for anything and everything, and take care not to compare your experience to another’s, or to a previous experience you may have had.


8.       You have not done proper preparation or integration before ceremony. This includes proper diet preparations, setting intention, having the proper mindset, and getting the tools you need to navigate the shadows and sit with the uncomfortable.


9.       You have no plans for post-ceremony integration. Proper integration requires quiet time, space, and stillness. You may have a lot to unpack from your journey, and this requires devoting time for quiet reflection, journaling, and speaking with someone who can help you integrate your experience. You may need new tools. You may need shadow work. You may need someone who can help you decode your experience. Ceremony is the initiation. It is what you do afterwards that will make the difference.


It is never advisable to go into a ceremony without extensive preparation. Going with a sense of urgency will likely lead to a poor experience or outcome. Take your time, do your proper preparation, and begin thinking about integration and planning for integration before you come to ceremony. Integration should not be an afterthought.

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