This article is a submission for the Ayahuasca Awareness Program, an initiative by the Spirit Vine Center in Brazil. The program aims to help increase awareness of the potential of ayahuasca by sponsoring free ayahuasca retreats every month for people who feel the call for spiritual development with ayahuasca and other methods.

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The Gift of Being “The Black Sheep” 

Did you grow up feeling misunderstood by your family, peer groups, or community? Or maybe you felt like the path you chose to take in life was outside of what was considered “normal” — this could be due to using your voice in ways others were afraid to or choosing not to settle for the mundane and surface-level expression of life. Maybe you have had a sense of being different follow you around for most of your life, a feeling that could not simply be ignored, instead deeply explored. This path is often attributed to the archetype of “The Black Sheep” and maybe you are just now discovering that everything you have experienced is for a reason. 

Being “The Black Sheep” is not an easy role to take on, it often comes with immense growing pains and many life-defining lessons. “The Black Sheep” of the family is usually the member who absorbs the family’s collective feelings of pain, tension, and anxiety. The Black Sheep will mentally, spiritually and most likely physically show manifestations of holding onto the energy that was so heavily projected onto them in their younger years. If the question “why me?” has frequently come up for you in this lifetime, you may be happy to hear your pain has a purpose, your shadow comes with light and your perception to see, feel and act outside of the “norm” is truly a gift. To have experienced “The Black Sheep” archetype grants you the capacity to evolve into “The Healer”, if you so choose. 

Humans are social organisms, we have always gathered in groups to stay safe from predators and gain strategic advantages. Now and then, one in the group is a bit different from the others. They tend to be an outcast, often chronically ill – their solitude and suffering grant them gifts, wisdom, and insight that those who are too busy with everyday tasks seem to lack. These gifts, if nurtured and subsequently engaged by the group, play the vital societal role of perspective and guidance to the others in the group – from someone who has the unique dualistic perspective of being in two worlds simultaneously, both inside the group and outside of it. Both sick and healthy. Both awake and asleep. More accurately somewhere in between. That is the common thread that stitches “The Healer” role into every culture on earth, since prehistory. The rest is cultural individuation, the development of traditions and practices. My understanding of “The Healer” archetype is that the role itself is not a specific doctrine or school of thought, it is more of a societal phenomenon and collection of wisdom. That said, pretty much every culture has some form of Healer origins, so if you’re looking for a specific culture to tune into for inspiration or guidance, take your pick, Earth has loads to choose from. 

I encourage you to recognize that although your path may have felt like you were going through hell at times, it was only to provide you with the wisdom to guide others through the flames and show them how to rise from their own ashes. Give yourself permission to allocate a good chunk of time to get to know yourself, learn your gifts, embody your medicine and share it with those who seek it. We all have a sacred medicine to share with the world & so many people are seeking yours.

Written by Samantha Bond for the Ayahuasca Awareness Program
Samantha — Holistic Health Enthusiast, Mind Architect and Mystic. Through experiencing the extreme dualities of life, Samantha has developed a newfound interest in liberated living & spirituality. She enjoys pursuing self-development and learning how experiences shape people, in order to regulate the nervous system and return back to authentic, natural living.

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Spirit Vine COVID-19 Update

Last Updated: 9th August 2022

We have established guidelines to ensure that we provide the maximum amount of safety to all participants who attend the retreats.

We are following the guidelines provided by the Brazilian government which you can find below and have added some necessary precautions suitable for the retreats.

In the Itacare area, where we are located, there are very low number of COVID cases.

We will update this section when new information is available.
Content listed here is subject to change.

If you have any questions, please contact us.

Brazilian Government Recommendations for COVID-19

The current guidelines from the Brazilian government state that anyone who wants to enter Brazil must present a Covid vaccine certificate. You do not need to take any other vaccines to enter Brazil. These guidelines may change in the future.

Travelers must also fill out an affidavit 24 hours before departure acknowledging the health measures that must be complied with during the period that they will remain in the country. You can find the affidavit here.

Prior to leaving Brazil, depending on the requirements of your destination country, you may be required to present an RT-PCR or Antigen test. If you need a PCR test we recommend you to budget the required time of 6 hours to take the test and get the results at Sao Paulo Guarulhos airport. Antigen test can be taken in the town of Itacare near our center before you go to the airport or at the airport in Sao Paulo.

Please note that Itacare and Ilheus do not have RT-PCR testing centers.

Spirit Vine Guidelines for COVID-19

We require that vaccination must be done at least 2 months prior to drinking ayahuasca. This is for the safety of participants to make sure the vaccine doesn’t have any reaction with the ingestion of ayahuasca. 

We also require all visitors to provide a valid Covid-19 test prior to entering the Center. The Antigen test is only valid for 24 hours and PCR test is only valid for 72 hours. A valid negative test result must be sent by email prior to entering the Center.