In the series 'Azarius experiences', one of the indomitable Azarius employees shares his or her experience with a psychoactive substance or product related to psychonaut or stoner culture. In today's episode: kambo part II: kambo strikes back.
My first experience with kambo left me with mixed feelings. After the ceremony I experienced some truly positive effects. However, I found more than a little uncomfortable being sick in an unfamiliar environment. Also, I had my reservations about the 'shaman'. He sang beautifully, but he also admitted he only attended about twenty kambo ceremonies before he decided to host the sessions himself.
In short, he had no real training and just copied another 'shaman,' who himself probably had no training either. I wondered about the value of such a ceremony, which cost me fifty euros.
My boyfriend and I had little interest in the ritual, but we wanted to apply kambo again for its curative effects. So, we decided to simply order kambo online. It arrived within a week. Fifty euros got us enough for ten sessions: that clearly helped to reduce the costs!
To adventure, and beyond
Two days later we were ready for adventure. It proved more difficult than expected, because I did not dare to burn holes in my skin myself. My boyfriend went first.
Slightly horrified, I watched him burning holes in his arm without any hesitation. Now it was my turn. I tried several times and every time I dropped out quickly. I was scared!
This went on for a while. Eventually my boyfriend became irritated: I shouldn’t complain that much. He started to clear up the kambo demonstratively. I understood I was whining and after a few deep breaths, I planted the burning stick in my arm, only to withdraw it immediately. It hurt! The result was a tiny hole.
I was deeply disheartened, but I really wanted to do this. Therefore, I gritted my teeth and tried it a few times more. The result: ten small burning holes. This should be sufficient.
Now my friend wanted to apply the kambo, though the substance was solid. How did the 'shaman' do that again? Wasn't his kambo liquid? Was this substance we bought actually kambo at all? Perhaps the kambo ran out of date and had hardened?
We had no idea. Now I was the one who got annoyed: maybe I had tormented myself for nothing! My boyfriend stayed calm and checked it on internet. The answer was simple: you had to add a little water. And indeed the kambo changed into a gelatinous substance, exactly like the one I'd seen before.
We applied the mixture to the holes and waited anxiously. My boyfriend became nauseous, as expected, but he didn’t vomit. However, I felt nothing. After waiting for half an hour, I was completely fed up with it. Ten burning holes and a lot of fuss for nothing!
My boyfriend knew exactly what was wrong: I had held back too much and therefore my burn holes were too small. He showed me his arm: this is how they ought to be. Horrified I watched the burns on his shoulder, which were indeed much bigger than mine. I decided I would be more strong next time, but for now I was completely done with it.
Two weeks later we repeated the experiment. I sat on the couch next to my boyfriend and this time I let him do the burning. He clearly took no risks and after a brief torture I saw six large burning marks on my arm. It hurt, but I was glad it had happened. Now nothing could go wrong.
My boyfriend applied the kambo and the familiar feeling of warmth, heat, sweating and nausea came over me. After this, I vomited. Fifteen minutes later I lay exhausted but satisfied on my bed. As scary as it was the first time and as difficult as it was the second time, the third time was indeed the charm. This was worth repeating!
When you read my story, you might be wondering why on earth I'm doing this. The answer may surprise you: I have a chronic disease to which mainstream medicine has no answer. As a lot of people do in my situation, I started searching for alternatives and found out about kambo. I believe kambo has a lot of healing properties.
My experiences with kambo will not end here. I plan to do kambo in a series of fifteen days or more, one session a day. This sounds extreme, but this type of treatment is recommended by shamans of the Amazon for disorders like mine. After all, you also take antibiotics every day over the course of a couple of weeks. If I benefit from it, I'll let you guys know. The same holds true for the moment I finally have the guts to do the burning myself ;).
Read more about kambo in the Azarius encyclopaedia.
Written by: Sofie