A shaman is a person who interacts with the spiritual realm through altered states of consciousness.
Matthew has dedicated himself to mastering his craft. He has completed many master plant dietas and has learned valuable lessons in his years of facilitating ceremonies that have made him skilled in navigating energy, communicating with spirits, and creating a safe container for all participants. He has the support of many spiritual allies and protectors.
The ayahuasca shaman is responsible for guiding the experience. The ceremonial music is one of the most influential elements of the ayahuasca experience.
At New Life Ayahuasca Costa Rica, this includes Icaros (traditional medicine songs), guitar, drums, gong, singing bowls, bells, kalimba, and flute. Matthew has been passed down generational Icacros from his teachers, and he has developed his own unique style of chanting.
Matthew, a highly sensitive and intuitive empath, adapts the songs of the ceremony to meet the energy of the room. The songs of the spirit come to him, and his powerful voice carries them through the space. This is why it is so important to us to keep our groups intimate so that the energetic space is maintained with respect to each individual's experience.
What is a Shaman?
Matthew has fully immersed himself in the world of ancient sacred traditions and practices for over a decade. From studying Ayahuasca in Iquitos, Peru to taking the sacrament Iboga in Gabon, Africa; Matthew's commitment to plant medicine is constantly growing and evolving.
They often say that ayahuasca starts working long before you ever drink the brew and for Matthew, that was certainly the case. He first heard about ayahuasca through an episode of National Geographic. As soon as he saw it, it was as if something deep, inherent, and dormant in him had been ignited! “This is what I have to do!" he thought to himself.
He didn't know how but he knew he was being guided. Matthew struggled with addiction for most of his adult life and he knew that before he could do anything else, he had to end his opiate dependency.
In 2011, Matthew was offered the opportunity to take ibogaine with HBO’s VICE TV in Mexico. Then, in 2013, he arrived in Costa Rica to work more intimately with plant medicines at a retreat center. It was at this time that he finally had his first experience with ayahuasca. His connection to the medicine and the spirit of ayahuasca was so profound, it felt like he finally arrived home.
In the years since Matthew has participated in over a thousand ceremonies and has evolved into a powerful and compassionate shaman. He continues to expand and deepen his relationship with ayahuasca by completing many master plant dietas with his teacher Don Ron Wheelock in Iquitos, Peru.
Our ayahuasca Costa Rica ceremonies are done with respect to the Peruvian traditions, are offered in darkness, and are guided through song. Participants sit in silence while Matthew and Jeanae expertly prepare the sacred ceremonial space with the use of mapacho and intention to cleanse the space and create a barrier or protection.
Each participant is offered a dose of ayahuasca. We sit together in silence for 30 minutes and once the medicine starts to take effect, Matthew will begin to sing. An hour into the ceremony we offer the opportunity to drink more medicine to ensure you have a full ayahuasca experience.
The ceremony lasts about 4 hours. Matthew and Jeanae will close the ceremony with mapacho, blowing smoke on each individual to close the chakras and seal the night.
After the ceremony, we have a cleansing fire under the stars and make sure everyone gets safely to their rooms.