by Iysha Alexandra Barrett
Transformation, the key to spiritual development, and the most daunting task we sign up for. There is one thing I know for sure, I’m afraid of transforming but I also embrace it with bravery (or try my best to do so). For everyday I know I will become a better version of myself if I allow, if I accept the challenges and face my fears.
For many it may seem irrelevant for a 25 year old to be speaking about ‘transformation’ but it’s something we all need to explore to live the fullest life possible. Age has no relevance in spirituality, nor does how long you’ve been on your path for. Seemingly a common misconception is having ‘done the work’ therefore being ‘better’ than another, this is simply not the case; we are all carrying wounds, ones which we are blind to, ones requiring a great deal of healing.
For me travel has become one of the most powerful tools in transformation and evolution. Peru in particular has given me powerful opportunities for transformation. Or it has accelerated elements of my transformation at least.
Rewind to May, my first visit to this amazing place, taking part in Peru Odyssey: learning about myself; ancient traditions and personal growth at a rapid speed. A journey which allowed me to blossom: and in turn start beginning to live from my heart. Something in May lifted within me whilst in Peru, I felt lighter, brighter and all round wonderful. I was coming back to me, to more of my authentic self, this journey then led me to deepen that through further spiritual practice and enquiry. When asked to return I was unsure, since my last visit everything in my life had changed, the thought of going through another substantial amount of change was terrifying. But an opportunity I could not refuse.
A journey which felt so familiar yet, terrifying. I knew transformation was looming, part of me welcoming it with open arms, another part of me fighting it. Ego, battling what is actually good for me. Transformation is a beautiful journey but also poses challenges, brought on by the mind, not the heart. Consumed by feelings of ‘I’m ok, I don’t need to change’ but knowing change was imminent.
“I know not who I am, but simply that I am forever becoming exactly what I am meant to be.” Becca Lee
As the group began to unite, the build up of energy geared towards learning, transformation and unity could be felt. Whether it was Peru, the sacred sites or mother ayahuasca which had called people to the tour, it didn’t matter, the cosmic chef had done his work. Collectively big changes would occur.
Introverts, extroverts, thinkers, doers, dreamers, the group had it all. As we continued our adventure through Peru, the group formed bonds in strength & solidarity. Each day brings new challenges & lessons for each person, some silent and some openly shared. For many challenges arise simply from being in a group environment. Many of us don’t spend almost every waking hour with a group of people, let alone 19! We all became friends and teachers for one another; the beautiful gift we can give and receive is to learn from others, learn what triggers us and feel into why.
Our guide Amaru, bursts with passion, his teachings…mind-blowing (sometimes quite literally!) You have no option but to raise your consciousness, Amaru shakes up the meaning of ‘tour guide’; his knowledge far stretches that of any other guide. He is a gift from the cosmos.
“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” Neale Donald Walsch
A cliché quote, somewhat overused but no one can deny its truth. Comfort zones were stretched and challenged, whether that be taking part in sacred plant medicine ceremonies, walking up mountains at 13,000ft or having conversations which allowed questioning of beliefs and expansion of consciousness. This is a joy of travel, especially travel with others, you feel held whilst you step out your comfort zone.
The group took part in sacred plant medicine ceremonies, for most people these are profound, life-changing and pretty far from ‘comfort’. The first ceremony was Wachuma (San Pedro), the group split into 2 smaller groups and off everyone went on a cosmic journey of healing. Once the group was reunited, tales of cosmic bliss, distress and everything in-between followed.
Ayahuasca followed a week later, with a wide range of stories, videos and information available on ayahuasca it is easy to see how many people are pretty anxious about these ceremonies. The key for some of the group was to remove all expectations, for others to remove questioning and for all to surrender and trust the medicine. Experiences were as diverse as Peru’s potato varieties (over 3000) with rainbow serpents, spaceships and cats on Mount Everest to name a few.
Throughout the 23 day tour, transformation was evident for each and every individual. Some leaving with messages of further healing, others with happiness they’d lost. It’s safe to say no one left empty handed.
Spiritual journeys can be lonely at times; you are on your own, even when surrounded by people also on their own journeys because all our paths are different. Peru Odyssey allows that to transform, evolve and explore whilst knowing you are not alone.
Thank you Peru, again you have brought me to a place of enquiry, a place which has raised more wounds for healing & a place to connect with more beautiful souls.
If you’re drawn to exploring the Peru Odyssey experience please follow this link: Peru Odyssey