MUNDO SHIPIBO-CONIBO   NóN ASHE

AYAHUASCA SONGS OF HEALING

The lyrics of these songs represent a vocalization of power. They work intrinsically, making powerful connections. They paint designs that can heal, bring back harmony, just like the labyrinthine patterns found in Shipibo artwork. Their origin can be traced back to the visions of chamans: they are a representation of what shamans see and learns from the entities they perceive in their visions. These entities are multiple, alike and unalike, and cannot be reduced to a single _expression. This is why metaphor is the best way of describing them. These songs come from the supernatural world, which is not separate from nature. English or Spanish words are inadequate to express them. Their true meaning is only revealed under the influence of plant preparations such as ayahuasca.

The "drunkenness" this causes becomes a pathway to knowledge, and represents the way to understand the meaning of the songs. The supernatural beings behind the songs emit melodies in much the same way as we breathe. Shamans travel between both worlds, crossing back and forth, and achieve powers similar to those of the beings whose songs they sing. And once they see the world clearly, they endeavour to act. But the world is rife with danger: arrows, illness… and power can be a double-edged sword. Curing shamans first have to overcome the possibly lethal urges of their darker side. But songs can save lives. If you are drowning in your visions, grab on to the shaman's melody, and use it as a life-line. These songs are made of knowledge.

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