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  • Zach Barney

The Plant of Love: Lessons from Marosa Plant Dieta Part 1

I am love. We are love.


This is the simple truth that I had learned to surrender to while dieting the Marosa plant in the birthplace of Mother Ayahuasca in the Amazonian lands of Ani Shinan’s (which means Great Spirit in the Shipibo language) healing center located outside of Pucallpa, Peru.


It’s so easy today in society to get caught up in status, material possessions, and power. What I’ve realized is that the power of love will always overcome the love of power.


Love is everything. It’s the reason we’re all here. Each moment is a blessing no matter what difficulties or challenges we are going through.


The experiences I share with you on this page are one of many medicines that I’m here to offer and serve to the world. This is my way of saying, “I love you.”


I want to dive into some of the most essential lessons that the plant Marosa taught me while at Ani Shinan during my first plant dieta in the jungle.


So if you’re ready for an adventure, let’s take a ride into the depths of my subconscious mind.


What is ayahuasca?


First off, if you are new to the world of ayahuasca here’s a little background info (link) about the powerful plant medicine that I believe has been helping humans access higher states of consciousness for centuries and will continue to serve as a powerful tool to wake up humanity collectively.


Ayahuasca is actually a tea that is prepared by brewing together two plants: Banisteriopsis caapi, commonly known as the ayahuasca vine, and Psychotria viridis, also known as the chacruna leaf.


Chacruna is the DMT containing substance which gives you the hallucinations and visions and the ayahuasca vine surprisingly doesn’t contain much DMT, but activates the DMT in the chacruna plant. It’s important to note that both of these plants are essential to the ayahuasca experience.


This mystical brew has been used for centuries by many shamans and indigenous tribes from the Amazon rainforest for spiritual healing.


Mystical, visionary experiences in the middle of the jungle... Sounds interesting, right?


If you feel called by Mother Ayahuasca to experience her healing powers for yourself, here is an article I wrote on how to prepare for your first ceremony.


Understanding what ayahuasca is and how it works is a very important part of understanding the dieta process.


During the dieta of a plant or tree, weekly ayahuasca ceremonies help you deepen your connection with the plant you’re dieting since ayahuasca serves as a mirror and teaches you about the plant spirit that is within you.


What is a dieta?


A dieta is a period of intense cleansing and healing that can be used to cure all types of diseases and illnesses ranging from cancer to psychological problems, addiction, depression, and anxiety.


Plant diets have been used by the Shipibo for ages and are essentially the path that a Shaman takes to become a healer or “curandero” – a person who heals through the power of ayahuasca ceremonially.


Whether you seek to be connected to light energy, heal physical ailments including mental health issues and addictions, connect to your higher self or begin your journey to discovering (and some would say “re-covering”) the healer within you, a plant diet is the natural progression for spiritual warriors who seek to evolve themselves.


The diet begins upon ingesting the master plant or tree that you are dieting. After you start, you must follow a strict plant based diet which excludes sex, masturbation, alcohol, and processed sugar in order to truly experience the effects of the dieta.


The reason for this is that your master plant’s energy has the ability to teach you lessons both while awake and through dreams when you are in a clean state. The diet is closed with a final ayahuasca ceremony. Afterwards, you can slowly return to a diet of normal food.


Through my personal experience, I believe the healing power of ayahuasca truly lies in the dieta process. Before arriving at Ani Shinan, I had already experienced 8 ayahuasca ceremonies in different parts of Brazil, but the physical healing and spiritual insights I received through this process were way deeper than all of my past ceremonies combined.


What is Marosa?


Here’s a little background about Marosa that I learned before I started my dieta.


Marosa is a plant of love. It is prescribed to connect oneself to one’s own feelings and emotions and to open the heart.


It always grows close to the river, therefore it carries the energy of the water.

It carries a special connection with the serpents in the river.


The mother of this plant is the anaconda and it’s common to have visions of a giant anaconda and experience her serpentine energy during ayahuasca ceremonies in the dieta process.


I really didn’t know what to expect in my first dieta, but I was open to what Marosa had to teach me over the course of three weeks.


Embodying Love: Insights from my first 3 nights of the dieta


My Marosa dieta started off with the most intense cleansing that I had ever experienced of my physical, mental, and spiritual body.


My primary intentions going into the dieta were the following:


1. To deepen my connection with myself, the Universe, sacred plants, and nature.

2. To explore my relationship with water, being vulnerable, and expressing myself.

3. To allow Marosa to heal the parts of myself and soul that needed to be healed.


On the first three days of the dieta I had to follow a strict diet of only juices during the day.

At night I had a small ceremony with the shamans where they prepared a hefty mixture of tea made from the Marosa plant and tobacco for me. Once the tea was prepared, they sang the icaro of Marosa to me and I had to gulp down a strong, earthy cup of Marosa and tobacco.


Before drinking this strong liquid concoction, I always focused on being grateful for the healing that Marosa would give me. In my mind, I thought to myself, “Thank you Marosa for cleansing my spirit.” Then, I drank it down, despite the awful taste and went to my tambo (jungle house) to spend the night alone.


I had no idea what to expect that first night. As I laid in my tambo, I could feel the energy of the full moon. There was an ayahuasca ceremony taking place in the maloka and I could feel the intense vibrations radiating from the space.


I was hyper-aware and extremely sensitive to the energy of the rainforest. All night I had an intense fever and chills. It was so difficult to get to sleep, but once the ceremony finished I was able to sleep.


My dreams that night were so vivid, yet it’s strange because I couldn’t remember each detail of them. I just remembered seeing my family in different scenarios, and each time they appeared in my dream I could see them displaying different ways that they communicate love to me and to others.


For example, I saw how my grandma and mom have always been caregivers and trying to keep everyone in my family together. One of my brothers is an assistant principal, and in my dream I saw how he cares for the future of his students at his school through disciplining them and their parents to ensure that they’re learning.


I woke up the next morning thankful to have survived the first night dieting Marosa and the visions she showed me in my dreams at night. Though, I still had a fever and woke up with intense diarrhea, I knew that I could get through this challenge and that the plant spirit of Marosa would teach me so much over the next couple of weeks.


The following two nights were similar, except I had somewhat of an idea of what to expect. I knew I was in for a lot of physical purging. One night I even had to vomit while sitting on the toilet, but afterwards I felt the lightest and happiest I’ve ever been in a long time.


Needless to say, I let go of a lot of shit that night in the jungle ;p


First Three Nights of Dieta


In the first three nights of my dieta, Marosa basically was teaching me all about love. Through dreams she taught me how to embody love. I discovered how to love myself fuller, and also how I can be a little be more caring and kind with the people that I love in my life.


Instead of trying to recreate my dreams and learnings from the Amazon rainforest, I’m going to take this moment to be vulnerable and allow you to take a look into my journal writing from the beginning of my dieta.


Here is a recap of my journal notes from the first three nights with Marosa:


Night 1


Marosa is first teaching me how to slow down and love myself fully. I’m learning how to love my soul.


I’m exploring the ways I prefer to receive love. I can love myself by resting, writing, taking a walk, hugging myself, using affirmations, and practicing gratitude.


Love is the most important exchange there is.


I’m going to listen more to see how people want to be loved. I will understand and observe their wants, needs, and desires.


I can absorb the energy of love and appreciation from the Universe by spending time in nature. When I breath in fresh air consciously, I’m renewing the energy within my body.

This is the energy that I spread when I interact with others.


I’m learning that I am gentle, kind, patient, caring, sensitive, warmth, disciplined, and open.


I AM LOVE!!


In every complicated situation, I will ask myself, “What would love do here?”


This is my process of embodying Marosa and becoming the love that’s already within me.


Be love each day. Trust your heart.


Night 2


We each have our own medicine to serve to the world. My mission is to serve my medicine and help others find their medicine to share.


My medicine is my ability to connect people to nature, my story, self love rituals, poetry, dance, yoga, meditation, warm hugs, helping others integrate their lessons from plant medicine, learning languages, smiling, and laughter.


I woke up at 2 am this morning to finish my intense cleansing with Marosa. She renewed my energy, gave me insights, and then said, “now it’s time to let go.”


And I 100% let go of anything that needed to be cleansed when I pooped and projectile vomited for the first time at night. It sounds painful, but the feeling was like the biggest release in my life.


All I can say is, “Thank you Marosa, I love you!”


I feel alive again!


I realized in order to experience immense joy we have to go through the process of feeling immeasurable pain. It’s a part of the non-dual nature of the Universe we live in.


Life needs death. Creation needs destruction. Love needs fear. The light needs darkness. The masculine would be nothing without the feminine. There would be no concept of good without evil.


What we typically think of as completely separate are actually necessary parts of a balanced whole.


All must be respected and appreciated. This experience made me appreciate pain again.

I learned how to love all and serve all better, since there is a blessing behind the pain and fear that we experience.


All is love, and the present moment is all. When you’re living completely in the present moment, you’re submersed in love.


You’re literally IN LOVE. How beautiful a gift that is!


Night 3


This is my third time drinking Marosa. My intention is to allow her to heal whatever needs to be healed and to explore the possibilities of love and life.


I’m grateful for the healing that I’m receiving. I’m grateful for the joy it’s bringing me. It feels great to come back to nature, myself, and my soul.


Remember to smile and laugh through the pain. Breathe. It’s all temporary and has something to teach us.


I haven’t been in the flow of writing until now. I guess nature is my inspiration.


I love Ani Shinan! I’m grateful to be here healing myself. This is a part of my soul’s calling to connect people to healers across the world.


Love isn’t forced. ~Marosa


Love is about complete surrender to ALL.


I want to do a better job of honoring the divinity of the feminine energy each day. Express my love, gratitude, and respect for women around me, nature, and my own inner goddess spirit.

I’m going to be dedicated to my self love rituals.


I had beautiful dreams last night that kept showing examples of how my mom has been connecting the entire family. She’s the glue. She’s so loving and caring, and sacrificed so much for everyone.


I’m eternally grateful for the beautiful women in my life, and will appreciate all women way more after this experience with Marosa.


Right now, the earth is off balance. We’re living in our masculine energy most days, and it’s a good reminder to support and honor the feminine within us all.


How beautiful it is to wake up to the sounds of birds singing and laughing in the rainforest. I could live here forever, but I have a feeling it’s not something I want to normalize too quick.


Long term relationships start with small doses of each other that way you appreciate each other’s presence.


Women are the cosmic instruments of life. We wouldn’t be here without them. Birth is painful yet beautiful. One of the greatest sacrifices and examples of surrendering to the Universe.

Each day remember to give love to yourself, others, family, friends, nature, the Universe, God, and plants.


My First Encounter With Marosa


On the first three nights, these are the messages that Marosa communicated to me through my dreams. It was incredible, and I had no idea that this was even possible. Following the first three nights drinking Marosa, I had a five day break where I returned to eating normal healthy, clean food before my first ayahuasca ceremony.


In those three days drinking Marosa, I could feel how my body was completely detoxified and cleansed. I felt fantastic. Those days were intense, but definitely worth the work. It was the perfect way to prepare for my first ayahuasca ceremony at Ani Shinan.


This is just the first of a series of articles where I will share my experience dieting Marosa and drinking ayahuasca at Ani Shinan. It is important to keep in mind that each person has a unique experience with the medicine.


Ayahuasca doesn't show us what we want, she shows us what we need to heal ourselves. If you are feeling called to drink this sacred plant medicine or do a diet in the Amazon, Ani Shinan's healing center is a great place to start your journey.


If you feel this call to deepen your connection with the medicine, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.


Feel free to send us an email to contact@anishinan.org or WhatsApp message to +41 78 628 86 19 (Marco Fischer) to schedule a call and create your custom ayahuasca experience in Peru.


A new adventure is waiting for you in the jungle of Peru! See you soon!



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