- Iquitos, Peru
Don Romulo is the main master shaman that we are aligned and work with, for our Ayahuasca ceremonies. Don Romulo is 77 years old as of August 2013, born in 1936, he is a rare breed of shaman called a “Banco Ayahuascero”. As foreign as the description may seem to us in our cultural padagrim a “Banco” has the ability through many years of strict diets, isolation in the jungle, working with Ayahuasca and the spirits to become the “chair” or “bank” of the spirits in order for the entry of the spirits into his body to help people. They have mastered the spiritual aspect of earth, water, air and fire. Here is Don Romulos’ history in his own words. “My first experience with Ayahuasca I was 8 years old. When I drank with my oldest brother on this very dark night it was revealed to me many secrets that Ayahuasca keeps. I made the decision to become a shaman because my father and oldest brother were shaman and also I saw a lot of people who needed help with diseases that science could not find the cause of the malady. After my first ceremony I began a regime of strict diets no salt, sugar, spicy, acidic or oily foods. With this diet I received much knowledge of the medicinal plants that exist in the Amazon. After this I began to do ceremonies with Ayahuasca and during my visions I encountered many small humanoids similar to what the appearance of elves might look like, they taught me how to see the disease that the patient was suffering from and what medicinal plants were needed to alleviate the condition. When I was 12 years old, the first person I was able to cure was baby who was suffering from manchari (a condition defined by apparent fright and continued crying and nervous fits that does not subside over a period of time), Through the process taught to me by the spirits and Ayahuasca the manchari was cured. To be a shaman I must know how to cure many diseases. I continued my ceremonies and diets into the depths of the jungle so I could have the ability to concentrate and continue to learn more Icaros (magical healing songs) because different problems have their own icaros to remedy the problem. As I continued to diet more quickly I learned many many things including many more medicinal plants, trees, and vines that Mother Nature has given to us. When I was 20 years old I was given the medicine of “La Ponga” ( a spiritual tree in the amazon) which was given to me like a phlegm called Mariri. With this phlegm I then became able to cure people who were inflicted with witchcraft from sorcerers or Brujos (practitioners of negative magical works). As a shaman it is necessary to be prepared for all of this to have medicinal and defensive ability. To be a shaman you have to be strong and brave because we are exposed to dangers of the brujos. Ayahuasca holds many secrets, many people do not know what is real and exists in the physical and spiritual world. To study the spirit world with Ayahuasca has a beginning but not an end. At my age now I have allot of knowledge about Ayahuasca. I have taught many people on the path with Ayahuasca and I am not stingy teaching what I know.” The lineage of Don Romulo goes back many generations so far that there is no record or memory past his great great grandfather. I, William have been a testament to the power and integrity that Don Romulo works with, he is a humble man and very wise. If only a handful of us could know just a portion of his experience our lives would be enriched immeasurably.