Bernhard Karshagen

Born and raised in South Africa, Bernhard has a background in corporate consulting until 2007, whereafter he changed direction and embarked on a spiritual path of healing for himsellf. He has trained in different modalities, including various energy healing techniques, family constellations and coaching methodology. Plant spirit shamanism using San Pedro has been his focus full time since 2010.

Bernhard currently provides San Pedro retreats and ceremonies, melding the use of the medicine with elements of African shamanism. He is intuitive and has the ability to help people to look at situations from a different perspective, helping them to see through the layers of their thought patterns and guiding them to connect with their own truth. Bernhard engages with people in a direct, yet gentle manner, guiding them to identify and let go of limiting beliefs, to step into their own being and empower them to return to their hearts. Bernhard has a good understanding of depression, having suffered from this illness for over 10 years. He shares the wisdom and teachings that he has learned from his own healing experiences and uses this as the foundation for his work.

Tags: huachuma san pedro

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  • Marlena Miller   May 29, 2015

      Only the BEST.....Better than all the rest....

    How can two full days of a very instrumental experience get summed up into words.???? First, thank you Berhnard. You opened my heart, lifted my spirits and freed my soul. At the tender age of 58, I became a liberated and yet an intricate piece of the fabric of life around me. The opportunities that opened up from my willingness to explore new adventures from a vantage point of excitement and joy are a direct result of time spent under the guidance of Berhnard. THANK YOU😎😉☺️

  • Alexandra Zgondea   October 10, 2015

      He has what it takes to be a good healer: great intuition, a big heart and a warm smile

    Thank you Bernard! I consider myself lucky for meeting you. During the two ceremonies I took part of I had the opportunity to know myself better, open my heart and connect with nature. It was like being a child again! And all that was possible with your guidance: you knew exactly what, and when to say it, so that all the things come into place. I hope I'll meet you again at some point!

  • Elizabeth!   May 29, 2015


    Bernhard has such deep wisdom and gentleness. He gave me great guidance in approaching the medicine, which led to rich and insightful experiences. The San Pedro is indescribable, difficult yet sublime. So healing! I can't recommend him enough and have talked to more than a few close friends about their visiting him. He is so approachable and honestly I feel that there is so much more I want to learn from him. I foresee another trip to Peru in my future for sure! This is a real healer and a very supportive person. If you are considering working with him, you will be in very capable hands.

  • Mona Ghasemi   May 30, 2015

      Powerful Cleanse

    I wasn't sure what to expect going into the retreat and I felt like my energy was very much blocked during the first ceremony. Bernhard realized this right away and he intuitively started to perform a cleansing ritual. I could feel the powerful energy moving through my body as he was performing the cleanse and I could also feel it moving out. The whole experience was profound and I felt like an old external force had just been removed from my body. It's hard to explain what happened but both Bernhard and I knew that it was much needed. I work in a professional corporate environment and I am a logical person but after this experience I can definitely say that there are other forces outside of what we can see and feel in the material world at work. Thank you Bernhard for this clearing my energy, for the healing and for opening me up to new beautiful experiences.

  • Rachel Durchslag   May 29, 2015

      An unbelievable healer

    Working with Bernhard is an extraordinary experience. The moment I met him I was taken aback by how clean his energy is, how kind his heart is, and how knowledgeable his mind. Bernhard held my hand through my healing experience, and helped me navigate everything I went through with light and mindfulness. Under his guidance I was able to access a spiritual awakening that truly changed my life. I will be forever grateful to him and the gifts that he shares with those he works with.

  • Jamers Lynn Hart   May 29, 2015

      The Life Changing work of San Pedro and Bernard

    Oh oh oh where do I begin. Below I will attach a link to the blog post I wrote about my experience with Bernard and the beautiful spirit of San Pedro which will say much more than I could ever write here. Bernhard was made for this work and I am eternally grateful I was able to get to know him and work with him. He patiently answered all of our questions and made me understand a fundamental part of myself that I hadn't understood before the retreat. San Pedro, albeit way different from Ayahuasca, gently shows us into our hearts and uncovers what we may or may not want to see and feel. Bernhard was there the whole time checking in and making sure we were ok and was able to talk me through everything I was feeling. Between my honest introspection, the medicine, and his profound understanding of the experience and spirituality/life in general, I feel like there was never anything we couldn't understand and uncover. I'm so excited that he is opening his own retreat center and I urge anyone to try it for themselves. You truly will open up more than you could imagine. Here is more insight on the experience

  • Bill Figueroa   May 30, 2015

      New Perspective

    The retreat provided me with a new perspective on my life. I have always had eyes but now I can see. We don't ever get a chance to step outside of our minds and see the world alive around us. I borrowed a new set of glasses during the retreat which enabled me to focus on the living world of Creation. I connected with the good Spirits that live there in the other plain. They showed me that they are there existing alongside us on the same journey of life. They are there to show us the way to enlightenment if we call upon them. Now I know they have always been there. I just could not see them. Bill Fig

  • Ryan Borg   May 30, 2015

      Great Experience

    I wasn't too sure what to expect when meeting Bernhard but his gentle voice and calm demeanour made all of our ceremonies very comfortable even in tough times. HIs words of wisdom will always stay with me and were also life changing for myself. I cannot thank Bernhard enough for the guidance he provided to me and his constant advice to the rest of the group when needed. Thanks Bernhard!!!

  • Teresa Shore   May 30, 2015

      Authentic, Gifted.... A Genuine, Rare Healer

    I had the privilege of meeting Bernard when I attended a tour in Feb 2015 through (an Ayahuasca & San Pedro Retreat in the Sacred Valley, Cusco). Bernard and his wife led our San Pedro ceremonies during this tour. As a middle-aged professional single mother of two college students, this was my first experience with plant healing, shamanism, etc. I went in with few expectations. Little did I realize how critically important it was to have an experienced, compassionate, nonjudgemental healer present. Like many others who have participated in these ceremonies, my experience was totally unique -- and consisted of both very pleasant and very dark experiences. It was Bernard who helped me navigate through my fear and face the lessons that were being presented to me. I became suddenly aware of just how powerful his healing is, as I witnessed it in action. This trip was four months ago. I still haven't written what will be a five star review of the entire experience -- because I am still witnessing tremendous changes in my life unfolding. It is truly profound. If you are on the fence about a trip/tour of this nature, I highly recommend that every person try this. It is truly life changing. Bernard is a man who is slight in stature and possesses a quiet, soft voice. But his story and message can't not have a significant impact on anyone who opens their heart to listen. I will continue to seek out Bernard and his healing as I embark further upon what is the most exciting journey of my lifetime. In fact, I will be looking to send my children to have their own experiences in this venue, under Bernard's tutelage. To place my children under his guidance -- is the most resounding endorsement I could possibly give.

  • Alex Jay   May 30, 2015

      San Pedro..fantastic guide!

    Bernhard has a knowledge with San Pedro healing that truly is a gift. He has found his purpose to the world and it shows by how sincere he was with his one-on-one guidance during the sessions with San Pedro. Everything Bernhard put into words perfectly supplemented my own experience and I feel having a great guide is paramount when trying San Pedro for the first time. Highly recommended!

  • Maxime Lauzon   May 30, 2015

      He really help me.

    I join him on his retreat and he helped me with my personal depression problem. He really listen to you and take the time to talk to you and help you anyway he can. He is a real great guy. He ll have a special place in my heart.

  • Magdalyn Jacques   May 31, 2015

      Impactful, Understanding and Gifted.

    Bernhard was the most wonderful guide throughout the experience. He listened with his entire gifted heart and provided authentic feedback helping me to shift my perspective and to deeply heal myself. I was tremendously grateful for his presence throughout the experience and carry those same feelings onward for the impact he has had on myself and so many others. I sincerely hope we meet again.

  • Lauren Cooper   October 05, 2015

      Get ready to open your heart!

    I participated in two San Pedro ceremonies with Bernhard through Spirit Plant Journeys (, and I was blown away by the potency and purity of both his medicine and his skill at leading all of us on two epic journeys. I had one particularly challenging ceremony, and Bernhard was by my side for as much as I needed him. He truly cares deeply about his work and about those who come across his path. He speaks with an authenticity and wisdom that comes from someone who is connected to those spiritual and essential sources that can help us find our profound healing and growth. It's been a long time that I've met someone who has changed my life for the better, but Berhnard certainly has, and I hope he will yours.

  • Tony Ruiz   June 04, 2015

      An amazing person!

    My name is Tony. I'm an actor. I spend lots of time studying the human condition and working in the field. When I had the privilege of getting to know Bernhard inside of Ceremony he amazed me. The experience changed me forever. He is such a compassionate, wise, and humbled person. I highly recommend him to people looking for truth, beauty, and healing. I will never forget such a person and will return for future ceremonies. Bernhard is one of a kind. There are words that he spoke to me that are still ringing him my head from the last ceremony I had months ago. All guiding me toward a truer way of living.

  • Rob Paul   June 05, 2015

      Such an amazing shaman

    I had such a powerful experience working with Bernhard that now, some weeks later, it's still mind blowing to think about. San Pedro is a very powerful medicine, and I know for sure that I would have only got a small fraction of the healing and learning had Bernhard not been such a skilled and intuitive healer. Among other things, Bernhard was able to pinpoint a rather large issue in my life, just pulling it out of the ether somewhere. I didn't say a word to him about structure in my life and yet he knew it was a big issue, and he then proceeded to patiently and skillfully break down for me why, and then how to move into a better paradigm. He then spent hours working with me, going much deeper than I had even hoped or expected. For years now I've been waiting to work with a teacher that really got through to me in the way that Bernhard did, and I'm so grateful for him, the experience, and the medicine. He was even kind of enough to send lengthy follow up messages afterwards as things we'd talked about working through resurfaced in my life. Working with Bernhard is one of the best things that's happened to me, and I will strongly recommend, no, I will implore working with him to anyone who shows interest in sacred plant medicines. Much love!

  • Damian Healy   June 07, 2015

      Journey to the Andes and within myself

    I was introduced to Bernhard and San Padro via I was lucky enough to experience two ceremonies with Bernhard. He is a very gifted Shaman who has a very warm and disarming energy about him. These qualities prove quite useful as San Padro as it is a very powerful healing plant. The Journey is a very personal one but Bernhard’s soothing voice and wise words are there to help guide you through. The ceremonies are held outside (weather permitting) and Bernhard encourages you to connect with the nature around you. He creates a quite, comfortable environment for your journey, which proved to be both mentally and physically healing for me. Hailing from Johannesburg Bernhard is familiar with the urban grind and the positive and negative things that go along with that lifestyle. Coming from New York City I found he was sensitive and aware of the issues that those of us in the urban world deal with. If you are looking to try to work on a personal issue, either emotional or physical with San Padro, I strongly suggest Bernhard as he is a good man with good intentions that is there to help.

  • Nicole Gogas   June 08, 2015

      Gentle Soul of Love

    My partner and I had the privilege to meet Bernhard, a Huachumero, and his beautiful family during our Spirit Plant Journeys retreat. He carries vast knowledge and understanding of the medicinal cactus, sharing its healing capabilities for the mind, body and soul. A warm hearted, true spirited soul who gave us great comfort, guidance and support during our experience with San Pedro. He would ensure that our needs were taken care of, our questions answered and that we knew how to benefit the most from the ceremonies. Genuinely kind, very approachable and easy to talk to, we couldn't of asked for anyone better. Thank you kindly for all you did for us during the San Pedro ceremonies!

  • Leigh   June 09, 2015

      A Wonderful, Intuitive Guide

    Bernhard is everything one could ask for in an experienced San Pedro facilitator. He truly cares and focuses on YOU - about guiding you through working with this medicinal plant to aid in your healing. From all of his experiences, he is able to assist those with a variety of different kinds of resistance and obstacles that arise. I cannot stress how important this is, for you my think and have a very clear intention on what it is you utilizing the plant medicine to work on and heal but sometimes things come up that you are not prepared for. For example, in my first San Pedro experience I had a lot of physical pain/sickness and was so grateful for his guidance and caring nature. He offered insight that guided me to explore why I was having these symptoms and also offered suggestions on how best to release them. When working with medicinal plants, especially for the first time, one cannot place enough value on the importance of having a well-centered and intuitive facilitator to assist you. I am forever grateful that I was lead to him and highly recommend him for those who are called to use this plant in their healing process.

  • Joseph Kim   June 13, 2015

      Wise and loving guide

    Bernhard is a wonderful person and amazing guide to the spiritual healing power of plants.

  • JL Bitter   June 15, 2015

      Patient and kind

    Bernhard played a key role in rounding out my spiritual experience while I participated in one of Spirit Plant Journey's retreats this past March. I arrived in Peru admittedly lacking knowledge of how strongly San Pedro and ayahuasca would provoke me to look deeper into myself. More specifically, while I was open and excited about the overall experience, I was rather unprepared for the intensity of the medicine. Bernhard helped me to overcome that. Bernhard intuitively noticed the resistance stemming from my nervousness and showed just the right amount of support to allow me to become comfortable with my discomfort and allow the medicine to do its work. Our conversations were uplifting and enlightening; he made sure I knew he was there if I had any questions or wanted to discuss something, but never overstepped boundaries that would influence my own individual experience. Bernhard was an incredibly important figure in my learning deeper about myself through San Pedro and I'm sure that anyone that chooses to undertake ayahuasca and/or San Pedro would find him to be a similar asset during their journey.

  • John Dee   June 16, 2015

      What to say...

    Wachuma could not have chosen a better guide for us, we, those, who have had the honour of being guided under Bernhard's gentle wing, weaving his space creating magic..., so subtle you hardly know he's there, to prepare the way and this he does, in profound ways you only later realise, to the place where wachuma, the teacher, the revealer shows you what it will......Thank you Bernhard for guiding me to her, and where through her loving influence, I found myself in a most precious place, a place where I could rest blissfully and unravel to the chords of natures song, swaying from each precious, ever present moment to the next, unbound by concepts and time and everything that goes with it....Ah..., when I think of that space, in that place,here inside my chest.... Love, thanks and gratitude to you Bernhard

  • catherine smith-gaines   November 29, 2015

      Best healer ever!

    My husband and I stayed at Bernard's new healing center in Huaran, Peru. It was lovely. The room, the food, and the views of the Andes were wonderful. And then there were the San Pedro ceremonies which were handled so perfectly by Bernhard. I had 4 ceremonies and Bernhard was there for me and for any other participants the entire time. He would check in on me several times and provide the guidance and wisdom I needed to work with the San Pedro and have the best experience possible. During the days when I was not doing the San Pedro, he still continued to check up on me and spent lots of time with me, sharing his experiences, guidance, wisdom and comfort. He also gave me suggestions for follow up for when I returned home to the states. Bernhard is so special and yet so down to earth, no superiority airs about him at all! For both my husband and me, our expectations were way exceeded by Bernhard and his healing center. We felt like part of his family which included his lovely wife Lisa-Marie, his sweet daughter Rose, and 2 amazing cats. I highly recommend Bernhard and his healing center to anyone.

  • Rachael Sorensen   March 02, 2016

      A crucial experience.

    In July 2015, I was blessed to receive San Pedro and healing from Bernhard as a part of a retreat offered by Spirit Plant Journeys. Considering that ayahuasca was what I was seeking to assist in the healing of some personal irks and pains, San Pedro had seemed to me (quite naively) as somewhat of a sideshow. Like all bad assumptions, that of course was obliterated after my first ceremony with Bernhard. Not only did the cactus make me sit up and listen to its very own teachings it had to give me, but Bernhard showed himself to be a very special healer. On my last ceremony, he identified something that I was doing a very good job of distracting myself from - an energetic spike protruding from and covering my back left shoulder. Something I had created when I was younger as protection from what was difficult. My own energetic armour. Now, not only not serving me, but something quite destructive. I adamantly believe that if Bernhard hadn't observed this, then I probably wouldn't have dived into that rabbit hole. Undertaking the work, that now 7 months later, has led to profound and intricate transformation in my life. I do not think my journey of healing is over, and I am planning to see Bernhard again to help me continue on with this. Thank you so, so much Bernhard. Un abrazo :) Rachael

  • Rick LaBarbera   June 22, 2016

      Profound Results

    i visited Bernhard and Liza Marie in March 2016. I had specific intention for the medicine work. i have had frequent migraines, chronic fatigue, impaired digestion, difficulty sleeping, and a few spots of psoriasis. most of this has been going on for 10+ years and i've tried many doctors, alternative therapies, nutritional balancing, hair tissue analysis, meditation, sauna, etc. I tend to be a troubleshooter and will stay with a problem until i find the root cause. All of my previous work had led me to understand that i had something deep in my unconscious that was causing most of my symptoms. Somehow my relentless research led me to the topic of plant medicine, ayahuasca, and san pedro. After much reading i decided that i was not ready for an ayahuasca ordeal and i thought i could maybe get some baseline healing done with san pedro. After reading many of the reviews on this site i decided to come to Ubuntu Wasi and work with San Pedro with Bernhard's help. It's been 3 months since i've returned from Peru. Here are my observations: 1) i estimate about 75% reduction in frequency of migraine; 2) i'm sleeping all through the night now; 3) i have enough energy to exercise; 4) the small bit of psoriasis have almost completely disappeared; 4) i am no longer tormented by the past or worried about the future; 5) meditation is easier and i look forward to it every day; 6) i'm able to be present with my family; 7) more positive outlook/less cynical. I'm not sure exactly what it was that the medicine fixed, but i know i let go of something deep within that was no longer serving me. After 10+ years of suffering i am totally amazed with the healing power of San Pedro. It's the most effective medicine i've experienced. My advice to anyone who is dealing with chronic illness is this: Heal the spirit first! The body will follow the spirit back to wellness. San Pedro is a profound healer. Bernhard is a gifted, experienced guide. Their place in Huaran is so beautiful. I can't wait to return someday.

  • Kimberly Rae Brown   May 31, 2016

      A Reason to Travel to Peru

    San Pedro is an amazing plant spirit and its ability to open a person is phenomenal. My power to speak my truth and open my heart over the past 5 months since traveling to Peru has been great. However, without Bernhard's guidance and care, I am not sure if this would have been the case. He is kind and gentle and his ability to work right along side the plant was what helped me the most. I will definitely be looking Bernhard up next time I travel to Peru!

  • Therese Stoll   May 19, 2016

      Connected :-)

    In December 2015 I joined Bernhard for 3 ceremonies and also stayed at Ubuntu Wasi for some nights. If I am trying to think of the most impressive experience during 6 month of travel, the wachuma ceremonies were the best out of it all. I got deeply connected with nature and with myself. The cactus opened another dimension of conciousness for me so I was able to work on different subjects. Bernhard was always a great help, very gentle, kind and challenging in the right moment. I also loved the whole Ubuntu Wasi very much, everything is in it's place, a beautiful space to discover your self and chill out after the ceremony at the fire place. I had tryed San Pedro and Ayahuasca at other places too, but I never felt as save and well guided as with Bernhard. I'll be back!

  • Matthew Simpson   October 22, 2016

      Beautiful Space/Strong Medicine

    The space was beautifully situated in the sacred valley in Peru. Short distance from Pisoq. The Medicine served was very strong. Frankly I was taken off guard being engaged while I was in my journey.

  • Rachael Sorensen   June 19, 2016

      A life changing experience in a magical place with one of the best huachuma shamans in Peru!

    I've been working with Bernhard and his beautiful San Pedro medicine since July 2015 and do not have adequate words to describe the gratitude I have for having crossed paths with him. Bernhard's medicine space 'Ubuntu Ayni' is truly something special, a home away from home where people from all over gather together to heal themselves, and essentially the world while they're at it. I always feel like I am in safe hands with Bernhard - his wisdom, experience and the guidance he offers in and out of ceremony has played a crucial part in the transformation of my own life. I feel completely accepted and free to be me when I am in his space - a rare thing to find indeed. Bernhard is truly one of the best San Pedro shamans I have ever worked with and I look forward to the continuation of our relationship as I explore the medicine world even deeper.

  • Bobby Asplund   June 23, 2016

      Powerful Healer and Friend

    I spent a month at Bernhard's - doing ceremonies as well as enjoying the amazing space he and his family have created at Ubuntu Ayni. Bernhard is an amazing guide, whether it is during ceremony or day-to-day life, and quickly felt like an old friend. He is incredibly sweet and his knowledge is vast, from his work with San Pedro to African shamanism. The space is also a reflection of his abilities. The housing is gorgeous and everything about it makes you feel at home. The garden is also beautiful and perfect for his ceremonies. His family is incredibly warm to the guests - often joining for dinner or spending time chatting in the gardens on off days. I cannot recommend Bernhard enough for both ceremonies as well as a place to stay while in the Sacred Valley. I very much miss my time there.

  • Saskia Boer   July 10, 2016

      Such a great place!!

    Thanks lots Bernard! I had such a good time at your beautiful place in Huran! I planned staying a few days but stayed for a few weeks:-) I learned a lot from all the conversations we've had. You have so much wisdom inside you but you keep a open and learning attitude towards the world and the work you are doing. I really like the way you work with people, the gentle way. Thanks for creating this safe and warm space! I miss the good food, the fires at nighttime, the sky full of stars, the smell of eucalyptus, the flowers in the garden, the hummingbird but most of all the wonderful people! I come back for sure:-)


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