Indigenous communities in the Amazon rainforest have used Ayahuasca, commonly known as “the vine of the soul,” for thousands of years to promote spiritual and physical healing. To connect with the spiritual world and facilitate healing for its members, the Native American Church, also known as the Peyote Way Church, has integrated the usage of Ayahuasca in its ceremonies with spiritual healers.
Quanah Parker, who belonged to the Comanche tribe, created the Native American Church in 1918. Peyote is a miniature cactus containing the hallucinogenic substance mescaline, and Parker thought it was a method to communicate with the spiritual world and promote healing. The Native American tribes had long used peyote in religious rituals, but Parker was the first to build a formal church centered on drug usage.
Although it is a relatively recent phenomenon, ayahuasca use in the Native American Church has already become a significant aspect of the church’s spiritual activities. Spiritual healers are recruited for their expertise and background with the plant to lead ayahuasca ceremonies. These healers make the Ayahuasca drink and show the participants in the ceremony.
The Native American Church’s spiritual healers think that Ayahuasca can enable people to communicate with their ancestors and the spiritual world. They also believe the plant can heal both the body and the soul. Ayahuasca use is considered to aid people in overcoming addiction, depression, and other mental health difficulties. In addition, Ayahuasca can help those who are afflicted with chronic pain, cancer, and other diseases, according to the Native American Church’s spiritual healers.
There is debate around the Native American Church’s use of Ayahuasca. The Native American Church has had to fight for the right to use Peyote and Ayahuasca in their religious ceremonies because it is prohibited to use psychoactive substances in religious rites in the United States.