I spent 6 months working at a beautiful retreat centre in Costa Rica some years ago. A retreat centre where the healing modality people were turning up for was a potent, psychedelic plant medicine, Ayahuasca. The program involved 7 nights, 4 nights drinking the medicine and 3 nights of Breathwork.

The plant medicine is powerful, as I had expected. Deep clearing, meetings with the Divine, a sense of complete oneness with the world around us, talking to the trees … you know, the usual! But what kept blowing my mind was the insights, clarity and total peace and connection that was coming from the evenings of just breathing. No external psychedelics required. I, as well as the other guests showing up every week, were having profound experiences, sometimes even more so than the evenings of plant medicine.

Many people describe an emotional release during their Breathwork sessions. It’s a fascinating phenomenon; we breathe in a certain pattern, then thoughts and emotions arise. We allow them to be felt, staying with the breath and they let go, leaving us feeling lighter, freer, calmer.

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