Like ayahuasca, the teachings of chiric sanango can be life-changing.

It’s just as well that my journey continues. That seems to be what life is all about after all.

As of this blog post, I’ve now tried ayahuasca, ajo sacha and now chiric sanango.

This follows in my quest to:

  • unlearn the wrong lessons of my life
  • undo my poor thinking
  • open my heart more
  • release stuck emotions from my past experiences
  • allow forgiveness to come more easily and completely
  • basically to try to be a better human being while I’m still here

How I prepared my chiric sanango rootbark

Chiric sanango is an extremely hard root. It was the toughest wood I have ever encountered.

My attempts to use a knife to scrape shavings from the root proved too dangerous — I almost cut myself with the amount of force I was putting into it. Someone with more upper body strength might have better luck, but that’s not me.

Since the knife proved too dangerous, I tried using a file (first stone, then a metal file) in an attempt to get some powdered root instead. All I ended up doing was damaging two files.

I don’t know how native preparers do it, maybe they use a machete or perhaps they are strong men and women (unlike moi). From my own experience of trying to scrape the root, I can say that chiric sanango is a formidable plant and one that deserves the utmost respect.

In the end, I prepared my chiric sanango the only way I could — I put one entire cut root (thankfully they were already cut up into sections) into a cup of boiling hot water from a kettle, covered the cup with a lid and let this sit for several hours.

I would then drink this chiric sanango-infused water about an hour before bed.

To my relief, I’ve found that this simple infusion method works.

Physical effects from chiric sanango

Quite soon after drinking the infusion, I would experience some strange and unique sensations.

  • my lips would feel numb and tingly
  • deep chills that had nothing to do with the weather would course through my body, followed by periods of sudden warmth
  • and I had some slight difficulty balancing when standing

To clarify, none of these effects felt scary or dangerous. I had difficulty balancing, but I could walk and I did not fall — it was akin to standing up on a rocky boat. I wobbled a little when I stood or turned too quickly, but it was no biggie. I experienced nothing scary, but I believe the dose matters very much in this.

I’ve read of people not being able to walk without assistance after taking chiric sanango. But I didn’t want that so I kept my dosage at something that I could handle.

This is because the whole point of me continuing my journey with gentler teacher plants like ajo sacha and chiric sanango is so that I could continue learning and growing on normal nights when I have to get up the next morning and work a full day.

In contrast, a stronger teacher plant like ayahuasca is something that I can only take 1-3 times a year as it requires planning on my part. With ayahuasca, I always need to make sure that I’ll have a few free days after to recover. This is not the case with gentler teachers like chiric sanango and ajo sacha.

By the way, there’s something quite different with the effects from chiric sanango.

I’ve found that “leftover remnants” seem to stay in my body for a little bit longer. For a few days after taking chiric sanango, at odd times, I would sometimes feel the same chill sweep through my body for a few moments, and a little tingling here and there. These are fleeting and doesn’t affect my normal functioning. And I know that they were not normal chills — the physical sensations I get from chiric sanango have a distinct “flavour” that’s unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced.

My dosage of chiric sanango

The first time I tried chiric sanango, I was cautious and drank only half a cup of the watery concoction.

The taste and smell of the infusion is mild and “woodsy” — it’s very easy to drink down.

Eventually, I progressed from half a cup to drinking the full cup. This seems to be enough for me and I have no desire to push it further in terms of dosage.

I’m also able to reuse the chiric sanango root for one more cup. I simply add more water and let the root infuse in the fridge for a day. It was still good and effective. (I’ve tried re-using it a third time, but the smell of the water was not good, so I trusted my nose and did not take the chance).

I’ve considered an alternate method of putting the roots in my pressure cooker, but I don’t know if the extreme heat and pressure will lead to killing the effects so I eventually decided against it. I won’t know until I try of course (it might turn out to be great).

Spiritual effects from chiric sanango

At the time of writing this, I’ve taken chiric sanango only a few times. Like other teacher plants, I believe that what will be revealed to me in dreams will change over time. I’ll see what I need to at the time.

With chiric sanango, the spiritual effects come to me through intense dreams (just like ajo sacha). I fall asleep normally, but the alternate cold and warmth makes me throw my blanket on and off me several times before I finally fall into a pretty deep slumber.

My dreams with chiric sanango have been intense and vivid. They have been chaotic and in full colour, and then some. It all also seems to be accelerated, like I’m watching a movie at five times the speed, yet while I’m in the dream, I can still follow all that’s happening and feel all the emotions with every scene deeply.

The dreams are not unpleasant, but they’re not pleasant either. I’m made to feel strong emotions that are sometimes uncomfortable. That’s par for the course though, and compared to ayahuasca, the dreams I’ve had with chiric sanango are easy peasy. Unfortunately, I’ve forgotten pretty much all of my dreams within 10 minutes of waking up in the morning so I have nothing much to share here.

The only thing I was able to hold onto and still recall so far is one strange scene of me brushing an ex-friend’s hair briefly. I think I could remember it because it was very surprising.

This ex-friend of mine (I’ll call her Rose) has cut me and our other friends out of her life over the last 1-2 years. I have not talked to Rose for a long time and do no wish to have her in my life again.

Nevertheless, I’ve been wanting to forgive her in my heart and move on with peace. I believe Rose is a good person who’s hurting the people around her because she herself is suffering deeply. I thought I’ve had some success with forgiveness as I was able to pray for Rose at one point and feel true compassion for her.

But a spanner got thrown in the works recently that showed me that my forgiveness of Rose was not yet complete.

I got to know that Rose had been treating a mutual friend of ours (who I’ll call Sarah) very, very poorly. Rose and Sarah have not been on speaking terms for months, but Sarah had emailed Rose recently to remind her of a debt that she had promised to pay a long time ago. It’s almost $2,000, so not an insignificant sum.

Rose emailed Sarah back, adamantly refusing to pay (reneging on her earlier promise) and threatened to file a police report if Sarah contacts her again. I saw Sarah’s initial email to Rose and it was polite and respectful. So Rose’s vitriol-filled response was baffling.

Sarah found out that Rose had changed her phone number and blocked most of our mutual friends on social media.

Anyway, because of this and after seeing her horrible e-mail reply to Sarah, my feelings toward Rose soured even further than they have ever been. And all of my old anger towards her came flooding back. And I felt that since that was possible, my forgiving of her back then must have been incomplete somehow, even though it was real to me at the time.

So lately I had been trying to work through my feelings again and using lessons in A Course in Miracles to guide me toward forgiving Rose (again). It had not been easy and wondered if maybe forgiveness was just not in me…

So perhaps my chiric sanango dream where I saw myself brushing Rose’s hair (and we seemed to be friends again) was showing me that forgiveness is possible. Later the next day, I realised that my anger towards her had “come unstuck”. My anger about the situation was no longer some heavy, permanent knotted thing, but something light, loose and quite unimportant. I don’t know how else to describe it.

It was also easier for me to change my perspective about other things throughout the day at work.

A colleague had sent me a rather rude email. Ordinarily, I would have been angry and indignant. But I was only angry for a short moment. It was as if the feeling could not “stick” strongly to me. It was easy for me to change my thinking about the situation, let my boss deal with it himself, and get on with my workday. There was none of the usual weight and importance attached to it.

It took a few times taking chiric sanango for me to see its benefits. The first time I took chiric sanango, I confess that I felt a little disappointed upon waking up the next day.

I had hoped that it would bring me some clear vision or teachings like I’ve had with ajo sacha and ayahuasca. But most of the dreams I’ve had with chiric sanango were a chaotic mix of fast-moving scenes and strong emotions. I haven’t been able to discern much meaning from them.

But I believe now that the chaos and intense emotions of my dreams might have been very helpful even though I cannot often consciously parse their meaning.

I know that ayahuasca can rewire neural connections in our brains, which is why its effects are so life-changing. I can easily imagine that chiric sanango can accomplish something similar, yet unseen.

Perhaps chiric sanango forces me to face and feel the painful emotions that I avoid in my waking life. Maybe it gives me a second chance to feel them completely without distraction, and this lets me have the opportunity to see them in a different way and safely let them go.

For me at least, chiric sanango leads to the uncovering and releasing of stuck emotions for good (as opposed to repressing and forgetting them in my mind, but never really “forgetting” in my soul/heart).

So far, I’ve felt a great loosening in my heart and mind, and increasing ease in dealing with life in the days after taking chiric sanango.

I’m like most people and am sometimes anxious about the future (and I can worry with the best of them!), so this greater ease in my self has been a very welcome change, and one that I hope to nurture.