The Spirit of Ayni

Trini and I landed in Lima, Peru with no complications. Along with us came Enrique, Hector, and Tony from our sweat lodge circle in the Northeast San Fernando Valley. We have been preparing for this trip for several months -- with special sweat ceremonies, weekly hikes, and a trip in the fall to Navajo land for ceremonies with one of our elders, Anthony Lee.

Our guides in Peru are Aeli Ronin Yaka and Dona Cotrina, two amazing woman elders and medicine people. They have been working hard to make sure we have places to stay, places to visits, ceremonies with medicine, baths, and more. They are also providing us teachings in the Quechua culture (the foundation of the Inca culture). One thing we learned was about the spirit of Ayni, sharing and giving without expecting the same in return. This is very much in line with most indigenous teachings.

After a nice dinner and rest in the vibrant Miraflores neighborhood of Lima, we got up at 3 AM to get ready for a flight to Cusco, the old Inca capital. Once in Cusco -- or Qosqo, as it´s often written -- we ended up at the Amaru Hostal, named after the reknown Inca warrior Tupac Amaru.

We also went to several Inca temples and sacred sites: Saqsaywaman, Qénqo, and Tambomachay. We did a few ceremonies there. The attitude issue is strong here -- we're up at around 10,000 feet and you can get disoriented and even sick. But we're in good hands -- with natural indigenous medicine, healing work, and teachings.

Tomorrow we will prepare to go on a train to Machu Picchu, one of the most vital energy sites on this earth.

We are witnessing the wonderful concept of Ayni. It's something we plan to bring back with us after our 13-day spiritual journey in the ancient lands of some of our most important continental ancestors.

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