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March 16-27, 2019

Yacumaman Sanctuary of Integral Shamanism

Tarapoto, upper Peruvian Amazon

Investment:  $1777

Early bird discount:  Sign up before January 15, 2019 and save $177

$500 non refundable deposit due to register

Space is limited to 15 

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One of the grandest ceremonies of life is birth.  The entrance onto the earth plane is a sacred portal, which begins the chapter to our soul’s current evolutionary journey. 

To attend to a birthing woman is a sacred charge, for in the moment the baby descends the birth canal, a woman literally becomes a bridge between realms, an opening between heaven and earth. 

Foreons, women have birthed in the solace of their homes, in nature and in the trusted company of their loved ones and other women who attended to them, nourished and supported them in this initiatic process.

Babies were received directly into the arms of their mothers and mothers received the care they needed in this delicate time.  Since the advent of industrialism and conventional medicine, birth has become medicalized and the power and sacredness we once experienced as norm, has been stripped away. 

We, as humanity are in the process of reclaiming the sacred portal of birth. 

For babies, for mothers and for the sanity and survival of our own humanness.

And we do this, one birth at a time.

To be a doula is an archaic role that a woman plays in the life of another woman that has deep, soul-oriented implications.  The word doula comes from the Greek and literally translates to mean, ¨woman´s servant.¨


A Ceremonial Doula is a medium for mother and family.  

She is a clear, grounded and informed conduit of sacred lifeways. 

She is carrier of a wealth of wisdom:  anatomy, physiology, plant medicine, holistic techniques and shamanic realm-shifting. 

She is a guardian to women on the precipice of their initiation into Motherhood.

She is a priestess in the primordial Temple of birth.

 This path embodies the service aspect of priestesshood.  It is a noble, perennial and ancient path to serve, support and assist a woman in her pregnancy, birthing and postpartum initiations. 

To serve as a priestess in the Temple of Birth is a high calling. 

Do you hear it?

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We gather in the Upper Peruvian Amazon for a unique opportunity to receive initiation into the ancient ways of Doulaship, which integrates the traditional academic approach and education with shamanic and ceremonial practices.  This intentional interface was conceived to empower women to be able to show up impeccably in the lives of other women with tools and wisdom to support and honor them as they cross their rite of passage into Motherhood.  Walking this path greatly enriches the lives of our sisters, our children, our families, our communities and the accumulated effects radiate outward to enhance and reveal the divine qualities within our extended human family. 

The importance of the role of the Doula in the overall health of the community at large can not be underscored.

There are several main differences between the Ceremonial Doula Immersion and other Doula programs.  This is not a certified program.  This is actually not a program at all.  This is an initiation into Feminine Lifeways.  It is completely experiential and deeply rooted in specific ceremonial practices oriented towards awakening this archetypal aspect of our nature as women.  One will leave here embodied, having activated and integrated the innate and sacred wisdom of what it means to be a birth keeper.

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  • An empowered and embodied understanding of what it means to be a Ceremonial Doula and Birthkeeper.

  • The knowledge and confidence to deeply nurture and support women physically, emotionally and spiritually during soul transitions such as pregnancy, birth and postpartum.

  • Cognizance of the different models of care available and how to support individual choice in birthing.

  • Acute awareness of the holy transition from Maiden to Mother and the means to hold space, honor and celebrate this with women.

  • Keys to the map of the Feminine Universe.  Anatomy and Physiology including fertility charting, conception and reproductive cycles, hormonal fluctuations, pregnancy processes, the stages of birth, cardinal fetal movements, lactogenesis and more.

  • Nutritional and herbal self care strategies and hands on healing techniques for the different phases of the feminine life cycle.

  • Nonviolent communication techniques, cultural sensitivity and increased empathy.

  • Perspectives on how Ayurvedic Medicine supports pregnancy, birth and postpartum.

  • A experiential knowledge of what it means to be a conscious caregiver in your community.

  • A deeper sense of your unique scope of power and potential as a woman.

  • Quality time spent in the nourishing company of women and elders.

  • Personal insight, healing and integration from the ceremonial work experienced.

  • Understanding of the importance of ceremony to mark momentous occasions in the life cycle and how to facilitate that work.

  • Rejuvenation and relaxation from immersion in the natural landscape.

  • Inspiration to return to your community ready to share practices, tools, rituals, stories, sadhanas and the ability to hold space for women.

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Ceremonial Doulaship Immersion

Daily discourses, practicums and personal insight invitations offered on a myriad of interrelated topics.

Birth keeper transmissions

Work closely with two elder birth keepers, one North American and one Amazonian who have a combined 75 years of embodied wisdom on this path.


3 expertly and femininely guided opportunities to explore what it means to truly show up for yourself.

Ceremonial work

Sweat Lodge, Sacred Cacao, Andean Despacho, Tibetan Smoke Ritual, Amazonian Saumerio, fire circles and water blessings.

Group Integration Work 

We will gather often and intimately.  Post ceremony integration facilitation and fire circles with open forum topics for deeper understanding of our role as women supporting other women.

Plant medicine healing 

Cleansing plant baths, enlivening flower baths, healing sitz baths, aromatherapy, flower essences and herbs for the Sacred Feminine.

Sonic Healing

Sound bath, song circles and chanting practices

Body work techniques 

Introductions to Ayurvedic acupressure and Amazonian postpartum massage

Movement therapy

Yoga and belly dance for the Feminine Moon phases including nongravid, pregnancy, labor and post partum stages of life.

Waterfall and river medicine

Excursions into the pristine matrix of Mother Jungle.


To accompany the live teachings and that can be taken home upon the completion of the retreat to serve as a future resource.

Self care product bundle

An assortment of exquisite aromatic botanical products specifically designed for this journey.


11 nights shared accommodations in our beautiful ecolodge hand built from local and sustainable materials and nestled in the healing embrace of the ethnobotanical gardens at Yacumaman Sanctuary

Delicious vegan meals

Prepared fresh daily using organic, seasonal nutrient-dense foods, foraged from or grown in the surrounding jungle. 


From Tarapoto airport to Yacumaman Sanctuary of Integral Shamanism.


Not Included

International and Domestic airline tickets

Airport taxes for domestic or international departures

Personal expenses such as purchases,  telephone, fax, laundry bills, etc.

Tips/gratuities for retreat help, car/van drivers, etc.

 The Setting

Yacumaman Sanctuary of Integral Shamanism is a glistening green jewel set upon a hillside overlooking the city of Tarapoto and next to the national forest, Cerro Escalera. Yacumaman is mandala of activity, study and contemplation: part ethnobotanical garden, part eco-village, part center for shamanic and vedic studies, part reforestation project as well as the base for Qori Inti Amazonian Herbals. It is the main hub for all our Integral Shamanism retreat programs. The Qori Inti apothecary, Jungle Lab, Rasa Casas, Shambhu Tambo our ecolodge, Hampi Yacu Wasi, our spa and the temple of Graha Shanti which is where we hold ceremony, are all located here. The temple of Graha Shanti is our interpretation of a maloca- a traditional Amazonian structure used for shamanic ceremonies. It is round with a vaulted palm roof that rises eighty feet vertically and highlights spectacular views of the surrounding jungle covered mountain range. There are planetary yantras set into the walls and a pair of cedar doors with a relief carving of the Sri Yantra. We use it for our sessions:  yoga, meditation and plant medicine. The Rasa Casas and Shambho Tambo are the beautiful, sustainable-living structures that compose our eco-village.  

Exploring the walking paths on the property, experiencing and connecting with the plants, trees, garden and wilderness ambiance, lends a feeling of being held by the land while going deep into  one’s personal process. The team of practitioners at Yacumaman work together within the thriving ambiance of the living landscape, utilizing its healing resources to craft the optimal context for powerful transformational individual and group work. We combine our diverse skills and lifetimes of training to forge an alchemical crucible wherein health, wellness, and wisdom are skillfully generated.

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Aubrey Bamdad’s body of work bridges the fields of Ayurveda, yoga and their corresponding Vedic technologies with traditional Amazonian medicine and the shamanic realms.  She is a mother, writer, teacher and visionary, as well as an Ayurvedic practitioner, yogini, and contemporary vegetalista with decades of immersive experience in these respective wisdom traditions.  She has founded and directs the Sacred Motherhood Blueprint, the Eleusinian Mystery Field School, Qori Inti Amazonian Herbals, for which she also formulates and creates their product lines and co-directs Yacumaman Sanctuary for Integral Shamanism with her husband Dionisio Santos.  Aubrey is a sought-after and well-respected teacher the world over.  Her approach to Integral Shamanism is completely unique to her and stems from her experiences, studies and the result of a life passionately and spontaneously dedicated to interfacing different esoteric systems.  Aubrey and her husband Dionisio birthed their beautiful daughter Nahal Devi, at home, in the water, under a full Amazonian moon.


Homebirth midwife, salt of the earth mama, herbalist, plant whisperer, and temple priestess are a few of the ways in which Sunshine Tressider expresses her essence. Sunshine has been practicing midwifery for over twenty years; facilitating the miracle of birth around the world from Haiti to Indonesia to Peru. She believes each family teaches a unique story about love and truth, and is an honored devotee to each and every sacred birth story she has experienced.  She incorporates massage and craniosacral therapy into her midwifery practice, which is located in a small rural community in Northern California. Sunshine is mother to two grown sons whom she birthed naturally on the land, and has lived off-grid in the Redwoods for over two decades. She considers the land, seasons, and moon cycles some of her greatest teachers. Sunshine offers sacred space to women during each new moon in her garden sanctuary, and is an ordained minister who has performed over 23 weddings.



Dona Judith Alva de Falcon is an elder Amazonian birth keeper who has attended thousands of home births over the course of half a century!  She is very excited to join us for two days during the Ceremonial Doulaship Immersion to share some of her wisdom and experience with us.  She is humble, open like a book and so willing to transmit her legacy to other women who also share her passion of conscious caregiving.  She will regale us with stories as well as her knowledge of folk techniques for pregnancy, birth and postpartum including massage and herbal medicine.

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March 16:  Arrival and transfer to Yacumaman Sanctuary.  Settle in.  Opening Circle.

March 20-21: We will celebrate the Vernal Equinox, full moon and Nowruz, the Persian New Year (Aubrey is of Iranian descent) together.

March 27:  Breakfast.  Closing CIrcle.  You can arrange your departure plans for later in the afternoon or you may decide to stay on a few more days, and bask in the radiance.

Sample Daily Rhythm

7:30AM:   Movement sessions integrating Belly dance or yoga

9:30 AM: Nourishing breakfast

10:30 AM: Ceremonial Doulaship discourse or practicum

1:00 PM:   Luscious lunch  

3:00 PM:  Afternoon activities may include more practicums, visiting and receiving healing work from local curanderas or venturing into Nature for play and rejuvenation!

6:00 PM: Rejuvenating dinner

7:00 PM:  Evening activities may include Ayahuasca sessions, fire circles, dance, sacred song ciphers or open forums on various related topics.

If you would like to book lodging before or after the retreat at Yacumaman Healing Sanctuary, please email ahead of time, as space is limited.  Extra nights of accommodation with breakfast included cost $33.

Once you have reserved your space we will send you confirmation and a prep and reading list.