I was first introduced to a Peruvian despacho ceremony at an afterlife conference a few years ago. That one was a beautiful and moving ritual that honored the dead, and I’ve done several since, including one to honor my friend who died in 2015.
Despacho ceremonies ground us, connect us with the spirit and energy of nature. They assume that the universe is benign and problems arise when we are out of balance with it.
So when I felt my energy out of balance and even spiraling out of control as a result of the negative energies in the world today, I spoke with a shaman friend. Who managed to find a way to come through Santa Fe last week to do an ayni despacho ceremony at our rental house.
An ayni despacho puts us in right relationship with the world: right thinking, right acting, right loving. The despacho is an offering we make to the spirits and the contents of the offering depend on the purpose of that particular ceremony. I am by no means an expert, but want to give you a little bit of the flavor of the ceremony.
We laid out a sheet of purple tissue and then, one by one, placed symbolic objects: sugar meant to honor the sweetness of life, candles to light the way, chocolate representing life’s richness, beans that stood for the masculine and feminine and other things that honored the flora and fauna, the creatures that swim, the county of the earth and more.
As we put the offering together, Shaman Dan called upon the spirits of the earth, the water and Pachamama (the earth mother of the Andean people who sustains life on earth). This is soul level work, and I felt it.
We each blew our prayers and intentions into the despacho. Shaman Dan used carnations to sprinkle white and red wine onto the despacho as offerings to the spirits.
It was a beautiful, colorful and meaningful package that held all our intentions. I felt the love we had for our friends who had come this way to support me, and I could feel the love that imbued their actions and this lovely ceremony.
After the despacho was neatly bundled, we prepared it for the fire ceremony. We burned the despacho to help us let go of what no longer serves us in our life’s journey. For me, the ceremony helped me release some of the negative energy that’s all around us today and that was making me anxious.
Despachos can also be used to help release blockages in relationships, jobs, financial issues, career and to let go of self-sabotaging patterns. The ceremony can be performed in a group or by yourself.
There are many ways to honor life (and death) in our own culture. I hope you will take a look at the helpful grief products offered at A Healing Spirit. I also offer several after-death communication services that you might want to learn more about, including past life and spiritual regression and trance channeling. Visit A Healing Spirit any time.