2019 – The Third World Ayahuasca Conference, Girona, Spain
After two successful international conferences in 2014 (Spain) and 2016 (Brazil), the third global symposium on ayahuasca brought together 1,400 people from a wide range of cultural backgrounds, disciplines, and traditions to Girona, Spain.
The three-day long 2019 World Ayahuasca Conference featured presentations, discussions, an art exhibit, and declarations of ayahuasca’s possible role in the future.
Presenters included dozens of indigenous healers from different Amazonian groups, and from across the globe: legal experts, musicians, philosophers, writers, psychotherapists, anthropologists, filmmakers, political scientists, historians, entrepreneurs, agronomists, nature conservationists, independent researchers, and
Speakers also included notable pioneers of psychedelic anthropology and medicine—Wade Davis and Claudio Naranjo, as well as other eminent experts, such as Luis Eduardo Luna, the anthropologist who first described the idea of “plant teachers”; Dennis McKenna who was a part of the groundbreaking MAOI study which learned how the ayahuasca vine allows the DMT a passage through the gut to the blood; Jeremy Narby whose visionary book The Cosmic Serpent popularized ayahuasca since the late 1990s; plus Sir Ghillean Prance, Ede Frecska, Giorgio Samorini, and others.
Key matters discussed at the event included: ayahuasca’s therapeutic potential, the challenges of integrating shamanic experiences, the relationship between science and shamanism and between shamanism and modernity, the impact and sustainability of ayahuasca tourism, the implications of ayahuasca’s legal regulations, the role ayahuasca plays in communities, societies, and the planet.
The conference, fittingly, welcomed the European debut of the ESPD50 book collaboration. This publication is one of the second edition of the first ever multidisciplinary psychedelic studies conference, entitled Ethnopharmacologic Search for Psychoactive Drugs Conference held in 1967. Like the original book that came from the symposium, the new edition launched in Girona depicts findings in “ethnopharmacology” (which is a fancy way of saying the study of the relationship between psychoactive substances and humans).
The attendees of the World Ayahuasca Conference 2019 also humbly witnessed the great Claudio Naranjo’s final words to the public. Kahpi editor Eric Swenson, reflecting on his time at the conference put it like this: “The most stirring experience I had, however, was the privilege of hearing Claudio Naranjo’s last public words. He was to me and many others a hero of almost mythic proportions, a brilliant therapist, an inspiring writer, an exemplary human being. His talk was all the more poignant because he announced that it would probably be his last. And it was; he died less than six weeks later.” You can read and watch Naranjo’s conference presentation Ayahuasca and the problems of the world here.
The conference presentations and other videos of the event are available here at the ICEERS YouTube Channel.
Here is a short overview of the event:
ICEERS YouTube Channel