Who Are The Shipibo?
When Shamans Market was born out of a labor of love and service in 1990s, we began learning from wisdom keepers of various earth-honoring traditions, mostly in the Americas. We traveled extensively throughout Peru and made many meaningful heart connections with the people of that country. We continue to foster these relationships and connections today.
Many of the products we import support indigenous people, providing income and helping them maintain their ancient wisdom and culture. The Shipibo are one of these groups. We support their artistic community endeavors and that association squares exactly with our mission as a company.
Living in the Amazon Basin in Peru, the Shipibo are a shamanic people, deeply influenced by the power of plants, animals and natural world. Their culture, originating along one of the major tributaries of the Amazon River, is well known for shamanism and plant medicine. Among the indigenous cultures there, the Shipibo are one of the few cultural groups that have managed to maintain their language, art and mystical plant medicine ways, mostly away from the influence of the Spanish conquistadores. Because of our ongoing relationship with Shipibo practitioners and artisans, we are able to expand our knowledge and practice.
These icaro song patterns are incorporated either by painting or embroidery on their clothing, jewelry, pottery, rattles and other handiwork and even sometimes painted on their bodies. Some of their hand embroidered cotton clothing, bags and healing cloths, and beaded necklaces and bracelets feature original and intricate designs in striking colors and typically represent a natural or supernatural theme. The cloth is hand woven by Shipibo women, and due to the elaborate designs, can take weeks to create.
Ayahuasca is an Amazonian plant medicine that has been used for centuries, possibly thousands of years, by indigenous ayahuasca shaman across the upper Amazon throughout Peru, Colombia, Ecuador and Brazil. According to The Temple of the Way of the Light, a retreat center based in Peru, “the Shipibo tribe seems to have a particularly strong relationship with ayahuasca and many consider the Shipibo to be the most highly skilled ayahuasca healers in the Peruvian Amazon. The use of Shipibo imagery related to ayahuasca is widespread and the Shipibo patterns of icaro are synonymous with ayahuasca and its practice throughout Peru.”
Panter Pablo Amaringo is known for his ayahuasca inspired visionary paintings. In The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo he is called “a master communicator of the ayahuasca experience, where snakes, jaguars, subterranean beings, celestial palaces, aliens, and spacecraft all converge, … Amaringo’s art presents a doorway to the transcendent worlds of ayahuasca intended for contemplation, meditation, and inspiration”
For their ancient wisdom and knowledge of plants, to their skillful and intricate artwork, for their magical ears which can receive song patterns and for their ability to musically recreate them on a variety of surfaces using different media, to their translation of ayahuasca visions into their art, we love, value, respect and support this tribe of native people of the Amazon rainforest.