Kanamari Sacred Force Rapé | Capirona & Cumala | Calycophyllum spruceanum & Virola theiodora | #28
Kanamari Sacred Force Rapé is a special mix of Mulateiro ash (Calycophyllum spruceanum), the mysterious plant Virola theiodora and Nicotiana rustica. Kanamari Sacred Force Rapé is made mainly for celebrations where singing and dancing are important. When used before sleeping it can give lucid dreams. Locals recommend using it gently and in small quantities.
The Mulateiro tree also known as Capirona is deeply ingrained in native culture. Its bark is used as an admixture in Ayahuasca rituals and also in many different remedies in folk medicine.
Furthermore, Virola theiodora tree has been widely used as a source of snuff among indigenous tribes in the Amazonas from time immemorial. This plant which contains important tryptamines belongs to the Myristiceae family and is closely related to nutmeg.
The Kanamari Tribe
There are currently an estimated 2,800 Kanamari Indians in the state of Amazonas in Brazil. The Kanamari people speak a language from the Katukinan family and possess a rich ritual heritage that has lasted for generations. They live isolated in the Amazon jungle, away from the influences of settlers. They refer to themselves as Canamari or Tukuna, which translates into people. They are well known for their natural healing methods, as well as for the facial tattoos of the older generations. The Kanamari people believe they were created by Tamakori, who first created them and then later created the whites.
The community we work with belongs to a small group of only 60 Kanamaris who live in the community Umariaçú in the upper part of the Itaquaí river.
Who makes the Kanamari Sacred Force Rapé?
Raimunda Kanamari is 70 years old. She is one of the few elder women that keeps the tradition of preparing rapé. Traditionally, snuffs are used during ceremonies, however, certain blends are used for other activities like hunting or when someone is sick. Raimunda knows many recipes and ways to prepare special combinations for different occasions. She learned from her tribe elders and from neighboring groups like the Tanimuka.
She combines her work cultivating food for her family, with gathering healing plants and preparing remedies. Every 3 months she travels downstream the Yavari river to reach the Brazilian city of Atalaya where she exchanges her remedies for salt, matches, pots, and other products that are not available in the jungle. Her weekly visit is always highly anticipated.
What is Rapé?
Rapé, pronounced ‘ha-pey’ in Portuguese, is a traditional snuff used by various indigenous tribes of South America. Predominantly tribal people from Brazil and Peru. Rapé blends contain a ground mixture of plants, tree bark, seeds, and ash. The fine powder is blown into each nostril through a bone or bamboo pipe called a ‘Tepi’ or ‘Kuripe’. The Tepi applicator is a long blow pipe that connects the nostril of the receiver to the mouth of the person that administers the snuff. The Kuripe is for self-application. The V-shaped applicator connects the nostril to the mouth allowing the snuff to be self-blown into the nose.
Each tribe has its own rapé formula and usually, it is women who gather the ingredients. The selection, mixture, and grinding process are regarded as a ritual only to be performed by a reputable healer. The snuff is typically made in small batches according to the specific needs of the person being treated or the ceremony’s occasion.
The use of Rapé aims to restore our connection to nature and a sense of grounding. It clears mental fog and confusion eliminating negative thought patterns. These powerful snuffs bring about physical and spiritual wellness.
Step by step guide to using Rapé.
What is Rapé – Waking Herbs blog