Yucuna Rapé | Harvest celebration | Colombia | #127
This Yucuna rapé is part of our Master Rapé Collection. This collection is a number of rapés carefully selected by Waking Herbs. We have several rapé masters that make unique, and exclusive blends. This specific mix is from Colombia where our dear friend Jairo has visited several indigenous tribes in search for the best blends.
Our Yucuna Harvest Celebration Rapé is prepared and mixed with Mapacho , Kapok tree root, Yarumo (cecropia sp.) and a sacred ingredient from the Payé tradition. It is used during the community harvest seasons and in some rituals of the chontaduro (peach palm) festivities.
To prepare special blends, a large quantity of tobacco is needed. The community leader or Payé explores the surrounding territory in search of the best leaves that a good preparation requires. This Yukuna rapé is popular among the elderly and is very common for each one to carry it on themselves and share it when meeting with friends as a sign of closeness and life celebration.
The Yucuna indigenous community is located on the Mirití Paraná river banks in Colombia. Yucuna people have seen themselves as people of the inside, their mythology is much more oriented to the forest as a whole, unlike neighboring tribes that focus on specific animals like the anaconda.
For the Yukuna, the cosmos is made of many concentric circles which are united by air, water, smoke and light. Cosmic rivers are also present where the sun and the moon navigate in their boats. (M. Hildebrand and E. Reichel, 1987)
What is Rapé?
Rapé, pronounced ‘ha-pey’, is a traditional snuff used by various indigenous tribes of South America, predominantly from the tribal people of Brazil and Perú. The finely ground powder is blown into each nostril through a bone or bamboo pipe called a ‘Tepi’. Each tribe has its own formula and is ceremoniously prepared by specific members of the tribe. Traditional Rapés contain a blend of finely ground plants, tree barks, seeds, and ash. Among the different types of ashes used, the most common come from tsunu, Murici, Yarumo and Inga native trees.
Connecting to the Spirit of Nature
In some tribes, it is women who gather the ingredients and make Rapé while in others it is prepared by the tribe reputable healer. The snuff is typically made in small batches according to specific needs of the person being treated or the ceremony’s purpose . These snuffs are very powerful, profoundly healing and cleansing on many levels. The use of Rapé aims to connect the user to the spirit of nature while invoking power to bring about physical and spiritual healing.
Tepi or Kuripe
Traditionally, Rapé is administered through either the ‘Tepi’ or ‘Kuripe’. The Tepi applicator is used when one person administers the snuff and another receives it. The Tepi is a long blow pipe that connects the nostril of the receiver with the mouth of the blower, who then blows the rapé into the nose of the receiver. The Kuripe is for self-application. The V-shaped applicator connects the nostril to the mouth blowing the snuff into the nose.
Opening the body’s Energy Flow
In general, the tribes believe Rapé facilitates the opening and clearing of the body’s energy channels known as ‘chakras’ which facilitate a sense of grounding and connection to mother earth. Some think it frees physical, mental, emotional and spiritual bodies from disease. It is also said that using Rapé opens what is called the third-eye chakra, can decalcify the pineal gland, and, clears mental fog and confusion. It is also said it stops negative thought patterns, but it is mainly used to reconnect us to our breath and expand our spiritual awareness.