Yucuna rapé | Defense Booster Matico & Jequitebá | Piper sp.+ Cariniana sp.| #03
This product was made using Matico (Piper aduncum), and the ashes of Jequitibá (Cariniana micrantha), both medicinal plants.
Throughout the Amazon, many of the Indian tribes use Matico leaves as an antiseptic quick wound healer that stops bleeding and prevents infections. Matico is a common ingredient for tonic and aromatic rapés. Local people have experienced its special powers to boost the immune system. Yucuna healers boil the very aromatic leaves of Matico to prepare a drink that is said to invigorate the elderly (Schultes 1993, 135*). Dried Leaves of Piper sp. known as masho-hara or yauardi-hena are used as ritual snuffs.
Jequitebá, the second ingredient of this wonderful blend comes from the bark of a very tall tree which is known for its anti-inflammatory and disinfectant properties which decongest respiratory airways.
Our friend William, who is familiar with more than 78 sacred plants for preparing different types of rapés, says he makes this rapé especially for teaching Yacuna medicine to the “White man”. He is a Yacuna healer who has been making rapé all his life in his community with the help of his family.
Yucuna people, also known as Yukuna, Jukuna, Hurumi, Imike, Kameheya, or Piyoti, speak a dialect that belongs to the Arawak language family. They currently live dispersed on high terraces on the banks of the lower half of the Mirití-Paraná and Caquetá rivers near the village of La Pedrera in Colombia, South America. Their current population is about a thousand individuals. Pottery found from archeological sites speaks of their existence since the fifth-century a.d.
Traditionally, Yucuna tribes use rapé during ‘la ceremonia de la palabra’, or ‘word-ceremony’. During these gatherings that usually take place in the Maloca, a communal roundhouse, the elders meet all night to discuss important spiritual and community matters. Each community has its own preferred ingredient when going through traditional recitations. It is believed that the Yucuna people received rapé at the beginning of time as a gift from the Gods.
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.