Huachuma - San Pedro
What is ?
Trichocereus Pachanoi, is a columnar cactus native to the Andean mountains of Peru, and Ecuador. Some of the indigenous names for San Pedro are: huachuma, chuma, and wachuma. It is one of the four most sacred plants of Peru, along with Tobacco, Ayahuasca and Coca.
The shamanic used had been found back in time in different cultures inside of Peru until 1500 B.C , when the spanish came to conquer the Incas ,several years later, in the Peruvian colonial time, the people started to use the name of San Pedro, because its a plant that can open for you the doors to the heaven. Just like San Pedro from the bible text.
The natives and Shamans typically prepare the San Pedro by slicing and then boiling pieces of the stem for a few hours; afterwards the liquid that is left is taken orally. The cacti is said to be bitter, but not to unbearable however. San Pedro can also be taken from a powder that is made from drying out the cactus.
KINDS OF SAN PEDRO
There are several kinds of san pedro cactus, and I won't name it because that's a classification that scientists loves to do. What its important for us is that, in the shamanic tradion exist a classification :
1. The female and male san pedro. The first ones has not many spines around it, its the opposite to the male san pedro that has a lot of spines, wich is stronger and it's the one the shamans or curanderos likes more.
2. The lines : The cactus shows around it, a numbers of lines, or columns, the number of lines will also indicate the power of the cactus. Shamans prefer to use cactus with more than 4 lines. San pedro with 4 lines are use for exorcisms.