Traditionally, in the Andes, a despacho ceremony is performed (individually or communally) after each earth cycle to renew and re-imprint the powers of nature on our luminous body, to connect with the Universe and accomplish perfect ayni – not for us personally, but for the wellbeing of our “Ayllu” or group. A despacho brings the shaman into harmonious relationship with Heaven and Earth, aligning the three worlds of the Uhupacha, Kaypacha, Hanqpacha and the archetypical organizing principles of the Universe. Each item of offering represents a prayer and a gift of power that sparks the momentum for energy shifts and healing.
The steps to create your own despacho are simple:
Begin with a large piece of white or colored paper. This will be the “wrapping” for your offering – think of it as a present. Flip chart paper or non-foil wrapping paper works well.
Fold the paper into thirds one way and then thirds the other way so you have nine squares.
Working within the center square, you begin to layer the burnable objects that have been informed with your breath, so the energetic essence of your prayers is within each one.
A suggested list of contents, order and their meaning is below; however, there really are no rules. Create your prayer bundle in a way that is meaningful to you. Once you have filled the despacho with your prayers and vision for yourself and the Earth, fold the bundle into the shape of a gift; left to right, right to left; then bottom up and top down. Tie it with a white cord and add one “Qintu” (an organized stack fashioned with three leaves from a native tree, informed with a prayer) tucked into the yarn for any “forgotten prayers.”