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Open Your Mind: Experiencing Indigenous Jungle Medicine with BBC Travel Presenter Mike Corey

Follow BBC travel presenter and You Tube star Mike Corey into the depths of the Brazilian Amazon to experience Ayahuasca, Kambo and other mind-altering indigenous plant medicines.

This is not your average psychedelic tourist experience.

Mike travels to a traditional village in remote part of the jungle where foreigners have never been before. There, in the thatched roof long house, he gathers by the firelight with a group of elders as the shaman passes around eagle bones filled Rapé powder, burns holes in his skin to rub in poisonous frog venom and gives him shots of ayahuasca as they chant into the night.

This is more than just travel. This is adventure of the brain as well as the body - and let’s just say (pun intended) it’s quite trip.

The War on Fear

But Mike’s not looking for a simple high. Mike is on a war against fear. He wants us to challenge our preconceptions in the same way he challenges himself.

He’d never done drugs before. And though nothing he took was illegal, he was scared to try.

That’s the point. Jungle medicine may seem strange to us, but in the Amazon it’s been practiced for thousands of years and traditional practitioners claim healing benefits that modern medicine cannot provide. To be a true explorer, Mike says, you must try new things, things you’re scared of, things that make you grow. He should know – he’s made a career out of doing the kind of crazy things that would send most sane people running.

So he set off into the jungle in search of answers, in search of authentic cultural understanding. He set off to conquer his fears. What he found was something inspiring, at times painful, but enlightening too and it altered his view of the world forever.

Highlights include:

· Taking ayahuasca with a shaman in Peru

· Experiencing two of the most intense indigenous ceremonies in the world: Rapé, a powder which is shot like a blow dart into your nose, and Kambo a frog venom which is burnt into your skin.

· Travelling to a remote village deep in the jungle where tourists had never gone before.

· Hearing about Mike’s other crazy adventures including hopping iron ore trains across the Sahara, taking part in an exploding hammer festival in Mexico and drinking blood straight from a cow with the Masai in Tanzania (for real)

· Being inspired by Mike’s message of turning your fears into allies and how that can be a catalyst for personal growth

· Learning about traditional plant medicine, which has been practiced in the Amazon for thousands of years.

Who’s the Guest?

Mike Corey is a BBC Travel Presenter and adventure travel filmmaker. His You Tube channel is Fearless and Far where he shares videos of his crazy adventures. They are professional, exciting and will make you think about the world in a new light. Check it out:

You can also follow him on twitter, Instagram and facebook: @fearlessandfar … and his website is



Thank you to The Great Courses Plus for sponsoring this episode. Head over to get a free month trail with unlimited streaming of 1000s of videos and audio … it’s a great way to support the show!

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