Meet Don Ron
The Gringo Shaman
Don Ron Wheelock is widely known in Peru as The Gringo Shaman of the Amazon. A shaman is a person who, in tribal cultures, communicates with the spirit world. As intermediaries, shamans ask spirits to intercede in the lives of humans, healing them of illnesses, or granting favors…
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Karina's Artisan Shop
Don Ron supports the community by employing local people and buying local produce. The camp is maintained by Don Alberto, his wife Isabela and their two daughters. Ceremonies are performed solely by Don Ron. Ron’s partner, Karina Maria Diaz Parades, has a small shop at the camp that provides local artisans a place to display their crafts.
Don Ron’s sole goal in establishing El Purguero was his desire to offer a safe, supportive environment in which to heal the physical, emotional or spiritual needs of its guests. El Purguero is a retreat devoted to learning and appreciating plant medicines and a place to experience the true nature of reality and explore all our potential to live a meaningful life.
It's the morning after & we're all still here, which is wonderful. I hear birds more clearly this morning, I can't remember how they sounded yesterday, I can only hear what they say now. The trees seem more alive & there's calmness in the air. I don't know exactly what happened I only know that it has.
I have only drunk ayahuasca 4 times, all here at El Purguero, with Ron. I've had lots of confusing messages & images & little makes sense at this time. That's ok, I've changed, I don't know how there seems no rhyme or reason, I just have. I've often wondered whether the thoughts I have while journeying are mine or messages from mother ayahuasca using my voice & my experience in order to communicate in a way I can understand. I don't think it matters, it's the results that count & I feel like a new person.
This day is as predicted, the first day of a new dawn. A new beginning for us all, and for me a time to "be the change I wish to see in the world". Love, gratitude and utmost respect to Ron, Tracie & Mark for being such wonderful hosts & beautiful people.
A special thanks to Ron who is wonderful, kind, sensitive, attentive, advanced soul. Thank you to all the staff who have been amazing and looked after us magnificently.
To you all "I love you"
I came to Peru 10 years ago & have wanted to come back ever since, but this time to the jungle. When this opportunity came up to visit the jungle and drink ayahuasca with Don Ron and it being the end of the Mayan calendar, I knew I had to be here.
The place has surpassed my expectations. The setting is divine, as is the food, but what makes it so special is the beauty and generosity of all the staff. Special thanks to Tracie & Mark for their dedication above & beyond the call of duty, and for shopping for us!
The ceremonies have been amazing and I have experienced things here and had teachings and visions that I have never had before in more than 10 ceremonies elsewhere, and for this I am deeply grateful to all who sang the extraordinary icaro's, to Don Ron for holding space so safely & for all the channeling - in fact, all who took part...Aho!Chris Gooch
I've dreamt of this day for a very long time, and dreamt also of coming here to receive healing from Ron. I know several people who have come to him over the years and heard all about their life changing experiences with this medicine of Ron's, and Ron's amazing strength and healing abilities. I have now had 3 ceremonies with the master shaman, Ron Wheelock, and have witnessed first hand his other-worldly power and courage. Every ceremony has been completely unique, and I can say with my hand on my heart, that these last 10 days have changed my life forever. My prayers have been answered. It's now my intention to return in 10 days or so to start the dieta. Mother ayahuasca has accepted me and I've been blessed with incredible visions and very deep healing.
I feel completely at home here. Everyone has been amazing - all members of the familia, and the staff - delicious and excellent food by the way. I have had the honor of drinking this sacred medicine with persons of commendable strength and I thank everyone.
Intense journeys were had but Ron always brought us back into the light. To Ron, Tracie, Mark, Medado I wish love and respect and I shall see you again soon.
P.S. Breathtaking icaro's!!Iwan, Wales, Artist
Words are inadequate to describe the profound transformation I have experienced in this magical place, El Purguero. Ron is the most amazing human being/magician that I have ever had the privilege to meet. Mark & Tracie's strength and patience and support are invaluable, along with the staff, children & dogs (!) making this Workshop one of the most joyous ( though incredibly difficult) places on earth.
I love you all, and always will....
Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
AnnieAnnie Geary, UK, Artist
If I leave aside the work in the maloca; the food was meant to be basic, it wasn't, it was wonderful, delicious, nutritious, served by wonderful attentive staff who reflected the gentle loving nature of all who worked here. They are attentive, loving and practical.
The surroundings are intensely beautiful, the nature walks informative and the accommodation extremely comfortable and clean.
There is nothing about the experience that could be improved upon, including the weather. Thank you for all that you are and all that you do and that includes las ninas!Tara, UK, Artist
I faced my demons head on! I felt my fear & my families fear! I put myself back together again! The way mother aya intended. I hope I never have to go through this journey again, but I'm glad I did it. I felt so supported by Ron, Tracie, Mark & all the staff.
Keep on keeping on
Amen.Rachel Warby, UK, Hairdresser
This experience has changed my life.
Never before have I experienced such insight & knowledge, or felt the love and power of the medicine.
Each journey has re-forged my soul in fire I am so much stronger and more powerful now. I know this experience will change how I do my healing work.
Nothing will ever be the same again.
Thank you El Purguero for the best experience of my life. Lots of love. GarethGareth Hughes, UK, Healer
Just spent two fantastic weeks at El Purguero. This was my third trip to the jungle around Iquitos to work with plant medicines, and it was the best so far. I've had the pleasure of being hosted by Tracie Thornberry and her brother Mark before. First and foremost, they are just fine human beings. It doesn't take long to see that for them, it's about healing, not making money. Tracie is also a highly skilled counselor who saw me through some very challenging episodes during my first visit to Peru. She inevitably gives me a lot to think about, and my time with the medicine is always richer because of this. New to me this time was the honor of sitting in ceremony with Ron Wheelock. He is both a kind man and a shaman of the highest order. He pours 100% of his energy into every ceremony, and this creates a VERY powerful experience. I said, only half joking, that the name of the center should be changed from "El Purguero" to "Thank You". But then, "El Purgeuro" does have a nice ring...Jason, U.S.A., Healer
I had tried several rehabs to help me with my heroin and crack addiction, and although I had managed to stay clean for a limited time after each I was always plagued by depression, anxiety, cravings, and insomnia. The detox at El Purguero was rough but after about 3 weeks I began to feel much better. I began sleeping the best I have in my adult life. The dietas were rough, but they seemed to help my body strip out all the toxins. The best thing of all was the ayahuasca. Through that I was able to visit my past (including a past life in one vision) and drop resentments I had held on to, forgive myself, and rediscover a lust for life I hadn't know for many years. It feels like I was able to rewire my brain and reconnect with spirit. These sessions are some of the most profound and beautiful experiences I have ever known.
5 months on from my detox (at the time of writing) and I am doing well. Not plagued by daily cravings, crippling anxiety, sleepless nights, depression as I would normally be in the past. This is what I wanted for over a decade and I was beginning to think I would never achieve it. No one can possibly know how much it means to me to be free of these addictions.
Thanks so much for helping me to get myself back!
Much love and respect, RichRich, U.K., Healer
Dane A. Vemb, Toronto, March 7, 2014 (February workshop) LOVE!! Coming back to El Purguero in less than six months is a true testament of the medicinal benefits of Ayahuasca. I came back this time with my daughter Stephanie, because of what she saw and heard from my first visit to Iquitos. She too is a dedicated Vipassana practitioner and at the tender age of 25 … she has now been given all the tools she needs to succeed in this ever-changing place I like to refer to as Mother Earth. I was real proud of her to take the steps she needed in life when she first went on a ten day Vipassana sit and then to go back within the year to be a server on another ten day. She felt that real change had to come from within and she has applied the teachings well. Coming to the jungle with me showed such braveness and strength and has given her another level of capability. Raising her on my own, we had sadly, become disconnected. After the first ceremony, as we sat on the clay floor side by side … we felt with 100% certainty that not only did we reconnect, we know that we will stay connected … what an incredibly beautiful experience!! Ayahuasca takes one to another echelon of healing. I often heard consuming ayahuasca is like a reset button for the mind. Ayahuasca doesn’t erase memories, but it gives one the insight to look at your life honestly/objectively and provides us with the tools to evolve properly here on Mother Earth. When Stephanie said, “Dad, I feel brand new” and “I feel cleansed” after our workshop; I knew she had received these teachings of ayahuasca. Since being back here in Toronto she has applied those teachings properly and is truly focused on evolving into the best Stephanie she can possibly be. Such a proud Dad I am. I am so grateful to have come into contact with this wonderful medicinal plant. As stated in my first testimony, I really believe in the marriage between Vipassana meditation and the spirit vine ayahuasca; both continue to teach and heal my mind. I truly feel a profound connection to Mother Earth and I’m excited for the future of mankind … because we are in an age of compassion and love. Ron Wheelock you’re a good man and wonderful healer. I thank you again for your kindness, friendship, knowledge and love. Dane A. Vemb, Toronto, August 7, 2014 (July workshop) LOVE!!Dane, CA, Healer