- "After 4 long ceremonies with Brown at The Avatar Centre, given the weight of all I had to work through, I can easily say that my journey was ever-so enhanced by the loving and compassionate, power and insightful presence that Brown provided. He empowered me in the realization that this was my journey, and he was not here to heal me or to change me, but to support me in loving myself enough, to realize that I was not tainted or tarnished, and that my traumas had not branded me a damaged person, but that I was worthy, and that all along, through all of life's challenges, I was still and always have been a symbol of beauty at the core of my essence, and that my own perfection comes out of realizing the natural flow of all I have experienced, and that it has all been here to strengthen me for the work my soul has been brought here to do. The support that Brown provided, allowed me to do my own work, and the space that he held, reminded me that even the work of confronting my own demons and traumas, and believe me there were many, was something sacred and even could be seen as beautiful, and a vital process in my journey to becoming the woman I want to be. The ayahuasca was incredibly strong for me, but not too strong for me to handle. The medicine helped me to see how strong I am really am, and that vulnerablility is not weakness, but actually a strength too, which allows me to fill with the love of the universe. During the hardest times in the ceremony, Brown seemed to be tuned in to my experience, knowing just what songs to sing to ease my mind, soothe my heart, and awaken my soul, bringing me strength to keep moving forward. Some think that a shaman should be of certain ancestral lineage, but experiencing the power and presence of an elder that Brown carried, helped me to see that healing souls come in all forms, in all ethnic and social backgrounds and colors of skin. These things are just forms that the vessel takes, and none of these are a testament of a souls work or power or purpose. The power a soul carries is something that can be felt, and perhaps if one is gifted enough to see oras and spirits around a person, then it too may be seen, but for me...it is a feeling and something that seems to activate a kind of higher knowing within myself. This higher knowing stated to me even before sitting in ceremony with Brown, that I could trust him...but more than him, I could trust his spirit. After sitting in ceremony with him, and receiving the nurturence of his flower baths, guided meditations, powerfully transcendent icaros and sacred spaceholding in ceremony, I am incredibly grateful and in awe to say that he may be the first man I've ever been able to fully trust in life, helping me to finally turn the page on some things. I have been with much feeling of burden, carrying with me for decades. If you are looking to ayahuasca, and seeking someone you can trust to help you through your journey, I can ever so highly recommend Brown or William Koroskenyi as some know him to take good care of you through the process. Even though it was a big journey for me, I can say with tremendous faith, that I will certainly be back, and will certainly bring others with me the next time I return, so that I may share this beautiful medicine with those I love." - Lilly 2016
- "Nearly two years ago, my husband Matt and I (though we were not married then) had decided we wanted to welcome a child into our lives together. We had only been together for nine months, but being 35 and 45 respectively at the time, that was all was needed to know that it was the right time and that we wanted this with each other. This period, for me, was also marked with some darker shadows. Around the same time that we started trying to get pregnant, a long-time friend of mine had committed suicide. One day he woke up and told his wife, another friend of mine, that he was going out to buy clothes, and instead went and bought a gun and drove 50 miles outside of the city and shot himself. The other shadow was that a different friend, also of many years, had been diagnosed 9 months before with stage four rectal cancer and had been undergoing very difficult and aggressive treatments, and at the time (she has had clear PET scans for over six months now), did not look like she would very likely survive. So, these were the themes that were surrounding me on the day when I first met Brown. Matt and I were both eager to participate in the ceremony that he was leading in October, 2015,a few months after we had begun trying for a baby. Matt had met Brown previously as a host for one of his ceremonies that was held in our house about ten months before, and he had very good things to say about it. That was a few weeks before we had started dating, so I wasn’t around for it, but I trusted Matt’s opinion. I was not new to ceremony, though it had been over a year since I had participated in one and I was looking forward to working with someone other than the person I had been attending ceremony with before. Matt and I picked Brown up, and we all drove to the home of the person who was the host this time. Immediately after meeting him, I felt a very deep connection to Brown, something that I couldn’t quite place, but he felt familiar and his energy comforting. During the ride, Brown shared with us the story of how he came to Peru, met his partner and saw a vision of his son, and came to become an Ayahuasquero and create his center. Until I heard the details of how he came to his new life, a part of me had some hesitation about how “authentic” a white, middle-class man from Pittsburgh moving to Peru could be as a shaman. As a person who strives for social justice, I am wary of appropriation of other cultures for financial gain. However, I knew after having a chance to talk to him that he was as genuine as I could have hoped for, and I could see almost immediately how open his heart was and how much he belonged in this role. Nothing of my experience of participating in his ceremonies or getting to know him has given me any other feelings than these. Plant spirits, as it were, could probably care less about which culture someone comes from. More importantly, what matters is the content of a person’s heart and their willingness to learn and grow and to be a vessel to facilitate the experiences that other people need. During the initial part of the ceremony, Brown made mention that he sensed death and cancer as a big issue in the room. This had, of course, resonated with me, so when he invited us to each come individually to talk with him privately, I had assumed that these issues were part of what the ceremony was going to be about for me. When I started talking to him about it, though, it became clear that these were not the main issues for me. What started to become evident is that issues surrounding pregnancy were. Brown asked me if I had had any abortions, and as I started to talk about the two that I had experienced, I could feel the dense entanglement of congested energy around my first and second chakras and the emotions that were stuck in my chest and in my throat. I realized that I was still living with a great deal of fears and guilt associated with my past experiences with pregnancy. During the main part of the ceremony, between the first and second offerings of the brew, Brown had been inviting people who felt the urge or desire to be worked with directly into the center of the circle onto a yoga mat that had been placed for that purpose. At a point when I saw an opening, I felt compelled to lay down to have Brown work with me. As I lay there with my eyes closed, I could hear Brown singing and chanting and moving over me with feathers. As he was working, I could feel rushes of very intense energy moving through me, emerging out of my uterus and being channeled out through my crown. Once he finished, I remember feeling a sense of hollowness in my hips that I hadn’t felt in a long time, with my awareness able to travel through in a way that it had not anytime I could think of in years. At some point after this experience a second dose of brew was offered and I felt compelled to drink more medicine. As I was drinking, I had a vision of the grandmother spirit instructing me to paint the walls of my uterus with the brew and so I imagined myself doing this. It was just after this that I had a vision of myself pregnant and accompanying this vision I heard a voice say that his name would be Logan. It was surprising to me, because this was not a name that I had ever thought much of, or ever considered as a name for my child. When I was home, however, I looked up the meaning of the name and came across something that claimed its meaning to be “of or from the Hollows”. It suddenly seemed fitting since the release my blocked energy had given me a feeling of my hips being ‘hollow’. At the end of the ceremony, Brown closed by moving from person to person and sharing some words about what he saw for them, and as he approached me, laughing a beautiful laugh, he told me that he saw me as a pregnant and worry free and that he saw a child coming to Matt and I. About a week and a half later, with a few symptoms to encourage me, I took a pregnancy test and both my, and Brown’s vision were confirmed. Today, my son Logan is 10 months old." - Samantha Marino, 2017
- "I had been on a self healing path for several years. It was time to take my work to another level. This is when I started hearing about ayahuasca. I knew it was something I needed to do. I didn't pick the Avatar Centre off the bat. There is so much information out there and so many places to choose from it can be difficult to know what is best for you. I had planned on attending a larger center with a lot of reviews and testimonials. Until one day I saw an event pop up on my Facebook feed. There was a meet and greet in my city showcasing the Avatar Centre. I attended. Although I only talked with Brown briefly, a great feeling came over me. I knew this was where I needed to go for my journey.
Several months later I was getting on a plane, all by myself, flying to a country I had never been to, could barely speak the language, and had been told by multiple people that I was crazy for going. It was the freest I had felt in a very long time. I had reached a crossroads at many different levels in my life. I needed to go deeper in my own personal healing. I had suffered trauma when I was very young and it had left me closed off. I had just gotten out of an unhealthy relationship with my daughters mother. My work situation wasn't making me happy anymore. I was seeking answers and direction.
Brown met me at the airport in Iquitos. We ran some errands before getting on the speedboat for the hour ride to Tamshiyacu. Soon the big city was out of sight and I was on my way down the mighty Amazon. We arrived at Tamshiyacu and took a 20 minute moto kart ride into the jungle. Brown unlocked the gate to the centre. I was finally at my home for the next two weeks.
The Avatar Centre is on a several acre patch of land. The main lodge overlooks a lagoon and is surrounded by a garden of native plants that Brown had been planting himself. He took the time to introduce me to each of the plants. Explaining to me their medicinal uses, as well as giving me a history of the spirits of the plants. I was in awe of the range of uses that the plants had. There was a plant for any type of western medicine you could think of, ranging from controlling PMS to healing broken bones. It was from this garden that Brown would prepare a special brew of tea that I would drink each night. The brew brought me much direction in my dreams. He also prepared me plant baths that I would take each day before ceremony, picking plants to aid in my healing process.
After two short days of diet it was time for my first ayahuasca ceremony. I had not been nervous about taking the brew until a few hours before ceremony time. I was sitting nervously in the lodge awaiting ceremony time, when Brown's friend Alberto asked me how I was feeling. "Nervioso" I replied. He smiled and explained to me in Spanish that he had drank more than 300 times, and he was nervous each time he drank the brew. It was then that I could see him breathing deeply, I realized how much respect he had for the medicine, and the power that it possessed. I began to breathe deep also. My nerves calmed and I awaited ceremony time.
Shortly after dark it was time. It was only Brown, Alberto, and myself drinking this night. Brown did some rituals and was ready to serve the medicine. I was invited to drink first. He blew smoke into the cup, and filled it to the brim, smiling he gave it to me. I said a prayer into the medicine, holding my intentions I tipped the cup and swallowed the thick molasses tasting brew. I returned to my place in the ceremony room. Laid down on my mattress and began to wait. I couldn't help but think would the medicine work for me the first time, I had read much about people having to drink multiple times before they ever got a vision from the ayahuasca. Some time passed and then I could feel the medicine working in my stomach. Soon I could feel it take hold over my body, Brown recognized the energy changing in the room and began to play music. At the time I couldn't figure out if the music was coming from him, or if it was coming from the medicine, it flowed so well with the experience. It felt as if it was part of the ayahuasca itself. I began to receive visions and messages. My intention for the night had been answered.
We drank 4 more times over the course of the two weeks that I was at the centre. Each time the medicine answered my prayers, some lessons were harder to learn than others. Some were shown to me gently, some were a little bit harsh, but each was very important and exactly what I needed to get the lesson to stick. Brown also did a lot of work on me. I had been to several different healers, but I was very impressed with Brown's natural healing abilities. He was able to identify health issues, energetic blockages, begin the opening and healing of my heart center, as well as relate in a way that was easy to understand and accept the lessons that I was taking in during this time. I realized how dedicated he was to his craft, not just by dieting, or working with the medicine, but that he had a relationship with this jungle and all its beings, spirits, and plants. I couldn't have picked a better place to be or person to be with throughout this journey.
I was soon ready for my return home. Equipped with a "to do" list from the teachings of the ayahuasca, along with a great appreciation for nature in general. It is now a year later, and I have completed many of the items on my list, some are still in the works, but my life and self improve each day. I have begun to share my lessons with others, passing on what I had learned, and am now beginning to fill my role as a healer as well. I look forward to my future. It is not clear what is all to come, but each next step is certainly clearly visible, and I take each stride eagerly and thankful for the experiences I had. I plan to return to the Avatar Centre again to learn so that I can help to take healing beyond the jungle and offer it to so many of us that need it dearly.
All in all my time at the Avatar Centre was an integral part in my own healing path. If you are someone hearing the call of Mother Ayahuasca and the Amazon, there is no finer place to go than the Avatar Centre, and no better person to be in the care of than Brown."
- Will Russell 2017
- “Two friends and I traveled to The Amazon in Peru to stay at the Avatar Centre in May 2014. The Centre is located in Tamshiyacu, a small village that is a 45 minute boat ride down the Amazon river from Iquitos. The centre is about a mile out of town, and is isolated on a beautiful property. The adventure of getting there was part of the appeal. The centre was lovely. It had several single bedrooms and one with multiple beds all with mosquito nets, hammocks in the common space, ceremonial area/ yoga room, running water, electric (solar power) & modern facilities. It was nice to relax and take things slow and forget about time. Everyday, Browne went to the market to get fresh vegetables and foods for our meals. We also participated in cooking some of the meals. While at the centre we were able to explore the wonders of the Amazon. Our Pamela and Browne arranged for a boat ride on the Amazon to a remote village and a walk through the jungle with a native of the area that told us about the plant medicines, and what each plant was used for (cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s, etc.). Truly amazing that all the natural medicines/ remedies man needs is provided by Parkinson’s, etc.). Truly amazing that all the natural medicines/ remedies man needs is provided by Mother Nature in the Amazon. While at the Centre we participated in two Ayahuasca ceremonies led by our hosts, who are also committed shamans, working with the medicine. Our hosts also arranged for another ceremony with a local well known Curandera, which turned out to be an amazing experience. During one of the ceremonies with Pamela and Browne at the Avatar Centre, I experienced some deep physical healing. I saw a ball of white light energy travel down my body to my stomach/uterus. It felt like it was repairing and healing that area of my body. It was very warm and loving. Two months later I became pregnant with my first child. I decided that I wasn’t going to have children early on in my life, and had spoken about donating my eggs. I feel that this was the Universe’s way of preparing my body to carry a child. Everyone is on their own journey to discover themselves & to engage in experiences that make them who they are. Experiences like these change the way you look at life and the way you live. You see the beauty and magic in a world that can often be heavy, stressful, and chaotic & see that we are part of it, and it is also part of us. I definitely recommend visiting the Avatar Centre for an array of reasons. It may change your life.” - Keli Shoeffel
- "After spending the last 23 days in the Amazon jungle at the Avatar center, I have been truly transformed. I completed the dietas required for my healing, and worked together with Ayahuasca & other plant medicines, which have all proved to be amazing.
Pamela's ability to channel is strong, & her visions are precisely accurate. She was able to offer me significant guidance in regards to the effect of spirit entities on my life. She has given me the understanding guidance I needed, & the practices I need to pursue for the ongoing protection of my body & spirit.
Brown's knowledge & expertise with the plants is astonishing to say the least. His Icaros are incredibly powerful, beatiful to listen to, and healing on a deep level. With the help of Ayahuasca as a guide, he is able to pin point which areas of your life would benefit from adjustment, and then offer a plant or plants which most resonate with the condition, and therefore, which plants and preparations could help remedy the patients situation. I have found Brown to be a very humble guy with a massive loving heart. He was always so caring with his offerings of one-on-one sessions & support in assitance of my integration, which was a big part of me getting the most out of my experience.
Celia the shipibo curandera was so kind and generous with me, sharing icaros on-on-one, with her powerful voice. Before each ceremony, she would prepare and bless a beautiful flower bath for us, for cleansing and purification. This is something I've never experienced before..this level of care.
It was all so humbling. Brown, Pamela & Celia have given me both direction & tools, which I needed so much to continue my path of healing. I feel so blessed and humbled to have them be a part of my journey, and soul's path. At this point, they all fee like family to me, and I can highly recommend The Avatar Centre for a life nourishing experience."
- Jack Epifaniou 2017