Want to share your profound story?   Email us at:  ayastory@22stories.com

” I’ve been so long without being grateful that I forgot how much it helps “

I grew up in Hawaii, and have been playing music and writing songs since I was a kid. When I was 17, my band and I moved to Los Angeles to pursue our dreams, but things didn’t unfold as we expected, and the constant stress we went through eventually led to the band breaking up. I had never experienced that level of stress in my life, felt alone and hopeless, and fell into a deep depression. I tried everything I possibly could to pull myself out of it—I worked out,  meditated daily, and even took cold showers— but nothing was fully helping me. Later that year, my friend invited me to become his business partner, and we started working together. Everything was ok on the outside, but something inside me was telling me that I wasn’t on the right path. I felt completely in disarray and was paralyzed by doubting and questioning what I was doing with my life. A friend of mine told me about ayahuasca, and I felt that it was what I truly needed at the time.  My first experience working with the medicine was beautiful: it put all of my distress to ease, it was full of love and care, and it felt like 

everything in my life would work itself out. It gave me the courage to start moving forward and to put one foot in front of the other. By the third ceremony it was very clear to me that I needed to listen to my heart. I finally realized that if I wanted to be fulfilled, I should move forward with what I’d always loved and what had always been doing: creating music and art. I faced the remnants of my depression head on, and since then it’s felt as though my depression, which had always been lingering in my subconscious, has evaporated. It felt like a major turning point in my life. I’ve been sharing my art ever since, and I’m super stoked on everything. The biggest lesson that I’ve learned from the medicine is gratitude. I’d been so long without being grateful that I forgot how much it helps. My underlying mission with music and art is to take people on a journey through themselves. Music and art truly get to the soul, and that’s really where most of our problems come from. And so I try to heal through my art and through my music.

Interviewer: Kirill Ignatieff (founder of 22STORIES)

Photography: 22PORTRAITS

Story editor:  Seema Seraj


Project Description

Ayahuasca is a psychoactive medicinal mixture of plants used for healing purposes in a ceremonial setting. The next morning after each ceremony a “Sharing Circle” takes place where all participants share their spiritual journey from the night prior.  The stories that come out of those sharingcircles are very profound and life-changing, but only very few have access to them. This project is about sharing those stories with a broader audience and help people understand the power and the benefit of the medicine and it’s community.