What Is a Kambo Ceremony and How Can You Benefit?

Nov 27, 2018

What Is a Kambo Ceremony and How Can You Benefit?

This article gives you a background understanding of what a Kambo ceremony is, and an account of my experiences with Kambo. I hope this is helpful for those of you researching the frog medicine, and also encourages some to explore this extremely powerful intervention.

Light passing through the jungle

What Is Kambo?

Kambo is a frog native to the Amazon Jungle. It produces a waxy resin which, when harvested, is used as a traditional medicine of profound healing potency.

My Relationship to the Frog Medicine

I have experienced four Kambo ceremonies in total. The first two were group ceremonies, and the second two were one-to-one with the Kambo practitioner. These four experiences with Kambo have changed my life forever. Furthermore, of the hundreds of personal development strategies and tactics I have explored, I would rank Kambo in the top three. I suspect I will work with the Frog Medicine once or twice a year for the rest of my life.

The Kambo Ceremony Structure

The Kambo ceremony begins with the Kambo practitioner talking with the participants. During this phase, a social and emotional connection is formed, and the practitioner begins to understands the illnesses, wounds, blockages which the participant currently faces. As the ceremony progresses, the participant drinks an uncomfortable volume of water (I drank 4 litres in my last ceremony). The water is there to help the flow of purging to come.

The Kambo practitioner uses a small stick of embering wood to burn holes into the participant’s arm. Then, the Kambo wax is administered to each of these holes. The medicine is administered this way because it would be broken down by the body before it entered the blood stream if it were ingested. The participant waits a few moments, then a warm, friendly glow comes across the body. Pretty quickly, that glow turns to nausea, and something like 30 – 40 minutes of extremely violent vomiting follows.

After the vomiting stops, the participant is invited to lay down to recover. After a lying down for a while, strength returns anew, and the participant is offered a light, nourishing meal.  I always have a strong appetite at the end of the ceremony.

A Kambo practitioner applies Kambo

What the Kambo Ceremony is Actually Like

Let me be absolutely clear, the nausea and vomiting are brutally tough. I actually fainted on my first Kambo ceremony, and during my second Kambo ceremony I didn’t even have the strength to sit up. Kambo isn’t the most painful thing I have ever done, but it’s a real challenge. In terms of actual pain, I would put it on par with a particularly brutal marathon.

Each ceremony was different in some respects. The first time I did it, I passed out, and as I did I remember a seeing a distant being of light taking me by the hand. The next thing I remember after that was looking up at my Kambo practitioner as he rubbed my arm, gently bringing me back to consciousness and another 20 minutes of nausea and vomiting During my fourth Kambo ceremony, for the few brief moments I was able to open my eyes I saw an intense point of light in the middle of my field of vision with glowing light rays beaming out from it.

During the ceremony, different thoughts come to the mind, some memories can be very distant and old. I get the sense that these thoughts are brought to my attention by Kambo to be healed. For example, during my third Kambo ceremony, I was fixated on the theme of strength. I remember feeling intense energy in my lower two chakras and being filled with a sense that I need to be stronger.

How Have I Benefited

Though there have been only a few clinical trials exploring its medical effects, Kambo has a reputation for curing a variety of different ailments. These include:

  1. Cancer
  2. HIV
  3. Depression
  4. Anxiety
  5. Addiction
  6. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  7. Hypertension
  8. Diabetes
  9. Arthritis
  10. And many more…

Kambo has a reputation as a ‘cure all’ amongst its advocates. Obviously, learning for sure what Kambo can and can’t cure will be discovered in time as more research takes place. From my own experience, if I were faced with a disease which Western medicine had trouble treating, Kambo would probably be my first place to go to fix it.

As for the general ways Kambo improves one’s body and mind, I find that it improves my mood, gives me a sharper sense of vision, helps me work through old psychological problems, and gives me a kind of charismatic glow that others seem to pick up on.

Most noticeably, Kambo is a catalyst for personal growth. In a similar fashion to taking a high dose hallucinogen, or undergoing a long fast, Kambo seems to unblock potential and sharpen consciousness in a way which is hard to explain. I feel I am a much better person on virtually all levels after going through a Kambo ceremony. It is a profound tool for personal transformation.

I find a Kambo ceremony gives me the breakthrough I need, and in the weeks which follow things just seem to come together and progress. If there’s ever a time you have plateaued in life, Kambo will be an excellent means to break through.

How Does Kambo Work?

As a true child of the Enlightenment, I love science and the intellect. The materialist paradigm is my go-to lens to understand the world, and that lens has a fantastic track record – check out Stephen Pinker if you haven’t already. However, understanding Kambo through the lens of materialism won’t make any sense at all. It would be as meaningless as describing a ballet dance in terms of Newtonian physics, or as pointless as describing music as sound waves. You take a poisonous collection of peptides, your body reacts, you vomit, you feel better. This lens doesn’t further our understanding, it crushes it. This lens also can’t explain the incredible healing effects.

For those of my dear readers who are staunch materialist-reductionists, please excuse the following…

I like to think about Kambo as an intelligence which transcends the physical world. When I partake in a Kambo ceremony, it feels like Kambo and I are meeting, and that he is deliberately and intelligently healing me. When the medicine is first administered, I get a sense that Kambo is scanning my subtle body for injuries, and then finds an area to work on. The work is shared between me and the medicine. The ceremony, then, feels like a relationship. The energy in that relationship is loving and generous and so kind.

Let me be clear, I think Kambo is a medicine which healths through altering the subtle body. The healing then manifests through to the material plane as a stronger, healthier body.

One of the fascinating observations I made following my Kambo ceremonies is how different my energy body feels afterwards. The various currents of feeling and emotion which flow across my body feel altered following Kambo. The energy body feels more alive and vivid. As I go about my day and interact with the world, I can feel my energy body more tightly and more actively. In particular, the energy currents across my face seem more more crisp and clear and strong, and their direction and patterns have shifted. My own understanding of what the energy body is and how is works is pretty primitive – I know that it’s there, but I have little practical understanding of how to work with it. Nevertheless, the energy shifts I feel as a result of taking Kambo feel intrinsically wholesome and good.

There are probably even more subtle and deep expressions of consciousness beyond our thinking mind and feelings and energy body. I get a sense that something shifts deep within that realm.

What evidence can I bring to justify this outlandish world view? Not much. The experience was subjective, and I can only bring my subjective anecdote to the table. Whether this is all true or not, behaving as if Kambo is a disembodies intelligence which heals the energy body seems to make life work better. Whether that view is true or not, I cannot definitively know. I do believe it though.


Kambo is legal in the UK as of 2018. I doubt it will be made illegal any time soon as the ceremony is extremely arduous, and it would offer little attraction to irresponsible users.


Kambo might be the most powerful personal development intervention I have done. It’s certainly in the top 3. If you have a burning desire to better yourself, then I highly recommend looking into this wonderful medicine.