Oswald said the center's website made its ayahuasca experience "sound very individualized. Despite the promises of the center's website, a very different experience awaited Kyle Nolan in Peru. A deat h , then a cover-up.
Kyle arrived in Peru in August , a rare overseas excursion for a young man who was more of a homebody than a world traveler. He journeyed deep into Peru's Amazon with hopes of experiencing a spiritual transformation. On the third night of Kyle's ayahuasca session, he never returned from his hut. Days later, when he didn't arrive home, Oswald called the Shimbre Shamanic Center and spoke to an interpreter for Shaman Mancoluto, who led the center's ayahuasca sessions. My son would never ever do that. So she and her daughter flew down to Peru to help local police search for Kyle.
For three to four days, they searched hospitals and bars and talked to taxi drivers, asking if anyone had seen Kyle. So Oswald and her daughter returned home to northern California while the Peruvian police continued their investigation.source url
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About a week later, Oswald said she learned from her contact with the Shimbre center that the shaman admitted to police that he had lied about Kyle leaving the center. They had "found him dead outside, under a bush," Oswald said. They "panicked and covered him up, and told everyone that he wasn't feeling well, that he was in his cabin. The shaman told authorities that he and two other men had buried Kyle's body, according to Oswald and Peruvian newspaper El Comercio.
She returned to Peru where she had to identify her son's body. An autopsy in Peru was inconclusive.
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Kyle's body was eventually brought back to California where Oswald said another autopsy also came up inconclusive, and he was cremated. According to El Comercio, the shaman told police that Kyle Nolan took too much ayahuasca.
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There's no conclusive evidence of what killed Kyle, Oswald said. It's still unclear how ayahuasca can kill someone. Very little is known about ayahuasca and its effects and many shamanic centers, including the Shimbre Shamanic Center, require participants to cleanse their bodies for several months before taking ayahuasca -- a regiment that Oswald said her son followed very closely.
Ethnobotanical organizations are trying to raise money to study ayahuasca and its medicinal qualities, as well as create a health guide for tourists interested in traveling to shamanic centers in the Amazon. There's a growing concern that as more Western tourists head to the Amazon looking for a psychedelic experience, more fly-by-night "shamans" will pop up looking to cash in on the boom. There have been other reported deaths , as well as reports of physical and sexual assaults.
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