Mestre Gabriel Founder (recreator) of the UDV
Run to where
there is shadow,
chamada by Master Gabriel (translated from Portuguese)
Update - 2012
Today the Uniao do Vegal (UDV) is a legal church with many centers throughout in the United States. The main central center is in Sante Fe, NM with other major centers in San Francisco, CA (Fairfax, CA), Norwood, CO and Seattle, WA. There are probably 50 - 75 active members in each group and a total of maybe 200 scatters throughout the United States and Europe.
Beezone - Note:
My wife and I in 1995 started what is now the Bay Area UDV center in Fairfax, CA. We are no longer members but are friends with current church members. The UDV is not what would be traditionally called a 'public' church where members could visit or attend functions without an invitation. The UDV operates on what might be call 'by invitation only' and in that way operates more like a closed or secret society. If you're interested in looking further into the 'Way' or the 'Path of the UDV' then I suggest you find someway of making contact with one of it's members (their main centers are in Sante Fe, New Mexico, Seattle, Washington, Norwood, Colorado and Fairfax, California) and work on getting an invitation to be invited to one of their 'pot lucks' where you would have an opportunity to meet the members and where they meet and get to know you. This is the most common way of being introduced to the Path of the Uniao do Vegetal and it's members.
If you have any questions you can always email me at Beezone.com. But remember I'm in no position to invite or recommend you to anyone within the organization, as I said, UDV is a closed (secret society) church and only by receiving an invitation from a member can someone be brought into their circle.
Uniao do Vegetal
This was written on my return trip
from Brazil where I visited and participated in the
activities at various centers of the UDV. It was written to
clarify my understanding of the church and it's philosophy.
It is MY understanding. I gave this to a number of Mestre's
who stayed at my house and all of them agreed with the
thrust my interpretation.
The Uniao do Vegetal (UDV)
The UDV teaches a path of Light, Peace and Love. Connected with this core teaching is a body of knowledge and instruction given to those disciples who demonstrate a 'memory' of this knowledge (based on their previous incarnations and degree of merit). Those disciples that demonstrate this 'memory', through their questions or demonstrate their commitment through their duty and works are invited into the 'instructive body' where higher teachings are given. The Language and teachings of the doctrine of the UDV are given in (and only) Brazilian Portuguese, which is (the language) extremely important within the UDV. Without an understanding of this language, disciples cannot advance to the higher teachings of Mestre Gabriel and the UDV. It is therefore, a necessary requirement to learn Brazilian Portuguese if a disciple is to understand the particular teachings of the UDV.
Disciples of Mestre Gabriel
The UDV teaches a path of Light, Peace and Love. Connected with this core teaching is a body of knowledge and instruction given to those disciples who demonstrate a 'memory' of this knowledge (based on their previous incarnations and degree of merit).
Those disciples that demonstrate this 'memory', through their questions or demonstrate their commitment through their duty and works are invited into the 'instructive body' where higher teachings are given.
Language and teachings of the doctrine of the UDV are given in (and only) Brazilian Portuguese, which is (the language) extremely important within the UDV. Without an understanding of this language, disciples cannot advance to the higher teachings of Mestre Gabriel and the UDV. It is therefore a necessary requirement to learn Brazilian Portuguese if a disciple is to understand the particular teachings of the UDV.
The tea Hoasca taken is made from two sources. One is a vine, Chacrona and the other is a leaf, Mariri. The growing, acquisition, harvesting and preparing of this tea is the central function of the centers or Nucleos. These centers or temples are the principal social structures for the gathering of disciples. The temples are the primary places where the tea is taken in ceremonial sessions. The purpose of these sessions is to receive the 'illumination' and the teachings of the UDV and Mestre Gabriel.
Myths of Origin
One might suppose that the mythology of the UDV would have been inspired by one of the Indian groups inhabiting Brazil's western frontiers. This does not appear to be the case, however, and the identifiable elements would suggest rather that the UDV acquired its esoteric lore form contacts with mestizo Peruvians and Bolivians. Three principal figures appear in UDV mythology:
King Solomon: "Salomão o Rei o Imperador" ["Solomon... the King... The Emperor"]
Tihuaco: "É o Marechal a força o mariri" ["He is the Marshal... the strength... the mariri"] [mariri is the name of the Banisteriopsis caapi vine]
Mestre Caiano: "O In-Caiano a reencarnação do Rei Inca... o primeiro oasqueiro" ["The In-Caiano...the reincarnation of the Inca King the first oasca drinker"]
Solomon points to the Old Testament and Christian element in mestizo folklore, while Tihuaco and the reference to the Inca suggests an inclusion of highland Quechua elements absent in Brazil, but widely distributed across the border. The relationship between these three figures is complex. King Solomon is generally credited with providing the mystical "key" to the use of the hallucinogenic drink. He did this twice, at least: once to the mythical hero Mestre Caiano, the reincarnated Inca King, and once to the historical figure of Mestre Gabriel, who is seen not as the creator but as the recreator of the UDV - an esoteric group which had already existed in mythical times, when it was led by Mestre Caiano. At the beginning of a drinking session, therefore, it is the spirit of Mestre Caiano who is called, as a guide to the state of awareness produced by the drug. - see below for reference
The teachings of the UDV and Mestre Gabriel revealed in these regularly scheduled (escala) sessions are given through the Mestre (teacher) conducting the session. In the sessions, the churches documents are read and then chamadas (calls) are made to bring in the guiding forces that are the guardians of the light. The calls are made by the Mestre to invite or invoke forces associated with Hoasca into the session. These forces guide (work with the energy circulating within the session) and direct the disciple if their 'concentration' is strong, to higher sources of knowledge. If not the light and force of the tea will 'purify' and 'cleanse' the disciple, mostly in terms of 'throwing up', called a 'payment'. The conducting Mestre is the link to the 'Superior Mestre' and it is up to this Mestre to provide this connection. Disciples are not oriented in any way other than the outwardly social structure. Once the tea is taken the disciple is left between his or her own inner psyche and the mysterious qualities of the tea.
If the disciple is true to the UDV, he or she must understand that this path is a total path and once the disciple understands this, they will know that it is their one and only path to God. This path is not shared by any other teachings. It is a complete path within itself.
Disciples who drink the tea and do not have this understanding are drinking the tea for 'other' or 'lesser' reasons, or they have not developed this 'higher' understanding because of their particular 'merit' and therefore must seek this higher understanding.
It is of course clear, drinking a 'sacrament' can be useful and instructive. It is also more evidential clear that to 'maintain', 'keep' and develop the 'insights' received one must continue to drink the tea. This is because the 'illumination' is NOT ones true and natural state of consciousness. The tea is required and that is a limitation. It is conditional. The 'realization' although 'illuminating', does not remain and therefore one is 'required' to return 'once again' and 'reunite' with the tea, regularly. This therefore, is a 'way of life' and one must maintain their connection to the 'source' of UDV if any benefit is to be 'kept'.
The teachings and knowledge base of the UDV is very limited in terms of the larger body of religious and spiritual teachings in the traditions of the world. It is considered by some to be a fourth to fifth stage teaching and therefore limited in its full scope of understanding to the Full Breath of Illumination. To see more on the limits of a fourth to fifth stage teaching see The Seven Stages of Life. The UDV because of its limited 'universal' understanding and 'superior astral' seat considers itself 'superior' and therefore exclusive and limiting to others. They have a dualistic understanding of the cosmos - inferior and superior forces - and therefore are excessively 'upward' and 'ascended' in their orientation towards the Divine.
As long as you regard yourself or any part of your experience as the "dream come true," then you are involved in self-deception. Self-deception seems always to depend upon the dream world, because you would like to see what you have not yet seen, rather that what you are now seeing. You will not accept that whatever is here now is what is, nor are you willing to go on with the situation as it is. Thus, self-deception always manifests itself in terms of trying to create or recreate a dream world, the nostalgia of the dream experience. And the opposite of self-deception is just working with the facts of life.
Chögyam Trungpa, Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism.
For a fuller look at the history and teachings of the UVD see:
Ayahuasca Use in a Religious Context
The Case of the União do Vegetal in Brazil by Anthony Richard Henman, Feb 2009
Adapted from a 1985 paper presented at the 45th Congresso Internacional de Americanistas
See video 'Spirit Molecule'
The Search for God
The following is from:
Bubba Free John (Adi Da Samraj) - THE WAY THAT I TEACH - Talks on the Intuition of Eternal Life - Chapter 8 - Renouncing the Search for the Edible Deity
The traditions of "saviors" all over the world are a religious dimension of the search for the edible deity. That is one way of analyzing this tendency or game in the theatre of human life. But there are cults surrounding edible things all over the world - magical edible things, important edible secrets known only to a few. At the lowest or most elemental level are foods that are just good for you, or herbs that will rejuvenate you, like ginseng, or herbs that will make you hallucinate and suddenly see something that is remarkable, something that turns you on and makes you feel happy.
But these are not the highest and most famous forms of the edible deity. The highest form is still basically legendary. It is called by various names, but "soma" is probably the best known. In our time many people are actively looking for it. They are trying to identify various plants and other substances from secret, far-off places all over the world as this soma, which, when taken, completely rejuvenates you and makes you an immortal. Partaking of this soma is the same as taking the "bread and wine," you see. It is a version of the same ritual. And many people are actively looking for it, just as people are actively looking for saviors, the cultic edible deities.
But if you can consider the whole argument that I have presented to you, perhaps you can also understand that the true "soma" is not something that you can eat. Of course, there are good things to eat and do. But the true "soma" is the transforming internal secretion of the whole body in its natural state. The secret is to get the whole body-being into its natural state, in which it is naturally secreting all those substances that rejuvenate it, enliven it, keep it psychically awakened and aware in the fullest possible sense. Now we are toxic, enervated, our energy and attention are bound exclusively and strategically to certain kinds of functions - essentially the lower or gross functions of money, food, and sex. We are in conflict. Our blood is impure. Our cells are full of toxic accumulations. We are socially disturbed and in mystery about everything altogether, waiting for something sustaining to appear on TV!
Somebody is going to make the announcement on TV sometime, about the ultimate, absolute, scientific, newsworthy discovery. The edible deity is going to appear there sometime - today's newscasters, if they can live so long, may get to announce it. And then millions of people will all go and join that cult.
So there are cults of the edible deity still appearing everywhere. People try to eat me! People come to me for that purpose, to establish a cult, to engage in a conventional and irresponsible association with me as the edible source at the center. But the responsible devotee living in Divine Communion, enjoying the advantage of right relationship to one who is the whole body, enlightened, such a devotee is literally responsible in daily practice for the simple process, the Law, of his own structural being. That functional body-being therefore continues to grow. It becomes purified and rejuvenated in the ordinary way. And from time to time the devotee may fast and rejuvenate himself. After he purifies his cells and blood, he may take herbs and other substances that intensify and restimulate the glands and the higher mechanisms of the body.
However, the true "soma" is not eaten in the form of any objective meal. The "soma" is what is released in the body when we are successful at living the Law. The "soma" is released in the most absolute Divine Enjoyment. It is the nectar of Amrita Nadi,' the current of Immortal Bliss - "amrit" is the ancients' word for the "Divine Nectar." In some sense it is a physiological process - the higher glands begin to secrete substances that are now suppressed because of the impure condition of the blood and the attenuated energy and attention of the being. These substances are secreted by the glands, and they rejuvenate and awaken the various psycho-physical centers.
But the "soma" of the whole body is not accumulated in cultic fashion. It is sacrificed, thrown on the fire of the heart, of Divine Ignorance. We do not know what a single thing is, not even our own body-being. We are priests in our ultimate Realization. In Bhava Samadhi, the ultimate Realization of Truth, we are not simply sustained and made immortal in objective independence. We are made a perfect sacrifice. We are made immortal not by accumulating benign things from without, but by throwing the whole cycle of assimilation and elimination to Infinity. The body becomes like a ladle of butter, and we throw it into the infinite Ignorance-Radiance, which we intuit from the heart, the whole body-being. That is how we become immortal - literally by dying while alive.
Bubba Free John (Adi Da Samraj) - THE WAY THAT I TEACH - Talks on the Intuition of Eternal Life - Chapter 8 - Renouncing the Search for the Edible Deity
Adi Da and a Tale about Ramakrishna
See more on what Adi Da says about Happiness