Cosmology and Medicine of the Q’ero Nation from Peru

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Wisdom of the Inca

The Q’ero Nation of the high Andes in Peru are the last remaining direct descendants of the Inca, who called themselves the Children of the Sun. They retreated into the mountains upon arrival of the Conquistadors more than 500 years ago to protect and safeguard the ancient wisdom of how to live in Ayni (right relationship/sacred exchange) with Mother Earth, Father Sky and all living beings; the knowledge of the living and vibrating divine energy that flows through everything and connects All That Is; a deep legacy of healing techniques and energy medicine embedded in this cosmology, that stretches back 50,000 years. By now, research and findings in quantum physics have confirmed the existence of this omnipresent energy field, its open potentiality and our power to influence it through our thoughts, intentions and witnessing.



Upon their arrival in the mountains, the Q’ero Nation received a prophecy of the return of Pachakuti (Quechua language Pacha = world, earth, space/time, realm, soil and Kuti = turn, churn, movement). The prophecy speaks of a period of upheaval and cosmic transformation signifying a reversal of the world, an overturning of the space/time continuum and foretells of a grand cataclysmic event.

A Pacha also represents the span of 500 years, a traditional Incan way to read time. The first arrivals of the Spanish to the Americas (1476, Brazil -1492, Bahamas) coincided with a Pachakuti. Now, 500 years later we have entered a new Pacha represented by the tumultuous nature of our current world and environmental destruction, during which the paradigm of  Western civilization will continue to collapse while the way of the Earth people will return. More importantly, the shamanic elders speak about a tear in the fabric of time itself. As we change our way of thinking and become more conscious, redefine our relationships and spirituality, elevate to a higher state of consciousness, peace and order emerge out of chaos and we pass into an age of transformation and re-connection with nature.

The return of Pachakuti is taking place on a collective level. This tear in the fabric of time will offer us the possibility to leave all old concepts + perceptions of time + space in the past. These changes give us the potential to recreate ourselves in a completely new paradigm. The Andean elders advise us not to lose this opportunity because if we are able to give up the limiting concepts that we have around us, we finally will be able to see what we can be. This concept has been adopted by several political movements in South America, particularly those seeking to advance indigenous peoples’ rights. In this context, it signifies the beginning of a new cycle and the desire for substantive change in the political environment.


Sacred Space

At the beginning of every energy medicine session, sacred space is called in, addressing the four directions of the southern medicine wheel and its archetypes, as well as Mother Earth and Father Sun:

Sachamama/Amaru (Serpent/South), representing the element Earth, where we can learn to shed our past with the same grace as the serpent sheds her skin. The south relates to our physical existence and is connected to the root chakra.

Choquechinchay/Otorongo (Jaguar/West) representing the element Water, where we can learn to see in the darkness without fear, conquer the Ego by embracing uncertainty, master life and death and learn how to transform heavy energies (Hucha) into light energies (Sami). The west relates to our emotions and is connected to the sacral chakra.

Cewa Kinti (Humming Bird/North) representing the element Air, where we can learn to trust our intuition, listen to the voice of our soul and dare the leap of faith of stepping into the unknown of our soul quest. In the north, we receive the sweet nectar of life and we are supported by our ancestors. The north relates to our spiritual awakening and is connected to the solar plexus chakra.

Apuchin/Kuntur (Condor/East) representing the element Fire, where we can learn to establish higher vision and a change of focus from problems to possibilities, to step into self-responsibility and dream a new world into being. The east relates to conquering our mind and is connected to the heart chakra.

Pachamama (Mother Earth) is honored in her unconditional love and support of all life she bears.

Inti Taita (Father Sun) is honored for the wisdom of light he represents, along with grandmother moon (Mama Quilla) and the brothers and sisters stars.


Cosmic Parents

Mother Earth and Father Sky (or Father Sun) are regarded as our true spiritual parents, whereas our physical parents literally only gave us our body, raised and ideally protected us lovingly through childhood. The Q’ero, as with many other indigenous cultures, practice initiation rituals for boys and girls for them to consciously step into adulthood by accepting Mother Earth and Father Sky as their true cosmic parents, thereby releasing responsibility and expectation from the physical parents and putting it into the hands of the initiates.

I have come to experience that introducing this simple concept can already help clients to forgive and reduce anger and disappointment towards their physical parents while reconnecting them to a bigger order, a reliable relationship to these motherly and fatherly principles. I introduce this concept as a guided meditation prior to every hypno-therapeutic intervention, bringing my clients in touch with the energies of earth and sky, inviting them gently to integrate this transpersonal map into their inner world. Being embedded in this cosmology offers us a comfort and relief that can’t be found in our materialistic world view with its hyper individualization and separation, where care and support is marketed as a commodity and continuously destroys connection and common welfare. It reminds us that we are allowed to trust, have patience, faith and courage. It reminds us that it is worth the struggle of life.


As many ancient traditions in the world, the Q’ero work with the Chakras, representing energetic portals to our luminous energy field, which is believed to be the timeless blueprint of our soul, holding our destiny and predispositions. The Q’ero believe that all of our unresolved traumatic experiences, emotions and beliefs are imprinted in our luminous energy field, constantly informing our physical body via the Chakras and eventually causing psychological or somatic symptoms. They believe that our physical body is a manifestation of our soul, that we are spirit on a physical journey.


The basic energy healing treatment of the Q’ero is the illumination. The client identifies the issue they want to work on and blow it into a khuja, one of 12 stones the shaman holds in their mesa, their healing bundle. Once the affected chakra is identified it is opened and the sludge (Hucha) that has accumulated due to the imprint is cleared out and released to the fire. The khuja is then placed on the identified chakra functioning as a magnetic carrier of the intention that supports the process of clearing the imprint. Imprints are holographic – that is they are woven into the luminous energy field and can be cleared before or after psychological or somatic imbalances manifest. This is important, as the Q’ero claim to be able to heal before a physical manifestation can be detected medically. Once the imprint is cleared, the energy field is filled with light, which is both healing and reorganizing the field as well as connecting the client to their higher self existing outside of time.

I want to emphasize once again the distinction between cause and symptom, healing and curing. While a medical doctor will work at curing a disease by treating the symptoms, the shaman works at healing the cause by clearing the imprint in the energy field. The Q’ero believe that once all imprints are cleared and all chakras are balanced, we acquire the rainbow body, which is the full spectrum at which the luminous energy body radiates. The process of illumination can be compared to peeling an onion – this work is done over time, layer by layer until no imprints remain. As the shaman works on the energy level and tracks the imprints with their intuition, there is no need for a deep dive into the story behind it. Yet rewriting that story, drawing a new map of one’s envisioned life journey is important for the client to consciously step beyond the limiting habits and maladaptive coping strategies they have been exposed to for years or decades.

Cord Cutting

Embedded in the illumination process, there are many ways of healing different issues. One of them is cord cutting. The Q’ero believe we develop energetic chords with people we are in toxic relationships with. Like an umbilical chord, they enter the body somewhere and cause distortions as energies coming through that don’t belong to us. This is a boundary intervention, where the client vocally addresses the concerned person, giving back their energy and making a clear and conscious cut to no longer allow this energy to dominate them. Within sacred space the chord cutting is being witnessed and from my experience this is one of the most effective interventions, especially with women stuck in appeaser response.

Soul Retrieval

If an experience causes a serious dissociation or as the shamans say, soul loss, a soul retrieval is performed. This is another intervention embedded in the illumination process, where once the khuja is placed on the chakra, the shaman uses their drum to travel to the client’s unconscious on their behalf, as it is believed that we are unable to track our own lost soul parts. In the underworld, the shaman retrieves the soul contract connected to the original wound, the lost soul part and the gift it holds. The client then rewrites this contract, changing it from it’s limiting or harmful conditioning to something more life-enhancing, and integrates the lost soul part and their gift, thus having access to the powerful resources this part holds. Soul loss to the Q’eros is losing part of our essence, of our essential life force which derails us from our destiny and makes us fall in to the grip of fate. The process resembles that of the trauma therapist who helps the client to free and integrate the part that was dissociated as a measure of protection from further pain by supporting them to slowly allow themselves to remember, feel and release the trapped and frozen emotions from the body and nervous system.

As the Q’ero believe in past life times and timelessness, the loss of a soul part may have happened way in the past and thus effected many life times. Their cosmology is far more complex than ours and their work goes beyond what we may have accepted so far. We have come to understand the inter-generational connection to our ancestors through the findings in the field of epigenetics, but we are still hesitant to accept the truth of the spiritual nature of our existence.