Visit the official website to read more about this project and ayahuasca.

The Jungle Prescription is the tale of two doctors treating their addicted patients with a mysterious Amazonian medicine rumored to reveal one’s deepest self. Dr. Gabor Maté has a revolutionary idea: to treat addicts with compassion.  His work as the resident doctor in Vancouver’s Portland Hotel – a last-chance destination for lifelong drug abusers – has been courageous, but incredibly frustrating. Maté hears of an ancient medicine beyond his imaginings: one that could provide his patients with a solution. Its name is ayahuasca: the vine of the souls. Deep in the Amazon jungle, French doctor Jacques Mabit is using this medicine to treat hardcore addicts.  Mabit runs a detox centre in the Amazon (Takiwasi or "The House That Sings"), using the plants and methods of traditional medicine.  Ayahuasca is a visionary formula that unlocks emotional memory; causing life-changing catharsis in those who drink it. The reported success rates for curing addicts at Dr. Mabit's detox centre are quadruple the average.

Dr Mate returns to Canada with a plan to work with a group of healers to treat patients struggling with various types of addiction. At these sessions they will serve ayahuasca: the acrid tea that occupies a grey area of Canadian law. But without a detox centre or support structure for his patients, will it work?

Since the publication of his award-winning book, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts, Dr. Gabor Mate has been one of Canada’s leading thinkers on addiction and its deeper causes. The experience of making the film has had a profound impact on him: “As a physician all too aware of the limitations and narrowness of Western medicine, I have learned much from working with this plant. The Jungle Prescription took me far physically, but even further in the spiritual realm where our deepest humanity resides.  The plant, and the experience with the plant, is no panacea. There are no panaceas. But as an opening to human possibility, even in the face of lifelong trauma and desperation, it offers much. Seeing people open to themselves, even temporarily, has been a teaching and an inspiration.”

The Jungle Prescription is produced by Mark Johnston, Mark Ellam, Amanda Handy, Robin McKenna and Jeronimo Mazarrasa for Nomad Films Inc. Go to the Nature of Things with David Suzuki to watch the documentary.



  • Interesting that dr. Mate’s
    Interesting that dr. Mate’s theory is counter to that found in EYSS that is people become addicts by consuming addictive substances. But that’s what happens when people who don’t share this malady try to figure us out. I love Marty’s opInion that the reasons why we started using drugs and/or alcohol are not same reasons why we became addicted. My own experience doesn’t support dr mate at all. I have a brother an sister who he up with the same type of childhood “trauma” that i did. We all started drinking for similar reasons. Yet I was the only one who became addicted. I guess it doesn’t matter to me anymore the whys. I just know that looking for underlying childhood causes is an exercise in futility for me.

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