Sacred Healing: The Peruvian Despacho

The best gift you can give your partner

is to dress like his parents

and apologize.

@BisHilarious tweet


My heart is overflowing from the happiest and most memorable Valentine’s week of my entire life–no sex involved!  With an expanded view of love beyond romance, there was so much to celebrate: cozy dinners with neighbors and friends, thoughtful surprises of gifts and flowers, dance parties with fun people, and most meaningful of all, a very unusual Valentine’s party my daughter and I attended.

A Powerful Goddess Shaman decided to avoid unnecessary angst and disappointment Valentine’s can bring when our beloved fails to show or deliver what we expect. She hosted a beautiful Peruvian Despacho Ceremony with her favorite people to affirm how we are the true source of unconditional love and healing. My daughter and I were moved to tears as we explained every element we chose to be part of the artwork we created for each other. This most touching experience made me felt seen by loving eyes, grateful to be blessed and bless in turn. My daughter said, “I’ve never cried so much tears of joy!”

Despacho is a Spanish word for “dispatch” or “shipment.”  It is a symbolic offering of your prayers for support, thanksgiving,  desires and blessing. The ceremony can be performed individually or as a group, a most meaningful celebration for birthdays, weddings, memorials, milestones and life transitions. A despacho is similar to a mandala or sacred creation in that it holds symbolic elements and the prayers of the participants for whatever concerns them: relationships, finances, health, career, etc. As the shaman adds elements to the despacho, it becomes a living prayer that brings energy shifts and healing.

To create your own, begin with a large piece of white paper that will serve as the wrapping for all of your offerings. Choose each ingredient you add for its significance and bless it with a prayer or intention before positioning it harmoniously with the other symbols at the center of the paper. Include elements to signify fire, earth, water and air. Examples:

Soil for the feeling of being grounded and secure

Sugar and candy to bring sweetness and love

Corn and grains to symbolize growth and nourishment

Flowers for beauty, joy and love

Arrange your symbolic items with great care and beauty on the paper. Take your time thinking of what else can symbolize what you are praying for.

When your mandala is complete, fold the paper and tie up the bundle beautifully. You can ceremoniously burn your creation to let your intention become part of the air, bury it in the earth to compost for new endeavors, or release it into a river as a symbol of letting go of your desires as they become part of nature’s flow of energy.


Choose the symbols then assemble your Despacho at the center of a sheet of square paper


This Romeo could not resist tasting the sweets I chose to symbolize joy, fun and play for my daughter’s mandala


She cried on my lap as I explained the symbolism of each element I chose for the artwork I dedicated to her


Wrap your creation beautifully before burning, burying or releasing into a body of water


Click on “Leave a Comment” (top left) to share what symbols you might choose for your Despacho.


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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mountain
    Feb 25, 2016 @ 22:29:41

    It makes me wonder what I might gather to send on its way. I’d choose a body of water to release
    my Peruvian Despacho. I love the romance of it floating away.

    A very sweet and touching variation on Valentines. Thank you for sharing, Goddesses!



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