What is Sananga and why in the hell does it burn?

 The pronunciation for Sananga is 'Sa-nan-ga'

Sananga is a tradition of the Matis tribe, an indigenous tribe of the Amazon. They have been using Sananga (also known as Becchete) and other Amazonian plants for generations. They use Sananga for healing both ritual and medicinal purposes, which include improving their focus and clearing out distracting energies before going on a hunt.

Sananga is a potent eye drop that has been used for many reasons, including its ability to sharpen night vision. Some tribes in Brazil use sananga prior to ayahuasca ceremonies because they believe it has a healing power that is more energetic than physical, increasing spiritual insight in those who use it. Many people today also use it in conjunction with kambô or other psychedelic plants and chemicals.

Among its myriad benefits, sananga is said to be capable of detoxifying the body, increasing visual perception, resetting the energetic field, and treating spiritual diseases (also known as “panema”) that spring up from negative energies in the body.

Sananga is made from the Tabernaemontana undulate shrub of South America. They take the bark from the roots of the shrub and grind it into a very fine powder, which they strain several times through mesh using freshwater. Not all of the active ingredients have been scientifically proven, but it is said to contain ibogaine, which is known to have neurological and psychological benefits. It also contains several alkaloids that can have strong psychoactive effects.

The Medicinal Properties

First and foremost, Sananga has spiritual properties to clear our blocked energies, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. The more we work with the plant, the more benefits we will start to feel from it. It can seek out the root of our problems or diseases and guide us.

The Yawanawá tribe and other Amazonian tribes have long used the plant to increase their long-range vision and sharpen their senses before going out on a hunt.

Sananga has been reported to help people with severe eye diseases like glaucoma, cataracts, and even blindness.

  • Sananga’s benefits include Antimicrobial, Antifungal, Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, and Anti-cancer properties. Antimicrobial: Studies from 1984 and 2002 show that the species T. pachysiphon and T. angulata have antimicrobial properties effective against a variety of bacteria. The bacteria species targeted include Staphylococcus aureus, which can cause skin infections and respiratory infections, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a notoriously drug-resistant bacteria linked to pneumonia, sepsis, and eye infections in people who wear contact lenses.  ​​​

  • Antioxidant: The Tabernaemontana genus also has strong antioxidant properties. While nutritional antioxidants are widely known for their value in maintaining general health, ongoing research also suggests  antioxidants could play a critical role in preventing age-related ocular problems like cataracts and macular degeneration.​ 

                                 

  • Anti-cancer: Studies dating back to 1977 have shown promising results that Tabernaemontana species could help combat cancer. The African species T. elegans was shown to be particularly effective at killing cancer cells.                           


The burn can be quite intense when you first begin using the Sananga drops, but it’s important to put the drops in both eyes quickly so it can evenly balance out the energies. After administering the drops your eyes will adjust to the burning, just lay back or sit in a meditative position so you can relax, focus on your breathing and allow the plant to work its beneficial magic. The burning sensation will gradually lessen the more we work with Sananga.