Into the Woods - Discover the story of Rafael, a skilled artisan with a special passion for woodcraft!

Sacred Connection’s partners

are amongst the most precious and beloved pillars that compose our team. It is through their teachings, friendship, and work that we are able to compose our collection of exclusive and high-quality products while also broadening our minds, expanding our horizons, and journeying deeper into the intricate and beautiful pathways of the sacred healing of the Amazonian culture.

Rafael is one of those people that we deeply cherish and admire.

Not only is his work with noble hardwoods pleasant to the eyes and easy to fit in our hands, but it also makes for an admirable example of sustainability and careful craftsmanship.

We conducted a brief interview with Rafael to learn a bit more about his story and what goes into

Read the interview below:

“When and how was your first contact with the world of Sacred Native Medicine?”

“My first contact happened in 2017, when I was facing certain personal issues and battles, seeking to free myself from addictions, beliefs, patterns, and to find out my real purpose for being here.

This first experience of mine was a true turning point in my life. I had a very strong sense of Deja Vu. I can’t even really start describing the feeling, but it somewhat felt like I had already experienced that ritualistic moment, including even the taste of the forest’s sacred medicine.

“Do you have any experience with the use of rapé (Shamanic Snuff)? If so, could you tell us a little about what it felt like for you and what the use of this medicine means to you?”

My first experience with Rapé happened right after my first time trying Ayahuasca. When I received my first blow, the feeling I experienced was that I needed only that and that
alone to leep myself balanced.

Nowadays I consider Rapé to be like a Father who guides me, that offers me the strength I need to keep moving onwards. Now, Rapé is one of my main allies in this
 intense search for self-knowledge.”

“What path led you into becoming an artisan?”

“When I was a child, my parents used to attent a few parties where artisans from several places would gather to showcase their works for selling, and among their artworks, there were kuripes and tepis. These were the pieces that would grab my attention the most, and I’d find myself wondering what those tools were used for, but I was a little embarrassed to ask the artisans.

Years went by, and I started working along with my brothers in their carpentry. Around that same time, this enchantment for hardwoods started arising within me; I`d spend hours admiring their beauty, their colors, the scents, the shapes, textures, and the veins of the countless different woods.

It might even seem a little crazy, and I can`t even explain why, but it was then that I sarted collecting noble woods that would come to me through old furnitures that I would gather inside the carpentry, and also the pieces of wood that I’d find in discarded furnitures that I might have come across while walking around in the streets.

During my time at the carpentry I met the art of marquetry, which comes from Ancient Egypt, and when I first came across with (natural) medicines, I received a message from the Astral that stated: “in squared minds, new ideas never circle.”

I deeply reflected on that, added two plus two, and had the idea of making my own first tool. I presented the product to my partner and to a friend of mine who’s a Rqapé maker, and they told me I just had to present my art to other people. Still, I was stuck in my own beliefs that would tell me that that was foolish, and that I wouldn’t be able to sell anything.

Even so, I braved through and decided to make a few tools and show off my work, and then people started to come looking for me. I remember spending days upon days just answering those that were interested in my work.”

“How do you select the hardwoods that will be turned into a new product?”

I have a very beautiful and very strong relationship of love with this craft that makes my work evolve as I work on myself, shaping my own self as a human being. It’s like an alchemy where lead becomes gold, where I can turn scrap into luxury.

These hardwoods go through a pre-selection process, where I take only the parts that I can really use away from the ones that need to be discarded. At that moment, I can already visualize the final artwork, so for me it’s just something that happens naturally.

“And what about the creative process; is there any inspiration for the designs that you create?”

“The inspirations arised as I integrated my feminine, sensitive side, my intuitive and loving self (into my work). The connection with Shamanism and Native Art elevated my inspirations to higher levels, channeling the elements and the forces of Nature.”

You can check out Rafael’s gorgejous pieces of work:

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