Rapé 101

Rapé 101

There are many ways to apply Rapé: long and slow, fast and sharp, and everything in between. Soon you will learn to judge what is most appropriate depending on your particular style or the needs of the person you are serving. A short, quick puff has one more wake-up effect: a quick, uplifting puff. A long, slow breath can be more meditative. How you finish your breath is also important, drag weakens the effect of Snuff. It is far better to end with a deliberate “click” – so to speak. When you finish the blow, place your tongue on the roof of your mouth, in the same place you would place the tip of your tongue during yoga practice. It takes a little practice, but you'll see how this technique gives a more satisfying puff.

short and sharp
The short, strong breath is known as a Hummingbird. It’s a nice short puff that “wakes you up” – a more energizing application.

long and sharp
Long and crisp has an uplifting, deep effect: great to use with more substantial amounts of Snuff to really take it to the next level.

Long and slow. Long and slow it is called “Jiboiá”, the boa – an animal of sacred medicine highly revered by indigenous peoples. Like the boa constrictor, this strike is long, slow, and smooth, with an acceleration at the end. It is perfect for using small amounts of Rapé to induce a contemplative and meditative state. With larger amounts, it can induce a deep meditative state.

receive the medicine
After applying or receiving snuff from someone else, it is best to close your eyes and concentrate. Do not breathe through your nose, but through your mouth and let the snuff sweat a little. When it starts to run, spit it out or blow your nose, or both.

Working with Rappels is a cleansing process, so spit out any residence you feel running down your throat. Keep a piece of paper handy and let nature and snuff do their work.

Spit out any residue that drips down your throat
Hapé terminology
haux!! Haux!!
Although Haux has become a synonym for snuff users and can have many meanings, it has never been pronounced lightly in traditional societies. Many in the older generation disapprove of the way the word has become commonplace among today's youth and non-indigenous people. When you say ‘Haux’ and offer your prayers at the beginning of a Snuff session, you are effectively taking an oath that you are working for the highest healing good of the recipient and for the good of humanity. In the indigenous tradition, this word is very powerful: don't speak lightly and don't make promises you can't keep.

How to test a new kuripe or tepi.
Is a very personal instrument. Since they are usually handcrafted from natural materials, each one is unique. First make sure the kuripe fits well between your mouth and nose. Then load it up and test how it blows. See if you like the feeling or if it feels too “closed”: does it flow smoothly or is it tight? It also depends on whether you like a stronger or softer Snuff experience. Remember: it pays to choose carefully, as some kuripes will not suit you and others will just be perfect. In general, you can trust kuripe made by a good source, but trust your intuition to find the kuripe that is calling you.

Do you like a more open mouthpiece that gives a stronger puff or a narrower one for a smoother experience? Make sure the mouthpiece fits your nostril. As with kuripe, there is no formula for the perfect tepi: it depends on your preference. If you're new to Rapé, it will take some time to figure out what works for you. When you find the right one, you will know.

Serving snuff to a novice.
Go easy on them, don't try to impress or test them, and resist any urge to give them a strong experience. Use a small amount and be gentle! Some people can have a powerful experience with just small amounts. Not long ago, I gave a friend a little sniff of snuff – a big guy and a long-time smoker. His blood pressure dropped dramatically and he had to lie down. Over time, people will have opportunities to try stronger applications. Most people who take Rapé will, at some point, have a really strong experience. It may not be pleasant, but it will teach you something.

who applies
Make sure you have a clear mind, breath and intention. Snuffing requires responsibility: after all, you are breathing your life force into the other person's core, so you need to be attentive, clean and clear.

Back to blog