Wisdomkeepers, Paqo Andino is an inspirational, emotionally intimate documentary film revealing the heart centered, celestially guided lifeways of the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition, one of our planet’s few remaining uninterrupted wisdom lineages.
Filmed on location in the Peruvian highlands, this unprecedented film takes us on a journey into the heart of an ancient earthkeeping culture to experience a way of life that is at once practical and mystical. It presents universally applicable insights into a state of being based on loving kindness, unconditional reciprocity, sustainability and the sanctity of daily life — the foundations of what is known as The Living Peace.
Like the groundbreaking films Koyaanisqatsi and Baraka, Wisdomkeepers, Paqo Andino is not narrated. As such, viewers receive a direct, unmediated experience of living with the Paqos, witnessing their heart-based intelligence and being touched by their active, reciprocal relationships with the conscious life force inherent within all aspects of the natural world.
This inter-cultural project has been created as a cinematic legacy to share humanity’s ancient, holistic lifeways and help inspire and revitalize modern, industrialized cultures at a time when unprecedented numbers of people find themselves out of balance with the natural world and seeking a deeper means of connection and renewal.
Altomisayoq (Alto•me•sigh•yoke), meaning one who embodies the prayers of the high altar, is a name given to Andean celestial Paqos by European chroniclers in the mid-16th century. These Paqos, or maestros of the Living Energy, who constitute the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition are not shaman. They comprise one of our planet’s few unbroken lineages of ancestral wisdomkeepers and spiritual intermediaries who have stewarded humanity’s heart wisdom, animistic consciousness and celestially integrated reality for over 13,000 years.
In 1532 during their maltreatment by conquest and inquisition forces, Andean Paqos found it necessary to retreat to remote, high-altitude locations to safeguard their practical and esoteric wisdom. By enduring the hardships of extended isolation and secrecy for the past 480 years, this ancient lineage has been able to maintain its unified cosmology while keeping its holistic lifeways intact.
Following the disruption of the Inkan civilization, fewer and fewer Paqos have been able to sustain the lineage’s high practices due to corruptive influences, mentorship die-off and a general lack of modern day apprentices willing to undertake the rigors of this demanding and resolute path. Presently, as foretold by oral history, the Apus, or mountain spirit benefactors, have begun recognizing and initiating western practitioners in order to expand the lineage, integrate cultures, restore humanity’s cognitive lifeways and increase spiritual responsibility among industrialized societies.
Jeffrey Wium of Wiumworks Media/OEAO in association with Beyond Boundaries Institute and Ayllu K’anchaq Qollyur have created a heartfelt cinematic offering to convey the legacy of one of humanity’s ancient eco-spiritual lineages, inspire interconnectivity and help revitalize industrialized societies through the rediscovery of essential components of personal and collective well-being.
Filmmaker Jeffrey Wium is a lineage holder in the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition with a professional background in multi-media production. In 2008 he received inspiration for this project during a pilgrimage in the Peruvian Andes.
Here he shares his experience with the project:
"In 2002 I was injured while filming a television series and led into the realm of holistic healing as a result of my recuperative inquires. This 'accident' offered deep insights into the need to integrate physical, mental and emotional healing in order to experience a larger state of wholeness, and introduced me to the mystical realms of ancient spiritual healing arts.
After four years of directed learning, initiations and certifications in a variety of modalities, I came to recognize a deep resonance in my work with the maestros of the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition. In early 2007 I was called and initiated as an Andean Paqo and began traveling to Peru every six to eight weeks to facilitate my work. A year and a half later the inspiration for the film came to me during a high mountain pilgrimage.
Returning home from the trip I shared my vision with a close friend who recognized the value of the project and unexpectedly offered initial production funding and additional philanthropic resources on the spot. I realized then that my two seemingly separate worlds were coming together and began gathering my skill sets to coordinate multiple production trips while continuing my work as a Paqo.
I knew that accessing and recording the historically secretive lifeways of the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition would require cultural sensitivity and operational invisibility. To meet the film's technical requirements, maintain access to sacred sites and ceremonies and assure cosmological integrity, I would have to work solo, drawing on all of my experience as an Andean lineage holder and producer/director/cameraman.
In 2010, following completion of principle photography, I allocated time to wind down my teaching and client responsibilities, relocate my family and bring in our second child. This period provided space for reflection and to remind myself not to get in the way of how the project wanted to present Itself.
The editorial process took fourteen months to complete. It was an unorthodox approach, executed in a single pass from beginning to end using the Paqos native Quechua language. When my colleagues completed the Spanish and English translations, I set about clarifying the dialogue to make it more accessible to western audiences and generated subtitles.
The film’s inspiration, coordination and production has been one of deep faith, listening and inter-cultural / inter-dimensional integration into an ancient way of being, a personal and professional paradigm rooted in our natural, unified state of reality and "ayni”, unconditional right relationship.
This project has Directors beyond myself, and as such, has drawn support from people and organizations that have recognized the call. I am deeply grateful for this collaboration and for the opportunity to receive the gifts of their experience and wisdom. And, it is to our Ancestors that I offer thanks for setting this all in motion so long ago."
Jeffrey Wium is a western-born Paqo in the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition. Raised in the United States, his life studies, apprenticeships and spiritual exploration have taken him across five continents and multiple traditions, beginning with his first trip to Asia at the age of 19. He draws upon twenty-eight years of professional experience in a wide range of photography, video, film and multimedia projects that have provided first-hand knowledge of world traditions, cultural ideologies and perceptual realities.
In 1996, after ten years of intensive workloads, location travel and living in major cities, Jeffrey moved to the quietude of a small town to nurture a path of inner study and personal ethos. He completed Qigong certifications in Portland and Beijing, traveled within Tibet, Nepal and India, and received the Avaloketesvara initiation from His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Los Angeles.
Jeffrey continued his cosmological and technical development with Native American wilderness living skills, philosophy, healing and vision quest protocols; Usui-Tibetan-Sai Baba Reiki mastery, Hawaiian lomilomi, TM, psychosomatic bodywork, yoga teacher training, sound healing; and nondenominational experience as an ordained minister. During this period, he produced media and design projects based on education, advocacy, sustainability and outdoor exploration.
In 2003 Jeffrey stepped away from media production to begin formal training in Andean holistic lifeways, energy medicine and healing modalities. He accrued four years of directed learning from academic programs and research expeditions as well as traditional apprenticeships in the Peruvian highlands. During this period Jeffrey found natural resonance among the maestros of the Andean Holy Mountain Tradition and was called and initiated as an Andean Paqo in early 2007.
Jeffrey has continued his traditional path of initiation and exploration as well as facilitated talks, programs, retreats and Andean pilgrimages. Wisdomkeepers, Paqo Andino has been created as a means to share a direct, unmediated experience of humanity’s ancient eco-spiritual lifeways based on the principles of unified consciousness, heart intelligence and holistic sustainability.
“Not only was the cinematography amazing, the heart came through. Incredible, Stunning… the purity, the love, the knowing that the time is NOW and we are finally home together in the ONENESS of it all. I am mostly without words for what I experienced."
– Pat H, New Haven, CT
“A unique experience and much more than a movie – a valuable and beautiful, long forgotten message to the core of our ancient souls. A true film of the Heart.”
– Katrine K, Oslo, Norway
“I find the film to be transporting and absolutely flowing with sacredness. It is stunning to witness the energy of the spirits, the mountains and the sky all participating so actively in the film. To watch it is to not only witness the life and ceremony but to be part of it.”
– Jan S, Montpelier, VT
“Wow. Near the end of the film I was filled with such a mix of deep gratitude and compassion for the human condition that tears began to flow down my cheeks. So I think it's safe to say I got the heart transmission. Thank you for the gift, from my heart to yours.”
– Katherine O, Kaneohe, HI
“I am a member of the School of Remembering and I was so touched and moved by your film. It was truly profound to see the wisdomkeepers holding space for humanity. I truly felt the depth of their profound words and love for all. Hearing the Paqos speak was life changing.”
– Laura A, Los Angeles, CA
"I am still basking in the afterglow of the activation I received from the film and your workshop. The resonance alone from each has been a catalyst for accelerating an unfolding that has been underway for a long, long time. I am profoundly grateful and humbled.”
– Rachel C, Santa Fe, NM