WHAT IS SHAMANISM?
Shaman… Shamanism… Shamanic Healing…
Ancient words in a modern setting, what do they really mean? Shamanism is a world view and set of practices that acknowledge the oneness and sacredness of all life, the spirit in all things, and the unlimited wisdom and power in the Universe. Traditionally, shamans were part of nomadic cultures and acted as intermediaries between human beings and the realms of gods, spirits and cosmic forces.
The word “shaman” is reportedly from the Tungus tribe in eastern Siberia and literally means “to heat up or burn.” This may refer to the shaman’s ability to create an inner fire and ceremonially work with the elements of earth, air, fire and water. Shamans journey consciously through the dimensions with spirit guides to access sacred knowledge and healing energies for the benefit of themselves and others. They have been called “technicians of the sacred” and “masters of ecstasy.” Ultimately, a shaman’s role is to harmonize with the forces of nature and Spirit to bring balance to the world.
Shamanism embodies the “journey of the soul” where one quests for wisdom, power and healing. This can be done through practices such as sweat lodges, fire ceremonies, vision quests, shamanic journeying, rites of passage and other healing rituals. Often one must “die the shaman’s death” and go into the wounded places of heart and mind, release the past with forgiveness, and let go of personal, familial and cultural ideas of who we are. Only then, can we more fully step into our power and the truth of who we really are.
Shamanism helps us awaken and trust our gifts of intuition, clairvoyance and connection to other realities, and the wisdom which comes from these gifts. Through shamanic processes we meet spirit guides in forms such as animals, plants, angels, mythic beings, humans, ancestors or elemental forces. Connecting with our guides can help us feel safer, more protected and more peaceful in our daily life. Shamanic work referred to as “soul retrieval” leads us to lost and disowned parts of ourselves and helps us reclaim them into the wholeness of our psyche. Through the support of ancient shamanic practices, we are able to shift our beliefs and perceptions of the world around us which can alter events in the material world and accelerate our spiritual growth.
HEALING OURSELVES, HEALING THE EARTH
Shamanism can ultimately help us heal the disconnection and isolation we feel from each other, the Earth, ourselves and the larger cosmos; and empower us to be more joyful, loving, and peaceful human beings