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WHAT IS SHAMANISM

Shamanism is the earliest spiritual path in human history. Shamanic practice is found in all the Earth’s indigenous people. It underlines the truth that all is connected and everything has a spiritual nature to it.


Shamanism is a way of living rather than an adherence to a religious doctrine. The core of shamanic practice involves acknowledgment and interaction with the World of Spirit and a re-connection to the Earth mother.


A shaman is a men/woman who serves and seeks the spiritual wellbeing of his/her community. He/she seeks higher knowledge to serve their people and maintain the balance between people and the spirits of all things. To be a shaman involves establishing a relationship with the powers of creation. There are infinite numbers of ways to do this: prayers, fasting, medicine walks, journeys and meditation, initiation’s rites, sacred ceremonies such as vision quest, pipe ceremonies, earth lodges, sweat lodges, etc. Ceremonies are ways in which one can establish a connection and communication with the non-ordinary reality or world of Spirit.  


Tradition and the ways to express shamanic ways vary from culture to culture but the essence of it is the same: establishing a connection with the spirit world to bring healing and insights to the physical world for self or for one's community.


One of the most common starting points is the connection with the Spirit Guides. This involves one entering what we call a shamanic stated of consciousness in order to receive or access information from the Spirit World through the Spirit guides.

 

Once a shaman is seen and respected by the Spirits because of his/her integrity, purity of heart and clear intent, then those Spirits become allies, serving and assisting the shaman with his/her work. The initiation into the Spirit World is then established.  Humility and purity of heart are important keys on the path, without humility and purity of heart, the spirits cannot see one's light. The more the shaman works on developing his/her consciouness - in another words: the higher the state of consciouness - the more help he/she receives from the Spirit World.

 

Accessing states of higher consciousness involves awareness of interwoven realities. These interwoven realities, or web of life, is where the shaman travels in his or her work as healers, diviners, soul retrievers, bridges, messengers, guides for lost souls, etc.

 


The challenges faced on the path can sometimes be vigorous, but the challenges are there as ways of learning and self-development in order to support the shaman in his or her service. Many are called, just a few answer: This is mostly due to fear and often the arduousness of the path.

 

In the Shamanic path you are the teacher and you are the student and that is what makes this path so powerful. The more you work on developing yourself spiritually, opening your heart to love more, serve others and expand your consciousness, the more help you receive from the Spirits. The Spirits then become your allies and also your teachers. To truly walk the Shaman's path one needs to be selfless.


One can say that Shamans are people called by compassionate Spirits to work as a bridge between the spiritual and the physical worlds. They are seen and respected by the Spirits because of their integrity, purity of heart and clear intent to serve others rather then the self. The Spirits then become their allies in serving and assisting with the work at hand.


While one can train to become a shamanic practitioner and develop his or her shamanic skills, it is ultimately the Spirits who call you to do the work to assist them and to help the wider community. This is when the initiation into the Spirit world really begins

 

Humility and purity of heart are very important on the shamanic path. The path can often be rocky and arduous if one is not constantly keeping the self in check.

 

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What is Shamanism

"Spirit is in everything, everywhere and in each one of us!" Claudia Goncalves Standing Stone