What is Shamanism? How can it help me? Is it evil? Is it a religion? How can it hurt me? These are some of many questions I’ve received throughout my career as a psychotherapist. To put it simply, in my opinion Shamanism is about you learning more about you via spiritual practices that only you can create for yourself meaning, you are your own creator of your own experience.
What do I mean by you being your own creator? Let me explain what Shamanism is and then I’ll get back to you as a creator.
Shamanism is a spiritual practice where the Shaman, a healer for her or his community travels, known as journeying into the deep realms of the spirit world, retrieves information from their spirit guides in conjunction with power animals and brings this new-found knowledge to the seeker. Shamans also work with their ancestors, gods and goddesses of their culture.
The information that the Shaman brings back can come in different forms. One form may be a plant remedies that the seeker ingests or places topically, another may be a ritual that the seeker needs to do, it may also come in a way of sound where the Shaman speaks to the seeker. The seeker may not intellectually understand but the seeker’s soul does. These are some ways that the information brought back comes like, the forms are endless.
Now when I say you are your own creator of your own experience, I mean you’re the seeker and you’re also your own Shaman. Every time you take the time to meditate and go deep within your soul, you’re creating that experience. When you talk to yourself and you consult with your soul, your soul does and will answer you back. I’m not talking about hearing voices, that’s something else.
Shamanic practices can help you by decreasing your depressive and anxious symptoms. Practices like, meditation, reiki, crystal sounds, prayer, these practices help you get out of your head and into your soul.
There’s nothing evil about you consulting with that deep part of you that holds so much knowledge. This part of you that holds your information is that part of you that psychics tap into to give you your reading when you give them permission to do so. You can do that too!
Shamanism can be a religion and it can also be a practice. For some people like myself it’s a way of life. It’s as simple as lighting a candle and sitting in prayer. For others, it’s their religion. I think of religion when you look at someone or something as your God. I come from the school of ‘God Lives Within’. I think of God as accessible to all, goodness for all without the catholic shame or guilt. I think of God as the Universe. We are part of God/Universe therefore God/Universe is part of us. How can God/Universe be harmful? No.
Just know that you don’t need to be a Shaman to benefit from or practice Shamanism. Shamanism is similar to yoga where yoga means union meaning union of you with yourself. You don’t need to be a guru to practice yoga. Like yoga, shamanism is personal and as you extended your yoga practice to your community, you can also extend your shamanic practice.
One of the most common journeys used in Shamanism is the journey to the lower world. The lower world is reached through a hole that will lead you into the earth. The lower world is very earth based, trees, animals, plants, flowers, rivers, waterfalls and everything tends to be super-sized.
The upper world is reached though a rope or staircase into the heavens. This world is more celestial, crystals, brighter and lighter in color, celestial beings.
The middle world is the world we’re living in.
Also, to my amazement, two people in the same room can have a very similar experience. They see the same things and they don’t even know each other at all! And it’s freaky and super cool when the whole group sees the same things. Annnnnnd it’s also really cool, when I guide the group to the lower world and a few members go to the upper world and they have similar experiences! I find this work fascinating.
Here I’ve included two audio recordings. One is an introduction and the second is the journey.
Grab your journal and pen. Let’s do this!
After your journey to the deepest parts of you, write what you saw, how you felt and the conversations you had. If you want to go deeper, share your experience with your like-minded friend. Better yet, journey together!
As always… remember to love yourself the same way your Soul loves you,