We find Shamans in cultures ancient and modern throughout the world. From the Shamans of Siberia to Native American Shamans to the Amazon and everywhere in between, Shamans are essential in countless cultures and tribes worldwide. Shamanism is the oldest form of healing practiced in the world.
What is a Shaman?
It’s a long answer. I will only touch briefly on it here. Shamans date back about 25,000 years! They were responsible for the health of their community as well as individuals within their community. He/She was responsible for connecting between the spiritual realm and the earthly world and creating a balance within and between them. This balance would encompass many areas including the physical, mental, spiritual and emotional.
Shamans are medicine men, responsible for rituals, they are herbalists, healers, mediators and the middle men between the spirit world and life on earth. They are extremely important in their community.
A Shaman believes that every thing is alive and has a spirit. Every thing is vibration (which science now also understands. Funny how they believed this 10’s of thousands of years before modern man understood this to be true). Everything exists in an energy system contained within a greater energy system. Every thing is connected to every other thing in a ‘web’ of energy (life). Energy and matter are the same. Every thing has a spirit and even though spirituality cannot be seen, it affects visible reality. Actually I suppose many modern religions have the same beliefs as Shamans!
How does a Shaman heal?
They will go into an altered state of consciousness or ‘journey’ and gather information from the spirit world. Some obtain altered states with certain herbs, some with chanting, drum beating, rattling, and other various ways. Once they contact with the spirit world, they are given advice or answers to their needs.
They also use a variety of other methods other than journeying. These include but are not limited to the use of herbs, aromatherapy, rocks and gemstones, totems, visualization, nature, plants, reading aura’s and even the use of chakra’s. One important method is soul retrieval. The Shaman would search for and recover/restore the vital essence of a person who had lost it through mental or physical illness or misfortune. Not an easy resolution though as even when the piece of the lost soul is put back, the Shaman then must work with the patient to restore their balance or ‘self’.
There are so many great reads out there on Shamanism. Too many specifics to cover here. But a Shaman heals in many ways and has a deep knowledge of understanding of the spiritual world and utilizes it in how he treats and heals.