About Shamans & Shamanism
Shamanism is the oldest spiritual practice on the planet and has been part of society on six continents. It is fundamentally a system of direct revelation. The word “shaman” comes from “šaman” in the Tungus language spoken by the Evenki people of Siberia. Many other cultures have their own words for the person who fulfills the role of the shaman. Although the term itself is imperfect as applied beyond its original culture, when distilled to its defining essence, shamanism is about a practical and personal relationship to the spiritual and natural worlds. It also relates to the idea of animism, that everything that exists has an essence. Part of living harmoniously is considering our relationships with beings of all kinds.
Shamanism (with its many names) has survived for so long because it evolves and adapts to its place and time. It stays relevant because it is always happening. Shamanists are rooted first within their current place and space. Direct revelation is not about emulating the customs of a particular people or a particular time. Each person has their own experience of the spiritual and natural worlds around them. There is no dogma in this work. There is a structure to work from, an ancient foundation upon which trained practitioners may be able to help you regain equilibrium, and through which you can grow your personal practice organically if you choose.
Core Shamanism, as defined by Michael Harner, includes practices and beliefs that are “universal, near-universal, and common” cross-culturally but are not seated within any specific cultural tradition. Especially due to a long history of cultural and religious eradication and oppression, many shamanic wisdom traditions have been lost. Practicing in this way allows people, especially those who have become disconnected from cultural history or the shamanic traditions of their ancestors, to reconnect to their individual sources of spiritual connection and practice authentically.
Learn more about shamanism as a practice. I’m happy to offer some resources that range from introductory, self-paced to in-depth, one-on-one training in some cases. My style may or may not be right for you. Whoever you work with, I encourage you to find someone you feel safe with, who demonstrates care and kindness. This is deep work, needed work and hopefully joyful work. Perhaps start with some of these suggestions :