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balen13
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PostSubject: Shamanism   Wed 24 Feb 2010 - 3:39

Helen Asked me to create a topic for Shamanism so I guess I'll start with the normal and perhaps most difficult question to answer.
What is Shamanism? and by extension what is a shaman?
you'll probably get a much clearer answer to that by going here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaman

Due to the Shamanic Nature ask another shaman and you'll probably get a different answer Wink heres mine:

The word Shaman itself (despite some commonly held beliefs) comes from the turkic language of Western China, eastern europe and Siberia. Its modern widespread use (especially in America) comes from the anthropologists studying the different cultures. Its general meaning varies depending on the culture, but generally relates to wise "man". some other commonly used terms are Clever fella, cunning folk, medicine man, etc

To me the word shaman simply means "I am" or an extension of "I am that I am" and I find anyone using it to afford themselves status laughable Wink

Anyway, before this becomes anymore long and rambling, I'll open it up for comments or questions Wink
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Wed 24 Feb 2010 - 18:26

Thank you Balen,

How did you start your path into shamanism?


Elder and founder

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There are NO coincidences in this life.......
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Wed 24 Feb 2010 - 19:55

Oh, I want to comment later when I have more time!!!!
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Wed 24 Feb 2010 - 23:20

L'Angel, no rush I'll still be here Wink

Helen, wow tough question.
It was not so much a beginning of the path (that is back in my prelife memory somewhere) but a recognition that this was the path I was on. Which was pointed out to me by another shaman, I fought the idea of it as a while before I had to accept that it was true Wink

Nearly every shaman goes through an ordeal/trial a deep sickness where they are left to make their own way out and heal themselves, which in the process gives them insight into themselves and through that everyone (and thing). Mine was a depression which really set in after my father died from MND which I blamed myself for.

Its not something you really choose to do (rather you are chosen) lol if we had the choice most of us would of said "no" Wink
not that I would now, because it is immensely rewarding, but also hard and thankless most of the time.

Saying that however anyone can practice and benefit from shamanic techniques, and get the rewards without the level of sacrifice we go through Very Happy
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Wed 24 Feb 2010 - 23:28

thank you, I didnt realise it was a 'be chosen' path and I also didnt realise that most would choose not to - if you know what I mean...

sorry to hear about your father, and what is MND (sorry)

Thank you for sharing and I look forward to hearing more!


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There are NO coincidences in this life.......
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Wed 24 Feb 2010 - 23:48

I lost a post somewhere, anybody seen it???

Anyway, what I was saying is.... A friend of mine went on a "journey" through Peru. She took some amazing photos and in one is a Shaman and a Shamanic practioner. Is that someone who just practices the techniques?

Also, Helen...can we post pictures here? If so, how?
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 0:10

there are a few people that have 'lost' posts, I can promise you its not me....

Yes you can post pictures, if you go to the top of the screen you can see gallery, click that then personal album, upload pic and you can upload any picture that is on your pc - or you can put the [img] code from places like photobucket in the text box before you type your message - just be sure to preview first so you can see if it has worked!


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There are NO coincidences in this life.......
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 0:39

Hi Helen,

I noticed on one of my posts, where someone had posted while I was typing a reply that it came back and said "new messages have been posted to this topic" and prompting me to save or cancel. its possible that this is coming up and people are closing it thinking it posted (I can't remember if it came up after the notification saying it was posted or not). hope this helps Wink

On to your question, MND or Motor Neuron Disease is a disease that causes the cells in the brain that control movement of the body to deterioate. basically this means that the person slowly loses control of their body, until they either die from infection (unable to fight it off), cardiac arrest, or asphixiation. (apologies for my spelling) its similar to MS in many ways but I believe the difference is that it effects the brain rather than the muscles themselves.
(I could be wrong there, I'm mostly ignorant of how MS works)
Its a horrible disease and I'm hoping to get the spare time soon to actually see if I can help ease their suffering with the massage work I have done.

L'angel,

Yes that would be right, or more specifically they haven't been chosen and gone through the death-rebirth ordeal where the old self dies. Most people you meet that claim to be shamans will usually be the practioners, which we don't mind, as they can usually handle most things, and generally lets us get on with our work Wink
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 0:55



Obviously, this is not the picture of the Shaman, but it is a picture of concentric circles in Peru (from the same trip) I thought this was very cool! I would love to go to Brazil and Peru...in my next life, hopefully!!!
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 0:56

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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 0:58

The names on the above picture of the Shaman and the practioner...Quechua Shaman and shamanic practioner, with 2 women in back and boy in front (they are visitors only)!
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 1:30

balen13 wrote:
Hi Helen,

I noticed on one of my posts, where someone had posted while I was typing a reply that it came back and said "new messages have been posted to this topic" and prompting me to save or cancel. its possible that this is coming up and people are closing it thinking it posted (I can't remember if it came up after the notification saying it was posted or not). hope this helps Wink

On to your question, MND or Motor Neuron Disease is a disease that causes the cells in the brain that control movement of the body to deterioate. basically this means that the person slowly loses control of their body, until they either die from infection (unable to fight it off), cardiac arrest, or asphixiation. (apologies for my spelling) its similar to MS in many ways but I believe the difference is that it effects the brain rather than the muscles themselves.
(I could be wrong there, I'm mostly ignorant of how MS works)
Its a horrible disease and I'm hoping to get the spare time soon to actually see if I can help ease their suffering with the massage work I have done.

L'angel,

Yes that would be right, or more specifically they haven't been chosen and gone through the death-rebirth ordeal where the old self dies. Most people you meet that claim to be shamans will usually be the practioners, which we don't mind, as they can usually handle most things, and generally lets us get on with our work Wink

Thank you Balen, this may be the case - I have it set so that if someone posts at the same time as you you have the opportunity to change what you have written -

I do apologise I have heard of Motor Nueron Disease, it is an awful disease - no need to answer if you dont want to, why is it you blame yourself?


Elder and founder

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There are NO coincidences in this life.......
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 1:36

Not to pry, but I was wondering the same thing Balen? Blame and guilt are terrible burdens to bear.
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 2:00

Very cool L'angel! he looks strangely familar Wink
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 2:03

Wow!
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 2:06

Yeah it sucked.

Oh I don't now, but I did at the time. It happened in my late teens so like most teenagers it of course was all about me lol Wink
I remember believing at the time that I had been tested by the gods and that he was paying the price for my failure.
It certainly seems silly now of course but it did take a while to work it out.
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 2:36

I am so glad that you did get it worked out...Oh yes, the teen all about me years (like the entire universe is connected to you and your feelings, wants, and desires) Sorry that you had to go through all that, but what is the saying,???? "If it does not kill you, it only makes you stronger"...I am sure that the experience and your father's death did add to your strength. It was in you path for a reason and is part of who you are today! Not silly at all....it formed a part of you, as you are now.
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 2:55

Lol funny you quote that, thats the phrase that got me through those teenage years most of which weren't pleasant for me.

Agree totally Smile
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 17:06

I am glad you realised that it wasn't your fault too

I also agree that although extremely painful and emotional, it has formed part of who you are today, and I am pretty sure your dad is so very proud of you!!


Elder and founder

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There are NO coincidences in this life.......
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 25 Feb 2010 - 21:56

Thanks Helen,
yes, I think it did in many ways.
I did certainly snap me out of the selfishness of that age, and given me a deep sense of compassion for those who are suffering.
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ravenstar
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Sat 12 Jun 2010 - 1:21

balen13 wrote:
Helen Asked me to create a topic for Shamanism so I guess I'll start with the normal and perhaps most difficult question to answer.
What is Shamanism? and by extension what is a shaman?
you'll probably get a much clearer answer to that by going here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaman

Due to the Shamanic Nature ask another shaman and you'll probably get a different answer Wink heres mine:

The word Shaman itself (despite some commonly held beliefs) comes from the turkic language of Western China, eastern europe and Siberia. Its modern widespread use (especially in America) comes from the anthropologists studying the different cultures. Its general meaning varies depending on the culture, but generally relates to wise "man". some other commonly used terms are Clever fella, cunning folk, medicine man, etc

To me the word shaman simply means "I am" or an extension of "I am that I am" and I find anyone using it to afford themselves status laughable Wink

Anyway, before this becomes anymore long and rambling, I'll open it up for comments or questions Wink

I've always wanted to learn Shamanism. I've read many books and the first thing I learned was the Journey to find my power animal. It's a Bear!

One of the key wisdoms held by many shamanic cultures is the concept of the
Circle of Life, also known as the shamanic wheel. Just as there are many
different cultures who respect the Circle of Life, so are there many symbols
associated with it, including the circle, the medicine wheel, the pentacle, the
Celtic cross, the sun wheel, the spiral sun and many more. These symbols have
led to many insights into the life cycle, and meditating on them (especially the
ones you personally feel a connection with) can bring this insight to light in
your life.

Could you balen, or someone explain the shamanic wheel and its symbolism? Smile
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L'angel
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Sun 13 Jun 2010 - 5:20

Great question!!!
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balen13
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Mon 14 Jun 2010 - 1:31

Lol Ravenstar, start with one of the most simple and yet most complex questions Wink

The shamanic wheel represents the initiation which never ends, and so represents (to quote Douglas Adams) "Life, the universe, and everything" the creation and study of the world is like a spiral (fractal) the more you go into it the more you find there is to learn.

So I guess the short answer is that the Shamanic wheel represents the shaman, their relationships, their tribes, their journeys and the world around them.

It also represents the cyclic nature of life as well, life and death, rich and poor, cold and hot etc and how these "opposites" are just different sides of the same coin.

As different cultures have different symbols its difficult to go into specific symbology, even though they generally have the same underlying meaning in most cases.

So Generally:
The center represents the self (may not be shown but there is always something there (for example the handle of the drum for siberian shamans represent the self as it ends in the centre but is on the back of the drum so not seen on the front design)

then we have four directions, which can relate to four seasons or there might be more divisions in places that have more types of seasons.

Other than this then you would normall have a representation of the tribe, and of the shamans relationships with power and totem animals, and other spirits.

If you have a specific example in mind and can post the image, I can explain further Smile


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Shadowfox
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PostSubject: History of shamanism   Thu 17 Jun 2010 - 3:53

history of shamanism

Shamanism is quite possibly the oldest belief system known to man. And is considered by many the oldest form of healing. It is believed to have originated over 25,000 years ago in the paleolithic hunting cultures of Siberia and Central Asia.

The word Shaman is derived form the Siberian Tungus word "saman", which is defined as a technique of ecstasy. Shamans are considered the masters of trance and ecstasy, and is considered to be the dominating figure in certain indigenous peoples.

Shamans are often the religious leaders or priest of the tribe. It is believed that he has "magickal powers that can heal the sick. He/she is called upon to mediate between the people of the community and the spirit world to cure disease, exorcise evil spirits, and to promote success in hunting and food production, and helps to keep the tribal community in balance. Traditional shamanic rituals included singing, dancing, chanting, drumming, storytelling, and healing.

The shaman is a person who can see a persons soul, he can see them and know their form and destiny. A shaman works with spirits rather than being controlled by them, he communicates with the dead, demons and nature spirits.

Shamanism is still practiced all over the world, although each culture's shamanic tradition has evolved in different ways. Native American medicine men perform soul flights and vision quests to heal. North American Inuit shamans undertake undersea spirit journeys to ensure a plentiful supply of game. Tibetan shamans use a drum to help them in spirit flight and soul retrieval. Central and South American shamans often use hallucinogenic plants to invoke their shamanic journeys. Australian aborigine shamans believe that crystals can be inserted into the body for power.

These are just some of the beliefs of shamanism from around the world, As i had said before, ecstasy is one of the prime abilities of a shaman. But just what is ecstasy? Well, simply put it is being able to achieve and altered state of mind and perception eather through meditation, or use of psychedelic drugs. As i have never used such a substance, i can not honestly talk about the experiences and effects of them, i do know that one can achieve "ecstasy through meditation. There are many different forms of meditation, and i have used quite a few of them. But it was not until i was shown two different types by my spirit guides, that i found an easier way for me to gain this most vital ability.

To me the most important knowledge i have discovered on my journey as a shaman, is the knowledge that we are all one. This truly did not come to me until i was shown what i have posted on the site, that i call "My creation story". This was shown to me by one of my spirit guides, and shows how all things in creation, no mater how big or small, how close or how far, are all connected by the Spirit of Creation. Shamanism is also the belief that all things have a spirit. Yes even the trees, birds, rocks. EVERYTHING, is alive and a part of each other thing.

Another thing that is very important to shamanism, is the love of all creation, and of self. As a shaman it is vital to live in harmony with all of creation. A balance must be created within oneself. To live with this balance is to live in a constant state of ecstasy. To know true love of self is to feel the love of the universe around you and know that all things are of you and you of them.

Yes i will be repeating this phrase many times during our lessons. But it is perhaps the most important thing, not just in shamanism but also in every other craft i have practiced as well. A shaman is not an individual, he is a part of the greater whole. It is this knowledge, in my opinion, that gives the shaman his greatest strength.

Nature is perhaps the greatest teacher not just to a shaman, but to everyone who has an open mind and the willingness to precieve what is being shown to them. Shamans love to be in nature, to witness the balance and energies of creation. To acknowledge the life and death struggles of every living thing. It is here we see and learn the greatest of life's lessons. What we see and precieve happening in a forest is also happening out there in the universe. Life, death, destruction, creation, it is happening on a cosmic scale. All the way to the ends of the universe, all the way to within our selves every second of every day. With this type of knowledge it is in my opinion very easy to understand that all things are linked together.

Think of it this way if i may, In the woods a pack of wolves, hunt say a family of deer. Now it is rare they kill an adult unless it is ill or trapped. They usually single out the weak and sickly for it is an easier target. This ensures the wolf pack can eat, and procreate. It also ensures the survival of the deers, for only the strongest, and healthiest usually survive, to procreate as well.

Now does not the same thing happen within ourselves? Yes it does. think of our immune system. does it not act the same way a pack of wolves does. When we become sick, our body sends out blood cells that attack the weaker cells within our body. thus killing the weaker sick cells. Ensuring the stronger cells live and do not become weekend by the sickness.

What happens in nature, happens within ourselves, This is to me the greatest proof, that all things are connected.

Over all shamanism is not truly a religion, it is a way of life, a way of precieveing the universe and how we fit into it. It is perhaps the eldest system known to man, and if that is truly so, then all other forms of beliefs, religions etc, sprang from this centeral system of universal truth.

Here is something for you to ponder, and it may actually make you think. Take a pencil, and draw an atom with its orbiting electrons and protons, now once you have done this, draw a picture of our solar system. each planet as it orbits the sun, now compare these two pictures. And tell me we are not of all things.
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Shadowfox
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PostSubject: Re: Shamanism   Thu 17 Jun 2010 - 4:45

The spirit wheel represents the cycle of life to the native american shaman.

This represents the seasons, the elements, but not just the usual 4 elements it represents 5, earth wind, water, fire, and spirit. it also represents the 4 races of man. in saying this it represents the foundations of creation, and our connection to them. This goes far deeper in its explanation, and i will continue if you so wish, but this is the basics of Native American beliefs.
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