What is a shaman?

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Here is the shaman’s job description.

What is shamanism?

Shamanism is an ancient practice, which makes the link with the invisible worlds.

It is rooted in almost all traditional cultures, on all continents.

The most famous shamans are located in :

  • Amazonia.
  • Mongolia.
  • Andes.
  • Siberia.

Today, there is a revival of shamanism, called neoshamanism.

The shaman

The shaman is the man or woman who practices shamanism.

He or she has spiritual, medical, energetic and social functions within an indigenous community or tribe.

He/she is believed to have supernatural powers. He/she is consulted in case of problems.

He/she may wear a ceremonial costume. He or she usually adopts certain attributes of his/her spirit animal, such as deer antlers or eagle feathers.

He/she is also called :

  • Medicine man, medicine woman.
  • Wise man or woman.
  • Marabout.
  • Healer.
  • Druid.

Femme chamane

What does a shaman do?

The shamanic functions are varied:

  • Interceding with subtle entities.
  • Connecting with spirits.
  • Helping to heal.
  • Guiding.
  • Administering medicinal plants and remedies.
  • Spiritual and energetic protection.
  • Accompanying deceased spirits to the light.
  • Channeling.
  • Counselling.
  • Divination.
  • Teaching.

The shaman organises ceremonies. He/she has many tools at his/her disposal, typically :

  • The use of altered states of consciousness, such as with ayahuasca.
  • Trance.
  • Singing.
  • Drums.
  • Offerings to nature spirits.

Some witches cross shamanic rituals with black magic, for example by sacrificing animals.

This is contrary to the benevolent mission of the shaman: to help human beings, in harmony with nature.

When to seek advice from a shaman?

The shaman can help with all problems, depending on his specialties.

Some shamans do not do healing for example, but have other abilities.

The main qualities of the shaman are :

  • Wisdom.
  • Empathy.
  • Close connection with the spirit world.
  • Vision of the whole, on different planes.
  • Ability to connect to universal knowledge.
  • Accessibility.

Usually, one consults a shaman to reconnect with oneself in depth, and explore new paths.

Not all shamans are reliable, as in all jobs. The best advice is to listen to your heart, to know if the shamanic work is done in the right way.

Forêt Sibérie

How to become a shaman ?

There is no official shamanic diploma… at least not yet!

You may however find supervised shamanic companionship, which takes place over a period of a few years.

The initiation is done from master to disciple:

  • By oral tradition, if the master is an experienced shaman.
  • By channelling, if it is an ascended master.

Anyone can awaken the shaman in them.

Sometimes the apprentice is chosen by the spirits… against his/her will!

Every shaman is linked to a tradition, present or disappeared. Example: Siberian, Aztec or ancient Egyptian traditions.

The path of shamanism is never simple. It is demanding and involves a significant personal investment.

To succeed as a shaman requires :

  • Extensive introspection.
  • Several years of learning.
  • Rigor.
  • Initiation rites.
  • Connection with nature and the forest.
  • Episodes of death and rebirth.
  • Journeys to other worlds.

Not everyone who begins the training succeeds in becoming a shaman.

Much of the shamanic work is done in the subtle, such as honoring the spirits of plants, animals and the elements.

The shaman’s actions therefore remain mysterious to his/her fellow humans. This can lead to loneliness, rejection and misunderstanding.

Tambour shaman

Conclusion

What is a shaman?

The shamans provide the link with the invisible worlds.

Their mission to help humanity requires the mastery of supra-conscious abilities.

Shamanism allows one to live in harmony with nature and subtle energies.

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