As we are aware, illness of all kinds is an inevitable accompaniment of our lives. In ancient times our witch doctors where there to teach us how to balance and protect our physical and spiritual health . Sadly over time, priests and modern medicine (medical practitioners) took over those roles, rendering our Shamans (witch doctors) without a place in our society, pinning derogatory labels on them, such as quacks, shrouding them with superstitions, scaremongering
...accusing them of hearsay and conversing and communicating with dark forces.
After many decades, Shamans are being recognised again. But like anything, this too, has its pitfalls. Some make a mockery out of what Shamanic practices truly are ✨ Shaman has been a hip and trendy word within the Pagan community since the early 1970s, many people have claimed to be Shamans - having healing powers, without having much idea of what it actually means, attaching to it instead, a wide variety of bowdlerized New Age practices such as waving smudge sticks and feathers, bashing the hell out of drums, or simply wearing fancy-dress costumes and amulets, exploiting genuine native cultures to procure skins, eagle feathers, crystals and so on.
Some simply think that the recreational use of psychotropic substances whilst raving the night away gives them the right to be called Shamans. You can drum and wave feathers to your heart’s content, but what makes a real Shaman is undergoing - and surviving - the Shamanic crisis, remembering, and afterwards acting as a Shaman facing your own personal demons.
A person cannot just decide to become a Shaman: only the spirits can choose us and make us a Shaman. The Shaman’s ability is won through personal hardships. In all parts of the world the dawning of the Shaman’s enlightenment begins with a ‘Shamanic crisis’, often in adolescence, in my case my entire childhood, but sometimes it hits us much later.
This can be a severe illness or breakdown which actually threatens your life, and you linger for a time between on the threshold of life and death. The Shaman is reduced, by the trauma of this incident, to a primal way of thinking and being, and only then can he enter the archetypal primordial state where humans can converse with gods, animals and plants.
Once this advanced level of Shamanic healing occurs, we can empathise with those who have experienced deep loss of loved ones, terminal illness, ptsd, personality disorders and many other life and mind altering experiences.
Above all, to teach you we all have our own divine right for connection 🌏 We also encourage learning and applying alternative therapies; such as folk medicine, herb lore, soul retrieval, journeying and meditations. Blessings to you, this lughnasa✨✨✨♥️ Sherry Gewitzke July 2018 Here are some useful books for reference : Cute Craft, by Dr Keith Souter Dictionary of Sussex Medicine, by Andrew Allen