It is the oldest practice in the world.
It is not a religion . . . there are no doctrines or dogma that one must follow and adhere to. It is an absolutely personal relationship with Spirit and everything is Spirit created in that form by Spirit to experience itself as creation.
One of my teachers, Francis Rico, explains ...
"Holy man Frank Fools Crow - a Lakota Sioux, and nephew of Black Elk - was the grand old Medicine Man of the Sioux Nation. Widely recognised as a holy man because of his total transparency. He was the elder that tribal leaders turned to for guidance and blessings. The divine Presence that he allowed to shine through his life was a supernova of light that continues to illuminate pathways in spiritual dimensions for all of us who travel the mysterious worlds spoken of in the ancient traditions.
Within indigenous cultures, a world of healing traditions were often originally handed down and not something you just decided to do. Creation selected her Shamans, testing them for their capacity to care for the totality of life, and for their ability to move energy without cracking themselves. And of course, having illuminated the DNA of these individuals from the inside, Creation has continuously evolved through established shamans and their lineages in the selection, initiation and training of new generations of shamans.
Until now, shamanic wisdom, resources, tools and practices have always been held in reserve for the initiated - for those who, through training or natural giftedness, have learned to speak, hear, feel, see, understand and communicate in the ancient sacred language of Creation, 'Deep Beauty'.
In recent decades, many elders around the world, have stated that Creation is calling from deep within our hearts - calling us to come forward within our traditions and our communities and to speak and act with wisdom and compassionate regard for the shared well-being of all life on earth.
However there are those that decry, protest that the old ways are exclusive to them, having guarded and held these traditions as a sacred trust, they are understandably reluctant to let go, continuing to insist this ancient heritage must be kept from those who would exploit it for their own benefit. Genuine nobility to those protesting sharing their spiritual inheritance, but given the times we're in, it has become obvious that we NO LONGER HAVE THE LUXURY OF THINKING THIS WAY. Those that guard the old traditions and those that would exploit them are too late. The Survival of the world depends on our ability to share what we know and to work together now, before it is too late.
Frank Fools Crow 's comment on sharing sacred knowledge and ways was:
"The ones who complain and talk the most about not giving away medicine secrets, are always those who know the least".
The word shaman came to us actually in the late 1600s via Russia and re-presented by Dr Michael Harner in the 70s. It is a Siberian word from a verb-based language and shaman or saman actually, meant being excited, vibrating with energy, living and seeing in the realm of rippling, excited vibrations. 'Excited' in the sense of spiritual ecstasy, communion with this spiritual vibration. The language emphasised the seeing, especially seeing the high vibrations, so that anyone vibrating highly enough to be seeing vibrations was shamanising.
The word shaman/saman can apply to man or woman, one individual or a group - and the 'man' part of the word did not mean attributed to man. This word is not an English word like human or woman. Shaman is an action, or state of being, not a title.
Frank Henderson MacEowen a Scottish shaman from the Highlands describes people who enact traditional rituals, affirming the living, flowering, vibrating energy patterns of family, clan, community and culture as shamanists - those who shamanise.
Shaman Don Miguel Ruez expresses the truth as 'power that shapes our world is contained in our thoughts and in our speech'.
Martin Prechtel, an exquisite speaker of Deep Beauty says 'just call shamanism that old time religion, an ancient vine sprouting a sweet new blossom of ecstatic joy, releasing the otherworldly scent of profound gratitude just for the intoxicating pleasure of taking our next deep breath'.
To shamanise is to work within the realm of spirit, communing with the All and the Guides gifted to us by the All, Creation, Deep Beauty to aid, support, protect, direct, imbue, teach, heal, create miracles through us as an entry point for them to help, heal, guide, change vibration of whomever has come to our/my door, rather, they have sent to our/my door for their ecstatic vibration to infiltrate and transmute whatever is not of harmony, light and the perfection of the All, that is , Creation.
To work with shamanistic practices is beautiful, ethereal, indescribable as modern earth based language cannot translate what is seen and gifted on journeys or within ecstatic conversation without extracting the wonder, beauty and magic of what we see. We let the outcome, after processing, of what has been gifted, illuminate what is inexplicable and indescribable without language diluting the wonder that is experienced.
This simple prayer, is a beautiful attempt to simply express gratitude for what is because expressing gratitude for Creation's, for Deep Beauty's intervention is extremely powerful energy and a wonderful mantra, that will assist the elevating of one's vibration:
thank you for the gift of life
opening in this moment
within my heart,
each beat an embrace of love,
each breath a renewal of Creation.
Opening my eyes, my hands and my mind to Presence,
let me become your love in action,
and your beauty in this world.