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Thread: Just trying to get the ball rolling

  1. #1
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    Default Just trying to get the ball rolling

    I saw that there where no posts beneath the Shamanism section, so I would like to get the ball rolling, and have some discussion here. What exactly is Shamanism? How does it relate to Animism or, say, Shinto? Are there above ground organizations which practice Shamanism? Also, and in my eyes most importantly, how does Shamanism relate to other forms of magick, and what benefits can in bring a practitioner?
    Facilis descensus averno

  2. #2
    A
    AlchemicEnchanter Guest

    Default

    I just started college and was delighted to find that they actually have a Shamanism class. So, I'm enrolled right now and it is very interesting. The most important thing to know about being a shaman, is that a shaman is born, not trained.

    The shaman becomes gravely ill or has a near-death experience where they pass/out or go comatose. In this state the shaman is revealed the 'spirit world' where dieties of the four directions (I'm researching these right now in shamanism) give you your tools that you must create once you awake. In the visions, instruction is often given too on how to use these tools, and it is often a mixture of these tools and effects that the shaman later combines to create a spell or ritual.

    Here are some examples of tools discovered: (each with it's own individual purpose. Mind you, these are only those that I've seen so far in my studies)

    -Bow
    -Spear
    -Turtle's Cup of life
    -Flowering Rod
    -Hoop of nations
    -Wing of the North (a fan)
    -Peace pipe
    -Incense burner
    -Healing Herbs
    -Drum
    -Digeridoo
    -ect.

    Each of these had specific instructions on how to be made and what it should consist of for the desired properties. Because much of the knowledge of the shaman is based off of vision and meditation, it is considered to be a most powerful form of magic. (because it relies on knowledge directly from the source if you get me.)

    Looking at shamanism overall, (at least in native-american tradition) a person is often Classified based on their conciousness:

    -Wings: Your view is universal, a search for unbridled knowledge.
    -Legs: Your view is cultural. You live for your community and people, to please and support others.
    -Roots: You live for yourself, and are essentially an introvert. You view the world from a unique perspective, and see how it impacts you and your soul, not the rest of the world.

    Everyone is considered to have verying amounts of these, but one normally dominates the others. I am a shaman of the Root. I'll post more later, otherwise I'll be late for class.

  3. #3
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    Default

    Thank you again, Alchemicenchanter. Now, as I take it your class is on Native American Shamanism. But how does Native American Shamanism differ from the use of the term in other parts of the world? And is it more, as i see here, of a sort of mysticism, where knowledge and spirituality is the ultimate goal? Or does it have a significant drive, as we see in more western forms of magick, to impart one's will upon the universe?
    Facilis descensus averno

  4. #4
    A
    AlchemicEnchanter Guest

    Default Well....

    Shamanism is considered to be a more honorable form of magic, only because the spells and effects are not used for directly ones will, but often the will of the community. For each give society there would be shaman, that oversees and helps other people in the village/town, almost never seeing to his or her own interests, but the interest of the people. I think of this as a very beautiful path, because it encourages a selfless attitude that is rarely seen in the occult arts.

    As for my class, it's covering all angles of shamanism, from mongolian, to native american, to them New-age weirdos (sorry if I offend anyone). However, we also had to chose one area of expertise that we would look into more depth at. I chose Native american for two reasons:

    1) Shamanism relates directly to nature and the environment you live in, as such, it's good to chose a shamanic path that fits your biome. I don't want south african rituals if I live in a tundra. Different resources, different effects.

    2) The books for the native american perspective were cheaper. xD I'm in a tight spot for money right now, so that helped too.

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