By Christa Muths
Shamanism is humanity's oldest and most enduring spiritual practice. There is evidence of the relationship with Spirit from the very origins of the human race, expressed through ceremony as a way of maintaining a union with Creation. Placing the flowers on the graves of our Neanderthal ancestors or paintings upon cave walls to totem animal's knowledge, all this is a reflection of our own desire for personal and conscious union with the All-That-Is and of our spiritual quest as being an innate human drive.
Inherent with the Shamanic worldview is the understanding of each person's own unique and autonomous path to reach their own purpose and truth. Being free of dogma and doctrine and organized spiritual institutions, shamanism enable and supports us to find and walk upon our own destiny. This recognition of the individual's right and responsibility of ones own awakening and fulfillment is but one of the very specific elements of Shamanism which establishes it as a viable means of meeting today's desire of an honest and authentic approach to self realization and ones integration in society.
Shamanism as a whole is humanity's spiritual inheritance and contribution to the collective unconscious of our species and therefore it provides a firm and proven system of knowledge regarding the relationship between Nature, Cosmos and Humanity.
Shamanism worldwide gives us a compendium of ceremonies, dances, songs, approaches to spirit, meditations and rituals not only to keep the connection between our soul and All-That-Is open but to develop and grow.
Shamanic healing is a multiple connection between ourselves, the shaman, nature, cosmos and spirit. It always aims to integrate our whole being within our universe. Many diseases and an feeling of being unwell are due to an separated connection between the soul of the individum and it’s spiritual home, a disconnection between ones inner and outer worlds.
Shamanism does not dwell on past events: there is only a vast, awesome, ever-moving, great moment of now, where there is no separate past, present or future. It is the aim of the shaman to help a person to connect to this inner integration.
Methods, tools, medicines and symbology will vary from culture to culture but all forms of shamanism intend to connect people to their own spiritual path. Most cultures use the following shamanic techniques:
Finding power animal(s):
Getting in touch with our animal connections and finding the power of the animal kingdom which support us in our lives struggle.
Soul retrieval: We are often alienated from our spiritual source and have a strong feeling of a loss of soul, which is often linked to traumatic events in our life. Through a soul retrieval ceremony we can re-unite with our soul and feel a very strong unification with our Spirit and Being.
Shamanic extraction: The old cultures believed in malevolent spirits who were out to harm us and found their way into our body. Through Shamanic extraction we can change malevolent images and concepts we harbour and we are able to leave our being and consciousness and we feel lighter and united with our total being.
Shamanic divination: Learning to look into the past, present and future from different dimension, a way to become a seer.
Shamanic healing journey: We will go on a shamanic journey to find all the healing power within us to overcome obstacles and clear our own pathway.
Shamanic drumming: Scientific research has proven that shamanic drumming relaxes the cardio vascular and activates the lymph system. Sound and rhythm also connect with our Soul and Spirit. The drumming is also a way to help us to find clarity and an inner strength in our path.
Christa Muths is international acclaimed author of books on healing, color therapy and symbolism. She is the founder and principal of espacio, an institute established to provide training in holistic studies. She has been trained as a shaman in Mexico, Peru, Italy and is member of the International Foundation of Shamanic Studies. She holds courses worldwide and enjoys travelling and learning from different cultures. Her scientific background and enthusiasm to learn and explore new approaches provide her with a knowledge and experience that combines the science of mind with the science of emotion and spirit and soul.