shamanic journey

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The Shamanic Worlds: Claim Your Birthright

Many decades ago anthropologist Michael Harner developed and presented to the Western world the cosmology of Core Shamanism. As a result of his study and experience with shamanic cultures around the world, he determined that all have some things in common. One of those commonalities he described is the division of our experience of existence into Ordinary Reality (OR) and Nonordinary Reality (NOR). Ordinary Reality is this reality in which we find ourselves living; I call it the "consensus reality." In this reality, we don't perceive that trees sing, rocks move of their own volition, etc. Nonordinary Reality is the spiritual realm, which in the shamanic realm is the source of the reality we experience. In other words, Ordinary Reality is a reflection of Nonordinary Reality. And in Nonordinary Reality, trees sing beautifully, rocks move about freely, and we converse with spiritual beings to gain knowledge, help, healing and perspective. It is in Nonordinary Reality that the shamanic practitioner does the bulk of his or her work. Another organizing principle Dr. Harner presented is that Nonordinary Reality contains (at least) three Worlds: the Upper World, the Lower World and, of course, the Middle World. And there are various "levels" or locations within each of those Worlds. The Lower World is a very dense and expansive version of our own reality, with landscapes and animals like those in our reality. These caves, rivers, oceans, meadows and these Bears, Owls, Eagles and all other Power Animals, are very much more intensely SO than in our reality; it is as if we are perceiving the essence of these things and forces in the Lower World. The Upper World has, in my experience, opposite qualities from the Lower World; [...]

Is Shamanism Real?

I love the Internet. It has completely changed the way we communicate with one another, and created open doors for ideas and interactions that we couldn’t have dreamed of a few decades ago. When previously I’d have had to write you a letter or produce a flyer to let you know what I was thinking or what classes I am offering, now I only need think about it for a few moments, hit the keyboard, and you are informed and I’ve communicated. Another thing I like about the Internet is that I can read what you are thinking, as you wend your way to my web site. I’ve invited Google, in the form of Google Analytics, to tell me how people arrive at my web site. So it tells me a lot of general, not specific, information about who is looking at my site and how they found it. For example, I can see that my average viewer spends over 3 minutes reading my site. And I’m glad of that because one purpose of my site is to help you understand healing, coaching, Reiki, shamanism and the possibilities they offer for your life. Another thing it tells me is how you, my anonymous reader, might have arrived at my site through a Google search. And those are the really intriguing bits of information Google feeds to me. The most fascinating Google search that brings you, dear Reader, to my site is this: Is Shamanism Real? I like this question because it is what I asked, myself, for several years. As I intently studied shamanism and began a shamanic practice, I found great joy in it. But I asked myself at least daily: is this real, [...]