Friday, May 4, 2012

Non Core Shamanism , Animism Respecting All

As I finished my painting Between Two Worlds in my Shamanic journey the topic of Non core Shamanism & Animism  keeps coming up for me .
it is nothing new I have issue with so called spiritual programs that charge money .that a spiritual healer learns via apprenticeship more often than not . that plastic shaman who sell crystals gathered from raping the land & have big plastic angel statues bought at walmart are not shamans .rather it is all based on ego, being lost & feeling ever so important but at a cost of taking from others .
I know sounds harsh .I'm not a fluffy everything is light & joy person .
I was encouraged to paint the vision I'd had during the Moon Voices in Action gathering for Aboriginal women healing from the generational effects of residential school abuse .
The issue of true Shamanism and what Animism truly is as well. 
The topic of Animism again connected to the abuse of plants , animals , water etc. 
Animism means soul life , truly meaning we believe all creation every little spec has soul & spirit . 
I find a common mistake people make is wanting to give other beings human qualities or characteristics . Just as we like to do it for gods & goddesses .
All species have soul yet all species are unique and have their own identity . all have levels of intelligence , I personally think probably more intelligent then the human species but that is comparing and it conflicts with seeing things as unique beings .
In true Animism we are to treat plant , animal as beings of knowledge and not assume we somehow know the plant better than the plant knowing us . 
To truly know why an animal or plant is calling us to come work with them requires patience & respect . Respect to just keep quiet , calm and wait most of all. 
As a lay folk person I am appalled at the misuse of plants for so called journeying in what is labeled shamanism but it is not . 
True Shamans journey with just the help of plants being able to follow and journey with a plant does not mean consuming the plant .
most people who continuously use so called flying ointments to travel are not truly doing so . 
Plants such as psychoactive ones are rarely used and when they are it is only for specific ceremony and purpose .Often only once or a few times per year .
If one continuously uses plants by consumption then they no longer are aware of if they themselves are journeying with spirit or is it a chemical reaction in the brain .
true Shamans have forms of helping travel such as fasting ,dance, Shake tent , Drums , Rattles , elements .
Another thing a few of us are thinking is these so called witches recipes , where did they come from ? 
If they were written down was the purpose for self use or by chance to distract and lead an enemy to use something that may mess them up ? 
I honestly do not believe any recipes are written down . Why ? Because honestly think about it , Medicine peoples , Cunning Folk were often people living a reclusive life , country folk , wisewoman . People in communities valued their knowledge . And common folk did not read nor write . During the Inquisition there was in fact a printing ban during certain periods . paper was very scarce . would common country wisewomen have paper , ink and pen ? would they know how to write ? 
yes there is chance knowledge was passed down but if so it would've been done orally not by written word . 
Anyway it is my guess the wisewoman of Europe the Shamans etc. worked with plants without the consumption of them in order to travel . 
I see core Shamanism as yet just another thing people lost want to belong , people with big ego get boosted and of course a way to make a big dollar .
My mentor says she never accepts money she teaches for free and it is my duty to now teach . 
this is great affirmation for me because I too have always struggled with the concept of money . 
Bartering is a different story because we all have gifts to share .
 A bit about the painting , it is Black Spruce in our world and the spirit world and the light in between . Black spruce is used to help us enter into the two worlds to connect both . this is often done via placing the resin on the fire . 
So Black Spruce is the tree I use to enter both worlds . The light in between represents balance & peace . 
The staff with feathers represents honour , wisdom respect and the Eagle feathers are a sign from above from  the other world to help us see . 
I'm not sure now what I'll do with the painting , the vision was stuck in my head and I had to get it out into this world . sort of like a shopping list ;-)
so now what ?
Be patient , go on , keep packing for the lake and just go on with life .

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for writing this. As someone who has been very drawn to shamanism, I always felt uneasy reading of the practices of those who use psychoactive plants to aide in their journeying. That's all I'll say about this because that's all I know - I just don't get a good feeling about it.

    I have taken core shamanism courses and there was a point when I knew it was informative, yet not a real practice. You cannot "practice" shamanic healing on those who are not ill.

    But I continue to practice - and hope that the spirits will guide me as I am done with organized "workshops." Perhaps I will be fortunate enough to find a real teacher.

    And yes, the money thing. While I do understand that a fair exchange is good, I also have seen that whenever that exchange is money and more specifically, a large sum of money, it changes things - from the spiritual to the commercial. No, we can't give everything away for free, but spiritual people must also consider that they are called to provide a service even for those who cannot compensate them. I am discouraged and sad at the "business" that spirituality has become.