Shamanism is the most ancient spiritual and healing practice known to man. In fact, shamanism and shamanistic healing date back to over 100,000 years and have been practiced all across the globe — well before our current technologies of communication were possible. Shamanism is the oldest spiritual tradition on the planet, the ancestor of all spiritual paths. When you trace your bloodlines back through time, back to the continent where your bones and genes originated, you will discover all of your people living shamanically. Our ancestors relied on the practices of shamanism to communicate with the unseen world, locate wandering herds of animals and hidden medicinal herbs, solve problems using spiritual oracles and heal illness. It is because shamanism worked so well that our ancestors survived the rigors and wilds of Paleolithic and Neolithic living. Because shamanism is not an organized religion as such, but rather a spiritual practice, shamanism cuts across all faiths and creeds, reaching deep levels of ancestral memory. As a primal belief system, which precedes established religion, it has its own symbolism and cosmology, inhabited by beings, gods, and totems, who display similar characteristics although they appear in various forms, depending upon their places of origin. The word “shaman” comes from the Siberian Tungus tribe, and means "spiritual healer” or, “one who see in the dark.” In traditional shamanic cultures, shamans were selected in specific ways, often through a near-death experience, an illness (mental and physical), lightning strike or animal attack. They were chosen by Spirit and called into service.
Shamans work with the spirit or the soul. They heal illness at the soul level using techniques such as soul retrieval (tracking the face of a lost soul) . They gain knowledge and insight from working with the spirits of nature such as rocks and trees, the land, and they gain knowledge from working with spirits of animals and humans such as their ancestors. For the shaman, everything is alive and carries information. You can call this spirit, energy, or consciousness. In order to communicate with the spirit or consciousness of these things, the shaman will shift his or her own state of awareness. Most shamans can do this at will or through various means such as meditation, repetitive sounds such as that of the drum or rattle. Some cultural shaman achieve this through the help of hallucinogenic plants. The shaman will then “see” through a new set of eyes, they will see what is going on with you on a spiritual level. The shift of consciousness that the shaman makes, which allows the free part of his or her soul to leave the body. The shaman can then go retrieve information for your healing and growth. They can retrieve healing power, or things that you have lost along the way in living your life. During the soul flight the shaman is both in the room, and going on this “journey” so that he or she has an awareness of both at the same time.
The shaman sees illness as a lack of power because it was lost somewhere in your life. In order to heal you the shaman returns your power to you. She or he may perform a power animal retrieval. A power animal is a protector, similar to a guardian angel, which protects you from harm and helps you with your spiritual growth by lending its power to you.
The shaman also removes misplaced energy. The negative emotions you may feel, or the negative emotions that another can send you are seen by the shaman to be stuck or stored in various parts of you body. An example is how stress causes ulcers or back pains. The shaman will re-empower you by removing the energy that does not belong within your body. This is called a shamanistic extraction, other healing modalities in addition to shamanism practice this in various forms. This energy is not bad, it is just misplaced. Because it does not belong in your body, it is seen as causing illness that then shows itself in a physical way through pain, sickness or emotional difficulties.
In the shamanic system part of the soul is free to leave the body. Therefore the soul parts of each individual will leave the body in order to protect itself from trauma. This is a positive way to protect the soul. For instance, if someone were to be in a car accident, part of the soul would leave the body to protect itself from the trauma of the impact. The soul does not always know how to return, however, and if it has not returned for some reason this is referred to as soul loss. That is when the shaman would become involved, in order to assist with returning this missing piece of yourself. The healer would perform a soul retrieval. In indigenous cultures this was performed quite regularly. In these modern times, a person may go a long time feeling like a part of him or herself has been missing.
Soul loss would be comparable to the psychological concept of disassociation.
Other activities which shamans have traditionally performed include healing the land. For centuries, shamans have been involved with earth healing by using their ability to communicate with the consciousness or spirits of land, bodies of water and other such natural features of their landscape. Whether by determining why crops would not grow in a certain location, or the reasons for drought; working with growing things, the weather, and the land has been a traditional activity for the shaman. They would also communicate with nature to find plants to heal illness. Many shamans are responsible for discovering the healing property of certain plants, which later formed the basis for specific medicines we use in the western health system today.
In most cultures, even in current times, a particular shamanistic practitioner will be gifted in working with one or another shamanic activity. A shaman may be more called to do soul retrieval, extraction, de-possession, to work with death and dying, or to work with the land to name a few. Some will specialize in one.
There can be a wide variety of tools and techniques used by shamans, although certain tools/techniques appear frequently. Percussion instruments such as drums or rattles, plants, water, stones, fires, bones and singing often accompany shamanic work. What is specifically used will vary with the shaman, who must achieve the shift of consciousness, receive information being communicated, and be able to direct the healing by whatever means are most effective for him or her. The same applies to whether the shaman uses hawk medicine or bear medicine. Although all of these things may change the texture or feel of the shamanic work, one is not better than another.
There are certain techniques or perhaps skills that are considered essentially different in shamanic work. Shape-shifting, merging, journeying, and seeing are some of the skills a shaman should posses.
Shamanic healing is, in my view, is the most potent type of healing work anyone can do. Sessions involve deep meditation of the client and journey work through myself using meditation, singing and drumming, diving deep into the world of spirits, gathering information about the consciousness and soul of the client, to discover the root of disharmony and illness. We work to heal these parts of the fragmented soul that have been lost or address the spiritual issues at hand.
The work I do has best results for those that are ready to do their own inner work. This can be challenging and painful to do at times, but, in the end, if our own inner demons are not faced they will end up overtaking our lives. Speaking from my own experience and those of others I have worked and trained with, when we fully engage in our own inner work, when we face, address and unravel our shadows we start shifting our lives.
I love practicing shamanism, its power and beauty continues to amaze me. I always feel so alive when I do this kind of work. One of the things that never ceases to fascinate me is how the work is always different and how it evolves. No two sessions are ever alike. It brings me great honor, gratitude and joy to be able to share this work. My work is very grounded and embodied. I bring kindness, integrity, courage, focus and discipline to all I do. Shamanism teaches us empowerment, personal responsibility and accountability and thus our own healing journey is ultimately our own responsibility. The more we engage with the work, the more gifts it brings us and the more we can become the work. The heart of shamanic healing is restoring balance and harmony. Shamanic healing addresses the spiritual side of a problem. All the work we will be doing is driven by spirit. My role as a practitioner is to surrender so that The Great Healer/Spirit can do what is needed. Spirits can see much bigger and clearer picture than us and amazingly wonderful things can happen when we allow ourselves to surrender into their loving arms. During our healing session you may see me doing various things such as dancing, singing, drumming, rattling etc, but I am only a vessel, a facilitator. Everything that comes and happens, and that what you receive, comes from the Divine/Great Spirit.
Shamanic healing may entail any or combination of the following healing methods
- Soul Retrieval
-Object (weapons) removal
- Energy Restoration
- Ancestral Healing
Please note I don't do any of the above on - demand. All my work is Spirit/Divine driven and guided, and as such, tailored to each client. No two sessions are ever the same. In addition to the above, I also offer drum healing work. Drum healing can be done frequently unlike the in-depth sessions and can sometimes help with the integration work as well. In-depth healing sessions take anywhere between 1.5-3 hours. 2 hours is usually enough time, but sometimes our work can take longer (or shorter). As a result I book appointments in 2 hour time blocks. In-depth sessions are done periodically and are driven by you, the client, as you know if and when you need another healing session. There are also occasion's that this part of the spirit still needs to gain knowledge therefore is not ready to be healed. I allow each journey to speak to me for what is needed. Shamanistic healing can be performed in person (preferably) or remotely, and I work with people of all ages.
We are happy to serving all of Frede Unfortunately at the moment we are only offering remote sessions and have let our center in Walkersville go due to covid19 and financial issues. Contact for an in-person session through email.
rick Maryland, and surrounding areas
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