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Shamanic Trance, Altered States of Consciousness & The Collective Trance

Updated: Mar 15

As I delve into the intricate tapestry of human consciousness through my shamanic teachings and practices, I find myself constantly awed by the vast and varied landscapes it presents.


My journey has led me to explore an ancient practice at the heart of our being yet obscured by layers of modern skepticism and misunderstanding. This journey is about the shamanic trance or the altered state of consciousness (A.S.C.), a profound experience that connects us to our deepest wisdom and the mystic realms beyond our everyday perception.


It is pretty fascinating to me, yet never surprising that when I mention my experiences with shamanic trance, the non-expert ears and minds pretend to know what I am talking about and immediately picture some kind of crazy alternative and fringe practices. I sometimes wonder what they picture, while they never had the experience of it in the context of a deeply rooted, wise, and ancient practice, but judge and see my world through the lenses of their own trance, the violent and power-hungry capitalistic and colonial trance. The modern trance. The trance of separation and soulless life.

Shaman Deer Antler Forest

What am I talking about here? In our fast-paced, material-driven world, where power and ego often take center stage, it's easy to overlook the subtle yet powerful forces that shape our reality. It is easy to believe that we know because of the flooding of knowledge on screens, the illusions of human progress through the narrow lenses of capital market numbers, G.D.P., and the exhausting and fake diversity of cereal brands in our supermarkets.


Every day, without even realizing it, we plunge into various forms of trance states. I mean, everyone is in a trance state.


Politics, with its fiery speeches and rallying cries, pulls us into a collective trance, captivating our minds and influencing our beliefs. It makes us blindly follow leaders who throw tantrums, speak like angry kids needing approval, and behave like bullies daily.


Sports events, with their heart-pounding excitement and communal euphoria, transport fans into a shared state of heightened emotion and connection. They often blur the true competition that is really on display on the screen, which is made of money, advertising, and ego.


Even our capitalist culture, with its incessant consumerist messages, lulls us into a continuous trance of desire and acquisition. They say that by age 5, we have seen over 10000 commercials on T.V., all designed by masters of trance and hypnotism.


In addition to the trance states induced by politics, sports, and consumerism, our society harbors a profound fascination with celebrity culture that operates as another trance. This trance is fed by a relentless stream of media, social networks, and entertainment platforms that elevate celebrities to almost mythic proportions. We find ourselves mesmerized by the lives of individuals we've often never met, caught up in their stories, triumphs, and tribulations as if they were our own. This trance is not merely about admiration; it's a complex dance of aspiration, identification, and sometimes even jealousy.


What is the issue with that? It cocoons us in a narrative that distracts and distances us from reality, urging us to live vicariously through figures deemed larger than life. This celebrity trance diverts our attention from our inner journey, the exploration of our talents, dreams, and potential, to an external spectacle, where the value of our existence is often weighed against the glamorized lives of others.


Similarly, our society's obsession with billionaires and the ultra-wealthy represents another pervasive trance state. This fascination goes beyond the curiosity about the lifestyles of the rich and famous; it reflects a deeper trance induced by the ideals of success and power that capitalism venerates. It's a trance that equates wealth with worth, success with happiness, and power with respect. This narrative seduces us with the promise that wealth is the ultimate panacea for all our woes, the key to a life of fulfillment and happiness. It entices us to relentlessly pursue more, trapping us in an endless cycle of desire and dissatisfaction. The billionaire trance skews our values and priorities, leading us to overvalue material wealth and undervalue the richness of our inner lives and the simple, essential connections that truly nourish our souls. It ensnares us in a game of constant comparison and competition, blinding us to the beauty and abundance of our present moment and the wealth of being that resides within us all.


Why does all this work on billions of people? Because we are trance-state beings. This means we cannot only access a trance state, but our lives and ways of seeing the world, thinking, and feeling are deeply governed by those altered states of consciousness (A.S.C.). The dictators know it. Politicians know it. Advertisers know it. Celebrities know it. Everyone who guides your life and decisions knows it.

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