What is shamanism?


Because it 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.
— John Matthews, The Celtic Shaman

Through a change in consciousness, Shamans enter “non ordinary” reality to request healing and advice from compassionate animals, humans and other spirits. Spiritual healing is complementary to modern medicine, therapy and training. Often it is the missing link, the wind in the sails that allows healing, recovery and training to rapidly progress.

I practice core shamanism, a distillation of shamanic practices which are common to many diverse cultures. The methods of core shamanism are practiced by modern shamanic healers throughout the world. In core shamanism, the shaman enters a shamanic state of consciousness through listening to rhythmic percussion. He or she then journeys to the world of spirits and connects with spirit allies for healing work. These spirits are available to help everyone, and the shaman’s role is often to reconnect clients with their helping spirits, restoring their personal power.

Shamanism is a spiritual practice found in cultures around the world from ancient times up to the present day. First and foremost, shamans' practices are practical and adaptable. These practices coexist over millennia with varying cultures, systems of government, and organized religious practices. 

Many formalized religions, from Buddhism to Christianity, came from ancient shamanic roots and still bear the shamanic threads of deep connection to the divine in all things. But shamanism itself is not a formalized system of beliefs or an ideology. Rather, it is a group of activities and experiences shared by shamans in cultures around the world. These practices are adaptable and coexist with different cultures, systems of government, and organized religious practices.