There exists a yearning deep within many of us to reconnect with the natural world. It is a call to a life lived in balance and awareness of spirit, of nature and of self. We all know there is more to know and experience in life and we are ready.
This desire has led many to the practice of Shamanism, which has been reintroduced to us over the past fifty-five years. Indigenous cultures are resurfacing their ancient identities after being suppressed for many decades and longer. Real answers to healing and living are found in these traditions that will help us now.
The word Shaman refers to a man or woman of medicine who is called by the spirits to a path of service. The term originated with ancient Siberian lineages but is currently used in the West to refer to all types of medicine people, reaching commercial status.
An abundance of classes teach shamanism in a weekend, an evening or even over several years and now even online. People have come to confuse familiarity with some of the tools of the Shaman with being a Shaman. This belief is not only mistaken but also dangerous.
A SHAMAN OR PERSON OF MEDICINE IS CALLED TO SERVICE
One does not choose to be a Shaman; the “spirits” call you. Some are called through their lineage from their birth family. Some are called, initiated and trained by teachers and guides in spirit and/or flesh from childhood.
Some Shamans are born into an everyday family only to discover they are ancient Shamans returning to do their work again and assist at this time. This awareness of who they are illuminates why their lives and perceptions have always been so unique and why they have had challenges in the everyday world. These people hold a deep inner knowing of the ancient knowledge and truth that is timeless. All three of these progressions are signs of true Shamans.
The role of Shaman is a ministry like a priest, guru, monk, minister, lama, sheik, rabbi, nun or other orders of spiritual service. You renounce your life, as you know it, to live in service to the people. Being a Shaman in today’s world is much overrated.
A Shaman walks the razor’s edge of sanity, working with the seen and the unseen, bringing the darkness to light. It takes precision, knowing and sight. Having a high level of awareness allows truth and lies to be known. It demands a daily commitment to relinquish attachments in order to heal and work from a neutral space. Yet it is easy and natural when it is who you are, in total balance and alignment with your soul.
People have asked me why I chose to be a Shaman, I was born a Shaman, a woman of medicine, and it was organic since I was a child. The discovery of the fullness of it occurred at the age of forty after my children were nearly grown. No one was more surprised than I that I was a Shaman and yet with my life journey and abilities it made perfect sense.
I was ready to live who I was as I opened up more each day as I was called to service and work with many Masters, Shamans, and healer-teachers from many lineages around the world. I found I naturally knew much of what was taught and could take it farther immediately. It was an adventure of trust as I awakened so fast and lived on many dimensions at once.
It is a very challenging path to walk and we are tested continuously. Living the work means trusting, letting go and allowing life to unfold in its own way. If you want to be in control of your life, you are not answering the call of the Shaman.
In its truest form, a Shaman is a calling of spiritual and healing mastery. It requires you to work with the forces of darkness and light as healer, teacher, messenger, magi, guardian, warrior, executor and manifestor as required. A Shaman heals themselves and is the medicine.
A Shaman remembers the knowledge in their bones of truth, beauty, health, happiness, and light. Some of the work is seen in the world but most of it is in the unseen. A Shaman who does not answer the call to action or one who acts outside of natural and cosmic laws may pay the price in unhappiness, illness and even death.
If you call yourself a Shaman you had better be trained, abilitized and prepared to work in the dark and the unseen. There is no room for ego, divinely inspired is the highest path.
A HISTORY OF SHAMANISM
Legend tells us that Ancient Shamanic Lineages began, as did all peoples and religions, in Siberia and surrounding areas from Afghanistan to Tibet. Peoples became nomads from here and moved to all corners of the world taking unique pieces of ancient knowledge with them.
Each tradition has some of the gold. Experiencing the unique offerings and teachings of each tradition helped me appreciate the rainbow lineage of all as one. Each has also acquired manmade rules and practices that separate us from each other and nature. This has created division and power over people and is not natural. Now, it is time for our joining to heal the world and her people.
Because of this diffusion and adaptation, there is now much confusion about the correct way to do certain practices. Many different groups or indigenous peoples have their own rules and beliefs. Many say their way is the only way and all else are incorrect, sounding much like traditional religions. Many tribes and ancestries have special words and ceremonies that are best not copied. Without the proper training, you are doing something you know little about and may create true problems for yourself and others.
Drugs are also suspect when used by Shamans. Be aware and safe if you choose this path. People die and can become damaged by hallucinatory drugs. Under professional care, these drugs can break you free from your stuck perceptions and open you to new worlds. What any drugs open us to are suspect and discernment and high-level spiritual work are important to accomplish along with any Shamanic experience. Dependence on any drug can create more problems.
Masterful Shamanic training does not require drugs but teaches you to reach these states and to do powerful work with the spirits by precise training and progression, safely, simply and easily. Shamans can reach these states without assistance naturally.
It is time for us all to live in the unity and oneness that each tradition speaks about. Many people hunger for their natural connections to all of life, healing and happiness.
I applaud the many teachers who assist people to find their natural connections and the ways that work for them. No lineage or tribe owns the circle or the directions or the elements. New Seers, Time Travelers, and Shamans are coming forward with authentic ways of working that are unifying all traditions and not of only a single group or tribe. These pioneers are working towards bringing all of the pieces back together.
NOT ALL WHO PRACTICE SHAMANISM ARE SHAMANS
You may train for years with teachers or groups and never become a Shaman. Many are called to Shamanic practice and perform Shamanic work daily. There is no certificate or degree that makes you a Shaman, although many people offer such things. An initiated Shaman doing their work for at least ten and better twenty years, with excellent results, will then possibly be acknowledged as a Shaman or Man or Woman of Medicine.
SHAMANIC PRACTITIONERS may be trained to do soul retrievals, healing journeys, drumming and rattling, crystal and herbal healings, and work with the elements and use powerful ways to work with the spirits in healing. All of this work and more, is very important, especially now as we move through deep transformational times on the planet.
Many are called to do the work of healing the earth, others and themselves through Shamanic practice. This is important work in this time of earth changes. The more people who answer this call to live and work in harmony with spirit and nature, the more we will all recover our earth, personal healing and world order.
THE WORK OF THE SHAMAN AND SHAMANIC PRACTITIONER
Our current excitement and commitment to healing the earth have many people practicing spiritual healing inappropriately due to inadequate training and innocence. They are opening others, the earth and themselves to greater light but also to infiltration by toxic dark energies. This is why many teachers and healers are getting sick. People do not know what they do not know. Practitioners need the tools and training to develop more clarity and awareness to work safely.
Our ancestors lived a simple life in harmony with the natural world. They knew it could be dangerous to participate in rituals and ceremonies that they were not in full understanding of. They also knew that travel to worlds and beings beyond your everyday sphere may allow your power to be given to others unknowingly.
The excitement that people experience as they discover new ways to heal, meditate, and feel one with the earth and all are important, this is connecting you to your nature.
As clients and practitioners, please use your deepest knowing in your telepathic body to discern appropriateness while you are participating in spiritual and Shamanic journeys, healing, ceremonies, and rituals. All are appropriate for healing and learning only. They are not to be experienced lightly for joy rides and ego satisfaction.
Spiritual healing is safe and very effective when done with responsibility, knowledge, and awareness. A good heart or white or purple or other lights are not enough protection. Knowledge, wisdom, and discernment are important to cultivate and practice every day.
Shamanism and spiritual healing are important and a blessing in our time. Use caution and awareness as to who and what you allow to affect you in your life and in healing groups and sessions.
A SUBURBAN SHAMAN
After years of deep experiences, initiations and training I realized that my calling was to make Shamanism and Spiritual teachings and experiences more natural. I could do healing work without anything like a drum or rattle or leaving my body. I realized that everything is here within our body and aura.
I began to do work while sitting with clients with my eyes open. This makes it more accessible to more people as there is nothing weird or suspect. I am being fully present assisting clients to awaken, heal, and manifest their best life. Deep healing occurs and I teach people to Be The Medicine for themselves with tools and practices.
I found a deep journey practice that is said to originate from Siberian Shamans that I call Soul Shamanism. This practice makes our entire life, body, mind, emotions, spirit, and soul accessible to know and heal in all areas of life. It is an initiation into us and requires teachings to learn to navigate the full expression and transformation available in this practice. I teach this to clients and students who are ready for profound work and we use this for ongoing deeper awakening and learning and healing.
Working with the land, communities, companies, families, and individuals we accomplish great clarity, healing, ability to live and work at higher levels without interference. I support people crossing over as well as staying in the body and complete healing. Helping people align with their true self and live it is the best medicine of all.
SHAMANIC LIFE FOR EVERYONE
Go take a walk and play and relax in nature. Discover your own nature and love your own body and honor yourself. Be aware of the environment and stop polluting the earth. Honor other people, the animals, trees, water, air, fire and everything on this earth and beyond.
Be responsible for your actions. Learn and act with unconditional love. What you say and do affects everyone and everything as energy. What you put out comes back to you manyfold. Have fun and learn to live in health, happiness, truth, beauty, peace, love, and light.
This is a beautiful adventure.
Enjoy the Journey, Janet StraightArrow
Be The Medicine, Live the Power of You!
Janet StraightArrow is a Teacher, Healer, Writer, Shaman, Woman of Medicine, Reiki Master and Practical Mystic. Formerly a Top Real Estate Agent, StraightArrow found her calling at the age of forty in 1992 after twenty-five years of studying healing and spirituality – her innate gifts and dedication to living her purpose unfolded from there bridging the material and spiritual worlds.
Janet assists many people of all ages, from all walks of life, to learn to live in alignment and balance according to their own unique blueprint in today’s world. All of her work is focused on teaching, healing and training people to Be The Medicine, Living the Power of You!
StraightArrow also trains people to heal themselves and others. As a Spiritual mentor and guide, Janet supports your own unique journey and having walked the walk for fifty-years through many traditions and challenges she has wisdom and compassion and understanding to help you live and love yourself through your life and spiritual journey.
Private phone counseling, coaching, healing, and training is available for clients and students from all traditions. Her work Be The Medicine is her mission and purpose to open new pathways to empower all on their journey of awakening and living.
Join her on her facebook pages for Practical and Spiritual Wisdom and Inspiration.
By Janet StraightArrow Updated and reprinted from 2004