I carry out customised, one-to-one training in shamanism, shamanic techniques and shamanic healing at my home in Glastonbury, Somerset, and via sessions on Zoom.
I’m always happy to give a free phone consultation to help us both find out exactly what would be right for you. But before contacting me, please read on here first to help you clarify exactly what you are seeking.
“Annie, if I become a shaman, will I be able to help people, to heal them?”
I get asked this a lot … and I always reply: “Well, yes and no. And at first, no.”
The first requirement from you as a trainee shaman is encapsulated by the rubric: “Physician heal thyself.”
Shamans blaze a trail for others to evolve along through burning up their own pain and trauma, and for that reason, they are often called the Wounded Healer. Until then they, just like everyone else, have no means or power to help others, no matter how many courses they’ve gone on.
Shamans can ONLY heal through healing their own woundedness first. This means many a long night facing the Shadow, and not flinching when it shows you what needs to be done. The processing work may not even be solely about the you in this life. Shamans are also required to do ancestral healing and so you may have to first deal with woundedness going back many generations, and which is still manifesting itself in the present – alcoholism being a classic example of the kind of vampiric disease that doesn’t end with the death of the alcoholic.
Only when you have processed enough of your own wounds will you be ready to help others and, at first, you will be amazed how those who come knocking on your door are needing help and healing for what you have just faced and dealt with. After a while, you come to expect it and stop bothering to advertise. You realise that the spirits are sending you just the right people who are ready to walk the path of the trail you have just blazed into being.
What is a shaman and what does a shaman do?
In order for you to progress in this direction, you will first need to know what a shaman is and what a shaman does, because we’re really not like anyone else. Shamanism is a technique through which we contact intradimensional beings, known to our ancestors for hundreds of thousands of years as the spirits. Shamanism eventually morphed into the Mystery religions and then was driven completetely underground by the Roman Emperor Constantine in the 4th century CE.
Shamanism, or shamanic healing, is making a comeback today and I’ve been a practising shaman for a number of years.
A shaman is someone who crosses into other dimensions where he obtains information, guidance and healing from the benevolent entities that he meets in those dimensions. These entities have been given many names throughout history — devas, spirits and gods to name but a few. The shaman then brings this information, guidance and healing that he gleans from these entities back to his tribe or community.
The shaman crosses into other dimensions while in a trance state. This is what’s known as the shamanic journey. It is not a physical journey. The shaman’s physical body does not go on a journey. If you saw a shaman crossing into another dimension, all you would see is his body prone on the floor looking like someone who’s asleep — except for the occasional twitch as power surges through him.
The trance state is also known to scientists as the theta state. They have found that if a person is exposed to a certain rhythm (between 4 and 7 beats per second), their brain will enter the theta state. This is why shamans use drums, and the beating of the drum is the usual, classical way that a shaman enters a trance — although there are many other ways, including the ingestion of psychotropic herbs (datura and ayuhasca, to name just two).
The shaman lives in two simultaneous realities: the inner dream space in which spiritual encounters transform perception of the external world, and the external world which becomes the stage on which the shaman acts out his divine purpose as healer. Each time the shaman enters trance for the good of patients and community and confronts the agents of affliction, there is psychological integration for the shaman. The shaman brings together heaven and earth, spirit and humankind. Shamanism appears in every culture. Amongst Tibetan people, it predates (and is woven into) Buddhist philosophy and practice, and is a vital and living wisdom tradition practiced from ancient times into present day.
From the Ghe-Wa (Tibetan Death Rite) for Pau Karma Wang Chuk Namgyal, by Larry Peters (for Shaman’s Drum.)
Why am I not called a shawoman?
I am not called a shawoman because the ‘man’ bit of the Siberian word ‘shaman’ does not refer to the male of the species. So it is not a gender specific word and that’s why a bunch of shamans are not called a bunch of shamen. The correct collective noun would be a bunch of shamans. Or a gaggle of shamans … or something like that.
Anyway, as mentioned, the word ‘shaman’ comes from Siberia. But thousands of years ago, there were shamanic practises of one kind or another all over the world, in every populated country. And so the shaman and shamanism was known by many different names, and it might be useful to know a few of them, so if the word comes up in different cultures, we’ll know what they’re talking about.
Andean (Quecha) shaman — P’ago
Arab (pre Moslem) — Baksylvk
Australian shamanism — Wulla-mullung
Australian spirit — Budian
Bedouin form of shamanism — Fugara
Celtic shaman – Druid
Chinese shaman —Tang-ki
Hawaiian form of shamanism — Huna Kane
Indian Vedic shaman — Rishi
Indonesian shaman — Dukun
Inuit shaman — Angakok
Jewish shaman — Baal Shem (in Hebrew, it means “Master of the Name”)
Korean female shaman — Mondang
Korean shamanic initiation — Nae-Rim-Kut
Lakota spirits — Wakan Tanka
Meso American shaman — Nagual
Mongolian shaman – Boo
Nigerian shaman — Babalawo
Norse female shaman —Voelva/Volva/Vala/Seidhkona
Peruvian shaman —Sheripiari
Siberian shaman – Shaman
Tibetan shaman — Pa’wo
Tibetan shamanism — Bonpo
Turkish shaman — Sahir-þairl
Ukrainian female shaman — Znakharka
Voodoo female shaman — Mambo
West African spirits — Kontomblé
So how can I help you?
There are lots of articles on here about the different sorts of healing that shamans do, and to make it easier for you, I’ve listed the main ones below. Basically, shamanic healing would not be the ideal first port of call for mending a broken leg ~ it’s more about restoring the health of your mind-body-spirit continuum and overcoming all the obstacles that no longer serve you in your life’s journey, and it is transformative, rejuvenating and revolutionary. If you’re feeling like you’re in the doldrums, shamanic healing will kick start your life.
If you’re new to shamanism and shamanic healing, please do check out these articles as they will give you a good grounding in the subject and also a better idea of what a shaman or shamanic healer can do for you.
If you think you may be born to this path, this video, Are You Destined to become a Shaman, will give you more information that will help you decide.
Fire in the Head, is about what a shaman is, and how being a shaman differentiates us from other spiritual healers.
How To Get A Camel Through the Eye of a Needle is about shamanic counselling, or learning to journey to get advice and healing from your own spirits. This is something I can teach you how to do.
Eating People Is Wrong is about how the shaman can help you reclaim your power after it has been stolen from you.
What Becomes of the Broken-Hearted? is about another role of the shaman, that of soul retrieval, in other words, finding and returning a lost soul fragment to you, after it got lost or was stolen.
The Way of Brigit – An Ancient Route to Self-Transformation is about initiation into the Underworld.
The Weather Shamans of Waterworld is about shamans that control the weather.
The Journey of Coming Forth Into Day describes how part of the role of the shaman is guiding the souls of the dead to their next destination.
The Never-Ending Journey is a personal account of how I became a shaman.
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Read about the ancient Mystery Teachings to find out how they can inform your life today.
Learn about what shamanism is, what shamans do, and how you can receive training.
Discover another dimension to your love-making that is healing and spiritually transformative.