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Shamanism and Religion

 exploring how Shamanism and Religion are able to co-exist


Shamanism is not a religion nor a religious practice.  It is a broad, observationally based, spiritually oriented philosophy and practice set.  Shamanism has independently developed essentially parallel practices wherever successful pre-industrial societies have occurred. 

Shamanism has no hierarchy, no leaders, no registration boards, no bible or holy scripture/s.  Shamanism does not preclude, dissuade or discourage any religious observances, trusts and/or beliefs in any way. 

The shamanic way [speaking in generalities of course] is one of acceptance, courage and gratitude; it recognises the Holy in everything, the Spirit in everything, the Divine, the Soul and the Base in everything. 

Shamanism seeks ever deepening understanding, knows the futility of absolutes, and holds harmony as one of the four imperatives (necessity, chaos and order being the others Ė discussed a little later on).

Those held in esteem by many modern religious practices including Christ, Mohammed and Buddha reportedly espoused - without an exception Iím aware of - love, harmony, peace and acceptance; the sacred nature of life and the undesirability of disharmony and conflict.  These are the same ideals of shamanism.

One may be a devout Christian, Jew, Buddhist, Moslem, Hindu etc., and follow shamanic practice.  There is nothing in shamanic thought that precludes this.  Any limitations are imposed from organised religionís dogma, not from shamanismís principles.

Shamanic thought does not require one to renounce any part of your faith or religious structure.  Shamanic practice does, however, challenge you to constantly reassess and think about your core beliefs.





© Craig Berry - 1996 - 2010, All rights reserved - reproduction without written permission prohibited.