What is Shamanism?
I’m certain you may already have formed an idea of what exactly a shaman might look like. And perhaps you think you know what shamans do and what they’re about; but did you ever think that a shaman could be a 43-year-old bipolar woman from middle America? Before I blow your mind, let me give you a brief overview of what Shamanism is and what it isn’t.
Shamanism is not a religion; it is a way of living.
You may be the follower of a certain religion and still be a shaman. Many individuals around the world from a wide array of religious groups are shamans and incorporate their Shamanic practices into their spiritual lives. Shamanism is a way of being. It’s a way of looking at and really seeing the world around you. It’s about connection and the soul, both your own and the souls of everyone and everything else because everything possesses a soul. In fact, shamans are healers of the soul.
Shamans use a trance-like state to visit alternate planes of existence.
Shamans employ many tools to heal, to connect, to look, to see. One of the most important tools at their disposal is communication with otherworldly spirits. The primary method shamans use to communicate with these beings is through a trance-like state during which they are able to visit the alternate planes where these spirits exist.
The Ways Shamanism Affects My Bipolar Life
My Shamanic practice has affected my life living with bipolar disorder in profound ways. Probably the most important way is to illustrate to me that I am not alone with my struggle. Not only do I have my family, my husband Jason and my cat Zephyr as well as my parents and my sister, and a select group of very special friends, but I also have each of my Allies (see below). I have felt like I was alone with my illness in the past and now I’m more connected than ever to a solid lifeline through these multiple channels, because of my experiences with my Allies. This feeling of being connected to someone or something outside myself is so vital to remember, particularly on those bad days when extra support is necessary.
Meet My Allies
My Allies (listed in alphabetical order)
Permission has been granted from each of the Council members below to be freely shared by me with you in all of my writing.
- Angelene — Lady in White — success in business
- Athena — Goddess of Wisdom and War/Owl (Greek) — teacher in all things
- Cherie — Keeper of the Gardens (and also the Muse of Creativity) — creativity, writing, true self
- Hummingbird — the abundance of energy
- Isis — Goddess of Mystery and Magic (Egyptian) — seeing all the magic that exists in the world and learning from it, stability, teacher in all things
- Luke — God of Creativity and Source — my true self
- Meliak — Golden Dragon — teacher in all things
- Morrigan/Raven — Goddess of Birth and Death (Celtic) — teacher in all things
- Nike — Goddess of Victory (Greek) — everything related to addiction recovery
- Pegi — Pegasus (Greek) — choice, stamina, success in business and freedom
- >Queen of the Sidh (Celtic) — tutoring in the magical arts
- Storm — Black Panther — teacher in all things, especially letting go, forgiveness of what I have done in the past
- Teagin — The Blacksmith — teacher in all things, especially relationships and love
- Tehana — Snow Leopard — all things to do with writing and creativity
- Uriel — The Archangel — teacher in all things
- Zara — Zebra — encouragement, accepting and expressing my individuality, overcoming challenges, freedom
To find out more about each of my Allies, please visit the Meet the Muses page.