This is an ongoing US and global project to help enthusiasts, scholars, practitioners, and curious parties learn more about shamanic living in a contemporary culture. The space here is devoted to sharing info, experiences and opinions about all forms of shamanic expression covering shamanism's multiple permutations. Among subjects explored are traditions, techniques, insights, definitions, events, artists, authors, and creativity. You are invited to draw from your own experiences and contribute.

What is a SHAMAN?

MAYAN: "a technichian of the Holy, a lover of the Sacred." CELTIC: "Empower the people...by changing the way we think." MEXICAN APACHE: "Someone who has simply learned to give freely of themselves..." AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL: "...a teacher or healer, a wisdom keeper of knowledge... (who) takes people to a door and encourages them to enter." W. AFRICAN DIAGRA: "views every event in life within a spiritual context." HAWAIIAN: "...human bridges to the spiritual world and its laws and the material world and its trials..." QUECHUA INDIAN: "embodies all experience." AMAZON: "...willing to engage the forces of the Universe...in a beneficial end for self, people, and for life in general."

-- from Travelers, Magicians and Shamans (Danny Paradise)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Tradition vs Heritage

Definitions from the Webster's New World:

Tradition: The process of preserving orally. Syn - legend, wisdom of the ages, oral history.

Heritage: Inheritance, birthright, ancestry. The most general of these words, applies either to property passed on to an heir, or a tradition, culture, etc. passed on to a later generation (our heritage of freedom)

I believe that I've acquired my "Wisdom of the Ages" and my unique abilities possibly thru my ancestry line, but "directly from Spirit." It is indeed Spirit's voice and direction that I hear everyday.

The discussion below triggers a similar feeling to the age-old dispute between Religions. I cannot see much difference between the Religions--perhaps, they've blended together in my eyes, connected by a common thread. LOVE

LOVE: Passionate and tender devotion.

Therefore, I'm not sure that I want to spend time dissecting Shamanic Traditions/Heritages.

I'm comfortable with knowing what I know. So is Spirit !


Walks In Two Worlds said...

I like what you say, Heart of the Mother, and I agree. Where the dogma meets the road, there is often roadkill! (i.e. religion!)

At the same time, I have to speak out when Spirit prompts...that is part of my mandate, to bridge the gap. I know what I know, so the death walk arrows do not hit the intended mark. But when clients ask me about the same questions, I have to have an answer that satisfies, because that is part of the healing and trust that is needed to be developed.

Of course, that said, when you can hold the thoughts you just shared with complete congruency (which I think you can!) that energy speaks what needs to be said. People either get you, or they don't!

Thanks for the discussion!

(oh yes, a blogging note to all...if you are posting a comment in response to another post, try not to create a new post altogether. This keeps the threads together.)

Night Sings said...

Like you all, I have not been one for much tradition. I've seen how we've outgrown the ways of old and how the past's hold on us resembles ropes of bondage; how we have grown apart, resorted to violence and mass subjugation, and divided ourselves as a race thanks to the poison introduced by many traditions. That being said, I am torn.

My story has taught me that humanity may also be traumatized by radical believers and individualists who claim to be moved by spirit or going on their "gut instinct" (like our President). They want so desperately to change the dominant order that they resort to shock tactics, or worse, and they forgo the wisdom of the ages in favor of a desperate desire to create a shift in the balance. They may be so gripped by the perceived injustices and errors of past conventions that they RE-act, often triggered by the source of their wounds, and move us sideways, like a heavily armored crab, by creating another order dominated by pain.

What I am after is essence and I wish to identify and understand the essence of goodness, even in traditions that are alien to me. That is why I believe that being students of tradition can enlighten us, the same way students of the arts learn the basic techniques, thought processes and mechanics used by the creative masters of the past. Each one us takes those teachings and does with them what feels right, but the important thing for me is the exposure to a menu of options, getting over my own fear to create from those options, and devoting myself to the craft as a healing tool.

May be there is no time, but there is also a critical urgency for us to evolve not revolve-- it is our nature to develop branches and roots-- so, surrendering to tradition is often a necessity, to me.

Walks In Two Worlds said...

Yes, Night Sings, it is important not to throw the baby out with the bathwater! I would never want to throw out our old traditions, and claim the new is better, or more needed. And what there is no time for is to sit back and say we can't do anything, because we don't have 14 years to apprentice in the jungle. We must work with what is at hand, use our limited time to do all we can (yes, this requires making time, making the effort, for everyone). What I most want to see and build are bridges from the old that WORK in the new, for today. It requires being awake and wise, and that is not in the province of the old only, either.