lupagreenwolf recently wrote an excellent personal blog about plastic shamanism and cultural appropriation. One of the commentators posted a link to an excellent checklist contrasting core and classic shamans. Another commenter mentioned that lists can be useful, but they can create division. This got me wondering. Early on in my shamanic path I used the Inca and Toltec material to create a checklist of what a "modern shaman" was. This checklist is probably about seven years old now. This is NOT an official South American shamanism or Toltec shamanism list, nor is it an attempt to define a functioning Shaman, hence I would probably rename it to say, "Are You a Potential Shamanist?" So, with that change, I submit my list. Please provide feedback on where it is weak or what can be added. This is a simple list that does not claim a totality of definition. I'd like to see how this early statement of understanding measures up against my peers' experience. Thanks!!!
Are You a Potential Shamanist?
Below is a checklist summarizing some traits in the Shamanic tradition:
- Have you energetically removed yourself from the restraints of the past?
- Have you energetically faced death and are at ease with the reality of a world beyond the physical?
- Have you learned the symbolic language of the mystical?
- Can you achieve altered states of consciousness?
- Do you travel between the spirit world and the physical world?
- Do you use your skills in service to your community?