Shamans, Healers, and Medicine Men [1987/92] – ★★★★★
A comprehensive, endlessly perceptive, & inspiring book on shamanism.
“Shamanism…is not a somehow obscure or incomprehensible or mysterious magical path, but a simple heightening of the emotional experience of the world; “the goal of the shamanic path of initiation is to broaden and deepen the normal emotionality that we all know” [Kalweit, Shambhala Publications, 1987/92: 219].
This book, translated from the German, is by Holger Kalweit, a German ethnologist and psychologist who studied shamans and shamanism in different corners of the world, including Hawaii, the American Southwest, Mexico and Tibet. With concrete examples drawn from the Ainu, Siberian, Yahgan and other shamanic traditions, Kalweit delves into the very heart of shamanism and explains detailly the nature of being a shaman, “a possessor of profound knowledge that cannot be grasped in words”. From shamanic training, testing and rituals inducing trance to shamanic healing powers, and duels and competitions, Kalweit touches on many topics and hardly stops there, elucidating further on such concepts as consciousness, reality, dreaming and on a variety of parapsychological phenomena, including “magic”, visions and near-death experience.Continue reading “Review: Shamans, Healers & Medicine Men by Holger Kalweit”