Introduction to Shamanism
What is a Shamanic Practitioner?
Trained Shamans apprenticed for many years under a master shaman teacher.
All members of communities and tribes who follow the shamanic way of life are familiar with the shamanic world-view and practice fundamental aspects of shamanism. They may communicate with nature spirits, pray in the shamanic manner, honor the plants and animal spirits and perhaps do some healing work.
Most shamans live in remote areas of the world and not in urban centers. It is not so easy for most people to apprentice with a traditional master shaman.
Increasingly shamans of different areas of the world are traveling extensively to bring their knowledge to people living in urban areas on different continents. Although they have not necessarily grown up in a tribal community and have not apprenticed for long years with a shaman in the traditional ways, many people with great talent are adopting the shamanic nature based world view and some have learned a vast amount about healing and other aspects of shamanic practice.
These people are called shamanic practitioners. They have not necessarily gone through an old school shamanic apprenticeship but are skilled healers, ceremonialists, and teachers in their own right. Some few actually have apprenticed with master shamans for years but sensitive to appropriation issues they may choose not to call themselves shamans but rather shamanic practitioners.
It is acceptable to ask the shamanic practitioner what their training and experience has been. A person who has taken a weekend workshop in shamanism or read a couple of books should by no means call themselves a shamanic practitioner. Since these days some do, it is best to be discerning.
WANT TO LEARN MORE?
The Society for Shamanic Practice is a modern day organization that supports those who aspire to follow the shamanic path by providing information from experts in the field through professional journal articles, audios, monthly new moon ceremonies, and opportunities to participate and learn about shamanic practices through conferences and annual member events. Consider becoming a member if you are interested in joining our community and enriching your shamanic practice.