Tag - shamanism

The Way of the Lover by Ross Heaven

Self-help books could be among the most hated texts among nowadays readers. I myself take part of the never ending ranting when the subject arises, and I’m sure I’ll keep doing it for some time. However, I’m pleased to see that not every book in the genre is as dull and boring as the popular norm seems to dictate.

The Way of the Lover: Sufism, Shamanism and the Spiritual Art of Love,” by Ross Heaven, has given me a thousand, valuable quotes that make me believe that not everything is lost when it comes to life and love, and that even death and hate, concepts I’ve been so friends with for a long time, are anything but enemies of the first ones.

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I particularly enjoyed the fictitious, short stories that came between the chapters, as they served the purpose of a better way to understand what Heaven explains. For people like me, avid lovers of fiction, it becomes clearer and easier to get the point by a short, yet entertaining plot with simple characters.

Divided in four major chapters that explain the art of loving and believing in the Divine, Heaven takes the time to illustrate the point and the different cases in which the teaching came in form of personal experiences or someone that told them. The style in which all of it is written also tried to remain as poetic as possible.

Because of that last aspect of the book, the reading process became heavier and thought at some points, making it hard to keep track of what was being explained in this or that chapter. Despite the efforts, “The Way of the Lover” confuses the reader more times that the acceptable, no matter how important the section can be, as you feel unable to go to the next page.

This path of ups and downs in the prose is somewhat irritating, but reaching the end and see all of the potential in Heaven’s book is worth the wait. In artistic terms, this a perfectly imperfect book, but as for hardcore readers, it will be better to have a clear idea of what they’ll encounter inside: teachings from poet Rumi’s work on how to be a better version of themselves.

It bothered me a little that there was not that much material, substance about Sufism, but keep in mind that the belief itself in not the main subject, but the art of love and how Sufism and Shamanism touch the same teachings at some point. Readers must have a previous background on both topics to fully understand “The Way of the Lover.”

As a final word, it can be said that its final teaching is nothing but dull, proving that despite the flaws, Heaven has given birth to a great book that will help more than one when the time is right. This is one of those readings that need their own time and pace to be enjoyed; the same goes for their teachings to be incorporated in life.

The Way of the Lover: Sufism, Shamanism and the Spiritual Art of Love
Print Length: 224 pages
Publisher: Moon Books (September 29, 2017)
Publication Date: September 29, 2017

About the author:

Ross Heaven is a shaman, psychologist and healer and the director of The Four Gates Foundation, one of Europe’s leading organisations for the preservation and teaching of indigenous wisdom. He lives in Newhaven, UK.

About the reviewer:

Bader Saab is a digital journalist and self-published writer; a solitary, eclectic wiccan interested in the darker side of magic and divination; a gothic guy that tries to educate whenever he cans. Hopefully, someday he will succeed in one of them.


World’s First Shamanic Journey and Energy Medicine Online Video Course Announced

LightSong School of 21st Century Shamanism and Energy Medicine (“LightSong”), a Portland, Oregon-based organization dedicated to the cultivation of thriving, interlaced communities of well beings, announced today that it has launched the world’s first online video course that teaches Basic Shamanic Journey skills.

The groundbreaking course, which is entitled, “Through the Rabbit Hole: Explore and Experience the Shamanic Journey and Energy Medicine,” is led by Lightsong’s founder and acclaimed Shamanic practitioner and teacher, Jan Engels-Smith.

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With enthusiasm, clarity, care and skill, Engels-Smith guides students on an immersive and interactive journey in which they:

  • Learn about the meaning, tenets and concepts of Shamans and Shamanism
  • Discover how this ancient practice has evolved throughout the ages, and into the 21st century
  • Learn about non-ordinary reality, Spirit Allies, and the Universal Laws of being human
  • Perform simple, yet powerful exercises and use supplemental audio to unlock a world of energy and potential
  • Develop their right brain function by opening their heart, thinking outside of box, and balancing their mind
  • Apply time-tested methods to embark on an experiential transformation that shifts dreams, purpose and desires
  • Have their senses awakened and prepare for their first shamanic journey
  • Ultimately realize how they can apply the principles of Shamanism in their daily lives

“For many years, I’ve had the privilege of teaching this powerful and ancient skill to thousands of students in a classroom environment,” commented Ms. Engels-Smith. “Our new course finally makes this essential knowledge available to a global audience.”

More information on LightSong’s new online video course “Through the Rabbit Hole: Explore and Experience the Shamanic Journey and Energy Medicine”, which is also available in book format (print and Kindle), is available at http://lightsong.net/through-the-rabbit-hole-video-teaching-series.

For all other details including student inquiries and media requests, contact jan (at) lightsong (dot) net.

About LightSong School of 21st Century Shamanism and Energy Healing:

Led by its founder and acclaimed Shamanic practitioner and teacher Jan Engels-Smith, LightSong School of 21st Century Shamanism and Energy Medicine is dedicated to the cultivation of thriving, interlaced communities of well beings through the exploration and practice of shamanism and alternative energy medicine. The school offers the first accredited energy medicine curriculum of its kind, including a program for students seeking their Doctorate degree in Shamanism (Sh.D.). Learn more at http://www.LightSong.com.


Shamanism: An Introduction To Working Within Unseen Worlds

by Robert Owings

All spiritual practices maintain some form of connection to unseen worlds, be that Buddha fields or the heaven promised so prominently in Christianity and Islam. In some regard shamanism is not that different; however, where those religions offer the unseen world in an afterlife, shamanism opens those realms in this life as well. Plus, it’s a vastly more expansive, animated, and interactive version to the concept.

Shamanic practice has been described as crossing the veil, walking in other worlds, and a direct spiritual engagement with spirits, deities, and other realms. Naturally, such processes bring one into contact with unseen worlds, and the beings that populate these domains. It’s been going on since day one, since that first proto shaman took on the work.

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A more contemporary interpretation of these beings is to refer to them as energies. These energies often come with different purposes and causality, meaning their own agendas. The description and nomenclature for these energies can be gods, goddesses, demi-gods, exalted teachers, bodhisattva, astral beings, guides, wise ancestors, guardian angels—to less anthropocentric beings such as plant spirits, power animals, the spirit of a forest or river, planetary archetypes, tricksters, demons, hungry ghosts, aliens and hyper-dimensional beings, and so on and so on. One might be advised to be prudent in selecting which energies to align with and such.

Most shamanic practitioners use their engagement with unseen forces for gaining an ally: a being who will assist them in acquiring knowledge, expanding their shamanic powers, and providing protection from harmful forces, be those of the physical or ethereal variety.

To those uninitiated, this might all sound absurd, a by-product of superstition and ignorance. I don’t blame anyone for dismissing this as delusional. And that’s all fine, until you personally have that first encounter with some disembodied being that resonates with intelligence and purpose. Then you have a choice: either to repress the experience and refuse to further unpack what happened, or to go further and possibly establish a working relationship with this spirit being.

So much of all of this is daunting to the modern mindset because we have been so acculturated to the construct of monotheism, which is an unseen force unto itself. We’re just not accustomed to allowing our perception to accept the diversity of what’s active in the Universe, preferring to package it all under one over-simplified expression of Divinity.

One of the effects of shamanic consciousness is that it fractures this limitation, opens the mind to a vastly more complex and sophisticated worldview. Herein one may engage with a larger reality or many realities, and gain a glance into hidden domains that suggest a far greater multi-sphere, a holographic complex with unfathomable intelligence and interconnectivity than ever imagined in our mundane world.

There’s no simple map to these domains—quite the opposite. The more you journey to such realms, the more of them you discover exist. The same holds true for those beings who may be encountered during these experiences.

Which brings us back to working with unseen forces and being diligent with whom you may align. This is where it can be ever so beneficial to work with someone who has experience with such things. The sort of core guideline for working with these energies is using an objective view as to how this relationship is serving you and the world. Here’s where that common mantra, “For the greatest good for all,” can come in handy, which of course makes you look hard at your own motivations.

Now, if you want to engage at a deeper level, that’s a whole other kettle of fish. There are those who are called to do so. This brings a more expansive engagement and can require taking on responsibilities that can be subsuming. I would suggest some deep personal reflection before signing up for that work. Yet there are those, who come into such work not of their own choosing, but are drawn to do so by Spirit. The protagonist in my trilogy is such a person—we share that in common.

About the author:
Robert Owings is an explorer of consciousness and the author of the novel, Call of the Forbidden Way, the first book in a forth-coming trilogy published by Cosmic Egg. Learn more, receive the first chapter for free, or order the book at www.robertowings.com.


New Book is Manual for Shamanic Healing

Villoldo with Peruvian ShamanWe all know people who have received a dire medical diagnosis. Perhaps we have had this experience ourselves. One response is to look for a miracle, willing the threatening illness to disappear. What we get instead in western medicine are drugs and invasive surgeries – often with serious side effects. However, there is another way.

On the heels of his national bestselling One Spirit Medicine, published earlier this year, psychologist, medical anthropologist and practicing shaman Alberto Villoldo offers a rare glimpse into the mysteries of energy medicine. A Shaman’s Miraculous Tools for Healing shares 12 stories of desperate clients who stepped outside their comfort zone and gained far more than they bargained for.

Each chapter alternates observations and treatment notes by Alberto with the first-person account of each individual, as told to co-author Anne O’Neil. The clients reached out to Alberto for a variety of physical, mental and emotional ailments, and the treatments he applied demonstrate a different aspect of energy medicine. During private sessions, clients are taken on healing journeys unknown to modern science. The outcomes not only improve their health but also heal their souls and point them toward their destiny.

A Shaman’s Miraculous Tools for Healing is ultimately about people realizing their own truth. When they embrace shamanic energy medicine, they begin a journey of healing and self-discovery – one they eventually understand they had always been seeking. In the end, these individuals came to know their authentic selves, and this realignment of body and soul resolved much of their original health crises and enabled them to change their lives.

About Dr.Villoldo

Medical anthropologist Alberto Villoldo, Ph.D., has studied the shamanic healing practices of the Amazon and Andes for more than 25 years. In 1984 he founded the Four Winds Society, which offers extensive education in the philosophy and practice of energy medicine, training students to become modern-day shamans.

In his mid-20s Villoldo was the youngest clinical professor at San Francisco State University, where he founded and directed the Biological Self-Regulation Lab to investigate how visualization, energy and psychosomatic medicine change the chemistry of the brain. He soon realized that the microscope was the wrong instrument to answer the questions he was asking. Other scientists were already studying the hardware, Villoldo wanted to learn to reprogram the system.

He heard stories about people in remote parts of the world who claimed to know such things, including the Inka in Peru – among the few remaining shamans. After initial research, Villoldo decided to personally investigate this ancient culture in order to learn about the 5,000-year-old energy medicine known for healing through Spirit and light. Recognizing this investigation would not be a part-time pursuit or brief sabbatical, Villoldo resigned his post at the university and traded his lab coat for hiking boots and a ticket to the Amazon.

Scattered throughout the remnants of the ancient Amazonian empire were a number of sages or “Earth Keepers” who practiced the ancestral healing methods. Alberto visited countless villages and met with scores of medicine men and women. The lack of a written body of knowledge meant that every village brought its own flavor and style to the healing practices that still survived.

For more than 10 years, Villoldo trained with the jungle medicine people. Along the way, he discovered that his journey into shamanism had been guided by his personal desire to become whole. He learned to transform old pain, grief, anger and shame into sources of strength and compassion.

Villoldo later trekked the coast of Peru from the mysterious Nazca lines to the sacred Shimbe lagoons in the north. At Lake Titicaca, “The Sea on Top of the World,” Villoldo collected the stories and healing practices of people from whom, legends say, the Inka were born.

Over the course of two decades with the shamans in the jungles and high mountains of the Andes, Alberto Villoldo discovered a set of sacred technologies that transform the body, heal the soul, and can change the way we live and die. He learned that we are more than flesh and bone – we are absolutely fashioned of Spirit and light, surrounded by a Luminous Energy Field whose source is located in infinity. This unending Luminous Energy Field exists in every cell of our bodies, acting as a matrix that maintains our physical and spiritual health and vibrancy … it is up to us to recognize and work with this gift to change the very nature of our living

A Shaman’s Miraculous Tools for Healing
By Alberto Villoldo, Ph.D., with Anne O’Neill
Hampton Roads Publishing Company
Release: November 1, 2015
Contact: [email protected]