What is a Power Animal?
Before we are born, we receive a Power Animal, also called a Spirit or Totem Animal, who act as ‘guardians’ for us. Sometimes we may receive two Power Animals.
Our Power Animal energetically journeys with us through our entire life, unless we go through a major change in life or direction and then one’s Power Animal/s may change.
Animals have certain attributes and behaviour. The message and significance of your Power Animal is the nature of the animal. For example, the Dolphin symbolises playfulness, harmony and balance, while the Bear symbolises strength, confidence and leadership.
Your Power Animal journeys with you to remind you of your innate strengths, as well as to teach you how to overcome the challenges and changes that you may face in life.
Each Power Animal has specific guidance, knowledge and power to share.
What is Shamanism?
Shamanism is the oldest known healing practice on earth. Some say the origins of Shamanism are 100,000 years.
Before the creation of formalised religions, our ancient ancestors honoured a deep and respectful connection to Mother Earth and the spirit world beyond. This relationship acknowledged the elements; earth, wind, fire and water, and the world of ancestral spirit guides and animal, plant and stone kingdoms. Through this connection they not only sought answers for their everyday lives but for direction, purpose and healing.
Shamanism is practiced on every inhabited continent. It is not uncommon for indigenous shamans to also practice religion.
Today, we know of Quantum Physics. Scientists recognise that everything in the Universe is made of energy. In fact, energy is the building block of all matter. All that is, is made of energy and all is connected by energy. The energy that composes your body is the same that composes the stones in a wall, your car, a table, animals, flowers, trees and water, and all that exists. This energy is constantly flowing and changing form. This has been called the ‘Universal Law of Perpetual
Transmutation of Energy’. And it’s everywhere!
Shamanism accepts that everything has an energy, a spirit and that all is connected by energy, or
spirit. And as such, honours a deep connection to Mother Earth and the spirit world.
- Reminds us that everything has a spirit, an energy
- To walk lightly upon the earth
- To respect and honour all beings and Mother Nature
- To show gratitude.
What is a Shaman?
The word ‘shaman’ originates from Siberia and translates as, ‘one who sees in the dark’, or ‘healer’.
The Shaman in ancient cultures would journey/shamanically meditate to non-ordinary reality to seek guidance for the clan or tribe.
The Shaman believed that everything is connected, that everything has a spirit or energy and they would walk between the two worlds of reality and the spirit world to seek guidance and healing from Power Animals, the Elements (Air, Fire, Water and Earth), the Spirits.
The Shaman would use drums, rattles, stones, feathers, sacred herbs, to help in this work.
In this modern world, not everyone can apprentice with a traditional shaman or become a traditional shaman. With training, it is possible though to learn the sacred practice of shamanic techniques to use for the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health help of clients. This not only has the potential for healing on all levels but a can bring a sense of peace and empowerment, increased energy and vitality.
What is a Shamanic Journey?
The simplest answer is that a Shamanic Journey is similar to meditation, although different in many ways.
In a Shamanic Journey an intention is set.
To the rhythmic beat of a shamanic drum and or rattle, one can journey to the Lower World where we can meet our Power Animals, animal allies and spirit guides.
We can choose to journey to the Middle World, which is the non-ordinary reality of our earthly world. Or we can journey to the Upper World is where we can meet our ancestral elders and spirit guides.
What is a Shamanic Practitioner?
Someone who acts as a bridge or messenger between the human world and the spirit worlds. They work to bring balance to a client’s energy and to shift stagnant or blocked energy which ultimately aids in healing both emotionally and physically.
A Shamanic Practitioner also journeys/meditates on behalf of and/or with a client to seek guidance on issues affecting the client which can vary from depression, apathy, anger to addiction and a feeling of emptiness, and much more.
What are the tools of a Shamanic Practitioner?
A Shamanic Practitioner may use a few tools in their work, depending on their individual expression, as well as what work they are doing.
Generally Shamanic Practitioners work with a shamanic drum, rattle, feathers, herbs, possibly crystals and stones.
- The Shamanic Drum:
Sometimes called the Shaman’s Horse or the Shaman’s Canoe and is generally made of a round timber rim and rawhide skin and is played using a beater with a soft, padded head.
The Shamanic Drum represents your heart and the rhythmic beating of your heart, also the rhythmic beating of Mother Earth.
The drum, in different forms, has been used for thousands of years across the planet in many different cultures. The drum marked the passage of time and event, such as a birth, death, the change of seasons, a farewell, a call to action, a gathering of community and clans or tribes.
Traditionally shamans, bards and healers used the shamanic drum as a means of travelling through different realities to access guidance and healing and send forth intentions.
The drum beat is particularly beneficial for our heart as well as our kidney and bladder function, and thus our ability to feel, to express, to cleanse and allow things to flow.
For shamanic journeying/meditation the drum is played 3/4 beats per second. The drum beat helps to bring one out of their head, down-to- earth, and into their feelings and connection with Mother Earth.
The drum is used to journey for guidance, healing, for cleansing an aura, to send intentions, to dislodge negative energy and emotions.
The drum connects us to our primal rhythm and beat.
Used to help shift energy, to call in Spirit, can be used in ceremony for blessings.
- Prayer Feather:
Can be used for smudging or cleansing with smoke. Prayer feathers are also used in healing, ceremony and rituals to carry prayers, messages, intentions, and feelings to the spirit world.
Cleanses the aura. Anything can be smudged, from people, to pets, homes, offices, vehicles, personal objects. Sage, cedar, sweet grass and certain herbs are burnt and the smoke is used to cleanse.
What is Shamanic Healing:
Based upon the premise that everything is composed of energy and that all is connected, shamanic healing accepts that all healing has a spiritual aspect to it. Thus, all is connected – the emotional, mental, physical and spiritual. What affects one aspect, may very well affect another or all aspects. If one area of our life is out of balance, this imbalance can affect
one’s energy, causing it to become blocked or stagnant. Like blocked drainage pipes, this energetic blockage has a flow on affect, often causing illness or emotional unease.
The aim of Shamanic Healing is to re-align the natural flow of one’s energy and remove energetic blockages.
During a Shamanic Healing, a Practitioner may journey for guidance as well as use Shamanic Practice and tools, such as drum and rattle, to assist in rebalancing the client’s energy.
It is important for the client to know that although a Shamanic Practitioner can help re-align their energy, it is also important for the client to take on the responsibility of their own healing, to participate in their own healing, and to encourage their own healing by disengaging from their old stories that have created the energetic imbalance, pain and stress. In this way, the client has the potential to become empowered and then their true healing can manifest.
What is Soul Retrieval?
When a person is confronted with, or experiences an emotional, mental or physical trauma, a part of their soul or life force flees as a survival mechanism.
Many experiences can lead to soul loss, for example; actual or threatened bullying, the death of a loved one, abandonment, a sense of great loss, physical suffering, stress, sexual abuse, an accident, behaving against one’s beliefs or ethics, being exposed to a natural disaster such as a fire, earthquake or hurricane, violence, surgery, addictions or divorce.
Put another way, to survive a traumatic experience, part of our soul may flee and this causes a disassociation within the person.
In shamanism, we accept that the missing part of the soul flees to a place called, non-ordinary reality, or the spirit world.
What is The Shaman’s Tree?
Also called the World Tree.
Within the World Tree, the three worlds of Non-Ordinary Reality can be accessed. The three worlds are:
The Lower World - the roots of the tree
The Middle World – the trunk of the tree
The Upper World – the branches of the tree
“The shadow side of your past will always hold you captive, only if you allow it.”