Introduction to Shamanism – connecting to our heart, deepening to the soul

big treeShamanism is a time-tested system for gaining clarity on pressing concerns, healing the Self, the community and our planet. This is a living, evolving nature based practice.  

It can be traced back through time to the period of our earliest ancestors and this 100,000 year old practice is seeing a resurgence. Shamanism allows us to access a state of awareness in which we can feel and be informed by Spirit and perceive the interconnection with each other and the greater universe.

Shamanism re-connects us to our oneness with everything. But how do we access this elusive state of mystical awareness? Through the Shamanic Journey…..

For many the Shamanic journey brings about a sense of joy – the joy of coming home. It offers a body of practical methods which enable us to connect with and thereby express our own spirit. We can rediscover our own spiritual authority; through communing with ancestral spirit teachers in non-ordinary reality who come to offer us guidance, support and love. Our spirit help may come in the form of an animal, a human, a known figure, a plant or loved one.

“We live in times of challenge and change within ourselves, our families, our aspirations, local issues and global problems. Many of us struggle to make sense of these challenges and in that struggle find ourselves pushed towards an exploration of our ‘Spiritual side’ knowing intuitively that in this exploration we may receive guidance and answers to questions that we carry. But where do we start?”

The aim in this workshop is to offer an introduction to the Shamanic Journey; exploring with safety and support. We will work with the drum, our voices, modern technology and various movement techniques to experience leaving this ordinary reality, journeying to non-ordinary reality and then returning to ordinary reality. On our first day we will learn how to journey for ourselves. Our second day will will be about journeying for community and our land.

The workshop will introduce you to:

    • The history of ‘Shamanism’ of this land, animism, and continuing evolution.

    • The cosmic geography and terminology of the Shamanic world, the Dreamworld/Other-world. 

    • Our ‘departure point’, some call the Axis Mundi

    • Framing your intention- stilling the mind to be ‘hollow bone’.

    • Transfiguration

    • The Shamanic Journey – an embodied experience

    • Meeting power animals, plants, minerals and kin

    • Understanding ecstatic states

    • Journeying for self and for others. 

    • Connecting to the ‘Universal  web of life’, interconnection, oneness.

    • Shamanic Healing.

    • Ethical considerations.

    • Confidence in ceremony.

    • Becoming an Allie to the Earth.

    • And more…….

Once you have experienced ‘journeying’ you may see how it might be applied to your life; supporting good health, connecting with nature and the balance within our planet.

This will not make you into a ‘Shaman’, but give you an introduction to a beautiful and sometimes challenging practice. In the longer term, there will be further opportunities to develop and deepen within the work.

‘Shamanism goes far beyond a primary self-concerned transcendence of ordinary reality. It is transcendence for a broader purpose, the helping of humankind. The enlightenment of Shamanism is the ability to light up what others perceive as darkness, and thereby to see and to journey on behalf of humanity that is perilously close to loosing its spiritual connectedness with all it’s relatives, the plants and animals of this good Earth.’   Dr Michael Harner (Way of the Shaman 1980).

Non Residential Weekend Workshop:

5/6 October 2024 in the Wye Valley [Nr Monmouth, Forest of Dean] £195

This workshop is offered twice a year, after October 2024, next workshop is March 2025

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Past attendee’s say….

”Food for the soul, light for the Spirit’  Dawn Connier 2022

“I did the Introduction to Shamanism course this year with Maxine. It helped to deepen my insight greater into doing a full one year practical course with Maxine. A one year course will give me the support and guidance as well as the gifts of journeying and all that shamanism is and how I can use it in my every day to day life and moving forward, deepening my connection with nature and how I am interconnected in this web of life.  Maxine has a warm, loving approach steeped in her teachings and is deeply connected to her teachings. This shines through her” Christley Jones, 2020 course attendee

“The introduction to shamanism with Maxine was a beautiful experience. I have done a few shamanic courses that have been really good. Maxine’s approach was by far the most explorative and informative shamanic introduction where I learned a world more on the beauty of this wise and loving tradition. Maxine shares a wealth of knowledge and emanates so much love, the essence of who we are. I would really love to explore more of the shamanic traditions with Maxine.” Siobhan Swider,  2019 course attendee

All information copyright ©Maxine Smillie 2024