Re Interpreting Shamanism for the Modern Seeker:
Entering the Imaginal.
The term shamanism is believed to derive from the Tungus people, a tribal community in Siberia. A shaman was an individual who maintained a connection to a world beyond the physical waking reality. Like a medicine person the shaman was believed to possess the power to heal illness, communicate with otherworldly spirits and deities, as well as acting as a psychopomp in escorting the departed to another world. All this was accomplished by turning on an inner eye of perception, of journeying to an inner world where mental imagery brought alive another reality. The access to this inner world is accomplished via a process called journeying, traveling from the external tangible waking reality to an inner reality. We can call this process “Entering the Imaginal.” Each night when we sleep we enter this imaginal reality to walk upon the dreamscape reality. In the morning we may or may not remember our visits. Yet the night visits upon the dreamscape differ from intentional “shamanic” journeying. With the imaginal/shamanic tradition we intentionally shift our consciousness to enter this other reality. The great psychologist Carl Jung termed this process “active imagination.” Imagination is accessing mental imagery. Unlike fantasy imagination aids us in creative problem solving and in personal growth. Re Interpreting Shamanism for the Modern Seeker is a two year program for the serious truth seeker who wishes to become fluent in the language of the Unconscious as it rises during the altered state of the imaginal journey. Like the pilgrim on the physical plain it takes dedication and time to become familiar with the territory.