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Natural Awakenings Atlanta

Urban Shamanism: Connecting to Your Inner Power Amid Everyday Challenges

May 01, 2020 09:00AM ● By Erin Newman
As a rule, people think of shamanism as an esoteric topic, one that doesn’t pertain to the everyday world of jobs, chores, child-raising and commutes. Yet while exploring shamanic realms can be quite mystical and magical, the shamanic path is a practical one: it is intended to get results and offer answers and healing for real-world concerns.

Early shamans were expected to be able to find game, locate fresh water or heal injuries—very real matters of life and death. Yet even though the concerns of modern American life are quite different—how to stay healthy, pay the bills, expand a business, find a calling or lose an extra 10 pounds—shamanism can be a powerful tool to discover solutions and receive healing.
Research supports the effectiveness of shamanic practice for healing body and mind. A 2012 study in The Permanente Journal showed that pain could be reduced with the help of shamanic work, and a report by the American Journal of Public Health demonstrated that shamanic methods can be beneficial to improve psychological outcomes.

Direct Revelation


In order to facilitate healing, shamans undertake a shamanic journey, a process of entering into an altered trance state in order to connect with guides, helping spirits and beings from other realms in order for healing to occur.

Marcia Eliade, one of the first Western anthropologists to respect the practices of indigenous shamanic peoples and to introduce them to the Western world, described shamanism as a process of direct revelation but pointed out that one doesn’t have to be a shaman to receive valuable insights and guidance for one’s life. Such benefits are possible for those who feel called to experience the magic of a journey for themselves and to participate fully in their healing.
The shamanic journeyer begins by drumming or listening to drumming in a frequency range of 4-7Hz in order to enter into a slightly altered trance state. Drumming can be beneficial in lowering stress markers and in fighting addiction, according to a study in the U.S. National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine, among others. Within the altered trance state of a shamanic journey, one can access power animals, guides and allies in non-ordinary reality. An open mind and an ability to let go of the need to know whether the journey is “real” or not are necessary to experience a beneficial shamanic journey.

A shamanic practitioner can also undertake a journey on a client’s behalf in order to help heal the parts of the soul that most need healing. The healing process might include a soul retrieval, a power animal retrieval, the unraveling of a curse, or other healing methods to facilitate the healing.

Some of the most common concerns that can be answered with shamanic healing and journeying include:

  • How can I have a better relationship with my partner/child/coworker? How can I lose weight?
  • How can I make more money in my business?
  • How an I be less angry?
  • How can I be less sad?
  • What am I supposed to do in this situation?
  • What am I not seeing here?

Beginning the Journey


To experiment with shamanic practices at home, start by finding a shamanic drumming track. Look for a steady, monotonous drumbeat at 4 to 4.5 seconds per minute. After becoming sufficiently relaxed, ask to connect with your Higher Self, using whatever wording suits you.

Listen to what it has to say. Ask it how to be more connected and in partnership. Once a partnership has been established, simply ask for help and guidance around your question. Ask open-ended questions, questions that cannot be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.” And then allow your Higher Self to share the next steps for your unique shamanic path.

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Erin Newman
Erin Newman is a money mindset and authentic courage coach for entrepreneurs. Using EFT tapping and ancient healing modalities, she helps business owners move through blocks and create the income they desire. For more information: ErinNewman.com and social media.
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