What is Shamanism

What is Shamanism?

The following is written by our Medicine Woman on staff, Antonina Whaples (Many Faces, Many Names). For more information about her offerings, please visit her Healer Profile here. She can be contacted at 336-769-6510 or antonina@kindredspirits.ws

Who are you and why did you come to this planet? What is your soul’s purpose? What is your unique gift to offer to the world? How will you seek those answers? How will you begin to walk that journey? Or, if you are already on that journey, who will help you read the signposts? Who will help you navigate these new waters of the spirit? Who will support you on the journey to self-discovery and union with the great consciousness?

A shaman is a specially trained individual who can lead you on this path, guide you with love, peace and happiness as light embodied to dissipate the darkness. Well trained shamans know the signs in the forest of the metaphysical. They can track what is lost and bring it back, they can hunt down answers and retrieve what seems to be gone forever. Each shaman follows a tradition passed down through a lineage of ancestors, although that lineage may be different, the heart of the work is the same.

Those who can claim the title of Shaman do so not out of ego, but out of humility. To call oneself a Shaman means that the healer has faced their darkest self and overcome it, and that they are committed to continually putting themselves in right relationship with others.  To say one is a Shaman is to say that one has mastered the strength to overcome the ego time and time again. It is to say “yes, I can show you the way because I have fallen in the pits of snakes, I’ve been caught in the rain and suffered the dark night of the soul, because of this I can show you where to go and where to stay away from. If you become lost I can light your way back with the light and power of truth, love, joy, happiness, and peace. I can help you go into this new realm protected, to find what you need. I can bring you to your goal because I can mirror to you energy of self-worth which I have struggled to achieve. I can see you in your imperfection as no greater or less than myself. I will be your equal and show you how to love yourself”

What is the difference between Shamanism and Alchemy?

Being a Shaman is energetically somewhat different from being an Alchemist. Shamanism is a tradition passed down through lineage from teacher to student, or from ancestors to offspring (through spiritual transmission regardless of physical status of life). Not all healers are Shamans. Many can learn the tools of the Shaman, but not all will die the Shaman’s death and be reborn into that role. Although many are born with the purpose of being a Shaman, not all can claim the title until the Shaman’s death has been achieved. Some Shamans will be vocal about the experiences that lead them to their role. Others will be quiet, respecting traditions passed down by their lineages. No path is more righteous than another, they are just different ways of reaching the same energy. All Shamans who are in right relationship with the world & themselves recognize that they are no greater or less than any other being on this planet – there is no “other”. It is because of this right relationship that Shamans are able to use their abilities for the highest good and to heal others. Those who are considered “dark shamans” are those who choose ego and power over love and compassion and use their power against the free will of others. These individuals are to be prayed for with compassion so that they may see the light again and choose the peace and love of Great Spirit. They should not be confused with “Black Shamans” who were the original indigenous Shamans of Siberia.

The word Shaman/Shamanism was first recognized by Western observers working among traditional herding societies in central and northern Asia, and it is from the language of one of these societies, the Tungus-speaking peoples of Siberia, that the term “shaman” is derived. There is some great debate about the appropriation of the word Shaman by many in the spiritual community. There is even controversy about who should do this work and if some are misrepresenting themselves and their skill sets. I believe, as my ancestors did, that there are those who are called to do this work from their soul. Shamans recognize the soul before all other things, and can see that race, gender, religion, and physical factors of boundaries are not valid separations or ways to distinguish who can or cannot be a Shaman. A true Shaman is one who sees past all of this into the heart of the matter: the soul.

I received my Shamanic training via direct transmission from my ancestors who were Shamans. Through both the day and night dreamtime they have come and taught me their ways, and they are still teaching me to hone my skills. My ancestors come from Eastern Europe and the areas of the Black Shamanism. Because of the horrors of WWII much of my family lineage was lost. My Babcia (grandmother) was awarded the Siberian Cross before her death to honor her survival of the Russian-Siberian holocaust. She has strongly influenced my journey both while living, and now on the blue road of my ancestors. I honor those who have come before me who answer my prayers and questions when I am in need and show me the light on my path, and how to show others this way as well.

What is Alchemy?

Alchemy is something that we all do whether consciously or unconsciously. I believe that empaths are actually the finest alchemists, being able to both feel and set the energy for an entire room. An empowered and conscious empath has the most potential to be truly skilled Alchemist. I read once that Alchemists turn everything into Love. So if you were to ask, “What does an Alchemist do – how do they accomplish transmuting one energy into another?” The answer could take many forms. But the answer underneath is that a consciously activated Alchemist turns everything into Love. The blueprint is Love. My goal as both an Alchemist and a Shaman is to bring you into the light of Love, and to teach you how to transform everything in your life into Love. This is much easier than you would imagine and only requires faith and the discipline to believe in the power of love.

I have seen this power transform the most gruesome devil into the gentlest deer. If you struggle with inner or outer demons, then Shamanic work and Alchemical training can be what activates your inner personal healing and leads you to your goal.

Everyone is motivated to heal by a different reason. Some seek to be happy in their career, their family life, in their relationship to money, success, or physical health. Some have been driven to their knees or hit rock bottom. It doesn’t matter the path, because the energy under each experience is all the same: seeking the true self. No matter what you seek to know, achieve, or become, Shamanic Alchemical healing work can assist you with it.

Personally, I prefer the term “Medicine Woman” for myself, because I use tools in my practice that are not only Shamanic or Alchemical. I also use Herbal Medicine on both the physical and spiritual planes. I highly respect and regard science and use my Herbal training in a clinical way, while also addressing the spiritual aspects of a Client which need support. Together through this work, my clients achieve things they thought were not possible for them: health in its many expressions.

In my clinical practice I combine 5 Element Chinese medical theory, Daoism, Eastern European Shamanism, Alchemy, and herbal medicine to shift clients out of old stuck patterns that can manifest as anxiety, depression, family conflict, existential crisis, insecurity and issues of self worth, fear-driven decision making, career stresses, physical health concerns, and more. I use my energetic tools & ritual to activate the highest expression of the soul’s purpose and instruct clients on how to use their own discernment to truly accept and trust their intuition and inner compass.

Herbal medicine is used as an equal to the energetic work to support the physical body and the organ systems towards its greatest expression of health.

No two sessions are the same, and each of my clients receives the tools and support to enter into a relationship with their inner self properly equipped to explore a space of deep self-trust, self-worth, will-power, fortitude and strength, self-love, and ultimately security and success in all areas of life.

If you are ready to commit to your own well-being and excited to do the work that it takes to walk the path to your inner-self, then I invite you on this journey with me. I would be honored to walk this path with you, guiding you towards honoring and accepting yourself and being balance with all aspects of yourself.

I now have an entire full day available for clinical work, and I am accepting new clients on a limited case-by-case basis. If you resonate with this message I encourage you to answer the call of your heart to work with me in this sacred way. It is time for you to feel joy and happiness!!

Contact me for openings and pricing: antonina@kindredspirits.ws, 336-769-6510