Becoming one with our Earth
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What is Eco Shamanism?
"With eco-shamanism I think you have created something quite unique and I have a sense that although it appears to be about the Earth, it is not really – it’s about everything, it’s about truth, and Earth is how we experience that because we are human." Tara Byrne
Shamanism is an ancient cross cultural technique used to access the spirit world in order to gain healing, information and advice in our daily lives. Ecology (the eco in ecoshamanism) is the study of interactions among organisms and their environment. Eco shamanism helps bring the spirit of our inner and outer worlds into a closer communion.
"The greater part of the soul is outside the body" - Sendivogius
The practice of shamanism reaches so far back into prehistory that its origin is unknown. Yet it was, and still is, a worldwide approach to spirit that shares similar disciplines and techniques across a vast range of cultures. There has been a resurgence of interest in these techniques in the western world as more and more people experience the profound and life changing consequences they bring. This interest is beginning to change. As we launch ourselves into this new century, it is becoming more and more necessary to see ourselves 'as' our Earth, to see, hear, touch, taste and feel ourselves 'as' Earth rather than being 'on' it. We need to re-engage with the anima mundi, which means world soul, of our Earth, we need to 'become one with our Earth' (click for more on the anima mundi).
We are 'in conversation' with everything in this world, and beyond us all things are in conversation with each other, including our computers and phones, kettles and dishes, trains and planes, not just our trees, rivers, mountains and seas. The photo above highlights a conversation between a tree and a cloud . . . the human photographer was lucky enough to be a witness to it and in that moment also became part of the conversation . . . would it have happened if there had been no human to witness it? That is a matter of perspective and if we are to believe that the perspective of communion between other beings is of any import then we must alter our paradigms, significantly. We, and all around us, are spiritual beings in conversation.
Another aspect of Eco Shamanism is Instinction, as opposed to Extinction. With the advent, or awareness, and concern around climate change, we need systems or perceptions that will help navigate the possibility of becoming extinct. Instinction gives us a different angle on our very existence and relates to the impulse of us as a species, which we call 'the dream of a species'. To find out more about Instinction click.
Eco shamanism helps people back into their bodies, to become reconnected to their animate selves with learning and healing techniques. This journey can be difficult yet when we heal and learn about ourselves we are healing, and more importantly 'being', Earth.
Wren - (a poem about reciprocity and included in Mandy's poetry collection)
Said the human
Wren, why do you shrill so?
Are you not hungry and need to hunt?
Are you not thirsty and seek water?
Why do you stop and sing?
Ah, yes, to fill your heart
and in doing so, fill mine too.
Said the Wren
Human, why do you listen so?
Are you not hungry and need to cook?
Are you not thirsty and seek tea?
Why do you stop and listen?
Ah, yes, to fill your heart
and in doing so, fill mine too,
for I have been heard.
© Mandy Pullen