Tag: Spirituality

Healer vs shaman

In a discussion on Facebook a person wrote “I understand that word Shaman is nowadays replaced with the word ‘healer’ ”

I objected. “Shaman and healer are different things – or at least should be.” Of course I was called on to explain how I see it. This is my answer:

A healer works with energy. That’s about it. (Psychics and mediums do other things.)

A real shaman (not the diluted Western version) is more complex. Shamans do healing work too but it’s only part of what they do. The shaman communicates with the spirits on behalf of the community. Many shamans have expert knowledge of medicinal plants native to their area, and often prescribe an herbal treatment as part of the process. Shamans are often chosen, either by their tribe or by “the other side”.

“Shamanism is a religious practice that involves a practitioner reaching altered states of consciousness in order to perceive and interact with a spirit world and channel these transcendental energies into this world.”

Your mileage may vary, this is how I see a healer vs shaman.

Past lives, Consciousness and Oneness

Tom Stine has an interesting blog called “Living from Consciousness” which “has as its primary focus the never ending journey of awakening to our true nature as pure consciousness”. There are interesting posts and great discussions in the comment sections.

Tom wrote Past Lives Ain’t What They Used To Be, about past lives or reincarnation. I joined the discussion and wrote:

The concept of One does not exclude the concept of unique souls with their own memories of past lives. It is similar to fingers on a hand, each have their own story yet they are part of the whole.

Tom answered and wrote:

You are quite correct: the concept of One does not exclude a concept called unique souls. However, in my experience, that is just a concept that doesn’t match experience. When you know yourself as the One, then you realize that there are no unique souls.

Which made me write that:

Using the word concept made my comment too soft..

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.”

I am not an expert. My own experiences of oneness, to know yourself as (part of) the One, are different from yours. It allows for souls and past lives.

To which Davidya added his thoughts:

The key thing to realize about Oneness – it is inclusive. It includes everything – all perspectives, all time, all space, all expressions, all beings. Indeed, the entire universe is but a pearl on the necklace of Brahm.

I would suggest that both Tom and Bengt are correct. If we can experience it, it is an aspect of the One. We can look upon ourselves and see one consciousness flowing through all beings. We can look again and see all beings, each with a past, present and future and unique experience, all within the one. We could say they are just different resolutions or levels of detail.

In the One, you are an individual expression, you are an expression of the whole, and you are the whole expressing through all individuals. You are the doer, the vessel, and the creator. You are the seer and the seen. The free will and the determinism.

You are the silence and light, you are the evil and darkness. You are life itself, moving in all things.

There is no paradox. It is inclusiveness alone.

Davidya commented in Tom’s blog but also wrote at his own blog “In 2 Deep”. I like his comment about the blog name: To, Too, and Two are 3 words that sound the same but have different meanings (homophones). The name of this blog is a play on this with 2 implying “into the deep” and “in too deep”.

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Spirituality made simple

Over at Pick the Brain is an interesting post about Spirituality for Dummies. I fully agree that spirituality does not have to be religious.

Having spirituality simply means believing in something greater than yourself. It can be incredibly powerful to have a sense of spirituality in your life, and very often it can haul you through the difficult times in your pursuit for success, happiness, and fulfillment.

David B. Bohl lists three ways to find your spirituality: going to church, commune with nature and meditate. Nature and meditation works for me, religion does not. I can visit a church as place of peace and calm or because of architecture but religion is not for me.

I work as a coach and agree to the importance of harmony in life as a foundation for achieving other things.

Spiritual and personal development should begin with the goal of creating a better work life balance, enabling you to achieve success in both your personal and professional lives.

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Every Step Is Forward – No Going Back

DailyOM today is about Every Step Is Forward – No Going Back.

There are times when we feel that we are spinning our wheels in the mud in terms of our spiritual progress. This can be especially true following a period of major growth in which we feel as if we’ve gained a lot of ground. In fact, this is the way growth goes—periods of intense forward movement give way to periods of what seems like stagnation. In those moments when we feel discouraged, it’s helpful to remember that we don’t ever really go backward. It may be that we are at a standstill because there is a new obstacle in our paths, or a new layer to get through, but the hard work we have done cannot be undone.

Every step on the path is meaningful, and even one that seems to take us backward is a forward step in the sense that it is what we must do to move to the next level. In addition, an intense growth spurt requires that we rest for a time in order to fully integrate the new energies that have been liberated by our hard work. When we feel we are not making progress, we can encourage ourselves to take a moment to rest. We can meditate more, feed ourselves well, and get extra sleep. Before we know it, we will be spurred on to work toward the next level of our development, and this rest will make sense then as something we needed in order to continue.

Source: DailyOM.

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Way Of The Peaceful Warrior

I was recommended to watch the Peaceful Warrior movie (IMDB) which has a site of its own at The Peaceful Warrior. The plot can be found at Wikipedia.

I decided to instead get the book the movie is based on, “Way Of The Peaceful Warrior”. The author Dan Millman is a former world champion athlete, university coach, martial arts instructor and college professor.

Blending fact and fiction, the story relates an odyssey into realms of light and shadow, romance, and mystery. Guided by an eccentric old warrior named Socrates, drawn to an elusive young woman called Joy, Dan moves toward a final confrontation that will deliver or destroy him.

This classic tale, told with heart and humor, speaks to the peaceful warrior in each of us, moving readers to laughter and tears — even to moments of illumination — as they rediscover life’s larger meaning and purpose. Join Dan on the peaceful warrior’s path. Find out why this book has changed lives.

I picked some quotes from the FAQ-section at Dan’s website that are relevant to my comments:

Life, literature and film overflow with such pairings (a struggling student and mysterious mentor): Arthur had Merlin, Frodo had Gandalf; Mitch had Morrie; Luke Skywalker had Obi Wan Kenobi and Yoda. And I had my Socrates.

According to an old proverb, “Art is a lie that helps us see the truth.”

The student – mentor setup is great, the focus is on the life of Dan the student with Socrates the mentor there to help in the spiritual process. I like the book for its spiritual teachings, they are similar to what I have learned from my mentors. But I would have preferred less fiction, sometimes Socrates gets ‘superhero’ abilities and that is strange to me. Still, the book is well worth reading and gave me some new insights.

I have picked some quotes from the book, pieces that stuck with me.

  • Everything you’ll ever need to know is within you.
  • You do not see your prison because its bars are invisible.
  • To rid yourself of old patterns, focus all your energy not on struggling with the old but on building the new.
  • Once you make your choice, do it with all your spirit.
  • Responsibility means recognizing both pleasure and price, action and consequence, then making a choice.
  • You are rich if you have enough money to satisfy all your desires. (Get more money or simplify life.)
  • It does not matter what you do, only how well you do it.

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.