Shamanism as a way of life

I recently saw an interview with Sandra Ingerman talking about how Shamanism is a way of life. I had no idea what Shamanism was up until I found Holotropic Breathwork 8 years ago. I just thought it was something done a long time ago mainly by indigenous cultures.  

She also talked about how most illnesses today, she believes, is from a disconnect to nature and spirituality. I absolutely have to agree. You see I was brought up in a house that really valued science and hence I went to university to study Biotechnology. This was until I saw the manufacture of plants and how we genetically modify to everything to suit our consumerism and something didn’t feel right for me. It broke my heart in a way I can’t really explain.

Needless to say after that I worked in an office job, paying the bills but drinking myself to death whilst watching the news, for the next 9 years. I sought help for my trauma through psychologists who told me to sort out my addiction first which led me to an addictions psychiatrist who prescribed me pills. Those pills ended up being used in an overdose which nearly took my life. I am grateful for that near death experience and grateful for the opportunity to be reborn so to speak. I cleaned up my act and was on the road to recovery after that. So grateful for my continuing search which landed me at a Holotropic Breathwork workshop.  

My first experience of Holotropic Breathwork opened me up to a spiritual experience of being connected to nature in a way that is hard to describe. I felt myself in every leaf of a tree, as soft as the sunsets colours and as mysterious as caves. The love for Mother Nature was not separate from me. And it changed how I was in the world.  

Grof Transpersonal training have many modules to choose from and one of those is my favourite the Shamanism Module. This opened up a longing that I had felt since I was a little girl. From pretending to step into other dimensions through tree doorways, to paying attention to dreams, the stars and witchy things like ceremonies and altars.

It connected me back to myself through nature. Sandra says, "A shaman is a man or woman who uses the ability to see “with the strong eye” or “with the heart” to travel into hidden realms. The shaman interacts directly with the spirits to address the spiritual aspect of illness and perform soul retrievals, retrieve lost power, as well as remove spiritual blockages. The shaman also divines information for the community. Shamans have and still act as healers, doctors, priests and priestesses, psychotherapists, mystics, and storytellers.

   Shamanism teaches us that everything that exists is alive and has a spirit. Shamans speak of a web of life that connects all of life and the spirit that lives in all things. Everything on earth is interconnected and any belief that we are separate from other life forms including the earth, stars, wind, etc is purely an illusion. And it is the shaman’s role in the community to keep harmony and balance between humankind and the forces of nature."

You will often find me now talking to my amazing Boab tree out the back of my house, collecting nature offerings for our altar with my children or practicing dreamwork. I'm so grateful that I no longer feel so alone, so separate that taking my life seemed like the only option. It feels so natural to be in commune with our great planet and my hope is to help hold space for these openings through our Holotropic Breathwork workshops in Brisbane so that others can get back to belonging to the land and treating our Great Mother with the Respect and Love she deserves.

Much love


For Sandra Ingermans talk please click here

For more info on Grof Transpersonal Training click here 

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