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Walking Between The Worlds
Walking Between The Worlds
Techniques of Modern Shamanism Volume One
© Phil Hine 1986
First released by Pagan News Publications 1986
This on-line version December 1998
If you should find this booklet useful, feedback &
comments would be much appreciated. I can be
contacted via:
BM Coyote, London WC1N 3XX, UK
This book is a collection of practical exercises, the aim of which is
to enhance awareness of the world around us. The first part of this
book deals with basic sensory exercises, while the second half deals
with trance states, and some of the basic group dynamics involved
in helping other people into them. Using these techniques will not
make you a ‘shaman/shamanka’, but they are drawing on the
shamanic outlook - which depends from an enhanced awareness of
our environment, and the ability to mediate between the everyday,
and the sacred aspects of our experience. “Walking between the
Worlds” requires that we learn to extend our perceptions from the
ordinary, to see the extra-ordinary which lies within it. Many of the
techniques require group exploration, since it is impossible to grow
in total isolation from others.
Many of the exercises were originally part of the Shamanic
Development Course run by Sheila Broun and myself in 1987. I am
particularly indebted to Sheila, whose continuing work is a spur
towards my own efforts. Also, to the course participants, who gave
much in the way of enthusiasm, criticism, and their own experience,
so that the course far surpassed our own hopes for its success. Also,
I would like to thank Rich Westwood for supporting this project,
and just about everyone to whom I’ve ever written to or talked with
on this subject.
The Shaman is one of the most ancient and one of the most enduring
figures in human evolution. Shamanism is the source of both Magic
and Religion, and as Mircea Eliade put it, is “an archaic technique
of ecstasy”. Its structural elements can be traced well back into the
Upper Palaeolithic era, and these elements are essentially similar
throughout many different cultures, in different frames of time. Even
though the surface details of the shamanic world-view tends to differ
even within particular cultures, the underlying principles remain
similar, supplying some elemental requirement of the human psyche
which has remained constant over a period of hundreds of thousands
of years.
Shamanism shows a remarkable survival, and there are many
examples of shamans co-existing with other religious or magical
systems in a given culture. Most of the world’s healers are shamans,
for example. As societies evolve into more complex forms than that
of the hunter-gatherer, the roles that the shaman fulfils is taken up
by others. From shamanism arises theatre, religion, magic, art, dance,
music and perhaps even writing and language. traces of shamanism
remain, in folklore, customs and myth - deference to those who can
manipulate the hidden forces of the world as tricksters and healers.
Westerners are increasingly turning to shamanism in a search to
revitalise and reintegrate themselves into a world-view which is
beyond that offered by our culture.
Until fairly recently, interest in shamanism was limited to those
researching into ethnology and anthropology; and psychoanalysts
such as Carl Gustav Jung. Now it seems that shamanism is suddenly
very popular. Business managers are sent on weekend courses that
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