Monday, September 19, 2016

Is Shamanic Energy Healing for You? Rev. Norman W Wilson, PhD What is healing energy? First and foremost, energy healing is not new. Nearly every ancient culture had some form of energy healing. A form of energy healing can be found in both Eastern and Western religions. Archeological evidence suggests such healing is at least 40,000 years old. Traditionally, energy healing meant the realignment of the body’s physical energy to promote healing. Today, still relying upon the realignment of body energy, energy healing is viewed as an alternative approach to contemporary medical practices and is also viewed by many medical professionals as complementary. All things are energy. This includes all plant and animal life forms. This energy is generated by the vibration of the molecular structure of these life forms. Quantum physics tells us that all things are in a constant state of movement. A wide number of things can cause a disruption of that movement resulting in illness, physical or mental. The healer’s job is to realign the patient’s energy so the body can heal itself. There are several healing approaches currently available. Among these are the following: • Reiki • Qigong • EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques and sometimes called Tapping) • Biofield Energy • Therapeutic Touch (TT) • Spiritual Healing • Faith Healing (Laying on of hands) • Yoga • Meditation • ARCH (Ancient Rainbow Conscious Healing) • Visualization • Chakra Balancing • Shamanic Healing Much is being written about shamanism. Many people are taking courses in shamanic healing to become shamanic practitioners. Others are going on vision quests in South America, in Nepal or in Tibet. Please be aware that these people are not shamen. Going through training programs offered by various institutions doesn’t make one a shaman; it makes them healers. Such programs train people in energy manipulations. In actuality, this is similar to the manipulation carried on by a chiropractor. The focus here is healing practices carried out by a shaman. Like other healers, the shaman makes a determination about the patient’s conditions. He or she may do this by moving his/her hands over the individual’s body. The shaman may then use sound to realign the patient’s body energy. Drums, flute, rattles and the human voice are the sound producing instruments used by a shaman. Their vibrations aid in the realignment of the patient’s energy. A wide variety of herbs may also be used in the form of teas, poultices, salves, ointments, or oils. Unlike many other healers, the shaman can and does travel to other realms to seek the help of the spirit world in healing his/her patient. Whatever the shaman does, it is energy based; either realigning the patient’s energy, restoring energy through the use of herbs and herbals, or transferring energy from him or from the spirit world. Two cautionary notes are appropriate at this point. Whenever you choose an alternative healing approach make sure you consult your medical physician. A second caution is that all of the alternative healing approaches are faith based. You must have faith or believe the healing approach works. ©Norman W. Wilson, Ph.D.

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Shamanic Out-Of-Body Experience and the Computer Norman W Wilson, PhD Altered states of consciousness have various descriptors including trance, hallucination, or hypnotic state. Whatever the description there are certain identifiable traits or characteristics. As a shaman travels to another realm, he or she may experience any number of these characteristics. Chief among these are the following: Different sense of time Change in emotional expression Dissolution of the boundaries between self and environment Visual imagery A sense of the ineffable. Out-of-body experience This last characteristic of an altered state of consciousness has made international news. Contemporary researchers claim they have developed virtual-reality avatars to simulate out-of-body experiences (Feb. 17, 2011. The Guardian, UK). The group successfully 'projected' people into digital avatars that could move around in a virtual environment. According to the group's report, the participants experienced the digital body as if it were their own. The study did not address the altered state of consciousness created through hypnosis to allow an out-of-body experience. Nor was there any indication of an emotional change in the participants. The Telegraph (UK) (Feb. 18, 2011) reported "Out-of-body experiences are just the product of a confused mind and that scientists now claim they have dispelled this myth by artificially creating an out-of-body experience using computers and cameras." Neurologist, Olaf Blanke of the Brain Mind Institute of Ecole Polytechnique Federal de Lausanne, Switzerland, reported the study at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Even though both reports are interesting, neither expose the fact that the participants were aware they were using a computer program, and this may have impacted the assigned results. There is room to raise significant questions about the claimed role of the senses, particularly those of sight and touch in creating an artificial illusional world. The shaman while in an altered state of consciousness senses his movement from one plane to another. Persons going through an out-of-body experience sense personal physical movement. When it is a shamanic created altered state of consciousness, however, all the senses come into play. Advances in 3D production techniques and the availability of 3D television do not create the same experience as a shamanic trance. In the 3D experience, the person is the observer and is affected visually, for example, ducking because it appears something has been thrown at him. In this experience as in the experiments carried on in the Blanke study, there is no operative control by the participant. The shaman, however, is in control and directs his involvement. There is one additional difference between the computerized experience and the shamanic experience. The shaman seeks answers to a question for help with a person who is suffering, whereas the other, entertains.
THE SEVEN ATTRIBUTES OF SELFHOOD Norman W Wilson, PhD We come into this world as a self and over time, there are significant developments in what constitutes that self. Leaving behind the myriad discussions about the ego, superego and the id there still remains an area worthy of thought. First, what is an attribute? Simply, an attribute is any characteristic that distinguishes. To become complete, the human being needs to embrace certain attributes to attain wholeness. There are seven attributes of Selfhood. Attribute One: Mindfulness---Mindfulness involves being aware of all existence and not just one's own existence. This is different from the Buddhist tradition and Contemplative Psychotherapy training generally referred to as sitting meditation. Being mindful of all existence means respecting that existence, paying homage to the rights of all living things. One should look at all existence as an act of creative beauty, and to hold a reverence for the food one eats as well as those other acts necessary to nourish yourself. It is more than 'do unto others as you would have them do unto you,'—it is a total awareness of your own existence as well as of all extant things. Attribute Two: Delightism---Delightism, as it is used here, is not Tantra Delightism and not erotic focused. Once the state of mindfulness of all existence is achieved, begin to examine its created beauty. Delight will come to you. This is a bit tricky here because it involves more than the pleasure principle. A genuine appreciation for all that exists from the micro to the macrocosmic realities of all that there is, is essential. It is the Maslow "ah ha" experience of self-actualization, the Eureka, the satori of joy. Accept each blade of grass as a thing of beauty, each existence as a unique work of art. Get involved in that uniqueness, and you will find delight in that existence and maybe—just maybe you will experience a sense of the divine itself. The fundamental question is not "why" but "why not?" Accept the lowest among the low. Even the ant has its place and value. Attribute Three: Doubt free---Achieving a state of freedom from self-doubt is essential if one is to experience the final four attributes of Selfhood. This is perhaps the most difficult to achieve since the culture in which we live breeds self-doubt, negates the value of self-worth, and preaches a homily of self-sacrifice before an altar called the common good. It is a culture, which creates the illusion of freedom and of choice but in reality, wants total conformity. Being doubt free means freedom from all self-negation, freedom from the abyss of nothingness, freedom from the reductionism that prevails throughout the culture. Have no doubts as to your self- worth, the value of that which you call your own person. Accept the interconnectivity of mind and matter as the expression of Selfhood. To do otherwise, creates dismay and unhappiness. Attribute Four: Love---The attribute of love flows naturally once you have arrived at the first three. Love, and here I am talking about much more than sensual pleasures, and they are important and have their place and value, but love that means giving value to all that exists, beginning with the Self and extending outward to all things big, small, living and non-living. The potential to love all existence is limited only by a refusal to achieve the first three attributes of Selfhood. I say refusal because that means a rejection of the value of Self, and that condemns you to a depraved agony and a mode of self-destruction, which produces an automaton. As these four attributes are realized, the fifth arrives more silent than sea fog rolling in off the ocean. And like that fog, it engulfs you, totally and completely—bathing you in a newfound realization that only a sense of Selfhood can provide. Attribute Five: Centeredness---One must have a central axis of inward calm and steadiness; that is, emotional stability. The absence of a personal centeredness results in a loss of pleasure in living. Without being centered, there is a loss of a fully developed selfhood. Do not confuse selfhood with egocentricity. They are different. Egocentricity is a corruption of the Self and should never be a life's goal. In yoga, for example, one comes to the center through various meditative techniques. Attribute Six: Actualization---Maximizing one's abilities and determining one's life path involves mental consciousness; that is, awareness. Further, this involves connecting to the collective consciousness (The Akasha Record) and manifesting through a union of mind, body, and spirit. In essence, you are to make reality. What a man or a woman can be, he or she must be. It is written in the Akasha. To achieve that becoming, the five previous attributes must be in place. Attribute Seven: Peacefulness---Once you master the other attributes of Selfhood, peacefulness flows naturally from the center of your being. As value and worth of the Self are openly expressed, there is a wellspring of contentment that rushes over you—a fullness that can only be expressed by singing out, "I am that I am." And so you are!
THE SHAMANIC SPIRIT WORLD AND ARCHETYPES Norman W Wilson, PhD The idea of spirits most likely has existed since the beginning of time. Cave drawings, pictoglyphs, and rock paintings dating back thousands of years have shown this belief. Burial mounds with offerings to the spirits offer further proof of that early belief. The world's mythologies and religions are a living composite of this world and the other world—that world of the spirits. Carl Jung's archetypes, those pre-existent latent prototypes of things of the material world, are internally developed patterns of being. They are archaic primordial types with universal images that have existed from the earliest times. Psychologically, they are of the mind. This is not startling because the mind creates the world. Jung's task of drawing a relationship to mythology was relatively easy. However, establishing what an archetype is psychologically and physically is not so easy. At its very least, an archetype is a hypothetical model; that is, a pattern of behavior. Significantly, it is an unconscious content, which awareness and perception alter. As a concept, archetypes appear early in recorded Western history. Philo Judaeus referred to Image Dei in man, meaning "God-image." The idea is in Irenaeus. It appears in the early book called Hermetica, and in Dionysius, the Areopagite. St. Augustine references "idea principales." Earlier, Plato set forth his "pure forms" which some have called non-material forms. Archetype, then, is a paraphrase of early ideas relating to the immaterial, that is, no substance. Certainly, this is a reference to the spirit world. For Jung, archetypes indicate the existence of definite forms in the psyche, and these are always present. In shamanism, this equates to spirit guides or spirit animals sometimes called tutelary spirits. Jung tells us that just as the archetypes occur on the ethnological level, they are in every individual. Its effect is always strongest; that is, they anthropomorphize reality most, where consciousness is less active. By that, he means the archetypes are prevalent at the subconscious level. The shaman goes into an altered state of consciousness to open the portal to the spirit world. For the shaman, this is a willful calling forth, a conscious act.
The World of the Shaman is Changing Norman W Wilson, PhD Briefly, a shaman is one who engages in altered states of consciousness to access the spirit world. Generally, this engagement is for healing purposes. However, sometimes the engagement is not for benevolent reasons but rather, for malevolent considerations. Whatever the intent, shamans believe they are a direct intermediary between the human world and the spirit world. This notion embraces the shamanic acceptance of unseen spirits permeating the world. Furthermore, they believe these spirits directly influence human life and destiny. The word "shaman" originates from the Evenk language (Tungusic) of North Asia and arrived in the west during the 16th Century. Public image of the shaman has been of an aboriginal person dressed in animal skins and other regalia. That is not necessarily true today. Blue jeans may very well be the attire of choice. Clothing is not the only change evolving around shaman and shamanic practices today. In spite of efforts to bring shamanism into the 21st Century, the traditionalists are experiencing a worldwide revival. Areas such as Mongolia, Central Asia, Siberia, Europe and the United States are enjoying this revival. Shamanic centers have sprung up in England and the United States. Shamans generally work as singles; however, one of the significant changes in the shaman's world is the increase in organizations. These 'unions' have established working conditions and fees paid for services. One such organization, The Golomt Center for Shamanic Studies, (Ulaanbaatar) boosts a membership of over ten thousand. Another organization, the Society for Shamanic Practitioners is located in Colorado. One shamanic aspect remains steadfast. Shamans strongly feel they exist to serve the community and because they believe the cosmos is a unified whole and that all things are connected, that community may be worldwide. Certainly, one of the more significant changes is the adaption of the Internet, the creation of websites, and blogs. When combined with advertisements in newspapers, magazines and journals, shamanism emerges as a growing source for spiritual, psychological, and physiological healing. A source, citing links to shaman in many of the states is http://www.shamanlinks.net/Shaman_Links.htm. Dr. Wilson is the author of Shamanism What It's All About, The Shaman's Quest, The Shaman's Transformation, The Shaman's War, The Shaman's Genesis, and The Shaman's Revelations.
THE SHAMANIC SPIRIT WORLD AND ARCHETYPES Norman W Wilson, PhD The idea of spirits most likely has existed since the beginning of time. Cave drawings, pictoglyphs, and rock paintings dating back thousands of years have shown this belief. Burial mounds with offerings to the spirits offer further proof of that early belief. The world's mythologies and religions are a living composite of this world and the other world—that world of the spirits. Carl Jung's archetypes, those pre-existent latent prototypes of things of the material world, are internally developed patterns of being. They are archaic primordial types with universal images that have existed from the earliest times. Psychologically, they are of the mind. This is not startling because the mind creates the world. Jung's task of drawing a relationship to mythology was relatively easy. However, establishing what an archetype is psychologically and physically is not so easy. At its very least, an archetype is a hypothetical model; that is, a pattern of behavior. Significantly, it is an unconscious content, which awareness and perception alter. As a concept, archetypes appear early in recorded Western history. Philo Judaeus referred to Image Dei in man, meaning "God-image." The idea is in Irenaeus. It appears in the early book called Hermetica, and in Dionysius, the Areopagite. St. Augustine references "idea principales." Earlier, Plato set forth his "pure forms" which some have called non-material forms. Archetype, then, is a paraphrase of early ideas relating to the immaterial, that is, no substance. Certainly, this is a reference to the spirit world. For Jung, archetypes indicate the existence of definite forms in the psyche, and these are always present. In shamanism, this equates to spirit guides or spirit animals sometimes called tutelary spirits. Jung tells us that just as the archetypes occur on the ethnological level, they are in every individual. Its effect is always strongest; that is, they anthropomorphize reality most, where consciousness is less active. By that, he means the archetypes are prevalent at the subconscious level. The shaman goes into an altered state of consciousness to open the portal to the spirit world. For the shaman, this is a willful calling forth, a conscious act.

Saturday, May 04, 2013

THE NOSTALGIA THING



THE NOSTALGIA THING
Norman W Wilson, PhD
The Internet is awash with power point presentations of old cars, boats, ships, airplanes, storefronts, and movies and their stars. Nearly every day I receive at least one nostalgic email. The Woody Allen movie, Midnight in Paris, explored the idea of going back to a golden age, a time when all was right with the world.  And all of this made me wonder why there is such an influx of feelings for days gone by—a longing, if you will.
In a bygone era, people flocked to the vaudeville theaters and then to the movies. During hard times, movie theaters filled with people looking for a respite from the drudgery of their daily lives. Comedy, musicals and westerns were always popular.  With the arrival of television came the idealized version of the American family.  Father Knows Best, Mama, Ozzie and Harriet, and Leave it to Beaver are just a few such shows. Our Miss Brooks represented the American high school.  Today, we talk about the Golden Age of Rock, and we have a throwback to vintage clothes and parades of old cars, trucks, motorcycles, and photo montages of gas stations and gasoline pumps.
Romance novels with other century settings are among the most popular books read. Books with settings in an earlier Scotland, England, France and the American west fill the shelves at bookstores, box stores, and at airports. The Harlequin Romances are ever popular, holding some 40 per cent of all paperback sales in North America.
A casual look at these eras reveals a world at war, in a depression, or struggling with an identity crisis. Times are tough. We are engaged in a decades long war, gone through an economic upheaval,  have experienced a decline in the job market and a seemingly unending spew of vitriol; we turn to a time we THINK was better thus, nostalgia.
Is nostalgia bad? Not necessarily, but it is indicative of an unhappy population. It is a warning sign that things are not right with the world.   The next time you are in a 'good old days' mood, ask yourself why you are unhappy. The answer may surprise you. We fail to realize we look back with a jaundiced eye. The old saw, "you can't go home again," is true.