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shamanism/sha·man·ism/ (shah´-) (sha´mah-nizm″) a traditional system, occurring in tribal societies, in which certain individuals (shamans) are believed to be gifted with access to an invisible spiritual world and are able to mediate between it and the physical world to heal, divine, and affect events in the latter.
a form of healing that incorporates personal healing, transformation, and regeneration through access to a "higher power." Sickness, disease, and illness are indicators that the individual is out of balance and in disharmony within the essential nature. Success can be achieved if people are, first, willing to take responsibility for the creation of the disease and, second, open to nonphysical realities of life and willing to engage with their inner spirit and their higher selves. This type of healing has been effective for sexual dysfunction, chronic fatigue syndrome, mental health concerns, and obesity and other eating disorders.
An ancient spiritual and medical tradition still practised in many tribal cultures, which is based on the belief that healing has a spiritual (i.e., “other world”) dimension. To effect healing, shamans enter altered states of consciousness in order to communicate with other planes of existence, taking a journey to help the patient rediscover his or her connection to nature and the other plane. Shamanism is steeped in ritual (such as divination, dream interpretation and prophecy) and tribal psychology (through drumming, story-telling and chanting).
n a diverse set of ritual healing practices that use trance and spiritual practices for therapy.