Norman W. Wilson, PhD
World-renowned author Dr. Alberto Villoldo in Shamanism (Posted January 19, 2016) writes, “The shaman understands that we are attracted to those people that we have to learn with and learn through.” Shamanic teacher and author, Christina Pratt in her podcast, Why Shamanism Now states, “One of the great stressors in life is intimate relationships, both the having them and not having them.” An underlying assumption here is that shaman, male or female, have a mate. Historically, we know sometimes shaman were celibate. We also know early healers often lived apart from their tribe. And too, we know there were shaman who mated.
A shaman’s fundamental philosophical belief begins with respect—respect for all life be it plant, animal or human. There is a keen awareness that many illnesses are fundamentally emotional. These emotional illnesses have root causes such as an unhappy childhood, conflicted core values, low self-esteem, lack of parental love, or issues with one’s made. I am sure you can think of many more causes; however, the fundamental question for our consideration is what the shaman does about it.
The first thing a shaman does when a client comes in for a healing is to make a determination about the nature of the visit: Is it physical? Is it being upset much of the time? Is it the loss of appetite or an increase in weight? During this initial interview, the shaman asks about the client’s love life. This does not just mean their physical love life; it can also mean their spiritual love life. Yes, it does get personal and it does remain confidential. Sometimes, the client’s mate may be asked to come in for an interview. Long practice in the affairs of the heart has taught there is always more than just one side to a story.
Once the core issue(s) is identified the shaman may make any number of recommendations. Among these would be a healing session involving essential oils, herbal teas, and the use of the drum. The purpose here is to change the rhythmic pattern and to bring calm to the client. It is within that framework the client may then resolve the issue. After all, it is the client who does the healing; the shaman simply opens the channels to allow it to happen.