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Switch to Forum Live View Does Shaman = Teacher?
6 years ago  ::  Jul 30, 2008 - 3:30PM #1
kraventhearcher
Posts: 170
In another thread here (Drugs and Shamanism), it was mentioned that being a Shaman and being a Teacher are the same.
Do you hold this to be true?
If so, why? If not, why not?
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 01, 2008 - 7:30AM #2
kraventhearcher
Posts: 170
I say no.
I think that some people hold a predilection for Shamanism. However, not all people are good teachers.
Like me. :-) I'm a pretty horrible teacher.
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 01, 2008 - 12:24PM #3
Whisperingal
Posts: 25,009
Lol.

I know what you mean.

I've been thinking a lot about this question--IMO it's a good one.

It's also quite complicated because so many Shamans traditionally had apprentices and contemporary shamanic practitioners do as well.

Yet I agree that it is not a calling that everyone receives or is suited for.

Additionally--se ewhat I mean about complicated?--it could be said that any time a Shamanic practitioner passes on info that has been revealed to them in journey--that they are functioing as teachers for those who receive the info.

What do you think about that diea?
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 01, 2008 - 2:08PM #4
kraventhearcher
Posts: 170
I think that's a great question/idea to present, that's what!

Sure, I'd say that anytime you share an experience, pass along a message, or even tell someone about Shamanism, you're both teacher and student. As most teachers are.

I gave a message to a guy about 4ish years ago. I had NO idea what it meant. Turns out, he did. And, he explained things to me in detail including detail that I hadn't marked as important (oh, look. a carrot plant or whatever) that turned out to be pretty consequential. He was a Shaman of some experience and that was one of the only times I ever really talked nakedly about Shamanism with him. And, he died very shortly afterward.

I stopped doing journeys for about a year after that it freaked me out so much. I think up until that point I'd been using it like a spiritual ferris wheel ride. Though I took it seriously, it wasn't "real" until then. 

When I started again, I took it MUCH more seriously.

So, yeah I'd say that formal teaching isn't for everyone. It's a calling. Though, really I see a teacher as someone in a storefront or operating a program. Guess I need to broaden my definitions a bit. :-)  Or refine them.

Though, I don't think that I've ever had anything in my life that is so constantly humbling and so filled with constant learning as Shamanism. And, I've bitten off some big things in my life.
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5 years ago  ::  Feb 14, 2009 - 4:48PM #5
Moonsmith
Posts: 81

kraventhearcher wrote:

In another thread here (Drugs and Shamanism), it was mentioned that being a Shaman and being a Teacher are the same.
Do you hold this to be true?
If so, why? If not, why not?


I know this is an old thread but it seems to be one which has been ignored. Yet I also feel it goes towards the heart of many of the Neo-Pagan and Neo-Shaman types of things which are out there.

In my opinion they are vastly different things. I rather find it strange that they would even be considered in the same breath.

Learning the techniques of what people commonly call shamanism from a more traditional perspective, it was usually as folks learn most ceremonial ways in indigenous culture.

The majority of the Neo-Shaman types I have seen and dealt with have learned in a less than traditional manner. This is not unexpected really, as they come from the dominant cultures. Many in the West learn from Harner or one of his followers and the organizations he has put together, from what I understand.

Others I have met and worked with who are more traditionally trained, hail from the Tribes of Central and South America. And I have met one who has studied the Siberian Shamans though she is not a Shaman herself. And of course Native American Traditional Healers, Wisdom Keepers, Medicine People, Curanderas, Faith Keepers and Story Tellers.

But not all of these are Teachers. Some are excellent in their chosen area. But unless they were forced to, they would not consider teaching these things. Teaching also is a calling. I don't know anyone who teaches (this type of stuff) in the manner of the Dominant culture. Students and a blackboard, that kind of stuff. No, mostly I see it as either individual students or small classes dedicated to specific subjects or even not specific subjects. Or guided meditation or experiential in nature through nature and all the tools available there.

To me, Teaching is a separate thing altogether.  I have seen those who would be be called 'Shaman' as spiritual Teachers, yet who never teach their Shamanism...

Clear as Mud?

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5 years ago  ::  Feb 14, 2009 - 7:05PM #6
Spidertotem
Posts: 84
The way i understand the definition,a shaman is a person who has had experiences that were completely"outside"of their body,or  communes with the spirits regularly.That does not obligate them to be a teacher,but they are in a sense a teacher because people have traditionally gone to shamans for help,wisdom and advice.I would like to think a shaman would choose to be a teacher if that suited them,but its true that not everyone is suited to be a teacher.Some people will do better being solitary.IMO,a shaman is a person who has learned to touch the divine and unseen,and that is a wonderful gift that should be shared with others.Its hard to answer this because everyone is unique..even someone who is walking a shamanic path could still teach others with the knowledge and wisdom they have learned,so I would have to say shaman and teacher are the same.Its just up to the individual what their level of involvement and teaching will be.
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4 years ago  ::  May 14, 2010 - 1:08PM #7
GeoSage
Posts: 13
I was taught and always tesach that a Shaman is a person who has formaly taken on and accepted the role of a teacher. A Shamanic Practitoner is one who utilizes the teachings and methodologies of shamanism without the formality of guiding a student, tribe or community.
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4 years ago  ::  May 18, 2010 - 9:28PM #8
Bairre
Posts: 122

In traditional societies Shamans are often teachers and intrigal parts of the social make up.  However, they are just as often the crazy, old coots that lives way the fuck out in the woods and you only talk to if you have a very serious problem. 


Being a shaman and a teacher aren't mutually inclusive or exclusive.

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4 years ago  ::  Jul 28, 2010 - 10:04PM #9
Tenlionz
Posts: 1,790

A teacher is not defined by a personal ability to teach, but by the ability of the student to learn. Kraven can teach many which I could never reach according to related experience and Spiritual connection's far beyond our ability to understand. This is the reason our life path and destinies are so very individual and unique.

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4 years ago  ::  Jul 31, 2010 - 9:54PM #10
Tenlionz
Posts: 1,790

Jul 30, 2010 -- 8:55PM, Shamanmystic wrote:


i agree with 10lions last post about the willingness of the student.. the best teacher can't teach anything to someone who has a closed mind... as the old and often overused saying goes = "when the student is willing the teacher will appear".. no more water can be poured into a full cup.. i myself being nearly 50 learned long ago that no1 can know everything and the best teachers are generally students ie those with open minds.. ; those with the ability to cut off preconceived ideas / notions  of how this or that should be and just simply be open to experiencing it directly, what ever it is, without bias and really trying to understand it.. this is what zen monks do.. u might try it sometime.. ie cutoff the conscious intellectualizing mind and just experience people, places, and things free of the limiting conceptualizations called labels.. it helps to develop ones attention and really be here now... the human mind can jump all over the place and its a feat of wonder to really get it to focus on something as simple as the person one is listening to without hearing ones internal dialogue formulating new questions or opinions.. its an art in itself just to really listen to someone.. the voice one hears rambling in ones head while listening to another is that sociallly created thing called ego.. if it is ignored ie silenced long enough then one can really hear and understand others... when one truly understands that one knows virtually nothing and this is okay then one is generally open to learning...


as far as teachers go... many have different styles.. the best teachers, in my humble opinion , are the ones that can modify their method to accomodate the students learning style.. some people learn best through words.. others through actions, others via images... he /she who can cast off their own learning style and accomodate the student is far ahead of the "so so" teacher..


 





Well Chukma Shki WG, Although I must say--To manipulate a Student by changing our nature of teaching is a "manipulation" and not true apprenticeship. I was given this tid bit by Clint Forest, apprentice of Red Bird.

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