"this is rock medicine, the talking tree, the singing water"
Vision Serpent
This FAQ contains a general overview on Shamanism. It should be read by anyone interested in understanding what is meant by Shamanism and what differentiates Shamanism from other forms of ecstatic experience.

Shamanism General-Overview FAQ

This FAQ contains the charter for soc.religion.shamanism, details of submissions policies, and frequently asked questions culled from the articles that have appeared in the newsgroup.

soc.religion.shamanism FAQ

Shamanic terms and concepts

Find public discussions about shamanism in
the forum or at alt.religion.shamanism

"Shamanic ecstasy is the real "Old Time Religion," of which modern churches are but pallid evocations. Shamanic, visionary ecstasy, the mysterium tremendum, the unio mystica, the eternally delightful experience of the universe as energy, is a sine qua non of religion, it is what religion is for! There is no need for faith, it is the ecstatic experience itself that gives one faith in the intrinsic unity and integrity of the universe, in ourselves as integral parts of the whole; that reveals to us the sublime majesty of our universe, and the fluctuant, scintillant, alchemical miracle that is quotidian consciousness. Any religion that requires faith and gives none, that defends against religious experiences, that promulgates the bizarre superstition that humankind is in some way separate, divorced from the rest of creation, that heals not the gaping wound between Body and Soul, but would tear them asunder... is no religion at all!" Jonathan Ott Mayan shamanic iconography


South American Ayahuasca Practice

This brew, commonly called yage, or yaje, in Colombia, ayahuasca (Inca 'vine of the dead'*) in Ecuador and Peru, and caapi in Brazil, is prepared from segments of a species of the vine Banisteriopsis, a genus belonging to the Malpighiaceae. —Michael Harner

*Inca "vine of the dead, vine of the souls," aya means in Quechua "spirit," "ancestor," "dead person," while huasca means "vine," "rope").

Pablo's Warning: Ayahuasca is not something to play with. It may even kill, not because it is toxic in itself, but because the body may not be able to stand the spiritual realm, the vibrations from the spirit world. Pablo said he had several frightening experiences with ayahuasca. Three times he thought he was going to die.*

One needs courage, a strong discipline, and to proceed by degrees. It is a long process that might take two or three years before one can venture into the higher realms. One needs a teacher that shows the correct procedures, and how to defend oneself against supernatural attack. But after some time, one needs to continue alone, because even one's teacher might become jealous of one's progress and could take away all one has learned.

*Frightening ayahuasca experiences are quite frequent. It is common that people take ayahuasca only once, and are afraid to take it again.

From Ayahuasca Visions by Luna and Amaringo


Common Themes in South American Indian Yage Experiences
Michael J. Harner's 1968 paper The Sound of Rushing Water chronicles the Ayahuasca magic of Jivaro Indians in Ecuadorian Amazonia.
The basic notion exists that ayahuasca
teaches "magic melodies" known as icaros.
In my first experience with ayahuasca in the Amazon jungle, plants of the jungle did appear before me and speak, just as the shamans report happens with them. The problem was that I did not understand their language!
Gracie & Zarkov take
Ayahuasca and visit with an
Indo European Plant Teacher.
A description by a Peruvian youth who was captured by Amahuaca Indians of the preparation of ayahuasca by the tribal medicine man.
Ayahuasca adventures in
the Peruvian Amazon

The Ayahuasca-Alien Connection

From Ayahuasca Visions, The Religious Iconography of a Peruvian Shaman a publication of outstanding paintings of ayahuasca visions by native shaman Pablo César Amaringo, in collaboration with anthropologist Luis Eduardo Luna, Ph.D.

If you wish to experience the full extent of Pablo's visions and Dr. Luna's scholarship you absolutely must obtain a copy of this amazing large format book containing 160 pages and 49 magnificent 10.25" x 8" color plates. Published by North Atlantic Books, 2800 Woolsey Street, Berkeley, California 94705 ISBN 1-55643-064-7

This 2nd edition of this deoxy remix combines excerpts from the text with small scanned regions from 27 of Pablo's 49 larger paintings. The 1st edition contained several errors and omissions, and was not illustrated. Revised 7/23/99

Also see Oversoul As Saucer

  • Lycaeum > Leda > Trips > Ayahuasca
  • Disembodied Eyes > Ayahuasca

    "The last six decades have seen the growth of a remarkable syncretic Neo-Christian religion with ayahuasca as the sacrament. Following humble beginnings in the state of Acre in Brazilian Amazonia, these contemporary religious groups communing with Santo Daime or Chá Hoasca (as ayahuasca is known to them) have grown into major international religious movements with thousands of members. Far from being an aberration or anachronism, these churches, and the African Bwiti religion centered on the entheogenic sacrament eboka, rather represent the future of Christianity, stripped of its Doctrine of Transubstantiation by the Entheogenic Reformation, and with one or another genuine entheogen replacing the placebo sacrament!" Jonathan Ott



    "Shamanism and similar areas of research have gained in significance because they postulate new ideas about mind and spirit. They speak of things like vastly expanding the realm of consciousness ... the belief, the knowledge, and even the experience that our physical world of the senses is a mere illusion, a world of shadows, and that the three-dimensional tool we call our body serves only as a container or dwelling place for Something infinitely greater and more comprehensive than that body and which constitutes the matrix of the real life."
    Holger Kalweit, Dreamtime and Inner Space




    Technological Shamanism

    Further Resources

    "Remember the shaman when he used to say
    Man is the dream of the dolphin" Enigma2

    Take me back to the place I was before