The shaman occupies a key role as a healer mediating between the world of the living and the world of spirits and is a potent figure in alternative medicine. "Shamanism," a richly illustrated guide, looks at both historic and present-day manifestations, from the snowscaps of Siberia to the jungles of the Amazon.
The book discusses visions, initiation rites, shamanic chants, shamanism and mental health, the shamanic use of plants, and the political and social background to the shaman s work. Also covered are the links between the shaman s sense of unity in nature and the recent growth of ecological consciousness in Western societies.
* Includes more than 250 color illustrations that present a unique pictorial record of shamanism in practice and as represented in art and artifacts
* Includes a detailed region-by-region survey of shamanism with full-color maps
* Explores both spiritual and psychological aspects of the subject, as well as the relevance of shamanism to contemporary Western culture