How People Become Shamans

In this video, Sandra Ingerman does a nice job of explaining how in indigenous cultures, people are “selected” to enter into a life of serving their communities by becoming shamans. Typically, there is some type of initiation experience(s) that is exceedingly difficult, but ultimately transformative. Illness, loss or major life crisis often is the catalyst, and it molds the person into a servant for the greater good of the community. She contrasts this with what is happening in our own culture, where people are increasingly drawn to shamanic healing practices and may pursue various training and experiences. People become shamanic practitioners, but she emphasizes that within our culture, one does not refer to oneself as a shaman.