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Julia

The Maker tradition

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Hi all. I am a new student and wanted to learn a little more about the roots of Shamancave and The Maker tradition that is mentioned here. Looked through several articles on the site but they seem to be talking more about shamanism in general. Could you point me in the right direction.

 

Thanks, Julia

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Hi Julia,

 

Welcome to the cave! I have a couple of articles that may help you a bit. It doesn't necessarily talk specifically about who the Makers are but it will give a taste, a flavor of what it means to be a Maker. Of course, I am sure you will have more questions which is fine. Ask away. :)

 

http://www.shamanscave.com/contemporary-shamanism/ancestor-and-teacher

 

http://www.shamanscave.com/contemporary-shamanism/contemporary-shamanism

 

Hope this helps.

 

Again, Welcome.

 

Mark

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Hi Mark!

 

Thank you so much for the links. I think this gives me a good start and I hope to understand more once the class begins.

 

Everything I have read on your site resonates. I am very excited to start this journey.

 

Regards, J

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Slightly ambitious perhaps, but I like it too:)

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What makes a "Maker" ? I do not come from any community that would have a Shamanic influence, at least in this modern time. My ancestors had there ways. How does one who has callings or leanings to shamanic ways validate their path. Not that recognition is what I mean, but over site and guidance validation in the sense? Are there expereinces or encounters that can be looked at as a means of a ruler? I have heard from many places that a shaman is called, that it chooses the person. How does this call happen outside of the traditional practicing communities? Is it possible to be drawn by an ancestor guide, and taught by them?

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Hi Tama,

 

I guess I'll work backwards with your questions. It is possible to work with an ancestor guide. We do work with what we call the "Old Makers" in this way and receive training and guidance from them.

 

I feel that the process of learning the path is what chooses the person in this tradition, the way it is taught here, which is different than how it was before. In the past it has typically been passed down strictly through family members. The people that come to learn here are not chosen by anyone. Many people come to learn but very few finish. No one kicks them out, it's they who end up taking themselves out of the process at various points along the way. I think you could say that the path itself is self-determining in this way.

 

It's a tough path to follow. One of the reasons it's hard is because one of the things that makes a Maker is their individuality. Makers are not taught a predetermined method,or told what to experience, only guided to find their own definitions. They are given the tools and then they have to find their own way of working with the tradition. So if six Makers answer this post, you will probably get six very individual answers. That being said, you will probably notice an underlying consistency running through them which is because we all share the same cosmology.

 

Lorrie

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Thank you Lorrie. Your response hits home for me. I do tend to be an individualist in walking my spiritual path It is more a way of walking in what feels right and what I connect with that concerns me more rather then strict methods and strict tradition. I am open to learning as I feel we should always be expanding. As I have researched some on shamanism there were things that spoke very loudly to me and other things I seemed to have no connection with what so ever. It is so refreshing to have found a place that seems to share my stance. I have wavered on embracing what I felt was a drawing to the shamanstic way for the very reasons listed above. I do feel more freedom now in pursuing it.

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Hi Tama,

 

The call is something that comes from within you but also connects you to something larger than you, if you explore it. In our times and culture the possible outward signs for this are largely irrelevant, since they wouldn't mean anything to most people anyway - for example, say in the past a kid that was experiencing certain type of dreams or night terrors, that could be a sign and there would be certain ways to deal with it and check it out - in our culture the likely action would be something like a trip to the doctors and being diagnosed with a sleeping disorder. That doesn't mean potential shamans aren't born into our culture, not at all, just that we mostly lack the safety net to catch those people and give them opportunity to learn.

 

Internally it's a different matter, and there's no roadmap of signs to validate your calling. The good thing about this tradition and how it's taught here is that it lets people explore without committing themselves to something they don't understand, so that they can take it as far as they feel they need or want to, whatever the reason they come here in the first place.

 

Kai

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Thank you Kai, for your response. I am thankful that I wasn't shuffled off to some doctor, was just allowed to expereince and beleive. Learning has been mostly on my own. I do understand what you mean about a safety net, for any belief outside the norm of instiitutionalized ones were looked upon unfavorably, so just didn't share with many due to that lack of a safety net.

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My understanding is, the calling comes from the Spirits, they 'know' and choose who will be shaman. In traditional cultures, people know how to recognise the signs. In traditional Aboriginal peoples in Australia, a healer is known from around the age of 2, there's just something about them that their parents and elders recognise and later on, they are given whatever training they need. With them, it could be anyone, there is often no previous family member who has been called.

 

I read in a book that often it would pass down through family lines because family members where the closed physically, on hand to receive, but I don't know more than that about it.

 

For me, I've had some of the classical experiences people say someone called to be a shaman has had. As Kai said, being in communities who have lost ties with traditional ways, the signs of being called can often appear to be health issues or mental health issues. That doesn't mean someone with a particular health or mental health issue is really being called to be a shaman, just that in some cases it can be.

 

As for me, I grew up in modern, down town Melbourne, in Australia. No religion to speak of, beyond being taught 2 prayers at midday nap time when I was 3. Went to a state primary and high school. Fell into christianity when I was 17 and stayed there for 6 years. Really typical. Come from a mix of British and Jewish stock - all immigrants to Australia over 200 years ago, so around 4th gen. Aussie. Really typical as I said. Except I had a serious health issue at 1 month requiring oxygen for 24 hours. After that I was constantly talking to invisible people only I could see. At around 18 months I had another serious illness and left me with eye sight problems. My right eye has never really worked properly since then and would literally turn into toward my nose as though trying to look within. I had an operation at 5 to try and correct it. Have worn glasses since I was 2.5 yrs. And I continued to spend time with my invisible friends until I was about 6 or 7. I did not mix well with other children, found it very hard to make friends and spent huge amounts of time in my room alone, reading. My best friend as a child was Night. I mean literal night time. I would look at the night sky and feel she was somehow my mother.

 

There were other things that happened later on. I've explored over, under and around shamanism - everything to avoid it because deep down I knew this was my path but I was afraid to face it. Now that I accept it and am properly looking at it, I am having experiences of being taught my path in visions and dreams. And I'd really like to know what's up with all the cups of tea I keep being given.

Personally, I believe shamanism is a part of every culture, even in the west. We all came out of traditional cultures long ago, who had very clear understanding and experiences of shamans or similar. I believe it's all part of the DNA of being human. If you look at epigenetics, it shows that traits like alcoholism or depression, can actually be passed down through generations. In traditional witchcraft they talk about the red thread, he blood line which gets passed along, so why not shamanic abilities? For many in the west today, the only sign they are being called is they are interested in learning about shamanism. And that's all you really need to get started. If it's not a calling for you, you will either find your true path or just lose interest. I really think the only sign that matters for us now is that personal interest.

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I am glad you have chosen to follow your own path Michelle. That's not something that can be said for the majority of people. They fear the unknown of following a path that requires such personal responsibility.

 

I agree with you about how the individual will determine their own path in shamanism in modern times. Where we no longer have shamanism as part of our cultural identity yet, it is as you say, part of the DNA of being human, different ways of being called are being found.

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I'm really grateful for this thread. It speaks deeply to me. I've felt called to the shamanic for a long time and yet still have no idea what exactly that means but am happy to have found my way here to the Cave for now. And as I seem to keep saying every day these days ... one step at a time, one day at a time... It's become like a mantra. It feels like the most honest way to live right now...one step at a time.

 

I resonate with you both Lorrie and Michelle "about how the individual will determine their own path in shamanism in modern times. Where we no longer have shamanism as part of our cultural identity yet, it is as you say, part of the DNA of being human, different ways of being called are being found."

 

My sense of the shamanic is about feeling like I've been walking my own individual path and no one can do it for me. I also appreciate (at least in my understanding) how the shamanic came before religion - it allowed us all to have access to the divine and to me has always felt more empowering than religion (or today's new age spirituality or whatever) where we give our power over to a guru that digests life for us. I'm also appreciating how here - our own experience is one of our beacons. (I believe the Buddha had a similar teaching... but don't quote me on that). That to me is priceless - no one can take your own experience away from you and its truly different for each one us. And it taking me time to learn that my experience doesn't have to match anyone elses - not even the people I'm the closest withfor it to be as true and valid as anything else in this crazy universe. This one takes so much inner strength and still seems to be a hard one for me to fully digest. But I can't really make sense of it any other way. Nor do I want too.

 

(and Michelle - all the cups of tea you've been. :lol: :)That one made me laugh out loud. Something inside me wants to say- enjoy the tea and say thank you! Or if you prefer coffee, green juice or bourbon - maybe ask and they'll serve you that instead).

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I think doing it yourself is very difficult, but you end up owning every step of your path. That means a lot down the road. Energetically, I think that's also very important. Being entangled with another for your spiritual path makes it very difficult to have clarity about where you are and where you are going.

 

Certainly makes it challenging, though. :)

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Part of my struggle for so long was believing it was better to be traditionally trained by a "real" shaman. Where I was going to find one living in the middle of the city in Melbourne, Australia I had no idea. Eventually, I came to the point where I had to go alone and just cope with it. As I stumbled along, I found most of my doubt and worry was based on fear of being judged by others as not being good enough, not being worthy. Just prior to starting here I decided I would decide what was worthy or not in me and that if I said it was good enough, then it was. Doing classes here has helped me feel more certain and grounded in that belief, as I reclaim my own energy.

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