Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Active and Contemplative - Shamanic Practicing Day and Night

A real shaman works and plays in rhythm, resonance, and harmony with the energy-flow patterns of power and possibility within and around all things, making h/erself an open conduit - behind the scenes yet still within the context of everyday life - for assisting what is entering and departing the world, shifting from dancing one dream to another, or re-telling a life story. One way to live the balance between hidden and open, contemplative and active is self-funding a shamanic practice with an ordinary reality day job - being actively engaged in the world, though not of it.

Throughout the usual daily routine of a mundane job many subtle and some bold opportunities arise for practicing shamanic ways. In geometric sanctuaries of consecrated spacetime, set aside from business as usual, different inspirations and encouragements stir up as active and contemplative shamanic interventions - through dream-journeys, artwork, dancing, storying, or quiet attention.

I used to wonder if the part-time self-funding jobs were a cop-out of some sort on my part - an avoidance of responsibilty or full-time committment to shamanic practice, or a sign of insecurity. Whether that ever was really the case or not, over the years I have come to understand that this way of shamanic praciticing is just as full-time as the shamanizing of noted workshop leaders and authors, allows a great deal of freedom, and keeps me positioned in the context of the this worldly challenges and ordeals faced by co-workers, neighbors, and the other travellers who cross my path as we all journey on.


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