Growing up we were taught about life post and pre colonialism, and books like Things Fall Apart gave us a little glimpse of what used to happen. One aspect that fascinated me was witch-doctors/shamans and the absolute faith and respect their respective communities gave them. African Shamanic Group talks about African Shamanism, so give that a read.
Shamanism is a way to connect with nature and the spiritual world. The term was coined by anthropologists to refer to the spiritual and ceremonial leaders among indigenous cultures worldwide. Our witch-doctors for instance fall under this. If you look at their practices and compare them to other spiritual leaders such as the Huchiol Shamans of Mexico, you’ll find there are several similarities.
Before westerners came with their religion and their advancements in medicine, we relied on our spiritual and ceremonial leaders who practiced what is now referred to as Alternative Medicine; health care approaches developed outside of mainstream Western, or conventional, medicine for specific conditions or overall well-being.
Today, shamanism has been popularized throughout the western world, especially in new-age circles. Both traditional forms of shamanism and modernized, are practiced and people are turning to this form of healing to restore balance to their mind, body and spirit. Elements of shamanism as its understood today are connection with nature, healing of self and community, spiritual Practice, pilgrimage to sacred places and vision and ceremony.
Modernized shamanism is accessible in Nairobi for anyone willing to open their minds and experience it. I was amused to learn that someone actually has a running practice here, then curious as to whether or not shamanism is a legit practice. Karina Lynge – Personal Transformation offers a shamanic experience through Energy Healing, Transformational Retreats and Shamanic Safaris. She has several years of experience and has a stable client base.
I know, like me, you may be skeptical, but why not take a break from the poking, prodding and pill popping to deal with what ails you. Getting a better understanding of your body and taking a retreat into the wild to get in touch with yourself may just be what you need. Personally I’d like to give this go to help get rid of my back pain and insomnia.
If I actually go through with it, I’ll post my experience and give you my thoughts on modern day shamanism.