- How did you become become involved in shamanism and become a shaman?
Somewhere on my journey, I was told, “you do not call yourself a shaman, your community calls you a shaman.” I became involved in shamanism, or as I understand it, began walking the path of a shaman years ago after an experience of deep meditation and seeing myself as an eagle flying out and over the land. That meditation was followed by a dream, and I later realized I had undergone the first part of shamanic initiation. A whole new world opened up to me or opened within me, after I learned of the shamanic journey. Since then, I have learned much from several teachers, in the physical world and spiritual world; have experienced several more initiations; and have learned through teaching others about themselves through shamanism, shamanic technology and ritual.
The pathway to becoming a shaman varies from culture to culture, and sometimes within a culture. One shaman recounts that to become a shaman in his culture requires a transmission that comes from lightening, from a master shaman who determines you are ready or from a feeling deep within that calls one to the path. This shaman tells that all three paths are strange and difficult. I can say my journey on the path of a shaman continues to be strange, joyful and challenging.
- Can you briefly tell the reader about any unusual occurrence you have had?
There have many, many so many. The one that comes to mind other than the eagle meditation is an experience I had almost two years ago. I was in the hospital, and it was not pleasant. At one point a friend who was visiting me thought I was dying and ran down the hall to get help. That's how serious it was. Then one day, I had a conversation with Spirit about leaving my body and being ready to go…home. Either that night or about two in the morning, I woke up and felt as if something was about to happen. I opened my eyes and saw this ball of fire coming out of the universe. It went right into my abdomen. I remember saying “oh-o, something just happened.” I went back to sleep. A few days later I was getting out of the hospital.
- What hidden worlds do shamans journey to?
Again, it depends on their culture or the tradition they have been initiated into. My guidance takes me into the three types of Otherworlds: upper world, the lower world and the middle world. The upper world journey is like crossing into the Otherworld through a portal into the sky. An example of such is like the movie The Wizard of Oz. The lower world journey is traveling through a portal into the earth. And example of such is like the story of Alice in Wonderland. The middle world journey is a journey to the spiritual realm of the ordinary physical world we live in. In each of the journey types, my power animal or another spiritual friend usually escorts me. We never do anything alone.
- Are medicine men and women considered Shamans?
The simple answer is yes. However, you would need to understand the techniques, tools and technologies of the culture or tradition of that medicine men or medicine women. It may be that in their tradition, they were the shamans. Or they also have shamans in their community whose duties are separate from the medicine woman or medicine man. Sometimes in our attempts to understand another’s culture, we over simplify it.
- What is Soul healing and retrieval?
Soul retrieval is a technology a shaman, or shaman practitioner, uses to support a client in healing his or her soul, or restoring the split soul. We all have life experiences that result in feeling “not all together” “mentally, physically or emotionally out of balance or out of sorts.” Like its impossible to move forward after a breakup or you feel numb, apathetic or deadened. A person may experience soul loss where part of her vital essence separates in order to survive the experience. It is like a part of us escapes to avoid the pain of the experience. As we grow older, we realize that it is time to feel, connect and realize our wholeness. The soul healing and soul retrieval are sacred rituals that support the client to this consciousness of wholeness.
Visit Rev. Anthony Farmer's website at www.visionsoftheheart.org, or he can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org