The Way of the Shaman - Study Guide Chapter 1, Discovering the Way Summary & Analysis

Michael Harner
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The Way of the Shaman by Michael Harner is an exploration of shamanism from both an academic and a practical perspective. The author repeatedly shows commonalities among the world's shamanic spiritual belief systems. In fact, he shows that religious traditions all share mystical and symbolic similarities. For example, Harner equates the ayahuasca-induced hallucinogenic near-death experience he had with the Conibo with the Bible's descriptions of "the serpent" with water gushing from its mouth and the fight of Michael and his angels against Satan in the Book of Revelations. The fact that traditions are similar all over the world underpins Harner's contention that shamanism transcends any particular culture.

Harner reinforces the points about similarity he makes with scholarship by appealing to his own personal experiences. His reports of the rituals, symbols, and visions of different tribes he observes are quite...

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This section contains 922 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Way of the Shaman Study Guide
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