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Shamanic Voices: A Survey of Visionary Narratives (Arkana) Paperback – August 15, 1991

4.8 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Paperback, August 15, 1991
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Product Details

  • Series: Arkana
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (August 15, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140193480
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140193480
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 7.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #743,588 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Books on shamanism tend to be quite a mixed bunch in terms of quality. Shamanic Voices though is one of the best and most authentic (steering well clear of the flakey "new age" type of shamanism). I would also recommend highly Wizard of the Upper Amazon or any book by Jeremy Narby. Joan Halifax has collected a variety of writtings in this book, my favorite of which is the artic shamans and also the slightly sad story of the aboriginal Australian shaman who lost his power. This is one of my favorite books and comes highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback
Joan Halifax has done an great job of taking important clips of information from various interviews done with various shaman from around the world. Such famous shaman as Black Elk (from Black Elk Speaks) are contained in here. She shows the similarity between all shamanic traditions as well as the differences with specific rights. Her selections of what she included were very smart, and also gives you insite as to what future books to buy, and what to avoid. A must read!
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Format: Paperback
This book is for the serious apprentice, though it's possible casual readers might enjoy the stories as well. Those looking for new age fluff should pass on this text, until they can learn to appreciate hands-on techniques 'solitude & suffering to transcend' and other fun topics like that. I've read many books on shamanism over the years but this one is the one I'd prefer to keep with me in place of all the others. This and perhaps Shapeshifting by John Perkins.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The best thing about this book was the text from shamans themselves. They make this worth reading, even when the rest is occasionally annoying.

When Halifax or other narrative/editorial voices were talking, the honeyed nature of the text aggravated me. I remarked at one point that I wanted to see if she could make it through three paragraphs without the use of the word "profound". (She could, but I think you get the point.) Note that the book was written in 1979 and tastes have changed-- I guess I prefer my anthropology or narration a little less decorated.

Still, if you're interested in shamanism, a really interesting and probably valuable book. Halifax breaks it into 9 sections with different thematic focus-- Vision Quests, Seeing in a Sacred Way, etc. I didn't get a whole lot out of the categories, but probably useful if you are looking for something specific.
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Format: Paperback
It is amazing reading these stories from shamans all over the world. The soties are moving and tie into one another. This book leaves a mark on its reader.
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