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Shamanism: A Biopsychosocial Paradigm of Consciousness and Healing, 2nd Edition 2nd Edition

5 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0313381812
ISBN-10: 031338181X
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Editorial Reviews

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"Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty." - Choice

Review

"Michael Winkelman's revised Shamanism breaks new ground in our understanding of the origins of religion, and the qualities that uniquely make us human. Drawing from evolutionary psychology, he shows how religious ceremonies evolved out of earlier, pre-human systems of ritual communication; how these 'costly displays' are adaptively beneficial; and how healing responses can be induced from shamanistic states of consciousness. The result is essential reading for anyone interested in shamanism, human evolution, the origin of religion, and traditional healing practices." (David S. Whitley, author of Cave Paintings and the Human Spirit: The Origin of Creativity and Belief)

"This important book examines the nature of shamanism, humanity's oldest and universal expression of religiosity, from fascinating fresh perspectives. It shows consciousness to derive from a blending of bodily, neurological, social and environmental interactions, and the altered mind states of shamanism, specifically, to be adaptations of these causing ancient and modern parts of the brain to function in an integrated manner allowing nonverbal, symbolic and metaphorical mental content to be experienced directly in immersive ways, such as in 'shamanic flight' – the so-called out-of-body experience. The book touches on a considerable range of related topics such as healing, the effects of music on the brain, and, most importantly, it explores how the development of shamanic rituals was a key factor in human evolution." (Paul Devereux, founding co-editor, Time and Mind – The Journal of Archaeology, Consciousness and Culture)

"Michael Winkelman's revised volume on shamanism has replaced Mircea Eliade's classic text as the most authoritative and innovative book on the topic. Taking an evolutionary approach to the nature and functions of shamanic practices, Winkelman demonstrates not only their adaptive functions, but that their study must be central to any comprehensive explanation of humanity's origins and development." (Stanley Krippner, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, Saybrook University
Co-author, Personal Mythology; co-editor, Mysterious Minds: The Neurobiology of Psychics, Mediums, and Other Remarkable People)

"The second edition of Winkelman's Shamanism is even better than the first edition. It offers a rare perspective that balances the cultural and neuropsychological aspects of the subject. It is a must read for any serious student of shamanism or the evolution of religious systems." (Charles D. Laughlin, Ph.D. , Emeritus professor of anthropology, Department of Sociology & Anthropology, Carleton University, and co-author of Brain, Symbol, and Experience: Toward a Neurophenomenology of Consciousness)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 309 pages
  • Publisher: Praeger; 2 edition (August 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031338181X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0313381812
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #646,184 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
The second edition of Winkelman's Shamanism is better than the first edition. It offers one of the few perspectives that balances the cultural and neuropsychological aspects of the subject. The author is a noted authority on the anthropology of altered states of consciousness, and the role of extraordinary experiences on religious systems across cultures. This is an area that is way underplayed in histories and socieologies of religions and it is refreshing that the breadth of coverage is so well combined with the biological and neuroscience research behind such experiences. This book is a must read for any serious student of shamanism or the evolution of religious systems.
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Format: Hardcover
This important book examines the nature of shamanism, humanity's oldest and universal expression of religiosity, from fascinating fresh perspectives. It shows consciousness to derive from a blending of bodily, neurological, social and environmental interactions, and the altered mind states of shamanism, specifically, to be adaptations of these causing ancient and modern parts of the brain to function in an integrated manner allowing nonverbal, symbolic and metaphorical mental content to be experienced directly in immersive ways, such as in "shamanic flight" - the so-called out-of-body experience. The book touches on a considerable range of related topics such as healing, the effects of music on the brain, and, most importantly, it explores how the development of shamanic rituals was a key factor in human evolution.
Comment 11 of 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Winkelman takes the elitist anthropological path of shamanism into the west and turns it upside down in this groundbreaking study of shamanic experience. The texts that introduced us to shamanism in the 50s and 60s lacked transparency, sensitivity, neuroscience, and in many cases, respect. Not skirting the strengths or flaws of those early studies, Winkelman builds on them with contemporary science and insight. This text provides an informed modern perspective on a timeless animistic path. Not an easy read, though a necessary one for any student of theology, psychology, religion, and shamanism.
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