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Plant Spirit Shamanism: Traditional Techniques for Healing the Soul Paperback – August 3, 2006
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"Plant Spirit Shamanism takes readers into realms that defy rational logic and scientific theory, showing graphically that we humans are not the only intelligent life on this planet. From their extensive travels to indigenous cultures that understand life very differently from those in the ‘developed’ world, the authors reveal a wealth of plant knowledge that has been lost to Western civilization.This book is both a fascinating read and a considerable challenge to the orthodox mind.” (Leo Rutherford, author of The Way of Shamanism and Your Shamanic Path)
"This is an incredible book, a book with depth that speaks to the soul. . . . The knowledge in this book could very easily be put to good use in everyday life, which makes it a 'keeper; for any healer's library." (Bonnie Cehovet, Angelfire, Sept 2006)
“Plant Spirit Shamanism explores not the usual medicinal qualities of plants, but shamanic communications with the spirits of the plants themselves. . . . Healers will find this essential to understanding plant processes.” (Diane C. Donovon, California Bookwatch, Nov 2006)
"A practical and useful guide for healing on a deeper level, using Mother Nature's power." (Vicky Thompson, New Connexion, Nov-Dec 2006)
"Healers will find this essential to understanding plant processes." (California Bookwatch, Nov 2006)
"The book is not simply a dry academic discussion of these topics, although that alone would be intrinsically interesting. Instead, it provides cross-cultural perspectives on all aspects of plant-spirit based healing. . . . Whether you want to learn to practice plant-spirit medicine--or simply want to gain a better understanding of it--this book will be a useful addition to your botanical library." (Dennis J. McKenna, Ph.D., HerbalGram, Journal of American Botanical Council, No. 78, May/July 2008)
"Ross Heaven and Howard Charing create a cross-cultural distillation of plant shamanism to reveal the essential core of the techniques and the basis of the healing process." (Alec Franklor, Edge Life, No. 187)
“[Ross Heaven and Howard Charing] explain the methods shamans use to establish connections to plant spirits and provide practical exercises as well as a directory of traditional Amazonian and Caribbean healing plants and their common North American equivalents, so readers can explore the world of plant spirits and make them allies of their own, through various dieting techniques. Books like these are pretty difficult to come across. This one outlines the practical instructions one can apply in a ritual context to that which you seek to attract into or repel from your life.” (Odyssey Magazine, October 2013)
From the Back Cover
INDIGENOUS CULTURES / HERBAL HEALING
“Plant Spirit Shamanism takes readers into realms that defy rational logic and scientific theory, showing graphically that we humans are not the only intelligent life on this planet. From their extensive travels to indigenous cultures that understand life very differently from those in the ‘developed’ world, the authors reveal a wealth of plant knowledge that has been lost to Western civilization. This book is both a fascinating read and a considerable challenge to the orthodox mind.”
--Leo Rutherford, author of The Way of Shamanism and Your Shamanic Path
In Plant Spirit Shamanism, Ross Heaven and Howard G. Charing explore the use of one of the major allies of shamans for healing, seeing, dreaming, and empowerment--plant spirits. After observing great similarities in the use of plants among shamans throughout the world, they discovered the reason behind these similarities: Rather than dealing with the “medical properties” of the plants or specific healing techniques, shamans are communing with the spirits of the plants themselves.
From their years of in-depth shamanic work in the Amazon, Haiti, and Europe, including extensive field interviews with master shamans, Heaven and Charing present the core methods of plant shamanism used in healing rituals the world over: soul retrieval, spirit extraction, sin eating, and the Amazonian tradition of pusanga (love medicine). They explain the techniques shamans use to establish connections to plant spirits and provide practical exercises as well as a directory of traditional Amazonian and Caribbean healing plants and their common North American equivalents so readers can explore the world of plant spirits and make them allies of their own.
ROSS HEAVEN is a therapist and workshop leader specializing in personal development, healing, and shamanism. He offers indigenous medicine retreats and workshops worldwide. His books include The Spiritual Practices of the Ninja, Darkness Visible, and Vodou Shaman. HOWARD G. CHARING is a director of the Eagle Wing’s Centre for Contemporary Shamanism, has taught at Dr. Michael Harner’s Foundation for Shamanic Studies, and leads workshops and medicine retreats in the United Kingdom, the Peruvian Amazon basin, and the Andes. Both authors live in England.
Top Customer Reviews
However, if you have studied any forms of shamanism, or have gone to Peru, or elsewhere, to work with the shamans and the medicines directly, then this book will leave you wanting. You get some info on different kind of plant preparations. But you won't remember those. This is not a cookbook. You deal feel like an outsider as much of the information is just facts. You can't learn shamanism or this path from a book. There was really not enough artwork throughout the book to engage the reader to the personalities of the shamans either. (With enough questionable activity around Hoodoo/Voodoo it was curious to me why that topic was included. Anytime you get into topics of control then you are playing with karma.)
If you want more insights into the shamans mind then a better book is The Ayahuasca Sessions: Conversations with Amazonian Curanderos and Western Shamans.
If you are more interested in the fungi aspect then this book is a good read Mushroom Wisdom: How Shamans Cultivate Spiritual Consciousness.
If you want more information on shamanism in general then Michael Harner should be on your shortlist Cave and Cosmos: Shamanic Encounters with Another Reality.
Be careful who you listen to in this area. Alot of people are making stuff up, plaigarising, or just talking nonsense (The Shamanic Way of the Bee: Ancient Wisdom and Healing Practices of the Bee Masters,Dance of the Four Winds: Secrets of the Inca Medicine Wheel)
Nothing beats spending time with a medicine person who has been on the path for awhile. Do your research and keep your eyes open. You want someone who is either living on the land/jungle, or someone who was taught there.
Some aspects of this book regarding pusanga, etc are debatable, but overall this book is a eye-opener, it changed my life and affirmed my faith and love in God and Nature.
Diane C. Donovan
I'm very glad that I read it because it totally changed the way I look at plants, and our earth now. Before plants were just green things to me, they were just there. I never realized how truly alive and 'intelligent' they are.
I loved reading this book, very enjoyable read and fascinating. the more you read, the more you begin to appreciate the beautiful and fragile nature of our world. I really came to appreciate plants a lot more. I'm glad I'm a vegetarian, because I can see how healthy plants can very positively affect the human body.
EDIT: I have since learned some things about one of the authors, namely that he is not as much of an expert on ayahuasca as I had thought, when I first read this book. The author in particular is Ross Heaven.
I really recommend anyone who is interested in this topic to read other books. This is a good book, but not a higher authority. this book is the tip of the iceberg as far as this subject is concerned!