Shaman, Healer, Sage – Chapter 1

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This book changed my mindset on health and our paths towards wellness. I will reread this book this week. My thoughts are that I will go through important Energy Medicine books – one per a week – making notes here in my blog. It will be a means of reviewing, learning, and practicing healing. So here I go…

Chapter 1 – Healing and Infinity

Background on Antonio Villoldo – medical anthropologist with his initial start in psychology. Alberto became involved, while still a young professor, on how energy medicine and visualization changes the brain’s chemistry. He decided to go in person to those have experienced this directly – to the Andes Mountains of Peru. Don Antonio, a shaman there, was his teacher. Initially, Alberto was suspicious of his beliefs…that they were based on symbolism and mythology. And not based on literal interpretations.

But this changed for Alberto after experiencing a spirit release ceremony of a missionary who was terminally ill. Don Antonio performed specific hand motions over different chakra points on the female missionary – actions which assisted in her soul be released from her body – something that Alberto was able to see (after a quick elbow smack by Antonio between Alberto’s eyes), yet hardly believe.

Healing Versus Curing

“Curing is remedial and involves fixing whatever outer problem arises… it does not help you avoid…the disease that caused the …[issue]. Healing is broader, more global, and complete. Healing transforms one’s life, and often, though not always, produces a physical cure…Healing results from an experience of infinity. While healing, we measure success by increased well-being, by a sense of newfound peace, empowerment, and a feeling of communion with all life” (p. 20).

Later, Alberto was suffering with pneumonia and couldn’t shake it off – even with a full-course of antibiotics. Don Antonio performed what was called Hampe or energy healing on him, and almost immediately the cough was gone. Not only that, he felt a peacefulness he hadn’t felt before. Don Antonio responded that he did not do that, that Alberto did the work himself.

Through this experience, Alberto discovered that a shaman is one who is on a “path of power, [with] direct engagement with the forces of the Spirit (p.22). A very important part of this path of power is called the Illumination Process which will be discussed in a future chapter.

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