The Making of a Shaman

Written by Boyd Martin

At 50, I decided to revisitrepparttar Carlos Castaneda Don Juan adventure series. I had delved intorepparttar 122260 Yaqui way in my 20's, but now Don Juan seemed to call to me fromrepparttar 122261 bookshelves and I could sense that immersion was near. I checked out Another Reality fromrepparttar 122262 library, and a few days later, a friend dumpedrepparttar 122263 next four books ofrepparttar 122264 series in my lap from a garage sale...a pretty obvious confirmation.

After a several weeks of intimate study ofrepparttar 122265 material, I began to wonder if there was going to be an embodiment of a sorcerer/teacher showing up in my life. The crows were swirling and squawking, squirrels were coming up to my feet, andrepparttar 122266 wind had a funny twist to it. All signs seemed to portend an arrival of some sort, so I was onrepparttar 122267 lookout.

Then appeared Frank Coppieters. It was as a result of a conversation about Reiki with Shay, who had been a student of Frank's. It just so happened Frank was having a shamanic gathering at his studio, and so we went, partly because Shay wanted to renew her connection, and partly because she felt I needed to meet him. The kicker was he used drumming as part of his gatherings. I am a professional drummer myself. This was certainly getting interesting!

The experience was fabulous. Frank was socially highly gracious, but when we went into his "light shamanic trance," as he calls it, he was positively otherworldly. His primal vocalizations conjured images of mystical worlds and cosmic places. And withrepparttar 122268 hypnotic drumming accompaniment, punctuated with an array of bell and rattle sounds, I was whisked away on a magic carpet ride.

The two-and-a-half-hour session seemed like 15 minutes, andrepparttar 122269 time distortion continued as I found myself driving and arriving home in what seemed like moments.

I reconnected with Frank again for a personal shamanic session, and was so blown away, I asked if he would be open to some freelance journalistic coverage. He was all game, and I sat with him for 90 minutes, covering his background and how he came to do what he was doing.

Frank's approach to his particular brand of shamanism had its roots in experimental theater. During his tenureship atrepparttar 122270 University of Antwerp, he hadrepparttar 122271 good fortune of meeting up with Jerzy Grotowski, considered one ofrepparttar 122272 most influential forces in fringe theater. He also was a bit of a shaman, absorbed withrepparttar 122273 concept of "ritualistic theatre," whererepparttar 122274 audience becomes an active participant in improvisation byrepparttar 122275 actors. Later, one of Frank's students decided to do his master's thesis onrepparttar 122276 work of Carlos Castaneda, which gave Frankrepparttar 122277 opportunity to read all of Castaneda's works. The focus ended up leading to a meeting with a real-live shaman.

A Time To Celebrate

Written by John Cali

A Time To Celebrate John Cali

Some of you know I live in northwestern Wyoming just outsiderepparttar USAís Yellowstone National Park. My little town is inrepparttar 122258 Big Horn Basin, which is actually a huge valley betweenrepparttar 122259 Big Horn Mountains onrepparttar 122260 east andrepparttar 122261 Absaroka Mountains onrepparttar 122262 west.

Last Saturday nightrepparttar 122263 weather turned cold, andrepparttar 122264 famous (or infamous, depending on your viewpoint) Wyoming wind howled all night long. Inrepparttar 122265 morning I awoke to a hushed landscape.

The wind had calmed, andrepparttar 122266 mountains and valley were covered with a bright and beautiful blanket of freshly fallen snow. Even though it was only October 24, it was a winter wonderland. Winter comes early in this high country.

But I love winter. Itís my favorite season. Although, since we have readers all over world, I know for many of you this time of year isrepparttar 122267 advent of spring and summer.

Anyway,repparttar 122268 snow reminded me ofrepparttar 122269 upcoming holiday season. Thanksgiving (inrepparttar 122270 USA) comes next month. And then, of course, Christmas in December. Since I can first remember, Iíve always loved those two holidays, especially Christmas.

Iím no longer a Christian in any traditional sense. But my large Italian family always made a big deal of Thanksgiving and Christmas. I have many warm and wonderful memories of growing up in that loving, nurturing environment.

Whether you celebrate either of those two days or not, this certainly is a time of celebration for many. And for me, at this point in my life, every day is a time to celebrate. But November and December are special because many folks besides me are also in a celebrating mood. But not everyone.

This year Iíll spend Thanksgiving and Christmas alone. My son and daughter-in-law are in Africa for a couple of years. And most ofrepparttar 122271 rest of my family is back inrepparttar 122272 eastern USA, about 2,000 miles away. Also, I have work commitments which will keep me in Wyoming this holiday season. But I will be going back East in early January for a belated holiday celebration with my family.

I will still find great joy in this season, alone or not. But many others, even those not alone, will findrepparttar 122273 holidays a depressing and stressing time. Several of my family often say they canít wait until December 26 when it will all be over.

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