Many people don’t know that the process of Guided Meditation is an important doorway to the fifth state of consciousness.
What is Guided Meditation?
Guided meditation is a new name for an old process. The older name is the Shamanic Journey. The name change is a rebranding effort. As a result, the new name makes it much more marketable.
This method combines creative visualization and sound. The drumbeat is the focal point. The mind and heart rate follow this rhythm. Thus, enabling people to reach an altered state of awareness. Moreover, you can find this process in indigenous cultures around the world. And, it comes from a diverse body of knowledge we know as Shamanism.
This process uses sound, intent, and imagination. One uses sound to initiate an inward journey to alternative realities.
In many traditions, our reality has four planes. There are three levels of non-ordinary reality, the upper, lower, and middle worlds. Along with these, is the default plane of ordinary reality. Most people are born with access to ordinary plane of reality. Consequently, we need this type of process to reach the non-ordinary states. However, some people are natural Shaman. They are born with the ability to travel without the need to use a process.
Additionally, non-ordinary reality is full of different types of spirit beings. So, it’s common for the first journey to meet those who will assist. These spirit guides are important to a safe and productive journey.
What is Shamanism?
Shamanism is a body of wisdom about human nature and our world. These practices are often the focus of many indigenous cultures. And, the knowledge within these systems is very diverse.
The teachers or leaders of these systems are known as Shaman. They are the pioneers of the unknown. They are developers of tools for both spiritual practices and scientific inquiry. And their knowledge includes healing practices for mind, body, and spirit. For instance, you can trace the roots of modern medicines and psychology back to the early ideas within Shamanism. Another key point is that you can find similar traditions around the globe. Even though they live in different climates, they all engaged in the same type of research.
What is a Shamanic Journey?
The shamanic journey is an ancient process for exploring awareness. It is still in use in many indigenous cultures. And, you can find some form of this process in almost every part of the world.
As mentioned above, the basic process uses sound to alter breathing, heartbeat. When combined with guided imagery the result is a change in awareness. It opens a doorway to a state Michael Harner calls “The Shamanic State of Consciousness” (SSC). Mr. Harner is an anthropologist, author, and modern-day Shaman.
Mr. Harner’s research shows that when a person is in this state their brainwaves are the theta-wave are around 4 to 7Hz. So, SSC is similar to other higher states like transcendental consciousness. Thus, it differs in significant ways from our default states of waking, sleeping and dreaming. Additionally, this process is part of the healing practices in many ancient cultures. It’s useful in the healing of mind, body, and spirit. It is also one of the primary processes for exploring non-ordinary reality.
How do you reach SSC?
The easiest way is with a rhythm track recorded specifically for the Shamanic Journey. Many use drums, rattles or singing bowls. The use of vibration alone to open the doorway to SSC enables full control over the process in both depth and duration. This has advantages over drug-induced altered states. Shamans are the magical athletes according to Michael Harner.
There are disadvantages to using drugs (Peyote, Ayahuasca, etc.) to induce the state. As a result, you are at the mercy of the potency of the drug. This takes away control of the depth and duration of the session. Some ancient traditions used a combination of both drug and sound. This approach is only for the experienced spiritual traveler.
All methods for reaching the Shamanic Journey come from Shamanism. It doesn’t matter if you call it guided meditation or creative visualization. It is still a part of the heritage of our ancestors.
Re-Branding the Shamanic Journey as Guided Meditation
Rebranding is common today. It’s changing the name or image of something. When a company buys another, it replaces the brand name. The same thing can happen with ideas or processes. This is the case with the Shamanic Journey.
The Shamanic Journey comes from cultures much older than Western theology. Shamanic practices come from eons of practical research. Whereas Western theology is mythology selling the Afterlife for profit. As such, Shamanism is seen as a threat to the Abrahamic religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. So, anything related to Shamanism is taboo. It is off-limits. It is demonized as evil.
However, many in the West still want to use this ancient knowledge. So, rebranding is the answer. Changing the name makes it more acceptable. It disguises the origin. Thus, it Shamanic Journey becomes Guided Meditation, Creative Visualization, or even Mind Journey, etc. These generic terms are the products of the successful re-branding campaign. Now we can sell it to a wider audience. They don’t call it stealing. It’s the innocent use of some other cultures knowledge.
Rebranding enables the use of the Shamanic Journey while at the same time demonizing the source. As a result, you can find variations in use in many Western religions that would not otherwise contemplate the use of Shamanism.
There is no distinction between the processes of guided meditation and the Shamanic Journey. If someone is selling guided meditation, they are appropriating knowledge.
If this article resonates, there are more on our blog. Also, you may be interested in learning about our blended learning process. This is our curriculum which we use to teach several mind-expanding tools. It also aligns the Hero’s Journey. This is the term Joseph Campbell gave the pattern of consciousness development. Our learning process is available in two forms. You can take part in the virtual learning module or in our workshops.
Image by Unsplash.