Guided Meditation — Rebranding The Shamanic Journey

Why They Sell The Shamanic Journey as Guided Meditation

The Shamanism is at the core of consciousness exploration. Come and learn how you can use this process to improve your own life.

What is Guided Meditation?

To be guided means to be led.  A guide is helpful for learning how to use any process.   It is how one learns to use the creative visualization method of the ancient Shamanic tradition.  You learn how to do it by being guided through the process.  Once you learn the process, you no longer need an external guide.

After you learn how to use the process, you can venture into consciousness on your own. All you need is a drumbeat or drum track to help you focus.

The origins of this method go back before recorded history. Thus, making it the first method of consciousness exploration.  The process known as guided meditation is the rebranding of The Shamanic Journey.  This a repeatable process you can do own your own.  It allows us to reach an altered state of awareness.   

You learn the process of this journey by being guided.  However, you should not use the guide as a crutch.  Once you learn how to use the process, then use what you learn about the method to make your own journey.  This is very important.  Using an external source keeps the mind on a superficial level.  This prevents you from using the power of the process to delve further into your subconscious mind.

The basic method combines creative visualization and sound.  A drumbeat is often the focal point. The mind and heart rate follow the rhythm.  People reach an altered state of awareness as they travel on an inward journey. Someone reads a script guiding you through landscapes of imagery like dreaming.  This is where the name guided meditation originates.  The goal of embarking on this journey varies.  For instance, it could be to find healing or to receive guidance in achieving a task.

Moreover, you can find this process in indigenous cultures around the world.  The process comes from a diverse body of knowledge we know as Shamanism.

different cultures

In many ancient traditions, reality has four levels or planes.  There are three levels of non-ordinary reality.  These are the upper, lower, and middle worlds.  Then, we have the default plane of ordinary reality where we start our journey of life.

Additionally, “non-ordinary” reality gives us access to other spirit beings.  These spirit guides are those who help us understand our spiritual journey.  The goal of your first journey is to meet these beings who will help.

What is Shamanism?

Shamanism is an ancient 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.

We know the teachers or leaders of these systems as Shaman.  They are the pioneers of the unknown.  They are developers of tools for both spiritual practices and scientific inquiry.

The knowledge within this ancient systems includes healing practices for mind, body, and spirit.   For instance, you can trace the roots of modern medicines and psychology back to the ancient ideas within Shamanism.

Another key point is that you can find similar traditions around the globe.  Even though they live in different climates, they engaged in the same research of consciousness.

What is The Shamanic Journey?

shamanism & the shamanic journey

This is the core spiritual process for many indigenous cultures. Shamanism revolves around inner work. As mentioned above, this method opens a doorway to a heightened state of awareness. Michael Harner calls “The Shamanic State of Consciousness” (SSC).

Mr. Harner’s research shows that when in this state, brainwaves are the theta-wave are around 4 to 7Hz. This differs in significant ways from other states of waking, sleeping, and dreaming.  And it also different from the measurable brainwave patterns of transcendental consciousness.

The Shamanic State of Consciousness

The easiest way is with a rhythm track recorded specifically for the Shamanic Journey.    Many use drums, rattles, or singing bowls. This vibration will open the doorway to SSC, enabling 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.  The potency of the drug controls the depth and length of your session.  This takes away your control. Some ancient traditions use a mixture of drugs and sound.  This approach is only for the experienced spiritual traveler.

A safer way to journey is with the use of an audio drum track. Some also include a talk-track with guided imagery.  This allows you to build your own routine.  There are many books that also contain these resources.

Why Rebrand the Shamanic Journey?

You Rebrand or change the name of something to make it more acceptable.  And, this makes it more marketable.  So, rebranding the process is a marketing tactic.  You can then sell the soundtrack of the learning process.  You can change the focus and the length of your product to fit the market.

Shamanism is a threat to the customer base of Western religion. So, the followers of Western religion could not use this process because it points to Shamanism as the source.  But if they rebrand or rename the process, then they can sell it as guided meditation or creative visualization.

When you use generic terms for the process, then you can market it to different buyers.  It becomes acceptable to those that also believe in some form of Western religion. This is a way to disguise the origin.

They don’t call the rebranding this process theft.  They prefer to see it as the appropriation of knowledge.  After all, that is how they built their religions in the first place.  Rebranding enables people to use the process while demonizing the source.  That’s right.  Western religion demonizes those cultures that pioneered and safeguarded the processes.

Symbolism in a greater or lesser degree is essential to every kind of external worship, and we need not shrink from the conclusion that in the matter of baptisms and washings, of genuflection’s and other acts of reverence, of lights and sweet smelling incense, of flowers and white vestures, of spiritual unction’s and the imposing of hands, of sacrifice and the rite of the Communion banquet, the Church has borrowed without hesitation from the common stock of significant actions known to all periods and to all nations.  In such matters as these, Christianity claims no monopoly or originality. ― The Catholic Encyclopedia and International Work, Vol. 14 (1907)

History shows us that this strategy works well. The Abrahamic of religions Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are the result of rebranding.  They are a combination of Egyptian, Babylonian, Persian, and Assyrian mystery religions.  So, assimilating the Shamanic process is one of the latest additions to their list of products.

In Conclusion

Guided meditation is just another term for the Shamanic Journey.  If it makes you feel more comfortable to call it something else, that’s your choice.  But, you need to give credit to the pagan ancestors that refined the processes and safeguarded them for future generations.

We hope you found this article helpful, maybe even thought-provoking.  You will find more interesting posts on our blog page. Use the “search” option on the blog page to find articles by key terms, topics, or category.

Does spiritual exploration interest you?  If so, we offer both face-to-face and virtual learning sessions.  We use a blended learning process to get the best learning outcomes.  This blended approach aligns with what Joseph Campbell calls the Hero’s Journey.

Our mission is all about sharing methods for developing and exploring consciousness.  You can find out more at our FAQ link.  Please consider giving a donation to help others learn.


Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia
Michael Harner,
Abrahamic Religions,


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