Throughout human history, traditional healers have worked with energy, with energies, with spirit guides and deities, with light. Shamans have used ritual, drama, story and song, music and imagery to bring people into alignment with the fundamental energies of Order, Balance, Harmony and Flow inherent in the universal energy.
Shamanism, once dismissed as “primitive” by the western world, has experienced a resurgence of attention and practice in recent years. We are rediscovering ancient wisdom and experiencing its benefits.
People ask: what is the difference between Shamanic healing and SourcePoint Therapy? Let’s explore that and also look at the similarities. Our good friend Diane Haug teaches the Grof Holotropic Breathwork, and included in the training she does is an overview of Shamanism. Here are some of the characteristics of the Shamanic approach that she identifies and that Bob covers in his PowerPoint in Module 3.
- Shamanism implies a connection with spirit. It implies the ability to journey in spirit to restore Order, Balance, Harmony, and Flow to the individual, the community and between the world of spirit and the human world.
- Shamanic healing implies the ability to get out of the way and let something greater move through you.
- A shaman is a spiritual intermediary between the realms of the secular and the sacred. Shamans travel to other worlds to meet with entities and beings from whom they can gain knowledge and bring that back to the people.
- Illness and injury are believed to result from an impaired relationship with the supernatural. Shamanic practices link the human and spiritual world so that a proper relationship can be restored and maintained between them.
When we look at these in light of SourcePoint Therapy we see parallels. To link the human and spiritual world is our intention. This we do by using the points and connecting to the Blueprint. However, we don’t journey in spirit, in the traditional sense. The points are the doorways to other realms. The Blueprint is the intermediary between Source and human; it has the information we need for transformation. The points bring the information (the knowledge) needed to support health directly to the body. There isn’t someone interpreting that information, engaging with that information, telling a story about it. It’s just … the information needed by the body, directly interacting with the body. In a certain sense, the points take the place of the shaman, in a very neutral way.
Shamans use ritual, and we have our simple rituals in SourcePoint. Holding the points, for oneself or others, is a ritual that creates an energetic structure for transformation and alignment with Order, Balance, Harmony and Flow. Traditional rituals create energetic structures, containers for the work to be done, and invoke the presence of the great cosmic Order in one form or another. Holding the points has its similarities to the invocation of the Four Directions that often precedes Native American ceremonies. What we are working with in SourcePoint, again, is simplicity: the essence. We are seeking to open the doorway to healing energies of Order, Balance, Harmony and Flow without drama, without cultural identification, without investment in any religion or indigenous tradition. I’m not saying there isn’t a story, because we live in a world of story, but we try to keep it simple.
The story of SourcePoint is this: We can access the information of health for the human body from the vast store of information in the universal energy field. We can do this through using particular points in the human energy field to connect to the Blueprint. In today’s world, physical modalities and medicines are usually necessary to bring healing, but this work at an energy level can support and enhance what is being done at the physical level. There is no division between energy and matter, spirit and flesh.
Admittedly, this story can be as difficult for some people to believe as one of shamans flying through the air to battle spirits from another realm. People don’t need to believe this story; they just need to be open to trying something that may help alleviate their pain and suffering. They don’t have to take on a system with a long tradition of specific rituals, healers, deities, spirits, and world-view. For many people, who have a karmic affinity with a particular shamanic path, that’s absolutely what they need. Our intention is to demystify working with energy, to open the door into what is called “non-ordinary consciousness” and help people see how that energy/consciousness can infuse our everyday life at every moment. Our belief is that everyone has the capacity to work with energy, to access the information of greater consciousness for the benefit of themselves and all beings.
However, this view brings a challenge to the SourcePoint practitioner: being willing to let go of the drama. Shamans battle spirits. In exorcism, priests cast out demonic forces. There’s a lot of drama in traditional ritual practices. We’re working with finding other ways, with the view that new information, the information of Order, Balance, Harmony and Flow, can communicate with and penetrate old dense habit patterns of body and mind. We’re always encouraging people to stay centered in the Blueprint, to allow it to work, to not get attached to the story. Often we end up perpetuating the old stories people bring us because we get involved. We react with fear or fascination. Those are the two most common deep responses, whether to our own stories or those of another. It’s a delicate balance to allow a story to emerge, with respect, loving attention and non-attachment, without reacting and getting involved. It’s a practice to be present and allow a story to pass through, to navigate the energies of release, and remember that where our attention goes, a lot of energy goes with it. Energy gets caught in the story, and as practitioners of SourcePoint it’s good to ask ourselves regularly, where is my primary focus right now? On the drama, the old story that is present in this blockage – or on the information of health, of Order, Balance, Harmony and Flow, the Blueprint? Am I fascinated or afraid of what’s going on here? Or am I allowing space, bearing witness and facilitating the creation of a container that allows transformation?
These are issues and questions we’ll be addressing in our upcoming advanced trainings.
Someone recently asked about exorcism and SourcePoint Therapy. In Module Three people learn the technique for withdrawing foreign energies. When working with energy it is important to acknowledge that foreign energies can invade the individual energy field. In acupuncture these are called “pernicious influences” and can be wind, cold, heat, viruses, a wide range of invasive energies. In shamanic healing these foreign energies are identified also in many ways, as ghosts, negative entities, curses, and so on. The simple approach we teach recognizes that the individual energy field is vulnerable to invasion of energies other than itself at many different levels. Often, again, the withdrawal technique may be called for when the person isn’t getting well. This is the closest we come to “exorcism” and it isn’t that close. We make no attempt to identify the energy, to give it a persona. The Guardian Points and the Diamond Points always accompany the withdrawal because what is withdrawn is not as important as bringing in new information. The foreign energy is simply another blockage to the free flow of information from the Blueprint. Exorcism is usually surrounded by a lot of drama. As I’ll repeat over and over, in SourcePoint Therapy we’re working with letting go of the drama. We’re not battling anything or expelling anything or casting anything out. We’re not “performing” an exorcism. We are helping the energy of the Blueprint to do its work. And that energy is imbued with the intention of restoring Order, Balance, Harmony and Flow.
I want to be perfectly clear: the shamanic path, with its rich wisdom and tradition, is powerful and effective. It’s not for everyone. Its essence is repairing and maintaining the connection to spirit, and we hope to provide another way to work with that principle. We come from common ground: an awareness that our lives are rooted in a great cosmic order that is the source of our being. It’s essential to maintain the strength of that connection for our own health and that of the world.
When you work with energy, when energy is flowing, there will be laughter and tears, there will be story, song, dance, art, music. There will be life in all its beauty and challenge, its joy and sorrow. There will be compassion, love, and awareness, the awareness that guides us through all experience, through all drama, into simple presence.
©2011 Donna Thomson and Bob Schrei