Shamanism: An Encyclopedia of World Beliefs, Practices, and Culture, Volume 1

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Mariko Namba Walter, Eva Jane Neumann Fridman
ABC-CLIO, 2004 - Body, Mind & Spirit - 1055 pages
2 Reviews

This two-volume reference is the first international survey of shamanistic beliefs from prehistory to the present day. In nearly 200 detailed, readable entries, leading ethnographers, psychologists, archaeologists, historians, and scholars of religion and folk literature explain the general principles of shamanism as well as the details of widely varied practices.

What is it like to be a shaman? Entries describe, region by region, the traits, such as sicknesses and dreams, that mark a person as a shaman, as well as the training undertaken by initiates. They detail the costumes, music, rituals, artifacts, and drugs that shamans use to achieve altered states of consciousness, communicate with spirits, travel in the spirit world, and retrieve souls. Unlike most Western books on shamanism, which focus narrowly on the individual's experience of healing and trance, Shamanism also examines the function of shamanism in society from social, political, and historical perspectives and identifies the ancient, continuous thread that connects shamanistic beliefs and rituals across cultures and millennia.

 

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Shamanism: an encyclopedia of world beliefs, practices, and culture

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

This two-volume set offers a comprehensive cross-cultural overview of shamanism, defined by editors Walter (Bucknell Univ.) and Fridman (Brown Univ.) as a "religious belief system in which the shaman ... Read full review

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User Review  - earthlistener - LibraryThing

This book has a lot of information of shamanism throughout history and the world. A really good resource for information from a anthropologic view. Read full review

Contents

A
3
B
29
C
35
D
71
E
107
F
127
G
131
H
137
W
271
Overview North America
275
Overview Central and South America
365
Overview Europe
465
Overview Eurasia
523
Overview Korea and Japan
653
Overview China and SinoAsia
705
Overview South Asia The Himalayas and Tibet
741

I
153
M
161
N
187
O
197
P
201
R
219
S
225
T
243
U
265
V
267
Overview Southeast Asia
799
Overview Australasia and Oceania
851
Overview Africa
885
Bibliography
963
Advisory Board
1027
Contributors
1029
Index
1035
About the Authors
1055
Copyright

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Page xxi - With these provisos and qualifications we can now characterize the shaman as an inspired prophet and healer, a charismatic religious figure with the power to control the spirits, usually by incarnating them.

About the author (2004)

Mariko Namba Walter is a visiting professor at Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA, and teaches on shamanism and Asian religions.

Eva Jane Neumann Fridman is a practicing psychotherapist and anthropologist and teaches on shamanism at Brown University, Providence, RI.

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