A Life to Live
Shaman of the Amazon rainforest
After waking and eating another delicious breakfasts on the boat that always included delightful papya and bananas, we were off on our walk through the rainforest to meet the Shaman.
We sat in an open hut in a circle. We were all given a personal blessing. The Shaman would walk among us saying prayers in his native tongue and blow smoke on us as he chanted. We spent about an hour there. The experience was quite interesting. He had eyes full of knowledge and concern. His head dress was of meaningful feathers and his apprentices head dress was made of seeds and forest elements.
To some, the term “Shaman” may conjure up images of tricksters more than healers.
But authentic Shamans are masters of a sacred craft, living repositories of centuries of therapeutic wisdom.
The depth of shamans’ knowledge on preventive medicine and diagnostics has astonished even physicians who have studied their approach.
Shaman know the forest and medicinal treasures better than we do. And better than we ever will.
They will tell you that many human afflictions and diseases are from the heart, mind and spirit. Western medicine can’t touch them. He cures them.
Most medicine men and women and shamans remaining in the Amazon Rainforest are 70 years old or more.
Most of the shamans today do not have apprentices. So when a shaman dies, thousands of years of accumulated knowledge come completely and irreversibly to an end.
On our walk back we stopped in a location that had been logged. Each of us had an opportunity to give back to nature and plant a brand new tree.
Back on the boat and we will be stopping at our next excursion to a village that makes distilled rum from sugar cane. Please join me next week.