A Shaman is a man or woman who enters an altered state of consciousness- at will- to contact and utilize an ordinary hidden reality in offer to acquire knowledge, power and help other person. The Shaman have at least one or usually more, spirits in his personal services.
Shamanism represents the most widespread and ancient methodological system of mind-body healing known to humanity. Archaeological and ethnological evidences suggest that shamanic methods are at least twenty or thirty-thousand-year-old. Since the beginning of the century, ethnologists have fallen into the habit of using the terms “shaman,” “medicine man,” “sorcerer,” and “magician” interchangeably to designate certain individuals possessing magico-religious powers and found in all “primitive” societies.
The shaman shows his patients that they are not emotionally and spiritually alone in their struggles against illness and death. The shaman shares his special powers and convinces his patients, on a deep level of consciousness, that another human is willing to offer up his own self to help them.
Instruments of Shaman:
A shaman have wide variety of sacred implements including guardian animal. The sacred tools include special stones (saligram), sacred plant, drums, masks, musical instruments, and costume. These special and sacred tools to enhance and deepens the body and spirit of the shaman. They are used to reinforce and strengthen the bonds that the dhami / jhankri has created with his healing spirits. Spiritual power will flow through these relationships through the shaman throughout his work.
Dhyangro is Shaman drum with wooden sculpted handle. The Typical drums used by shamans in the Himalayan regions of central and eastern Nepal, this two-sided drum has an extended handle similar to the traditions of Tibet, and differs from the one-sided drums used by shamans in western Nepal who, like those in central Asia, are flushed from the back, reflecting perhaps separate ancient origins. The beautifully patinated handle has the overall shape of a Tibetan phurba, or a three-sided ritual dagger, and is decorated with snakes, a trident, and the faces of deities. A classic example of how the Shamanic, Tantric, Shaivit and Tibetan tradition has mingled over the Himalayas centuries, is the synthesis of many spiritual and mystical practises. Although difficult to assign to a specific ethnic group, the drum most likely originates from Gurung or Tamang in areas north and west of the Kathmandu Valley.
Chammar is a tail yak. It is used to purify the person’s spiritual body and to promote clarity of mind. The royal class used the chamber as a fan and whisk during the medieval period. The tail is used for purifying and fan sculptures of the deities in some temples and even in homes. The yak tails for the crown of spirit pillar calleed gaanj in western part of Nepal.
Damaru is a small two-headed drum used in Hinduism and Tibetan Buddhism. In Hinduism, the Damru is regarded as Shiva’s deity instrument, and said to have been produced by Shiva for the creation of spiritual sounds that have formed and controlled the entire universe. In Tibetan Buddhism, the damaru is used as an instrument in tantric practise. Damaru is held upright in one hand while continuously spinning the wrist, this allows the two ball-shaped beaters, suspended from the strings, to hit the drumheads producing the sound.
Saligram is particular kind of stone which is extremely rare to find, the black stone fossil ammonite is found in the river banks of Gandaki and Narayani River. The spiral shape of these fossils represents the cycles of birth and annihilation. These stones help the shaman’s transit Lower World and The Upper World. These stones are also symbolically depicted as twenty-four forms by the god Vishnu and the pyramid is the “ladders to the heavens.”
Trishul / Trident is the Symbol of Lord Shiva, it has always been for the restoration of peace and divinity in the Universe and the destruction of evil. The three pointed blades of the Trishul represent Brahma, Vishnu and Lord Shiva himself and are said to hold their divine energy. It gives pure thoughts to the mind with devotion which relieve us from Past, present and future or agony of birth, life and death.The physical, mental and spiritual senses of mankind is also signifies by the three blades of the trishul. It destroys the ego of devotees and spreads divinity and Shakti into their souls. Whenever the trishul has been used by Lord Shiva, it has always been for the restoration of peace and divinity in the Universe and the destruction of evil.
A vajra is a weapon used as a ritual object to symbolize both the properties of a diamond (indestructibility) and a thunderbolt (irresistible force); the Sanskrit word having both meanings. The thunderbolt Vajra was originally the symbol of the Hindu rain god Indra (who became the Buddhist Śakra) and was employed by the 8th-century Tantric (esoteric) master Padmasambhava to conquer the non-Buddhist deities of Tibet. Like the diamond, the vajra destroys but is itself indestructible and is thus likened to śūnya (the all-inclusive void).
These instruments along with sacred plant, special stone and the beats sung with mantras help to poses the spirits or deities onto the body. In the Shamanism State of Consciousness (SCC), the shaman typically experiences an ineffable joy in which he sees, an awe of the beautiful and mysterious worlds that open before him. His experiences are like dreams, but waking ones that feel real and in which he can control his actions and direct his adventures. While in the SSC, he is often amazed by the reality of that which is presented. He gains access to a whole new, and yet familiarly ancient universe that provides him with profound information about the meaning of his own life and death and his place win the totality of all existence. During his great adventures in SCC, he maintains conscious control over the direction of his travels, but does not know what he will discover. He is a self-reliant explorer of the endless mansion of magnificent hidden universe. Finally, he brings back his discoveries to build his knowledge to help other.