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I have my roots in Samiland. But my wings have taken me away. I teach shamanism as a world heritage, based on Sami traditions. 

It is obvious that a shaman is influenced by her or his surrounding. First of all it includes living shamans and teachers, those people that keep the fire alive.

Then comes the influence of living mythology and traditions, nature, animals, vegetation, language, climate and so on. All these factors contribute to the way of the Shaman.

But since shamanism is a personal way and vocation, it is influenced by personal factors, the wound, the motivation, talent and interest.

A central theme in Christianity is sin and salvation. The central teaching in Buddhism is about suffering and how to end suffering. In Shamanism it is about wounding and healing. The shaman is a wounded healer. The way of the shaman is the way of healing yourself and others.

In the old days i guess shamans were at work all around Europe. The interesting thing today is were you might find living traditions, and how to wake up more or less dormant traditions.

It is in the nature of shamanism, that it does not die. The roots of shamanism are from the natural mind, inborn in each and one of us. The outer nature and the mytological mind is one and the same.

Shamanism does not die, it just goes to sleep, or it might hide inside the earth or behind the stars. Those who learn the journeywork way or the way of dreaming, might bring it all back into life.

Traditions belong to the past. The experience is in the present breath of life. You have to grow out of your traditions to reach the totality, the holy. For me the sacred experience is more valuable than any traditions. And in the end there are no more rituals left to do, nothing else than keeping the fire alive.

Shamanism is the foundation for the sacredness of life. And one can use the shamanic mind in all trades. You dont have to be a healer of other people to be a working shaman.

I guess every shaman is an artist. The main thing is to be creative, and to contribute to wholeness, peace and beauty in your own genuine way.

Shamanism is a way to study the mind-body-nature connection by help of different kind of support. Support might come from objects, like drums, rattles, sticks, stones, og plants.

Inner support might be visualisations and consentration. But these are all just supporting tools. 

I think there are individuals and traditions that give to much importance and sacredness to the supporting tools, especially the outer tools. That also includes plant-eating shamans.

The real shaman is the one that does not need any tools any more.

I started my path with the traditions from the north. I came to tell you about the sacred white reindeer. Some 20 years has passe since that. Now I know that shamanism is a worldwide tradition.

Seen from inside, all traditions are one. Many ways lead to Rome, they say, especially the Romans When you have gotten there, who cares about the road you took.

By the way, get yourself an animal. A dog is a good friend, a cat is more of a teacher if you cannot keep a tiger.

Ailo Gaup


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