Observations placeholder

R C Mayne - Native American Indians - Healing by chanting

Identifier

001181

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

This example shows how chanting is used to invoke a trance state.  The trance is induced in the patient – not the healer, the patient to a certain extent cures themselves by being open to healing.  The doctor is providing the means by which trance state is obtained – they are a facilitator.  In the quote below,  the ‘oil’ or ‘incense’  is also helping induce the trance state.  The patient  was cured.

A description of the experience

Four Years in British Columbia and Vancouver Island – R C Mayne 1862

Towards night the doctor came bringing with him his own and another family to assist in the ceremony.  After they had eaten supper, the centre of the lodge was cleared and fresh sand strewed upon it.  A bright fire of dry wood was then kindled and a brilliant light kept up by occasionally throwing oil upon it.  I considered this a species of incense offered, as the same light would have been produced if desired by a quantity of pitch knots which were lying in a corner. 

The patient, well wrapped up in blankets, was laid on her back, with her head a little elevated and her hands crossed on her breast.  The doctor knelt at her feet and commenced singing a song, the subject of which was an address to the dead……… the rest of the people then sung the chorus in a low mournful chant, keeping time by knocking on the roof with long wands they held………

The source of the experience

Native American Indians

Concepts, symbols and science items

Concepts

Symbols

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Commonsteps

Music therapy

References