Observations placeholder

Mircea Eliade - Crystals as the means of making a shaman

Identifier

022980

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

A description of the experience

Mircea Eliade – Shamanism Archaic techniques of ecstasy

It should be noted at this point that parallels for the belief that spirits and initiators introduce rock crystals into the candidates body are to be found elsewhere – among the Semang of the Malay Peninsula, for example.  But it is one of the most striking characteristics of South American shamanism………..

Elsewhere the rock crystals symbolise the shaman’s helping spirits.  In general, for the shamans of tropical South America magical power is concretised in an invisible substance that the masters transfer to the novices, sometimes from mouth to mouth. 

Between the magical substance, an invisible but tangible mass, and the arrows, thorns, rock crystals with which the shaman is stuffed, there is no difference in nature.  These objects materialise the shaman’s power, which, among numerous tribes is conceived in the vaguer and rather abstract form of a magical substance

The source of the experience

South American shamanism

Concepts, symbols and science items

Concepts

Symbols

Arrow
Crystal
Thorn

Science Items

Crystals

Activities and commonsteps

Activities

Commonsteps

References