Mircea Eliade – The Turkic Rainbow bridge
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Mircea Eliade – Shamanism Archaic techniques of ecstasy
Shamanic drums are decorated with drawings of the rainbow represented as a bridge to the sky. Indeed in the Turkic languages the word for rainbow also means bridge. Among the Yuruk Samoyed the shamanic drum is called ‘bow’; the shaman’s magic projects him to the sky like an arrow. Furthermore, there are reasons to believe that the Turks and the Uigur regarded the drum as a celestial bridge over which the shaman made his ascent. This idea forms part of the complex symbolism of the drum and the bridge, each of which represents a different formula for the same ecstatic experience; celestial ascent. It is through the musical magic of the drum that the shaman can reach the highest level.