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This book, which covers Visions and hallucinations, explains what causes them and summarises how many hallucinations have been caused by each event or activity. It also provides specific help with questions people have asked us, such as ‘Is my medication giving me hallucinations?’.

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Observations placeholder

Mircea Eliade - Those who know have wings



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

Mircea Eliade – Shamanism Archaic techniques of ecstasy

All this makes us think of the ornithomorphic symbolism of the Siberian shamans’ costumes. The Dyak shaman, who escorts the souls of the deceased to the other world, also take the form of a bird. We have seen that the Vedic sacrificer, when he reaches the top of the ladder, spreads his arms as a bird does its wings and cries ‘We have come to the heaven’ and so forth. The same rite is found in Malekula; at the culminating point of the sacrifice the sacrificer spreads his arms to imitate the falcon and sings a chant in honour of the stars. According to many traditions, the power of flight extended to all men in the mythical age; all could reach heaven, whether on the wings of a fabulous bird or on the clouds.

There is no need to repeat all the details of flight symbolism recorded earlier in these pages (feathers, wings etc). We will add that a universal belief, amply documented in Europe, gives wizards and witches the ability to fly through the air. We have seen that the same magical powers are credited to yogins, fakirs and alchemists. We should make it clear, that here such powers take on a purely spiritual character; flight expresses only intelligence, understanding of secret things or metaphysical truths. 

Among all things that fly the mind is the swiftest ‘ says the Rig veda

And the Pancavimsa Brahmana adds ‘Those who know have wings’

The source of the experience

Shaman unspecified

Concepts, symbols and science items



Science Items

Activities and commonsteps



Activity not known