The simple reality is that a year ago I spent two weeks in a fairly spacious camp carved out of the Peruvian jungle, drinking ayahuasca with a white and mestizo shamans every other day or so. After coming down and coming back, I realized that the years spent simply reading about shamanic experience had done little to nothing to prepare me for what I actually experienced. Not that any academic pursuit ultimately could have, but what it left me with was two things: a desire to go back, regularly, and a desire to understand – both in a directly experiential sense and an academic/critical sense.
So that’s what I’m doing, or what I’m setting out to do. I’m taking classes, preparing to go back to grad school for Religion, and working – by reading, mostly, at this point – to gain a broader understanding of Shamanism, and the way in which the academic study of this has been and continues to be situated in theoretical, philosophical, and anthropological terms. That’s what this blog is about. I want to use this space to talk about shamanism, about philosophy, about what I’m learning, what I’m reading, and my responses to these. I’ll almost certainly post long-winded rants about things that I only peripherally understand, making bold and utterly ill-founded claims that I will then be forced – either by commentary or my own subsequent realizations – to walk back, and apologize for.
But I’m excited about it. I’m looking forward to the effort. There are so many things I find fascinating. Whether you’re sticking around for the ride, or just happen to be passing through, hopefully you’ll find some interesting things here as well.