Shaman's Drum

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article
views updated

Shaman's Drum

Shaman's Drum: A Journal of Experiential Shamanism & Spiritual Healing is a newsstand magazine that has through the 1990s emerged as the major voice of neoshamanism, the new appropriation of shamanism by modern Westerners. Shamans are the major bearers of the spiritual wisdom of pre-modern, preliterate societies (once termed primitive) that underwent a significant reappraisal in the last half of the twentieth century. Anthropologists who had led in the study of such societies discovered a level of sophistication in the thought of pre-modern peoples and others found in their holistic worldviews a wisdom they believed had much to teach contemporary society. Not a small part of the attractiveness of pre-modern cultures was their use of various psychedelic substances as an integral element in their psychic and spiritual activity. The appropriation of wisdom came from around the world, but special attention was paid to the peoples of the Amazon, Tibetan cultures, and Native Americans.

Shaman's Drum emerged in the late 1980s to provide education, information, and networking in the growing neoshamanistic community. It is published quarterly by Cross-Cultural Shamanism Network, a small nonprofit corporation whose major program is the sustaining of the magazine. Shaman's Drum is a subsidized publication, with a minimum of advertising, all directly related to the subject matter.

The majority of the space in each issue of the magazine includes a set of feature articles on such topics as traditional shamanism, environmentalism, and contemporary spiritual healing. The magazine functions in the space between the scholarly study of shamanism and its popular appropriation. Shaman's Drum has given significant space to airing the controversy of non-Indians claiming status as teachers of Native American wisdom and the business of selling Native sacred artifacts for use in secular and other non-Native contexts. Each issue also contains a news column, a book review column, and a directory of individuals and organizations that offer resources for studying shamanism.

Shaman's Drum may be contacted at P.O. Box 97, Ashland, OR 97520.

Sources:

Shaman's Drum. Ashland, Ore., n.d.