Shamanism has appeared in many cultures and might date back as far as 25,000 years ago. Healing is done by a shaman by interacting with the spiritual. Altered states of consciousness are common in shamanism as this lends a way into the spiritual world.
Shamanism is believed to predate organized religions. Tibetans, Manchu and Mongol were shamanic until Buddhism became popular in the 14th century. Native American shamans were responsible for communing with the spirit world for the benefit of the community.
Shamanism and philosophy varies from region to region. But a common belief in shamanism is that all things have a spirit and everything is connected. The use of trance, healing and journeying to the spiritual world is based on the belief the unseen spiritual reality affects material reality.
Shamans often enter into ecstatic states of consciousness or they use helping spirits such as animals to engage with the spiritual world. Kamlaniye was a healing practice used by Siberian shamans.
Drums, rattles, singing bowls or didgeridoos are examples of instruments used by shamans to induce a shamanic trance state. The trance state is used by shamans to journey into the spiritual world for whatever guidance is needed.
The power animal is a shamans' guide to the spirit world. It is believed by shamans that every individual has a power animal that protects them from illness. It is also believed an individual will become more susceptible to illness without a power animal.