Carlos Castaneda A Short Biography

By Ina Woolcott

‘Carlos Castaneda is one the most profound and influential thinkers of his century. His insights are paving the way for the future evolution of human consciousness. We should all be deeply indebted to him’. ~ DEEPAK CHOPRA

Carlos Castaneda became the student of a Yaqui Shaman, Don Juan, from 1961 till the Autumn of 1965 in Mexico, inspiring him to write 12 books and several academic articles, plus three videos, that portrayed his active participation and experiences, knowledge and skills gained whilst under the tuition of the Yaqui Shamans, primarily Don Juan. Yaqui shamans are indigenous to central parts of Mexico. He was trained in traditional Mesoamerican Shamanism. Castaneda sometimes called this sorcery. Sorcery can be described as having the power to influence events, objects, people, and physical reality. Castaneda to start with used various amounts and types of hallucinogenic herbs and medicinal plants including Jimson Weed, Peyote and Datura to enlarge his vision of reality. Once he understood how to access parallel realities he no longer required hallucinogens. They were to kick start him in the right direction and to open his mind. In his early books he describes how he received the position of nagual from Don Juan. Nagual meaning leader, shape shifter or witch/sorcerer. He went on to lead a party of 3 female seers. Castaneda states that some of his daily perception was focused in a realm accessible, but not easily reachable, by ‘ordinary’ men/women and hinted that he was a connection to this realm, which he named nonordinary reality, for his party of seers. This suggests this reality was real, but completely different to the reality experienced by the masses.

CC claimed to have been born on the 25th December 1931 and supposedly died on April 27th 1998 of liver cancer. Immigration records show that he was born in 1925. Having read his first 5 books so far (I have all 12) I personally think that if he DID say he was born in 1925, this was to erase his personal history. Erasing personal history is described in his 3rd book: Journey to Ixtlan, The Lessons of Don Juan. This is a method that Don Juan taught him. I highly recommend that you read his books, they are awe inspiring and captivating. Ones begun it is hard to put them down!

Receiving his education at the University of California Los Angeles he went on to gain B.A. 1962, and a Ph.D. in 1970. His first 3 books were written whilst an anthropology student and were written as a research log of the time he was an apprentice of Don Juan. He was awarded his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees for these books.

Like with most great people there are those that doubt his work, there are critics who try to debunk his work, saying that his books are fictitious, that he wrote in the traditional way of storytellers, known as ethnopoetics, found among many Native Indian Cultures. Some have tried to assure the certainty and validity of his work with his personal history and that of his apprentices, his party of seers Florinda Donner-Grau, Taisha Abelar and Carol Tiggs. I believe wholeheartedly that he was not just storyteller and what he countered was true, others may not. It was his truth that he uncovered and decided to share with us, a profound one at that. We all have our own truths to uncover. Even IF not true, does it matter? If his writings have helped to enrich and transform peoples lives for the better, like mine, this is all that matters. These books are a definite must read for anyone interested in shamanism, the old ways and the Native Indian Cultures. They offer insights, knowledge and lessons that will hopefully ring true to you, like they did me.

Jungle Fever An Ayahuasca Healing Retreat

Submitted by Ayahuasca Healing

January 8, 2006 From THE SUNDAY TIMES

Jungle fever

Hallucinogens and healing? Indigenous tribes have used shamanic rituals and plants for centuries. Victoria Gill heads to Brazil and discovers the trip of a lifetime.

Blame it on a difficult childhood, on overindulgence, or call it the outcome of a disastrous love affair six months previously — I’d lost myself of late. The lights were on, but my fire had been extinguished. At 27, I was uneasy with the person I had become.

Ayahuasca Healing isn’t about recreational drug use. It’s a holistic process and a daunting undertaking that promises to change you. Without exception, everyone in my group wanted to improve. Ayahuasca Healing was established by Silvia Polivoy, a clinical psychologist and registered shamanic healer, in 1997. At the time, just eight companies offered courses of this nature. Over the past two years, that number has soared, with an estimated 30 to 40 running throughout the Amazon.

According to Dr Rick Strassman, professor of psychiatry at the New Mexico School of Medicine, there are no known cases of psychological or physical fallout, although anyone on SSRI antidepressants is advised not to take ayahuasca, and those with high blood pressure should consult their GP first. Strassman also says that numerous tests have shown ayahuasca’s toxicology levels to humans to be zero. Most commonly prepared by boiling (or soaking), then straining and blessing the stems of the Banisteriopsis caapi plant with the leaves of the DMT-rich Psychotria viridis, ayahuasca has been used for centuries by the indigenous tribes of the rainforest for healing under the guidance of shamans.

With considerable interest in ayahuasca among those in the psychological and neurological fields, it is legal in Brazil when used for spiritual healing, and the course I was about to start comes fully sanctioned by the government.

The journey to the idyllic tropical garden took 23 hours from London. My bedroom was a spacious, polished wooden bungalow on stilts, complete with hammock and veranda. The first two days were spent sussing out the lipstick hippies from the boardroom bohemians between sunbathing sessions, deep tissue massage, swimming in the warm sea, canopy-walking in the jungle and transcendental workshops. The daily Buddhist meditation sessions were focused and balancing, the past-life regression seminars bonding and enlightening. As Dr Mike Isaac, a psychiatrist at Maudsley Hospital confirms, “you need to be supervised by people who know what they are doing”, and we definitely were. By day four, my chakras were wide open and my mind was fully primed.

Ayahuasca is both the most beautiful drug I have experienced and the most putrid-tasting potion I’ve ever imbibed. Blue and gloopy in texture, it’s a flirtatious entity in many ways, inducing profound feelings of love for your contemporaries. For this reason, sex is banned, and I welcomed an environment that allowed me to be intimate with strangers without fear of exploitation.

It’s not kind to everyone: those with a controlling character or a particularly ordered, logical mind may run into difficulties. Vengeful monsters, venomous snakes and constricting boxes weren’t uncommon visitors for my fellow participants. However, the outcome for them (discovering the pleasures of a more carefree existence) was worth it. I am young, playful, creative, open-minded and quite sexual. Experienced users confirm that these are perhaps ideal prerequisites for compatibility with the plant.

Experts have equated a single trip — lasting between four and eight hours — with five years of psychotherapy or 20 years of meditation. The sessions took place on evenings three, five and seven of the seminar, opening with a ritual in which intentions were stated and cups of ayahuasca downed before we took to makeshift beds that lined the beach house. Twenty minutes later, my vision distorted and I became oblivious to all save the living dream inside my mind.

With each trip, I entered a different universe: the first one bright and primary-coloured; the second a dark and carnal underground, flecked with jewels; the third a 30th-century heaven, gleaming white with neon features. Some users report the drug appearing to them as a female spirit. This was how ayahuasca introduced itself to me — as an invisible femme fatale who showed me which habits to discard and how I could improve. Divine clarity via epiphanic beauty: my creative life was thrown into context, my place in the world revealed and my history explained.

My internal baggage manifested as leeches on my skin that I flicked away with ease. I discovered a black, insect-infested chancre that had been growing in my chest for the 20 years since my father left, and spent three hours cleaning it until it was replaced, fertile and green. When I danced, my body became possessed with a raw synchronicity that I have only ever dreamt of attaining, a part of which has stayed with me to this day. I told the drug that I wanted to suffer, that this all seemed too easy, and it said that I had suffered enough, then turned me into an angel and suffused me with sparkling white light. It put blocks in my spine for power, wisdom and stability, and I felt so grateful that I had to keep feeling my lips to check that I was smiling.

On the morning after each trip, each member of the group recounts the experiences of the night before. The mood is one of complete acceptance: by day seven, the men are crying, the make-up is off and we embrace upon greeting.

Due to its global presence, ayahuasca’s case has been argued in courts the world over, but whether it is legal in other countries remains a grey area. In the United States, the battle has been taken to the Supreme Court, after prosecutors found it hard to assert that it is detrimental, with no proven benefits to human health (the requirements for scheduling a class A) drug. Here in the UK, it remains unclassified.

Ayahuasca has none of the after-effects of the recreational drugs used on the party circuit. There is no mental or physical discomfort; instead, the elation, energy and purification continue. My friends noticed the difference in me. Everyone did.

I no longer feel damaged. I’m comfortable in my own skin. I take such pleasure in life and partying that people who don’t know me imagine I’m high, but I’m near teetotal now. And at last I’m happily single. I’ve relinquished outdated friendships and had conversations I’d been putting off for years. I’m in emotional remission. You can’t put a price on a balanced mind, but you can pay to balance it.

SHAMANISM

This is an ancient healing practice based on the belief that every malady has a spiritual dimension. Rituals such as deep meditation and the ingestion of hallucinogenic plants aim to aid contact with the spirits of ancestors in order to undo past ills. Shamanism is prevalent among the world’s indigenous tribes, and there has been huge Western interest in recent years. There were elements of shamanism in the rave scene; and, these days, you can go on shamanic courses anywhere from Wales to Hawaii, and have shamanic therapy at luxury spas such as Post Ranch Inn, in Big Sur, California. Modern healers often combine clinical and shamanic psychology. Essentially, though, it’s all about reconnecting with nature.

Ayahuasca Healing www.Ayahuasca-Healing.net offers an all-inclusive 7 or 11-day seminar.

The Celestine Prophecy James Redfield

I have 3 of James Redfields book, and have seen the movie version of The Celestine Prophecy , ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!!!

The Celestine Prophecy contains secrets currently changing our world. Drawing on the ancient wisdom found in a Peruvian manuscript, it tells you how to make connections between the events happening in your own life right now and lets you see what is going to happen to you in the future.

This diamond of a book is a work that has come to light at a time when the world deeply needs to read its words. The story it tells is a gripping one of adventure and discovery, but it is also a guidebook that has the power to crystallize your perceptions of why you are where you are in life, and to direct your steps with a new energy and optimism as you head into tomorrow.

What 1 reader on Amazon said:

I first read this book about 3 years ago when I was 16. At that time I was depressed, ill and thought nothing could make that go away. I read this book in just 3 days, I just couldn’t put it down. I can only describe it as a ray of light that shattered that darkness and changed my life. I have read the other reviews posted here and resent those people who try to make those of us who enjoyed this book look naive. I am an English honours degree student at one of the top universities in the country and yes, I recognise the weaknesses in the books written style, but I feel we should overlook this. James Redfield is not trying to present us with a piece of great literature, he trying to give us something enlightening, something to make us think and give some hope for our future, something many of us desperately need. The Celestine Prophecy remains one of my favourite books, I remain grateful to James Redfield for writing it and mostly I would hope to unreservedly reccommend this book to everyone who feels there is something missing in their life.

What 1 person said about the DVD version of the book:

This is a very uplifting and inspiring movie version of the amazing book The Celestine Prophecy. James Redfield the author produced this himself in order to retain his creative control over how this was made and it shows. If you have ever read any of the Celestine Prophecy books you will really enjoy this movie and it follows the story line of his first book completely. I was truly moved and inspired by the message, and I will give this DVD out as gifts for all my friends. There will always be people who will not understand this kind of Spiritual film and give it a bad review but that’s ok, as more and more people are looking for inspiring films to see and own and I believe that this one is definitely one worth adding to your library. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Carlos Castaneda S Books Set 1 The Mastery Of Awareness

By Ina Woolcott

“For me the world is weird because it is stupendous, awesome, mysterious, unfathomable; my interest has been to convince you that you must assume responsibility for being here, in this marvellous world, in this marvellous desert, in this marvellous time. I wanted to convince you that you must make every act count, since you are going to be here for only a short while; in fact, too short for witnessing all the marvels of it” Don Juan to Carlos Castaneda, Journeys to Ixtlan

Carlos Castaneda’s 12 books are sorted into 3 sets of 3, in harmony with the Toltec mastery, which is as follows: The Mastery of Awareness, The Mastery of Transformation, and The Mastery of Intent. Included in each Mastery is also a 4th book, with complete summary and cross reference detailing the most important teachings from the overall work in each set. These extra books were published after the authors death. So the books aren’t necessarily in chronological order. The chronological order would be as follows:

1 – The Teachings of Don Juan, A Yaqui Way of Knowledge
2 – A Separate Reality
3 – Journey to Ixtlan
4 – Tales of Power
5 – The Second Ring of Power
6 – The Eagle’s Gift
7 – The Fire From Within
8 – The Power of Silence
9 – The Art of Dreaming
10 – Magical Passes
11 – The Active Side of Infinity
12 – The Wheel of Time

What follows here are the 3 sets the books are placed in including a brief description of each book

Set 1 – The Mastery of Awareness

This set of work stresses the importance of awareness from the world of everyday material things to the world of the Nagual (spirit). Over the course of this stage of the warrior-travellers development, he/she makes a purposeful, conscientious effort to depreciate self-importance. It is with utmost importance that the student is encouraged to take action and accept responsibility for their lives.

The Books and a short description of each

* The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968) contained in this amazing book are detailed descriptions of plant allies, special exercises and the journey in the direction of knowledge. Plant allies used are Mescalito(or Peyote), Mushrooms, Jimson Weed and Datura.

* A Separate Reality: Further Conversations with Don Juan (1971) this book in great detail examines the idea of will, controlled folly and seeing (as opposed to the act of just looking) as tools a utilised by the warrior-traveller to become a man/woman of knowledge. There are also more funny and moving conversations with don Juan, beautiful yet at times frightening journeys undertaken together with plant allies. Castaneda attempts to see beyond the surface realities of life meaning he must try and lay aside all preconceptions, a supreme effort of will and great courage.

* Journey to Ixtlan: The Lessons of Don Juan (1972) Lessons in reaffirmations from the world around us, erasing personal history, losing self-importance, death as an advisor, assuming responsibility, becoming a hunter, being inaccessible, disrupting the routines of life, the last battle on earth (about death), becoming accessible to power, the mood of a warrior, a warriors last stand, the gait of power, not-doing and dreaming

* Magical Passes: The Practical Wisdom of the Shamans of Ancient Mexico (compilation) (1998) contents contain descriptions and photos of sorcery based physical movements designed to boost well-being, a system which became known as Tensegrity. Before dying, he wished to pass on all he had learnt in a lifetime of deep immersion in non-ordinary reality. The magical passes, as suggested by Castaneda, are probably the most valuable part of his legacy, even more so than all the other extraordinary books detailing his apprenticeship with Don Juan and his development as a nagual in his own right.

For Book Set 2 follow link:
Carlos Castaneda‘s Books Set 2 – The Mastery of Transformation

Keepers Of The Children Native American Wisdom And Parenting Laura Ramirez

Keepers of the Children, Native American Wisdom and Parenting uses little known Native American secrets to teach parents how to raise children who know their nature and use their strengths to create lives of meaning and contribution. By bringing up children to unfold the uniqueness in their hearts, parents touch the depths of their own. By teaching children the secrets of genuine fulfilment, they grow up to lead purposeful lives and cherish their parents for this gift.

I personally have this book in my collection, and it is a truly amazing book. It is easy to read, and makes sense – you read it and think how obvious, why didn’t I think of that? If only all children were raised this way. (Minus the going to public school bit!) I love the Native American wisdom and simple yet effect adnd correct approach to life, how they treat each other and themselves.

The Magic Of Machu Picchu

By Carolynne Melnyk www.AndeanTriangle.com

Andean Shaman and Healing Guide

All of my life has been a spiritual journey.

I’ve been all around the world on this journey and when it finally led me to Machu Picchu, Peru, I knew I had found my spiritual home. And now it seems natural that I personally guide others who also want to explore the mystical powers and gifts of this ancient sacred site.

I have always had psychic abilities and been drawn to nature. Yet the practical side of me pursued two degrees in Education and Educational Management. In 1983, I left Canada for a two year job in Nigeria. This turned into 20 years of wandering around the globe working in international schools in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

During these years exploring different cultures and places I developed more compassion and understanding for all the people on Earth, a greater trust in my intuition and the many synchronicities that flowed in my life, as well as a deep respect and love for Mother Earth. So it was a natural step for me to become interested in shamanism which holds that we are connected to all people, plants, animals, rocks and earth on this planet as well as all things in the universe.

Over the years my interest in shamanism led me to work with shamans in Ethiopia, Mexico, Brazil and Peru. But it was in March, 2003 that this interest changed my life very drastically. While working with a shaman in Brazil I had a powerful vision that showed me very specifically that it was time to go to Peru and more specifically to Machu Picchu. I was shown that if I followed this path it would be necessary to step outside my comfortable world of international education with all of its perks and devote myself to the path of spiritual understanding. It was an enormous decision but I knew within that this was what I had to do. So in June, 2004 I found myself in Cusco with only my vision and trust in a higher force to guide me.

A short while after arriving in Peru I made my way to Machu Picchu. The moment I had my first view of the sanctuary of Machu Picchu I knew that after 20 years of wandering I had come home. With tears running freely down my cheeks the site spoke to my heart in a way that no other place on Earth had.

It was during this first visit that I met the Guardian shaman of Machu Picchu. From that first meeting we both felt like we had known each other all our lives and a strong connection was made. Since then, with the help of this man as well as a few others, I have learned to walk the path of the shaman and share my knowledge with those who come on my guided journeys.

Although I am considered a shaman, it is only a label, for everyone is a shaman waiting to be awakened and once the spirit is awake then the learning, growing and expanding continues as long as we walk on this Earth. The label is not important, rather it is the integrity with which one walks the path that is most important.

Andean shamanism is like shamanism the world-over in that it is nature based. The essence of Andean shamanism is a strong connection to Pachamama or Mother Earth, all the elements of nature and a respect for the divine creation. By connecting with all the elements of nature and the divine flow of the universe we also learn to flow and create. We literally become part of the oneness of all things.

Andean shamanism teaches us that all things have energy and properties beyond the material and physical and when we learn to work with them we discover their hidden powers as well as the great powers hidden within ourselves. When one uses the techniques of the Andean shamanism, one is able to connect and transcend the physical and enter the realm of the spirit world.

Since the Andeans believe that all the Earth is sacred the whole planet is considered a sacred place. But there are places that are considered special or sacred based on location, the combination of various elements of nature such as the relationship between earth, air, and water or those considered to have special powers or spirits.

Machu Picchu is considered one of those sacred places because of its location within concentric circles of mountains, the river circling the base of the mountain it stands upon, the great quantities of quartz crystal found there (which is why it is also called the Crystal City) and the fact that it was constructed in complete harmony with the physical and cyclical aspects of nature.

The most important spirit in the Andes is the Apus or the mountains. The Apus represent the Hanac Pacha or the upper sphere and act as antennae to other dimensions. There is an inner and outer ring of mountains which act as guardians and create a power circle with Machu Picchu at the centre. Each of these mountains has special properties and energies. To those who come with a clear and pure intent these ancient mountains will open up and share their energetic powers with you.

Machu Picchu sits at 2,450 metres above sea level and around its base flows the waters of the Wilkamayu River that eventually flows into the Amazon River. In the Andean shamanic tradition, water is a great purifying force.

We begin our journey in Lake Titicaca because by working with the water to wash and balance us we begin to clear away any heavy energy we are carrying around with us. It also helps to open us to the work we do with the other elements in the different locations.

Lake Titicaca is also considered sacred because it is from Lake Titicaca that Wiracocha, the creator, brought the sun, moon, stars and planets out of the lake to take their place in the sky thus providing light for a dark world. With time the sun and the moon had children who also arose from the lake and went on to populate the four corners of the world.

Another sacred place is the ‘Gate of the Gods’ or Amara Muru Doorway. This inter-dimensional portal, which faces Lake Titicaca, lies in a wonderland of strange natural rock formations that are in stark contrast to the surrounding area. Legend says that Amara Muru stepped through the portal leaving this three-dimensional world forever. There are many legends in the area telling of people who have gone through the portal never to return (although I do know one person who entered the portal and did return). The area within the triangle of Lake Titicaca, Machu Picchu and the Amazon is considered a power vortex. The jungle of the Amazon basin is also considered sacred because of the great life force that lies within it. Within these three areas are strong energy lines that connect the various sites and the regions. In addition to these energy lines, each of the areas we visit on my guided tour connects us to the four main elements. Lake Titicaca represents the element of water that washes and balances us. Machu Picchu represents the element of air that purifies and enlightens us. The Amazon represents earth that cleans and transforms us. Above us, Tayta Inti (or Father Sun), shines on us representing the element of fire that transmutes and sanctifies us.

I had a very powerful experience working with the earth element. We do a ceremony where we ask Pachamama to take or absorb something in our life that we no longer want to carry around. In this instance, I wanted to be rid of a fear I was carrying. In this ceremony each person runs around a circle stating the thing that that they wish the earth to rid of them of. Then after some time we lay on the ground in the exact middle of the circle with our belly buttons pressed into the earth and feel what ever it is we are getting rid of the flow into the earth. As I lay there feeling the earth take my fear I began to feel my self enter the ground and Mother Earth wrap her arms around me like a mother would do for a child. As my fears left I felt the intense love that Mother Earth has for each us. This experience made me realize the earth is a living breathing soul.

I had one client who was carrying around great amounts of anger and frustration. After leaving the lake and proceeding along to Machu Picchu and then the Amazon, the source of the anger and frustration began to reveal itself and she was able to acknowledge and clear them. Upon returning to her home and work, her friends and family thought that a new person had arrived home. Since then she has made changes in her life to incorporate what she learned on this trip.

I had another client who, after the tour, left a job that he disliked and found the courage to pursue a career more in line with what he really wanted to do.

The tour is designed specifically so that awareness opens gradually so that there is some time for reflection and integration. Each place and each step leads to the next level. This is more than a tour it is an experience!

As published in Mosaic Mind, Body and Spirit Magazine. May 2007 edition.

Carlos Castaneda S Books Set 2 The Mastery Of Transformation

By Ina Woolcott

“You must push yourself beyond your limits, all the time. The only possible course that a warrior has is to act consistently and without reservations. You know enough of the warrior’s way to act accordingly, but your old habits and routines stand in your way.” Tales of Power

Here the warrior-traveller goes on the journey to purify and regain energy. He also hones (to sharpen and focus ones attention) his only link to All That Is, intuition. By constantly testing this connection for verification and gradually getting rid of all doubts, he/she becomes impeccable at this. Their fate is accepted by them and they commit to following a path with heart.

The Books and a short description of each

* Tales of Power (1975) up until now don Juan has performed his acts of power in his world. Now, in a sudden and unexpected encounter he will enter Castaneda’s urban world, at ease in a well tailored suit. He carries out his lessons in crowded and busy streets. accounts on the points of perception in the body or luminous cocoon and Dreaming Double. Also writings about the Tonal, or 1st attention, which is ‘ordinary’ waking reality and the right brain awareness or possibly even the left brained. There is too information about the Nagual, which is the 2nd attention, the unknown realities to most people and the left brain awareness.
For more info on the luminous cocoons which surround us according to Castaneda, please readCarlos Castaneda, What is a Nagual

* The Second Ring of Power (1977) herein events are described that take place preceding Don Juan’s departure, experiences with the women warriors of the original Nagual’s party, the 2nd attention or the second ring of power, losing “human form”, human mould, dreaming and gazing. Dona Soledad is introduced to the reader in this book by Castaneda. He is subjected to a series of terrifying tricks by Soledad. Thus, Castaneda is initiated into experiences so intense and absolutely terrifying that every reason and opinion of life that was Don Juan’s legacy to his student is assaulted.

* The Eagle’s Gift (1981) in this haunting and deeply personal book, the reader is taken into the very heart of sorcery. Imagination and reason are challenged. The foundations in what we believe is ‘natural’ and ‘logical’ are shaken, bringing us a world full of terrors, mysterious forces and dazzling insights. Also: the power that creates, destroys and rules the universe (or at least the 48 bands of earth), description about the eagles command to man, the Nagual’s rule, the various levels of petty tyrants, the way toward freedom, self-stalking, power spots and the intricacies of dreaming, seeing together, crossing the boundaries of affection, losing the human form, the right and the left side awareness, the fixation of the second attention,

* The Active Side of Infinity (compilation) (1999) – recapitulation (reviewing ones life), making a log of significant life events (as seen by the spirit). This book was written by anthropologist and shaman Castaneda immediately before his death. Don Juan his teacher considered that collecting the memorable events in their lives, was for shamans, the preparation for life after death, the entry into what they called, the active side of infinity. This is Castaneda’s most autobiographical and intimately revealing work ever, the fruit of a lifetime of experience and perhaps the most moving in his life work.

For Book Set 3 go to Link:
Carlos Castaneda‘s Books Set 3 – The Mastery of Intent

Land Of The Spotted Eagle By Luther Standing Bear

“I can now see that humaneness is not a thing which can be ordered by law. It is an ideal to be lived.” Luther Standing Bear

I am currently reading this book, and have only read a couple of chapters so far but I LOVE it. It is hard to put down and I have been devouring the pages when I can. It is lovely to read about Standing Bears upbringing – that really is an ideal to live by! I recommend it to anyone wishing an honest glimpse into the lives of but one band of TRUE Native Americans.

About the book:

“A serious and notable contribution to racial understanding.” Saturday Review of Literature.

Standing Bear’s dismay at the condition of his people, when after 16 years absence he returned to the Pine Ridge Sioux Reservation, may well have served as a catalyst for the writing of this book, first published in 1933. In addition to describing the customs, manners, and traditions of the Teton Sioux, Standing Bear, as Richard N. Ellis notes in the foreword, “also offered more general comments about the importance of native cultures and values and the status of Indian people in American society.” With the assistance of Melvin R. Gilmore, curator of ethnology at the University of Michigan, and his niece and secretary, Warcaziwin, Standing Bear aimed to tell the white man “just how we lived as Lakotans.” His book, generously interspersed with personal reminiscences and anecdotes, includes chapters on child rearing, social and political organisation, the family, religion, and manhood. Standing Bear’s views on Indian affairs and his suggestions for the improvement of white-Indian relations are presented in the two closing chapters. Standing Bear’s “My People The Sioux” (1928), edited by E. A. Brininstool, also is available in a Bison Books edition, with an introduction by Richard N. Ellis.

The Shamans Healers And Psychic Surgeons Of The Philippines Part 3 Placido Palitayan

Submitted by Howard G. Charing

A healer and psychic surgeon working in Baguio is Placido Palitayan. He is an extremely confident and skilled psychic surgeon. It was again a privilege to meet, interview, make videos, and work with him. I have a full interview on video with Placido, and this is the transcription following some healing sessions where Placido operated on three people (including me):

Howard: Can you tell me more about the healing and psychic surgery that you have just done which we have just videoed?

Placido: I am not a medical doctor, so it is difficult to provide a medical description or explanation. In the healing process, when I heal, I heal with my total being, my mind, my heart, and my soul is praying that god will help you.

The mystery here is the power, or energy, or what we call god. Our bodies are complex, often having problems caused by emotions. Everybody has that; no one is perfect in health. But our mind in connection (he points upwards) to him, is doing miracles, moment to moment in our life.

Howard: When you start your healing as I have just seen, you say your prayers and you meditate, and this external power enters you, and then you start to make the openings in the person’s body. Is that how you see this?

Placido: Yes it is something like that. I am doing the healing, I am not thinking about myself, or about anything. I just serve, so that the divine power will work through me, the patient just has to relax, and open their mind, not thinking about any problems, so that the divine energy works through and through the whole body system.

Howard: I understand. This is consistent with what I have heard from other psychic surgeons.

Placido: This is how the healing works.

Howard: I was feeling very relaxed with you, feeling very open, and now I am feeling a lot better, much clearer.

Placido: I know.

Howard: I would like to ask you some questions. As we have discussed, I bring groups of Westerners to the Philippines, and they would like to know more about the healer, their background and so on. So can you tell me how you started your healing work?

Placido: I think that it is a divine plan, and beyond my knowledge. I was very young when I broke my fingers. It was after my studies at school, and I was with my friends. I had to leave my friends as it was twilight time, as I wouldn’t be able to see my way home in the dark. The place I used to go was downhill, and I ran home as it was getting dark, I fell and tumbled down, and struck my finger on a big rock. My fingers went completely backwards (he demonstrates this). In my mind, because I was very young, only nine, I had thought that I had destroyed my hand. I only had one thing to do, and that was to pray. It wasn’t what I had learned in church, or what others had taught me. I prayed very deeply in my soul, a very short prayer, I can’t remember what I said even now, but it was from my soul. Suddenly after my prayer, I rubbed my hand, and shook it, and it was perfectly restored.

I went home, I could not, I could not talk, and I was so amazed at what had happened. I did not think that god did it. The next day when I went to school, the teacher asked “Placido, will you answer the question?” I could hear her, but could not speak. I was maybe in what they call a in a trance. A trance which nobody knew where it came from. The teacher came close up to me, and slowly waved her hands a few inches from my face. I knew that she was doing this, but I could still not respond. Only when she touched me, could I reply “yes maa’m”, only then was I aware.

Since that time, I couldn’t go to school anymore, as they said I was crazy! So after that I went in the mountains in solitude. In the mountains there is nobody, only sugarcane. So all I was doing was drinking was the sugarcane, and just thinking. I knew that I must be crazy; I said to myself “what am I doing here, I’m only eating sugarcane”. I could not even urinate as I had drunk too much sugar from the sugarcane. So I knew that I had to drink otherwise I would destroy my health. And that was the beginning of what they now call ‘spiritual awareness’. So after that, when ever I saw people, I was able to tell if they were ill, sick, or unhappy. I also found that I could talk to them in ways that put them at ease or made them feel happy. They said to me “you are not crazy, because you know how to answer our problems”. I said that I didn’t know how, but being young, and having nothing to lose, I said just what I saw, and they started to believe me.

When the Missionaries came, and talked about god, I felt magnetised by their words, and I became close to them. I asked if I could go with them, and when they visited other communities, I would touch people and they would get better. I realised that what the bible was saying about healing was happening to me. Later the missionaries became jealous of me, as when I talked to people they liked me, and would gather by me and not the missionaries.

The missionaries didn’t want me to be with them, and I became alone again, I felt as if no one liked me. Anyway I had to work, as here in the Philippines you have to so you can eat. My work was very hard, digging, breaking rocks, hard work like that. It’s a long story, but then along came the great psychic healer Eleuterio Terte (he was the first psychic surgeon), then Tony Agpoa, Ricardo Gonzales, and they all wanted me to work with them. I said that I couldn’t divide myself into three. Anyhow I decided to work with Gonzales (he made a better offer!). I was still very young and didn’t yet speak English. I travelled with Gonzales to Australia in August 1958. After that I was able to complete my education.

Howard: May I ask how old you are?

Placido: 65

Howard: Listening to your story, it is obvious that your healing has developed over the years, and you perform your work with great confidence. Did you start with ‘magnetic’ and psychic healing?

Placido: At the beginning of my studies with Gonzales, I went to a tribal community of head-hunters. One of them had a big tumour, and I started to manipulate (magnetic massage) the area, and suddenly the body opened and blood spurted up and flowed out. I didn’t know why or how this had happened, as I was only manipulating the body. Then I looked behind me, and the Chief had raised his arm and holding a large bone, he wanted to kill me. He must of thought that when the blood spurted out, that I had stabbed the patient. The Chief wanted to cut off my head (they are head-hunters!), but the bone broke in half, and his arm couldn’t move. Then he saw that there was no more blood and that the wound had healed. The patient was starting to get up and was laughing too. The Chief smiled, and said that I should stay here, be with his family. I said “no thanks, I do not belong here, I belong to all people who need my help”.

Howard: Well at least you made some good friends there. As they say, it’s good to be on friendly terms with the head-hunters!

Placido: Yes, he wanted to kill me, and then he became my very close friend. After that I came to Baguio, and I joined with the healers. I didn’t do any psychic surgery, as I thought that this happened to me just once. In Baguio, I met with Tony Agpoa who was working with hundreds of people. He said “Placido, I am so tired, it is already 5 ‘o clock and I still have many people to heal! I said that I will help, and in 30 minutes, I helped all the people with psychic surgery. I was very organised, I made sure that everybody was prepared, and I just did it. He was very surprised, “how did you do it?” He asked, “All those people in such a short time”.

There are many stories to tell, but all I want is peace. I give spiritual advice, I talk not about religion, as to me religion is man made, ‘Him’ (pointing upwards) in his work is the most important thing for me. I need to train my son to do this work and help me.

Howard: Listening to what you have been saying, it really seems that the most important thing is this ‘feeling’, as a young boy you gad no thoughts about what was happening, but you had a feeling. Well I really want to thank you for your time, and I appreciate you sharing your story and adventures with us, many thanks for that.

Related links:
Healers, Shamans, and Psychic Surgeons of the Philippines
The Enigma of Jun Labo

Howard G. Charing is a partner in Eagle’s Wing Centre for Contemporary Shamanism. His initiation into the world of Shamanism was sudden, which was caused by a serious accident, which resulted in severe injuries and a near-death experience. After many months of physical pain and disability, he had a transformational experience, which started him on a path to healing. If you like to know more about his work, Howard conducts “Plant Spirit Medicine” journeys to the Amazon Rainforest.

Carlos Castaneda S Books Set 3 The Mastery Of Intent

By Ina Woolcott

“The total goal of the shamanistic knowledge that we are handling is the preparation for facing the definitive journey: the journey that every human being has to take at the end of his life. Through their discipline and resolve, shamans are capable of retaining their individual awareness and purpose after death. To collect the memorable events in their lives is, for shamans, the preparation for their entrance into that concrete region which they call the active side of infinity.” The Active Side of Infinity

Once enough superfluous energy is amassed by the warrior-traveller, and sufficient personal power, then they are able to activate the latent second attention. Now dreaming becomes possible. They continue to walk the path with heart, to maintain their impeccability and to wait for an opening to freedom.

The Books and a short description of each

* The Fire from Within (1984) – the extraordinary body of teachings of Don Juan begin to be recounted whereby the gently mocking, often terrifying Nagual don Juan brought Castaneda to the point where he was able to leap off the top of a flat mountain into an abyss. This was made possible by the long apprenticeship he had with don Juan and by a unique state of perceptual clarity during which the Secrets of the Mastery of Awareness were revealed. A glimpse into the stunning world of sorcerers is provided that is clear and dizzying in its far-reaching implications. Making clear step by step the mastery of awareness, The 1st (known) and 2nd (unknown) attention are covered as well as the unknown (outside our luminous cocoons), the assemblage points and the positions, twin worlds of organic and inorganic beings, the eagles emanations, the glow of awareness, great bands of emanations, stalking, intent and the dreaming position, the earths boost, the rolling force, the death defiers, the mold of man, the journey of the dreaming body and breaking the barriers of perception..

* The Power of Silence: Further Lessons of Don Juan (1987) stories centring around mastery of intent, set into what were called sorcery cores.

* The Art of Dreaming (1993) based on 6 years of meditation and study and the teachings of the sorcerer/shaman Don Juan, this is a unique and extraordinary and exciting adventure of the psyche. Castaneda uses powerful and ancient techniques to alter his state of consciousness embarking on journeys into new worlds (realities JUST as valid as ‘ordinary’ reality) meeting remarkable but dangerous entities. He unites his energy body with another dreamer, Carol Tiggs who is also an apprentice of Don Juan, in order to dream and explore. Thus new knowledge and understanding of our multi layered world is gathered. This profound book enables you to fully take part in Castaneda’s eye-opening and thrilling discoveries and endeavours. After reading it, you will find it hard to view the world in the way you used to. There are also techniques to help master and control consciousness in dreaming.

* The Wheel Of Time : The Shamans Of Mexico (compilation)(2000) this is a recollection of the mood in which each previous book was written. Significant quotes from each previous book are provided. This is written in the style of summary and most pages are no more than a paragraph) long. Very good for finding wisdom, guidance and inspiration. The main theme is the warriors way, not recommended if you have never read a Castaneda book before. It is best to start at the beginning, and to leave this book till last, like the icing on the cake so to speak.

To find out more about set 1 of Castaneda’s books please go to:
Carlos Castaneda‘s Books Set 1 – The Mastery of Awareness