Shamanism is the oldest religion on the planet!

Shamanism is the oldest religion on the planet! It has existed for many millennia before current day organized religions formed by tens of thousands of years. A shaman can be male or female, young or old, this will be considered as well as the tools of the trade are all described along with the role of trance, possession and Altered States of Consciousness [ASC].

The shaman is a healer. Healer is their principal role in the tribe or the community. They may also be counsellors, confidents, tribal leaders, and spiritual protectors. They have access to, and influence in, the world of benevolent and malevolent spirits, who typically enters into a trance state during a ritual, and practices divination and healing.

In the Shaman’s world view, spirits and demons inhabit everything around us. Every part of the natural environment is alive with different types of sentient forces. Literally, the world is alive, in the mountains, trees, rivers and lakes, rocks, fields, the sky, and the earth. 

There are supernatural spirits and souls. Added to this, each region has its own native spiritual beings, and people living in those areas are powerfully aware of their presence. In order to stay in the spirits good graces, offerings are made, rituals performed and sometimes people will refrain from particular places to avoid the more dangerous forces.

The Shaman sees this world, the physical realm we inhabit, as well as an upper world of light, but which is not heaven, and a lower, darker world which is not hell.

Souls and spirits exist in all the realms. When it is necessary to soul journey any of these realms in an and Altered States of Consciousness [ASC] they do so to learn what is required to heal a recipient [person or tribe].

Let’s not think of the shaman or these realms as dark or evil. Darkness itself is not evil. Each night we close our eyes and fall asleep into darkness. When we meditate, our eyes are closed to cut out distractions around us. 

If we go out at night, we look up into a dark, black night sky which is studded with planets and stars, signs of hope and wonderment. Without the blackness the stars would not shine, and they could not be seen.

When we plant a seed, we put it under the surface of the soil. If we have a plant with roots, we dig a hole and put the roots, which feed the plant and allow it to grow, deep into the darkness of the earth.

Conception of a baby, happens in the darkness of its mother’s body, and it grows there until it is ready to emerge.

Creativity, seems to appear out of nowhere, out of the darkness that is nothingness.

So, why are we taught to fear darkness, why do we hide form it and why is evil associated with it when so many good things happen in it?

Ying and Yang, Fire and Water
Ying and Yang, Fire and Water

The shaman approaches darkness not fearfully, but in the knowledge that it is good, and that good comes from it. The Shaman sees the ying and yang of life, brightness and darkness, fire and water, and embraces both and is fearful of neither.To help with our discovery of Shaman and Shamanism, we will be starting a regular featured “Shamanic Counsel.” We will offer advice guidance from a Shaman’s view point. Click on our contact form to connect with our Shaman community. Enjoy!

Mark is a Registered Reiki Teacher and Practitioner

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Canadian Reiki Association Logo

Mark is a Reiki Master Teacher

Seal of The International Association of Reiki Practitioners
Seal of The International Association of Reiki Practitioners

Mindfulness Meditation on YouTube

Mindfulness is an active state of mind and it is a personal state of mind, there is no one-size-fits-all definition, no single way of practicing. There are no exams to pass, there are no proficiency levels and nothing to buy. It is a way to enhance health and improve performance. It is a tool for self-exploration. Others see it as part of a spiritual journey, a way to develop insight into the human condition and freedom from suffering.

As we move through each day, we spend much of it on auto pilot, when we arrive somewhere or finish a task, we often wonder how we got there or how we managed to complete the task. Auto pilot thinking often includes thinking or “dreaming” about doing or being somewhere else and not where we are or what we are doing. It includes making judgment[s] on what we perceive to be important as compared to our current state or obligations and this is a powerful fuel for our unhappiness about where and what we are. 

Watch our YouTube video on Mindfulness Meditation

The Practical Shaman Book 2

Shamanism is the oldest religion on the planet! 

In terms of human existence, it predates current day organized religions by tens of thousands of years. European cave paintings and carvings showing shaman date from the Paleolithic era. Graves of shaman 12,000-year-old and older have been discovered in Israel and the Czech Republic.

Shamans have played an essential role in the defense of the psychic integrity of their community for thousands of years.

They are pre-eminently the antidemonic champions; they combat not only demons and disease, but also black magicians… In a general way, it can be said that shamanism defends life, health, fertility [and] the world of ‘light’, against death, diseases, sterility, disaster and the world of ‘darkness’… What is fundamental and universal is the shamans struggle against what we could call the ‘powers of evil. Shamans are not only able to foresee the future, but also to change the outcome. As an example, shamans can find out where food or game is located for the community, or averting threats to the community. This is a vital difference between shamanism and clairvoyance.[1]

We will look more in depth at Shamans, Shamanism and the mystical journeys they undertake to heal and help people with compassion and care.

This is the second book in the series on Shamanism and is complimentary to my books on Reiki, there is a direct link between the Shaman’s Helping Spirits and Reiki Guides that help Reiki practitioners bring healing and comfort to people worldwide.

The Reiki, Shamanism and the essential loving mysticism is complementary to our YouTube video series, “Reiki with Candice, Mark and Opame”, and The Shaman Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and more. Together, these expand on Reiki and what it means to be a shaman and enjoy the capabilities of a shaman. 

Visit and subscribe to all of these as well as our blog,


Mark Ashford, MSc,

Usui Tibetan Reiki Master and Teacher

Paper Back – Link Click here

eBook – Link Click here

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International Association of Reiki Practitioners Seal of Membership

The Shaman Podcast Episode 2

Speaker –        Mark A. Ashford

                        Usui Tibetan Reiki Master and Teacher

What this is – Hello and welcome to the “The Shaman Podcast”

What we talk about in this Podcast – 

  • Shamanism
  • Reincarnation
  • Reiki – Reiki energy healing, especially the lineage I follow originated in Tibet, in Shamanistic practices that were recorded in Tibetan Buddhist Texts and practices that from the 8th century onward.

Media – 

  • This Podcast is one of several media available to you to help you understand and develop your awareness of energy healing and practices, history, tradition and a little anthropology. 

The others are:

  • YouTube videos – “Reiki with Candice, Mark, and Opame” – Candice and Opame are two of my guides.
  • Books – eBooks and Paperback books – in full colour available on 
  • Online courses at
  • A blog at

Today we are talking about: Reincarnation

Reincarnation is the philosophical or religious concept that the non-physical essence of a living being, its soul or Spirit starts a new life in a different physical form or body after biological death. It is also called rebirth, transmigration or metempsychosis.

Reincarnation is a central tenet of the main Indian religions; Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Hinduism. Some Hindu groups that do not believe in reincarnation, instead they believe in an afterlife.

It is found in many streams of orthodox Judaism as well as some North American Natives and some Native Australians. 

Historic Greek figures, such as Pythagoras, Socrates, and Plato all believed in and wrote about reincarnation.

The Celts and Druids had a central core belief that the soul does not die. After death it passes from one body into another… the main object for this is education. The soul learns or relearns about existence from one life to another but itself is indestructible. 

Taoist beliefs as far back as the Han Dynasty 206BC – 220AD describe reincarnation as “Birth is not a beginning; death is not an end. There is existence without limitation; there is continuity without a starting-point.”

The majority of the major sects in Christianity and Islam do not believe in reincarnation, but some such as the Cathars, Alawites, Druze, and the Rosicrucian’s do. 

It is the doctrine of salvation in Christianity that prevents belief in reincarnation. Islam believes in a linear life at the end of which a person is judged and sent either to Hell or Heaven. On judgement day all are resurrected. 

Personally, I think of my body as a container, a container in which my soul exists and is able to experience the physical world. Through each life time, my soul learns lessons about existence and balances its Karma, and in so doing, it becomes enlightened. When it achieves enlightenment, it breaks free of this plain of existence and has a choice to move on, or, continue but on its terms. When a particular spirit is so moved by compassion and love for those of us still in the throes of birthing pains again and again, it comes back to teach and heal.

The intermediate or transitional state between death and reincarnation is known as the Bardo in Buddhism. It is in this state that Near-Death Experiences [NDE] are recorded.

It is at this time, after death and before rebirth that the shaman plays his/her most important role. 

A soul or spirit may not immediately be reincarnated to the next physical form. The soul may not accept the death of their physical body, which may have ended because of an accident, sudden illness or even violence. The soul may linger in the current world as a non-physical essence and attach themselves to a physical person such as a loved one or a completely unrelated individual. This may hurt or damage the physical person they have attached to. Damage manifests as illness.

Shamans operate primarily within the spiritual world, which they believe affects the human world. A Shaman healing the soul or spirit of a living person restores their physical body to balance and wholeness. 

In so doing, the Shaman encounters the source of the sickness, the attached soul that has not passed over to be reincarnated and guides it to the spirit world where it can manifest into a new physical being, healed and capable of continuing on their journey.

In other situations, relatives may engage a shaman to seek out the soul of the deceased and help it cross over and reincarnate normally.

I hope this podcast has been informative and interesting. Please, subscribe to the Podcast so receive future episodes, and check out our other materials to help in understanding Shamanism, Reiki and energy healing.

I look forward to seeing you in the next Episode.Bye for now.

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International Association of Reiki Practitioners Seal of Membership

Self Reiki Every Morning


Every Morning! Self Reiki. A self session for healing and the day ahead.

I pull out a chair form the dining table and set it in a space away from any distractions. 

I sit quietly.

I ask Archangel Michael to be present. I ask that him to safe guard the self reiki session I am about to preform from dark and lower energies, and interferences of all types and all sources. 

I ask my Angels, Archangels, ascended masters, mistresses and council of guides to be present. I put a lot of emphasis on the guides that watch over me on my soul path purpose. I ask my Reiki Guides and my Tibetan Helping Spirits, to be present. With all my guides and spirits present I can start the session. Because it is a “self-session” I do not use the traditional Reiki symbols.

I concentrate on aches, pains, and other things that have manifested themselves since the day before. We all have ailments that seemingly appear out of the blue and this is time to deal with them. In Shaman terms, sudden illnesses are caused by souls and spirits affecting my own spirit as they come into contact with me. In Shaman terms they can be made to stop.

I concentrate on healing. Healing is not just the cessation of whatever it is I am feeling, it is the restoration of what I was before the ache or pain. From that point I can grow and change, I can improve.

For example, back pain may be the result of sleeping badly, or needing a new mattress. Yes, focus on the pain fading and going away, but also the strength and flexibility of the muscles and fibres that allow you to participate in your favourite activity. That activity is the ultimate goal.

Spiritually, I reach out to my Helping Spirits and ask them to remove any spirit or soul that is affecting me, especially my back.

At the end of the session, I thank all my Angels, Archangels, ascended masters and mistresses and council of guides and the other guides and helping spirits. And, I thank Archangel Michael who stood guard and end the session. 

At the end of the session I think of manifesting a happy and interesting day, a calm day, one that will not add stress to me.

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Clear Your Space

Why would you clear your space? What is your space? What benefit is doing it?

Energetically, as we move through life, we collect emotional and spiritual baggage and toxins. These can be from people, places, and events.

We bring them home, but we can also bring them within ourselves. They affect our emotions, our thoughts, our intellect. They drag down the energy of our chakras and they can stir or ego.

Many years ago, before I engaged with my Angels and guides to fulfill part of my life purpose which was to become a Reiki Master and Teacher, I would occasionally find myself working with toxic people or in a toxic environment. As I sat in traffic driving home and odd moments when I was supposed to be relaxing watching TV I would mentally go over again and again events that had happened at work. 

I would worry about what the next day would bring.

As a Reiki Master I am able to engage with my angels and guides to recognise these people and situations and negate the affect they have on me, even while they are happening.

I sit quietly, and ask Archangel Michael to sever any energy cords attached to my soul, spirit, aura, physical self or Chakras. I want him to cut the cords and destroy them. I then ask him to fill me up with pure white light and protect me with his energy.

I will do this at the beginning and end of the day, or after being somewhere or with someone I consider toxic. You can speak the short mantra or think it. Some people will “wipe their hands over their face, head and upper body as if they were brushing away cords or spider threads. I have said the mantra in a crowded elevator on my way to lunch after meeting with a particularly toxic individual.

I prefer to think of the cords I am cutting as if they were tentacles with suction cups that attach to things and hold on tightly. I see Michael removing the suction cups and cutting the tentacles which shrivel up and disappear.

You can bring these energy cords, even souls and spirits home with you. You may not see them, or, be aware of them, but they enter your home and stay with you. Freely absorbing your energy. In Tibet and other places where the belief in sprits and souls that have not moved on to their next life is more prevalent, houses will be regularly cleared and doors and windows energetically sealed to prevent these often dark and lower energies from entering. 

If you have heard of smudging a house with White Sage, this is one of the traditional methods of banishing these entities. 

Another approach is to engage with your angles and guides and ask them to help you banish these spirits and energies. 

Ask Archangel Michael to protect you and anyone else in the home, especially animals. As you accomplish the clearing.

Hands in Gassho, I move from room to room, asking them to banish or evict souls and spirits that should not be present. I call out spaces where a spirit or soul may hide or avoid my actions. Such as, under the bed, behind the could, in the draws, behind the door. Anywhere a soul or sprit can hide, I call out for them to be gone!

I include connecting rooms, hallways, etc.

I also ask my angels and guides to seal windows and doors so that spirits and souls cannot re-enter the home. This is all exhaustive, take your time and be patient. Give yourself and your angels and guides time to do their work.

Traditionally, when smudging a space, you leave a window ajar, not necessarily wide open, but a way for the souls and spirits to leave. Do the same when you and your angels and guides are clearing your space.