Shamanism is a spiritual belief system that focuses on man’s connection to nature. Although rooted in ancient traditions, it is still practiced in many parts of the world today. Shamanistic practices involve rituals for healing and exploring altered states of consciousness. Ceremonies may include rhythmic music and dance; myths or stories; and herbal medicine or mind-altering drugs. For example, in the 19th Century, shamans of the Cherokee American Indian tribe recited spells to treat disease and “frighten away” bad storms.

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