Author Topic: Burning Man and Shamandome/Shamanistas  (Read 5639 times)

Offline Odelle

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Burning Man and Shamandome/Shamanistas
« on: August 30, 2013, 07:44:33 am »
I was surprised to find that a search did not give a single hit for the annual Burning Man festival, currently happening now. This year's festival theme is "Cargo Cult", which I'll just let be for now: 

I grew up in the Denver/Boulder scene with plenty of exposure to Rainbow people, psychedelic drugs and people who seem to live the Burner lifestyle year-round, so I don't have much desire to go myself, which I guess means I shouldn't knock it, so I won't. Some Burners have publically acknowledged that some of the Paiute folks whose traditional lands, including some important sites, the festival is held on, aren't all that thrilled about Burning Man:

It's a big event that's been going on since 1992 without massive protests or anything, but maybe people on this Forum have stories or thoughts they'd like to share.

One thing that has raised my suspicions is a Shaman camp, the Shaman Dome:

They seem to be Core Shamanist, Michael Harner fans:

As a form of respect, we like to reserve the term “Shaman” for our teachers and practitioners from native cultures. Shamanista is a term coined in the seminars of Dr. Barnaby Ruhe to denote a contemporary practitioner and/or follower of ancient ritual traditions who incorporates a sense of freedom and various healing modalities in a positive relationship that respects ancient traditions. Shamanista is what happens when we as individuals take the initiative to combine our art and expression with our concept of healing and transformation, in practice and our everyday lives.

Shamanista sounds just sounds like barista to me, which is fitting for SF, I guess.

This is their vision statement:

Shamandome is an inclusive, collaborative, co-operative, co-created collective of diversely skilled and passionate healers, Shamans, Shamanistas, spiritual practitioners, body workers and mediums who honor all spiritual traditions and come together in a ceremony centered community to learn, grow, heal and serve.

We help heal people by putting them in touch with the spirits that are already with them and by showing them how to “live in ceremony” through the direct experience of various methods, modalities, rituals, workshops and rites of passage that facilitate a reawakening of the indigenous mind.

Our tribe has fluid and flexible roles aligned with spirit, spontaneity and intuition. We work together and play together and facilitate the Great Turning by helping people give birth to their whole humanity.  We are a transformational tribe that aids in the evolution of this new paradigm. We lead by the example of our beautiful, peaceful, balanced, loving, wise, intentional community and our commitment to our own individual spiritual development and practices.

They have quotes from what I assume are anthros talking about Aboriginal "shamans" and such, but don't make specific claims about actual cultural teachings or even claim that what they're teaching is "indigenous"--at least on this website. They have classes to:
Find Your Power Animal - (PREREQUISITE for all Extraction and Soul Retrieval Workshops)
We will take you on a drumming journey to reawaken the connection with your spirit guide - your Power Animal. Ask your spirit guide for transformation, healing, or guidance. Checking in with spirit puts you in a Shamanic state of consciousness where your psyche integrates body mind spirit towards healing transformation.

Soul Retrieval "How-To" Workshop - (PREREQUISITE: Find Your Power Animal Workshop) A healing journey to find your lost soul parts and bring them back to you. Soul parts can wander off during and just before trauma, abuse, car accident, surgery, or bad break-up. Co-dependency typically displaces soul parts. We can bring them back to you, then you will later be responsible for deciding how to incorporate them back into your life.

Extraction Healing "How-To" Workshop - (PREREQUISITE: Find Your Power Animal Workshop) The Shaman journeys to the drumbeat in order meet with their power animal and spirit guides. Following a brief diagnostic journey, the Shaman can then remove bad vibes, nasty hitchhikers, stuck up energy, anger or frustrations. We all need a clean out!

Shamanista Healing Circle - Dispirited? Stuck? Shamanista healings use different modalities but also channel spirit to do the job for you. We clean up negative energies, rescue lost souls, we get you through your shadow to flow. You are not broken and we do not fix you - you do it. This is the first day of the rest of your life. We celebrate your healing transformation.

Healing Strategies Seminar - Sharing Shamanic strategies within Reiki, Yoga, Massage, etc. for protection, extraction of negative energy, channeling helping spirits. We all have stories of clearing dark energy, shielding ourselves, psychically intuitively knowing what needs to be done, even a sense of having spirit helpers move through us.

Shamanism, Psychedelics, & Neuroscience - A seminar on mind altering rattling, drugs and the power of the mind, but with intention and cosmic connection.

Alchemy Divination for Healing - A journey for a spirit guide who knows how to work at a cellular level. The journey will be accented with sound healing (Tibetan bowls). The warm up will include an exercise to empower the light body.

Has anyone heard anything else about these guys?


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Re: Burning Man and Shamandome/Shamanistas
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2013, 04:29:24 pm »
Burning Man doesn't take place on any native sites, to my knowledge.  Burners show up at native sites and ceremonies year round. (Which of course is a no no, IMHO). 

I've been twice.  I don't regret it at all.  Life as art, drunken revelry, and community are central themes to burning man.  Undoubtedly there are shameons that show up.  The last year I went there were some 38,000 people there.  At that moment in my life I was up to my eyeballs in trying to embrace my, "inner indian".  I didn't really encounter any of that.  There was a ton of new-agey stuff.  Also included were naked people, loud music, and copious amounts of really good pot.  At least, I heard the pot was good.  ;)

For me it was more about a place to be totally uninhibited.  I don't just mean running around with no clothes.  There (were) few rules to abide by.  Participation in everything was encouraged.  I made friends there I won't ever forget.

I think it took 9 months to banish the last of the dust from my car. 

Offline Odelle

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Re: Burning Man and Shamandome/Shamanistas
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2013, 08:41:09 pm »
I'm showing my bias, I guess, conflating two separate things and maybe tarring BM unfairly. Actually, the Paiute complaints were about an event that happened in May of last year, the Symbiosis Gathering, which did occur on sacred lands. The event attracted lots of Burning Man participants and the Burner community commentary page,, posted some information advertising the event but also reminding people that appropriate behavior for Symbiosis Gathering would be different than for Burning Man, namely people should keep their clothes on, etc. and ends with this:

…This is not the place to get publicly naked or intoxicated as part of your own, personal “shamanic” ceremony. And this is definitely not the place to bring that crazy Indian headdress you got from the costume store and wore at the Burn one year!  If you want to know more, read this excellent blog.
  It then links to Adrienne K's blog,

This seems like a pretty good faith effort to keep people in line from the Burner community to me. I assume that I haven't heard of complaints about BM because the organizers and most of the participants make an effort to keep things inside Burning Man and also clean up perfectly when their done. But I also don't know, because I've never been which is why I'm curious.

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Burning Man and Shamandome/Shamanistas
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2013, 04:29:31 pm »
Oh, we've had it out with arrogant, pretendian, appropriating Burners before: