Individuation

Individuation – Under the influence of modernism, the stress on individual, “inner” experience and reality has been significant both in studies of shamanic/altered states of consciousness (including trance and possession) and in neo-shamanic cosmology and performance. Early studies that presented shamans as psychologically ill or damaged people, and more recent ones interested in brain chemistry, exemplify scholarly attempts to situate shamanism within psychology. Neo-shamanism is influenced by Carl Jung’s privileging of “individuation” as a therapeutic goal, and therefore typically presents journeying as self-exploration. Paul Johnson’s “case study in New Age Ritual Appropriation” also identifies the influence of Sigmund Freud in interpretations of “soul loss” as equivalent to repression and trauma.

SOURCE:

Historical Dictionary of Shamanism by Graham Harvey and Robert J. Wallis 2007

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