for an interesting idea on how Erickson did things.
I have been scrolling through this site and have found several references that Erickson himself was a very scientific man who believed that everything could be explained. He, I assume, would have chuckled at the idea of being a shaman.
However, I am right now very busy comparing Erickson's biography with the biographies of shamans, and am amazed to find the parallels. Shamans often are iniatated by an awful illness at young age that nearly kills them, during which they usually cannot communicate with the outside world. Erickson had polio when he was 17 and could only watch things! After overcoming this illness the novice shaman then often has to set out into the wilderness by himself to learn, find spirits etc... Now I doubt that Erickson found any "spirits" but he did after overcoming polio, go on this canoe trip with $2.50 in his pocket to come back as a re-strengthened, energetic man. The point is that in a different society Erickson might have been regarded as a seer, choden one, whatever. Hypnotherapy also gets as close to shamanic rituals of trance as no other area of psychotherapy (correct me if I am wrong). My question once again to anyone reading this:
Was Erickson a shaman without knowing it - A 20th century, American version of one?
I would be ever so happy about your thoughts and ideas on this topic.
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