April 1—5 The Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness and the Association for Transpersonal Psychology jointly present a conference on Bridging Nature and Human Nature at the Edgefield Resort in Portland, Oregon. The conference is intended to create an “interdisciplinary coalition to help reassess science and culture and the interface between technology and nature” — that is, to call for a more systemic, process-oriented, intimate, and sensual understanding of the universe in which we live. There will be presentations by Marlene Dobkin de Ríos, Stanley Krippner, David Lukoff, Ralph Metzner, and many others. Two panels are of particular interest to students of shamanism — Sacred Brews: Ayahuasca Controversies and a Clash of Cultures, Indigenous and Postmodern, chaired by Evgenia Fotiou; and Bateson, Postmodernism and Shamanism, chaired by Constantine Hriskos and Sarah Williams. The complete schedule is here.
|Luis Eduardo Luna|
April 7—11 The Association pour la Recherche Transdisciplinaire sur les Hallucinations et autres États Modifiés de Conscience presents its second annual Spring Symposium on Hallucinations in Philosophy and Cognitive Science in Paris, France. While the main focus of the conference is the phenomenon of hallucination, this year invited experts will speak on a wide range of related topics — REM sleep, out of body experiences, meditation, cognitive and affective mechanisms of altered states of consciousness, the phenomenology of conscious states, the ontology of hallucinations, psychoactive plants, traditional rituals, and shamanism. Among the speakers will be ayahuasca experts Luis Eduardo Luna and Benny Shanon, as well as neurologists, neuroscientists, neuropsychopharmacologists, and artists. A preliminary program is here.
June 7—10 The Takiwasi Centre holds the first International Conference on Traditional Medicines, Interculturality and Mental Health in Tarapoto, Peru. This conference brings together practitioners of traditional medicine, indigenous representatives, participants in projects that integrate traditional medicine with conventional medicine, academics, government representatives, and international organizations, in order to demonstrate and promote the contribution of traditional medicine in providing solutions to contemporary problems in mental health. A list of proposed presentations is here.
June 18—21 The Society for Shamanic Practitioners holds its Fifth Annual Conference on Shamanism and Shamanic Practice at Menla Mountain, Catskills, New York. Although the program has not yet been set, the conference will feature Mandaza Augustine Kandemwa, an nganga or Bantu medicine man in the Shona and Ndebele traditions of Zimbabwe. Also featured will be healing practitioners Pamela Albee, Jane Burns, Leontine Hartzell, Sharynne MacLeod NicMhacha, Mark Perkins, Linda Secord, and others. A continuous drumming prayer ceremony will take place twenty-four hours a day during the conference. The Society of Shamanic Practitioners was formed to support the re-emergence of shamanism into modern western culture, and to document the ways in which shamanism is changing and being used in the twenty-first century world.
June 26—30 The International Association for the Study of Dreams presents its Twenty-Sixth Annual Conference at Wyndham O’Hare Hotel in Rosemont, Illinois, with the theme Earth Dreaming: Twenty-five Years of Carrying the Dream Forward. Keynote speeches will be given by psychologist Stanley Krippner, Everyone Who Dreams Partakes of Shamanism, and cognitive anthropologist Barbara Tedlock, The Shamanic Power and Spirituality of Dreaming. Invited presenter Robert Moss will speak on The Secret History of Dreaming. There will be five days of seminars, workshops, papers and events focusing on clinical, theoretical, research, cross-cultural, artistic, and spiritual approaches to understanding dreams and nightmares from over 150 international presenters.
July 11—18 Soga del Alma hosts the Fifth International Amazonian Shamanism Conference with the theme The Art and the Heart of Healing. Local curanderos will hold evening healing ceremonies, and there will be a special showing of the movie Heaven Earth, along with discussion with the filmmakers Rudolf Amaral and Harald Scherz. The schedule is still being compiled, but expect to see a number of local healers, including huasero Marie Louisa Garcia, as well as psychopharmacologist Dennis McKenna, journalist Peter Gorman, painter Pablo Amaringo, sound healer Richard Grossman, and many others.
July 25—August 5 Eagle’s Wing Centre for Contemporary Shamanism offers The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo, a visionary art workshop to be held in the Alpahuayo Mishana Nature Reserve with famed painter Pablo Amaringo, who will give daily hands-on art workshops. There will be ceremonies in the evening with Shipibo shamans Enrique Lopez and either Benjamín Ochavano or Leoncio Garcia.
September 5—7 The Society for the Study of Shamanism, Healing and Transformation holds its Annual International Conference on the Study of Shamanism and Alternative Modes of Healing at the Santa Sabina Center, San Rafael, California. This year the theme is Shamans of the Twenty-First Century. The schedule is not yet set, but the conference will feature Bantu medicine man Mandaza Augustine Kandemwa, as well as presentations by practitioners and independent scholars of shamanism and alternative healing.
November 29—December 8 Psychoactivity presents its sixth annual conference at the Dhulikhel Mountain Resort, Kathmandu, Nepal, on the theme The Tiger Meets The Jaguar. Nepalese shamans Maile Lama, Parvati Rai, Danashin Tamang, and Dawa Sherpa will meet with anthropologist-turned-shaman Kajuyali Tsamani, head of the Fundación de Investigaciones Chamanistas in Colombia, and with noted scholars Christian Rätsch, Arno Adelaars, and Claudia Mueller-Ebeling to share their life stories, ceremonies, and shamanic knowledge. Psychoactivity was founded in 1997 in Amsterdam to organize conferences on new visionary plant research, shamanism, and altered states of consciousness.