Omar W. Rosales, J.D., Author of the Month for July 2009
Welcome to the Revolution: The Resurgence of Elemental Shamanism in the 21st Century (cont.)
By Omar W. Rosales, J.D.
A series of events would necessitate the first surgery and maiming of the Maximon. For when created, the statue was infused with the trickster spirit in nature and in the brothers' hearts, this was the secret. And what's funny for the trickster, is not always funny for the recipient of the trick. After the Maximon was caught shape-shifting and visiting the beds of the villager's wives, the Telinel hatched a plan. Upon getting the statue drunk with alcohol and prayer, the village elders performed a ceremony and, more importantly, an amputation. This is why the modern statue has no feet, is restrained by rope, and is missing a finger. Thus the effigy would never again be mistaken for a human male. And now the statue is forever restrained, to carry out the will of the shamans.
The brotherhoods, or Cofradias, manage the upkeep of the statue. With over 10 Cofradias in Santiago Atitlan, the statue is moved from family center to family center every year, to maintain a tenuous balance of power between rival cofradias and families. Whomever has control of the statue, has access to the thousands of dollars given in tribute every year to the Maximon. Every shamanic ceremony around Lake Atitlan must be first be approved by the Telinel. Without the blessing of the Maximon, and the approval of the Telinel, the Maya shamanic rituals are destined to fail. This is the belief of the local populace, a strong enough belief that can sometimes distort the supernatural nature of Spellcasting.
The power to perform magicks rests with the practitioner - the shaman. And the tool the shaman uses to break linear time and apply quantum physics is the shaman's own mind and consciousness. The power rests with an individual's beliefs, and the additional electrical and quantum energy generated by the human brain and spinal cord. Still, the Maximon is worshipped and revered all over Central America. So, what other secrets do the Tz'utujil Maya of Santiago Atitlan know?
Ghosts in the Air Realm: Footpaths to Himalayan Glory
Another breed of shamanic practitioners not typically discussed are the Vajrayana Buddhist Masters of Tibet and Bhutan. Bon Shamanism predated Buddhism in these mountainous and isolated regions of India, Bhutan, and Tibet.
Prayer Flags in Bhutan
River in Bhutan
The introduction of Buddhism supplanted the beliefs and acceptance of Bon. Yet the most evolved and mystical type of Buddhism, known as Vajrayana or Diamond Vehicle Buddhism, returned to the regional Bon roots. Typified by the recognition of Adepts with supernatural powers such as loco tempestas, bilocation, and levitation, the Vajrayana Masters utilize esoteric texts, long periods of chanting and meditation, and secret rituals to refine their concepts of consciousness.
The hallmark of a Vajrayana Buddhist Master is the ability to achieve transcendence, break the cycle of Karma, and become a Bodhisattva, or saint, in one lifetime. Legends tell that the most powerful Buddhist magicians of our age were also Vajrayana adepts: Padmasambhava, also known as Guru Rinpoche, who brought Buddhism to Bhutan from Swat. Milarepa, who destroyed an entire village with magick, yet after his remorse and upon his realization, changed his life and became a Buddhist teacher and healer. Pema Lingpa, a magician from Bhutan who lept into a deep river gorge, and emerged from the water holding lighted lamps and sacred Buddhist treasures called tertons, is another example of these healer-magicians.
Yet the most startling contradiction along a Vajrayana Buddhist Master's pathway is the ultimate realization, the dissolution of self and ego. That individual souls do not exist. That power comes from the universe. And that the Clear Light of the Buddha-mind forms a conscious connection with the thoughts and feelings of all living beings. This is the Final Realization, the ultimate insight for a Vajrayana Buddhist Master, that we are one. The final answer, that there is no self, but the All. 
Don't ignore the Hydra
The major concepts of modern theoretical physics are refined every two decades. Old science is cut down, and gives way to a new head or school of thought. Thirty years ago, concepts such as string-theory, time-travel, and instantaneous movement between points of space hundreds-of-thousands of light years apart would have been science fiction. But new research into the folding of space-time, movement through a circular universe, and D-branes, has made theoretical science plausible.  But haven't shamans been doing this research for millennia?
When we talk about divination and clairvoyance, isn't a shaman's Altered State of Consciousness allowing his mind to break the linear time of a three-dimensional plus-time (3D+T) universe? When we examine the fabric and weavings of the Tz'utujil Maya of Santiago Atitlan, and determine that they perceive the universe as a geometric pattern, that can be folded to an infinitely small point suited for instantaneous journeys between solar systems, aren't we describing worm-holes and faster-than-light travel? When a Buddhist master says the thoughts of all sentient beings are connected by Buddha-mind, aren't we describing String Theory and the convocation of D-branes, black p-branes and Neveu-Schwarz 5-branes? The shamanic world is the world of quantum physics. Yet, are we adapting shamanism and indigenous beliefs to explain science? Or is science evolving to the point where it can explain and quantify indigenous shamanic beliefs? With science, the improbable becomes possible. So, what new breakthroughs will we see in the 21st Century? And how will shamans continue to teach us?
The Elemental Shamans
These are the Elemental Shamans. These healers give us the modern and true answers to fictionalized accounts provided by wayward authors. By meticulous research, we determine that there is no need for cultural misappropriation or theft of native indigenous insight. There is no necessity to make up accounts. To learn, all we must do is ask. To discover, we must explore. But the essence will always come back to fieldwork.
Dzong or Monastery Fortress in Bhutan
His Holiness the Dali Lama and author
There is no substitute for spending time in the jungle. There is no facsimile to visiting Buddhist temples and monasteries in the Himalaya. And there is no faux journey that will substitute for the insight and trans-dimensional knowledge (predicted by String theory) that is gained by the consumption of the Vine of the Souls, Ayahuasca, as distilled by the hands of Peruvian shamans. 
If we desire arcane knowledge, ask. If we want to learn about native traditions, journey. Travel to these indigenous healers and ask questions. Ultimately, the journey for shamanic knowledge is the quest to understand culture, explore the quantum potential of the human body, and demystify the consciousness of the human machine.
Evolution is within us, the power is within us, to change our world. Its in the palm of our hands. Its found in the beauty of our speech and thought. The evolution of humanity is determined by the neuroplasticity of our brains, perhaps even already pre-encoded in our DNA.  But shamans have already been teaching us, these profound and holy truths, for thousands and thousands of years.
Buddhist Stupa in India