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Cave Paintings and the Human Spirit: The Origin of Creativity and Belief

The magnificent prehistoric art discovered in caves throughout France and Spain raises many questions about early human culture. What do these superbly rendered paintings of horses, bison, and enigmatic human figures and symbols mean? How can we explain the sudden flourishing of artistic creativity at such a high level? And in what ways does this artwork reflect the underlying belief system, worldview, and life of the people who created it?

In this fascinating discussion of ancient art and religion, Dr. David S. Whitley—one of the world’s leading experts on cave paintings—guides the reader in an exploration of these intriguing questions, while sharing his firsthand experiences in visiting these exquisite, breathtaking sites.

To grasp what drove these ancient artists to create these masterpieces, and to understand the origin of myth and religion, as Whitley explains, is to appreciate what makes us human. Moreover, he broadens our understanding of the genesis of creativity and myth by proposing a radically new and original theory that weds two seemingly warring camps from separate disciplines.

On the one hand, archaeologists specializing in prehistoric cave paintings have argued that the visionary rituals of shamans led to the creation of this expressive art. They consider shamanism to be the earliest known form of religion. By contrast, evolutionary psychologists view the emergence of religious beliefs as a normal expression of the human mind. In their eyes, the wild and ecstatic trances of shamans were a form of aberrant behavior. Far from being typical representatives of ancient religion, shamans were exceptions to the normal rule of early religion.

Whitley resolves the controversy by interweaving the archaeological evidence with the latest findings of cutting-edge neuroscience. He thereby rewrites our understanding of shamanism and its connection with artistic creativity, myth, and religion.

Combining a colorful narrative describing Whitley’s personal explorations at key archaeological sites with robust scientific research, Cave Paintings and the Human Spirit makes for engrossing reading. It provides a profound and poignant perspective on what it means to be human.

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The Mind in the Cave: Consciousness and the Origins of Art

The breathtakingly beautiful art created deep inside the caves of western Europe has the power to dazzle even the most jaded observers.

Emerging from the narrow underground passages into the chambers of caves such as Lascaux, Chauvet, and Altamira, visitors are confronted with symbols, patterns, and depictions of bison, woolly mammoths, ibexes, and other animals.

Since its discovery, cave art has provoked great curiosity about why it appeared when and where it did, how it was made, and what it meant to the communities that created it. David Lewis-Williams proposes that the explanation for this lies in the evolution of the human mind. Cro-Magnons, unlike the Neanderthals, possessed a more advanced neurological makeup that enabled them to experience shamanistic trances and vivid mental imagery. It became important for people to “fix,” or paint, these images on cave walls, which they perceived as the membrane between their world and the spirit world from which the visions came. Over time, new social distinctions developed as individuals exploited their hallucinations for personal advancement, and the first truly modern society emerged.

Illuminating glimpses into the ancient mind are skillfully interwoven here with the still-evolving story of modern-day cave discoveries and research. The Mind in the Cave is a superb piece of detective work, casting light on the darkest mysteries of our earliest ancestors while strengthening our wonder at their aesthetic achievements. 87 illustrations, 26 in color

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EPONA Pony Tail Comb – Assorted

For horses (and horse keepers) who have always hated combs – This sturdy ultra-wide-tooth comb weaves it’s way gently through mane and tail – separating, detangling, leaving hair healthy and flowing.

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The Story of Iktomi as told by Vince E Pratt – Audio Cassette

Side 1:
Iktomi and Value System
Iktomi, the Duck Hunter
Iktomi (as a little boy & Frost)

Side 2:
The Foolish One
Story of the White Crow
Iktomi Changes His Mind
Iktomi and the Big Rock

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Regenerate/Iktomi

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Speaking in Tongues: Cross-cultural Study of Glossolalia

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Ecstasy, Ritual, and Alternate Reality: Religion in a Pluralistic World

“An important book which deserves the careful attention of serious students of religion.” —Religious Studies Review

Anthropologist and spiritual explorer Felicitas Goodman offers a “unified field theory” of religion as human behavior. She examines ritual, the religious trance, alternate reality, ethics and moral code, and the named category designating religion.

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Shamanism and Spirituality in Therapeutic Practice: An Introduction

This authoritative, accessible book explores ancient and contemporary shamanism, as well as modern therapeutic approaches, in the wider context of human development. The underlying concepts and world-views of indigenous and contemporary shamanism are compared, contrasted and tied in with current developments in psychology, physics and neuro-science. After clarifying altered states of perception, concepts of integrative wholeness of mind, body, soul and spirit and transformative shamanic healing approaches, the book discloses how indigenous traditions can be adjusted for contemporary practice. It offers practitioners a highly effective repertoire of insights, psycho-spiritual approaches and step-by-step therapeutic tools and techniques, illustrated with examples and case studies throughout. This inspirational book is essential reading for psychologists, therapists, counsellors and coaches looking for profound insights and innovative methods of practice that cater for the whole human psyche, reaching beyond contemporary Western mind and body approaches. It will also be an enlightening read for non-professionals interested in the subject.

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Shamanic Journeying

Shamanic journeying is the inner art of traveling to the “invisible worlds” beyond ordinary reality to retrieve information for change in any area of your life — from spirituality and health to work and relationships. In Shamanic Journeying, Sandra Ingerman draws from over 20 years’ experience as a student and teacher of shamanism to share the core insights of this transformative practice. Join her to learn the original role of the shaman in indigenous societies; how to meet and work with your “power animal” and other spirit teachers; and the keys to successful journeying in our modern culture. With fascinating accounts of the powerful results of shamanic journeying and answers to the questions you may face as you begin your practice, Shamanic Journeying includes everything you need to explore the visionary worlds of the shaman. Book jacket.

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Mainroom & Trance Mix (Full Continuous DJ Mix)

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