“A shaman is someone who has been to the end, it’s someone who knows how the world really works, and knowing how the world really works means to have risen outside, above, beyond the dimensions of ordinary space, time, and casuistry,
and actually seen the wiring under the board, stepped outside the confines of learned culture and learned and embedded language, into the domain of what Wittgenstein called “the unspeakable”, the transcendental presence of the other,
which can be absanctioned, in various ways, to yield systems of knowledge which can be brought back into ordinary social space for the good of the community.”
— Terence Mckenna
I’ve always liked this quote from Mckenna, but felt it was missing a key ingredient. The “good of the community” is not always what the community thinks is good.
The last thing any culture truly desires is the prophetic voice of revelation. People in New Age circles think the Shaman is “White Light” Jesus, but forgot the Book of Revelations, “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (Matthew 10:34)
The real Magician and Shaman is ALWAYS dangerous vis a vis the ontological and ethical status quo of the “community” if that community is anything less than fully aligned with the mystery of the unspeakable transcendental presence of the other.