schizoid shamans are bunk

From: Greg Stafford <greg_at_...>
Date: Sat, 18 Nov 2000 14:31:30 -0800

> >Given that RW shamans usually *are* schizophrenic, if not suffering
> >from full Multiple Personality Disorder, that "problem" is entirely
> >to the role-playing good. A perfectly sane shaman with a happy
> >family life and many friends isn't doing his job.

Please note on the official record that Greg Stafford absolutely rejects the above notion as being a "shamanic norm" for Glorantha. It is not true on earth, nor in Glorantha.

Real world shamans are not schizophrenic or MPD. This is a false stereotype that was made up in by Victorian anthropologists who thought that 19th century Christianity was normal religion.

Shamans in shamanic cultures are normally respected for their healing powers, visionary insights, and supernatural powers. Sure, some wear womens' clothing, eat strange fungi, or engage in midnight battles with spirits; but it's not considered sick, weird or crazy within the context of those cultures. I am not saying that there were never any that were schizo, but finding a few examples is not sufficient reason to characterize a world wide practice any more than it would be to condemn all Christianity for some lunatics that worship Jesus while eating strange fungi, wearing women's clothing and wrestling with spirits.

Do a little research before falling for such limited stereotypes. Please see any issue of shaman's drum magazine for articles about actual shamans and their mental states. Read some books that are actually about the practices instead of second and third sources rehashing old error and misconceptions.

Issaries, Inc. is preparing some materials to help explain the animist way for Hero Wars.

Greg Stafford
Issaries, Inc. 900 Murmansk St., Suite 5; Oakland, CA 94607 Phone: (510) 452 1648 Fax: (510) 302 0385 Publisher of Hero Wars, Roleplaying in Glorantha See our site at: <>

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