Artist and Spirit Series: Singing Shaman

by Mark Gilliland

“The Singing Shaman posture is one of only two postures in which a sound is intentionally made throughout the trance. The singing affects people deeply, both emotionally and physically. Often people in workshops speak about the feelings of oneness and wholeness…1”

From my journey notes: Standing in a circle, toning. Listening to the rattle and to our voices weaving in and out. Then – a visual of florescent snakes interweaving in a geometric diamond grid matrix above the horizon. Navaho sky gods are present, circling overhead with the stars, watching protectively over the unfolding scene.

Red rock mesas surround me under cool moonlight. I sense I am a Saguaro cactus, standing tall, white blooms open for pollination. Bats land in my flowers. Around me carved petroglyphs come to life, ancestors and shaman dancing and singing at the fire. I feel vibrating energy flowing through me from Mother Earth to the stars / galaxy above.

EBP journey notes and digital image by Mark Gilliland ©2008-2014. See more visionary work at


Artists & Spirit Series – The Artists & Spirit program is an opportunity to explore, expand, and document our ritual posture experience with sketching, painting, sculpting and other visual art mediums. 

Art sits at the center of our work at the Cuyamungue Institute. It is through the artwork of the ancients that Ritual Postures have been preserved and communicated through the centuries. Ritual Postures activate our creative center, and stir the dialogue with the Soul. Taking the the imagery encountered during our spirit journey experiences with the Cuyamungue Method as inspiration for artistic expression is a rewarding exercise on many levels. Artists are finding new layers of meaning in their experiences, as you will hear in their reports. You are invited to submit your art and your story.