Encyclopedia of Latin American Religions

2019 Edition
| Editors: Henri Gooren

Urban Shamanism

  • Marcelo S. MercanteEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-27078-4_89

Definition or Key Information

Urban shamanism is a recent spiritual practice in Latin America. There are two different, although complementary and many times overlapping, groups of practitioners: (1) indigenous shamans performing traditional ceremonies for nonnative participants and (2) nonindigenous spiritual leaders or groups performing native-inspired ceremonies.

A growing number of indigenous shamans belonging to many different ethnic groups are traveling from their communities to perform traditional ceremonies for very heterogenic assemblies. Those ceremonies, however, are focused on healing and nonnative topics like “self-knowledge.” Thus, themes like “warfare” and “hunting,” so dear to traditional shamanism, had been removed from those rituals. This phenomenon has been enhanced in the same proportion as indigenous people have been moving to live in urban centers.

According to Langdon and Rose (2012) there is a network of “groups and individuals through the circulation of...


Neoshamanism Tradition New Age 
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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Public Health Graduate ProgramUniversidade do Vale do Rio dos SinosSão LeopoldoBrazil
  2. 2.Unisinos, Escola de SaúdeSão PauloBrazil