shamanism

noun
sha·​man·​ism | \ ˈshä-mə-ˌni-zəm How to pronounce shamanism (audio) , ˈshā-mə- also shə-ˈmä-\

Definition of shamanism

: a religion practiced by indigenous peoples of far northern Europe and Siberia that is characterized by belief in an unseen world of gods, demons, and ancestral spirits responsive only to the shamans also : any similar religion

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from shamanism

shamanist \ ˈshä-​mə-​nist How to pronounce shamanist (audio) , ˈshā-​mə-​ also  shə-​ˈmä-​ \ noun
shamanistic \ ˌshä-​mə-​ˈni-​stik How to pronounce shamanistic (audio) , ˌshā-​mə-​ \ adjective

Examples of shamanism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Yupik and Chukchi people practiced shamanism, and lived in a time that human history was supposed to have surpassed, without literacy, temperance, science, or gender equality. Bathsheba Demuth, The New Yorker, "When the Soviet Union Freed the Arctic from Capitalist Slavery," 15 Aug. 2019 Hanna Hur’s paintings, drawings and sculptures at Bel Ami bend some of the most rigorous formal traditions in Western art to the service of spirituality inflected with Korean shamanism. Sharon Mizota, latimes.com, "Art as a portal to Korean ancestors? The mesmerizing work of Hanna Hur," 1 July 2019 The Russian avant-garde, Abstract Expressionism, Post-Modern shamanism — Stockholder’s amalgamated installation is a marvel of pure artistic feeling, coaxed from ordinary objects of daily life. Christopher Knight, latimes.com, "MOCA on the rebound? Three strong shows and free entry are welcome signs of change," 12 June 2019 Henrikson ruminates on other purposes the trees might have served, including rites of passage for young adults, shamanism and even astronomy. Anchorage Daily News, "What made the hollowed out ‘fire trees’ of the Tongass? An artist turns investigator to find an answer," 23 June 2018 The elderly man shared his knowledge of shamanism, yoga, kung fu, and peyote, which Castaneda wrote about in several books. Los Angeles Magazine, "A Brief History of L.A.’s Most Notorious Cults," 23 Apr. 2018 As such, technicians at Miraval are versed in shamanism and energetic healing, as well as in more standard practices like massage. Vogue, "Bachelorette Party Ideas for the Bride Who Believes in Magic," 1 Nov. 2017 He and his political strategists drew heavily on Korean history and culture, in addition to mysticism, shamanism, and Christianity, to craft their singular version of Marxism-Leninism. Jean H. Lee, Esquire, "Inside Kim Jong-un's Bloody Scramble to Kill Off His Family," 11 Aug. 2017 This is magic, shamanism, over which language and rational laws do not rule. Leilah Bernstein, Los Angeles Magazine, "This Ballet About Tchaikovsky Reveals the Composer’s Talent and Torment," 23 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'shamanism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of shamanism

1780, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about shamanism

Statistics for shamanism

Last Updated

19 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shamanism

The first known use of shamanism was in 1780

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on shamanism

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about shamanism

Comments on shamanism

What made you want to look up shamanism? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

formidable, illustrious, or eminent

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!