Based on David Abram’s essay, the shamans’ functions and activities include protecting the relation of the lands and people, ensuring equilibrium between the gods and humans, and creating polity. The shamans are the agents of divine intervention but are not the source of these powers. They are to be observed but not to become the cause of their existence. These powers are important for human health because they create favourable conditions for survival and well-being. It is a common view that the power of life and death lies in the relationship between humans and gods. This view is supported by the fact that human beings can resist life, even when it is not desired.
In contemporary US society, there should be people that perform the responsibilities like those of the shamans to promote health, social stability, self-respect, peace, happiness and stability. If such people exist, problems such as mental issues, environmental degradation and racial prejudice can be solved. As Abram asserts, shamans should not be considered the primary source of our powers, for they are only part of a complex network of powers that includes people. Their powers do not always manifest themselves, so it becomes difficult to consider them as sources. But they play an important role in promoting human well-being, as Abram quotes;
â€œIt is not by sending his awareness out beyond the natural world that shamans make contact with the purveyors of life and health, but by his awareness outward into the depths of a landscape, both sensuous and psychological.â€ (Armstrong&Botzler 150).
In conclusion, David Abram agrees that shamans are good for the well-being of human society. Because of this, they should exist in our society since their power and authority create a condition for social well having. A lot of shaman’s power is needed to change human lives. Having people in society that can perform the same responsibilities as the shamans helps achieve such changes. Since shamans are a significant part of establishing human societies, people should know how to perform their duties and responsibilities. Those responsible for creating such a state of affairs would be good examples of shamans. Works Cited
Armstrong, Susan Jean, and Richard George Botzler. “Environmental ethics: Divergence and convergence.” (1993).
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