Re: virus: Re: shaman

Wade T.Smith (
Thu, 21 Aug 97 07:42:56 -0400

>Now let's look at the Shaman. He has something. He won't tell you what
>it is, but everyone seems to think it's important.

Well, not everyone. Not the outsider, raised in a different culture.

> You can't by it from
>him for $22. He won't even sell it to you for $100. You offer him $1000,
>$10,000 and he just laughs in your face. No, it's worth *more* than all
>that. But you can have it if you want it. It'll take a while, though.
>You might have to study for ten years, but if you *really* want it...

And what will I end up with? I'll be a shaman. What will I have done of
worth for any generation to come, or for a stranger, or another culture?

>(This is the point, Wade, where the scientificly trained white
>anthropologist throws up his hands and, declaring it all a sham, goes back
>home to his safe, simple suburban home.)

Actually, once people get by the idea that only this immersion is a valid
method of studying them, they are free to actually start analyzing them
objectively and disinterestedly. (And yes, I know the whole cycle is
required....) This leads to some important medical findings, once you
take the 'magic' out of the herb. It's all heresy, of course, to the

I reiterate- the shaman is only a shaman within his own culture. Taken
outside, he is a sham. Science, and the scientist, do not have a culture
(in the same sense- I don't want a semantic squabble about 'culture')
which they can step outside of and perish.

Now- to you, (I think) this validates the shaman. To me, this relegates
him and his methods to curiosity.

Not that I ain't curious.

But I (personally) ain't got ten years, either.

Wade T. Smith | "There ain't nothin' you | shouldn't do to a god." |
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