Carpathian Shaman – Ukraine Mofarka, Molfar; Polish Szeptuchami & Whisperer; Belarus Whisperers and Hungarian Lidercz, Táltos

By Phoenix of Elder Mountain (eldermountaindreaming@gmail.com)   I am a Molfarka, Szeptucha (pronounced: Shep-too-hah) or sometimes Szeptunka, a Wind Whisperer and Shaman, so it gives me great pleasure to share and gather other wonderful information  of the traditional Whispering and Shamanic Folk Healing rites from various sources and my own experiences as a Dreamer (shaman). Along with my extensive gifts, my ancestral lineages are from my families region of southeastern Poland at the Ukraine border. Most people learn shamanistic cultural ways from researchers, authors and conference circuit people who are wonderful writers and speakers but not life and soulborn initiated shamans.

I don’t really teach people to be shamans, that is impossible for real shamans, I don’t sing shaman songs because there are none, we are speaking of the shaman, not the voice of information of the one who holds a drum in their hand or the ceremonial person who gives their personal wisdom, or the sweat lodge person, or pagan ceremony leader…  we are speaking of one who masters silence and has lifelong sicknesses, soul sickness and the wrath of the souls shattered apart in the tradition, to reconfigure death and put the self back together. This is to overcome in order to leave the body naturally (without shamanic plant/drug) in order to reclaimed their own shattered life over lifetimes to return their medicines from the past. And then help others and their sicknesses that effects their mind, emotional body or physical body.

ukraine bird

Shamans are very different than Medicine people (shaman practitioners) as shamans were rare on the planet a million years ago and they are rare still rare today The root all shamans is of course a healer but the realms of that reality, goes way beyond normal, even compared to the shamans who are whisperers. My grandmothers were of the ancient shamanic lineage but they too suffered from loss of original medicines. As by birth I am closer to the dreamers, which are the black shamans of Siberia and we all have ancestors who were shamans in our lineage way back, but that doesn’t mean the goal should be shaman, it means the goal should be healing the self if one wishes to attain the origin of self.

Once the Black Madonna was “regulated” by christian religions, the Slavic and Balkan people fell asleep and forgot she was a black shaman, because religion rolled her into the ‘mother goddess’ role, when her roots and origins had nothing to do with children in general, the imprint on our soul was branded and it hurt. To undo such branding of our soul, that hurts just as much to reclaim and remember who we are. The same process of corruption had occurred with Baba Jaga, the grandmother lineage of the winter goddess, who was a much more archaic shaman figure but now imprisoned in the fairy-tales of life. For those who wish to enter deeper into baba jaga here is an article you may wish to read: https://eldermountaindreaming.com/2015/08/23/baba-yaga-the-black-shaman/

Carpathian Shamanism, although given different names explained here, is a long ancestral lineage where Slovak, Poland and Ukraine meet. The root of the Whisperer as a shaman (not witch). Witch and Shaman really only have a few things in common but are very different, the first difference is paganism, the root of witches if a Dionysus cult foundation and that arrived late on the time-line (500 bce) compared to shamans in the non-pagan cultures such as shamans and dreamers. There maybe some similarities in objects or tools, but at the root its not the same. Witch was a derogatory term given to women, all women (shamans, witches, herbalists, midwives, seers, etc) by Christian religious men all over the world.

Whisper by Siarhiej Leskiec.jpg
“Whisper” by Siarhiej Leskiec

Mol’farka (and Molfars) are similar to Whisperer which is a folk healer (medicine-healer) and both are still from the past or modern times, all shamans are healers regardless of ancient and modern corruptions of descriptions.  Since i have a blending of both (Poland-Ukraine border ancestors), one which switched borders back and forth over the eras, my ancestral heritage is shaman, not witch, and is why whisperers and molfars are connected to this lineage but most are not the depth of it because the era before the sixties did not support the awakenings. They are not exactly the same, but the root is connected through shamanism.

Mol’farka (Molfar) can whisper for the sick all the way to the more shamanic ends of whispering in ceremonial rights of what I can do, called Wind Whisperer, I can slay demons, bind them and send them back to the underworld with consciousness in waking or night dreaming. The traditions of shamans in the Slavic traditions have come from an ancient past of the Boyko (Бойко) which is a Polish and Ukrainian ethnographic group located in the Carpathian Mountains of Ukraine and Poland who have hidden in small villages women and men who still practice their folk traditions of shamanism. Although most whisperers, whats left of shamanism is closer to the Eastern Poles.

They inhabit the central and the western half of the Carpathians in Ukraine across such regions as the southern Lviv Oblast (Skole, Turka, Drohobych, Sambir and Stary Sambir raions), western Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast (Dolyna and Rozhniativ) and parts of the northeastern Zakarpattia oblast (Mizhhiria), as well as the adjacent areas of southeast Poland and northeast Slovakia.

Parts of Southern Poland at the Ukraine border at one time were Ukrainian lands, and when the lands were divided, some far southern groups of Polish people have Ukrainian ancestral lineages like myself. The term “Ukrainian” replaced the term “Ruthenian” in Eastern Ukraine and became more common among Western Ruthenians/Ukrainians, including Boykos, as well. The name, “Boyko” is thought by some to originate in a pattern of speech, specifically the uses of the affirmative exclamation “bo-ye!”, meaning the only or because it is so.

On the grounds forming Boyko, there are Boykos with Lemkos and Hutsuls in an area that was known as White Croatia and with their dialect, language, folk costumes are almost equal with Dinaric Croatian and it is to be considered as Croatian ethnic group.

Babka Fiadora and the “female cross.”.jpg
Belarusian Babka Fiadora and the “female cross.”

To the south or southwest live the Lemkos and to east or southeast live the Hutsuls, the two other highlander ethnic and more indigenous Ukraine people.  In regards to both the corruption of ancient cultures from the kingdoms of religious military and pagan traditions, who like the religious took on a more male leadership, despite their destruction it had on the earlier pre-12th century indigenous people. The Molfarka (women) and Molfar (men) (мольфа́р) still exists of course but as I stated, all shamans are rare even in larger populated areas.

A Molfar is a lighter version of shaman, more like a medicine woman or medicine man, which are just called Carpathian Folk Healer. Most Slavs and Balkans call their gifted shamans Folk Healers and the terms can really be thought of as a lesser shaman, even the ones who are called Witch healers. In the more indigenous traditions of the Hutsul cultures or Rusyns etc., they still call themselves folk healers even if they have shaman tendencies. When religions arrived, the shaman name was eventually called witches or folk healer, because most healer shamans were women. That is why the traditions were lost and only left in the smaller Slav and Balkan indigenous villages. 

Gifted healing abilities which tend to focus more on faith, combined with nature are much more powerful. This is what the whisperers and folk healers are. When you add personal healing and abilities of seership and herbalist gifts, and the inseparable relations with nature, this created a more supernatural soul healing effects. Shamanic ways still survive in Balkan and Slavic hearts or at least the ones who have the gifts themselves undeveloped. The faith healers of Poland, Ukraine, Slovakia etc. tended to mix both religion and natural holistic gifts together which made their healing for emotional body and mental body issues.

The few people who are born to enter a more advanced path of the shamans destiny, on top of the supernatural healing abilities, also added dreaming abilities to reconnect to the Slavic and Balkan earlier pre-religious shamanic tradition. As the pagans had risen to power which was the same time the religious men were rising to power, both excluded women, which excluded the origin of goddess cultures, which is the core of shamanism. Then with only male shamans, the whole shamanic traditions were corrupted under this influence.

Now that 2012 has come, the patriarchal pagan and religion cultures are on the down turn and the rising origin shamanic (but non drug or plant shamanism), can rise again. The opportunity to explore more self healing to reclaim and step into origin pre-religious traditions and pre-shaman plant traditions. Some of us like myself are doing it already and have 40 years of practice and purity and help those who wish to do shamanism through sobriety. If the new kids on earth find themselves dairy and lactose and wheat intolerant, so too will the true shamans returning be allergic to shamanic plants and shamanic drugs. That is an absolute because their ancient soul will reject them.

People who are of the Slavic and Carpathian and have “less religious influence” will be able to allow the more ancestral (prehistory) traditions and even those who had to move around the world and leave their country who are Slavic and Balkan, will find interest in such ancient traditions again and explore them like I did as I was entering adulthood.  Because I was born a natural shaman, I, like all real shamans must undo horrific soul sickness with is an ancestral rite, in order to fulfill their destiny.

We don’t really understand he depth of our nature until after our forties but we can try to survive what happens to us as real shamans. When our shift really begins to open the second half of our life, then initiations of the shamanic realities can occur, but one must be free of any illusion causing substance, like alcohol, pot, shamanic plants etc.

This is when most people have to integrate the previous twenty years and bring their life into a much deeper respect for their spiritual path and the deeper understanding of the nature of our ancestral lineages and nature herself. Mother earth and even our souls do not reveal much to us in our twenties and thirties.

There are different names according to the respective cultures, such as in Poland the women shamans are sometimes called witches and also called Szeptuchami, the Polish & Belarus Folk Healers are called Whisperers (which some have undertones of shamanic gifts as well). Like their Ukraine Molfarka, Molfar neighbors, more Polish women are beginning to return to the roots of their ancient practices of healing that existed before the spread modern religion just as the men are returning to Paganism.

A commonality within all of these cultures is that the origin shamanic root base of all these cultures contain whispering. Many of the older women and men still have a devout faith in their Catholic or Christian faith healing traditions, but newer generations like myself do not and this allowed me to explore further without judgment or taboos of shamanism. I knew as a little girl that the religion tradition was not for me, even though

I was very spiritual and that my father had out of body experiences as well as myself – which made me respect all religious, pagans, native americans, and shamanic and goddess cultures equally, not in knowledge but in practices. The more open I was to all traditions of earth, the more I saw at the root of shamanism within them, lost but small gems which were hard to see until I became much more conscious and had much more dedicated awareness, they were all the same at the core.

shaman effigy
40,000 year old shaman woman’s bear effigy which I could be related with the our past evolution of the giants of earth like the Sasquatch. 

The rarer Molfar and Szeptuchami are exorcists as well, but again the church took over this tradition and so not many have performed them because people will just go to a priest instead because of the lack of education. A whisperer works with sicknesses of the soul that effect the physical body, and things that effect the physical body are generally the last of the illness to appear. If one has a karmic issue, then the physical body might have isolated issues of sickness of the body without the mental or emotional issues. But even within that, the past life soul issues is basically what has caused the current reincarnations physical issues and this of course is called Karma.  The emotional body and the blocks of the mental body cannot be separated and I teach my students that to touch this in another, they must be willing to touch it within themselves and open it up to be a powerful healer, regardless of whether they are fated to be a shaman or a healer.

The depth and mystery of ancient healing in my eyes is a seed within the self that can be nurtured and walked with as a living (healing) art, and why herbalists, ceremonial shamans must be completely  dedicated to the devotion of their own path and also make small sacrifices. A shaman must make major sacrifices and doesn’t have a choice. Many wish to be my friend, but too many things will surface if I accept ordinary friendships as a shaman and I can only enter peoples spaces who need healing because of that. So, that is just one of the many sacrifices shamans must make and that is true of Balkan and Slavic shamans.

The Slavic Shaman like the Native American or Aboriginal Indigenous shamans (those whose souls are fated to be shamans) are able to step into and enter the energy of both the earth along with the magical living soul of all humans who wishes to become well. We can pass through the veils and enter the natural forces from the inner spaces in both time (our mundane life) along side the no-time (dreaming or dreamtime), if one is advanced beyond the mental body. A Whisperer who is also is a dreamer, can become one with the natural or nature’s forces and have a real relationship with the consciousness of nature herself if they can pass the life tests and purify karma of their dark past lives. Then a Whisperer or Mol’farka can enter the shamans realms.

Most people are aware of Kupala, or Ivana Kupala, the summer solstice rites. But before paganism, the sacred flower was an initiation rite during this solstice season and it was for women only, not maidens, but women and those mysteries and secrets I carry for my female apprentices.  There are many folk legends of weather shamans and magic in shamanism of the Slavic and Balkan traditions, but I do not separate folk lore from shamanism or animism in many traditional Slavic folk magic stories because at the core, most of them are real and true.

I underwent the summer solstice traditions of the Slavic Vesta (the Sacred Flower of Immortality) initiations and that has nothing to do with men or marriage. Ancestral lore and legend at the core, if you cast out all the other pagan, or religious parts that are not needed which is about 95%. I have found in the supernatural world pre-cultural 4th century a shamanic reality and because as a dream walker I can access the past, I have seen and experienced the pre-patriarchal reality of our shamanic and dream culture past. 

she who whispersMen and women who are powerful healers, are fated by birth and they may not even know or understand this until their 30s or even 40s when they have some life skills and experiences already. Through many previous lives, soul accumulations of purified karma, a life of purity, and undergoing fated initiations adds to the Ukrainian Mol’farka (and those around the world like them) because for thousand of years as human beings, we have been able to enter the non-physical aspects of diseases or spaces in what is called dreams.

Viking, Medieval and Archaic Pagan magicians attributed these qualities to the gods, but in more archaic and advanced shamanic forms, some Szeptuchami and Molfarka possess the same qualities as their shaman counterparts, who connect to the natural power of nature, and their own more powerful higher souls. Humans don’t seem to understand that waking up spiritually gives us a view into our higher and multiple animism souls. All paganism and religion did was create a middle man between the god and goddess, removing it from our inner god and inner goddess called the higher self, the divine self. This too is part of shamanism.

Shamanism is completely opposite of traditional 12th -15th century magick which is based on controlling the elements or to use spells to control and manifest. Shamanism is the opposite which is about letting go of all control and power and let nature guide and teach. In Slavic shamanism, those who misuse spiritual power find sooner or later that ego, pride, power or being popular or famous in spirituality, has no real place in real mysticism or shamanism.

As an example, I was at a native american gathering in the Pacific Northwest for a peace ceremony, with some very powerful native elders who hosted many nations of tribes. I never really go to any of these things anymore, sine I turned 40 but something strong within me called me to go. I realized what it was, when I arrived, and saw a young Norse man about 35 years old, who worked with the Viking pagan tradition and had been invited to be in the ceremonial with the elders. I was just a visitor to this event and I had walked up to the young man and his girlfriend and said that the Native Americans do not treat their “sacred fires” like the Balkan or Slavic people do and shared with him how to respect their fire since he didn’t know. He was doing an energy healing on his girlfriend and throwing the residue into the fire an hour before the ceremony started.

As an elder, I was very shocked by his disrespect to my helpful information and his girlfriend became very fearful at those moments as she obviously understood that his ego had gotten in the way or that they were not really who they pretended to be. Since in his own country, pagan men rule and not many elder women have power over shamanic ceremony, rare do these older men ever invite grandmother to the power circles to lead the ceremonies. But this was not the case this day and during the ceremony when it was the Viking Pagan man’s turn to do his ritual in front of everyone in the greater circle, he happened to be directly facing me in the outer ring of people.

Since I am not a pagan, but a shaman, mystic and healer, I have never done one spell, nor influenced anything of individuals without their permission, because I carry very high ethics and values, nor do I wish to accrue karma from a whole life of paying karma off, plus I slayed my own ego from many circles of healing and healers I went to and elders I worked with when I was his age and honored them very much. During his 10 minute ceremony, there was a big cracking sound in the fire and it flamed up behind him, the same fire pit I tried to explain to him, and at that precise moment, his sacred bag around his hip fell to the ground. Then about a minute later his sacred Nordic Viking symbol necklace, flew off his body and landed about ten feet away.

I then saw the fear in his face, he was trying to stay focused but could not, he looked down (as he had his hands up praying to his gods with his eyes closed) and as he looked forward by the disturbances, he caught my eyes looking at him as he began to look away from the sky in his prayers. I put my hand in the prayer position and bowed and we locked eyes, without any facial expression nor intent except knowing that the youth are not powerful, they are victorious (over their own personal shadow if they work that instead of popularity and ego, which this young man worked from).

kokoshnik

The intensity of really pure healers and really powerful shamans are sometimes ostracized in many pagan and socio-religious or socio-spiritual societies still, this happens to them most of their life, but this is for a good reason. Those who are dedicated to such practices will always endure because they are tested over and over again by fate and the shamans, molfarka, whisperers are given much more pain and severe consequences for their actions, much more than other healers or spiritual people.

True ancient paths are rarely attainable to their full extent without severe suffering, and the most difficult are very hard to attain, for a whole life must be dedicated to it. For the true shamans and folk healers, fate is absolutely necessary for advancement in mysticism and spiritual growth and the burning of karma. Who would chose such depth of pain for such a profession willingly? No one but the fated.

Contemporary shamans, plant shamans and most shaman practitioners are trained in schools, or by book writers or online including plant (drug) shamans, and they tend not to encounter those of us who are initiated by fire, rain, thunderstorms, or demons, demonic tests etc and therefor do not respond to the levels of responsibilities in an everyday way of life that whisperer and real shamans do. Believe me when I say, that is a blessing that they do not to suffer such horrific wrathful dismemberment and shadows sides of mysticism and the dark decades of the souls purification of shamans. Power that is grounded, disciplined, 100% sober and free from ego and a life of total dedication requires decades and lifetimes of purification. This shows the magical sides of Slavic shamanism at its best when taken seriously and the path is a do… or die.

The Belarus Whisperers

babka ilina

Babka Yanina,
Belarus Whisperer (pictured above): “My husband was seriously ill for a very long time; nothing helped him. The doctors said that they could not do anything for him. I began to whisper in the water and gave him this water to drink – and then he got better. After this people from the neighboring villages and towns came to me and asked me to whisper in the water. Now I am very old and whispering takes a lot of energy. I have to go into the forest to gather strength. That makes me feel better and I can carry on.

yanina

Babka Yanina, Belarus Whisperer: “My uncle taught me to whisper. He was a powerful sorcerer. He knew words that you could say to paralyse a snake. I am able to heal tumours, fears, nerves and stammering. I attained my gift when I became blind.”

babka nadzeja

Babka Nadzeja, Belarus Whisperer: “My mother’s gift was feared because of the times she lived in: the Soviet government did not recognise anything holy. During the war I fought as a partisan against the Nazis, and then worked in the school. People would laugh at me when they found out about my gift but when they asked for help I could not refuse them. Sadly, I could not help my family, Whispers only can help strangers in our family tradition.”

babka stasia

Babka Stasia, Belarus Whisperer: My Catholic family was very religious, but I lost my mother when I was three and my father when I was seven, and I became an orphan. Most whisperers are Orthodox not Catholic. When I was older my mother-in-law and two old women in my village taught me to whisper, and how to burn threads and use smoke (smudge) to heal people.

babka fiadora

Babka Fiadora, Belarus Whisperer: “I never went to school, not even once. When I was young times were hard, and children had to work. For 12 years I looked after cows in return for food. It was my grandmother who showed me how to use herbs and taught me to whisper. It was all word of mouth, because I can’t read. I only treat people when I know I will be able to help them.”

babka katia

Babka Katia,
Belarus Whisperer: “There was a communist in our village called Misha. One day he mowed the grass near the river and he was bitten by a snake. He became really ill and was close to death. He sent his wife to me, to ask for help. I was scared because he was a Communist. They disliked us believers so much; they mocked us, closed churches and sent priests to Siberia. But I could not say no, so I whispered in the water and he drank it and he got better. I don’t know if Misha ever believed in God but he knew the power of the word.”

Babka Vanda, Belarus Healer

Babka Vanda, Belarus Whisperer:  Her eyes like shiny buttons, hair tucked beneath a headscarf, dressed in a floral-print blouse, told photographer Siarhiej Leskiec a story about her grandmother. She was thought to be a witch, Babka Vanda said, and the local priest had forbidden her from treating people—until, that is, he was bitten by an adder. She whispered words into the wind, and he was cured. She eventually passed that power, to heal through whispers, to Babka Vanda.

The Hungarian Lidercz and Táltos Shamanistic remnants in Hungarian folklore
The Táltos Tátos is a female in Hungaria mythology of a shaman
I wanted to add this last part, the Hungarian Lidercz, because comparative methods used in analyzing ethnographic data of Hungarian folktales, reveal some features of Hungarian folklore which are remnants of the older shamanistic beliefs. Táltos are remnants of Hungary’s pre-Christian shamanic pre-pagan culture, but are only in folklore today.

I read from a book translated from Hungarian to English, really described more paganism than it did shamanism. The Táltos is a woman in Hungarian mythology which means shaman, from the book “Magyar mitológia” Hungarian Mythology from 1854, a táltos is in direct contact with celestials and animism souls during the pre-natal period before incarnation. Once born, the Táltos has a special mission in life to help the souls of other members of her society and this a standard for all female shamans of Balkan and Slavic ancestral lineages. and it is by fate of her birth that she carries the shaman power.

All women who are destined to be shamans, are apprentices to life or elder shamans in their 20s, 30s and 40s and its not until they enter their 50s would they even dare to call themselves a shaman. This was true then and its true now. For real shamans the initiation processes are deadly and cause great grief and pain in childhood, adult years and even into elder stages. Understanding the differences between karmic purification pain and shamanic pain is an extraordinary difficult thing to do unless you have lived it and are still alive by elder.

There is a reason most of the cultural shamanism of Balkan and Slavic traditions are rarer and this is because these traditions were held by women and of course as women were pushed out by religious corruptions and pagan leadership of men, so too were their shamanic traditions. Only in the more or most remote areas and mostly hush hush do these traditions survive.

Some information about the Hungarian shamanic traditions were maintained from the deep past, possibly borrowed from Turkic peoples with whom Hungarians used to live together before having wandered to the Pannonian Basin; and maybe is an effect of Eastern influence thereafter (Cuman immigration).

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Places where these remnants exist, like many Slavic and Balkan shamanism as well…
1. refrains of certain folk songs accompanying some customs;
2. certain motifs of folktales, e.g. sky-reaching tree, which was a specific belief among several Uralic peoples, having some resemblances to the world tree concept, but it was also related to the shaman’s tree and had some other peculiarities as well.

There are also people who filled in similar roles to those performed by shamans among other peoples: such as fortune-tellers, weather magic, finding lost objects, seers and herbal healers, but those too were later pagan traditions (except for herbal healers). These people can be related to shamanism (contrasted to the cunning folk of non-shamanistic cultures), because the former are recorded to go through similar experiences to expansion of consciousness, really are not those of many shamans.

fc934f917873423b84ed64953668d27bThe folk and oral traditions of those born with surplus amount of bones or teeth, illnesses and sicknesses of distortion and perception distortions (seeing things that are not there by normal people),  dismemberment by a mythological, supernatural and celestial beings, recovering with enlarged increased capabilities, struggles with other shamans etc are all related features can be recognized in several examples of shamanism in Siberia. This is true of all shamans.

As Hungarian language belongs to the Uralic family, we can expect to find them among Uralic peoples. Some of them maintained shamanism until the modern times, especially the isolated location of Nganasan people enabled that shamanism was a living phenomenon among them even in the beginning of 20th century, the last notable Nganasan shaman’s work could be recorded on film in the 1970s. The original location of the Proto-Uralic peoples (and its extent) is debated.

The combined results of several sciences suggest that this area was north of Central Ural Mountains and on lower and middle parts of Ob River. This approach combined ecological, namely phytogeographical and paleobotanic (including palynological) data together with linguistic (phytonymic and comparative) considerations: the distribution of various tree species in Siberia and Eastern Europe (changing in time) was matched against the distribution of the respective tree-names in various Uralic languages (filtered with comparative methods, so that only names of Proto-Uralic or Proto-Finno-Ugric relevance be taken into account).”

The Polish Whisperers
Folk Healers of Eastern Poland by Marek Kępa

An elderly lady is wearing clothes that wouldn’t seem out of place in a peasant scene from a late 19th-century painting. She’s holding her hand over the head of a young woman as she utters a strange chant, one that’s hard to understand. Yet one can discern some of it. A little later she pours hot wax into a pot of cold water and presents the solidified contents, stating that getting rid of them will ease her guest’s problems. Then the elder puts a piece of cloth on the young woman’s head and burns a small amount of raw flax fibre on top of it – a procedure that’s equally spectacular as it is risk-free. Shortly afterwards, she says she’s done and wishes her guest good health.

The above isn’t an episode taken from some oneiric fantasy story. It actually happened, as documented in a film clip entitled Szeptunka z Podlasia (editor’s translation: The Whisperer from Podlasie). Filmed just a few years back by Paweł Kołaczkowski and Kaja Palusińska, this healing séance performed by the now-deceased Paraskiewa Artemiuk, a whisperer or folk healer who lived in Poland’s eastern region of Podlasie, is surprisingly an event from the 21st century.

Polish Whisperer - The burning of flax fibre photo Andrzej Sidor Forum
Polish Whisperer – The burning of flax fibre photo by Andrzej Sidor
Szeptucha – A white magic woman
 

Szeptucha (pronounced: Shep-too-hah) or sometimes szeptunka, which translates as ‘whisperer’ or ‘one who whispers’, is a term used to describe traditional Polish woman-healers practicing predominantly in Podlasie, and less noted in other parts of the country, e.g. Roztocze and Podkarpacie. Their story is closely linked to Poland’s eastern frontier, an area influenced by mysticism and, in its central part, by the Belarusian language. Due to the peculiar healing rituals the whisperers perform, they are sometimes compared to shamans and the really powerful ones are shamans but the tradition of folk peasant cultures just call them whisperers.

But it ought to be said that the ‘magic’ they allegedly use is meant to be ‘white’ not ‘black’, aimed to do good, not wrong. Most importantly, and this is how the healers got their name, they pray for the health of their patients, whispering and otherwise uttering various Christian prayers of Orthodox provenance. These are delivered in a peculiar mix of Polish, Belarussian and Old Church Slavonic, which makes it hard for someone not privy to this composite dialect to understand them. Here’s an example of a whisperer’s healing prayer (translated by some learned soul) taken from a Polish Radio broadcast entitled Whisperers:

 

Evil ghost! Don’t wake the man up, don’t crush his bones, don’t dry up his blood, don’t touch the veins…From veins, from body, bones and eyes, from legs and hands and from urinary tracts take off herpes, psoriasis, stains and growths…

It is believed that the ability to heal through whispering is a gift from God, a gift whose origin can be traced all the way back to Jesus, himself a healer who used words. But even though the whisperers are devout Orthodox believers, they do have pre-Christian folk chants in their medicinal repertoire. Moreover, they perform bizarre ceremonial actions during their séances, like the already-mentioned burning of flax and pouring of wax into water. Among the practice’s classic therapies, you can also find rubbing an ill body with a glass filled with wood ashes and neatly wrapped in a napkin.

 

Due to these near-pagan rituals, the Orthodox Church doesn’t approve of whispering, but not in a particularly stringent manner: for example, a prominent whisperer is known to have been admitted to a church choir.

Polish Whisperer Anna Bondaruk in Rutka 2007 photo by Andrzej Sidor.png
Polish Whisperer Anna Bondaruk in Rutka 2007 photo by Andrzej Sidor
Holding divine powers within and using it for healing
When He entered Capernaum a centurion came to Him, pleading with Him, ‘Lord, my servant is lying at home paralysed, in terrible agony!’ ‘I will come and heal him,’ He told him. ‘Lord’ the centurion replied, ‘I am not worthy to have You come under my roof. But only say the word, and my servant will be cured (…)’. Hearing this, Jesus was amazed and said to those following Him, ‘I assure you: I have not found anyone in Israel with so great a faith! (…) Then Jesus told the centurion, ‘Go.

As you have believed, let it be done for you.’ And his servant was cured that very moment.But even though the whisperers’ faith is profound, it has its limitations. They believe that their prayers and rituals can treat only a handful of illnesses. For example, the full paralysis described in the biblical quotation, and other serious conditions, is out of their reach. This is probably because they were influenced by the restrictive religions of woman’s power, but those days are gone now in other parts of the world where Polish women have the freedom to go all the way in their shamanic gifts.

 
A being existing within the human body
So what are the conditions the whisperers believe they can treat? First off, there is przewianie or ‘the chills’ – shivers or even physical pain caused by a cold wind. Róża or ‘rose’ is a reddening of the skin, also a rash, though it oughtn’t be confused with similar official skin diseases like Erysipelas. Przestrach or ‘fright’ is a kind of agitation caused by an abrupt, unpleasant event.Urok which stands for ‘charm’, is when someone is, as the name implies, under the influence of a bad charm cast by somebody else. Finally there’s nerw-kołtun or the ‘nerve-plait’, a complex notion, explained in the following quote taken from an article published in Białostocki Medyk (Białystok Medic), the journal of the Medical University of Białystok, by ethnologist and whisperers expert Małgorzata Anna Charyton:

This complex conviction encompasses traditional folk psychology modernised by the whisperers. (…) I’ve portrayed the plait – a folk illness that’s caused by the activation of an idle being existing within the human body. Historically, that being was called a ‘gościec’ [ed: guestlin]. Today the whisperers relate the disease-causing mechanism of irritation to nervousness, anxiety. The syndromes of this strange condition are said to include insomnia, abdominal pains and a general weakness of the body.

Even if these descriptions don’t seem convincing from a medical standpoint, one should remember that the whisperers intention is to bring good into the world. They believe their gift is an obligation – since they’ve received it gratis from up above, they should share it with others here on Earth free of charge too. They haven’t invented all of this as a scam to obtain money.

 

In fact, a whisperer might even feel offended if you offered her payment for her services. Customarily, people leave something sweet on the table in the visiting room, or a coin, which will without doubt be spent at the local Orthodox Church to purchase a candle.

 

Polish Whisperer Paraskiewa Artemiuk in Parcewo, photo by Andrzej Sidor
Polish Whisperer Paraskiewa Artemiuk in Parcewo, photo by Andrzej Sidor
Polish Whisperers are still popular
People from all around Poland come to the whisperers for help. There’s no shortage of patients, mostly those who can’t find a solution to their problem through official healthcare. You don’t visit a whisperer, for instance, with a twisted ankle – even if you did, they’d just tell you to go to a regular doctor instead. When a whisperer sees she can’t be of help, she doesn’t hesitate to say so.
 
Most of the problems the whisperers deal with are actually of a psychological nature. When you come to think of it, fright, charm and nerve-plait are very similar in meaning to things like anxiety, nervousness or stress disorder. It seems that folk treatment of these issues may be beneficial in some cases.
 
Even if just a placebo, they help make immaterial problems palpable. Say you’re feeling nervous and can’t sleep at night? Let’s get rid of that, just like we get rid of the chunk of solidified wax, an embodiment of the issue.
 
People get to see the problem with their own eyes and that it’s being dealt with. Sometimes that’s enough to provide consolation. That’s why many of the whisperers’ rituals revolve around drawing the illness out of the patient’s body and disposing of it. Here’s what anthropologist Zuzanna Grębecka says about the burning of flax in the aforementioned Polish Radio broadcast:
 
Flax is a common and therefore familiar plant in the region. Moreover, it has properties that allow it to combust and drift in the air, and it therefore can symbolise burning and blowing out a malady. Also, it resembles human hair; there are very old folk beliefs connected with tangles, according to which humans have within them diverse sicknesses and sometimes these sicknesses surface in the form of matted hair (…). And so flax may symbolise tangled hair, which we can remove in the ritual.
 
In some cases you can also receive accompanying ‘medicines’: bread, poppy seeds or water that has been prayed over by the healer.
 
A fading practice but it will be revived by the young
Nowadays however, the number of people you can turn to for this kind of help is decreasing but Poles in other countries have the freedom to grow their practices without any blocks. There are only about a dozen or so whisperers left in the villages of Podlasie, and nearly all of them are of advanced age. The previously-mentioned Mrs. Paraskiewa Artemiuk has passed away since the filming of Szeptunka z Podlasia.
 
The elderly Mrs. Wala, possibly the most famous whisperer of all, is said to have passed on her practice to her nephew (men whisperers are rarer than female ones, but some consider them more powerful). She’s lucky to have found someone interested in continuing her work. The intricacies of whispering, the texts of the various prayers, the lore explaining which of them apply to which illnesses, all of that has been passed on by many generations, but now there’s hardly any interest among the young people of Podlasie to keep up the tradition. Jobs that provide a steady pay are preferred. Inevitably, the practice of whispering is fading.
 

Also, the whisperers’ primary mission has become obsolete. They used to provide local healthcare to their communities in times when many of their members couldn’t afford a doctor. Today, it’s much easier to get regular medical care than in the old days, so people often choose it over going to a folk healer.

Polish Whisperer Mrs Hajduczenia disposing of the ashes after a healing sance in the village of Jawka 2007.png
Polish Whisperer Mrs Hajduczenia disposing of the ashes after a healing, Village of Jawka
Disturbing things
The demise of whispering is something that quite a few people applaud. Especially those that see this craft as a ‘superstition’ or ‘mumbo-jumbo’ due to its having little or nothing to do with the science of medicine or the church. Some even find it hard to believe that such peculiar practices as whispering take place in today’s Central Europe. Indeed, the story is quite extraordinary and if it were nothing more than that – a story – there wouldn’t be a problem.
 
In the case of whispering, like with many alternative therapies today, the line between providing help and causing harm is a thin one. Sure, receiving enchanted bread or being prayed over won’t cause you any problems, but things get a little disturbing when one finds out that there’s a special whisperer’s chant for cancer out there.
 
An incentive to keep fighting
Like with any other group, there are sensible whisperers and ones that exhibit a deficit of sense. If one of them indeed gave the advice to place the toilet on a crossroads then he or she definitely must’ve been of the latter kind.
 
Also, there are, so to say, phony whisperers out there, ones that simply want to turn a profit. These can be easily identified because they charge for their services, sometimes quite heavily – a true whisperer would never do that.
 
All in all, it seems that the benefits of whispering outweigh its downsides. It’s hard to find reports of it causing serious harm apart from the tragic car accident mentioned above. On the other hand, it’s very easy to encounter stories about it being helpful.
 
The consolation a whisperer provides is mostly of a humanist character. The healer devotes their full attention to the visitor, treats them like a person. Where there is little hope left, they conjure it up, giving an incentive to keep on fighting. Unfortunately this kind of approach isn’t always exhibited by official medical workers, who are often too overworked or numbed by their job to be concerned with their patients’ emotions.
 
Even though the time of whispering practices seems to be nearing its end, the cultural interest in it seems to be greater than ever before. A decade or so ago the topic was a rather obscure one, whereas nowadays it’s become quite mainstream.
 
Apart from the aforementioned documentary short and other films about the healers, recent years have also seen the appearance of an alternate-history novel by Katarzyna Berenika Miszczuk entitled Szeptucha, where one of the key characters is a modern-day whisperer.

Polish Whisperer Paraskiewa Artemiuk performing a healing ritual in the village Parcewo, photo Andre
Polish Whisperer Paraskiewa Artemiuk, healing ritual, village Parcewo, photo Andrzej Sidor
Additionally, earlier this year the interdisciplinary festival SlowFest including theatrical, music, film and literary events was held in the town of Supraśl in the Podlasie region – one of its fixtures was a series of lectures on whisperers given by the above-quoted s.
 
In 2009, the script of the play Opowieści Teremiszczańskie (Teremiski Tales) was published in the Podlasie village of Teremiski. In the play, partially based on accounts about real-life whisperers, one of the characters says:
 
The whisperers use ashes to heal.
A whisperer\ can heal with nothing

more than a prayer and a light soul.
You took ashes from the oven, mixed
them with water, making a ball,
a whisperer would then run the ball
over the sore body part, while at it

she would pray quietly.

Video: In English

Videos in Polish:

Szptucha – zamawianie / бабушка бабка babka
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWzwV1FL_DY

Szeptunka z Podlasia
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=niKilHkFBec

Recently Molfar/Molfarka culture was brought back into the mainstream again when it was popularized by Mykhailo Kotsiubynsky’s book “Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors” published in 1911 and the subsequent film released in 1964 and hopefully the rest of the Slavic, Balkan and Eastern European cultures will also return.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1eINPmXuw4

If you share please use original link here. Blessings, Phoenix 

Sources: All photos of the Babka’s of Belarus taken by Siarhiej Leskiec at the https://www.theguardian.com/world/gallery/2016/aug/29/the-last-whisperers-of-belarus-in-pictures; Artwork of Wardruna by David D’Andrea with added words by me of what Wardruna means; Photo of Ukraine woman from http://www.facebook.com/TretiPivni, additional copy at Wiki and Ukrainian websites translated; Marek Kępa via https://culture.pl; In Belarus, the Ancient Tradition of Healing Whispers Slowly Disappears A centuries-old practice with little place in the modern world by Anika Burgess for Atlas Obscura. 

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90 Comments Add yours

  1. gerrie1020 says:

    Dziękuję! A friend posted your article on Facebook today! It is very timely – I just got back from an ancestors circle where I’ve been working with my mother’s Polish lineage. Goosebumps! Such luscious synchronicity! My ancestors have answered me through this article. Blessings.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for letting me know gerrie, i am glad your soul found it !! blessings to you!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. karmic light says:

        It will be interesting for you to find out about Solomonar culture. They are shaman also but from Romania, the oldest culture in the world. They had/have the ability to change karma/way of karma… A lot of so called shaman are coming to Romania to find out more but they are going back without nothing because they are blessed to find out what their Ego not heart is looking for. For the heart bless you need to find out Zamolxe.

        Like

      2. Thanks Karmic Light, I am very aware and familiar with this ability myself, and agree with you completely. I love Romanian culture! And the last thing you shared was Zamolxe – can you elaborate on that.

        Like

    2. Fascinating and here is why: at a training program we were asked to approach the fire and loudly identify ourselves as Shamans; I approached the fire and whispered as per inner compulsion to do so. First time I have heard of whispering and I am Shaman in Training, not shaman

      Liked by 1 person

      1. There are many types of whispering of many types of healing work, this is a bit different… whispering of a shaman is an exorcist.

        Like

  2. Elinor says:

    This is a wonderful read. Do you have any texts that you could refer me to to find out more about the history of these practices?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry Elinor I am not really a reader, I live the oral tradition and teach this to dedicated apprentices

      Like

      1. Katherine Berezniy says:

        i am here thru the hands of Spirit
        I’ve been praying for you
        I am of White Russian/carpathian/Slavic heritage
        I’ve been learning indigenous practice with the native path, asking for my ancecrial
        Ways …the white road : the tree of life, bear, Raven …. my grandmother was a healer/dream walker /plant woman
        I dream, I talk to the other side, I’ve seen myself standing next to myself, I need to be in nature..,.i could go on
        Seeing the bear effigy sent me back in time

        After reading your article I said out loud I am a Carpathian dreamwalker & a blue flame shot up in my woodstove & the hawk outside called louding in confirmation

        I need guidance to use the flow of ancestral knowledge that resides in my soul trying to blossom

        I need to be a apprentice With you
        If you can not assist me any direction further on this path of my life would be greatly appreciated

        Thank you
        Many Blessings
        Katherine Bereznij

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Spiralout says:

      Do you have any information on Shamans from Balkan area and its practice?
      Thank you

      Like

      1. Hello spiralout, i don’t but if i do run across some i will post them on this web

        Liked by 2 people

      2. danka says:

        yes i do, bit, born there, serbian

        Liked by 1 person

  3. LSG_Ocean Lee says:

    Interesting article! We are blessed to live in a time when shamanism is returning to its place of respect!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Anita says:

    Lovely article. I am adopted, a shaman, and beyond genetics I can never know my family/past. I don’t ‘fit’ abilities wise with the other Shamans I know (my own fault, no ‘teacher’ so I learned on my own. A mixed media mystic like my art lol.) This article gives me good jumping off points to find others with like skills to connect with! Thank you!! Its hard to do things without folks who ‘speak your language .’

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the catch, i missed one !

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Rico says:

        I also really loved the article. Thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you Rico, and thank you for the lyrics, i will share on other places, is that your main focus in your work, the Hutsul or do you have various things you study or do

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Rico says:

    Here is a Hutsul song that was sung to me some years ago by a woman from the Carpathians: https://vimeo.com/115723610

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, i will listen right now, phoenix

      Like

      1. Rico says:

        Here are the lyrics. A friend of mine wants to improve on them, so I didn’t include them in the video yet.

        I will hang a little cradle in a garden from a linden tree.
        And the wind will gently rock my little child.
        Grow, grow, my little son, grow up big and strong.
        So you can cut some wood for your mother and bring her water.
        Grow, grow, my little son, my green meadow.
        All my hope is on you when I grow old.
        Oh, where will I shelter you?
        Under the leaves in the garden, under the sweet honey tree.
        The meadow will be in bloom and sweet honey trees will have their fruit.
        And my child will grow up and pick these fruits.
        The little river runs passed the hillside.
        We met there in that little green meadow.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Rico says:

        Hi Phoenix. I’m a filmmaker and spent a lot of time in the Carpathians making a film about salt. That’s when I met Dariya and her husband, the poet Oleh Lysheha. Right now I’m working on a feature called The After Party, which is about a group of clowns who celebrate after their circus has closed. Partly based on Ecclesiastes. Thanks for asking!

        Like

      3. That is great Rico, I ran across a salt mine with sculptures once in Poland, I might have the images somewhere, if i find i will share, also i posted your song that Dariya sang with your link to your vimeo page, thanks for sharing the lyrics also

        Liked by 1 person

  6. member Ukrainian native minority from eastern poland says:

    What Whisper witches in Poland and Molfars in Ukraine have in common? They are of Ukrainian ethnicity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The aspects of shaman are ancient, the layers upon which shamans access is varied, at the root all shamans are healers, that is the main aspects, when you add things like exorcisms, or dream walking, or shadow hunting, you enter many layers deeper of shamans who are both wielders of life and death. Each peoples have their own traditions and the individual shaman carries their own particular layer from many lifetimes. My grandmothers are of a shamanic lineage that is closer in description to the black shamans of Siberia. Once the Black Madonna was “regulated” by christian religion, the Slavic and Balkan people fell asleep and forgot she was a black shaman, but religion rolled her into the ‘mother goddess’ role, when her roots and origins were not and nothing to do with children in general. So the question you ask what do they have in commmon.

      Shaman is healer and that is what they have in common, my long ancestral lineage is southern Poland at the Ukraine border (once all of Ukraine) and it is the root of the Whisperer as a shaman (NOT witch). Witch and Shaman have nothing in common as the ways they walk their life, there maybe some similarities in objects or tools, but that is about all – Witch is a derogatory term given to women, all women (shamans, witches, herbalists, midwives, seers, etc) by Christian religious men all over the world, so I do not use that term as a shaman.

      Molfars is a word that describes something, just like Whisperer is, of a shaman-healer and both are still is around in modern times, all shamans are healers regardless of the ‘border’ war and religous corruptions that have been created in our past. Since i have a blending of both (poland-ukraine border ancestors), my ancestral heritage is shaman not witch, and is why whisperers and molfars are connected, not exactly the same, but the root is connected through shamanism, i call Molfars shamans and I call Whisperers shamans because they are.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. donnamferris says:

        Oh, I’m seeing much more clearly now with this article and so many loose ends connected. Being and not fully embracing my lineage, Lithuanian (folk dancer too growing up) healer and dreamer, etc., this is inspiring to me. Plus a huge attraction to Siberian Shamans. If feel we shall connect further…to see what may be revealed. Thank you for your Service. ❤

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Thanks Donna, glad you shared!

        Like

      3. Katherine Menges says:

        Hello, my grandmother is from the former country of Galicia which happened to have been in the same area as your lineage. I am pleased that you and I are connected in a way. I am still trying to find my way.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Thank you Katherine, glad you found us, soul sisters! Keep finding our way all the way to the end!

        Like

  7. Shaman says:

    Movement .. many .. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  8. shamamabear says:

    That you for a lovely post! Rather than Odin, I would argue that it is Freyja–the First Shaman who TAUGHT Odin the shaman’s arts in her”dark” role as goddess of prophesy, battle, healing– that should be the one compared to the Molfar.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Hi shamamabear, thanks for stopping by, i have read some of your work and respect it much, i agree with you, in my path, women are the root of everything, all shamanism, cave shamanism etc, in my article I was just respecting some Slavic Pagan information of that particular paragraph, I have learned coming from a very eclectic polish family, that if you piss one slav off, you’ve pissed 10,000 off, that was fine in my youth and adult to deal with such behaviors, but now as elder, I know the root of our past, and i live the root, for the seeker, its easy, for the fearful, its wiser to ease them into the illusion they have been living, otherwise it burns like hell, and I am not here at this stage of the game to burn anyone except when i do freelance exorcisms

      Blessings Baba Phoenix

      Liked by 1 person

      1. shamamabear says:

        Yes, there has been enough burning in all of our pasts. Blessings to you, too, Baba.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. SubZeroBC says:

    Wonderful read thank you. I have tried connecting myself with the unseen world with some success but found myself in a position I didn’t want to be in. I’m wondering if this means I was not ready or if upon entering this state of mind I have to prove myself worthy of good. Or maybe i don’t have a choice with fate. Any thoughts would be appreciated

    Liked by 1 person

    1. SubzeroBC, as a teacher, there is much over there in the dream worlds (the unseen) that cannot really come over here, so your safe, its when the veils fall and you are not prepared, that it becomes unsafe, stay connected and we have a facebook if you want to join us there https://www.facebook.com/ElderMountainRetreats

      Like

  10. Thanks David I will add the information and I put the “words at the bottom of the art” because She Who Whispers is what Wardruna actually means, and as a female Polish Whisperer and Wind Whisperer myself – I added it so others would know what it mean, and I didn’t touch his artwork at all – thanks for respecting David D’Andrea work and protecting him, i will add the information, blessings Phoenix

    Like

  11. Amera Ziganii Rao says:

    Thank you so much. I have always wondered why I am disliked as much within the spiritual circles much of the time, as I am disliked by those of the dark. You have articulated my gifts to another level entirely, and indeed boosted ‘my’ power even more. Amera Ziganii Rao

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amera Ziganii for sharing, stay strong and love who you are, down to the core to heal it! blessings baba phoenix

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so much and great love to you too. AZR

        Liked by 2 people

  12. Greg says:

    This is an excellent piece on the history of this all but lost ancient art. Thank you for you effort and knowledge. Blessings on your journey.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Greg, its experience… memory, remembrance all play a part, blessings baba Phoenix

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Gina says:

    Hello! Your article is so fascinating, I will have to re read it several times to get everything out of it! I appreciate your sharing of your knowledge, and I would ask one question, if you don’t mind…? My female lineage, which I feel very closely drawn to, is from the Baltic Sea area of the former Prussia….as close as this is to Poland, would you have any information on the shaman activity in this area in history? Thank you so much for your information and assistance, and blessings to you!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Gina, i don’t have any information but if i do find some I will post here – blessings Baba Phoenix

      Like

  14. Reblogged this on Tara Greene,Tarot, Astrology, Psychic & everything you need and commented:
    Carpathian shamans and Polish magical shamans. This is my genetic background. Russian, Romanian, Polish.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. thank you for this beautiful post. My genetic background is Polish my grandmother born in Kielz, my Grandfather was Russian, my fathers father Romanian, other grandmother Austrian/Polish. I have always remembered that I did not come from here and life is multi-dimensional. Always had an attraction for witches, Siberia, magic. I know the term witch was meant as a put down but i prefer to rehonour it as in popular culture it has been positively revived through Harry Potter. There are many types of witches, green witches, white witches. I have studied Indigenous Native American shamanism and their paths both are mystical but different. Shamans source energy. NAtive American shamans also call rain, change weather patterns. It is all the same for me at Source. That is why I also like to use the term Sourceress. Thanks for your wonderful research.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Tara for sharing, all things have many names over the many thousands of years. Stay true to your heart and you will find you!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. i hear you loud and clear and wholeheartedly agree. I am trying to destigmatize the word witch. Like the word crone or hag., these words were once words of honor for women. Much of my path has been to awaken women to their original power. Words have power. Yes dreaming into the past which is the present and future. All time is now. My mother used to read these popular books about Clan of the Cave bear and I believe these were past live sparks of memories for her. Caves, the wombs of the Goddess. We can remember who we were and who we are. Thanks for being a stalwart Goddess/matriarchy/wise woman/ curandera/shamaness. I am with you in my soul. Blessings upon you
        Tara

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hi Tara, thanks for the comment, words do have power, i prefer maiden, mother and grandmother as the stages of a female’s lifetime, my favorites are bone mother and death mother, its much more ancient than crown (crone) or hag, i was born old, and I will die young ❤ Phoenix

        Like

  16. Ara says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this wisdom and in keeping the channel of the sacred open. My maternal line is rooted deep in the Carpathians in Ukraine and Polish heritage and my Paternal has branches in Siberia. What you have said resonates very deeply with the core of my being. I’ve followed the natural calling since birth and have always heard the whispers of the Earth, her creatures and messages in the dreamland’s. I look forward to reading more of your insight and to deeper connection with your work. Blessings to you and to your path ~ Ara

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Ara, please do keep in touch, the slavic and balkan mysteries are pretty hidden as you know, we were the last as a race to be Christianized which means many of the rituals in dance, folk songs, symbolism remains true to ancient times and that is whats so great, i know the slavic and balkan pagan movement is big now, but they seem to be focused more on middle ages viking times, when the turmoil of battles the Christians descended, but that is male lead, what I am dedicated to and live in my own spiritual life is a time before that, before pagans and the roots of dreaming and shamanistic and animistic reality of woman, join our email list if you wish its eldermountaindreaming@gmail – blessings phoenix

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Ara says:

        I will for sure sign up for your email list, thank you so much. I look forward to unraveling more of this thread. I shared your article in my feminine circles yesterday and it called a lot of wisdom and memory home for so many. Again, thank you. ~Blessings, Ara

        Liked by 1 person

  17. Alef says:

    Hi, thank you for writing this! I have been interested for some time now of learning more about Polish pagan history and practices.. Sadly I am becoming disconnected from any ancestral knowledge that was available to me as my Polish grandmother is now very old and can no longer speak.. we have a lot of family in Poland but no one left, that we know of, by blood as my grandmother was adopted during WWII and her family killed. I would like to learn how i can honor and pray to my ancestors- in an appropriate way- according to polish/Slavik practice. Do you have any advice? Thank you

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hello Para, not sure what ‘dense’ means in this context of the article, could you explain that and glad you liked it

      Like

  18. Virginia Lonesky says:

    Wonderful to see my Grandmother’s heritage, and the unseen worlds she knew …but alas she passed when I was 5 years old… and it didn’t stop me from seeking the path through the tribal people in North and South and Central America as well as mountains of Peru. I always knew there was a long line of shaman from Ukrane, and now I see the inclusion of Hungarian…it ALL fits together. At the right time… I’m learning more at 70 years old…how wonderful… Munay

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Beautiful, thanks for sharing Virginia.

      Like

  19. Reblogged this on Shamanic Wise Women and commented:
    Adding this to the Shamanic Wise Woman, as it reflects the history of female shamanism. There is not enough information about women and their heritage. It is interesting to read, and see the videos of actual elders practicing. Well worth reading, and sharing. Thank you for writing this Blog. Nightsky~

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you and I will take a look at your page too, blessings phoenix

      Like

  20. edie stone says:

    Found your FB post on Shaman of Two Worlds, would love to share it. My background is in Celtic shamanism, and I love learning about these ancient and still living traditions in old Europe.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks edie, share anything you like and so nice to make contract with you! ~Phoenix

      Like

  21. Roxanna says:

    ty.I am of Hutsul blood. even 10 yrs ago…the word Hutsul was recieved with a blank look…. It is wonderful to see it anywhere but definition. Born in a veil. my Baba still has… I have had to explain many times, why no one cuts my hair, why all my teeth, and children’s teeth are in my possession. why the vest woven of horse hair, my hair, and my children’s hair, is very beautiful, but no…. you may not touch it. it pleased me greatly to see you post. I thankyou.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for sharing Roxanna, yes you are from the lineage of one of the rare white indigenous peoples left, always a good thing. My blood flows much remembrance of things I could not explain when I was young now as an elder and having honored this this type of life of an old soul, I just keep it flowing in a creative way and stop by again.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. pvwitch says:

    Reblogged this on Pioneer Valley Witch and commented:
    I saw this on Facebook last year and now I’m saving it to my Witch blog. I had long suspected that my breed of weirdness was a long-running, if secret, family trait on the Polish side, and this helped confirm it. In the past year I have delved into shamanism and it feels like coming home.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. jmh611 says:

    I cannot express how powerful this article has been for me. For years, I have researched witch craft trying to make sense of my dreams and why I dream the way I do. And although witch craft gave me some perspective I could never directly pin point myself in all of it. This summer I returned to Poland, the country of my mother, grandmother, and mothers before her, for the first time in almost 20 years. I felt it was here I would come to understand what I had been searching for for most of my life. Last night, I read this article and it literally felt as if it was written for me. So much of what you said about karma, ego, searching for understanding, and the fundamental suffering that comes with such a gift has been intrinsic in my thoughts and life. My beliefs are in the universe, I trust the universe, and I trust that it brought me here. I realized that no one has commented on this article in almost a year, but I hope you will see this and respond. I have so many questions that I would love to ask you in a more private forum. I hope to hear from you soon and thank you so much.

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  24. Hello JMH, sorry it took so long to respond, yes write me, lets talk eldermountaindreaming@gmail.com

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  25. Sorin5780 says:

    Where is the root verb ”to whisper” for these shamans, Molfar, Molfarka? Is it regular to form words like this in either ukrainian or polish? I’m not referring to -ka, a feminizing suffix, but to -ar, which seems to be an agent suffix.
    Usualy, you have a derivative of Proto-Slavic *šьpъtъ (whisper), like Pol. szept, Sb.шапат (šapat), Bg.шепот (šepot) and so on.
    Pol.zaklinacz (=whisperer), Ukr.шепітник (shepitnyk =idem.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am a dreamer and a shaman, I will leave those answer up to the word scholars and mind experts. If you come up with the answer, let me know and I will put in the article.

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      1. Sorin5780 says:

        I might have an answer, but I was expecting for you to know. It is your terminology after all.
        Bewitching in Romanian has several words, but not this one. Instead we have the verb ”a molfăi” meaning to munch something or to utter unintelligible words.
        https://dexonline.ro/definitie/molfăi
        The second meaning is what usually stands for witchcraft and -ar (older -ariu) is an agent noun.
        Some medieval communities of romanian shepards are recorded from Galitia all the way to Moravia. Now they are fully assimilated, except for those in Poroscovo and the sorrounding area în Zakarpatia. They employed this kind of superstitiones.
        If you find something concret send me a message.

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  26. Thank you Sorin, you seem very educated in these matters of linguistics, of word history, language systems, much more than myself. Those are not my skills, but the actions of actually doing the ceremony or healing are. Plus I am not a witch, I am a shaman, so I do not bewitch the way they do, I let mother earth do that for me as one who stands between the veils. My knowledge is not knowledge, its wisdom, which means experience and I know things from my soul, about the soul, about the dead, about visions, about healing, and from remembrances of my souls and animism souls. Whisperer in the way I use it is ancient, its not from any book or language system, it has to do with both the soul and the exorcist. I do not find these in words, or books, or scholarly or historical pursuits, I never have. In fact, quite the opposite. All of this is because her story is missing from all records for the last three thousand years, all her thousands of goddess names, her names for nature. History, Paganism, Books are all history and always have been. I have the richness of experiences in this lifetime to pull her oral traditions that were never written down, from my experienced and masterful dreaming abilities as a shaman, which has led to wisdom also. Now as I enter elder, I share it and I waited my whole life to share and what I do. But a word or language education is not one of them, so its wise to let go of expectation to learn something new, I did, over and over again in my 30s, 40s and 50s.

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  27. Barbra Ann says:

    Hello ~ For years I had a fascination with cave painting and all it entails, but it was when my newborn grandson christened me ‘Baba’ and Jean Clottes, French prehistorian of many caves, pushed me toward the shamanistic perspective that I found you on a search. All you describe in this post is carefully articulated and I appreciate! Not two weeks ago I ‘whispered’ little one-year-old Noah to sleep, a deep sleep, and his parents were astounded . . . thus, ‘baby whisperer’ emerged. — Barbara, t’ai chi & qigong instructor, student of asian culture and philosophy, nature nut. thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for sharing Barbara Ann, when you whisper to your grandson, know you are speaking to both his soul that has reincarnated, and his shadow and light soul from his past life. In the tradition of shaman’s who whisper it is exorcism.

      Like

  28. This was a fascinating read. I spent four years in Ukraine. My husband is a hutsul from Nyzhniy Bereziv. I traveled to Kolomeya one year and watched the hutsuly there prepare their Christmas journey, dressed in their 100-200 year old keptary (ornate ethno vests) with trembity (large horns), to the homes scattered among the Carpathian Mountains and foothills. They even were to visit the now vacant homes, with the belief that the spirits of those who once resided there, still live there. I was recently contacted by a family member from Celo Palanka (village Palanka in Cherkaska Oblast) and he told me that he remembered this man: https://uk.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Нечай_Михайло_Михайлович who claimed to be the last Molfar before his murder in 2011. The family member told me that he met Nechai at a festival in the Carpathians – that he was putting on a show, controlling the weather. In the center of the square, he controlled the sun beams to shine directly down on him and around the pocket of sunshine, he swirled storm clouds. The family member also brought his ailing mother to Nechai. She was diagnosed with cancer and doctors claimed she had only four months to live, give or take. Nechai spent time with the mother and she ended up living another 14 years. Nechai was murdered in 2011. Bad things began to happen in Ukraine after that. I believe I have experienced a crack in my life of “understanding”. Things I thought I knew no longer are so, and vice versa. Since coming to this new enlightenment, I’ve had wild experiences meeting people who seem to be more awake than I, for much longer. They usually mention it to me first, their ideas and understandings, and it always gives me goosebumps. This had never happened to me before, until I started experiencing this growing epiphany within me. I don’t know what to make of it or what the purpose and meaning is in my seeing/experiencing this for the first time. I often ask myself, what is my role in all of this? I’ve yet to know the answer, if there even is one. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your story Jess, and of course he is not the last Molfarka / Molfar, there are more. Controlling the weather like a Sorcerer and a Magician in front of everyone in public, shows some shadow to his character and because of that, I was not surprise that he was murdered…. you just don’t do that when your at that level. Also no real shaman (molfarka/molfar) of the light would keep someone alive when their fate and destiny was to die), that again shows disrespect to the natural order of nature and life.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for your response. You have interesting insight.

        Like

      2. Only “experience” in life is what i have and everything i write (which I started to write 2 years ago) is from my 50 years of experience. Felt at 60 I should share this with others outside of my apprentices now.

        Liked by 1 person

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