James David Lewis-Williams, The Mind In The Cave: Consciousness And The Origins Of Art Quotes
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Shamanism is not simply a component of society: on the contrary, shamanism, together with its tiered cosmos, can be said to be the overall framework of society.
Consciousness has evolved biologically and can therefore be explained biologically.
Primary consciousness is a state of being aware of things in the world – of having mental images in the present.But it is not accompanied by any sense of a person with a past and future…
Primary consciousness is a kind of ‘remembered present’…
I believe it is reasonable to assume that higher-order consciousness developed neurologically in Africa before the second wave of emigration to the Middle East and Europe.
Improved memory made possible the long-term recollection of dreams and visions and the construction of those recollections into a spirit world.
Once human beings had developed higher-order consciousness, they had the ability to see mental images projected onto surfaces and to experience afterimages.
For the makers, the paintings and engravings were visions, not representations of visions.
In Lascaux and other sites, hoofs are depicted to show their underside, or hoofprint.
The portable animal statuettes were therefore far more than decorative trinkets: they were reified three-dimensional spirit animals with all their prophylactic and other powers.
Shamans submit to death in order to serve their communities.
The Upper Palaeolithic figures known as ‘wounded men’ occur at Cougnac and Pech Merle, two sites in the Quercy district of France.
The ‘wounded men’ may, I argue, represent a form of shamanistic suffering, ‘death’ and initiation that was closely associated with somatic hallucinati
In altered states of consciousness, the nervous system itself becomes a ‘sixth sense’ that produces a variety of images including entoptic phenomena.
The principal aim of a vision quest is to ‘see’ a spirit animal that will become the quester’s animal-helper and source of his power.
A shaman’s activities as a sorcerer, or his own conscious act of entry into the supernatural world, were a kind of “killing”.