Shamanism and schizophrenia
According to the author this is the first study on the relation of schizophrenia and shamanism which includes persons showing typical symptoms of schizophrenia who have not been treated in psychiatric institutions. The result of this qualitiative comparison is that there is a clear correspondence between Siberian shamans and persons with typical symptoms of schizophrenia. Dehnhardt discusses opinions pro and contra the similarity of schizophrenia and shamanism, medical aspects of schizophrenia and its prevalence in different cultures, untreated psychoses, shamanic processes, and finally forms of altered consciousness and their control (trance, psychotic states, psychotropic substances). The author found that there is a correlation between schizophrenia and shamanism while the former is not culturally integrated in western cultures whereas shamanism is - in the latter case there is often no possibility no notion of illness for these phenomena.
Keywords: shamanism, schizophrenia and shamanism, hallucination, psychoses, altered states of consciousness, spirit possession, possession, trance