My practice of shamanism is largely based off of Northern Tradition Shamanism, and a mix of other traditions from societies all over the globe. I feel as though, if I can use a technique to connect to spirits, other worlds, and the gods, then I will use this technique regardless of the culture it originated in.
That being said it is fairly easy to imagine that I have made my own techniques and have personal practices that are highly affective for me. Sometimes I find that these practices are similar to other traditional practices and I enjoy that thought, but I am a Modernist. I use current knowledge and practice to excel myself and I still have respect for tradition.
Ive been researching Sami shamanism, and feel as though much of what I practice is also reflected in their traditions. I have studied shamanism on my own and under the guidance of a Pottawatomie elder that I deeply respected. He taught me the basics of animism and journeying. Part of what I learnt from him was a bit of Sioux shamanic traditions, which I now realize is extremely similar to Sami shamanism.
I have found that much of their shamanism centers on a thunder god who has many names, one of which is Thoragalles, Horagalles, and Tiermes. This god is so similar to Thor that there is no doubt in my mind that they are similar.
If you should like to read more about the Sami here are some great links:
As for my personal practices I spoke of earlier I will list a few of them here. These practices might be similar to others, but from my knowledge I am the only one who does this sort of thing. Please by all means correct me if I am wrong and provide a source of your correction, I will gladly learn of a tradition I previously did not know of.
Firstly, many shamans use musical instruments to achieve trances and move spirits around. These range from many things like flutes, rattles, and drums. The most common of these are the drum and rattle. My drum is a little unique in the regard that it isnt really a drum. For me, I use a circular canteen. I do this for a number of reasons. First reason is that it can be used just like a drum, and even looks like one from a glance.
The second reason is the symbolism. I fill the canteen with just a bit of water, which also then serves as the rattle. It produces a nice sound, but I like the symbolic meaning of the water within the canteen. Water is the very essence of life blood on this planet. It makes almost all of life possible, and almost everything is rather dependent on it. It is life itself.
So this life is contained with the drum, and I call forth spirits and use this life to guide them. I can also make an offering of this life water to spirits and divinity. I sometimes also ask spirits or gods to inhabit the water, and then I drink it, taking the life of the water and the life of the spirit within my body.
Another personal practice takes a more Northern Tradition approach. I recognize nine concepts from the soul matrix of heathenry. These aspects then coincide with a different world of the nine worlds. When I am feeling a lack in my soul, my spirit, I go to these worlds to reflect and meditate on these aspects of myself.
Now, what I mean from this is that things like my hamingja, personal luck, I feel as though I am just lacking in that department after a journey. If I feel like it is just lacking, I will do deeds to improve it, and I will also meditate and reach out to a world I associate with hamingja. This way I can hope to reach a conclusion as to how to better myself, and learn more about the nature of that aspect.
When meditation I use a soul tree or web as a graphic focusing tool. This tree resembles the world tree and has a stone to symbolize each world and the aspect of the soul I associate it with. I do this to reach an understanding of my soul, the nine worlds, and how I relate to those worlds.
I know this is not traditional, believe me I know. This is a personal practice, and if you dont agree with it then you simply dont have to practice it. But if you want a way to ponder upon your soul, the worlds, and yourself then you might try this. When focusing on a world/aspect I hold the stone and go into a trance and let myself reflect.
In a nutshell, this is an exercise to reflect on your soul, and thus better yourself.
Here is a link as to what this visual aid looks like. This sits on my altar and serves as a meditation aid: http://www.spellsofmagic.com/view_pic.html?profile=198090&file=%2fpics%2f90%2f198090%2fmini_1358990477%2ejpg
Here are the correspondences Ive made.
Lyke (physical likeness) Midgard Clear quartz
Hamingja (personal luck) Ljossalfheim Moon stone
Orlog (personal wyrd) - Svartalfheim - Hematite
Wyrd (fate) Helheim Snowflake obsidian
Fetch (animal guardian) - Jotunheim Tigers eye
Hamr (Soul likeness) Vanaheim - Green fluorite
Hyge/Mynd (mind and memory) Asgard Amethyst
Odr, Ond (divine breath and passion) Muspellheim Red jasper
Mod (the self) Niflheim Turquoise