When braided together, single strands of hair become stronger. When gold, silver, and copper fuse they form a powerful alloy called electrum, far stronger than each metal on its own. What about fusing spiritual traditions? Could yoga and Kabbalah or Hopi shamanism and Druidism be blended together? If so, what might result?
Integrating spiritual paths is known as syncretism, and it’s nothing new. In fact, it’s quite old. Some syncretic traditions have been the result of intentional knowledge sharing, like the council of elders who united the spiritual knowledge of their Hopi, Mayan, and Cherokee traditions in pre-colonial times to collect and share their most powerful healing rituals.
Merging spiritual beliefs and rituals is sometimes viewed as diluting or compromising one or both traditions. But what if the weaving together of mythology, faith, religion, spiritual wisdom, ceremony, and ritual created a richer, more nourishing practice? What if, for example, we incorporated some shamanic traditions with our yoga practice? How might that enrich our lives?