"As for the Long Sleep, that is of course a widespread folktale; Rip Van Winkle
was no shaman. But its place at the beginning of the Epimenides-saga suggests
that the Greeks had heard of the long "retreat" which is the shaman's novitiate
and is sometimes largely spent in a condition of sleep or trance. "
He (Orpheus) combines the professions of poet, magician, religious teacher, and oracle-giver. Like certain legendary shamans in Siberia, he can by his music summon birds and beasts to listen to him. Like shamans everywhere, he pays a visit to the underworld, and his motive is one very common among shamans - to recover a stolen soul. Finally, his magical self lives on as a singing head, which continues to give oracles for many years after his death."
- The Greek Shamans and Puritanism by E.R. Dodds:
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