Listen to the Interview on the Schapera Show on HealthyLife.net here
Shanon Lyn Harwood
Currency, the Book
Vivien: Hello and welcome to the Schapera Show where Viv and Neil explore this big adventure called Life. Our guest today is Shanon Lyn Harwood who has written a book for our times, Currency, that guarantees to challenge our thinking and open our horizons. Welcome, Shanon, thank you for coming on the show.
Shanon: Hello Vivien, thank you for having me.
Vivien: Shanon, you describe your book Currency as “speculative fiction.” What does that mean?
Shanon: This was actually a term that my editor Rod Chapman used to describe Currency. He told me that some people may refer to Currency as Emerging Fiction, but he felt that that term was outdated. “Speculative fiction” is meant to describe scenarios, a book that proposes tangible possibilities, and that definitely would describe the content of Currency.
Vivien: Shanon, can you tell us why you wrote Currency and what it’s about?
Shanon: What do we need to do to achieve change in the world? We are witnessing addictions to money, power and hierarchy. Currency is the story of 7 people in OH. The people vote in a new social structure and the book shows how each of those 7 people grapples with those 3 dynamics.
The story follows a young mom, Deidre, who is a champion of this idea. Her best friend, Kate, hates it because she thinks it’s going to rob her of what she has worked so hard to achieve. Her twin brother, Danny is also opposed because he has spent his life building up a ranch that he lost, and he wants to recreate this legacy.
This is a story of polarity.
Vivien: Wait! Shanon, you say that this story is set in OH? Why did you choose OH?
Shanon: Ohio seems to have an energy that sits on the fence – people could go either way. “Show me and then I will decide.”
Vivien: That certainly sounds like a spirit-guided choice. Shanon, do you know that Neil and I live in OH?
Shanon: No! I didn’t!
Vivien: And do you know that Ohio is located on what is considered to be the developing chakra of the earth?
Shanon: Really? No, I didn’t!
Vivien: And nor did I, but if you don’t mind, I would like to share this story because I think it fits right in with your book and I’m truly fascinated that you chose OH for the setting.
We arrived here in the US at the end of 1991 and after being here a few years I noticed that many healers were being drawn into Cincinnati, both internationally and domestically. I made a comment about this to one of my clients, and I thought this was random, but quick as a wink she responded: “Oh, that’s because Cincinnati is on the developing chakra of the earth.” To which I said: “What are you talking about?” She responded: “Yeah, Jim Hurtak in The Keys of Enoch (1977) shows this dove diagram and the chakras of the earth and the one that is currently developing encompasses Cincinnati.”
I got the book, and sure enough, on p. 49 there is a diagram of a dove, and Cincinnati, and much of OH, seems to be a source point for an emanation of energy. I thought, “That’s ridiculous, it isn’t proof of anything,” but later in the week Cincinnati got voted the most livable place in North America, and the week after that I happened across 2 items in the newspaper (of all places): one was that in 1917 Russian psychics had been asked to determine “the most spiritual place on earth” and their response was “Cincinnati, OH, USA” and two was that when Edgar Cayce was asked the most spiritual place on earth he also answered “Cincinnati, OH, USA.” So, then I thought: “Well, maybe it isn’t so ridiculous, maybe there’s really something to it,” and now, back to the present and I see you were guided to situate your story in Ohio. How great is that!
But, never mind, my stories, let’s hear more about yours. Tell us some more about what inspired Currency.
Shanon: I perceive that all of us, each in our own way, has the responsibility to shape the future. That perception, even though Shamanism is never mentioned in the novel, does take it rise from two Shamanic principles:
1) we each create our own reality (what we focus on, we create)
2) be willing to create what’s possible in the world rather than passively accept what’s probable
Currency was written to challenge cynicism and complacency. Possibly even more importantly, the novel addresses fear and the byproducts that fear has produced. Currency is a plan. A plan in the form of a thought-provoking novel.
My faith in humanity grows daily. I hear from brave, progressive thinking, open-minded people from all walks of life who recognize that our current political, social and monetary systems are not working. The economic and social gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots is growing exponentially. I love it when they tell me that they found Currency inspiring and that reading the novel gave them hope.
Vivien: Does Currency have popular appeal? How are people responding?
Shanon: A lot of people (initially) read the book with a high degree of skepticism, i.e.: “There’s no way the general populace would ever go for something like this”.
Time and time again, however, I’ve watched those same people come back around with statements like, “I can’t stop thinking about that book, and how different the world would be if the concepts in the book were instituted.”
And… often, once they’ve had time to really contemplate why their initial ‘buttons’ got pushed, they realize how frivolous, superficial and often inaccurate their reactions had been.
It becomes almost impossible to watch a television commercial (any television commercial) without a whole new perspective on what life would look like should the concepts outlined in Currency weave their way into our paradigm.
Vivien: So, Currency is a book about change? That’s a difficult topic for people isn’t it?
Shanon: Yes, that’s exactly right and that’s what I want to show in the book:
Change does not have to be scary.
If the timing for change is gradual and planned, (in the book it takes 5 years before implementation begins) then society has the opportunity to create the structures required to support the new systems.
If we’re brave enough to look directly into the face of what we fear, we take away the power fear has over us.
If you read Currency with the intention of pinpointing every one of your own personal buttons being pushed — that awareness gives you choice to potentially drain the power in those buttons.
Change does not have to be difficult.
Vivien: What philosophy or ideology is behind your book?
Shanon: The topic itself, making the world a better place, was inspired by Shamanic principles. There are so many elements of Shamanism that speak to improving our lives; even while recognizing that there is a perfection in everything – just as it is.
Vivien: And you yourself have quite a background in Shamanism, don’t you?
Shanon: Yes, I’ve been teaching and practicing Shamanism for more than 35 years. My husband/partner Marv Harwood and I were fortunate enough to be tutored by Spiritual Elders Joe and Josephine Crowshoe of the Piikani Nation for more than 15 years before their passing.
This tutorship was the foundation of our Shamanic School – The Kimmapii School of Shamanism.
Vivien: Oh, so you have a both a book and a school! We definitely need to hear more about that after the break, but let’s stay focused on Currency for now – tell us Shanon, what’s the important message of your book?
Shanon: It is really as easy as deciding, as a society, to create a new social structure with a philosophically different approach to life.
If we don’t make societal changes very soon, upheaval is inevitable.
There is only so much oppression, fear and scarcity that humanity will endure. People will begin to fight back with anything and everything they have. History tells us that. Why not make the changes now – peacefully, equitably, responsibly?
Vivien: Why not, indeed! Shanon can you tell us how to get hold of Currency?
Shanon: Sure. You can visit the website itself: currencythebook.com or the book is available at amazon.com and amazon.ca. Currency is also available for order in most of the big book store chains.
Vivien: Thank you Shanon! You have been listening to the Schapera Show where Viv and Neil explore this big adventure called Life, and our guest Shanon Lyn Harwood has been telling us about her book Currency a book about change. Please join us after the break where we will ask Shanon more about Shamanism and her insights into Destiny vs Fate.
Vivien: Hello and welcome back to the Schapera Show where we are exploring this big adventure called Life with our guest, author Shanon Lyn Harwood. Shanon has written an inspirational and challenging book called Currency, and it turns out that her book grows out of her background in Shamanism. Shanon, how did you first get interested in Shamanism?
Shanon: In 1987 – when we wanted to get married, we approached the elders of the Piikani Reserve and asked if they would marry us. They agreed to marry us — if we trained in shamanism to “bridge the gap.”
We were challenged to learn about Shamanism – we didn’t really realize what was being asked of us at the time, although the elders knew what it would mean. It was a complete lifestyle shift for us. We were under their tutorship for 15 years, and the lifestyle shift was gradual.
Vivien: Which nation did the elders belong to?
Shanon: The Blackfoot Nation. The situation is complex now, the elders had a different perspective that is not necessarily shared by the current generation.
Vivien: Yes, depending where we stand, there are always different points of view that can be equally “right.” I got accused of appropriation for a ceremony that I downloaded myself from the spirit realm, and afterwards I just figured: “You know what, I’m a citizen of the Earth and I belong,” and I made peace with myself about honoring every and all spiritual traditions.
Shanon: Yes, that’s right, Shamanism is on every continent and in almost every country. Nobody owns it, it belongs to all of us.
Vivien: What’s your definition of Shamanism?
Shanon: Michael Harner probably got the closest definition: “when a man or woman enters an altered state of consciousness, at will, to contact and utilize an ordinarily hidden reality in order to acquire knowledge, power and to help others persons”.
Shamanism is not a practice or a religion – it is the way you walk in the world. To be self-aware and responsible for all of your actions and thoughts. You are the sole creator of what happens to you. You can’t point a finger at anyone or anything else. You create your own reality.
Vivien: Yes, Michael Harner is Neil’s teacher. This whole way that we get led to our purpose in life … it’s a destiny thing isn’t it?
Shanon: There is such an interesting paradox between destiny and fate. From my perspective, we always have choice. Both destiny and fate are true and real and we need to be open to them.
Destiny: destiny is something we have to be available for and then step up to. It’s a matter of awareness: being aware, then perceiving the choice, and then stepping up.
Fate: we’re not aware, therefore we don’t perceive we have choice and then life happens to us.
It’s not a judgment, there is no good or bad, but what’s your choice?
Vivien: Shanon, this is all so fascinating. I love your distinction between destiny and fate, and I’m certainly going to be thinking about that a whole lot more. Before we end, let’s talk more about how people can find you, and your book Currency.
Shanon: Yes, you can find us here:
Web Address: currencythebook.com
School Web: kimmapii.com
I sincerely hope you will enjoy reading Currency!
Vivien: Well thank you everyone! We have been interviewing Shanon Lyn Harwood, author of Currency and also finding out more about their wonderful school. Please join us again here on the Schapera Show after the break when Neil gives us his report from the Spirit Realm.
Vivien: And now you have a center where you teach Shamanism and shamanic topics. Can you tell us about that?
Shanon: It grew out of our agreement to bridge the gap. After the elders passed, we realized that shamanism extends beyond North American shamanism – there’s so much more. We went to Peru and studied with the Q’ero, descendants of the Inca.
Later we realized that that was still too narrow, so we branched out and began to study more archetypes from around the world and history. e.g. Aphrodite – these larger concepts encouraged us to create a stream of shamanism called “Destinistic Shamanism” – a name we gave to it.
Vivien: What are your most popular courses?
Shanon: The Shaman’s Altar – here we touch on all 3 streams of Shamanism, but the core of The Shaman’s Altar is South American shamanism.
It Depends on Who’s Looking – here we focus on the archetypes – astrology, mythology, tarot
Spirit Speaks – this is a course where we study divination.
We do not offer online training, but we travel a lot. We have offered workshops in Germany, Hawaii, England, Australia, US in multiple locations.
About Vivien: Vivien Schapera is the author of several books, including Everyday Magic (2020) and The Complete Guide to Crystal Surgery (2020). Current projects include an online training in Crystal Healing and Crystal Surgery at CrystalHealingTechniques.com, radio show host of The Schapera Show at HealthyLife.net and founder of The Health and Healing Channel on the new TV streaming service, Everyday Women’s Network, which will be launched by December 2022.