According to the shamanic view, there is an invisible reality beyond the physical world that is accessible through shamanic journeying. In Celtic shamanism, this unseen reality is known as the "Other World." In the Australian aboriginal tradition, the unseen world is known as the "Dreamtime." Many shamanic traditions believe that unseen reality is divided into three separate worlds: the Lower World, the Upper World, and the Middle World.
Each world has distinct qualities, including particular gateways or entryways and a recognizable landscape. From a modern standpoint, the shamanic journey is a very useful means of accessing inner wisdom. It is a method of perceiving the psyche and world of spirit, as well as a means of gaining deeper insight into the world around us. The journey can be taken by anyone who has the intention of knowing themselves and the willingness to undergo the inner initiations that will lead to deep healing and deep self-knowing. Journeyers do not need to believe in the world of spirit in order to benefit from the shamanic journey. In fact, how you perceive the teachers in the Upper and Lower World is entirely up to you. Some people describe them as a deeper part of their psyche, higher consciousness, or even figments of their imagination. It is the way in which you work with these guides that is important, not what you call them.