Category Archives: shamanic journeys

Grief, Loss and a Shaman’s Viewpoint

Grief-No rules Emotional expression is a social taboo. We are taught from an early age the “Ladies don’t get angry” and “Boys don’t cry”. Anger, grief, resentment, joy, love, sadness, shame, helplessness, pride, jealousy, excitement … We are taught to stuff these emotions starting in early childhood. Now, fear on the other hand, is spoon fed to us daily by government, religious organizations, school, media, internet and even the weather forecasters seem to have gotten into the game now. It’s not a wonder that society is exploding. All the emotions that have been bottled up and fermenting are quite literally “blowing their cork”.

Today, we’re going to discuss grief. This is one of the emotions we don’t deal with well as a society. Continue reading

Private Soul Recovery Sessions in AZ

shamangreen-pngPrivate Soul Recovery Sessions with Debbie Gent of Shamanic Connection

Debbie will be coming to AZ in February. She will be offering private Soul Recovery/Shamanic Journey sessions in the Phoenix area February 22-24, 2015.

A Soul Recovery will bring home lost soul pieces (our parts of your spiritual being) that have been lost due to life’s traumas and dramas so you can become more whole. Continue reading

Getting To Know Your Shamanic Drum

Shamanic DrumHello Friends. I’m almost back in the shamanic world again. Spring at “The Grove” is always a busy time, and a lot of things get postponed (like meals, accounting, blogs, housecleaning…) This spring we’ve been putting up over 300′ of field fence around the garden (including cutting trees for around 40 fence posts), getting new beds made and planting, as well as building a pen for our baby chicks and caring for the land. Keeps us out of mischief 🙂

So this morning over tea, I got a chance to catch up on one of the blogs I read, Shamanic Drumming by Michael Drake. We’ve known Michael for years and enjoy his blog and the book (The Shamanic Drum: A Guide To Sacred Drumming) and CD (The Shamanic Drum Instructional ) he has on shamanic drumming.

As you all know, we do drum making playshops/workshops and help people create their own drums. Many of these drums are used for shamanic healing and some are simply instruments used to make joyful sounds (hmm…I bet that’s still a form of shamanic healing…)

During our drum making playshops we introduce ceremony many times during the workshop, offering thanks and healing to the spirits that offered themselves to be used in creating the drum, and welcoming the spirit of the drum. Continue reading

The Worlds of the Shaman

artist unknown

We often hear that the shaman travels “between worlds”. When asked how we travel through time to recover soul pieces, we often say it is because in the dimensions we travel, there is no time, space or distance. That the spirit world is non-linear.

To quote our book Shamanism and Soul Recovery – Everything You Wanted To Know But Didn’t Know What To Ask –

“The shaman is one who chooses to “walk between the worlds” of everyday reality and the spirit realms for guidance or healing.

They are able to slip out of their ordinary reality into an “altered state of consciousness”. In this state of shamanic consciousness, the shaman is aware of both the physical world and the spirit world or “Otherworld” at the same time.

He/she acts as an interpreter for the spiritual realm. Shamans treat ailments/illness by mending the soul.

Alleviating traumas affecting the soul/spirit restores the physical body to balance and wholeness. They also travel to the spiritual realm to obtain solutions to problems afflicting the community. Shamans may visit other worlds/dimensions to bring guidance to misguided souls and to ameliorate illnesses of the human soul (Shamanism and Soul Recovery – Everything You Wanted To Know But Didn’t Know What To Ask, Debbie & Gary Gent, 2012, p.2)

So, what are those other worlds or dimensions we travel in? Many shamanic traditions believe that this unseen reality is divided into three separate worlds: the Upper World, the Middle World, and the Lower World. Each world has distinct qualities, including particular entryways and recognizable landscapes. The three realms are linked together by a vertical axis that is commonly referred to as the “World Tree.”

The Upper World above is the realm of unrealized potential, higher knowledge, and enlightenment. It is the domain of gods, goddesses, and evolved teachers/Masters. Many people experience the Upper World as very ethereal. The light tends to be bright, although the spectrum of colors can include everything from soft pastels to complete darkness. The landscapes in the Upper World are varied, and you might find yourself in a crystal city, phenomenal places of learning (i.e. classrooms and libraries) or simply in the clouds. In our training, this is where souls go when they are “taken to the light” to rest and prepare for their next journey. Here the shaman meets with teachers and ancestors who will aide the shaman through training and who will help guide the shaman in his/her work. Shamans also come here for cosmic wisdom, divine inspiration, insight, or to find ways to restore balance within themselves, their clients and Nature.

The Middle World is our reality as we know it. It is our day to day lives and the residing place of our physical bodies and our normal waking consciousness – the spiritual dimension of our physical world. Middle World journeying is a way of communicating with the spirits that live in all things present in our physical reality (Nature, pets, weather Spirits, the Moon, etc). It’s so parallel to the world we live in that we can visit all the places, people, and things we know in our ordinary reality. Shamans typically journey to the Middle World to find lost and stolen soul pieces, lost or stolen objects, or to do long-distance healing work. The shaman many come to both the Middle World and the Lower World to commune with Nature.

The Lower World is the realm of animal, plant and nature spirits, spirit guides, and the Land of the Dead. The Lower World is often be seen as being the place where evil spirits live, darkness pervades, and in general, not a good place. This is mainly due to our cultural conditioning of “Hell”. While the Lower World can contain some “not so nice” people and places, it is not a place of evil or Hell. The landscape in most places of the Lower World tends to be earthy, filled with mountains, deserts, dense jungles, and forests – the realm of Mother Nature. This is where guardian animals(Animal Guides/Allies) or helping spirits are found. It can also be a place of tests and challenges. This is where we often find soul pieces of those who are suffering and stuck. A spirit journey to the Lower World is generally undertaken to seek the help and guidance of an animal spirit, to recover lost power, or to find and return a sick or stuck person’s wandering spirit.

Shamans are said to travel to these worlds by climbing the World Tree. The World Tree is the bridge that connects these three worlds; it is the central axis about which the universe of the shaman extends. And it is on the Tree that the spirits pass from one world to another. The roots of the World Tree touch the Lower World. Its trunk is the Middle World and its branches hold up the Upper World.

extracted from Shamanic Connection’s Spring 2014 newsletter

A Winter Solstice Journey

Winter_landscapeThe Wheel of the Year has turned once more and the Winter Solstice is upon us again.

Over the years we have offered up ideas for celebrating Yule, or the Winter Solstice. You can check out this blog in particular – Winter Solstice Celebrations from 2010 .

This Solstice, our gift to you is a guided journey that Debbie created specifically for you. Continue reading

Helping A Deer Spirit

deerWell, my usual autumn case of the crud hit a couple weeks ago and left me feelin’ pretty puney and voiceless for almost a week. I spent recovery time curled up with my “blankie” and lots of slippery elm tea with honey, lemon and cayenne. Then it took me over a week to get caught back up in the office. It stunk as I couldn’t even return phone calls. So, the following story got delayed a a while.

Back in early September, I had a very interesting experience with a member of our local deer herd. If you’ve followed us before, you’ll know we live in the forest and share our space with several herd of “Sidhe deer”.

It was just after Labor Day here in the US when I was awaken from my sleep by a horrible smell. I noticed a slight odor when I went to bed, but just passed it off as something fleeting. I have a VERY sensitive sense of smell. Well, about 2 a.m. I came out of a deep sleep to a horrible smell of decomposition near my face. Not only could I smell it but I could taste it! Continue reading

Anger and A Fence Story

fence with nail holesLet’s begin today’s blog with a story.

A fence : A story with a great moral —

There once was a young boy with a very bad temper. The boy’s father wanted to teach him a lesson, so he gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper he must hammer a nail into their wooden fence.

On the first day of this lesson, the little boy had driven 37 nails into the fence. He was really mad! Continue reading

Defeating Our Fears

Fear is a four-letter word. It’s a big word that carries a lot of weight in many of our lives and dictates what we think, act and how we choose to live. Now don’t get me wrong, fear has a place in our lives. We are afraid to walk up to the snarling dog or stick our hand into someplace we can’t see.  But I’m not so sure that it’s not more common sense than fear.

We all have fears. Some we came into this life walk with from previous life experiences. Some we learn from those around us and some are taught to us by family, religion and society to “keep us in line”. And like I said above, some fears are okay. It’s when we become debilitated or confined/defined by our fears that they become an issue.

We often tell clients that the only power fear has is the power we give it. Continue reading

The Element of Fire

FlamesI didn’t realize it has been so long since I posted a blog. Summer has gotten busy with things around The Grove and garden. It’s been hot and dry here in So. Oregon, and for the last week or so, we’ve been dealing with being surrounded by several large wild fires. If you’ve been following our Facebook page, you’ve heard and seen about these fires.

This isn’t unusual for Oregon in the summer, as summer here, especially in southern Oregon is very dry. But this year we’ve had an unusual drought and it’s been hot very early. Our July weather is what we usually see in August. The dry lightning produced by a thunder storm toward the end of July sparked 54 fires in our area. Some were quickly contained, others grew together to create large wild fires. So far, we’ve seen approximately 40,000 acres of forest within a 20 mile radius of us go up in smoke. Continue reading

A House Clearing Shamanic Journey

Sometimes Gary and I are asked to clear land or buildings of negative under glass domeWhen we do this it can be a mix of soul recovery, psychopomp and energetic healing for both the property and its stewards. Sometimes we can feel like the crew from Ghostbusters containing and disposing of entities and closing portals. Other times, we simply assist stuck souls to complete their transition. And sometimes we have to help appease nature spirits who are ticked off by something that was done to their land (i.e. clear cutting or building a house in a place sacred to them.)

Why souls get “stuck” in a place varies. Sometimes it is because they have a strong connection with the land or home and they simply don’t want to leave. Other times they stay due to a trauma that occurred in that place, keeping a soul piece stuck and unable to move on. And then, we get the entities that are drawn to a place by its energy or the energy of the inhabitants and make it their party place.

I recently had a case that encompassed all the above. Continue reading