AnimismThe belief that everything is alive and has consciousness, soul, or spirit, including things that we don't usually think of as alive, such as stones, fire and water.
Energy healingSensing, clearing, rebalancing and strengthening the natural flow of energy through the electromagnetic field that surrounds the human body. The healer can do this by light touch on the client or holding the healer’s hands just above the body with focused attention.
Otherworld journeyingThe practice of going into a trance state using rhythmic sound and/or movement. The purpose of journeying is to communicate with the spirits and ancestors. During a journey, we travel in a non-physical way to other realms to do so.
ShamanismThe word “shaman” comes from the Tsungus (toonkooz) people of Siberia and means “one who knows” or “one who is moved.” Ancient traditions differ; many cultures don’t use the word "shamanism" but have a similar framework and practices. These traditions are based on animism. The practitioner has the ability to travel between realms through dreams, trance practices, and otherworld journeys. Use of the word "shamanism" in the Western world has been popularized by Michael Harner and others. To respect those who consider this to be cultural appropriation, I am no longer using this word to describe my work.
Spirit alliesAlso called totem, power or spirit animals or spirit guides, these are beings, usually in the form of animals or plants, who appear through dreams, shamanic journeys, and/or visions. Specific spirit allies come to specific people to offer guidance, healing, training, power and love. They may also be part of the person’s life in physical form. The person can learn to embody the powers and gifts associated with that spirit. The relationship is a reciprocal one; the person also makes meaningful offerings to the spirit ally.
Spirit WalkAn ancient practice. Spirit Walks can last from a few hours to several days. During a Spirit Walk, participants spend time alone and silent in nature. They make offerings and pray for guidance, clarity, wisdom, and/or healing. In a state of heightened awareness of natural and spiritual presences, participants experience moments of connection or epiphany. They accept whatever gifts come their way with gratitude. After a formal breaking of silence, participants spend time sharing stories, integrating what happened, and making commitments to honor the gifts in their daily lives 1.
1 Adapted from the teachings of Valerie Wolf