Foundation for Shamanic Studies E-Newsletter
November 2009

Vol. 3, Issue 5
In This Issue
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About FSS

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Shamanic Training
***Learn core shamanism from experienced Harner-trained FSS faculty.
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Faculty & Staff

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Drumming Circles

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Shamanic Products

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Among indigenous peoples of the past, typically one shaman was available, perhaps two, rarely more, to help a single patient. Now we have what I call "internet shamanism," where today a person may receive healing help at a distance from dozens of trained shamanic healers, such as by Three-Year program graduates doing journeys with their spirits. In a recent successful case, almost a hundred worked in this way. Though necessarily at a distance, these many practitioners and their nonordinary helpers can have remarkably effective results as a spiritual adjunct to regular medical procedures and treatment.
— Michael Harner, October, 2009

Members of the Circle of the Foundation:
Please help us by
renewing your membership promptly and online, if possible. Paper mailings are not only costly, they hurt the trees – and we would like to spare as many as we can! Thank you.

Editor: Susan Mokelke

Contributing Editor: Timothy Flynn

Tuvan Petroglyph

I have had occasion recently to spend time in a hospital visiting a family member. Waiting is always the worst, especially surrounded by many people who are there, like you, for loved ones in difficult circumstances.

Lilac Breasted
Roller Lilac Breasted Roller, Africa. Photo by John Kormendy, University of Texas at Austin.
I happened to pick up one of the ubiquitous magazines that haunt hospital waiting rooms, this one on birds. I opened the magazine randomly to a page and there looking back at me was one of the most beautiful birds I had ever seen – a glowing rainbow of feathers. I caught my breath in astonished delight. Our eyes met through the page and I felt the touch of this being's living presence. Calmness descended over me, time slowed, hope blossomed. In such small ways do the spirits show us their love.

Susan Mokelke
Executive Director

Submit your ideas and news for the Articles and Healing Words sections to the Editor.

My Windhorse <br>by Joy
Markgraf My Windhorse
by Joy Markgraf
Advanced Residential Workshops in 2010. The West Coast Two-Week Shamanic Healing Intensive with Alicia L. Gates will be held April 12 - 23, 2010 in northern Marin, San Francisco Bay Area. Registration is now open. The new 4th North American Three-Year Program in Advanced Initiations in Shamanism and Shamanic Healing will start October 17 - 22, 2010 in northern Marin, San Francisco Bay Area. It will be taught by Alicia L. Gates. SPECIAL BENEFIT - Free one year Council Membership ($500 value) to those who complete the West Coast Two Week or begin the 4th North American Three-Year training in 2010.
FSS Three-Year Graduates: Don't miss the opportunity to renew and deepen your shamanic training at the Post-Graduate Healing Practices for FSS Three-Year Program Graduates with Alicia L. Gates, now on the East Coast, May 23 - 28, 2010 in Madison, Virginia. Harner Shamanic Counseling with April Tuck, will be held August 7 - 12, 2010 near Portland, Oregon. Note: The Basic Workshop, which is a prerequisite for all advanced FSS workshops, will be held in various locations throughout the year.

Tibetan Living Treasures of Shamanism
Pau Pasang Rhichoe and Pau Nyima Dhondup were named Living Treasures of Shamanism this year with annual lifetime stipends.
Pau Rhichoe Pau Rhichoe with the FSS award letter accompanying his first stipend. Photo by Sarah Sifers.
Pau Rhichoe and Pau Dhondup are Tibetan lhapas (shamans) living in a refugee camp in Nepal. Both paus practice a shamanic tradition that is passed down through the maternal bloodline from grandfather to grandson or from uncle to nephew. They were spontaneously chosen to continue their families' healing traditions when at puberty they started having the visual and auditory spiritual experiences that marked their fates as lhapas.
Pau Dhondup Pau Dhondup with the FSS award letter accompanying his first stipend. Photo by Sarah Sifers.
Pau Rhichoe, now in his seventies, began treating patients after apprenticing and making pilgrimages to holy sites to acquire power. At the time of Pau Dhondup's initiation, China was invading Tibet, so he spent the next ten years having his spiritual experiences with no one to guide him. Finally, when he was in his late twenties, he was able to apprentice with both Pau Karma Wangchuk and Pau Rhichoe. There are currently only two known Lhapas (Pau Rhichoe and Pau Dhondup) left and both live in the same refugee camp where former FSS Living Treasure Pau Karma Wangchuk resided. View the video clip "Living Treasures of Shamanism" and other FSS videos.

As reported in our last issue, the Foundation is honored to support the Baniwa Shamanic Revitalization, which includes the filming and creation of a documentary record of snuff-jaguar shaman Mandu da Silva's practice and knowledge; organizing meetings to discuss aspects of indigenous culture and shamanic traditions; and the construction of a shaman's center, which will serve as a catalyst for activities to strengthen and revitalize indigenous culture of the Baniwa people of the Aiary River.
Building the
Shamans' House Thatching the roof of the Shamans' House.
We are excited to report that the Shamans' Center, called "Shamans' House", or Malirida'pan has been completed and that the inauguration ceremony is planned for December 1. FSS Field Associate Robin Wright will attend and video the festivities, which will also be attended by the President of the Brazilian National Indian Agency. In addition, several shamans from Venezuela will be traveling from their village several days away to attend the ceremony.

FSS plans to host an event Friday night January 29, 2010 for the membership, where Robin Wright will show video clips and share about his experience and his knowledge of the Baniwa people. See the FSS news blog for updates on the project.

Note: The Foundation is working to raise funds to further support the Baniwa Shamanic Revitalization. If you would like to make a philanthropic investment in the future of Mandu and the Baniwa people, please click here. On the "To" line, please enter "Baniwa Shamanic Revitalization." THANK YOU!

Opportunities to Join the Foundation Faculty The Foundation is pleased to announce teaching opportunities for Foundation graduates who have completed both the Two Week Shamanic Healing Intensive and the Three-Year Program in Advanced Initiations in Shamanism and Shamanic Healing. Visit the website for more information.

Shamanic Practitioners Survey. Doctoral candidate Linda Lee of Antioch University is taking an online survey. The goal is to gain valuable information that will help other health care providers better understand and appreciate shamanic practitioners and their perceptions of mental illness. Shamanic practitioners are encouraged to take part to increase the validity of the survey and better reflect current ideas and practices in the United States. Click here to take part in the survey.

Certificates of Completion
Certificates of Completion are available to all graduates of most of the FSS advanced residential training programs in shamanism and shamanic healing. Certificates of Completion acknowledge the considerable time and effort involved in the successful completion of FSS advanced trainings in core shamanism, such as the Two-Week Intensive and the Three-Year program. Request your White, Bronze, Silver, and Gold certificates online.

The support of members of the FSS Circle of the Foundation
helps preserve the knowledge and practice of shamanism among indigenous peoples such as Mandu da Silva, jaguar-shaman of the Baniwa people, and Tibetan shamans Pau Rhichoe and Pau Dhondup, and the renewal of shamanism in a contemporary context. We invite you to join the Circle by making a donation. Receive exciting benefits, including the online Shamanic Services Listings (with a photo or graphic) and FSS Forum, access to archival talks by Michael Harner, and gifts of DVDs, books, and CDs - and support shamanism and shamanic healing worldwide. Thank you!

Members of the Circle of the Foundation
We invite you to submit a photo of one of your creative works related to shamanism. Periodically, we will select a few of these photos to post on the FSS website. Photos of works might include paintings, sculpture, drums/rattles, weavings, and photos of shamanic places, etc. (Submissions must follow the guidelines below.) Click here to view the video of some of the submissions. Share your work with us!

Guidelines for submission of photos of shamanic artwork:
1. Must be a member of the Circle of the Foundation;
2. Must be the creator of the work submitted and hold the copyright;
3. No photos of people, please, unless you have a written, signed release to publish the photo;
4. One photo only per person.
Please include your name and a one-sentence description or title of the work. Send the photo as an email attachment to the Editor, Susan Mokelke.

Newpaper Rock, Utah - ©iStockphoto.com/Jeremy Edwards
Hmong Shamans Offering Healing in the Hospital
Mercy Medical Center in Merced, California, has an innovative program welcoming Hmong shamans to work with patients in conjunction with their conventional medical treatments. Read the article, "A Doctor for Disease, a Shaman for the Soul," and view photos from the New York Times online. Submitted by numerous readers - thank you!

Monkeys and Drumming
New findings shed light on drumming activity of gorillas, chimpanzees, and monkeys (macaques). When monkeys drum, they activate brain networks linked with communication, suggesting a common origin of primate vocal and nonvocal communication systems and shedding light on the origins of language and music. Drumming has been with us a long time – humans and macaques are thought to have had a common ancestor about 25 million years ago.
Cave at
Lascaux Cave at Lascaux, Man, Bird, & Bison from the French Ministry of Culture & Communication

Read the article from Live Science online. Submitted by Michael Flanagin, Three-Year Program graduate, Portland, Oregon.

Tour the Cave Paintings at Lascaux
Take a virtual tour of the 15,000-year-old figures of the famous cave at Lascaux, France. Click here for information about the cave and its famous animal and human figures.

Resurgence of Shamans in Mongolia
Over the last 15 years the practice of shamanism has been making a huge comeback in Mongolia. Read the article from Eurasianet online.

SUBMIT NEWS: We invite you to submit news about shamanism for our readers. Please submit no more than a few brief paragraphs, including the source of the news item to the Editor.

Core Shamanism and Daily Life
An introduction to core shamanism and the benefits of the contemporary practice of shamanism. Read the article Core Shamanism and Daily Life by Susan Mokelke.

Note: Each issue we plan to post on the website or provide a link to an article or other media with useful information about shamanism or shamanic healing. Check the Articles section for several varied perspectives on shamanism and shamanic healing, many from past issues of Shamanism/The Shamanism Annual, the Foundation's scholarly journal -- one of the exclusive benefits of the Circl e of the Foundation.
Handprint ©iStockphoto.com/Scott Cressman
A Knock on the Door
A West Coast Two Week Shamanic Healing Intensive participant shared this healing story, which happened soon after returning from the Intensive.

Alicia Gates said several times that "when we were ready someone would knock on the door." I didn't feel particularly "ready" – and I didn't expect it to be literal!

Yesterday I was expecting my contractor at 9:30 am. He is NEVER early. At 9:00 am the doorbell rang. I was surprised but assumed it was he. No one there. As I locked the door I thought: "Must be a short in the bell." It's wireless, so that was irrational, and the bell promptly rang again. I checked the back door, although the ring is different. Again, no one there. I calmed my dog's barking by telling him: "It's ok, it's just the spirits." I've never said that before, either! My contractor showed up 15 minutes later, quite early. We're friends and something seemed wrong, so I asked about his health. He gave me a string of complaints around low energy and feeling weak for the last few days.

We talked. At his request, I journeyed for him and asked about his condition. We ended the day with a power animal retrieval for him. My spirit helper suggested an extraction session sometime the following week, and my friend promised to call. He also told me that the pain in his abdomen, which he hadn't mentioned to me, was gone following the retrieval.

It felt more like "ready or NOT!" but since it worked – I guess I was ready after all.
L.C., Two Week Intensive graduate, Michigan

NOTE: "Healing Words" contains helpful practices, ideas and suggestions from shamanic healers, answers to questions of concern to those practicing shamanism, and inspiring stories. FSS presents them as a service to the shamanic community without endorsement; as always, each shamanic healer is responsible for using these ideas in a responsible and ethical manner. If you would like to SUBMIT A HELPFUL TIP, email the Editor. (A few succinct paragraphs, please.)

About FSS
Internationally renowned anthropologist Michael Harner pioneered the return of shamanism and the shamanic journey to contemporary life. In 1985, he founded the Foundati on for Shamanic Studies to preserve, study, and transmit shamanic knowledge worldwide. Join the thousands each year who take the Foundation's rigorous training in Core Shamanism, the universal and near universal principles and practices of shamanism not bound to any specific cultural group or perspective.

About the E-Newsletter
The Foundation for Shamanic Studies E-newsletter is issued bimonthly and contains information and articles about shamanism, shamanic healing, and the Foundation's activities. It is designed to offer interesting and practical information for shamanic healers, students, and those interested in shamanism. We welcome your feedback and ideas. Please contact the Editor, Susan Mokelke.

NOTE: You are receiving this email from the Foundation for Shamanic Studies because you are a member-donor or have taken a Foundation course or otherwise indicated your interest. For environmental and economic reasons, FSS will send out less paper communications. To ensure that you continue to receive emails from us, including course schedules and information relevant to the practice of shamanism, add info@shamanism .org to your address book today. You may also update your email address by clicking on the Update Profile/Email Address link below.

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Editor: Susan Mokelke
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