Category Archives: Shamanism

The Bowl of Light

Hank Wesselman on Coast to Coast AM

The Bowl of Light

The spiritual teachers of the past did not just set everything in motion and then just walk away. They left tracks for us to follow. The ancestors continue to offer support by providing us with clues as to how to find these tracks and follow them. — Hank Wesselman, PhD

I thought I would let everyone know that my good friend and shamanic teacher, Hank Wesselman, will be on Coast to Coast AM on April 26th from 11pm to 2am Pacific Time, and will be talking about, among other things, his new book, The Bowl of Light (Sounds True, May 2011), which I am reading right now and I’ll be posting about when I finish. If you cannot listen to the live broadcast, you can listen to it after it airs at the Coast to Coast AM website.

In 1996, Hank came into relationship with the Hawaiian elder and kahuna, Hale Makua, and over the years Makua provided Hank with a rare glimpse into the heart of the kahuna tradition and before his untimely death in 2004, granted Hank permission to share sacred knowledge seldom imparted to outsiders.

More on Hank and Hale Makua.

Sometimes getting sick isn’t such a bad thing

We all get sick from time to time, it’s part of life really. Sometimes it is our way of telling ourselves that we have been working too hard and possibly our energy reserves are low and it is time for a rest. It can of course also be an indication that there is something deeper and more complex going on. Perhaps there is something that we have been procrastinating about dealing with. The list goes on.

I had spent a wonderful Thanksgiving week with good friends in California, and on the last day of my visit felt the telltale signs of a cold or flu coming on. My sinuses were starting to drain and I had a scratchy throat. I figured just like every other cold or flu that I have had in the past, a few days and I would be back to normal. Typically for myself, I just “weather” them and take as little in the way of medications as possible. I did a little healing work on myself and asked my healing team to lend a helping hand.

After three days, my cold seemed to be lifting and I thought I had it kicked, but by the fifth day it had moved down into my chest and my cough had gotten much worse. Again though I figured like other times, a few more days and I would be on the mend. No so.

In the fourth week, one of my ribs gave up and cracked from all the coughing and I could tell there was a lot of fluid in my lungs. By now, I had not really slept in a couple weeks, only getting maybe a half hour or hour here or there. I even resorted to getting some cough medicine from the pharmacy, but it did not help.

I decided it was time to contact some of my shamanic friends to see if they could help me out and I not only got a lot of healing energy from them, but also some good advice on very good herbal and natural remedies.

A morning or two later after a night of no sleep, I got out of bed and as my feet hit the floor, I heard a voice in my head say, ‘it is time to go to the doctor.’ Now in the past, I might not have jumped so quickly on the advice from the voice in my head, but this time I could feel the urgency.

Turns out that it had developed into pneumonia. The doctor wanted to send me to the hospital but because I don’t have health insurance, decided we would see if antibiotics would help, but she warned that if I was not significantly better within a week, I should plan on the hospital.

The first day after the trip to the doctor, I was feeling far better, and by the third day my lungs had cleared almost completely. Was it the antibiotics, or was it the help from my friends? A little of both I think. On my return visit, the doctor was quite surprised and said my lungs were completely clear. It seems that many people have had to take several rounds of antibiotics to kick the stuff that is going around.

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The end of something

When I realized that my life path was to include the study of Shamanism, there were a number of things that had been hanging open in my life that fell into place and connected. Everything started to make sense. Looking back on it I realized that everything I had been doing to expand my consciousness, the many programs I attended at The Monroe Institute, were all leading me to the study of Shamanism.

With Shamanism, at least when studying with Hank Wesselman and Jill Kuykendall, you are exposed to and learn all aspects of this ancient practice. You may end up specializing in one aspect such as healing, or soul retrieval, or exploring the spiritual worlds, but as my cosmic committee explained to me, you have to know how to do it all well.

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Coyote Medicine

I’m constantly amazed, although at this point I shouldn’t be, how things are brought into our lives and how before they arrive, we may not completely sense what is coming, but somewhere just outside our vision, we are aware of something watching us; something waiting patiently for that point of intersection.

We were given a list of suggested reading for our upcoming Shamanic workshop in May which will be about healing. At the top of that list of books, was Coyote Medicine by Dr. Lewis Mehl-Madrona, MD, Ph.D. I ordered it along with five others on the list as a start. On the day I ordered the books, I downloaded and installed a plugin called “Now Reading” which is now in the sidebar on my blog, and at the top of the list, I entered Coyote Medicine and put it in the “now reading” category even though I had not yet received the book and entered another one in the “planned reading” category.

The books ended up being shipped by Amazon in three separate shipments with Coyote Medicine being in the last shipment I received. When the other two shipments arrived, I opened them and set the books aside intending on selecting one and starting to read it, but never got that urge to pick one of them up. When Coyote Medicine arrived, that was the book I picked up and started reading. I was waiting for it but didn’t consciously realize it.

I must say I found Coyote Medicine quite enlightening in many ways. For one thing it brought back fond memories of childhood as he describes flying into Casper, Wyoming to attend a sweat lodge and tipi healing ceremony on the Wind River Indian Reservation in west central Wyoming.

My first four years of life was spent in Riverton, Wyoming which is on the southeastern corner of the Wind River Indian Reservation. My father was part Shoshone, and a registered member of the tribe, and during our time in Riverton we attended quite a few ceremonies on the Reservation and I have fond memories of those times. Between the ages of 4 and 5 we moved to Casper, Wyoming, but we would make the trip from Casper to Riverton to visit family many times during the year. Dr. Mehl’s description of driving from Casper to Riverton along highway 20-26, through Powder River, Moneta, Shoshoni (with a stop at Yellowstone Drug for a milkshake) brought back fond memories. I had many wonderful milkshakes on trips back and forth.

For someone who is studying Shamanism, Coyote Medicine is virtually a must read (and for those who are not, a suggested read). Dr. Mehl is part Cherokee, and during medical school, he was confronted by views, attitudes and practices that went against the traditional healing methods he had been exposed to by his grandmother while he was young. This book is somewhat autobiographical and chronicles his sometimes difficult journey to integrated traditional healing methods with modern medical practices.

Traditional indigenous healing methods cannot replace modern medicine, and both Dr. Mehl and Hank Wesselman say that they should be used in conjunction with modern medicine. What Coyote Medicine has done for me is expanded or widened my perspective on healing, and anything that causes you to pause and look at something from a wider perspective is always a good thing.