Animal Allies and Helping Spirits In Western Shamanism

Shamans in traditional cultures do not work alone; they receive help from entities living and dead who populate the many realms and dimensions of creation.  But how well do we, as western students and practitioners of shamanism, adapt to such seemingly alien customs?

I have come to believe that the advent of beautiful, uplifting animal presences – Eagle, Buffalo and Bear – is  one of the first signs that Shamanism is entering ones’ life. I have come to believe that these living animal figures are Archetypes, and they are as real and energy-filled as any of the other archetypes we talk about – not only in Jungia n but also literary and psychological contexts.

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Love Between Worlds * How Our Love For Animals Expands Our Souls

Transcending Human Limits * Love Between Realms of Creation

Many people are quite impatient with the devotion of human beings  to their pets. Their grief for a pet sometimes seems beyond reason to those who understand grief in human terms only – for the loss of a spouse or child, a friend or one’s parents.  I recall the bemusement of co-workers when one of us took a 6-week bereavement leave to cope with the loss of her dog. There was a sense that this was somehow inappropriate, though no one actually said so…

More and more people are opening their lives to the perhaps surprisingly deep, poignant bond between themselves and an animal.  We are learning that the love between a human being and and a dog, a cat, or even a special giant – one whale in a vast ocean – can not only equal, and at times may even transcend the bonds of love between  humans.

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An Extraordinary Psychic Reading * Mind In the Waters

This connection between my human mind on land with a great Mind in the Waters, has stayed with my all my life, a gift to my client, and to myself, a blessing forever.

As a professional psychic for many years, I often found myself in the midst of an extraordinary reading.  One of these has stayed with me more than most, especially as I have contemplated the beautiful bond so many have with their pets, and how animal allies are known to be mysterious partners in the work of a shaman.

But this was so different.  The lady had come to see me from Vancouver, a word-of-mouth referral, as I never advertised.  I had never seen her before and knew nothing at all about her.  As always, I began by asking her to say nothing till the reading ended, partly because once I began, the images and interpretation came in one continuuous flow. I didn’t ask questions and actually, had no control at all over the direction of any reading. It had been the way I first began, seemingly guided, and it was always the way I proceeded.

So, as usual, I took both her hands, and waited for the first pictures to form, knowing they would come, and when they did, I would follow where they led, wherever that might take us. I was quite used to readings going in remarkable directions – and the more odd or dramatic the directions were, the more accurate they tended to be.

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Light In Dark Times * The Gifts Of Solitude

One of the emerging features of modern times has been the problem of lonliness. In the time of Covid, we felt not only the effects of physical isolation, but even worse, the chill of alienation from those around us, with views sharply differing about social distancing, vaccines, and the rights of citizens.

These seem to be darkening times – whether the Shadow side of the Age of Aquarius, the Fourth Age of Kali Yuga, (as I have written elsewhere) or the rise of old, ugly ideologies thought beaten back in WW I and finally buried, in World War II.

The explosion of social media in our collective lives seems only to be deepening the fissures in society, particularly in western nations, where a coming chaos, even anarchy, can be sensed just over the horizon…

War in Ukraine, floods of refugees/migrants, genocide in Gaza, the rise of the far-right in Europe and the United States – suddenly the collapse of civil order seems less a non-western concern, and more one that confronts us here, in the no-longer secure bastion of the West.

Sometimes, we find ourselve alone through grief and loss, whether in death or in the breaking of family or other social bonds.

Yet there truly is light in such dark times.  Unique blessings are there to be found, on the road that is less traveled until circumstances force us off the main roads. It is often when our comfortable worlds are shaken that we turn inward, and there we may discover treasures long hidden. Solitude, however we come to it, is the key.

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Heaven and Earth On a Chinese Axis * Ancient Chinese Thought Behind the New Silk Road

Successful China may be, with a foreign policy which has spread its power around the globe; but China’s New Silk Road Vision is no celebration of the ancient land and sea routes linking East and West in a grand exchange of goods, innovations and philosophies.

Instead, it perfectly illustrates how China continues to carefully and successfully use its unique forms of strategic thought which are as rooted in ancient Chinese philosophy as they are in Marxism.

This fusion of thought in Maoism has been built upon by especially Deng Xiaoping and now Xi Jinping to navigate in the military, economic and political spheres of a world in which China is now supremely at home.

Comparative Strategic Culture and the Use Of Force, Space and Time In International Relations: Chinese Foreign Policy As Protracted War

My Master’s thesis for an MA in political Science was written in 1992 for the University of Victoria, and it seems as relevant now as it was then.

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