If you are drawn to the topic of Celtic Shamanism or Celtic Shamanism training, today is your lucky day!
Listen in as I interview Celtic Shamanism practitioner, teacher, author, and really engaging storyteller, Jane Burns. Jane has been a Celtic shamanism trainer for over a decade as well as a gifted practitioner of sacred and time honored Celtic shamanic practices including soul retrieval, extraction, spiritual healing, ancestral healing, community healing and reconnection to our soul’s purpose and life plan.
Before we began, I read an excert from Jane’s website:
Sometimes life presents you with issues that are not easy, problems that cannot be solved by reading a book or taking a pill. It might seem that problems like these stand in the way of what you want and prevent you from becoming who you really are. But problems are not in your way. They are your way.
~Jane Burns, Celtic Shamanic Practitioner
At the beginning of our interview Jane introduces the poem by Rumi:
The Guest House
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
— Jellaludin Rumi
This is such a great introduction to this interview and a reminder that on the spiritual path it is helpful to remember…Greet everything that arrives at your door as a blessing and come to the door laughing, you don’t know the gift that is inherent in all of it.
Aim to see everything as a blessing, even cancer. We all have wisdom in hindsight to look back at our lives…and realize the silver lining in all of it.
When you recognize everything that comes to the door as a blessing, it accelerates you through the potential challenge because you recognize it and bring the shadow to light..
Jane had an inkling that something was coming to her, little did she know it was a cancer diagnosis…when she got the diagnosis, she realized it was a spiritual quest worthwhile for her spiritual journey.
She had inner knowing that radiation and chemotherapy was not part of her healing journey. She accepted it as a spirtitual quest that brought her to the practice of shamanism and the deeper teachings of Celtic Shamanism.
In our interview with Jane Burns the following topics come up:
Power Animals & Animal Medicine
Understanding and accepting your power animal can be a very useful association.
The shamanic practice of ceremony, ritual, prayer, community healing, and other devotioanl practices carries with it all of the resonance from thousands of years of sacred practice. (Anything devotional in nature, like prayer, prayer hands, the birning of sage or lighting of incecnse has a very high level of consciousness and calibrates at 540, which is the level of unconditional love and joy, on the Map of Consciousness®)
I recommend learing more about animal medicine and power animals. You can Google “Native American animal medicine“, “animal symbolism”, etc….it provides wisdom and insight into the energy and power of animal medicine.
Animals and the spirit of animals is coming to give you a message, even if it’s just for a moment of awe and wonder.
The more you are awake to it, the more they come. It’s fun!
They not only provide guidance and protection but they provide opportunity for expansion into your own fulness. Develop the strength of that power animal that lies within you?
Power animals are invoked for many purposes for shamanic practitioners. Soul retrieval, extraction, etc…
On of the messages can be, be willing to change your ways…
We all have power animals, but in modern day living we don’t give it any of our attention. They won’t come forward unless we invoke them through a power animal retrieval.
I recommend the Trilogy by Phillip Pullman which introduces the notion of power animals in a very compelling and engaging way. The trilogy includes:
- The Golden Compass
- The Subtle Knife and
- The Amber Spyglass
You can check them all out on Amazon here.
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What is a shaman?
In indigenous cultures the Shamans are the Medicine individual, Man or Woman, the Healer, the Holder of the spiritual cord in the community, the leader of ceremony, the invoker and communicator with nature beings and weather spiritus, the Oracle, the Storyteller, the Storykeeper, the intermediary for the tribe and spiritual ancestors and guides. The Sahaman is also the curse remover, priest and healer. It’s really an Archetypal heading.
On occasion, when working with a client, Jane sees the shaman archetype show up for a client. Though typically it shows up as an opportunity to step into the shamanic journey. Shaman, according to internationally renowned shamanic journey teacher and mentor, Sandra Ingerman, shaman is a term awarded by the community. You would not take it on and call yourself a shaman. In today’s modern shamanism, indicivuals take on the devotion and reverence of a shamanic practice, from whatever tradition they resonate with. As in Jane’s case she resonates with the Celtic shamanic tradition.
“We are modern day shamanic practitioners of the tradition of shamanism.”
Jane’s experience of shamanism started as a personal practice for about 8 years until she took it up as her work. She was then inspired (or advise) to take it to the community and work with others.
She likes to say, “I was “in the church” not that pew…but in the ball park and it made sense to put myself out into the world again.”
At that time, Medicne for the Earth by Sandra Ingeraman came to her.
Then, an Omega Institute catalog with Way of the Shaman with Sandra ingerman came into her awareness. She immediately called them up, and there was 1 openeing left to Sandra’s class.
She signed up!
Jane studied Celtic Shamanisnm with Tom Cowan and Soul Retrieval with Sandra Ingerman.
As she was ponder ing when, where, and how to start, Sandra advised her “just start”.
Jane started as a shamanic pratitioner, focused on soul retrieval. She practiced the art of soul retrieval clients for free for for 1 year.
So I asked, as I have always wanted to understand it, “What is a soul retrieval?”
Jane explains, we all have experiences in our lives that are frightening, traumatic, abusive, and accidental, the death of a loved one, the loss of something significant, giving who we are (as children) to earn love from others (our parents), giving up ourseves in order to receive acceptance from others. It’s a survival mechanism as a child.
These types of situations can lead to soul losses. Jane describes it as the soul going “off-line”.
Grief, depression, anxiety…soul retrieval and shamanic practitioners use the struggle as the portal to find the answer.
The practitioner then goes to find the soul part…to figure out what soul part is missing?
Examples of soul parts that may be missinng during a soul retrieval include:
- will and determination,
- strength and courage, and
- creative experession are just a few exmaples of what can be retrieved during a soul retrieval.
Once jane, or any soul retrieval practitioner finds out where the soul part is hanging out, she can work a way to retrieve it. Sometimes the soul part is distressed and needs healing. When a soul prt is returned during a soul retrieval ceremony, it is brought back into the heart.
Soul loss often occurs with imaginative children who are judged or criticized for being lost in the clouds.
There are ways to reactivate that part of soul loss like creative expression.
In the psychotherapeutic world it’s known as disassociation.
Jane considers soul retrieval magnificent work!
A key point we brought up in this discussion, is that ancestral issues and patterns can impact soul loss. The influence of ancestral issues can really hold us back from moving forward in our own life.
One example of an ancestral pattern is the belief that women are seen but not heard. Suffering in silence is a family pattern that needs healing.
Extraction work is carrying energy that isn’t ours like, curses, and anger are examples of why extraction work needs to happen. You need to remove the energy that doesn’t belong to you 1st., before proceeding with a soul retrieval.
When Jane works with any client she asks the spirits for assistance, ones with greater awareness and an eagle’s eye view of the situation from all angles, mental, emaotional, physical and spiritual.
Here’s what she asks spirit during a session:
- What do you see?
- How do you see this client and their issue?
- Was does their soul want?
- What archetype is emerging here with this client?
Jane looks at all levels to help her clients.
Other questions that are addressed during this engaging and comprehnsive interview about Celtic Shamanism, the Shamanic Journey and Celtic Shamanism Training include:
How did the shamanic journey help you with the diagnosis of cancer back in 1996?
What’s your definition of a shaman?
I understand shamans are not self proclaimed they are appointed by the community or perhaps Divine Grace. Sandra Ingerman likes to embrace the notion of being a shamanic practitioner and invoking the higher consciousness of 1,000’s of years of indigenous devotional ceremony, healing and prayer.
As a Celtic shamanic practitioner what is it that you do? Did you work 1-on-1? This inquiry lead to a discussion on soul retrieval. I asked Jane, “What is soul retrieval?”
In 2006 (10 years after you discovered your shamanic path ) you began to teach shamanic studies….Where did you teach?
How did people find you or how did you connect with your students?
I love the title of your book “Up a Tree” (shamanic novel and handbook). I see it was published, not too long ago in 2014, can you tell us a little bit more about that? Is it somewhat autobiographical?
I see you studied “core shamanism” with Sandra Ingerman…what is core shamanism?
Then I see you studied Celtic shamanism with Tom Cowan.
What is Celtic Shamanism?
So you teach a variety of courses:
- Celtic Shamanism,
- Celtic Myth, and
- Bardic Tradition
You are currently at work with a new novel: The Hungry Sea…how’s that coming along and can you share a little bit about the book?
Let’s chat about your current event with The Shift Network: The Gift of Celtic Shamanism…what kind of Celtic Shamanism training course does your free online event lead into?
Books on Shamanism Mentioned in This Interview
Up a Tree
by Jane Burns
Medicine for the Earth
by Sandra Ingerman
Fire in the Head
by Tom Cowan
About Celtic Shamanism Trainer Jane Burns
Jane Burns is a writer, practitioner, and teacher of Celtic shamanism and spirituality. Her introduction to the shamanic path coincided with a diagnosis of cancer in 1996. She began her work as a shamanic practitioner in 2003 and as a teacher of shamanic studies in 2006. Her book, Up A Tree, a shamanic novel and handbook, was published in 2014.
As a transformational leader, teacher and healer, Jane has studied core shamanism with Sandra Ingerman, and Celtic shamanism with Tom Cowan. She is a longtime member of the Society for Shamanic Practice and serves on the editorial board for their journal. She teaches a variety of courses on Celtic shamanism, Celtic myth, and the Bardic tradition. She is currently at work on a novel entitled The Hungry Sea, which is a modern love story interwoven with ancient Celtic myth.
All of her work is inspired by a 40-year dedication to her own spiritual growth and path.
You can connect with jane on her website: JourneysToTheSoul.com