Are you interested in classes?

12 01 2016

I’m having a meeting this Thursday night at my house at 7:00 p.m. to hear what people want. I announced it on my meetup: Santa Cruz Shaman meetup. If you invited. If you prefer, you can email me at:

Classes, retreats, sweat lodges, etc.????



Response to requests for training

3 01 2016

In response to inquiries I have scheduled a meetup for Thursday Evening, January 14 at 7:00 pm. If you are interested please take a look at my meetup posted as a Santa Cruz Shaman meetup.

Exciting new development

22 12 2015

I have just registered a Meetup called “Santa Cruz Shaman”. Please join if you live in the Santa Cruz area so that you can attend some of the sessions.  Please consider sharing this with your friends that might be interested.

The first meetup I have posted is a Women’s Sharing Circle to happen on Tuesday evening, January 5, 2016. RSVP required to attend.

Considering a Shamanic Journeying/ Drum Circle, Co-ed sharing circle, and a open Shamanic Healing Circle. Please let me know your thoughts.

Invitation and a Dream

9 10 2015

Open Studios has arrived already and I have done so little to publicize it I am taking the unusual step of cross pollinating to my other passion. My shamanic minded followers may not know that I also create art. You can see some of it on my other website:  (add the work portfolio if you have trouble finding it).

First, here is the invite:

What: Open Studios at my home (Art, snacks, demos and most important, time to visit)

Where: 1615 Heritage Ln, Santa Cruz, CA – which in actually in Capitola near the Target

When: this weekend and next, October 10th and 11th and 17th and 18th  11:00 to 5:00 each day

I am really looking forward to seeing people! Please come and invite others as well.

Secondly, the dream. The first dream of ants I can remember happened during a profound initiation in the Himalayas in Nepal many years ago.  Then, just recently I have been having recurring dreams of ants. This morning I had a marvelous dream. I was somewhere at a shamanic gathering and a woman I don’t know was showing the group an amazing garment she had made. It was a shaman’s coat, a heavy bulky garment. I can remember the details of it quit clearly. I instantly wanted to put it on. I went and quickly changed into clean clothes and return to her to beg to put it on. Reluctantly she decided I could try it on. As I began to pull off layers of clothing and then put on the coat. The seamstress watched and changed her point of view, saying I was the perfect model. As soon as I buttoned up the coat on I began to walk quickly swaying and almost floating across the land in perfect harmony and happiness. I realized the garment was silk with a leather band near my neck and was much softer than I had realized. As I looked down at my left hand (I am left-handed) I saw that a small wooden ring was on my ring finger featuring my three primary power animals. In addition my hand was crawling with small animals and then as I watched, hundreds of ants also swarmed my hand.  As I have recently been fighting the ants for ownership of my garden and home, this was not all together pleasant. incredibly, I was struck by the fact that I could use my breath to focus the ants in a good way and they began to move down my fingers and drop onto the ground. The seamstress nodded in agreement is if saying I was using the garment properly. Ants are  industrious and I am working to learn more about the ant as a totem animal.In the meantime I think of their communal character, much in contrast to my primarily solitary style and thing it is appropriate as I invite others to visit, but more so as I consider yet another teaching opportunity which has come to me. More about that later. Hope to see you soon.

Waiting for Enlightenment

29 08 2015

Many of my longtime blog followers have noticed that I have been posting less frequently. The primary reason for this is that I have been caregiver for my mother these last five years.

Several things about this have interrupted my blogging.

  • It is Mother’s Story
  • My lessons aren’t over
  • My attitude sucks
  • My creativity is at an all-time low

I was initially uncomfortable blogging as observer of Mother’s journey. It seemed to be her story. As I have since learned of the large community of caregivers I see that it is also our story. I hope to offer something of the shamanic view of this universal story while respecting Mother’s privacy.

Besides worrying about Mother’s privacy, I didn’t want to write from the disheartened place I am in. I hate sounding preachy or cranky. I am reminded of Jack Cornfield’s marvelous books, especially After the Ecstasy the Laundry. I have left the solace of a comfortable balances life and been thrown into turmoil. I have waited several dismal years to feel more worthy to speak. Part of me was waiting for completion, relief and some learning I will possibly take from the experience. These things may never come.

I have read several books people have written about their journey alongside a loved one facing death. I was looking for wisdom to help me through it. What I found sounded either: whiny, saintly, or clinical. Of these I admit being most comforted by the whiny ones, as in, I’m not the only one struggling with this.

Seeing no end in sight I have decided to blog despite the chaos. I am as discouraged as ever but I am back at this blank page. I have lots to share about shamanism and also about a shamanic perspective on aging well, dying well, and the work of care-giving. Look for more posts soon. I will try not to be whiny, preachy or cranky. I’ happy to be back.

Dog Piles and Other Holiday Lessons

25 12 2014

Christmas means a good dog pile.  When my kids were little we would get up early on Christmas morning, open gifts, drink cocoa, eat croissants with raspberry freezer jam then lay around enjoying each other with looks of contentment on our faces. I have always thought of these special times as dog piles. I think we looked like a pile of puppies with full bellies laying across each other on the sofa half asleep. My kids are grown now but happily time with them still feels much the same. My wish for you is that you have many such special times with your family and friends.

My thoughts turn to others less fortunate and I am reminded of a time many years ago when I was reminded of the need for compassion for others. One evening I turned on the television and began to flick the remote control to move through the channels.  I came across the image of a woman just as she said that her boyfriend asked her to give him her five-year-old daughter for sex in exchange for drugs and that she had done so.

Repulsed, I swiftly moved to another channel. But, it was too late. The assault to my senses was intense. My inner voice shouting at me, “She is you and you are her. You must love her.” This was in stark contrast to my mind which was saying “how could she, she is the lowest of the low, and why put such a horrible person on television?” My safe little cocoon was assaulted.

I felt the opportunity for a big lesson, as usual, suddenly and unexpectedly. Reluctantly I turned back to that channel and saw what a truly pathetic person she was. I would estimate her age at 35 but  she looked 50. As she spoke, the effects of her self-confessed drug use, criminal past, and bad relationships began to explain how this incident had occurred. Her description of the Hell she had been through was a profound and, possibly, life changing for some of us in the audience.

And I was asked to open my heart to her. This was not an easy task as I had seen the lives of loved ones devastated by such acts. In an act of faith in my unseen teacher, I followed instruction. I began to open myself to a greater self, the part of me which remembers how it feels to be a tiny grain of sand in a beautiful and shimmering universe. This part of me feels no edges between places, things, and beings. It feels joy at being alive and part of all things. From this place of unity I could truly love this person, see that we were much more alike than different, and that, yes, we were each other. I could offer her love and support as she worked to forgive herself and make a positive difference in this world. I could see that given different circumstances I could have been her. Now I was observer. In the past, present, and future I was, had been or would be both victim and perpetrator. I too needed forgiveness, compassion and support. As I offered these to this nameless woman I received them. I was changed by this moment and was reminded why it is better to give than receive. Please join me in praying for love and compassion for all, for good health, the joy of having loved ones near, and for our loved ones near and far.

Thanksgiving Lessons

26 11 2014

This Thanksgiving I find myself thinking of family and friends near and far. I am missing them all, especially my niece and her family who have just moved to Austin. The table will be quieter but less fun without her, her husband and their two small children.

As we hold hands around the table I know I will feel the hands of all of you and my other family and friends clasped elsewhere but linked invisibly with my own. Shamanism has taught me to realize that time and distance are mostly illusion and not nearly as important as intention.

Please join me in holding the intentions of peace and connection this holiday. If your family disappoints you in their attitude or conversation examine how an annoying person is different from you and how s/he is similar to you. I often see myself reflected in my family members, for better or worse.

I also see how my world view has changed over the years. However much I strive, I am not always the calm center I strive to be. Shamanism has changed my reality but not freed from self-created drama, joys and sorrows. I see that I can be difficult for others to be with, just as they can be for me. As I see myself reflected in my family, I learn to accept the things in them that I dislike and perhaps even those things in myself that I dislike.

This Thanksgiving and holiday season, I offer you my current mantra. It is old and familiar but no less powerful. “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me.”