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Living Spirit – Shamanism Inspiring Life


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Course dates: 
Monday, 7 November, 2016 to Friday, 11 November, 2016
Light in the forest

With Jonathan Horwitz and Zara Waldebäck

The Earth is a living universe where everything is connected. In the shamanic way of life, we communicate with both seen and unseen aspects of the world. This allows us to come into deeper contact with both other humans and the more-than-human – Nature, Elements, Spirits. This way of being gives us an expanded sense of home and helps us to learn more about what it means to be part of the whole.

The ancestors of each and every one of us were once indigenous people. What connects us to them beyond our DNA? Our ancestors were able to survive not only through their skills in dealing with the physical world – they also knew the spirit side of life. This knowledge is not lost to us today. Each of us is born with the ability to connect to the Spirit World. Once in contact, we can retrieve some of what has been lost and begin to remember - remember who we are, remember how to live and remember to remember.

This experiential workshop will help you to open further to the invisible side of life and deepen relationships to spirit helpers so you can find insight and guidance on how to walk in the world and play your part. We will work with drum journeys, medicine walks, deep listening, ceremony and song to find out how to live more fully, and discover what changes we need to make in our lives so that our roots can stay strong and nourished in modern urban environments.

Often we feel challenged by the world around us. By bringing our spiritual practice to life, it can inspire all that we do. When the everyday seems chaotic or confused, we can keep our hearts steady, act from a place of connection rather than fear, learn to respond rather than react, and find a bigger perspective to sustain the courage it takes to participate.

Life is a ceremony and every day we have the choice of how to greet it. By asking for help and accepting support, we can work with power, change, responsibility and joy. Through shamanic practice, we can ask how to best use our skills, talents and energy; we can find out what we need to give and what we need to receive. By speaking and listening directly to the Earth, we come to a place where we ask not only for what we want, but also for what we need.

By re-connecting to our natural community including humans, nature, and spirits, we turn a feeling of longing into a sense of belonging. We invite a way of life where we are no longer isolated individuals but participating in the whole. We find a Song of Home.

NB: Participants must have completed introductory course The Shaman's Journey or agreed equivalent, so they know how to undertake a shamanic journey and have good contact with at least one Spirit Helper.


Jonathan Horwitz

Jonathan Horwitz has been working with shamanism since 1972. From 1984 to 1993 he worked as a teacher and field researcher at the Foundation for Shamanic Studies with Michael Harner. In 1986, he founded the Scandinavian Center for Shamanic Studies ( together with Annette Høst and has been teaching internationally ever since. Jonathan sees shamanism as a spiritual path and his main focus today is shamanic healing, spiritual ecology and shamanic community work, and how these three aspects can work together for the future of the Earth. He has a master's degree in anthropology, contributes regularly to Sacred Hoop magazine and was for several years the European Editor of Journal of Contemporary Shamanism. He has taught many times at Schumacher College.

Zara Waldebäck

Zara Waldebäck has been working with shamanism since 2005 and co-teaching workshops with Jonathan since 2010. Originally from Sweden, she spent 30 years in the UK, most of it as a writer and teacher specializing in creativity. She has 20 years experience as a screenwriter, filmmaker and university lecturer, and has run courses on shamanism for writers, presented papers on the shamanic journey as story, and written two books on screenwriting and creative practice. She has a deep interest in the role of story as a spiritual tool that helps us to hear life and connect to magic. She is a trained shamanic counsellor, and works regularly with place-specific ceremony and partnering with Nature for healing.

Together, Jonathan and Zara run the spiritual retreat center Åsbacka in the woods of southern Sweden, where they hold courses and offer shamanic healing, guidance and spiritual mentoring. They teach all over Europe, including UK, Ireland, Scandinavia, Italy, Hungary, Belgium and Russia. The heart of their practice is shamanism as a spiritual path, finding healing in all they do, and working with the Spirits in a way that invites power, presence, joy and responsibility.

£ 795.00
Course fees include basic accommodation, all meals, field trips, materials and all teaching sessions. The programme will run from Monday to Friday afternoon, and includes four nights private accommodation and all vegetarian meals from the first lunchtime you arrive through until the lunchtime before your departure. This course will take place as part of our Elmhirst Programme.