Articles by Joan

Site: Life Force Arts Ensemble
Course: Life Force Arts Ensemble
Book: Articles by Joan
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Date: Monday, October 26, 2020, 4:42 PM

1. The Art of Interpreting Intuitive Information

Being an intuitive is like being a detective: you must be able to hold many possibilities in mind at once, searching for the interconnections.  Both the detective and the intuitive try to get to the bottom of an incident.  Both are investigators. A dream will give some information, a shamanic journey may add to it, then a past life regression seems to be somewhat of a dead end.  But like the detective, the intuitive rejects none of the information, for in that very dead end might be the clue that leads to the solving of the puzzle.

Gathering intuitive information can often be polychronic: different parts appear at different times, sometimes overlapping.  The information may appear over a long period of time: months, years.  An intuitive’s mind must work holistically, as a musician’s mind works when listening to the various instrument lines weaving and blending, starting and stopping in a symphony.

The devil is in the details.  In this type of investigative work, rarely does the answer jump out at you.  Rather, it’s about looking for themes that are revealed bit by bit in successive episodes of working with the same question.  It is like being shown many close-up shots of a large picture, and then finally seeing the picture as a whole.

To gather all the evidence before making a judgment is the heart of both logic and intuition. It requires an understanding of the theme and variation structure, which is so basic to artistic work. To bring the theme back in a new light is the heart of the theme and variation structure. Similarly, sometimes the way to wisdom is to come back to an idea or theme later.  To wait to see what something means until it has time to ripen breeds wisdom.  This is part of the contemplative mind that is second nature to me – observing, then accommodating.  The skill of a healer, and of the artist, is the dialogue between possibility and process.

Joan Forest Mage has been practicing shamanic healing since 1995, and teaches a year-long Shamanic Training Program. She is the founder and director of Life Force Arts Center.

2. Client Survey on Soul Retrieval & Extraction 1995 - 2002

Introduction to Client Survey

This Client Survey on Soul Retrieval & Extraction, 1995 - 2002 is a survey I conducted from the beginning of my shamanic healing practice. I was well aware that I did not have access to the usual ways of evaluating and showing proof of my expertise as a shamanic practitioner. Shamanic work is not licensed in any state, so I could not become licensed by a state. Nor do I come from an indigenous background in which my expertise in shamanic healing might be attested to by traditional initiation. I did not attend a modern certificate program for soul retrieval, such as the Foundation for Shamanic Studies offers.

So I decided to assess and document my success or lack thereof by asking the people it most impacted: the clients. Another motivation for doing this survey is that, to the best of my knowledge, this type of survey has never been conducted. There are many narrative accounts in various books and articles that describe the positive effect of soul retrieval and extraction, but no complete, quantitative survey of one practitioner’s clients over a period of years. I wanted to contribute to the field by doing this.

In addition to the quantitative survey, I also gathered narrative accounts of my client’s experiences of the soul retrieval session. These accounts are included at the end of this report. I collected these as testimonials to be used in the brochure describing my healing sessions for individuals. To ensure client anonymity, I assigned a number to each client based on the date of the session: client # 1 is the first person for whom I performed a soul retrieval, client # 63 is the 63rd person for whom I performed a soul retrieval, etc.

Soul Retrieval and Extraction


Shamanic healing is an ancient form of spiritual or energetic healing which has been practiced by virtually every culture in the world for all of human history. In shamanic work, the practitioner, called the shaman, goes into a trance state of non-ordinary reality. This is the spirit realm of angels, ancestors, totem animals and other helpful spiritual beings. There, the shaman communes with these spirit guides for healing or information. This healing can be for the shaman himself, for a client, or for a community of humans and/or nature.

Soul retrieval and extraction is one technique or process within shamanic healing. Soul retrieval and extraction is based in the concept that everyone has a certain amount of vital energy, or soul, that they are born with and should retain throughout life. However, because of traumatic events such as illness, accidents, violence, loss of a loved one, etc., a person can lose parts of this vital energy. The soul can fragment, and parts will get lost or shut down. This is called soul loss.

When this happens, the shaman can go into a trance state and travel in the spirit realm to find the lost soul parts. She can then return these soul parts to the client through energy work. This is called a soul retrieval. The “flip side” of soul retrieval is extraction. This occurs when negative energy attaches to a client. Sometimes the energy is just a general negativity; sometimes it’s an actual soul part of another person, which has attached itself to the client. In this case, the shaman removes the negative energy.


Survey Method


The survey has only one question: for the client to rate his or her experience among four choices. I designed the wording of the survey based on the most common reactions of clients. The same survey was given to every client. I began the survey from the beginning of my practice, starting in 1995 and going through 2002.

Almost all of the clients received a regular ninety-minute session. A few clients received thirty-minute “mini-sessions.” I did not include most of the mini-sessions because I often do not keep in touch with the people who receive mini-session as closely as I do with clients who receive full sessions.

This survey is only for my soul retrieval and extraction sessions. I did not survey clients for whom I have conducted other types of sessions, such as healing story, body movement repatterning or self-expressive arts. Some clients I have seen for more than one soul retrieval and extraction session, but I only had each client answer the survey once. Almost always, clients that had more than one session answered the survey based on their first session.

A total of 175 clients (N=175) were asked to complete the survey. There were 119 responses, or 68% of those asked. I estimate that, if all the sessions I’ve done from

1995 – 2002 were counted, including all the mini-session and repeat clients, I have performed at least 350 soul retrieval and extraction sessions. So, this survey represents approximately 50% of the total number of these sessions I have performed.

The clients are all adults, ranging from 21 to 85 years of age. Most clients are between 30 – 60 years old. Of the175 clients, 78 % are women and 22 % are men.


A variety of methods were used to gather the results. Most often, I conducted the survey by interviewing the clients myself by phone. I would read them the choices and they would tell me which rating number they felt best described their experience. For clients from 2001 – 2002, I sent out an email survey to those clients with email, and also sent the survey by postal mail to those clients who only have postal mail. From these two groups, I received answers by email or postal mail.

So that the survey results I am sharing would be anonymous, I removed the names of the clients from the enclosed tabulation, and identified them only by the dates of the sessions.

The five Anonymous responses were from the postal mail, since I did not ask that respondents give their names. This means that five of the clients listed as having “no response” in the dated list did respond anonymously.

The time period between receiving the healing session and answering the survey varied widely. Some clients I interviewed as soon as two days after the session. With other clients, there were many months in between the session and answering the survey.



The results of the survey are as follows:


15% of clients reported dramatic results: the problem they came to solve was resolved overnight.

75% reported good results: they saw some beneficial results such as feeling more energized or more calm, less depressed, better able to make decisions or having some helpful insight.

8% reported that they couldn’t tell if there was an effect; they were using several modalities to change their situation, and can’t tell which one created the change.

2% reported seeing no effect from the session.


In this survey, 90% of the clients report dramatic or good results from their soul retrieval and extraction session, while 8% are unsure of the results, and only 2% feel the session was ineffective. This favorable response given by the great majority of clients supports the hypothesis that I am successful as a practitioner of soul retrieval and extraction healing.

Here it is important to note that because many of the responses were given in personal interviews with me, the practitioner, the results may be more favorable than if the entire survey was conducted anonymously. However, even taking this fact into consideration and possibly lowering the percentage in the “dramatic” or “good” categories, it can be safely assumed that the majority of clients would still be in these categories.


We can extrapolate this from the five responses that came in anonymously. Out of these five, one was in the “dramatic” category, three were in the “good” category and one was in the “not sure” category. So the results of the anonymous responses are:

20% of clients reported dramatic results: the problem they came to solve was resolved overnight.

60% reported good results: they saw some beneficial results such as feeling more energized or more calm, less depressed, better able to make decisions or having some helpful insight.

20% reported that they couldn’t tell if there was an effect; they were using several modalities to change their situation, and can’t tell which one created the change.

0% reported seeing no effect from the session.

Thus in the small sample of anonymous responses, 80% (a vast majority) report excellent or good results, while 20% are unsure of the results, and no respondent felt the session was ineffective.

Future Inquiry

The data in the Client Survey can be further analyzed for several factors. Were there certain time periods during which clients report better results? For example, did more clients in 2002 report dramatic results compared to clients in 1996? Another factor is gender: are there differences in the ratings men and women gave the sessions?

In addition to the quantitative portion of the survey, I collected narrative accounts of results from clients. These comments were collected in the same variety of ways as the Client Survey: through phone interviews I conducted with the clients, email and postal mail. Data from these narratives can be analyzed in the future as well.




Please indicate the number of the phrase that best describes the results of your shamanic healing session with Joan Forest Mage. (Your session may have included soul retrieval, power animal retrieval or extraction.)

Note: the wording of this survey is based on typical reactions from clients. Please feel free to comment if you feel your experience was different.

1 = Dramatic results; the problem I came to heal was solved overnight.


2 = Good results; saw beneficial results I attribute to the journey such as feeling more peaceful, more energized, having a greater sense of well-being, more able to take action, got some helpful insight from the journey, etc.


3 = Can’t tell if there were results specifically from the shamanic healing; I was using several modalities to change my problem and can’t tell how much the journey contributed to the improvement I have experienced.


4 = Felt no effect.





My experience can best be described as number _______.

Other (please comment):





Client Comments


I had fibromyalgia for ten years, and during that time I would miss work at least five days out of every month. After my soul retrieval, I immediately felt much less pain! Before, I used to miss at least five days of work a month. Now it's down to one day a month. I can even exercise more.


I went home after my soul retrieval and opened my closet. I said to myself, "Why am I dressing like Barbara Bush [conservative, matronly]?" I've changed to a more youthful, stylish wardrobe and I feel like myself again.

Also, I had fibromyalgia, and now the pain is much less. I don't miss work as often.


This session got me back to myself and my center. I feel grounded. It opened me up! Things shifted and continue to shift due to the session. This is wonderful and valuable work.


I had the soul retrieval due to problems I was having with my boyfriend. I hadn't communicated with him for weeks. After the session, something shifted for me and I was able to sit down and write him an honest letter and mail it off. We were able to dialogue about our differences and come to a better closure.


I had insomnia for eight years. The day after my soul retrieval, I finally got a good night's rest. I had broken up with my boyfriend several months before the soul retrieval, but couldn't get him off my mind. Since the soul retrieval, I've stopped obsessing about him.


I never realized how tense I was till after my soul retrieval! Now I feel a profound sense of peace, and that I trust people once again.


Two days after soul retrieval: I've had good memories of my father for the first time in years, things I had forgotten. My father came to me in a dream for the first time in ten years.



Since the soul retrieval, I find it easier to make decisions. I'm more decisive and not as worried. I feel more mellow. I did the soul retrieval because I felt a need to start afresh in my life, and it's helping me do this. It was great being able to express myself to Joan, I felt I could talk to her about things I'm not able to with a lot of people.


I feel genuinely happy, like a little girl again. My parents, the doctor I worked for and several friends all said, "Gee, you look different than two weeks ago. You look happier. You're glowing." Another friend, Diane, said, "A veil of darkness is gone from your eyes. Your eyes have a crystal in them." In a recurring dream I had seen a four sided crystal and I walked into it. During Reiki treatments in the past, Diane felt that I had a light which was trying to come through but it couldn't come through the darkness, and now it seems to have emerged.

My whole emotional state is great! I feel joyous. Better than since I've been a child. My cravings for alcohol have gone away, and I've had a drinking and substance abuse problem for ten years. I feel like I got over a huge hump in healing from my alcohol addiction.

I was going to take a semester off school due to feeling too stressed, but now I don't feel I need to. Each day seems to get better.


I had some kind of lumps/cysts all over my body under my skin. After the soul retrieval, in which Joan extracted what looked to her like bone spurs, the lumps were gone. I feel great joy and happiness that I haven't for years. Ever since I gave my baby son up for adoption thirty years ago, I have felt a deep sadness. Now this sadness is gone. It's nice to feel joy again. I also stopped eating junk food. I feel whole.

The day I had the soul retrieval, I got the urge to start cleaning my whole house. I haven't cleaned my refrigerator for years, but now it's sparkling! I started singing while washing dishes, and felt that there was the spirit of a Native American girl outside. There's color in my cheeks for the first time in years. The night of the soul retrieval I slept well for the first time in years. When I sang, it was a little lullaby comforting and welcoming the returned soul parts. I could never get excited about anything. Now I do!


I am divorced and my children, now teenagers, do not live with me. For years I have always become depressed on their birthdays. This is the first year I have not had this reaction! I feel there has been a closure to this conflict.


I've had more get-up-and-go energy, not wanting to just sit around after meals and make small talk. In journaling, I got a message of "live for today," which was good.


I can feel the energetic changes. The day after the soul retrieval I was able to finish some legal work that I had been avoiding. I'm taking fewer tranquilizers. I was able to let go of my obsession with my old house. I'm much more patient, which is a huge accomplishment!


Day of soul retrieval: I feel very weepy. A happy, grateful weepy. I am an actress, and 8 years ago I had bronchitis and my voice changed, it became very shallow. I couldn't reach depths. Right now, after the soul retrieval, my voice is deeper.

Two days after soul retrieval: My power animal has brought me a sense of freedom, of being comfortable with allowing circumstances to be as they are without having to control them.

My voice has remained deep. I can tell it's different than before.


Two days after the soul retrieval, my husband and I got in an argument, and I felt like the frightened little girl I used be to when my grandmother would yell at me: that I would rather have someone hit me than being mean to me. I haven't been in touch with these feelings in years. Over the years I've become callous to abuse, but suddenly I'm sensitive again. So this little girl soul part is definitely back!

I also have had happy feelings. I find myself humming - I haven't hummed in a long time. These changes may seem little, but they're big to me. I have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. But after the soul retrieval, I felt energetic, went to work and cleaned the garage, and I want to paint the house.


You saw the spirit guide I see often, a beautiful lady with a peacock colored gown.


I'm feeling more peaceful. Especially in traffic! My power animal gave me peace, inner strength and confidence.


For the first few days after soul retrieval, I was very depressed due to the memories coming back from my childhood. I also had an episode of feeling and acting like an infant, drooling and rolling on the floor.


2 days after soul retrieval: I know there's a difference I can sense it. I feel lighter. My thinking seems like it will be different. I have a tremendous heaviness in my shoulders, but my lungs feel clearer (I've had asthma for years.)

4 days after soul retrieval: I did remember something that happened in high school when people laughed at me and didn't trust me, just like you described. The heaviness in my shoulders is gone, the energy readjusted. I feel these energy shifts will continue for a while.


People tell me I seem lighter in spirit. I haven't been crying about my ex-boyfriend the way I did before. I notice subtle changes. I'm visiting my family and friends for the holidays and I'm interested to see if they notice any changes in me since the soul retrieval.


The first two days after the soul retrieval, I felt very tired and wanted to sleep. Now I have more energy than I've had in ten years. Everything around me seems more vibrant. Even my dreams are more vivid, and I had a lucid dream where I was conscious that I was dreaming. Also, my sister had received a soul part back. The day after the soul retrieval I saw her and she had a big smile and said hi in a friendlier way than she has in a long time.


I feel more confident. I speak more easily without stammering. I don't have as many depressed thoughts. My mind used to dwell on thoughts of bad things that happened in my past; suddenly, this "replaying" has stopped. I feel more whole. I notice things around me more, the five year old soul part is very observant.


I feel less fear and more calmness in my life, especially about sexual relationships, which have been an issue with me for many years.


It used to bother me if people criticized me or tried to tell me what to do. Now I think for myself and make my own decisions. I don't worry what other people think. Ever since I broke up with my boyfriend six months ago, I used to have this morbid scene running through my mind that a gun was in my mouth and I pulled the trigger. Not only does this scene not happen spontaneously, I can't even get myself to think of it when I try. The need is gone. I've gone to psychologists in the past, and they helped me feel better during the actual session, but I didn't feel any long-term transformation. This work is true transformation!


I feel more grounded and centered. It sounds like a cliche, but I feel more whole. One of my soul parts that came back had been with my father. When I came home from the soul retrieval, I took down a picture of my Dad I had on my wall for a long time. This is to remind myself to focus on myself. I feel less frantic about a relationship that I've been trying to develop with a male friend of mine. I'm not worrying about trying to get his attention. I feel more at peace. I'm slowing my life down to a more reasonable, relaxed pace.


I feel fuller and more complete, more collectively "together". I feel brighter. Before the soul retrieval, happiness manifested for me in a kind of angelic, ungrounded sense. Now, I can feel happy and grounded at the same time. I've been able to get focused about my next step in life.


I feel calmer and more productive. I had finished all the course work for my doctorate in political philosophy, but every time I started to write my dissertation I was overcome by negative messages in my mind saying my ideas were stupid and I shouldn't bother to write them. The day after the soul retrieval, I finally began writing my dissertation! I'm enjoying writing, my "inner critic" is gone.

16 (2nd session)

I feel light. I don't have as much fear. I had also been feeling uncontrolled, chaotic anger about something in my life when I came for the soul retrieval. For days I had been physically shaking and throwing things around my house because of this anger. Since the soul retrieval, the anger feels contained and manageable. I was also having tremendous pain in my neck and shoulders, which is where I hold my tension. Now it's almost gone.

I had been obsessing about my boyfriend, who I had broken up with. Now I'm not as devastated. I was actually able to tell my boyfriend I was angry with him; I could finally be candid about my feelings. Before, I was feeling that I had to run away from him and couldn't talk to him.

Also, my mother told me she wanted to come and see the theater production I'm presenting. This is the first time she's been so supportive! She's willing to make the plane trip from Chicago to Florida to see it. [Note: we had retrieved a soul part for Denise's mother.]


I feel wonderful! I feel calm and relaxed, I'm not anxious the way I was. I've been sleeping well at night.


I feel lighter. My power animal gives me the feeling of a light "buzz", like things aren't so heavy anymore. It's as though a bag full of water has been emptied, the pressure has been relieved. I feel more at ease and at peace.


I'm feeling lighter, clearer and more directed. I'm not obsessing the way I was before. I'm stronger and handling stress in my life better. I've also noticed increased psychic ability. I'm more in tune with my body and my instincts. My relationships with my boss has improved, and I've been meeting interesting people. I'm glad I met you, you've really encouraged me!


I'm feeling better. I feel more complete. I can remember my dreams better, and they're giving me insights. I began confirming several things that you saw.


I feel more calm. The session was great! I had a headache when I came in to the session and it was gone by the end. I was very impressed by how clearly you saw a lot of incidents that have happened in my life - you have authentic psychic gifts.


I'm feeling more relaxed, which is a big change for me as I've been nervous and jumpy for a long time. I feel more "full", for want of a better word - more present.


I felt very emotional right after the soul retrieval. Some energy had definitely shifted. The next day, I felt more strong and stable energetically and emotionally than I had in a while.


I felt energized and balanced. There was a part of me that was healed.


The soul retrieval brought a new sense of focus and clear thinking. It definitely stimulated my mind. I've always been a creative person, but after the session my mind was exploding with creative ideas in a way I haven't experienced in a long time. The healing brought a grounded feeling to soul and body.


My physical energy has improved. There had been a disconnection of energy form my legs; now it has re-connected. I'm opening up to people more. I was able to resolve a major conflict that I had with someone.

106 I realized that I had been living in fear and anger. I'm able to let go of anger instead of holding on to it. I feel that I've been able to put things into a better perspective. A weight has been taken off me. I'm more aware of myself. After several surgeries, I became separated from my body. Now I feel greater body awareness, I feel my physical body more present. I especially connected to the muscles of my stomach. The things Joan said helped me confirm some things I had suspected but wasn't sure about, things I thought I had only imagined.


I have an overwhelming sense of peace. I’m in my own skin. I’m not nervous or anxious the way I was before. Everything is back inside of me.


I have hope now. I was asking the universe for help, and I feel it now. The little girl part feels immediate.

My memory is better. I had a passing thought of a childhood incident that I remembered. The power animals are fun! I have a sense of well-being that I haven’t had in a long time.

I’m feeling an urgency to communicate better. I remember little snatches of dreams; I’m sleeping and dreaming better.


I can’t remember when I’ve felt this good. I mean this seriously. I feel light. It hit me the day after the soul retrieval., this inexplicable joy. The day after that, I felt so energized and light it was overwhelming. I don’t know how else to put it. I could breathe and walk and move lightly – it was a feeling I remember having before, during a very good time in my life, as though a weight had been lifted off me….I really do believe you breathed some spirit into me.


I feel more grounded. I am also feeling more energized, too.


I do feel different as a result of the soul retrieval. I continue to integrate each day and feel a real difference in my relationship with others. I've also made some changes in my life as a result of the
session with you.

1. I decided to discontinue medication (with the knowledge
and support of my psychiatrist).

2. I have been better able to cope with the death of my
father...I don't feel as clingy to the memory.

Additionally, I recognize and have discovered a whole new
way of looking at healing


So much has opened up!


I feel more peaceful.



The healing helped me to center myself and get in touch with a lot of my inner "workings". It also helped me get grounded in my own healing work.


The experience was very specifically beneficial; still processing results. Look forward to working with practitioner at some later date to learn more about process.


I was having very serious mental health issues at the time of my soul retrieval, and the retrieval stirred them up for me even more. This may have been a good thing, but I’m still feeling too raw to make that assessment. I did feel that the soul retrieval showed me pieces of myself that I need to integrate, but I don’t feel I have integrated them yet.





I have a sense of empowerment.

I feel resistance about doing the 28-day cycle (a full lunar cycle) [of integration]. However I am doing it. It is an interesting and valuable process. The raven will help me see what I have to do and help me remember.



I think you do wonderful work. I will be back for further sessions.






I enjoyed the opportunity to work with you and I am excited for our upcoming session.   I have been running around, but I have taken some time to ground and meditate on the messages I received.  I seem to be experiencing waves of emotions and thoughts, which are a part of the process.  I look forward for the opportunity to learn more tools for exploring my soul parts and totem animals for a deeper understanding. Take care and I hope you have an incredible week...I'm sure that it will be filled with many emotions.


I had had some prior soul-retrieval done by another pair of shamans in Florida, and while much of what they said felt accurate, I felt they were over-zealous in their efforts, and actually 'cut' a little TOO much - sort of like cutting a rose bush off at the ground, rather than 'pruning' it.

However, I did feel that they were correct when they stated that I had lost more than "a few" soul-fragments (approximately 12, in fact...) during a near-death experience in 1994, as well as picking UP some fragments of a dear friend/lover who had died a few years later, and that it would require a second effort to retrieve the remaining missing fragments - there was too much to accomplish in one journey. I also knew that I did NOT want that process to be completed by them, as they seemed 'heavy handed.'

My experiences with you, Joan, were delightful, and brought a definite sense of closure - I felt 'restored', but without the traumatic sense of upheaval the other process had caused.




104 (2nd session)

There were several areas worked on. Some of the results were a dramatic elimination of the conflict, problem and in some instances pain. And some of the aspects like the power animal brought some immediate results and some longer term.  Also the healings actually revealed the source and/or cause of conflict that I was actually not self aware enough of to resolve. Once revealed by the soul retrieval work I remembered and knew occurrences that were parts of conflict causing unease and restriction.  I was particularly surprised by the past life soul retrieval that has since given me a whole new way of dealing with my birth and relation to family and events. Very empowering, invigorating, and the healings have brought on greater ease in life. Thank You. Over all great results.



I thought the experience was wonderful! I felt so invigorated and confident. I have tried conventional therapy but find that this experience, along with some past life regression I have done and other "energy" work, have made the most difference in my life. I have been able to reclaim parts of me that were lost, renew them and move forward through what had become a cloud of emotion, attachment and illness. I wish more people in our society would give themselves the opportunity to have this kind of experience. I especially wish criminals and the severely mentally ill would have access. Given all the traditional religious consultation that is offered especially in jails and so consistently fails to truly help people - it’s unfortunate, this option isn't offered.


I feel lots of good energy and clarity.



My stomach was in knots for two years. When you pulled out the energy of the woman, the knots were gone! I’m talking to my soul parts and getting information.



In Navajo, usually two members of the tribe participate in the cure of a sick person, a singer or medicine man and a diviner. In Navajo, there is no general word for diviner, but generally it means “that which he knows”. Divining, common to most cultures, is the skill of gaining inner knowledge or wisdom beyond the five senses. Those who have this ability are regarded as practitioners of prophecy: shamanic soul retrieval is a lot like this.


I requested a soul retrieval because I had a “knowing” that I had some energy blockages but didn’t know what caused them or why. I needed the help of soul retrieval to locate and release them. Soon after my soul retrieval I noticed people at work responding to me more positively, as if some sort of invisible shield or bubble was removed. In time I have been able to live more fully and in the present. The burdens of my past are lighter. I feel more at the cause of my life, rather than at the effect of what happens to me. It’s obvious to me that I did have an energy blockage and it was released. I still had to do the spiritual, emotional and mental work of reflection to heal, but I needed the energy work of soul retrieval to provide the catalyst toward my journey toward “wholeness.”



I feel that your work for me helped to trigger other events and experiences that helped to facilitate my forward movement, along with other ways I was working.



I felt excellent! The singing voice inside me changed for a while (better). I was able to relate to Lion Power Animal!



94 (2nd session)

I have had several sessions with Joan. Some have provided me with new information; some have given me insight into past experiences that I didn’t know affected me to such an extent; some confirmed experiences with an uncanny accuracy.



I got some good insights from the journey. I feel motivated psychologically to integrate the soul parts. I had had pain in my shoulder for a long time, and you mentioned incidents of past trauma that had caused this pain. Since the soul retrieval, my shoulder has been physically unlocking, and also the emotions from those incidents have been releasing.


Anonymous 2

I felt more solid following my soul retrieval. Another way to describe the sense of it was that I felt there was more of me and I felt more grounded.


Anonymous 3

The session did not heal me. The grasp my ex-husband has on my life is still there, but diminishing. Whatever reason, past life, abusive relationship cycle, letting go – this man had a terrible and very abusive hold on my consciousness. Your session made me aware. I learned new aspects of my behavior with others. I am still learning to cope, like an alcoholic, as to the meaning of this.


I have always experienced very good if not dramatic results from my shamanic healing sessions with you.  The only reason I did not select #1 is because the extent of my spiritual problems with soul loss and recovery are so complex and of such great magnitude that there is no way that I could claim the problem was solved overnight.  It has been two years since I embarked on this dimension of my healing journey and, despite significant progress, I still see many more years of work ahead of me.

However, I want to add for your readers that the practice of soul retrieval and extraction are real.  I feel it is unfortunate that I have to make this statement on behalf of your work, because by doing so I am testifying to the narrow perception of the Self in the modern world.  People do not understand that we exist on many levels and on many planes, and have done so in many times and spaces.  Therefore, we can lose various parts of ourselves not only in this life, but may have also lost parts of ourselves due to trauma in other lives.

My own conception of the Self was somewhat like this until my own spiritual crises began.  I was lulled by the thinking that the traumas our souls face in life are made "all better" in some perfect heaven after death.  Death, I thought, restored wholeness to us.  While I've understood that our karma follows us from past lives, I had no idea that the fragmentation and shattering of our own souls follows us beyond the graves.  I did not understand this until other parts of my Soul -- different personalities from past lives -- returned to me of their own accord and began physically and psychically integrating themselves into my present reality.  (The primary personalities who have come back are that of an extraordinarily angry Afro-Cuban slave woman named Omo who was beaten and raped her entire life who split off due to the trauma of her experience; and a gay man named Tom who was brutally molested as a child and who lived a life of great pain, confusion and sexual perversion [and who, I believe, lived contemporaneous to my own life.  I think this is the case because when I see in meditation the scenes of his trauma, they appear very modern.  I think this soul part was able to live simultaneously to my life because, after all, he was from a part that was already split off from my own soul]).  Finally, behind these traumatized and sexually abused soul parts is an ancient soul who grievously (and I mean grievously) harmed and abused many other beings.  It is because of the awful seeds this ancient personality sowed that my subsequent lives reaped such soul-searing suffering.

While at first I was frightened (and often still am) with the magnitude of what I have to face up to and heal, I have come to accept that it is a blessing, in this life, to be able to engage in the work of healing and redeeming my own soul.  You have been an enormous help to me in this process.  Your journeys have brought back many more parts of myself than I ever knew were missing, and your insights have helped to fill in many blanks regarding those past times and places that I could not remember.  I was particularly pleased when, during our last mini-session, you and your guides were able to not only retrieve a part of myself which I knew to be trapped in a temple in Egypt, but you were also able to free the other soul parts that were trapped there as well.  That made my heart exceedingly glad!

On a larger note, I think your work is truly needed at this time in the world.  I think there is a great healing going on with our Mother Earth, and she is throwing off a lot of the old, dark and heavy energy her children anchored here over many thousands of years.  We each individually are working through that process of getting rid of that stuff through healing our own souls.   I think that this is in preparation for a great "harvest" that it is to come -- be it the ascension of many souls, or the return of the Christ, the changing of the ages, the ending of larger cosmic cycles, etc.  We cannot do this work without the shamans who can help restore us to our wholeness, and extract from us the unhelpful energies which are holding back the evolution of our souls and our planet.  I count it a great blessing to be able to work with you at this time, and thank you for having giving yourself over to such important but as yet little understood work.


169 (a series of emails)

August 31, 2002

Here is a follow up to you question for DePaul University and did you do good.  Yes, you did.   Some of the stuff had some impact about two days after that were a bit anxiety producing.   Nothing bad nor unexpected but I knew that if you did your work there would probably be some time to integrate what happened.


Of the various aspect that you brought back, two were easiest to communicate with.  The Boy with Treasure and Man with Girlfriend.


There is like a retelling of the story of my life here.   The Boy with Treasure for a long time I thought it was the art and creativity.  It is that in part but something more going on there in what mom and dad accomplished.  It was a place where I lost a lot of direction to life.  That is where my teenage depression started.   There has been a lot of dialogue with him about mom and dad.


Man with Girlfriend is a lot to deal with in the package.  (Don't tell him that.)  He is very cynical and very wounded.  I'm kind of wondering why he came back.  The dialogues with him have told me he was in and out of my life for short stop overs.  There was a place where I went to counseling and it was at the time when I was with the woman Beverly of seven years ago.   This is an interesting piece of dialogue that popped up:

Man with Girl Friend: Yes... I'm 23 but a very old 23 three.   I understand you can update my patterning.


Me: It is not like you are a pattern.  You are a part of a whole soul part.  You are piece of me and my spirit.  So yes, I can do that but I need just a bit of time to sort out all this stuff with you. [I thought about how he might have been the one who attracted me to Beverly.]


Man with Girl Friend:  No, I wasn't one who "came up" [surfaced] as you call it with regard to Chris and Beverly.   They were both in so much pain and I didn't want to be around them.   When Carla [the NLP councilor] summoned me in about your motives (in regard) to Beverly [whether I was acting out my stuff with Marianne the girl from high school with her] that is when I showed up.  I showed up to say good-bye to your father when he was dying.  (IMAGE OF ME CRYING.)  I loved that man.


Me: So you haven't been around?


Man with Girl Friend:  At different times but not really.


Me: Like when.


Man with Girl Friend: When your mom in and you wrote the poem in Clifton the night of her heart attack...  Your mother was scared [about life] however, for the most part.   She was (also) a scary bitch.


Me: Is this what the problem with Jamie [my sister] is about?


Man with Girl Friend: Yes, lots of emotions. You need to pray.


Me: I will.


But in my understanding of him is that he was a wounded romantic but I don't know if I have much wisdom to impart to him about that.   Part of the BIG depression that occurred about 19 or 20 involved Marianne.  I realized that I gave up on relationships in general because I didn't understand them.   Over the years, I've made a joke of it with the idea that the computer chip for relationships was missing.  What I understood or dreamed about in relationship is or was very much missing.


He is a tough character though.  Integration will take a bit of time.


The other ones have been a bit harder to talk to.  One is communicating with me pretty nonverbal.  I see wind blowing through trees almost in astonishment that life and the world is full of movement.   The rain drops might be one of the others.  I don't know.   I was at the restaurant I got on Thursday, there was a moment of astonishment or sense of not knowing that place.


So things are moving along.   There seems to be a retelling of my history.  I was surprised that the Bev stuff was one of the pieces should have showed up but then it hit me that a lot of work and time went into integration of that.


PS. Could my eagle be a redtail hawk?  (Just got a very soft NO!)  LOL



Sept 7 2002

Not a lot to report this week which maybe a lot to report. Things are starting to get back to normal on a number of levels. However, I noticed that we're using the pronoun "we" instead of "I" at the moment.

There seems to be more energy now and more confidence in my movement. That is very nice. The only problem I had was one of them was a bit effeminate and when I started humming Judy Garland tunes in my car, I was thinking boy am I in trouble... not that there is anything wrong with Judy Garland tunes. My lesbian friend Bobbye said, "Don't worry, you're fine. One can just like Judy Garland."

Little pictures and images come up from time to time. I don't know if you precog stuff, but I did manage to have have bike accident and manage to get a road rash on my "right" leg - kind of like you described. I told that part there were other ways to get attention.

I'm starting to feel a lot better. Thank you. I worked with my energy worker and she is helping me clear some of the heaviness in regard to my mom and dad and my missing treasure you returned. That is a shift in that direction. I'm very pleased.


Sept 16

I can do math in my head now. So well that I get the answer without thinking that I do it on paper to discover that it was right. Also,when people spell thing out aloud to me, I can generate the word now in my head. Could do that before. The strangest is this ability to wake up in the morning early now. At 5:30 or 6:00 I can get up wide awake
without a lot of transition. It gives me an hour to read, write or create in the morning.

Thanks. :-)

Now if I could find the part to handle my missing suffixes and noun-verb agreement.


Sept 28

One of the pieces you brought back was called boy with an accident.   That one was strange.  I had no recall of what you were talking about and seemed pretty out there.  However, yesterday after work I had to get X-Rays for the bike injury.  I flashed into a time when I was taken to the hospitals to have X-Rays and I think they were for my head.  It was clear in the image of the nurse, the dark room, and the light (window) with the crosshairs.  Things haven't changed that much in forty years for X-Rays.


I'm not sure what happened but it was pretty significant to have to take me to the hospital.   Either that kid hit me pretty bad or it was the door business.  Wish dear old mom was here to fill in the blanks. So you got that one on the nose.


Oct 18


I'm doing VERY well, thank you. The changes have been coming gradually

in a workable way. I compare prior to seeing you and after, there is a marked difference in confidence and well being. I don't feel fragmented or if something is missing but I didn't know what it is.

The Boy with Treasure seems to be an important piece. I thought it was the art and creativity (and it is in part) but it seems to be something like a clearness or unfettered vision (from the heart) and a more masculine strength to me. (Being comfortable with the masculine?) Some of the feelings I don't have words for or know what they are about but

they generally positive. People tell me my energy is more together and grounded.

Thanks for everything. I will see you again I'm sure to do more work.

October 20

I am so much happier since doing the work with you. People are telling me that my energy is better, I'm more grounded and more "masculine" though you are aware of some of the confusion there a few weeks after.


One of my big concerns was whether some of the aspects of a former relationship was still haunting me in someway.  I found out that a lot of those issues were cleared.  I also found out that there were other "parts" that has been missing from other places that I suspected but could not affirm otherwise.  There were things that were there that were taken out.  That gave me some new perspective and lifted some of the anxiety I had had about those situation.  Also, while not everything was solved overnight - some things just aren't - but it has set events in motion toward further healing and reconsideration.


There has been a change in the way that I am carrying myself.  There seems to be more strength of character in difficult situations... well... in a lot of different situations.  I'm in the process of "redoing" the relationships with my siblings that has been a bit difficult but necessary.  There is a much reconsideration in regard to what relationships meant and should mean.  That was a stuck place that seems to be loosening up.  Fear anxiety and need to be the one to take care of people or situations has dropped off pretty quickly.  I'm passing over responsibility to others cleanly without a lot of guilt, shame or anxiety.  That's pretty neat because I always felt that I needed to "save" others or the situation, etc.  That is no longer the case.  I don't know how that fits in with the work exactly but it started shifting at that time.