Soul Retrieval

Soul Retrieval is a process where the shaman journeys to the underworld to see the event that sparked the soul contract, destroys that contract, attends to a couple of tasks, and retrieves parts of our soul that were left behind. An important detail to remember is that the story of the event should be let go of and forgotten, so we don’t cling to that injury and continue to meet the conditions of the contract.

Those tangles are events in our lives (current or past) where part of our energetic body gets left behind. A lot of Soul Retrievals lead to children who have no say in what happens to them. They can only learn from the experience, and remember it for next time, if there is one. But a part of us is left behind, a beneficial part of us that left the event in order to survive.

Look at Soso, here. She’s very serious, has very careful ways of doing things, doesn’t socialize, and likes her wine. In her soul retrieval, the shaman is shown a girl representing a midieval version of Soso and her best friend running and playing tag. Little does Soso know, her friend has a heart condition, so while dodging around a bush, suddenly the girl stumbles and falls. The exertion had been too much, and the friend’s heart  gave out, and she was dead. Soso believes that she killed her friend, and said “when I play, my best friend dies, so I will never play again!” and enacted the sacred contract.

The soul part that left Soso was the part of her that felt safe laughing and having fun. She left because she felt unsafe with Soso, who kills her friends. That soul part must feel safe with Soso to decide to come back. If Soso stays home and drinks wine alone, the soul part isn’t safe, or even welcome, right? Who is going to laugh and play when there is the deep, abiding sense of guilt  and impending doom that Soso feels when she is happy and playful? So that soul part must want to rejoin us, also. It must feel safe and protected from that event ever happening again.  We must be willing to do the work to change, in other words. With the fun playfulness back in her heart, and an understanding of why it happened– that it was not a pattern, just a moment in time–Soso is free to feel hope and joy again, rather than fear and dread.

Soul Retrieval can be a very powerful healing experience. Things can shift suddenly, and long-standing problems can vanish as if they never existed. That happens a lot. Other times it takes longer to feel the relief. Sometimes issues are caused by several things, and each of those parts should be healed, or at least the major contributors, for the results to be noticeable among the rest of the tangles. Or maybe we aren’t quite ready to deal with that issue, and we stay shallow in our explanations. We want to heal our procrastination, not the anger that causes it. The process still works, it just takes longer and is less dramatic, if we aren’t really ready. The more we want relief from whatever it is that has us bound up, the deeper we are willing to go. Soul Retrieval can change everything, and it will change something.


Shamanism is, among other things, an understanding of energy and how it flows, what keeps it from flowing, and what to do to reclaim lost and dysfunctional energy.



Let’s imagine ourselves bopping along with the moments extruding behind as a line representing the wake we leave in this life. Lets step away from our bodies and watch ourselves, like cartoons, going through our days, leaving that line or thread behind us as we go, as if we were leaving twine to find our way back. In the thread we leave behind us, we can see the story of our life. We can see tangles–moments, events, or traumas we were faced with in which we got lost for a time, our life thread becoming tangled, our minds going over the event again and again, or avoiding thinking about it altogether. Maybe it was a sibling jumping out at us from behind the snack food aisle, which caused us to scream then laugh, releasing that fear and leaving the thread fuzzed but uncluttered. Maybe it was an unkind and judgemental comment someone made about something we can’t help, triggering the fear that we are helplessly flawed, sparking a simple but strangling knot. Maybe it was a fundamental loss, leaving us with that Root Chakra feeling of Abandonment. That tangle is an intense one that causes some of us to be lost forever, and others to believe we have only ourselves, and that we must protect ourselves from relationships, so it won’t ever happen again. Maybe it was a physical threat that left us with a relentless feeling of fear, one where we trust no one, we keep our backs to the wall, and we perform rituals to protect ourselves. Maybe it was a heartbreaking betrayal, and we’ve been left with a Sacral Chakra inability to trust, keeping ourselves hidden behind the dense, tall thicket of briars that that kind of tangle forms. Maybe it was a familial pattern of angry silence caused for us by an ancestor: a soul contract made by a foreparent, or an earlier life of our own, that manifests the same issue in every generation, until someone seeks an energy healer to help heal the energy and take down the thorny barrier.

All of these tangles, and more, can be healed.

A Shaman 1)examines our energetic field, helps us focus on the issue or pattern that is troubling us the most and release it, 2)clears our energy fields of the bad feelings– those false detours that siphon our energy into The Tangles,– 3)clears our chakras of the sludge and crud of life that slows down our energy, and 4)cleans up the energetic slings and arrows that we  accumulate during our lives (current and past ones), because of that pattern. The shaman will also 5)journey to find the soul contract that started the issue, and destroy it, removing the tangle so our energy won’t get bound up in it anymore, freeing it flow to the thread that brings it back to us.