A Selection of Daily Spiritual Practices

by Mar 6, 2023

A Note from Jaime Meyer, SSP Board President:

Every spiritual path requires some kind of disciplined, regular practice. The practice may be enjoyable and beautiful, and that is why we do it. It may be difficult to summon the discipline to do it, and that is why we do it. But consistency and regularity are crucial. Why?  Because from a shamanic view, regular practice builds our inner power. It helps us tame the capricious ego and center ourselves on Spirit; it helps us summon humility, and helps us remember beauty. We asked a few shamanic practitioners to share their daily practice. Their responses are below. 

Jane  Burns
Jane has been practicing and teaching shamanism for over 20 years, studying and specializing in the Celtic tradition. Her book, Up a Tree, a shamanic novel and handbook, is available on Amazon.  www.journeystothesoul.com.

I call this practice nature’s mirror

I begin this exercise by either stepping outside, taking a walk, or even gazing out my window at nature. I deeply observe the nature beings around me for a moment or two, noting which one is drawing my attention the most. It might be the sun, the snow, a cloud, a crow, a tree, or even the wind.

I greet this nature being and introduce myself.  I say what it is I observe or admire about it–its grace, its power, its industry, etc.  Then, I ask the nature being: what do you see when you look at me?

I keep a journal of the responses I receive.  Nature sees only our true self.  It will see strength and beauty in us that we might not be acknowledging.

If nature’s response reflects something I want to change about myself–say, for instance, a sadness or an inflexibility–I ask the nature being how I can heal by behaving more like it does. Then, I thank it, and practice the advice.

Joan  Levergood
Joan is a shamanic practitioner working with clients in Chicago and online internationally. Joan is a Society for Shamanic Practice, Shamanism Without Borders Leadership group member, and joined their Board of Directors in 2021. She hosts bi-monthly online and hybrid Shamanic Journey Circles and an annual Celtic Wild Hunt in Chicago with highly accomplished Live Improvising Musicians.

My daily practice likely is much like many of us. I burn a little sage, get quiet and ask my guides and helping spirits to be with me and help me during my day. I ask for protection from my Angelic Ancestors. I also ask that guides, angels, and helping spirits be present for all the beings I come in contact with during my day.

Nita Renfrew
Nita is an urban shamanic practitioner living in New York City and is on the editorial board of the SSP’s Journal of Shamanic Practice.

I spend about twenty minutes or so every day, offering nourishment to a flock of Pigeons and a flock of Sparrows, and a few Squirrels, who wait for me in front of my building. I walk with them to Central Park, which is a few doors away, with some of them piling up along the way on a bag of sunflower seeds that I hold over my heart.

Over the years, I have gotten to know the individual beings. For example, there is Gray Patch, a beautiful white Pigeon with a gray patch on his wings in the shape of a butterfly, who flies to me when I call his name. At one point he developed weak legs, and kept falling off of my hand; I offered Reiki for a few days until his legs were strong again. On another occasion, one of his feet was entangled in human hair, which I cut off, so he wouldn’t lose his toes. And there is Black & White, the first Pigeon in this flock who landed on my hand, and White Bow, and Lightning, who compete to ride into the park over my heart.

After this flock of Pigeons, I proceed into the Ramble, in the middle of the park, where an assortment of local birds—mostly Mourning Doves, Pigeons, Sparrows, Cardinals, Woodpeckers, Blue Jays, Nuthatches, and in the winter, Titmice and Chickadees— join me in communion for one to six hours, hopping off and onto my hands and lap, along with friendly Squirrels, sometimes Racoons, and sometimes an unexpected visitor.

For example, a couple of months ago, I asked for a sign of what was to come, and the following day, lightning struck in front of my building, at the same time that it struck the Empire State building. A few days later, a Golden Eagle landed a couple of inches away from my feet in the Ramble. It is worth remembering that Indigenous People consider that the Golden Eagle is a messenger to and from the Creator. In Christianity, the Golden Eagle is the symbol of John the Beloved, who in his later years became John of Patmos––he prophesied the Apocalypse in the Bible’s Book of Revelations.

This daily practice keeps me connected to the natural world, in the true sense of the word, as well as, from time to time, receiving its signs and teachings—the source of all shamanic practice.

Rev. Cindy Pincus
Cindy is a teacher and healer living in Denver, CO and is a lead member of Shamanism Without Borders.

At the end of each day I go out to my yard and stand in the center of my medicine wheel, or if that’s too snowy, I draw a sacred circle on the ground and stand in that. Then I light some kind of sacred smoke; tobacco, copal, juniper, or cedar and blow it in each of the four directions.

As I blow, I ask the plant’s smoke to clear out anything from the day that no longer needs to be in my home or on the property, and to seal the outer boundary with protection. I do this in a clockwise circle starting in the East, then to the South, the West, and finally the North.  I do the same for the sky asking to keep that space clear and open for the light of the cosmos to pour down, and the Earth asking for the love of the planet to rise up into me and my home.

I finish by blowing the smoke directly into my own heart to affirm my seniority and sovereignty in my own home and space.

Jason Ford
Jason is of  the Morgan and Hamilton families, and dwells in Foxboro, ON Canada, where the traditional guardians of the land are the Tyendinaga Mohawk people. As a dedicated lifelong practitioner his current work is centered around advanced shamanic theater. He teaches and heals on a private basis. sunjye@elkdonisarts.com

A little before sunrise, as I cross the bridge from sleeping dreams to waking dreams, I become aware of the heart and pulse beating with life, maybe I get another day to live, love and learn. Remembering all that is important, I sense the support of gravity and ground. Leaning into this sensation and intending to stay connected to being supported all day long, I quickly sense the energy, feeling it. I call in a big smile, as I smile as big as possible. Once I have connected to this smiling energy, I move it with my heart and mind and inner vision through each one of my organs, digestive tract, my brain and spine, and from the spine the smiling energy spreads out into every cell. I like to imagine every single cell in my body is a smiling happy face beaming smiling energy.  I program my aura by putting my hand on my chest, and saying out loud, “I now program my aura to block bad spirit energy and bad intention energy, to allow in good spirit and good intention energy, and to allow out whatever needs out.”

I then sit beaming love energy in a non-conceptual open state before I start my day, and this completes the inner smile morning practice.

Karen Ward PhD
Karen is a counseling psychotherapist who with her husband, John Cantwell, founded and run an online school of Irish Celtic Shamanism in Dublin, Ireland. It is called Sli an Chroi which is Gaelic for Pathway of the Heart. www.slianchroi.ie and www.drkarenwardtherapist.ie

I call this practice breathing with the sun and the moon.

In the Celtic world the Sun is a symbol of the divine masculine and the Moon a symbol of the divine feminine. Whenever I am out and about busy in my day and the shining Sun or reflecting Moon catch my attention (frequently), I stop what I am doing and stand taking three deep slow breaths drawing in their energies to the three Celtic Cauldrons of Poesy – my abdomen- /2nd chakra the Cauldron of Warming/Incubation, my heart/4th chakra – the Cauldron of Motion/Sovereignty, and my Medicine Eye/6th Chakra – the Cauldron of Wisdom. Then I feel nourished and connected with the powers of the divine. Depending on where I am, I might actually bring my hand to my abdomen, chest and forehead or do this intentionally.

Tom Cowan
Tom is a writer, teacher, and a board member of the SSP. He lives in New York’s Hudson Valley.

I call this practice drinking the new water.

Each morning when I get up I go to the sink in the bathroom to drink the new water for the day.

I turn the water on in a slow drizzle, cup my hands, and when they are full, I say, “From the earth this water comes to me.  I drink it and it returns.” I take a swallow and let the rest flow out of my hands.

Then I cup my hands again for my second drink, lift the water up a few inches, and bring it back down as I say, “From the sky this water comes to me.  I drink it and it returns.” I take a swallow and let the rest flow back.

Then I cup my hands a third time and when full, I move them in a clockwise circle as I say “From the four directions this water comes to me. I drink it and it returns.”  I sip some of the water and let the rest flow back.

Then I cup and fill my hands again, and express gratitude for the Water of Life.  I then splash it in my face because this practice is also called “waking up.”

Dr. Steven Farmer
Steven is a licensed psychotherapist, shamanic practitioner, and author of several best-selling books and oracle cards.  DrStevenFarmer.com

I keep a daily journal on my computer. Each morning I first write about anything that’s happening in my world. After completing that I sit back, take a few slow, deep breaths. I put on some recorded drumming at a low volume. Then I thank any of my guides that make an appearance—quite often the Ancestors as a collective show up or any of the “team” will show. They then dictate anything I need to know that I’m perhaps not aware of or what I need to focus on. Then my hands start recording what I’m receiving. The messages could be relatively short or at times rather lengthy. I review what was reported and at times am astounded at their directives.

Nancy Lankston
Nancy is a shamanic practitioner and teacher who offers Navigating by Moonlight Divination as well as Elemental Dreaming Events. Her personal wish is to help and encourage people to reconnect with Mama Earth and the Sacred Feminine.

I call in the directions, the elements and my personal allies, guides and guardian. I thank them for all their help, and protection and guidance in the past. Then I ask them to be with me today. I sit down and run a grounding cord into Mama Earth. I ask that she connect her womb to my womb and guide me.

Jaime Meyer
Jaime is a shamanic practitioner living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is a board member of SSP and offers teaching and healing at www.drummingthesoulawake.com.

I have an early morning practice of going outside to send power to all of my helping spirits, human teachers, the spirits and beings of the land I live on, the ancestors of the land I’m standing on, and all of the wisdom keepers and teachers alive on earth now and also in the older ones in the other world. This is an act of “feeding what feeds you,” as one of my teachers said. It’s like a gratitude practice, and a prayer, but it’s slightly different because I am actively sending health, joy, food, and protection toward all that have shaped me and that now supports, teaches, and blesses me everyday. We send power to what sends us power. I work with tobacco, so I send smoke to all of these helpers, but song and words work too. One of the most delightful things about this practice is that, no matter what time I do it, sparrows and chickadees, and sometimes the cardinals, land in the tree right by me and clearly are watching and enjoying the action.

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About the author

Jaime Meyer

Jaime Meyer

Jaime Meyer is a shamanic practitioner living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is the President of the Board of Directors at Society for Shamanic Practice. His background includes earning a Masters’ Degree in Theology and the Arts from United Seminary of the Twin Cities (1998) and studies on cross-cultural shamanism, mysticism and the spiritual uses of drumming from many cultures since 1983. His book Drumming The Soul Awake is an often funny and touching account of his journey to become an urban shamanic healer. Among others, he has studied with Jose and Lena Stevens, Ailo Gaup, Martin Prechtel and Sandra Ingerman. He also completed a two-year Celtic shamanism training with Tom Cowan.
Jaime Meyer is a shamanic practitioner living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is the President of the Board of Directors at Society for Shamanic Practice. His background includes earning a Masters’ Degree in Theology and the Arts from United Seminary of the Twin Cities (1998) and studies on cross-cultural shamanism, mysticism and the spiritual uses of drumming from many cultures since 1983. His book Drumming The Soul Awake is an often funny and touching account of his journey to become an urban shamanic healer. Among others, he has studied with Jose and Lena Stevens, Ailo Gaup, Martin Prechtel and Sandra Ingerman. He also completed a two-year Celtic shamanism training with Tom Cowan.
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2 Comments

  1. Eva Tree

    Lovely! Thank you for sharing all these practices. I too have a daily practice and it is enriched to hear from the Shamanic community. A’ho! Blessings, Eva

  2. valerie boyar

    thanks for sharing with us the variety in which contemporary shamen recharge the energy that flows through all things….

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