Author Profile

Tom Cowan

Tom Cowan

Tom Cowan is a shamanic practitioner specializing in Celtic visionary and healing techniques. He combines universal core shamanism with traditional European spirit lore to create spiritual practices that can heal and enrich one’s own life and the lives of others. He is an internationally respected teacher, author, lecturer, and tour leader. He has taught training programs in England, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Slovakia and Italy. Tom received a doctorate in history from St. Louis University. He has studied extensively with and taught for the Foundation for Shamanic Studies. Tom is the author of Yearning For The Wind: Celtic Reflections on Nature and the Soul, Fire in the Head: Shamanism and the Celtic Spirit, Shamanism as a Spiritual Practice for Daily Life, The Pocket Guide to Shamanism, The Book of Seance, The Way of the Saints: Prayers, Practices, and Meditations and Wending Your Way: A New Version of the Old English Rune Poem.
Shamanism and Christianity

Shamanism and Christianity

A Review of Soul Journeys: Christian Spirituality and Shamanism as Pathways for Wholeness and Understanding by Daniel L Prechtel, John R. Mabry, and Katrina Leathers One of the important teachings Michael Harner gave us is that shamanism is not a religion.  It is a...

Don Jose Matsuwa’s Triple Challenge

Don Jose Matsuwa’s Triple Challenge

​The shaman's path is unending. I am an old, old man and still a baby, standing before the mystery of the world, filled with awe.    ~Don Jose Matsuwa I've been haunted by this statement from the renowned Huichol shaman Don Jose Matsuwa since I first read it back in...

It’s WAR!!! (Or is it?)

It’s WAR!!! (Or is it?)

Reporters covering the coronavirus keep referring to this as a war. So too do health-care personnel, politicians, and commentators. Certainly there are enough aspects of this pandemic to warrant the war analogy. We hear about the president's War Powers Act, wartime...

Feeling Small

Feeling Small

​As the coronavirus spreads around the earth, we may teeter on the brink of despair. Despair that there’s nothing we can do, or despair that things are not going to get better, or despair that the good things may be gone forever. I’d like to wallow in this despair for...

Beara, Brigid and Angus

Beara, Brigid and Angus

This audio features beautiful Celtic storytelling, poetry and song. We then turn to ask ourselves, how are we similar to Beara, Brigid and Angus and how can these Celtic allies support us and others during this time of year?...

Rumi’s Field

Rumi’s Field

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field.  I'll meet you there.”  —Rumi We've described the United States and other nations as polarized for so long now it seems this condition is normal. Government, societies, churches, schools, towns, families,...

Why Poetry?

Why Poetry?

Like shamans, poets have visionary experiences which they share with others through their poetry.  If a poem is mystical, or even semi-mystical, it resonates with something deep within us.  We feel that our souls understand the poet's vision. Aristotle said that image...

Praying at the River

Praying at the River

Unless they are flooded and overflowing their banks, rivers pretty much keep to themselves, flowing through channels cut into the land since ancient times.  Although many rivers are powerful, even mighty, they can become somewhat helpless in the face of human abuse. ...

Shamanism and the Secrets of Childhood

Shamanism and the Secrets of Childhood

In this audio Tom explores the wisdom and secrets contained within the innocence of childhood. https://cdn1.shamanicpractice.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/18141929/Shamanism-and-The-Secrets-of-Childhood_Tom-Cowan.mp3 [media-downloader media_id="3621" texts="Download...

Faerie Presence

Faerie Presence

There is a type of fairy encounter often dismissed as less authentic and less significant than other types, and yet possibly the most common encounter and one with the most positive, uplifting effects on the human spirit.  This is what I call encountering the “faerie...

BOOK REVIEW: Shamanism in the Ice Age

BOOK REVIEW: Shamanism in the Ice Age

Reflections on Kim Stanley Robinson's novel Shaman by Tom Cowan Often we derive secret pleasure when informing people who label shamanism a “new age fad” that shamanism is 35,000 to 40,000 years old, maybe older, more ancient than the world's “major...

BOOK REVIEW: Speaking with Nature

BOOK REVIEW: Speaking with Nature

Authored by Sandra Ingerman and Llyn Roberts Book Review by Tom Cowan ~ Sandra Ingerman and Llyn Roberts have written an engaging account of how they incorporate their love of the natural world into their shamanic practices. Each writes from personal experiences about...