The Art and Science of Shamanic Healing


This in-person intensive will be held in the midst of an Earthtribe vision encampment, a place dedicated to healing of person and planet through the birthing of visions. The format will include the building of sacred space through ceremony, and tracking the veil between the inner field and outer eco-fields, known to the ancients as the Sacred Web. The eco-field setting is Deer Dancer Ranch located about halfway between Austin and Houston. Specific skill sets will be explored through a variety of ceremonies, including middle of the night healing.

Course Description

This course falls under the classification of Extreme Wisdom. Students will camp out on a beautiful but rugged ranch where April weather can be turbulent, ranging from spring storms to hot winds. A central aim of the learning experience is to challenge the usual identity of the student through close contact with the heart of Nature. Part of the challenge will be to redefine the student’s relationship with food. Although you will not be fasting, you will shop for and select your own food for a five day period and see how this process contributes to eco-field healing.

Each day will include specific dialogues and substantial content with Jack Jensen, M.D., a well known surgeon, Allison Jensen, Ph.D.,curator of the restoration project and healing of the ranch, and Will Taegel, Ph.D., author of The Mother Tongue: Intimacy in the Eco-field. Judith Yost, D.Min., will participate at the beginning and end of the intensive. She will be vision questing for her 70th year, and students will have an opportunity to support her together with seven other questers. Judith will offer students an inside view of elder vision questing through her own experience. We work with the premise that a primary healing of Earth includes a particular form of ancient vision questing. You will learn about this process in the intensive, although you yourselves will not be vision questing.

A major emphasis of the healing process is seen with the recovery of humans' ability to speak The Mother Tongue of the more-than-human eco-field, that language of the landscape beneath all languages. A central task of the participant healer is to bridge the gap and restore the balance between humans and more-than-humans, so that humans take their place not as dominant but rather as reciprocal aspects of the field.

You will have the opportunity to participate in healing sweat lodge ceremonies, death/rebirth ceremonies, vision naming, intentional stake ceremony, and middle of the night tipi healing.

This intensive majors in experiential learning; however, there will be considerable academic “meat” through the reading and dialogues throughout the five day period.

In short, the intensive will be something like an immersion week in a foreign language (one dedicated to healing humans and their estrangement from the essence of Nature), only this language is the one lost before languages took the form of writing.


  • Wrestle with ancient and newer sciences versions of The Mother Tongue
  • Look at global versions of shamanic healing
  • Deepen your own healing by creating new paths between your culturally-oriented operating ego and that of the natural essence given to you at birth.
  • Participate in healing ceremonies led by a mainstream physician, a psychotherapist/scientist, and a steward of landscape restoration, all trained in ancient shamanism.
  • Expand your own map of healing, as well as contribute to the emerging model.
Required Virtual Learning
  • View three videos that describe the recent Sequoia Vision Quest
  • Participate in one freeconference call with Will and Judith
Required Reading

Will Taegel, The Mother Tongue: Intimacy in the Eco-fields

Will Taegel, Wild Heart: Nature's Hope for Earth's Crisis

Brad Keeney, Shaking Medicine: The Healing Power of Ecstatic Movement
Jon Carolson & Brad Keeney, American Shaman: An Odyssey of Global Healing

Pre-paper Assignment

Write a 3–5 page paper that briefly scans your life in search of pivotal moments of physical, mental and/or spiritual healing. Raise questions for yourself to bring to the intensive.

Post-paper Assignment

Write a 12–15 page paper that tracks your encounter with your own healing during the course of the intensive, or how you see the healing of humans as part of the healing of the eco-field, or questions that emerge for you, or cosmic maps you encountered the readings, the ceremonies, the dialogues, or all of the aforementioned. We expect your paper to reflect specific references to the reading material, input from faculty, and week’s felt sense, as well as supportive resources you bring to the experience.

Dates: April 17—21, 2013

Location: Deer Dancer Ranch, TX
(fly in to Austin, Texas)

Faculty: Jack Jensen, M.D., Allison Jensen, Ph.D., Will Taegel, Ph.D., Judith Yost, D.Min.

Academic Credit: 4 academic credits
Fulfills the Core Course Requirement for Earth Wisdom & the Primordial Mind

Faculty Bios

Will Taegel

Will Taegel brings an integral approach to his work at Wisdom University as Vice President of Academic Affairs. He weds his Native American background and traditional training in shamanic circles with his 30-year practice of psychotherapy, including a stint as Chair of the Texas State Board of Examiners in Psychotherapy. He balances his academic interest in evolution and trauma with the spiritual practice of rainwater collection, solar and wind energy, and environmental restoration. Will Taegel is the author of 8 books and numerous professional articles. He was among the first researchers to connect clinical and cultural disturbance with human estrangement from the sacred core of Nature and, in that regard, to build a number of ongoing eco-spiritual communities and is the co-founder, with Judith Yost, of an eco-spiritual, integral practice community called the Earthtribe.

Judith Yost

Judith Yost is a licensed psycho-therapist and counselor in practice for 30 years. She is the Co-Director, with her spouse Will Taegel, of the Center for Creative Resources, Inc. As Dean of Students at Wisdom University, Judith Yost brings a rich collage of experience and education. For eleven years she served as field, practicum faculty at the University of Houston as graduate student advisor and clinical supervisor. Her doctoral dissertation at the University of Creation Spirituality researched mystical and transformational encounters with Nature, a reflection of her deep connection with the Earth and experience in creating Eco-Spiritual Communities with Dr. Will Taegel. She is the author of the book, Nature and Intimacy. Her abiding interest is the elegant connection between rigorous intellect and the profound interior.