About Dave

  When someone asks me about how I began or how long      ago I began practicing shamanism I am initially a little unsure      as to how to answer the question. This spiritual path has      been speaking to me at least as long as my current lifetime,       or at least as long as I am able to remember of my time in         this life. Ever  since I was a toddler, (which is as far back as I             can remember), I have felt a deep, spiritualconnection to                nature — plants, other animals, trees, weather, birds,                  even bugs, seasons, rocks, the land, the water — all of                    the living world. And even as a young child, I                    understood that all of this living world is, indeed, alive—                     sentient, inspirited, present.

I have been blessed with a plethora of opportunities to experience nature’s teachings, spiritual and otherwise, directly. As a boy, I explored the forests, beaches, and fields of my home realms, and I learned much from the tree-beings, one in particular, in my own backyard. As a teenager, I spent many days listening to the voice of the ocean as a lifeguard on our local beaches. As I ventured into other landscapes — the mountains of New Hampshire and Maine on summer backpacking trips, the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, the giant forests of the Pacific northwest, and several summers exploring the Colorado Plateau’s canyons, deserts, and mountains — I continued to feel this deep call from and spiritual connection to the natural world.

Sometime during college, I shed the Catholic practice of my upbringing and began to look for ways to pray to and connect with creation. Usually these quests involved backpacking and canoe camping trips or simply time sitting quietly or walking mindfully “alone” in the woods and wilds of wherever I happened to call home at the time. Over the course of these many physical journeys, I also experienced many moments of direct spiritual connections with nature — moments of awakening and direct revelation.

Eventually, I began reading about shamanism, indigenous spiritual practices, and other accounts regarding mystical experiences. I read extensively. Then one day, in early spring 1995, an ad for Michael Harner’s “Way of the Shaman” workshop caught my eye. I read his book and attended the workshop. I knew right away that I had found a path, perhaps the path, for me. At the “Way of…” workshop, I connected with Linda Crane, who was assisting Michael, and worked closely with Linda as my teacher in the weeks, months, and years that followed Michael’s introduction. I have also studied with many other esteemed teachers over the years, such as Sandra Ingerman, Tom Cowan, Nan Moss, David Corbin, further work with Michael Harner, and, of course, the compassionate spirits themselves.

Many years, many teachers, and many students and clients later, practicing shamanism is still my spiritual path, a path that still calls clearly to me, a path of healing and practice and learning that truly has no end.