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Healing Through Sacred Music

April, 2019

(Our Lady Sings A Lullaby To The Endangered Species by Shiloh Sophia McCloud)

You are the universe, expressing itself as a human for a little while.

-Eckhart Tolle

When
I was a kid nature was my friend, my therapist and my inspiration. I
looked forward to the summer months when darkness fell later in the
day so that I could stay outside as long as possible. One of my
favourite places to go when I was troubled was to climb up to the top
of the cedar tree in front of my house. After a while of swaying
along with the wind at the top in silence, I inevitably felt calmer
and would often start hearing music. As a kid, I was always humming
or singing–to the extent that my godmother often joked that I sang
more than I spoke! I experienced more inner peace when I was singing
and during that time, the world made sense to me and was a less scary
place. I felt like I was embraced in those moments by a unifying and
loving force in the universe. I love this quote from J.K. Rowling’s
book Harry
Potter and the Deathly Hallows” because I sometimes wondered if I
was crazy for hearing things other folks didn’t seem to be
noticing: “Of course it is happening in your head, Harry, but why
on earth should that mean that it is not real?”

As
a kid, I thought I was making up these songs I was humming. It wasn’t
until I began my shamanic training in earnest that I started to
realize that these songs were not coming from me at all. People ask
me where these songs originate from and all I can say with any sort
of definitiveness is that they do not come from my own creative
“genius.” These songs are in the ether around us: They come from
Spirit and they belong to Spirit. They are lent to us for healing
purposes. Some of the songs feel like they come from the land and
they have the “feel” of the ancestral territory that I find
myself on when I hear them. I’ve traveled all over the world and
the songs I hear in each of those places tend to be distinct to them.
I would love to learn more about the songlines that indigenous
Australians follow in their tradition. Perhaps someday, I will
receive the honour of this teaching.

I
don’t know why these songs come to me–perhaps simply because I am
listening. However, I do feel that this gift is not exclusive to me.
I remember asking an elder I worked with about this and he said that
everyone has a personal song and they can go into nature to ask for
this song. If this is done with ego, it will backfire so it’s
important to have a clear intent around why this personal song is
needed (i.e. for healing, to help with a life transition, or to
strengthen our sense of self-worth). It is a listening process that
might take a lot of attempts to hear so patience and perseverance is
required. We cannot demand these things from Spirit; we can only open
ourselves up to receive with gratitude and humility. When I sing my
personal song, it helps me connect with my Sacred Dream (my spiritual
mission and the reason I am here). In the hubbub of life, this is an
indispensable tool for me–especially when I need perspective
because I’ve forgotten who I am and what I am about in a given
situation.

I
sang with the Universal Gospel Choir in Vancouver for almost a
decade. It is a glorious experience singing in unison with sixty
other people, creating a wall of sound that bounces off the walls of
the church and into each person in it. We sang sacred music from
traditions all around the world. Though I often found myself on
stage, I was never singing for entertainment, but to increase my
connection to Spirit. It was not uncommon for me to be so moved by
the spirit of the song that I would cry or move my way through a
piece. The audience members often told me that they came to our
concerts for healing and hope. These folks wanted to align with their
spiritual aspect through these songs and it worked for them.

What
is the process of catching a song? This differs from tradition to
tradition around the world. And I qualify what I am about to share by
saying that this is my experience, which is not linked to a
particular tradition but has been happening spontaneously “through”
me since I was young. In Barbara
Tedlock’s book “The Woman in the Shaman’s Body,” she makes a
distinction between hereditary shamans who would pass on songs from
their traditions throughout generations and what she calls
“inspirational” shamans:

In
the mid-80s hereditary shamans in the Soviet Union were almost wiped
out by government persecution (put in gulags or then killed).  An
alternative inspirational shamanic path practiced for generations by
Turkic and Khakass peoples enabled shamanism to survive. Shamans
traveling this path received healing knowledge directly from the
spirits of the earth, water and sky.”

Although
I don’t call myself a shaman, I do see similarities between what
happens to me and what the inspirational shamans of Asia are doing. I
don’t always go looking for these songs. They have often come to me
in my sleeping dreamtime. This is my favourite way of catching songs
from Spirit because I know my ego is not involved in that. I kept a
recorder by bed for many years to remember them when I awoke. I would
then do ceremony to see what the song was to be used for and how to
share it in a good way. So far, I’ve been instructed to share all
of these songs so the people could use them for their own healing. I
have honoured that. If Spirit ever told me to keep a song to myself,
I would respect that too. In fact, I highly recommend learning as
much about the history of scared songs and the protocols around their
use before singing them or sharing them in any way. I’ve included a
link to the Going Shamanic podcast I did on this topic at the foot of
this article in case readers want more in depth information on how to
take care with and of these songs.

When
I travel, the first thing I do when I place my feet on the soil of
this new country is to introduce myself to the ancestors of the place
and I give gratitude to them for allowing me to be there for a while.
One thing I’ve learned is that these songs wouldn’t come through
me at all if I didn’t seek to have a relationship with the spirit
of each song and with the land they come from. It’s a bit like
dating to me where every time I sing a song, I learn a bit more about
it as it touches me in a different way at various junctures in my
life. These songs open the heart and touch a place inside of us that
we don’t always allow ourselves to visit in everyday life. Sacred
songs are designed to shine a light on these spaces. When I am
feeling “off,” singing while playing my frame drum brings me back
to balance quicker than anything else, besides maybe dancing as a
close second.

I
want to point out here that sacred songs are different than popular
songs credited to musicians. These songs are designed for healing and
they often have a very specific intent. For example, some sacred
songs are sung only during funerals, life transitions, or during full
moon ceremonies. It’s good to respect this and to keep the songs as
close to their original version as possible to preserve the
“medicine” that Spirit sent with them. It’s not for us to
understand the ins and outs of this mystery; I love engaging with it.
And I hope that we never unpack the secrets of this magical process
while we are still in human form. Albert Ayler said that “music is
the healing force of the universe.” I am just happy to participate
in that creation while I am in human form.

Resources:

Going Shamanic: Medicine Songs with Jennifer Engracio

Universal Gospel Choir

Featured art by: Shiloh Sophia McCloud “Our Lady Sings a Lullaby to The Endangered Species”

***

About
the Author:

Jennifer
Engrácio

has been a student of shamanism since 2005. Jennifer is a certified
teacher who has worked with children in many different education
settings since 2001. She is a certified shamanic coach, reiki master,
and lomilomi practitioner; in addition, she runs Spiral Dance
Shamanics. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, she now lives in
Calgary, Canada with her life partner.

Engrácio
participated in self-publishing three books that are now available:

The
Magic Circle: Shamanic Ceremonies for the Child and the Child Within”

Women’s
Power Stories: Honouring the Feminine Principle of Life”

Dreaming
of Cupcakes: A Food Addict’s Shamanic Journey into Healing

For more information go to: www.spiraldanceshamanics.com

Dreaming of Cupcakes: A Food Addict’S Shamanic Journey into Healing on Amazon

3 Pagans and a Cat Monthly Feature

February, 2019

3 Pagans and a Cat Podcast3 Pagans and a Cat Podcast

Three Paths, One Journey, No Cat

In this highly informative & entertaining podcast, three family members embroiled in wildly divergent traditions gather in one room to discuss, debate, and flat-out argue about their magical, mythical, and mundane lives, all for our education and pleasure.

***

Each Month… we will share the previous month’s episodes with you from their site to help keep you up-to-date with their impressive podcast. While there, don’t forget to listen to this month’s as well, we wouldn’t want you to miss a thing!

January 2019 Podcasts

Episode 28: Fire Festival – Imbolc: You thought Car, Gwyn, and Ode had said all they had to say on the subject of holidays, but lo: they’re back for another year of talking at each other about the deeper significance of fire festivals and cross quarters, starting with Imbolc. Are there things yet to learn about Brigid, lambing season, and the start of spring? …well, listen and find out, what do I look like, a prophet?

Episode 29: Liminal 2 – Electrical Boogaloo: Car, Gwyn, and Ode are back for another round of discussion and strong opinions about the role of gender and sexuality in paganism, including a discussion of queer deities, fertility outside heteronormativity, and the deliberateness of inclusion.

This Month’s Podcast Share from their Backlog

Episode 8: Building Your Book – Dedication: Car, Gwyn, and Ode continue the Building Your Book series by talking about dedicating your book (and yourself), cleansing (or not cleansing) your book, and magical methods for protecting your book from prying eyes.

Where
Else to Find 3 Pagans and a Cat…

Their
Website: http://www.3pagansandacat.com

Their
Twitter: https://twitter.com/3_Pagans

Their
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/3PaaC

Their
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ0GJacu9SUzuumXJNNUZwQ

Their
G+: https://plus.google.com/u/2/collection/oCWVXE

Remember

You
can always support your favorite podcasts with a donation.
Every bit helps to keep them
going.

***

About the Author:

Jennifer
Wright
is a witch on a path of change that is always winding. She
founded PaganPagesOrg in the hopes of giving those a platform to
share and learn without judgment. There are too many important things
to her and not enough room to mention them. You are one of them.

3 Pagans and A Cat Monthly Feature

January, 2019

3
Pagans and a Cat Podcast

Three
Paths, One Journey, No Cat

In
this highly informative & entertaining podcast, three family
members embroiled in wildly divergent traditions gather in one room
to discuss, debate, and flat-out argue about their magical, mythical,
and mundane lives, all for our education and pleasure.

***

Each
Month…
we will
share the previous month’s episodes with you from their site to
help keep you up-to-date with their impressive podcast. While there,
don’t forget to listen to this month’s as well, we wouldn’t
want you to miss a thing!

December
2018 Podcasts

Episode 26:Wheel of the Year – Yule: In the eighth of a series of Pagan Holiday Specials, Car, Gwyn, and Ode discuss the origins of Christmas, alcoholic wassail, and who really is this Santa Claus guy, anyway?

Episode 27:One Year Anniversary: Car, Gwyn, and Ode sit down with various forms of alcohol to celebrate a whole year of podcasting, answer questions from listeners live in the Discord server, and briefly touch on the things they’d like to get up to moving forward.

This
Month’s Podcast Share from their Backlog

Episode 6: Special Episode – Convocation 2018: Car, Gwyn, and Ode made it out to ConVocation on February 24, 2018, and on their return discuss the classes they attended, the people they met, the things they bought, and the problems they ran into

Where
Else to Find 3 Pagans and a Cat…

Their
Website: http://www.3pagansandacat.com

Their
Twitter: https://twitter.com/3_Pagans

Their
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/3PaaC

Their
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ0GJacu9SUzuumXJNNUZwQ

Their
G+: https://plus.google.com/u/2/collection/oCWVXE

Remember

You
can always support your favorite podcasts with a donation.
Every bit helps to keep them
going.

***

About
the Author:

Jennifer
Wright
is a witch on a path of change that is always winding. She
founded PaganPagesOrg in the hopes of giving those a platform to
share and learn without judgment. There are too many important things
to her and not enough room to mention them. You are one of them.

Going Shamanic Radio

December, 2018

 

Going Shamanic” is hosted by Jennifer Engracio on P.A.G.E.  Media Project’s blogtalk radio each month. The show focuses on how to integrate shamanism into every day life. Instead of relegating the spiritual aspect of ourselves to Sundays at church or weekend workshops, this show will support listeners in weaving ritual, prayer, magic, alignment with the Spiritworld and the Earth into their lives to enrich their experience of living.

 

This Month’s Topic: Going Shamanic – Sacred Sexuality, Part 1

Human sexuality is mysterious, vibrant and diverse.  This show explores why sexuality is a birth right and important to overall health and wellbeing.  It answers the question: Why is sexuality holy?

 

Jen welcomes Saida Désilets, PhD, who is a thought-leader on the growing edge of researching how women can use their minds, bodies, and spirits to create richer lives through their sensual selves.

She is the founder of the Succulence Revolution, a self-actualizing system that creates more pleasure, sexual aliveness, and deep self-love. She is a co-contributor to the best-selling books of Dr. Christiane Northrup and Dr. Rachel Abrams and has led transformational workshops and seminars for women around the globe for the past 13 years. She is the author of the Emergence of the Sensual Woman: Awakening Our Erotic Innocence, and serves as a guide to women who believe in transformation as a lifelong path of learning, discovery, and walk to freedom.  www.TheSucculenceRevolution.com

This show is pre-recorded and believe me, it’s WORTH the listen. So many amazing gems on how to bring pleasure into your life – because you’re worth it.

 

 

Going Shamanic is hosted by Jennifer Engrácio, about how to integrate shamanism into everyday life.

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Engrácio has been a student of shamanism since 2005. Jennifer is a certified teacher who has worked with children in many different education settings since 2001. She is a certified shamanic practitioner, Reiki Master, and lomilomi practitioner; in addition, she runs Spiral Dance Shamanics. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, she now lives in Calgary, Canada with her life partner.

Engrácio participated in self-publishing three books that are now available:

The Magic Circle: Shamanic Ceremonies for the Child and the Child Within”

Women’s Power Stories: Honouring the Feminine Principle of Life”

Dreaming of Cupcakes: A Food Addict’S Shamanic Journey into Healing

For more information go to: www.spiraldanceshamanics.com

 

3 Pagans and a Cat Monthly Feature

December, 2018

 

3 Pagans and a Cat Podcast

Three Paths, One Journey, No Cat

In this highly informative & entertaining podcast, three family members embroiled in wildly divergent traditions gather in one room to discuss, debate, and flat-out argue about their magical, mythical, and mundane lives, all for our education and pleasure.

 

***

Each Month… we will share the previous month’s episodes with you from their site to help keep you up-to-date with their impressive podcast. While there, don’t forget to listen to this month’s as well, we wouldn’t want you to miss a thing!

 

November 2018 Podcasts

Episode 24: Embracing Dissonance: Car, Gwyn, and Ode discuss the damage they’re still trying to cast off from Christianity, some basic criteria for exploring your pagan options, and how to do the research that brings it all together.

 

 

This Month’s Podcast Share from their Backlog

Episode 5: Building Your Book – Overview: Car, Gwyn, and Ode launch the Building Your Book series by talking about some historical grimoires, discussing their own magical books, and covering the general principles and contents of a Book of Shadows.

 

Where Else to Find 3 Pagans and a Cat…

Their Website: http://www.3pagansandacat.com

Their Twitter: https://twitter.com/3_Pagans

Their Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/3PaaC

Their YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ0GJacu9SUzuumXJNNUZwQ

Their G+: https://plus.google.com/u/2/collection/oCWVXE

 

Remember …

You can always support your favorite podcasts with a donation. Every bit helps to keep them going.

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Wright is a witch on a path of change that is always winding. She founded PaganPagesOrg in the hopes of giving those a platform to share and learn without judgment. There are too many important things to her and not enough room to mention them. You are one of them.

Going Shamanic Radio

September, 2018

 

Going Shamanic” is hosted by Jennifer Engracio on P.A.G.E.  Media Project’s blogtalk radio each month. The show focuses on how to integrate shamanism into every day life. Instead of relegating the spiritual aspect of ourselves to Sundays at church or weekend workshops, this show will support listeners in weaving ritual, prayer, magic, alignment with the Spiritworld and the Earth into their lives to enrich their experience of living.

This Month’s Topic: The Gifts of Attention Deficit Disorder with Christina Masotti

AD(H)D diagnoses are rampant particularly here in North America.  This show explores what the gifts and challenges are of living with ADD.  We also explore how shamanic practices can support someone with this diagnosis.

Listen in with host Jen Engracio and her guest, Christina Moon Mountain Woman, certified Shamanic Practitioner.

Christina weaves Life Purpose Astrology into her sessions.  She strives for personal healing, facilitates the healing of the people, and our beautiful living planet.

 

[audio mp3="http://paganpages.org/content/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/pagemediaproject_2014_01_28_going-shamanic-the-gifts-of-attention-deficit-disorder-addadhd.mp3"][/audio]

 

Going Shamanic is hosted by Jennifer Engrácio, about how to integrate shamanism into everyday life.

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Engrácio has been a student of shamanism since 2005. Jennifer is a certified teacher who has worked with children in many different education settings since 2001. She is a certified shamanic practitioner, Reiki Master, and lomilomi practitioner; in addition, she runs Spiral Dance Shamanics. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, she now lives in Calgary, Canada with her life partner.

Engrácio participated in self-publishing three books that are now available:

The Magic Circle: Shamanic Ceremonies for the Child and the Child Within”

Women’s Power Stories: Honouring the Feminine Principle of Life”

Dreaming of Cupcakes: A Food Addict’S Shamanic Journey into Healing

For more information go to: www.spiraldanceshamanics.com