The soul retrieval work is a ceremony that helps restore our power and wholeness. It comes from ancient shamanic traditions of man Indigenous cultures throughout the world. The work is based on the premise that after we’ve experienced a trauma of some kind in our lives, a part of us separates from us in order to survive the experience and escape the full impact of the pain. This is a natural response to trauma that helps us cope. However, long after the trauma has passed, man of us still feel a sense of being disconnected from ourselves. We ma have the experience of never being the same after a death of a loved one, after an accident, or painful break-up of a relationship. The soul retrieval ceremony is a gentle, yet powerful way to call our spirits back home, and reintegrate those parts of us that are ready and willing to return.
The part that has left us can be lost in what is called a “non-ordinary” reality. I use percussion to bring myself into an altered state, and then I go on an inner journey, with the help of my guides, to find these soul parts on behalf of the client and call them back. The trauma does not return, rather the vital essence of the person, the gifts that the soul part has to share, and the lessons.
Frequently asked questions about the soul retrieval ceremony:
When is the best time to do a soul retrieval?
A good time to do this ceremony is anytime you are feeling stuck or in a rut, having a hard time letting go of an old hurt or anger, searching for clarity, or deeper healing and wholeness.
Is there a time when it is not recommended to have a soul retrieval?
It isn’t recommended to have a soul retrieval if you:
have experienced a severe recent trauma
are in such crisis that you have trouble functioning in your daily life
have a severe mental illness or depression, and/or severe suicidal thoughts
have an addiction to drugs or alcohol
In these cases, I could do other forms of shamanic healing or energy healing to stabilize the emotions. Then at a later time, we can check in to see if the time is right to do a soul retrieval.
How do I prepare for the ceremony?
A minimum of one week is needed before the session in order for both of us to prepare. I recommend that after booking the session, you say a sincere prayer before going to bed each night until the day of the ceremony, asking Spirit to prepare you in your dreamtime for the coming healing. You can also ask for whatever specific healing you are seeking. You can pray to any higher power that you believe in. This work is not associated with any religion and does not interfere with any personal beliefs.
What can I expect after a soul retrieval?
Very often, the effects are subtle, and the integration process is smooth. Many clients have reported feeling lighter and more peaceful afterwards. However, sometimes emotions may arise after the ceremony, and it’s possible to experience a “healing crisis” in the days that follow. Old memories may surface as well. It is always a good idea to have support if needed.
How can I integrate the healing?
It is recommended that within a week or two after the ceremony, that you perform a small ritual to help integrate the healing, and ground it into your body. Think of something you can offer nature Spirit Helpers in gratitude for the healing. It can be some apples for deer, nuts for squirrels, some seed for the birds, tobacco placed at the base of a tree, whatever feels right to you. Spend a little time in whatever nature is available to you, whether it is a park or a garden, and make your offering with intent and heartfelt gratitude.
The second part of the ritual is to sit by a tree you feel connected to (it’s always a good idea to silently ask for permission first to be welcome). Lean up against the tree and take a few deep breaths to centre yourself and quiet your mind. When you feel ready, ask the tree “How can I ground the healing that occurred at the Soul Retrieval?” Pay attention to whatever comes to you, any images or feelings or words. You may not get an answer immediately. Just drop in the question, and then let it go, and see what signs show up in your life. It may come in a way you don’t expect.
How can I get more information about soul retrievals?
Sandra Ingerman is one of the leading practitioners of soul retrievals, and wrote an excellent book called Soul Retrieval: Mending the Fragmented Self. This is a very informative book if one wants to further understand this work.
Another interesting book about shamanism is called The Way of the Shaman by the late Michael Harner, PhD. Harner was an anthropologist who devoted his life to the preservation of ancient shamanic knowledge. His book pioneered the modern shamanic renaissance.
For more information, you can check out their websites at:
What is my training?
I did an intensive year long course with Daniel Leonard, a respected Shaman and healer. The lineage I have learned is called “Core Shamanism”. This term was coined by Michael Harner, who is the founder of The Foundation for Shamanic Studies, which teaches, worldwide, shamanic techniques for healing. Core shamanism consists of the universal, near-universal, and common features of shamanism, and its principles are not bound to any specific cultural group or perspective. Since the west overwhelmingly lost its shamanic knowledge centuries ago due to religious oppression, this approach is specifically intended for Westerners, to reacquire access to their rightful spiritual heritage.
“It was an honour to participate in the soul retrieval ceremony where you created such a safe space to receive what’s truly quite profound…..it’s hard to describe in words all of what I felt during and afterwards – all of it was so moving. The drumming was beautiful, so primal. I think those four parts of my soul were waiting for the right time and place to return to me and you made it happen. In the time since (4 months now), integrating those parts has brought subtle and yet, powerful shifts in my perspective. The biggest difference is how I handle daily stress. It’s as if there’s more of me available to help me out! The energy healing session with you today was a lovely way to get continued support and it was encouraging to know all’s well. Thanks also for adding detailed info. on your site to help me make an informed decision. I hope more people find their way to you as this kind of self-healing is much-needed in our times. To have a wonderful, caring and gentle healer like you within walking distance of my home is truly my kind of village!”
– R.H., Toronto
“My soul retrieval sessions were comforting, relaxing, and deeply healing. After each session, Erica described what she saw during the session, often detailing events that happened many years ago that I had not shared with anyone. I left the sessions feeling much lighter and more at peace. Arica is a gifted healer, with a gentle and warm approach. She is dedicated, nurturing, and highly intuitive.”
– S.J., Toronto
“I felt a sense of joy and happiness after my soul retrieval session. I said to myself, yay, parts of me are home again. Ever since, I have been reflecting on the gifts that each part brought back to me, as opposed to the reasons that part left me in the first place. I am excited to experience life in this new mindset.”
– J.T., Toronto
“Erica: I really have to thank you for your beautiful gift. You cleansed my lingering grief, put my soul better back together, and helped to unstick my path. Since I have seen you, many signs have unfolded and I’ve also had some very deep emotional breakthroughs. I just had a kundalini awakening last night. I am still working through it, but just wanted to check in with you to let you know. Thank you again.”
– C.P., Toronto