Soul retrieval

Soul retrieval. I only roughly know what it refers to in shamanism.

It’s a term that’s intuitive and visceral, and it makes sense even outside the world of shamanism.

For instance, I shun certain parts of my experience. They seem scary, so I avoid them or try to make them go away. These may be a painful story about the world, or myself, or emotions, or certain sensations including physical pain.

Since they are shunned, these parts of my experience are – in a sense – homeless, lost, or orphaned. They are parts of me and happen within and as presence, so they are not really lost or homeless, but they can certainly appear that way. From their perspective, they are lost and homeless, so they feel lost and homeless.

So how do I retrieve them? How do I invite them back? How do I give them a home? I can do that by doing the reverse of shunning them. I can invite them back. I can welcome them. I can meet them with kindness. I can relate to them as I would like to be met, with kindness, presence, patience. By allowing them as they are. By resting with them.

That’s how these parts of my experience are retrieved. That’s how they can return home.


Initial notes……

  • soul retrieval
    • love/heal parts of ourselves – the shunned, abandoned, avoided, ignored, overlooked
    • the parts that wanted what we want, to be acknowledged, present with, loved, listened to, understood, respected


Soul retrieval. I only roughly know what it refers to in shamanism.

But it’s a term I very much like. It’s intuitive, visceral, and it makes sense also outside the world of shamanism.


I only roughly know what soul retrieval refers to in shamanism.

It’s a term I like since it’s intuitive, visceral, and it makes sense also outside the context of shamanism.


Initial draft…..

Soul retrieval.

To me, that term makes sense in a very simple way.

It’s what happens when I befriend and find genuine love for the parts of me that I previously shunned, abandoned, avoided, ignored, and overlooked. The parts I made into an enemy and struggled with. The parts I desperately tried to change or make go away.

As long as I shun these parts, they are split off. They are lost. They are parts of my mind that are lost.

And what they want is what I want. They want to be met in presence, respect, kindness, understanding, love.

So when I meet them in that way, they have an opportunity to return and come home. They are parts of the mind returning home. (They were never lost or not home, but it certainly seems so when they are made into an enemy.)

They are retrieved.

How can I do this? I can befriend them through natural rest or inquiry, or through other supports such as tonglen or ho’oponopono. I can also see how my mind creates the appearance of them as enemies, and of them as they otherwise appear to me. When the mind gets to see this and rest with the different elements creating these appearances, they are recognized as something else than what they initially appeared as. They are recognized as innocent. The mind recognizes them as itself.

When soul retrieval is used in the original shamanic context, it obviously means something more than and different from this.


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