Please note that due to the COVID pandemic, Bekki’s classes have been moved online and will be taught online as necessary.

Bekki tending a shamanic altar

Bekki teaches her year-long Shamanic Apprenticeship in Ithaca, NY. This replaces the Two-Week Shamanic Healing Training which she taught with Crow from 1992 to 2010. In 2016, inspired by Crow’s shamanic apprentice program, which he had been teaching for a couple of years at Dragon Waters in southern Ohio, she formulated her own apprenticeship program.

This training is designed for participants who have a good grounding in shamanic journey work and who have already been practicing shamanism as their primary spiritual path, or as a significant adjunct to their spiritual path, and who already have strong shamanic ally contacts. Acceptance into the program is at Bekki’s discretion. Usually 2 and up to 4 participants per training assures intensive and in-depth attention from the teacher.


  • The Fundamentals of Shamanism and Circle of the Ancestors workshops with Bekki, or equivalent training.
  • At least 6 months of experience with journeying (once a week or more often). You will need to submit copies of your journeys over this time. (Not required of people who have studied extensively with Bekki; in some cases this is waived if you can demonstrate your level of shamanic skill).
  • Permission of your allies
  • Interview with Bekki
  • Bekki’s review of your natal astrology chart (to pre-select appropriate student partners for your training)

Topics Covered

Each topic is taught over a 2-day period, and the students work with volunteers from the community in supervised group healing sessions based on the teachings.

Many of the sessions re-visit topics covered by other workshops Bekki teaches at the intermediate level, always from the perspective of developing and supporting advanced healing skills.

The topics covered are as follows (roughly in order, which can vary somewhat): 

Energy healing

A review of the basics of energy work from a shamanic perspective, and discussion of systems students are already using (shamanic, polarity, Reiki, etc.), including partner work. Discussion of trance dance, healing stones, and other energy healing tools. When possible, Bekki arranges to teach Opening the Shamanic Voice to fulfill most of the requirements of this segment; additional readings and outside sessions may round out the work.

Ancestor work

Review and new perspectives of ancestor work. Ritual work with the Ancestors, focused on healer-ancestors. (The Circle of the Ancestors workshop is a prerequisite for the course. This segment does not replace it.)

Elemental spirit allies

Earth Elementals: We will make contact with a personal earth elemental spirit ally and learn to work with this elemental to examine the physical aspects of illness, disease, and imbalance in our clients.

Water Elementals: We will make contact with a personal water elemental spirit ally and learn to work with this elemental to examine the emotional aspects of illness, disease and imbalance in our clients.

Air Elementals: We will make contact with a personal air elemental spirit ally and learn to work with this elemental to examine the mental causes of illness, disease, and imbalance in our clients (ideas, beliefs, mental constructs).

Fire Elementals: We will make contact with a personal fire elemental spirit ally and learn to work with this elemental to examine the spiritual causes of illness, disease, and imbalance in our clients (relationship with the Divine and its impact on wellness, crises of faith, spiritual wounds, etc.).

Fey allies

Healing with Fey allies, Faery Doctoring. Throughout the world, the Faery Folk are recognized as a powerful class of spirits. The Faery Doctoring presented here is based primarily on Celtic/European teachings. Bekki has been working with the Fey since 2006, and considers them among her most powerful allies.

Plant spirit allies

Making contact and working with plant allies (participants make their own sacred place with selected plants, altar, and meditation space at Medicine Spring Farm in Ithaca, where the training takes place); making plant medicines and tools, as directed by our allies. The plant spirits are important spirit helpers in our shamanic healing work.

Working with Divinities

All shamanic peoples believe in a Divine Being or Beings who created the world and continue to shape and guide it. These Beings are concerned for their creation and are available as shamanic helpers for healing and maintaining balance of our world. We will work with personal Divinities who offer themselves as shamanic helpers for us in our healing practice. 

Shamanic extraction

Learning about and learning to heal with this classic shamanic technique. Bekki covers diverse techniques across cultures. It is recognized throughout shamanic cultures that shamanic intrusions- negative energies or matter-out-of-place- can lodge in our energy bodies, and cause illness or imbalance. We learn how to recognize and remove these intrusions.

Soul retrieval

Learning about and learning to heal with this classic shamanic technique. A variety of approaches to the concept of soul loss and soul return are covered, examining diverse cultural perspectives. Soul loss can be caused by physical or non-physical trauma, and is one of the causes of illness or imbalance.

Psychopomp work

Learning about and learning to heal with this classic shamanic technique. Psychopomp means “soul guide”. Sometimes when people die they do not make the crossing to the afterlife. One of the shaman’s roles is to find the spirit where it is wandering and guide it to the other side, doing healing work for it if required.

Exorcism and De-possession

Learning about and learning to heal with these classic shamanic techniques. Possession of a human, an animal or a place by a discarnate human or a non-human entity (a spirit of disease, for example) can create illness or other problems. A possessing spirit has attached to a human or other sentient being, or to a location. In the case of discarnate humans, removing the spirit, healing it and helping it cross to the afterlife is required. If the spirit is non-human, exorcising it is required (removal and any other shamanic activity the allies indicate, in order to render it harmless.)

Required Readings

  • The Shaman by Piers Vitebsky: the best and most beautiful summary of this complex subject.
  • Shamanism: Archaic Techniques of Ecstasy by Mircea Eliade: A classic.
  • The Sacred Tree: Reflections on Native American Spirituality by Judie Bopp and Michael Bopp
  • Soul Retrieval: Mending the Fragmented Self by Sandra Ingerman
  • Riding Windhorses and Chosen by the Spirits by Sarangerel Odigan
  • Shamans, Healers, and Medicine Men by Holger Kalwait
  • The Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the Origins of Knowledge and Shamans Through Time: 500 Years on the Path to Knowledge by Jeremy Narby