The Alaska Phoenix is the rise of my spiritual self from the ashes of my theology studies. Defining who, and what I am in relationship to the world around me, and my value to society, as well as the earth as-a-whole. I have chosen to travel a different path based on the knowledge gained, and wisdom earned. That path led me back to the birthplace of the Americas. Long before the conflicts of Western Europe and the Middle East over a religious bastion. To Beringia, the land bridge that existed between what is now Siberia, and Alaska during the Last Glacial Maximum covering (later Wisconsin glaciation (30 - 15,000 years ago)) most of North America. Those brave nomads traveled across what was this land bridge that led them to settle here in Alaska (then Eastern Beringia). With the Cordilleran Ice Sheet not receding until about 10,000 years later, these peoples established Alaska as one of the first human settlements on the North American continent, arguably 3000 years before the Clovis peoples along the northern border of what became the United States of America.
With them came a culture. According to most anthropological studies, these first nomads left their homes in southern Altai on the Steppes of what is Siberia today. With their culture making the journey with them, came spiritual understanding. Their practices were most likely was a modified version of the "Altaian Shamanism". This is the practice that I feel compelled to practice due to its underlying principles.
All living things have spirits, and each spirit has a role to play within our universe.
No spirit dwelling human being is wrong about their choice of worship.
I have nothing to prove to anyone in this lifetime.
This lifetime is a journey of understanding and learning.
While I continue to seek new knowledge, and building my collective wisdom, I finally feel that I am spiritually home.
I believe in Peace and Coexistence of all Living Things
My Spiritual Beliefs
My Journey here
My journey here began in 1978 in south Tucson, Arizona when I was introduced to the beliefs and traditions of the Navajo peoples by my neighbor (at the time), named "White Sands". My family, having recently relocated from southern Louisiana, had acquired the property next to his. With my father absent most of the time, he more-or-less adopted me as his own grandson. During the five years I spent listening to his stories, and songs, he spoke reverently of the spirits that surrounded us all the time, and taught me to listen for them. At the conclusion of this five years, I left Arizona and began the adventure of "life". I put on my traveling shoes and left Tucson for all points along the west coast, ending in western Washington where I met my bride, and my oldest child. We left Washington for our "home" here in south-central Alaska, where we have been now for over 25 years, and was introduced to my four sons. As I grew into an older man, I studied theology of the modern world before realizing I had had the proper education all along. My spiritual beliefs given to me from White Sands back in Tucson decades before. As in natural life, I have completed the circle of understanding to arrive here.
As a Beringian Shaman
Shamanism in these Modern-Times
To discover where I have arrived, one must examine the journey at which I undertook to get here. As an ordained Chaplain in the Christian faith, I began a 30+ year journey of study in most of the organized religions of the world. Within these studies, I looked at the underlying doctrine that each religious practice follows. Within each, I identified how they drew in their followers, kept them engaged, and what beliefs were consumed by the parishioners. The other primary factor that dictated which practice "spoke to me" was how the parishioners accepted and interacted with, other spiritual bodies other than their own.
While the idea of an organized religious practice has always caused me some concern, after three decades of searching I was able to finally find where my heart had led me. However, there was a great journey of exploratory understanding that I had to undertake to get here. There were many of my personal feelings about the organized beliefs that I struggled with during the many discoveries I made throughout my journey.
After searching through all the major religious doctrines, my heart continued to seek some comfort regarding what I fully believed. Following the completion of my theology studies at a local Christian University, followed by my ordination, and Doctor-level studies in Divinity, I still found myself unable to fulfill my internal drive to match my thoughts with the beliefs of each of the major religions, and believe me, I tried diligently to apply their beliefs to what I knew to be true. Both in an organized study with Church leaders and teachers, and an unorganized study where I interacted with the followers and did research. I ensured that I supported any thought process moving forward with either: A) had archeological evidence, or B) had spiritual understandings that made sense. Ultimately many of my findings were supported by my own sense of realism. I wanted to know the TRUTH, and not rumors, not stories (regardless of details). I was much more interested in the Anthropologic record. As I uncovered the archeological evidence, those quiet feelings I had within my heart began to increase in volume. As I arrived (in my studies) to the migration out of Altai across the Beringia Land Bridge, my spirit was touched and connected. I had arrived at what I knew in my heart, and my head, to be the truth as to how our Universe worked. The spirits of those ancestors spoke to me, and I knew, I had come home.
The ideas around "Eastern Beringian Shamanism" absolutely make total sense, as I began the study I felt whole, for the first time. Understanding and recognizing the collection of spirits that have left their physical form is a concept that rings very true for me. I totally understand this. I don't subscribe to the need for a demonstration to summon these spirits, due to their constant advice they offer, for those who listen. With the use of meditation and contemplative thoughts, we are guided along our path toward our inevitable conclusion. However, it is the wisdom we acquire during our journey that will be of great benefit to those who seek our counsel both: in the present day, as well as after we leave our physical form.
My mission now is to teach individuals to harness their own internal energy by seeking to obtain balance. We must learn to communicate with, and seek advice from, those spirits that surround us every minute of every day. We must learn to live our lives with purpose, and balance. Be one with all things around us, and learn from them, that which makes this existence a better place for all humankind.
More to come as I seek wisdom from these spirits, and learn my rightful home as an Eastern Beringian Shaman.
My responsibility as a practicing East Beringian Shaman is to help followers learn to listen to the appropriate spirits to help guide them in their lifetimes to achieve their purpose. There are hundreds of millions of spirits that surround us each day, and knowing which spirit to communicate with, regarding specific challenges in our lives, maybe challenging. It is my teachings that can help communicate with the right spirits at the right time to accomplish what is needing to be learned. In addition, there are some spirits who left something undone in their lifetimes, and therefore, as a Shaman, I help foster the completion of those tasks, allowing the spirit to find peace and balance. I teach my followers to understand the pain of the earth, the sky, and the great oceans, and to utilize their specific skills to help heal the wounds left by those who have no mercy for what they destroy.
As a wedding officiant, I work with the couple to understand the influences that the spirits will have on their lives together and help them know the right spirits of ancestors to call upon to ensure overall success in the marriage.
As a counselor, my continued understanding of the connection between the spirit world and the physical plane helps to guide my parishioners through their challenges with an understanding of the spiritual influence that may be placed upon them.