Soulfulness : The Marriage
of Shamanic and Contemporary Psychology
David England


This book (to be published Spring 2017 by Karnac Books) brings the wisdom of the ancient healing practice of shamanism together with the insights of contemporary psychology to provide an integrated approach to the treatment of traumatic symptoms.

The book presents the ancient wisdom of shamanic theory and practice in a form which is fit for use within the mainstream of 21st century psychotherapeutic endeavour, including an extensive explanation of Shamanic Psychology and a practical description of the ceremonies of the Shamanic Journey and Soul Retrieval.

The Basic Medicine Wheel

Historic Shamanic roots of ‘Soulfulness’

Mayan and Native American psychology – a psychology of Self – as expressed in the many aspects of the Medicine Wheel, the wheel of health and wholeness.

The Shamanic Journey and Soul Retrieval, as practiced in traditional societies throughout the world, notably the Tungus tribes of Siberia.


The book reflects on key aspects of contemporary psychological thinking – infant and adult attachment patterns; developmental trauma; the survival personality; imagination and dreams, the spiritual dimension in psychotherapy and counselling – and in extended discussion relates these subjects to the maps and models of Shamanic Psychology, the practice of Shamanic Journey and Soul Retrieval ceremonies, and the psychotherapeutic application of both.

The book brings everything together by offering a practical approach to the integration of psychotherapy and counselling practice with a present-day form of shamanic practice, when working with clients’ developmental trauma. The resulting marriage of shamanic and contemporary psychology and practice is called ‘Soulfulness’.

Reflection: Russian folktale ‘The Bold Knight, the Apples of Youth, and the Water of Life’

A counterpoint to the main text is a reflection on a Russian folktale ‘The Bold Knight, the Apples of Youth, and the Water of Life’, which both implicitly reflects the shamanic landscape and has a powerful psychological resonance.