“You have direct access to the deep wisdom of soul and spirit through communion with Nature–with the animal, plants, stones, waters, mountains, and forests.  Many cultures around the world have always known that Mother Earth is always available to comfort, heal, and nourish us in so many other ways. I call this the path of Mother Earth mysticism. Through her, you will have greater energy, a deeper understanding of the purpose of your life, and a powerful sense of the presence of divine guides and Spirit. You are not alone–neither in the human, nor in the world of spirit and light.”

I do not say this lightly. I say it straight from my heart to yours. After teaching the practices and principles of Mother Earth mysticism for going on 7 years, I, who from childhood always felt a palpable spiritual sense, have forged an even deeper and sweeter sense of connection to myself and Spirit through this profound path.  I have released fears and have manifested fully my mission on Earth. I have also helped many, many students do the same. I have harnessed my true calling life.

I know you can do the same.  You can have all those burning questions about the meaning of life and the nature of the universe answered.  You can feel more integrated and whole, more supported and loved–not just by the human beings around you–but by mysterious yet ever-present powers and forces around you. You can finally understand your own deep spiritual nature, your passionate, persistent love of Mother Earth, of rocks and crystals, of feathers and animals.  You will find a home place for your own heart and mind.  You will find like-minded friends. You will participate in community ceremonies of water and fire, healing and gratitude.

Here is what one of my long-time students has said about what I do:

“When I came to Rachel for my first healing session, I felt like she connected with me. She listened to what I was talking about on a soul level, not just an intellectual and emotional one.  I suddenly was hungry for something deeper.  Our connection opened a door to a world I had been struggling to find and I decided to go to one of the Lodges.  There, she created a sense of excitement that I was finding a place in the world with people who understand me, my art, my creativity, my passion, my way of being.  With Rachel, I felt like I was stepping through a door into another world that is about spirit and life force, creativity and earth.”      –Pamela Underhill, Landscape Artist

Vitality.  Creativity. Purpose. Friendship in heart and spirit.  These are all the things I know you want, because I wanted them, too even before I left my tenured, salaried job at a major university in 2007 to become a shamanic healer and to teach Mother Earth mysticism.

One client has said of me (I share this with a good amount of self-deprecating humor): “Rachel is gorgeous, a genius and a badass!” Maybe I am!  Ha!  Ha!  I did take the radical step to leave my comfortable, well-paid academic career into what I knew was my true calling in life–to be a shamanic healer and spiritual teacher.

Now, you don’t have to do it the way I did it.  But Pamela’s words and the similar sentiments of so many other students written and spoken to me as they have found the courage to ask their families and friends to step up and give them the support they need to be more true to themselves–to be artists, writers, crafters, leaders in their professional fields–to find work that is more satisfying and meaningful–or whatever it is that they have long dreamed of.  To be more supported in their spiritual journey.  To just be better, less anxious and stressed, more happy, whole and beautiful people they know they can be.

This is the promise of the mystical journey into the deep love and power of Mother Earth.  Sometimes this way is called shamanism.  I prefer to call it mysticism.  It is a path of spiritual and personal exploration into the deep mysteries of the universe and Mother Life through connection with Nature in all her beauty and power. It is a path that embraces the fact that we can ask for assistance from animal and plant allies to teach us how to live in harmony with our deepest selves and the world around us.  We can know the presence of the divine in the mountains and oceans, plains and forests.  We can be nourished and loved to the very core of our being.

I am so profoundly grateful that I responded to an invitation to teach in 2010 from two people who were to become my friends and greatest supporters, Larry and Charlsie Baer.   They had been given my name by a mutual friend and shamanic colleague whom they had called to ask if she could teach them about the mesa tradition adapted from the indigenous medicine people of the Andes in Peru.  The mesa is a medicine bundle or sacred altar holding 13 stones which have been put through rites of initiation to become stones that heal, comfort, ground, and center you.  We spoke at length and it emerged that we were both having visions of building a beautiful Medicine Wheel of stone on the Earth. They wanted to build one on their property.

I wondered at the time of the invitation if I should really step up to teach.  So, I went on a walk in a beautiful place out in Nature and prayed for guidance. Suddenly a wind kicked up and I heard in my inner ear these words: “What you teach will be called the Great Medicine Wheel of the New Earth. It will be a great table of compassion welcoming anyone of good heart who wishes to walk connect more deeply with their inner selves, soul and spirit through the ever-present love and vital life force of Mother Earth. It will be a map for how to navigate life with greater power, joy, compassion and ease through meditation, energy healing, prayer, sacred dance, song and drumming, and ceremonies of fire and water.  All of this will provide a powerful template for all who come from feeling lost and alone to living in connection, inner and outer harmony and well-being.”

The message was clear and so in 2011, I started teaching about the ancient, perennial system of the medicine wheel drawing on all the wisdom of the deep spiritual ways carried by my many teachers–Native American, shamanic, and Buddhist. I also incorporated all that I knew from my years of study of how to heal trauma and end violence through storytelling and the rich tools and perspectives of depth psychology.

I, my hosts, Larry and Charlsie Baer and those first students who came built a beautiful Medicine Wheel on the side of Little North Mountain where they lived on the intersection of the Blue Ridge and Appalachian ranges in western Virginia, USA.  We brought the wheel to life with sacred song, drumming and circle dancing.  For 5 years, we healed one another, prayed for the healing of Mother Earth and All our Relations (the plants, animals, waters, stones, and mountains) and created a new, more powerful map for our lives.

In that first year, Mother Earth and Spirit sent us powerful messages that we were on the right track:

  • A deer passing by Larry and Charlsie’s log house on the first morning of the South Lodge when we had prayed to Deer Spirit to give us his teachings of standing strong, light and balanced as we shed our stories of lack, limitation and wounding just as he sheds his antlers.
  • At sunrise Larry saw a bear standing in the Earth Wheel the morning after we had made our first prayers for the West Lodge to call in his assistance with delving into our deepest selves to find and transmute our own and our ancestors wounds into gifts of power and courage.
  • A light dusting of unexpected snow well into the spring season after praying to the purifying energies of the North Lodge and the White Buffalo which calls us to our soul’s greatest purpose.
  • A spiral cloud appeared over the Earth Wheel during the East Lodge in which we strengthen our connection to our Spirit. See if you can find the small heart in the lower part of the circle. 

I have now participated in building 5 Earth Wheels in the U.S. and Canada where we have then met in caring community in the 4 Lodges of the Great Medicine Wheel of the New Earth.  I now teach the 4 Lodges of the Great Medicine Wheel of the New Earth at the beautiful horse farm and retreat center, Galleywinter Farm, run by my wonderful friend and colleague, Gail Todter.

When you join us, you will receive heartfelt, intimate guidance for healing whatever stands in your way to manifesting a life of creativity and abundance.  You will be supported by me and other like-minded folks through energy medicine and ceremony to mutually end patterns of self-judgment and struggle into greater self-love and love for life.  You will call in the work, love, comfort, and home you have always dreamed of.

The Wheel will not end when you leave the nourishing weekends we gather in places like Sacred Circle Books in Alexandria, VA and Galleywinter Farm outside of Charlottesville, VA.  You will bring with you into your daily life meditations, prayers and ceremonies you can do on your own to maintain balance and connection to Mother Earth and the Spirit of All.

If you are interested in learning more, click here to sign up for my newsletters and blog.  [Link to be provided soon].

In the School of Mother Earth Mysticism, there are several ways for you to learn, heal, and deepen spiritually and personally:

In the 4 Lodges (South, West, North East), you move through the teachings of the medicine wheel to learn how to live with soul force, passion and balance through deep integration of the body, mind/emotions, soul, and spirit. You build a mesa, or medicine bundle through rites of initiation to embrace the path of deep spirit and connection as a healer and wisdom walker on the planet.

In this 4 month class series, you journey in the Domains of the Upper World with the help of the Plant and Stone People, Animals, Whales, Dolphins, Ancestors, and Mountains to connect more deeply with your Wise Soul and Expansive Spirit.  In the end, you will have a sweet and powerful prayer bundle and a ceremonial mesa altar which can be used for personal healing and the healing of others and Mother Earth.

In four 4-day weekend intensives, you learn the knowledge, practices and tools for supporting and facilitating a client’s healing in a complete shamanic energy medicine session.  Each class tracks to the teachings, principles and practices of the 4 Lodges of the Great Medicine Wheel of the New Earth so that you understand how the whole of a human being—body, mind/emotions, soul and spirit—are enlisted in healing.

  • Living with Soul Force: Teachings on Shamanism

In this 12-class series, Rachel leads you on a walk through the love and power of the shamanic path based on the core principles of the Great Medicine Wheel of the New Earth School of Mother Earth Mysticism.  Learn how to heal, to live in balance, to walk with the soul force and the path of your highest destiny with passion, love and courage.  Rachel gives a 45-minute talk followed by a half hour of questions and answers. This is a wonderful time to connect personally with Rachel to deepen your spiritual practice or to be introduced to new pathways on the journey of Mother Life.

For more information about classes or to register, contact Rachel at rachelmannphd@gmail.com or 434-227-0538.