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It is with great sadness that we announce that Pau Nyima Dhondup, the last of three FSS Living Treasures residing in a refugee camp in Nepal passed on September 19, 2013. FSS Field Associate Sarah Sifers was making her annual visit to the camp at the time and provided the following report. Sarah spent many years learning from the Paus at the camp and providing assistance to the people there.
Sunday as I was sitting with Tashi (Pau Nyima’s wife), she shared that Pau Nyima always spoke about his and mine special connection. That during this past summer, when he was so ill, he asked each day if I was coming. That he wanted to be able to see me one more time. And so we did….getting to sit together one last time holding hands and smiling at each other. He looked good. I actually came a week earlier than usual…how thankful am I about that decision.
Yesterday, I made my way to the camp at 4 AM. Tashi had asked that I participate as a family member in the offering of a final kata (Tibetan greeting scarf) and flower malla to his body before it was taken from the house down to the cremation place at 5 AM. What an honor. I arrived at the camp as the men were washing his body with milk. I had the honor of putting the first kata across his body…and became part of the procession that carried his body to the cremation place. Pau Rhichoe‘s son Singye …and Pau Wangchuk‘s son Trinley stayed by my side the entire time. As I stood by Pau Nyima’s funeral pyre, I said my final good-bye…thanking him for his friendship and wishing him a safe passage through the Bardo. They say it was ‘done well’. At the time of his death, rainbows appeared in the cloudless sky. And one appeared again during the cremation. An auspicious sign.
Pau Nyima looked at life with the eyes of a child filled with wonderment. He would become so animated when he told stories that his voice would rise and fall in pitch and he would trill his ‘r’s’ and gesture with his arms. His laugh frequently became a giggle. He called me ‘Sister’…using the English word. If others were with us, he would pretend to need them to translate. But if we were alone, he’d chat with me in English and Nepali…only to go mute when the translator came back into the room. He outfitted me with all that is needed to be a Tibetan shaman…although this tradition, they believe, can only be practiced by a male in their lineage who has had a calling at puberty. He asked me once if, when I was in the airplane, the sun was above me or below me…and was the sun above the clouds. When I said that yes, the sun was above the clouds, he slapped his leg and shouted “I knew it..that is how shadows are made!” And when I said that even when in an airplane that was high above the clouds…still the sun was much higher, he again, slapped his leg in glee and shouted “I knew it.”
Folks in the camp are already wondering what they will do when they become ill…now that the last Tibetan shaman has passed. All I know is that I have lost a treasured friend.
Sarah Sifers, September 24, 2013
After the recent passing of Paul Uccusic, FSS Europa has announced that Roland Urban has been named Chairman of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies Europe. Michael Hasslinger will continue as Vice Chairman and Roswitha Uccusic as Coordinator.
All of Paul Uccusic’s scheduled workshops will take place as announced. Dates and venues will not change. See the calendar of FSS Europe for the new workshop leader and, in a few cases, a new sponsor. This also applies to the 3-Year-Programs, hosted directly by the FSSE.
Detailed information will be provided by the respective faculty member.
For information about workshops in German and other languages throughout Europe, visit the FSS Europa website.
Dear Friends of the Foundation,
This is to advise you that our close friend and colleague Paul Uccusic passed on in Vienna August 2nd, with his wife Roswitha at his side and surrounded by his family.
The Foundation for Shamanic Studies Europe has posted the statement and obituary below on its website, as we are doing.
Under Paul and Roswitha’s leadership, as Paul wished, Roland Urban and Michael Hasslinger are prepared to continue the work of FSS Europe. For the present, Roland will be the contact person for FSS Europe matters. FSS Europe website: www.shamanicstudies.net.
The world has lost a truly wonderful person. Our deepest sympathies to Paul’s family.
The Foundation for Shamanic Studies Europe is mourning its director Paul Uccusic. Paul passed away on Friday, August 2nd, 2013 in Vienna. He was in his 77th year. Two days before, he had collapsed in his home following a heart attack and suffered irreversible head injury. Paul Uccusic was born in 1937 in Vienna. After studies of chemistry, physics and mathematics at the University of Vienna, he became a journalist and served in leading positions in different daily newspapers in Vienna. In 1971, he got in touch with parapsychology and spiritual healing. He is the author of several books about healing. In 1981, he met Michael Harner, the Founder of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, in Alpbach in Tyrol. The Core Shamanism formulated by Michael Harner became Paul’s central field of interest. He made study visits to the US, Latin America and Siberia. In 1985, Paul started to teach for the Foundation in German-speaking countries. In 1991, he published his book The Shaman In Us (in German). Until his death Paul Uccusic served as Director of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies Europe. Building up the Foundation in Europe and spreading Core Shamanism in Europe and beyond were his life’s work.
Read the latest Foundation news, including Michael Harner’s announcement for a vibrant future for the Foundation, the latest on Cave and Cosmos: Shamanic Encounters with Another Reality, shamanic news, new books on shamanism, healing words, and more. Read the issue.
May 20, 2013
Dear Friend of Shamanism,
I hope this letter finds you well and looking forward to the summer.
As you know, along with Sandra Harner, I led the activities of the Foundation and its predecessor, the Center for Shamanic Studies, for more than 34 years. In that time, thanks to participants like you — donors, FSS Circle members, students, and graduates — the Foundation has had a tremendous influence on our world, making shamanic healing and wisdom available once again in contemporary society. Sandra and I owe you a tremendous debt of gratitude.
With the publication of Cave and Cosmos, the fundamental tenets of core shamanism and a significant portion of what I have taught the last several decades is now preserved in writing for future generations. But the work is far from done. It has always been my intention, as stated in our mission statement — the preservation, study, and teaching of shamanic knowledge for the welfare of the Planet and its inhabitants — that the Foundation continue to grow long beyond my lifetime until humankind finally recognizes that there is another reality that people can access shamanically to help us solve the problems of humanity and the planet.
After her advanced FSS shamanic training, in 2006 Susan Mokelke was invited to the Foundation to assist Sandra Harner and me, with an eye toward a sustainable future for the Foundation. Before coming to the Foundation, Susan was a successful businesswoman, worked in non-profit management and education for more than 25 years, and has a law degree. She has impressive computer skills, with the knowledge and abilities required today to maintain a powerful presence for the FSS on the web and make full use of electronic communications.
For the past seven years, Susan has gradually assumed the management of the Foundation’s day-to-day activities, as well as working with Sandra and me to consider and plan for the years ahead. Susan’s unique qualifications, talents, knowledge of shamanism, and hard work have made her a truly outstanding executive director, shamanic practitioner, and teacher of shamanism.
Susan has a deep love and respect for our mutual work and is fully committed to the future success of the Foundation. For some time now, she has taught her very successful new summertime Three Year Program in the Pacific Northwest and has co-taught with me in the San Francisco Bay Area. She also maintains her own shamanic healing practice. Those of you who have interacted with her know of her balanced, cooperative, and optimistic approach, her intelligence, sense of fairness, willingness to listen, and generosity of spirit.
Now that I have published Cave and Cosmos and turned 84, it is time to advise you of steps recently taken to assure a vibrant and successful future for the Foundation, its faculty, and for the Shamanic Knowledge Conservatory. At my initiation, the Foundation’s Board of Trustees in their April 20th meeting voted unanimously to elect Susan Mokelke President effective July 1, 2013, to give me time to raise funds for the Foundation’s future. Sandra Harner, co-founder of the Foundation, has kindly agreed to continue as Vice President.
The Board has designated me “Founder” and elected me Vice President for Development. In that capacity, I will work with Board members and benefactors to seek increased funding for all aspects of Foundation’s tasks, with significant support of teaching activities and the unique archive preserved in the Shamanic Knowledge Conservatory. Toward that end, your continued participation and financial assistance are essential to the sustainability of the Foundation’s workshops and programs.
At its meeting, the Board of Trustees also elected two new members, both of them dedicated supporters. The Board now consists of ten members with a variety of experience in anthropology, finance and fundraising, psychology, core shamanism, the arts, business, and non-profit management, who are well qualified to lead the Foundation into the future. This next phase promises to be one of continued expansion as we work together to help bring the wisdom and compassion of the spirits into our world through the Foundation’s trainings and other activities. I ask you to give Susan full support during the years ahead. With your help and that of the members of our Board of Trustees, we can make this promise a reality for many decades to come.
I look forward to having more time to interact with you and other enthusiasts of shamanism. I also plan to support our FSS community in a new way by engaging in two-way video conversations (Skype), beginning with students in the advanced residential programs.
You have helped make the Foundation the premiere organization in the world for the safeguarding and teaching of shamanic knowledge. I wish to express my gratitude to you for your commitment. With your support and that of the helping spirits, our Foundation can continue to lead the way into a new era, where the wisdom and assistance of the compassionate spirits of another reality are accessible to all.
With warm regards and my profound thanks,
Cc: FSS Board of Trustees
Harner Shamanic Counseling Training Now Open for Registration – July 15 – 19, 2013, San Francisco Bay Area, CaliforniaJanuary 9th, 2013
Harner Shamanic Counseling Training (HSCT) is intensive preparation in a remarkable and highly effective system of personal problem-solving and guidance for those who wish to use the methods for themselves or professionally for others. HSCT was originated in the early 1980s by Michael Harner based on his earlier devised core shamanism. The program is now open for registration. Taught by April Tuck, July 15 – 19, 2013 in the San Francisco Bay Area, northern Marin, California. Click for more information…
December 2012 FSS E-Newsletter Released – Michael Harner Recognized by Anthropology of ConsciousnessDecember 30th, 2012
The year-end FSS E-Newsletter has been released. Michael Harner was recently recognized for his life’s work in shamanism by his peers, with an essay in his honor in Anthropology of Consciousness (American Anthropological Association). Read the latest Foundation news, plus the year in review, links to news articles, FSS holiday and New Year video, healing words, and more. View the issue…
Click to view the FSS E-Newsletter archives and read back issues.
Learning shamanism is not just a matter of acquiring methods, but also of increasing spiritual power and knowing how to use it. From the shamanic point of view, people who are not spiritually “power-filled” are prone to illness, accidents, and misfortune. Anyone who has had a traumatic experience may lose a portion of their soul, of their spiritual essence. There are also other reasons this may occur. In this workshop, participants will learn about soul loss and soul retrieval from a shamanic perspective. There will be a particular emphasis on the importance of shamanic power to do successful soul retrieval. Participants will also learn how to re-empower a client’s soul after it has been returned so that the client is once again spiritually power-filled, leading to greater health and well-being. This soul retrieval training is based on worldwide core principles and methods. It does not require Western psychological perspectives and practices. More information and advanced prerequisites required…
All of the Foundation’s programs are based on Michael Harner’s pioneering work in core shamanism – more than 50 years of research, experimentation, development, and teaching. The resulting workshops and training programs embody the authentic, ethical, and effective practice of shamanism and shamanic healing and are widely considered as unparalleled in the world.
Read the latest Foundation news in the September 2012 issue of the FSS E-News. Read about the new workshop Shamanism Practicum: Guidelines for a Healthy Shamanic Practice; Snuff-jaguar shaman Mandu da Silva, shamans of Northern Mongolia, articles and news about shamanism, healing words, and more. Subscribe to the FSS email list (go the the HOME page and scroll down to the “FREE E-NEWS” box in the right-hand column) and get the next issue as soon as it is released or become a member of the Circle of the Foundation and receive both the E-news and special benefits that support your interest in shamanism.