A Modern Soul Retrieval:
Recovering Female European Wisdom Traditions
and a Lost Indigenous Ancestral Consciousness
of Deep Relations
This is the title of my dissertation.
The process of graduate school, which took about fifteen years to complete, was nothing short of initiatory. I embarked upon a spiritual journey by way of an academic path that lead me to a deeper understanding of my European ancestry (The picture above is of my maternal great grandmothers — the seven sisters — at a picnic in a forest in Hungary). I was called to this particular pathway by the blood that is in my bones (see bio) and the remembrance I hold in this lifetime of other times, and other more harmonious ways of being on the earth.
My intention for undergoing the graduate school experience was to understand – and validate! – my ancestral legacy as a modern woman called to a shamanic path in a contemporary Western culture that barely acknowledges it. Or more often than not, denies it, or deems such ways of knowing to be crazy.
My research includes aspects of European history, consciousness studies, shamanism, feminist and Indigenous methodologies, Neolithic art, and a little physics and biology.
This work took me into the dark and ugly history of our ancestors, including the expansion of the church and state in Europe, the loss of our communities and pagan connections with nature, the witchhunts, and the Inquisitions — all which still exist in some form today.
I also discovered that there was a legacy of our ancestors making sustainable culture, and cultivating traditions that allowed for masterful communion with nature. I discovered that we have inherited a legacy of rebelling against those institutions that would oppress us. This has caused me to take heart as we strive in this current historical period to correct our absurdly homicidal and suicidal culture-making tendencies.
I am still trying to make sense of my work. Just getting a few letters after one’s name doesn’t mean the work is assimilated, so I am trying to settle into myself after the conclusion of such a personal and arduous initiation. I feel like I’ve finished climbing one helluva mountain and now I get to sit for a moment and take in the view from the vista.