About--Mary's Tradition, Training, & Vision

   Home   |   Workshops   |   Healing   |   Journeying   |   Food & Spirituality   |  Resources  |   About

Contact Info

E-mail: tyrtle@ShamanicSpring.com
Takoma Park Location: 804 Larch Avenue, Takoma Park, MD Directions

My Primary Teachers and My Shamanic Tradition

In addition to learning directly from my beautiful helping spirits, I have studied with quite a few "ordinary reality" teachers. The two main ones are
(1) Sandra Ingerman
(2) Betsy Bergstrom

TRADITION: The same forces that have long tried to wipe out shamanic practices in the Americas succeeded in eradicating them in my British and Germanic homelands many centuries before. So my work is to reclaim a "broken" or interrupted shamanic heritage. To minimize cultural appropriation and to honor my own ancestors, I began with "cross-cultural" or "core" shamanic practices. My practice has developed into a contemporary Euro-American shamanic revival that incorporates some of my North European lineage, mostly Norse and Celtic. I do not practice American Indian ceremonies.

Key Memberships and Professional Associations

Licensed Minister, Circle of the Sacred Earth
International Alliance of Shamanic Teachers (authorized by Sandra Ingerman)
Compassionate Depossession Instructor (authorized by Betsy Bergstrom)
Society for Shamanic Practitioners
Foundation for Shamanic Studies
Sacred Dance Guild
Paint Branch Unitarian Universalist Church, Adelphi, MD
Green Party

Formal Training and Coursework

• Updates: I maintain contact with Sandra Ingerman & Betsy Bergstrom for the latest changes in their practices.
• Constellation Facilitation Training, March-Sept. 2019 (underway; 168 hours)
• Three-Year Advanced Shamanic Program (Foundation for Shamanic Studies, May 2016-Oct. 2018)
• Medicine for the Earth (Sandra Ingerman, Oct. 7-11, 2015; update of 2002 training)
• The Neuroscience of Change (Dr. Kelly McGonigal, CEU self-study program, 2015; underway)
• Shamanic Journeying for Guidance & Healing, Part 2 (Sandra Ingerman webinar; basic training update, Feb. 17-May 5, 2015)
• Shamanic Journeying for Guidance & Healing, Part 1 (Sandra Ingerman webinar; basic training update, Dec. 2, 2014-Jan. 27, 2015)
• Constellations (Francesca Mason-Boring, Aug. 30-Sept. 1, 2014)
• One-Year Compassionate Depossession Teacher Authorization Program (Betsy Bergstrom, June 2013-June 2014)
• Curse Unraveling (update; Betsy Bergstrom, May 6-11, 2014)
• Compassionate Depossession Intensive (Betsy Bergstrom, April 2013)
• Two-Year Wheel of Life Advanced Program (Betsy Bergstrom, March 2011-Sept. 2012)
• Toltec Shamanism (Ruth Masterson, Oct.-Dec. 2008)
• Advanced Depossession, Curse Unraveling, and Spell Breaking (Betsy Bergstrom, Feb. 2008)
• Compassionate Depossession, Curse Unraveling, and Spell Breaking (Betsy Bergstrom, Feb. 2007)
• The Alchemy of Self-Empowerment: Applying Shamanic Methods in Mental Health Practice (Jacke Schroeder, Nov. 2006)
• Two-Year Authorization Program to Teach Shamanic Practitioners (Sandra Ingerman, 2005-2006)
• Healing with Rocks and Crystals (Herb Stevenson, 2002, 2003)
• Medicine for the Earth (Caroline Kenner, 2002) (de-toxing yourself and the environment)
• Soul Retrieval (Sandra Ingerman through the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, Nov. 2002)
• Two-Week Intensive in Advanced Shamanism and Shamanic Healing (Sandra Ingerman through the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, 2001) (coursework included extractions, psychopomp work, soul retrievals, working with ancestors, crystals, nature spirits, and more)
• Celtic Shamanism (Tom Cowan, 2000)
• The Way of the Shaman (Michael Harner through the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, 1995)

Sense of Self

I love to sing and dance and drum. Like many who live in Takoma Park, Maryland (also called "Berkeley East"), my little home is heated in winter by a delightful corn-burning stove. I've converted my backyard to a native plant food forest and wetland ecosystem with the spring beneath my home. My vision, like Takoma Park itself, pushes the edges of mainstream consciousness and consensus reality.


Moving out of dualistic, "power-over" systems and into the emerging "power-with" paradigm is the central force uniting my views on spirituality, politics, and personal relationships.  Part of questioning dualism is my belief in the need to transcend gender roles.

The alternative to dualism and power-over is often labeled "Both-Andian"; the both-and view invokes far more colors and possibilities than "either/or" dichotomies allow.  I describe my spiritual path as that of a "Both-Andian Unitarian Universalist Shamanic Mystic"  and have engaged core shamanism since the early 1990s.

Stone Baths ("Sweats")

I organized "sweat houses" for large Pagan gatherings from 1995 to 2006, bringing in ceremonial leaders and "pourers" from a variety of traditions (Sun Bear, Norse, Wiccan, and other protocols). I still sometimes water the stones with the help of the Wights and the Norns at these events in my own North European style, which I prefer to call "Stone Baths" in honor of my Anglo-Saxon/Germanic heritage. [Note: Mine are not American-Indian style sweat lodges.] Sorry, private sweats are not available.

Community Activism

My spiritual beliefs inform my political activism, which dates from the 1970s and includes a range of freedom, justice, and ecology movements.

To schedule a healing session or to find out about workshops in the Washington, D.C. area, contact Tyrtle.

To learn more, see Links and Resources.