Note: this is for people who have not previously had a soul retrieval

You have an opportunity to receive a FREE individual Shamanic Soul Retrieval healing as a volunteer client for students in the Shamanic Healers Practicum (SHP) of Life Force Arts Shamanic Training (LFAST) Program. Please see below for an explanation of what happens in an Individual Shamanic Healing Session with LFAST Students.  We have a limited number of free appointments available between June 20 – August 31, 2022. First come, first served.

The session is free. Sessions are approximately 60 minutes long, and take place at Life Force Arts Center, 1609 W Belmont, Chicago. We ask that you fill out a brief evaluation form at the end of the session letting us know about your experience.

I am the teacher of the program and I will be present and supervising during the session. The student healers are mature, professional people, and confidentiality will be respected. Note: to participate, please confirm that you HAVE NOT previously had a soul retrieval.

Please let me know if you are interested in a session. You can call email me at or call me at 773-327-7224 to let me know.

Joan Forest Mage
Founder & Director
Life Force Arts Shamanic Training


General Information about FREE Individual Shamanic Soul Retrieval with LFAST Students


The address is Life Force Arts Center, 1609 W Belmont, Chicago. Please click here for directions. You can park in the Central Savings parking lot, which is just south of Belmont on Ashland. There are big signs in the parking lot saying it is only for customers of the bank; you can park there, because Life Force is a tenant of the bank. If there is a security guard, tell them you are coming to Life Force, which is a tenant of the bank.

Please bring a recording device such as a smartphone  to record the explanation of what the student practitioner sees and does during the shamanic journey meditation, and what soul parts came back. This will help you with the Soul Part Integration process that you do on your own in the days and weeks after the session.

If you have any questions, please contact Joan Forest Mage at 773-327-7224.

Soul Retrieval

Have you ever felt, after some painful experience in your life, that you “never recovered,” you weren’t your “old self,” or that a part of you “died”?  These feelings may indicate what shamans call “soul loss”: a part of your vital energy (soul) left you during a traumatic event, such as an accident, illness, loss of a loved one, or physical, sexual or emotional abuse.   To correct soul loss, a soul retrieval is done.  In the soul retrieval session, the shamanic practitioner (LFAST student) enters into a shamanic journey meditation in which they find and returns lost soul parts and removes energy blockages by using energy work.

What happens in a soul retrieval session?

We begin with an explanation of what we are going to do in the session, and we talk about any questions you might have. This is also a time to share any insights that you gained from the preparation you have done prior to the session (see information on “How to prepare for soul retrieval” below).  For example, some people like to explain how and when they feel they lost soul parts.  It’s completely your choice to share or not, either way is fine: the student practitioners do not need to know where you lost soul parts before they retrieve the soul parts, but sometimes clients like to share this as part of their healing process.

In the tradition of soul retrieval that we follow at LFAST, the practitioner does all the work during the actual session itself. (In the days and weeks following the session, your task will be to continue to integrate your soul parts through meditating, journaling, etc. The student practitioner will explain the integration process during the session.)  You will be lying down on a massage table, and you do not have to do anything, you can just relax.  You are welcome to watch the student practitioner if you want.

To do a healing, the student practitioner enters a meditation called a shamanic journey, usually by listening to a recording of a repetitive drumbeat.  The journey takes about 20 minutes. During the journey, the student practitioner might be sitting, standing, dancing, singing, lying on the ground, or doing energy work in the space above your body. The process does not involve touching the physical body of the client. The journey unfolds like a waking dream in which four types of healing may occur:

  1. Soul Retrieval – lost parts of your vital energy (soul) return
  2. Power Animal Retrieval – the return of part of your vital essence that resembles an animal (a kind of “totem animal”) often associated with physical health
  3. Extraction – removing negative energy
  4. Messages from Guides – information from your inner guiding spirits about how to resolve a problem in your life.  For example, “Tell her to take the job offer.”  However, this is not an intuitive “reading” where you ask questions and the practitioner answers them.  Rather, this is an actual energy work session.

The student practitioner asks their spirit guides to lead them to whatever healing needs to happen.  Almost always there is soul retrieval, power animal retrieval and extraction; sometimes there are messages from guides.

At the end of the journey, if there are soul parts or power animals to return, the student practitioner returns them by blowing into your chakras (energy center) at your heart and crown (top of head).  The student practitioner then rattles around you to seal up the soul parts and does the thanking the spirits song.  Then you can sit up and the student practitioner explains what they experienced on the journey, and what soul parts returned.

If you have a recording device, such as on your cell phone, we highly recommend recording the explanation, since the student practitioner will usually have a lot of information, and it is easy to forget what they said if you are trying to recall it later. If you don’t have a recording device, you may want to take notes on paper, but it can be hard to write as fast as the student practitioner is talking :-).

In the tradition of soul retrieval that we follow, the practitioner does all the work during the actual session itself. In the days and weeks following the session, your task will be to continue to integrate your soul parts through meditating, automatic writing or drawing, etc.  How to do this is explained in this email.



Use meditating, journaling, etc. to do the following:

  1. Recall where and under what circumstances you may have lost soul parts
  2. Consider what your life may be like after the soul parts return.  Get ready, be open, for your life to change and for you to be different.  In what ways would you like to see your life improve?
  3. If possible, tell the people in your life that you may be making changes.
  4. For more information on the theory and process of soul retrieval, you may want to read the book Soul Retrieval by Sandra Ingerman
  5. It is preferable to schedule your soul retrieval so that you will have quiet time afterward to process the session and begin soul part integration. Arrange to have the session for a day and time when you can go home


(Please note that this is a suggested plan.  Each person’s soul part integration process is unique.)

In the first 24 hours after soul retrieval:

  1. Welcome each part home
  2. Give thanks in your own way for this healing.
  3. Take a ceremonial bath. This grounds the energy that has returned to you, and is a rebirth experience for the newly rejoined soul parts.  You might want to use aromatherapy oils, nice candles and especially bath salts, which help ground the energy.
  4. Sing and dance your power animal (very important!)  Use spontaneous movement and vocalizing to create a simple song and dance to call up the power of this spirit guide.  This song and dance will develop into a repeatable form: it will be the same each time you do it. To do this: go into a room by yourself and say, “Power animal, sing and dance through me.”  You will find yourself doing some type of body movement, sounds and words that will express the energy of the power animal. To have a connection with a power animal like this is a wonderful gift!  The power animal brings energy that you need in your life. Once you have a power animal song & dance, please continue doing it every day for the 28 time period after your soul retrieval, and after that continue doing it on a regular basis your whole life, to call forth the power of your animal guide


The Three Questions to ask your Soul Parts

Each day for the next 28 days after soul retrieval, please ask each soul part these questions, using meditating, stream of consciousness writing, stream of consciousness drawing, or other forms of inner reflection:

  1. Why did you leave?
  2. What do you know? (This might be memories or skills.) What gift or knowledge do you bring me?
  3. What do you need to be happy? (Please give serious consideration to acting on suggestions or requests from the soul parts.)

Tell each part that you love them, that you’re glad they’re back, and that you want them to stay.


The student practitioner will be given your contact information (phone and email) so they can contact you for a followup phone call or email to find out how you are doing two days after the session. You will also be given the contact information of the student practitioner.

Please call or email the student practitioner two days after the soul retrieval so the two of you can discuss how you’re feeling, any reactions, questions, etc. you might have.  Thank you, it’s an honor and a privilege to do this work for you.


Ways you can contact soul parts after soul retrieval

There are many ways to contact a soul part.  This is intuitive work, and intuitive information comes to us through the senses of auditory (hearing) visual (seeing) and kinesthetic (feeling). For example, seeing the soul part in your imagination would be visual; hearing words or thoughts in your head would be auditory, and sensing feelings in your body would be kinesthetic. The soul part may communicate with you in any or all of these are ways.

Here are the most common ways to communicate with your soul parts. Any of these methods begins by bringing yourself to a meditative state.  Sit comfortably, relax, close your eyes, and breathe slowly and deeply. Then, silently or out loud, ask the soul part one of the three soul part integration questions: “Why did you leave?  What do you know?  What do you need to be happy?”

Meditation in the 3 Perceptual Modes

  • Visual – You will see pictures in your mind’s eye that answer the question. You will see your soul parts; they will look like yourself at whatever age it left you. For example, your five year old soul part will look the way you did when you were five years old, your teenage soul part will look the way you did as a teenager. You will ask the soul part one of the questions, and you receive the answer in a visual picture. For example, if you ask, “What do you need to be happy?” you may see an ice cream cone.  That would be the soul part saying, “Eating ice cream would make me happy.”
  • Auditory – You will hear a voice inside your head answering the questions.  For example, if you ask, “Why did you leave?” your soul part may answer, “Because Father died and I was sad.”
  • Kinesthetic – You will feel sensations or movement in your body answering the questions.  For example, if you ask, “What do you know?” you may feel your chest area (heart energy center) become light and open; literally “light-hearted.”  This means that soul part knows how to feel happy and light-hearted.


Stream of Consciousness Expression in the 3 Perceptual Modes

  • Stream of Consciousness Writing – You will need a pen and paper.  Ask one of the soul parts one of the three questions, and ask the soul part to write you the answer on the paper. For example, silently or out loud, say, “Twenty year old soul part, what do you know?” Then take pen to paper and begin stream of consciousness writing.  Don’t stop, don’t edit, don’t censor: write down whatever is going through your mind, allowing the soul part to speak through the words on the paper.  Keep writing until you get to the end of the paper.  Then go back and read what you’ve written.  You will see where what you have written changes from random thoughts going through your mind to the voice of the soul part answering the question.
  • Stream of Consciousness Drawing – You will need paper and something to draw with, such as a pen, pencil, crayons, watercolors, chalk, etc.  Ask one of the soul parts one of the three questions, and ask the soul part to draw you the answer on the paper. For example, silently or out loud, say, “Five year old soul part, what do you need to be happy?” Then begin stream of consciousness drawing.  Don’t stop, don’t edit, don’t censor: draw whatever is coming to you, allowing the soul part to express itself through creating the drawing.  Keep drawing until you feel finished.  Then go back and look at what you’ve drawn.  Ask yourself how the drawing is the answer to the question.  For example, if it is a drawing of a guitar, it probably means playing the guitar would make that soul part happy.
  • Stream of Consciousness Body Movement – You will need a space conducive to dance/body movement.  Ask one of the soul parts one of the three questions, and ask the soul part to express the answer through dance/body movement. For example, silently or out loud, say, “Seventeen year old soul part, why did you leave?” Then begin stream of consciousness body movement.  Don’t stop, don’t edit, don’t censor: let the body move in whatever way it wants, allowing the soul part to express itself through body movement.  Keep moving until you feel finished.  Ask yourself, either while you are moving or after you stop moving, how the movement answered the question.  For example, you may find yourself making movements as though pushing away something, meaning that the soul part left because it felt someone or something was imposing


What results can I expect from the soul retrieval?

Some people have very dramatic changes from a soul retrieval -overnight, they’re not depressed anymore, or their physical condition improves 100%. For other people, the effect may be more gradual, such as subtle changes in feeling more relaxed, more energized, better able to make decisions, etc. A good rule of thumb is to look back six months after the soul retrieval session and assess what changes have happened in your life since the healing that you can attribute to the soul retrieval.

Some possible results of soul retrieval

Here are some signs that the soul part energy is back with you.

Feeling, thinking or acting differently than before

  • A physical problem (pain) lessens or goes away
  • Feeling more “whole” or “filled with energy”
  • Colors seeming more vivid
  • Feeling more present in your daily life, more grounded
  • Having an easier time focusing rather than being “spaced out”
  • Feeling happy, content, calm, where before you were depressed or anxious
  • You are able to initiate or finish projects more easily
  • You had been putting off a decision you needed to make or a conversation you needed to have with another person, and now it seems easy to make the decision or have the conversation
  • Addictions lessen or end

People treat you differently

  • People tell you that you have changed, saying that you look happier, more energized, more relaxed, etc.
  • They notice you more, and pay attention to what you are telling them (signs that you are more “present” to them)

Aspects of the past

  • Memories coming back
  • Resolution of an internal conflict (example: you felt guilty or resentful about something and since the soul retrieval that incident has resolved for you)

You may also receive some type of sign. For example, if your Power Animal was a Hawk, and was returned to you, and that day you see

  • a live hawk flying above you
  • a movie,TV show, video on Facebook, etc. with a hawk
  • a hawk tattoo on someone’s arm

How many soul parts will I get back?

Most people have several parts missing. The student practitioner will bring back whatever parts the guides lead them to. They will ask for whatever healing needs to happen. Clients usually receive from 4 – 8 soul parts. The student practitioners will notbring back parts that don’t want to come back or that would give you any trouble.

How often do I need a soul retrieval?

Soul retrieval itself does not need to be done very often in a lifetime. It is not like psychotherapy, where you might go every week for weeks or months. In this way, soul retrieval is one of the most efficient forms of healing every created, and also one of the most ancient.

If a person continues to lose energy after a soul retrieval, this usually indicates a problem with core belief (ex., the person believes he/she should give away his/her energy, doesn’t deserve to have energy, etc.) or understanding of energetic protection (becoming more aware of the energy field around his/her body so it is not drained or lost).

What are Power Animals, Clan Animals and Helping Animals?

There are three basic types of Animal Guides:

  • Power Animals
  • Helping Animals
  • Clan Animals

Each one of these is part of your own vital essence that resembles an animal.

Power Animal is your best buddy in the spirit realm. It may be any type of animal, such as a flying creature, swimming one or land animal. It is always a single animal. Your Power Animal goes with you wherever you go, bolstering your energy and protecting you. A Power Animal is one of your main spirit guides.

You may be surprised that your Power Animal is not a “trendy” Power Animal such as Bear, Eagle or Dolphin, but rather Prairie Dog or Ladybug! The important thing is that you can trust this animal guide completely, and s/he will take care of you in a profound energetic way.

Helping Animal is a guide who is an animal who appears to help you learn something, for a certain time period, or with a certain project. For example, Horse may come to teach you for a time period of one week about making swift decisions; Turtle may come for a time period of a month to teach you how to relax. Or, a Helping Animal may come to help you on a permanent basis when you need to carry out a certain task. For example, Owl may appear whenever you need to find lost objects, telling you where they are, or Wolf may give you advice about relationships.

Clan Animal appears as a group of animals and people. A Clan is all the animals of that type that have ever lived, and all the people who have ever participated in that animal’s energy at any time or place. Being part of a Clan is being part of an association of all those people and animals; it is like being in an association of people who all do the same business, such as medical doctors are part of the American Medical Association or plumbers are part of the plumbers union. A Clan will appear as several of the type of animal, plus one or more of the following:

  1. People dressed like the animal, such as shamans wearing that animal’s skin
  2. Beings who are half human, half that type of animal
  3. Several of the animals accompanied by gods, goddesses or other spirit guides associated with that animal

A Clan is associated with the mission one has in life, the type of work one contributes to the world. For example, if what you contribute is your bravery and power, you may be part of Lion Clan, or if gracefulness is what you bring to the community, Deer may be your Clan.



  • June 30, 2022
    8:00 am - 5:00 pm


Venue Phone: 773-327-7224

1609 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, Illinois, 60657, United States


Life Force Arts Ensemble (LFAE) is a company of visual, literary and performing artists who commune with soul and spirit to create transformation through the arts based in the Life Force Arts Method, a powerful psychological and spiritual tool for building positive relationships from one’s inner world to the outer world. LFAE’s art exhibits create the sacred space for our original performances, which combine dance, vocal and instrumental music, acting, storytelling and poetry, channeling powerful spiritual energy to transform, heal and enlighten our audiences.

Life Force Arts Ensemble was founded in 1988 as a non-profit, tax exempt 501 (c) 3 organization to present the dance and performance work of company founder and director Joan Forest Mage. The organization opened its own venue in Chicago in 2008.