|Gerry Starnes, began his career journey in 1977 when, after earning a M.Ed. in School Psychology, he became a counselor working primarily with young people at serious risk for self-injury and elopement.
Under the direction and on-going training of psychiatrists and psychologists, he witnessed the effects of both the standard behavioral and medical models of treatment, as well as the new models of holistic medicine then emerging. After a few years, he recognized that something significant was missing from traditional therapeutic modalities.
The more than thirty years since then have been something of a quest, as he has explored ways to manifest his conviction that there was, in fact, a mode of healing that could address the needs of Western society on a level that was accessible to everyone. Trusting his intuition to guide him; he found himself following a serpentine route that lead him through many teachings and traditions. Along the way he began to sense that however different they might seem, they shared a common organic connection or grounding.
In 1996, Gerry put his growing experience and knowledge into a new approach: developing Internal Dialog using journal writing as a vehicle. The Conversations Within Workshop (www.journal-writing.com) presented this approach to a world-wide audience. He also augmented and supported this material by creating and presenting Journal workshops.
This website is now available as an eBook!
Over the next few years, he developed a series of workshops called Being Limitless, which further explored the energetic nature of “BE-ing,” and was based on previous work with such varied influences as Francisco Cole, Barbara Joy, Barbara Brennan, aikido (he holds a black belt in shin shin toitsu aikido) and other energetic healing modalities.
In 2000, he completed Trance Dance facilitator training under Wilbert Alix, then Director of The Natale Institute in America, and found a dramatically deeper connection with contemporary shamanism, as well as a vehicle for work that matched his own values. He is now among the most active TranceDance facilitators in the world.
He founded the first shamanic journey circle in Austin in 2003, which has now grown to more than four circles per month. During that time, he also began to offer individual sessions based on his experience with both traditional and alternative healing modalities.
In 2005, Gerry co-founded and became the Executive Director of the Ravens Grove Foundation for Healing. This not for profit organization focuses on the application of complementary techniques to the issue of trauma and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A most important focus is on the effects of trauma from sexual abuse and war.
In 2012, he completed Usui Reiki Level III, and often includes Reiki energy techniques with previous shamanic energy healing techniques.
Gerry currently offers classes, workshops and retreats statewide based on contemporary shamanic and traditional personal development practices. He is also a founding member of the Society for Shamanic Practitioners.
And the journey continues…
These basic tenets comprise the Bones and Spirit underlying all healing and teaching in classes and workshops.
Respect for all beings
From the shamanic perspective, everything is alive and deserves to be honored and respected. Not only are those beings that we have agreed to be "alive," all things have spirit and so are also living: elements, stones, places, concepts, memories, dreams ... everything.
Humans do not have a special place in the cycle of life. There is no room for superiority, slavery and wanton destruction ... no room for dominance of any over the rest. Teacher and student are the same; healer and afflicted are the same ... and everything is equal to the "least" among us. We are all students and all need to be healed.
Within that understanding lies real Humility, and Humility is the doorway to true Power.
Integrity and authenticity in all actions
We are here ... now, and our time is very limited. It makes no sense to live and act without being authentic, without being as fully who we are as we can possibly be. A rich, full and happy life must come from an understanding of one's Self and one's place in the world, and that understanding has to be expressed from the core desire to be as fully Alive as one can be. To live less fully is to live "half a life."
Living in Integrity requires fully unified actions that emerge from an established value system. Without a system of values and core beliefs, the actions of any individual cannot be truly consistent, either for good or ill.
To live life in such a way that all actions have integrity and are total expressions of one's authentic Self requires a total engagement of that individual from moment to moment. It is from that stance – from that way of being in the world – that Power is derived.
You have your own sources of wisdom and healing
We arrive on this planet fully equipped to live in integrity, authenticity, in Power and with Spirit. We were not short-changed by the Creator. Rather we were blessed with an amazing array of capabilities, most of which we have either never learned to use fully or have forgotten.
From this understanding, the Facilitator Teacher knows that all that can be done is to get out of the way and guide the client or student to find the source for themselves. Until that connection is made, no one can be free ... including the Teacher.
Healing is teaching; teaching is healing
Actions that create healing – mental, physical, spiritual and emotional healing – derive from examining one's life and re-creating that life to be more in harmony with one's path and Spirit. In that sense, we learn our illnesses and diseases, and we unlearn them to become whole again. Through seeking health, we learn and by learning we heal ourselves.
The teacher/healer who thinks otherwise is doing more harm than good. The purpose of shamanic healing is to bring students or clients back to themselves, and to assist them to live more harmoniously with their path and Spirit.
Gerry Starnes, M.Ed.