July 1, 2018

Becoming A Shaman

Kelle Sparta

In this episode, Kelle talks about what it means to be a shaman and the sometimes arduous journey that a person undertakes to become a shaman. She describes the “calling” a budding shaman experiences, the dark places in one’s own soul that must be brought to light and healed, and the never-ending path of looking into the dark places to then help others go through their own healing process. As Kelle explains, the spiritual path of healing that one travels, whether becoming a shaman or not, uncovers the authentic self we are all born with that becomes muddied by the events of our human existence.



For more information about Kelle Sparta or Kelle Sparta Enterprises:


Driveabout (Full Version) https://youtu.be/biD21gy6qZk

–Written by: Kelle Sparta

–Performed by: Kelle Sparta and Daniel Singer

–Produced by: Daniel Singer

Listen to the podcast here



Becoming A Shaman With Kelle Sparta

Kelle, are you ready to start again?


What should we talk about this time?

One of the big questions that I get asked all the time is, “How do you become a shaman? What’s a shaman? How did you get on this path?”

Let’s start there. We’re early into the series here. You’ve worn so many hats. One of them is the shaman. Is it even possible to summarize who Kelle Sparta is?

I’ll give you the short story. My mother was a new ager and she raised me in the new age movement. According to her, I was talking to ghosts in my crib. I’ve been doing this my whole life. At the age of six, she brought home EST, which was a precursor to the Landmark Forum. She brought home countless guided meditation and spiritual tapes. We listened to JZ Knight, Abraham Hicks, you name it. Messages From Michael, I read every book. She sent me to psychic development classes.

This was throughout your formative years?

All throughout my childhood. I developed my skills very early on. I then got married to an atheist and he was against all things spiritual. I ignored them while I was married. Shortly, before the divorce, I went out and got my Reiki certification. I went and took Shiatsu training, and got back into the whole thing. I started on my own personal growth path. I’m hardcore at that point.

When I got my divorce, my business partner said I went off and joined the circus because I literally dumped my life. I was 28 years old. I hit my Saturn return. I looked at my life and I had a midlife crisis at 28. I said, “I hate my life.” I had the American dream. I had the big house, the dog, and the trophy husband. Not kids, thankfully, because I was about to dump everything. I was a successful business owner and a pillar of my community, and I was running a nonprofit. I had everything that everybody said was the trappings of success and I hated my life.

I was in a never-ending power struggle with my husband. I was burnt out in my job. The nonprofit I was working on was in challenge and I was turning it around. I was tired and I was not happy. I was pissed because I had been sold a bill of goods by the American dream that said, “This will make you happy,” and I was not.

I said, “This didn’t work,” and I chopped it all off. I divorced my husband. I sold my business and my house. I moved out of state to live with a bunch of people I had met at the Renaissance Fair. It wasn’t a hippie commune, but it was a bunch of roommates who all worked at the Renaissance Fair. As it turned out, coincidentally, they were all freaking shamans. I had never heard of shamanism in all of my metaphysical new age and cult. Paganism did not come up in all of the stuff I had studied for all those years.

That was the first introduction to it for you.

It was my first introduction to it. I ended up in a magical circle with four other people. We did ritual and energy healing work on one another. We spent four years living in what I now refer to as the magical house because magic was happening every day all the time. We were all on our spiritual paths. We were all doing our own work. We were going to events. We were bringing stuff home that we learned from each other. We were helping each other along the journey. It was a communal process of evolution that was happening in that house. We had people who moved in and out of the house during the four years I was there. All of them brought their own piece of spiritual stuff into the mix.

You’ll find this funny. We had house rules that were magic rules. All of them came from something that was messed up. Rule number one is no mucking about with time and space within the confines of the property. One of our people screwed that up and people were late. No summoning anything bigger than your head. If you summon it, it’s your job to banish it. No opening doors and windows that you don’t know where they go. If doors and windows open of their own accord, do not wait to see what happens, inform the house warden immediately. Always take out the trash.

Was that magical as well?

Yes and physical. It was both.

Your journey at that point started taking you down a path that you had not traveled before. For those who are in a similar situation and they don’t know what it is, what is a shaman?

If you ask 100 shamans what a shaman is, you’ll get 100 different answers. Shamanism is not a defined term. The word shaman comes out of Russia. Every tribal culture everywhere in the world has its own version of a shaman. The way that I see shamanism is that a shaman serves as the translator or bridge between the physical world and the spiritual world. That person is in service to a community or tribe. Each shaman will have different gifts that they use because we all have natural abilities.

For me, I’m a healer. That’s my thing. I carry the energy of change with me wherever I go. This isn’t just what I do. It’s who I am. The journey brings you to be the person that you become as a shaman. People always think, “I could never do that.” Nobody could do it before they walk the journey. I couldn’t do it when I first started and I was talking to ghosts in my crib. When I was getting married at 21, there was no way in crap that I could have done the things that I did and that I’ve done in the interim without going through the path that I took to get there.

You keep saying, “Walk the journey.” What does that mean?

People are like, “I want to be a shaman.” I’m like, “No, you don’t.” Shamanism is a calling. It literally comes, grabs you by the throat, throws you on the ground and says, “You’re mine.” I didn’t want to be a shaman. I never wanted to be a shaman. I didn’t even know what a shaman was. The journey of being a shaman is a never-ending path of personal growth and looking at the dark places that you don’t want to look at in your life, and bringing light to them so that you can heal them, then doing that for others.

For me, that’s awesome. I want to dive deep into the mucky dark underpinning places and then I want to mother you through them because I’m a Scorpio with a Cancer moon. That’s my happy place, but not everybody wants to do that. If you want to walk the path of the shaman, you have to stand in your own power. The only way to stand in your power is to deal with your crap. That’s what a shaman does. Do they do the things of connecting with nature, doing journeys, and all the things that you think of as the bright shiny cool stuff? Yes, absolutely. You can’t do those things until you walk that path because everything you do will be undermined if you don’t.

This brings up a whole bunch of questions for me, but I want to tie it back because this is interesting. In the previous episode, we talked a lot about self-worth, self-love and confidence. It sounds like those are important in what we’re talking about here. I’m sure you’ve been asked this a thousand times. What are those characteristics that you need to have in order to be a shaman?

We talked about the first one, which is control over yourself and your own power. It means you’ve got to clear out all the limiting beliefs and all the stories that you tell yourself that hold you back from your power. You also have to have the ability to hold focus and choose consciously and powerfully. We talked about that in the previous episode too. There’s also the willingness to go into the dark places which is what I mentioned.

That’s the scary stuff.

Becoming A Shaman: The journey of being a shaman is a never ending path of personal growth, a never ending path of looking at the dark places that you don’t want to look at in your life and bringing light to them so that you can heal them, then doing that for others.


It’s the scary stuff. It’s the, “I might die.” You always think you might die. The fact is that you might, not the physical you, but there is something known as a shamanic death. Shamanic death means the death of the ego. The part of you that you thought was the real you but wasn’t. We start off our lives as children and as our authentic selves, and then things happen. We develop coping mechanisms to deal with those things. We layer different things on top of ourselves. Those things create belief structures that are not our authentic selves.

We start to buy into our own story that we’re telling the world about who we are. We think, “This is me.” No, it’s not. Part of the job is about tearing those belief structures off or pulling them off and peeling them away until you get down to what is the real you that you started with. That requires going into those hard dark places that scare us.

My mind is blowing up a little bit right now. When you talk about a shamanic death and that being the death of the ego, isn’t that something that we’re striving for, to remove the ego? Is shamanic death a good thing or a bad thing?

Shamanic death is a good thing. It doesn’t feel like a good thing.

That’s what I’m thinking here.

Think about it, your ego is your personality. Your ego has consciousness. It says, “I want to exist. It has a survival mechanism just like anything else.” It resists dying. It thinks it’s protecting you. It’s a survival mechanism not just for the ego but also for yourself because you put that ego in place to protect you. It did for a long while most of the time. You survived your childhood by using these coping mechanisms.

You’ve had to build these layers and on top, covering the authentic component of yourself.

Somewhere along the line, you got told that the authentic you weren’t okay. You tried to become something that was okay. There’s this need to pull away from these coping mechanisms that we put in place. Because we put them in place as children, they often lack logic. They make sense from a child’s mind, but they don’t make sense from an adult’s mind.

They stick around because we don’t question them. They become assumption-level things. You don’t wonder why we don’t float up off the ground when we walk because we assume gravity works. This level is what I’m talking about. The assumptive level of who we are. These things that we know are us. There are small shamanic deaths that we go through which are, “I’m not who I thought I was and I choose to be someone else,” and then there are big shamanic deaths, which I refer to as foundational deconstruction.

The painful ones.

I don’t know if painful is the right term. They’re disorienting ones because what happens there is you start pulling out the foundation of who you believe yourself to be. What happens when you do that is that you lose your grounding because there’s no longer a foundation. It takes all of your brain’s processing power to manage your day just getting through the rote activities because all your background processing time is being taken up with figuring out who the hell you are.

You have to think about the things you didn’t have to think about because you’re thinking about other things. 

If you don’t pay attention closely enough, you’re going to whack your shoulder on the doorway as you walk through it because you didn’t center yourself. The things we do every day, all day long, and year after year, we don’t think about it all, and suddenly you have to think about them all until you get your foundation put back in place.

When I went through that, I would have sworn to you that doing something 1,000% was very much an integral part of who I was in the world. When I put that foundation back in place, that cornerstone that had been a cornerstone of my identity before was not even in the structure because I had given up being perfect so that I could be human. There are different levels of shamanic death that happen. The more you can get comfortable with the idea of it, the better you do in the process.

We talked about going into dark places as one of the characteristics. Are there any more?

Yes. There’s the strength and will. It’s the willingness to feel the fear and do it anyway because there’s a lot of fear. People looked at me when I went on a walkabout. People would say, “You’re so brave.” You’re right. I am brave, but I am not brave in this because I feel very called and led. I don’t have fear. You can only be brave if you have fear. There’s a need to develop your courage as part of the process.

You need a healthy dose of recklessness because the fact of the matter is that doing this work is one initiation after another, which is jumping off one cliff after another and not knowing where you’re going to end up. You also have to have that willingness to die and be reborn over and over again shamanically. You have to have a knowledge deep within yourself that you die and blow yourself up occasionally, which also happens. It’s not the same thing, by the way. In either case, you will be able to put yourself back together again because there’s that competency piece we talked about last time.

This doesn’t sound terrifying at all. If somebody says, “That sounds like fun to me.” 

They’re nuts.

I didn’t want to make that judgment but yes. Should that happen, how would they go about starting on that journey?

The process of starting on a shamanic journey is the process of starting on working on yourself. No shaman worth their salt is going to try and skip over the personal growth process before they go into the magic side of it. If you do, you short-change yourself in the end. The very first thing you need to do is start digging out those pieces that are cracks in the container that we talked about last time. The very first thing is to dig out all those belief structures that are creating the cracks in the container.

You know those buttons that if somebody pushes act as triggers that send you flying off the handle and screaming at somebody for spilling a cup of milk. Suddenly, you’re this raging lunatic. You got to pull the power out of those triggers and remove them. You have to uninstall those buttons because you blame the person who pushed them and say, “You made me feel this way.” No, they didn’t.

You put them there.

You put the button there. All they did was say, “Did you know there’s a button here?” I can look at you and say, “You’re purple. I can’t believe how purple you are. It’s disgusting how purple you are.” You will be laughing your ass off. You would be like, “I don’t know what that girlfriend problem is because I am not purple. Even if I was purple, what would be wrong with being purple? Purple is a great color. What the hell is your problem, woman?”

Becoming A Shaman: There are different levels of shamanic death that happen. The more you can get comfortable with the idea of it, the better you do in the process.


If I replace the word purple with fat, ugly, lazy, stupid, crazy, whatever your button is, suddenly you’re a flaming lunatic screaming at me because I’ve hurt your feelings. I didn’t do anything except call you purple. You’re the one with the button. The reason you don’t go off on purple is because you don’t think you’re purple and purple isn’t bad. In order to have a button, you have to both believe that you are the thing and that the thing is bad.

You have to give the power to the trigger in order for the trigger to be powerful.

The process of claiming yourself is about claiming your space saying, “I have a right to exist.” It’s setting your boundaries and saying, “Fuck off. Get out of my space.” Owning your power and saying, “I have a right to my power and I can be trusted with it.” It means I’ve drained that well of rage that I have from all of those triggers so that I don’t lay waste to everyone around me. Internalizing your sense of value so that you never have to ask for validation again, which starts the process of self-love. The next stage is pulling the power out of those buttons and then uninstalling them.

All of these are just the starter to start on the path.

That’s the foundation.

That’s before you even start walking.

Before you even start doing the magic. I would teach you magic along the way. There are some basic skills that you can develop.

There are some that will probably help you along the way to heal and calm yourself, and things like that along the way.

Reiki is a great example. I always recommend that people get certified in Reiki while they’re going through this process. I call it training wheels for energy users because it’s a great system that doesn’t take a lot to understand. It allows you to do a lot of work on yourself and on others and to trade. Getting that energy work done regularly amplifies your energetic process. I recommend that you learn how to clear your energy field, how to shield, and how to protect your house because you need to make sure that you’re in a safe solid space.

This goes back to the containers that we talked about.

If you want to do any magic at all, shamanic or not, you need to have the ability to hold your power, coalesce that power inside of a solid container, give it focus and direction, and be willing to let it go and come into fruition in the world. In order for you to work in a safe and solid way, you need a solid container that you can know how to create.

You learn how to create a basic circle that allows you to operate safely within it. It’s the most important thing ever for beginners because you don’t want things messing with you. That means you want to create a safe container for your house too. The reason for that is that as you get better at energy work, you become more visible on the astral. When you become visible on the spirit plane, things notice you.

You become bright and shiny.

They come to see what’s going on. These are basic safety skills. It’s basic 101 practical skills. There’s a process to becoming magical, whether it’s a shamanic path, Wiccan path, hermetic path, druid path, or whatever path you want to take that puts you in the magical realms. There’s a process in developing your base understanding of the realm itself, yourself, and what you can expect of yourself as well as the players in the field. It’s just smart. Take a couple of years. Figure that stuff out. Get that stuff down before you decide to try to astral project.

Put on your training wheels first. Let’s slide into ask Kelle here.

I had this conversation with somebody I have been talking to on a shamanism group on Facebook. He has been practicing with the Rosicrucian. In his world, most of the shamans come out of voodoo and there’s a very different way of being. He doesn’t want to walk that path. The Rosicrucians told him that he could astral project it any time. It’s not a problem. If he got in over his head, his guys would be there to protect him.

I’m like, “That’s a pretty Pollyanna approach.” He’s like, “Why do you say that?” I said, “Think about it for a minute. If you can be possessed while you are in your body, how much easier is it to possess you when you are out of your body? Are you putting up protections around your body before you leave it?” “No. They say that I can find my way back.” I’m like, “You can find your way back. There’s a silver cord that you can follow right back to your body. No problem. What if somebody else is in it? Do you have the skills to kick them out? If you’re out of your body and they’re in it. I have got some mad skills on that and that would be a challenge for me. WTF dude. Don’t fucking do that. That’s a bad idea.”

The idea that your spirit guys will get you out of anything you go into is taking a single bodyguard with you into the land of the Crips and the Bloods and spitting on both of their houses, and then saying, “Protect me.” Get serious. That’s not necessarily going to be enough. It depends on where you go. Will it save you in a lot of instances? Sure. It depends on how badass your guides are. Who knows? This is the sort of thing that I’m talking about. People come into these places and they think that they can play. Sometimes you can, but you don’t know when you can and when you can’t because you don’t know where you are. Maybe you’re on a playground and maybe you’re in the middle of a biker bar.

Let’s talk about what people can do to dig further into this. We’ve talked a lot about shamanism and the journey that we have to walk as individuals. What more can people do to dive into here? Is there anything you can offer there?

We talked about having to walk that personal path and doing your personal work first. I have a program designed to get you there. I spent 40 years of my life in personal growth and development in the spiritual world doing all of this. The big problem with that world is that you take a two-hour class here and a two-hour class there. You learn this section with this person and that section with that person. You missed key elements somewhere along the way, and then you wonder why you can’t make it to your next level.

What I did as I went through this process of 40 years of study is I codified the process of what it takes to get from one stage to the next, and to be able to make that process move forward. That couple of years I was talking about typically takes people twenty years, if they get there at all. What I’ve managed to do is to compress that process down to a year for each of those ten years. I’ve created those programs, such that I have managed to put into place a way for people to get through that in a very efficient fashion.

I’ve set it up on a rolling enrollment with group coaching calls so that people can see a little bit of what’s ahead and get reminded of what’s behind. Because it is a holistic process, they get to learn it in a holistic fashion. The first year of that program is called Mastering Spiritual Evolution, and the second year is called Mastering Inner Healing because that’s what it’s about. If you go to MasteringSpiritualEvolution.com, you can learn all about that program. It is an in-depth deep dive into your personal stuff.

When you step into the process, you enter into the morphic field of the group. That group energetic has this gestalt and movement associated with it from all the people who have been doing it before. You literally get a turbo charge from joining the group. If you think that this is a path that you want to go on and you’re one of those people who are nuts, and you think that you would like to take this and you want to do it efficiently because it’s an efficient path and it’s hardcore, then I would recommend taking a look at that Mastering Spiritual Evolution Program.

Whether that path leads you to shamanism or not, it’s this work that you should be doing.

Becoming A Shaman: The process of claiming yourself is about claiming your space.

If you want to create a life that you can love, if you want to live powerfully in the world, if you want to get rid of your buttons, anything along those lines, these two years are good for that. You’ll get a little bit of extra fun and energetic stuff along the way.

There was one other thing I wanted to mention. We talked about your journey and your walkabout specifically. I want to mention to the audience that our theme song for our show is a song that you found in your walkabout. You wrote and performed it.

The song is called Driveabout because I did my walkabout in my car. For those of you who don’t know, a walkabout is an Aboriginal term from Australia. It means to walk out into the world until you find yourself. In Aboriginal culture, that means going out into the desert because that’s where they live. In my case, it was driving all over the country and landing in different places.

I wrote that song while I was on the road. I drove 13,000 miles and I was on the road for a year. I was living from my car and on the kindness of strangers who took me in along the path. The song is interesting because I wrote the lyrics. I was dating a guy at the time who was a sound engineer and he had a recording studio in his house. One of us played my drum for that.

If he has played the drums, we got to give him credit. 

It’s Daniel Singer. He might have played the drums. He definitely did the recording for me. I said, “I don’t have music. Would you write it for me?” He’s like, “You know what the music is, just sing it.” He’s like, “I’m going to hit the record button and you just sing it, and you’ll figure it out.” I opened my mouth and I sang the song. I had no idea what the song was going to be and I sang and channeled it. I went back and listened to it, and I realized that the words I had written were the actual words of what I was telling other people about my journey, but they weren’t what was going on inside of my head, all the fears, insecurities, and all of the stuff that I wasn’t saying out loud.

It was the outside stuff, not the inside stuff.

I went back again a couple of weeks later and I recorded the harmony over the top, which was all of the niggly little things going on in my head that were not being spoken aloud because I wanted to be transparent and I wanted to share that part of myself, and I did that through the song.

That’s awesome. It’s a beautiful song. As soon as you played it for me, I’m like, “That’s perfect for this.” It’s all about the journey, getting through stuff, and filtering out those harmonies that are there in the back of our heads. That’s all that we have time for this episode. Be sure to join us next time as we delve even deeper into the magical world. 


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