Shaman-Healer Michael Dunning Appears on June 22 “Why Shamanism Now?” Radio Show Initiation Series

On her radio show "Why Shamanism Now? A Practical Path to Authenticity,” teacher, author, and founder of the Last Mask Center for Shamanic Healing Christina Pratt welcomes shaman-healer Michael Dunning on the show as part of the “Initiation Series: Curing Our Cultural Sickness.” Dunning talks about his exceptional and transformational initiation experiences with a yew tree in Scotland.

Portland, OR, June 18, 2010 --( Streaming live on the Co-Creator Radio Network ( on Tuesday, June 22, at 11 a.m. Pacific time/2 p.m. Eastern time, on her show "Why Shamanism Now?: A Practical Path to Authenticity,” shaman and founder of the Last Mask Center for Shamanic Healing Christina Pratt talks to shaman-healer Michael Dunning about his exceptional initiation experiences with a Yew tree in Scotland and how they transformed him as part of Pratt’s “Initiation Series: Curing our Cultural Sickness.” This series features stories from a diverse range of contemporary initiation experiences—that have functioned to truly transform individuals into shamans—helping listeners’ to remember (or learn about) what initiation truly means.

According to Dunning, he gradually became aware of his calling as a shaman-healer following a near-death encounter with an elemental spirit in the far north of Scotland. A second near-death experience occurred several years later that entirely destroyed his health. Dunning began to experience regular visions -- prolonged out-of-body states and intense physical pain. Managing his daily life became a great challenge. He was finally rescued by a friend who lived in a small cottage close to a 2000 year-old female yew tree. This marked the beginning of a ten-year period of healing and a shamanic initiation through nature, which took place under the vast enclosure of the tree. Listeners will have the opportunity to hear Dunning’s fascinating story.

Michael Dunning was born in Glasgow, Scotland. After graduating from the Edinburgh School of Art he taught himself to play the double-bass and by the early 1990s was performing in Europe and Japan with the award winning experimental musical theater group, The New Theater (TNT). He has also worked for a non-profit arts organization in Edinburgh, where for 14 years, he developed arts programs for adults with a history of mental health problems. In 2003 Dunning emigrated to US. where he teaches yewshamanism throughout New England. He also practices and teaches as a biodynamic craniosacral therapist. Dunning believes that the yew tree was once regarded by indigenous shaman-healers as a great source of occult knowledge holding an ancient and embryonic language of healing and rejuvenation. An account of Dunning's experiences under the yew tree can be read in the book, Soul Companions: Conversations with Contemporary Wisdom Keeper, A Collection of Encounters with Spirit, by Karen Sawyer. Dunning since discovered that craniosacral therapy, and particularly the biodynamic model, provided him with a contemporary healing modality that related to some key embryonic aspects of his shamanic work.

Christina Pratt is an authentic, non-traditional contemporary shaman. In practice since 1990, she specializes in mending the soul and transforming the parts of life that feel impossible. A teacher of exceptional clarity, humor, and inspiration, Pratt brings the power of shamanism into the practical grasp of anyone willing to take responsibility for improving the quality of their life. Her well-received book, An Encyclopedia of Shamanism (Rosen), is an 800-page, two-volume set with over 750 in-depth entries that clearly discuss the basic concepts of shamanism, methods, and traditions of over 50 different shamanic peoples. Pratt is the founder of the Last Mask Center for Shamanic Healing in Portland, OR, and New York, NY, creator of the original Foundations of Shamanism and Shamanic Healing course at the University of Minnesota, and a frequent and honored speaker for the American Holistic Medical Association.

"Why Shamanism Now?", a live internet talk radio with host Christina Pratt, airs Tuesdays at 11 a.m. Pacific time/2 p.m. Eastern time Prior episodes from "Why Shamanism Now" can be downloaded for free from the iTunes library ( Pratt also talks about Shamanic Healing on You Tube (

For more information on Christina Pratt, the Last Mask Center for Shamanic Healing, and workshops and classes with Pratt, or to order An Encyclopedia of Shamanism at a special discounted rate, visit For additional information or to arrange an interview with Pratt, please contact Linda Woznicki, 845-417-8811,

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Linda Woznicki