Shaman Gretchen Crilly McKay Appears on June 29 "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 healer Gretchen Crilly McKay – who studied shamanism in Swaziland, Africa -- to the show, where they talk about McKay’s initiation experience in the tradition of the Zulu.

Portland, OR, June 29, 2010 --( Streaming live on the Co-Creator Radio Network ( on Tuesday, June 29, 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 – or sangoma as she’s known in her tradition – Gretchen Crilly McKay 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.

In this episode, McKay discusses her traditional kuthwasa (initiation) experiences in Swaziland, Africa, under the mentorship of Zulu shaman, P.H. Mntshali. According to McKay, her admitted love affair with Africa, the “home” of her soul, began decades ago. A consultation there with sangoma P.H. Mntshali—who would become her mentor—revealed that her life had been difficult because she had not followed the path her ancestors had chosen for her. Through the traditional initiatory path of the sangoma, McKay became the woman she was meant to be. McKay now has a private shamanic practice is in Southern California where she seamlessly combines traditional African practices, like throwing the bones, with cross-cultural shamanic practices, like soul retrieval, extraction, and healing with spiritual light, to serve her clients and students.

Gretchen Crilly McKay has been a shamanic practitioner and teacher for more than 15 years, studying with master shamans in the U.S. and Africa. She has studied extensively with the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, Sandra Ingerman, and Tom Cowan. In 2001 she completed her kuthwasa initiation in Swaziland, Africa, and graduated in a traditional ceremony as a sangoma under the mentorship of Zulu shaman P.H. Mtshali. McKay uses the African divination system of throwing the bones to diagnose physical, emotional, and spiritual issues and provides shamanic healing through spiritual extraction, soul retrieval and healing with spiritual light. She has a private practice in Southern California where she sees clients and offers workshops and shamanic training. Gretchen works closely with the spirits of nature to co-create balance and harmony within and without. Her extensive calendar of classes, apprenticeship & mentoring, and two year advanced training can be found at

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