Updated: Jul 1
Last weekend marked the end of the course on Compassionate Depossession taught by Betsy Bergstrom. I can say there have only been a handful, of maybe 3 courses, that I would call life changing, this course was one of those three courses.
What is Compassionate Depossession
Compassionate depossession is a process where a practitioner converses with a ‘suffering being’ or a being that has not gone to their next step and is attached to a person usually causing that person some level of discomfort ranging from: anger, mood swings, unusual tastes, lack of excitement, etc.
These suffering beings can range from ghosts of humans who did not cross over, land spirits, elementals, dragons, ET’s, faeries, etc.
My story starts several years ago when I worked at a supermarket, I was taking a coworker home who didn’t have a car and we drove through this ‘fog’ that really was just a small cloud in the middle of the road that was so ‘off’ in its placement it felt as if it was waiting for something. I felt at that moment of going through that something was different about that fog, and over the years and through all that I’ve seen and experienced I learned not to doubt what I feel. I was also really sick at the time with a rapidly failing gallbladder.
I got really dizzy; it was to the point I could hardly stand without feeling like I was going to topple over, which in all fairness was definitely associated with the gallbladder but it was worse than before.
I sought out a Shamanic Practitioner who was trained in compassionate depossession by Betsy. The process rung true to me and I felt that what she said, while a bit foreign to me seemed 100% plausible and I could sense the truth in the experience. I knew that I had to learn.
I felt apprehensive about it though, I almost didn’t take it. It took me registering several hours before the deadline.
What I learned
Obviously, I can’t share everything I learned in a 30-hour class, not only because I am not a trained teacher so it’s not my place to share the actual processes and steps of a depossession, but I think it’s actually best to share my experience. I will share one thing about this course – this isn’t like a movie on exorcism. No drama, this is about honoring the being, the client, and the process.
It turns out my entire life seemed to have been building me up to this process. I have always been ‘weird.’ I remember when I was single digits years old (maybe 8), I started a notebook, I can still see it in my minds eye, even though it’s long gone. I had cut and pasted out pictures of skulls I got from a national geographic magazine. I don’t remember my intention for this notebook, but I remember my poor mother being really worried about me. I always said they looked happy as if they were smiling.
I was also drawn to stories with rich shamanic teachings many of which I made my mom read me thousands of times. One of which would also point me in the direction of my ‘gatekeeper’ guide who would traverse this work with me during these two extended weekends.
I also was drawn to an animal totem spirit that would help that I wouldn’t have consciously picked for myself – in fact I went into the journey thinking it was bear that would be guiding me but when I got to bear in the journey with my gatekeeper, bear wasn’t the best suited for me; a childhood connection again popped up for me.
Those who knew me in school also knew I also had an obsession with the grim reaper and skeletons, death wasn’t unknown to me, I felt as if I had danced with this energy for most, if not all my life. It’s not that I was surrounded by death I wasn’t, I mean besides some animal companions dying and having to process that.
I have almost always believed that death wasn’t the end but a transition to which when one dies, they can sometimes support us better in death than they can in life.
Anyways, the teachings of this class really tied into some of the other shamanic teachings that I had taken in the past, really bringing things ‘home.’
I found this course to be incredibly moving, intimate, and vitally important. If spirits can attach to people, which they can. Most always they are confused or worried that they don’t deserve the next step for injustices or unfinished business from this life, helping them is probably the highest form of love we can offer in this life.
I’d say mostly everyone believes in ghosts, mostly everyone having had some experience that would make them believe in their existence. Just looking at Discovery + the multitude of ghost hunting shows really shows that people do believe in spirits.
Personally, I know there are ghosts, I know that there are helping and unhelpful spirits, and I know that there are elementals, divas, and other spirits that coinhabit this world around us. I know this through my spiritual work but also my professional work. For some reason I tend to be drawn to very liminal places, places where spirits navigate. At my second security job, especially after mostly everyone vacated and it was mostly me in a building by myself, I would feel them come and go, almost as if it was a spiritual highway for these energies.
Orion Foxwood writes in his book “The Flame in the Cauldron: A Book of Old-Style Witchery”
“…. in the middle of part of a bridge that covers water (a river, creek, etc.) though it must be nature-made and not man-made. Rivers and streams follow spirit roads along the earth. Under all natural waterways is a spirit road.” – pg. 88
This to me is accurate living in an area where the water bubbles up from the ground from natural underground rivers, streams, and bodies of water just under the earth, I have found where these waters come up is an influx of spirit activity or thin places.
If these beings and ghosts can become attached to us, its important to have people who are trained to help them move on to where they belong.
This course was life changing and honestly made me quite sad that I learned this amazing work because my current circumstances really hinder my ability to step into this work fully. I am not a full time shamanic practitioner, I do this work as often as I can when people come to me.
We did learn a powerful technique which is called “The Crystal Waiting Room.” The idea is that lost spirits can go to this crystal and then a practitioner can then take this crystal to a shamanic journey and then help release the beings so they can go where they belong. Very powerful.
I had to share this experience with my readers and I hope that if you’re being called to this work or if it sounds like something you may find interesting, you’ll look into taking this course. It’s an investment but worth every penny.
For those of you who are interested in a session please reach out to me via my contact me page.