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Soul Retrieval Tracker
- plaster cast of my partner’s face;
- black sand, Hawaii;
- river stones and pebbles from the Montana riversides;
- lightning stones (also called zebra rocks,) Lake Champlain, Vermont;
- hanging black tree moss, Montana;
- wasp nest paper, from my old backyard in the Montana countryside;
- three thick pieces of tree bark, Montana
This Mask Artistry piece, “Soul Retrieval Tracker,” needs a bit of explanation. At first glance, it may seem a dark, scary countenance, but, for me, it is brightly alive, purposeful and powerful. As a practicing Shaman, one responsibility I have when journeying for a client is the seeking/tracking/finding/returning of a misplaced soul part that may have “left” during times of trauma, should that process be appropriate. I have three totem animals, one of which is my tracker animal that shows up in a shamanic journey if retrieval is deemed necessary after a spiritual, energetic diagnostic. This totem animal arrives, if needed, in my journey image every time. One time, though, to my great surprise, he did not arrive. I knew a soul part retrieval was in order, but… still no tracker. I waited. And waited some more. I then saw in my imaging, from far off in the distance, a figure with this mask face, come towards me. It was full bodied, but its face was unmistakably the mask I had just finished creating the day before.
In this particular shamanic journey, the figure explained that his essence, his purpose or calling, was to serve as a one-time tracker. He successfully tracked the missing soul part for me in what shamans call Non-ordinary Reality, retrieved it, returned it to me, and I placed it in the client’s auric field. He never returned after that, but I fully imagine that being in relationship with this mask essence could prompt the exploration of any missing emotional “pieces” in ordinary reality, and the owning of them.
I remember feeling this full figure tracker was beautiful, and I am grateful to have had that momentary relationship and experience with him in the shamanic journey field.
The materials are somewhat harsh – the dark face, the black hair, the jagged thick bark, the solidity of the stones and pebbles – yet every time I look at this mask, I see power, knowledge, fierce determination, and the willingness to return lost parts, whether they be spiritual, emotional, or psychic. The final element I included is the face itself. This one I cast on Doug's face. I've only done that twice in all the masks I've created. It seems to give a strongly masculine overtone to the entire creation.