Italian Shamanism: The Healing & The Treatments

The following article has been written by my friend Michela Chiarelli regarding the Traditional Healing Techniques used in the Italian Shamanism (about which still very little is known let alone written!). But before I let you go on reading I felt a need to ask a few things about the role of the Priestess.

What is a Priesthood?

MC: It is a service to others and hardly anyone in the world today puts themselves in the position of being able to help others and not themselves.

One is born with these characteristics, I entrust few people with a grant and I would entrust even less people with a priesthood. Simply because, and I’m sure you agree with me, modern people are very focuse on themselves.

A Priestess is one who must possess the keys between the two worlds, be able to open the doors, recognize signs and omens, and not just make of some roles a source of pride.

Today there are no Priestesses who serve the people and the Divine…

Today there are no Priestesses who keep the fire burning.

Today is a job…

What did the world with the loss of Priestesses?

MC: The good magic, the brotherhood, the collective defense, the balance between light and shadow…

In everyday practices, in everyday life…

There is no more Balance.

Ancient Dynamic Techniques Of Healing 

The significant difference is that in the Italian Ethno-Cultural tradition, the healing and the treatments are distinguishable from one another based on a complete and unique technique in the world, which studies the individual in all his aspects by participating with its ancient arts in every healing process.
The Rituals are the choreography that makes the Dance of Life so extraordinary… they are defined Dynamic Arts, in a mystic and material vision, because the recipient must actively participate.

The Ritual of Shamanic Healing

The ritual is the choreography that makes the Dance of Life extraordinary… in the Italian Shamanism the treatments are mostly manual techniques, or of sound and singing. The healings are true shamanic rituals to which one gets initiated since a very young age… beware of imitations.

They are usually interconnected: after a healing ritual, which is the revelatory part, comes the shamanic treatment which is the practical part. These two steps sometimes are interdependent and sometimes not.

Many times, during my experience, I’ve been asked how an Italian Shamanic Healing ritual takes place in practice.
The practice itself is personal and private! I can proudly say that every student of mine develops his/her gifts and abilities, and becomes a unique therapist.

Surely in an article I won’t be able to spread how an Italian Shaman’s works in reality, nor how the rituals are performed.

The Place is Nature

Above everything, it’s important to choose the place where to perform the ritual. Each Shaman Priestess chooses the appropriate territory. A place where the elements can be perceived in their fullness. The powers of nature make our Being vibrate strongly, through the contact with the Mother of all things our body vibrates and our mind is refined. Perceptions touch every creature and everything can be transformed. The cold wind of winter, or the warm wind of summer, the lashing of the rain or the scent of the grass, the sound of the waves and under your feet, the heat of the sand: all this gives power to the body, heart and spirit.
The place is chosen according to the possibilities of the recipient, the purpose of the ritual and to the most intimate intent of the Shaman Priestess. It is our very nature that merges with the solution before beginning to operate, only in this way it is allowed to Divine, See, Feel and Reconnect to wellness.
Communion must be created with the place where you are. The Shaman Priestess undresses of her Human being, remembers her creative power, experiences the Sacred of the Moon in herself, then sits on a stone, on the bare earth, on the sand, in her home, in front of the fireplace, a burning candle or a fire, and starts singing.
Gently first and intensely then she begins to clap her hands on her drum, or to slide the strings on her harp, making the void inside herself, leaving the rest of the world outside, and opening her soul to infinity, she begins to ask indications and fuses with the messages from the cosmo opening herself to Divination.
Inside herself she Travels, Sees, Discovers, Thanks, Cries, Loves, Heals, Solves, but it is FUNDAMENTAL TO MOVE IN NATURE FOR THE BODY IS OUR GREATEST TOOL.
She melts herself with the Creative Mother of everything. The Shaman Priestess becomes part of the Whole. To draw lessons from the wonderful world that hosts us, she collects wood, herbs, stones and feathers, then through the Divination of what her mind sees, she captures every aspect and every meaning hidden in her Loot. She asks for support to the flight of the birds, to the falling leaves, to the meeting with some animals, for a Moon Woman everything collaborates in the great Mystery of the Shamanic Rite.
The sacred place par excellence is our heart, our mind, our Room of projections, there where we can create change.

The Call of the Spirits

If you listen you will hear the voice of the wind whispering the truth you are looking for.
After practicing Divination, when the Ancestral Correspondences are favourable, we proceed to the next step of the ritual which is the calling of the Spirits of the Four Directions. The traditional names change, but basically they are the ones we all know: North, South, East, West. The calling technique, we’ll see later, varies itself from Memory to Tradition. The call itself is a declaration of intent, in which the reason for our action is manifested and a deep connection is invoked with with the world around us and with the Spirits that represent it, both as elemental forces and as elements themselves. Dancing, walking, swimming or simply lying on the ground our spirit flies and calls the closest Spirits!


Purification opens the mind to the song of the Infinite.
After the call of the Spirits it comes the time to Purify oneself, lighting the incense or herbs and letting them burn in the brazier.
Fumigation brings our being to a very high state of peace and purity, and for this reason it is a fundamental phase of the Rite to be practiced. With the Censer or the Brazier in hand, continuing from North to West, we pay homage to the elements, purify the place and create a circle of protection. This serves to regenerate, the energies of the places, to hunt away the evil spirits and to protect those who participate in the Rite, both the Priestess and any other participants.

The Dance of Animals

In movement in similarity we acquire divine characteristics.
In the complete fusion with the place that hosts us, after the Divination and a purification of our Being, we procede with the works that can open our awareness to the perception of the Divine that surrounds us. So we procede with the dance of the animals which is a set of rhythmic movements that induce a fusion of the Shaman Priestess with an animal. The aim is to obtain a deep connection with the place and with some Spiritual characteristics of the animal itself that can stimulate the Shaman’s perception by making her faculties more acute.
It is not a dangerous possession, neither a total possession, since the Shaman Priestess spontaneously opens the doors of her mind to the animal of power and maintains her clear conscience towards what she does.
It is very important and at the same time very difficult, since it is only a matter of initially imitating the animals, but then the door of oneself must be opened to the spiritual essence of the animal itself: the knowing essence of the secrets of the animals, full of instinct and divine vibration.
The interaction between Woman-Shaman and Spirit-Animal through the imitation of the animal’s physical movements is truly an important and magical experience. Feeling the spirit of the animal inside is a strong experience, a powerful energy exchange that only a Shaman Priestess is able to face; it is a very profound way of interacting with the animals, having relationship with them. This technique allows us to vibrate in synch with latent, or denied, instincts. It is a technique that strengthens the spirit and the mind, allows us to merge with the free and wild being, which can bring us back to the dawn of out lineage, where everything has started and where nothing can be separated in the sufferance and detachment.

The Shamanic Journey

To truly seek yourself, stand up and walk…
The shamanic journey is the first test that an apprentice must undergo on his/her journey in the body of Mother Earth. There are numerous works that offer guided visualisations for this purpose, each shaman has his/her own, handed down from master to student, received in a dream etc.
The shamanic journey is not, in fact, a simple technique, the body is conducted beyond its limits and resistances, but without the use of any type of psychotropic substance.
The true shamanic journey, experienced by me, does not happen in the mind. It is not a visualisation. It is done in Nature, in close contact with the elemental forces in the Belly of Mother Earth.
The body of the shaman is put to the hard test of initiation: loneliness, abandonment, fasting, cold, hunting, fighting, night defence, freezing baths. To obtain a prophecy we undergo heat sessions such as the ancient Pythonesses  of the Temple of Apollo, in Greece, on the Delphic tripod. All this stimulates vision, clairvoyance and foresight, gifts of the mind and purification of the body, and does not necessarily and absolutely imply taking drugs. Indeed, precisely the absence of drugs, allows the Shaman Priestess herself to find and maintain control of the vision, to consciously interact in the world of Spirits and create a reflection in the world of Forms.

The Worlds

Everything that surrounds us is part of our Being, nature responds to what we are internally…

Inferior World THE CAVE: this is where the allied animal spirits meet. The Shamanic practice is purely personal. Shamans never talk about their allies in the spirit world, and not only because it weakens their power. The best thing would be to ask the animals or Spirit guides themselves if they want their presence to be revealed or not.
When the Shaman Priestess begins her descent into the lower world, she must physically head into caves, tunnels, ice caves, deserts, mountains, forests. Who practices shamanism, must know not only what lives in the world of ideas, in the mental world, but also and above all, what is found in the inner world. Below us, in our womb, lies the dark world linked to strong emotions and feelings. When you descend into the dark, passing through several tunnels, you also travel the path towards the unconscious, toward the unexplored parts of the personality. It is an important and necessary step, to learn to recognise sensations, to know how to discern non-ordinary reality from mental dream.

Middle World WATER: after the two physical worlds the body and mind of the Shaman Priestess open to the vision of the middle world. The middle world is a world very similar to ours, in which the Spirits of all those who live there meet. It is a fantastic way to communicate with plants, elemental beings, objects, people who live far away and above all to communicate with Nature.
This world allows you to meet the Mood, to explore her, to talk to her and to ask her to teach us to better understand our own cycles, our tides etc. It belongs to our terrestrial time, contrary to the other two. To find access, you have to go down to the lower world and ask the spirit-animals to accompany on the journey upwards. It is a complex world because inhabited by a crowd of lost spirits and souls, who perhaps do not even know why they died. It is never recommended to get in touch with them. Only an experienced psychopump, who guides the souls of the dead in the underworld, can interact and help. The realm of the dead is a dangerous realm for us, and if you are not a trained psychopump or you are inexperienced, you would drag with you into our world some wandering souls, souls who would generate great material difficulties and serious health problems. On the other hand it is very easy and interesting to find fairy beings fairies, elves and other elemental beings.

The Upper World THE HIGH MOUNTAIN: so beautiful that it takes your breath away… even just for a walk. The upper world is the world from which our souls originate, this contact can lead to getting lost forever because the world of high vibrations is full welcoming entities and often you may not want to return to human frequencies. Then when the Shaman Priestess will go to the Upper World, she will be so prepared for the management of her emotions, she will already have experiences on which to base herself. In the midst of the stars, among the clouds and the Gods, joy can be given to the heart. In this case, you go up to the high mountains and sleep outdoor near the stars.

Italian Medicine Wheel

Surround me with Light and Love and bring me where truth reigns… teach me to know the body.
Every way has been run across the children of Mother Earth, around and inside her maternal baby bump, here we have known the first circle, Container and Mystery Egg of Life, Regeneration and Rebirth. For Italian culture, the Medicine Wheel is the sacred place where we operate, it is not physically traced in predefined places, but travels with us, in our mind, in our heart and we take it everywhere to bless Mother Earth, our actions and our Sacred Rituals with immense Joy.
The Sacred circle where the following live: the North, the South, the East, the West.

THE NORTH EARTH: it brings the cold winds of winter, which purify the earth with their intensity and oblige everyone to spend part of their time doing nothing but warming up, lying down and renewing themselves.

THE EAST AIR: sends the warm winds of spring that dry out, torment and force you to open up to the illumination and wisdom, which are the gifts proper to this season.

THE SOUTH FIRE: brings the hot summer winds that open us up completely to growth, maturation, warmth and future fruits.

THE WEST WATER: it brings along the cold autumn breeze which invite us to gently return inside of ourselves, at the same time find additional resources, our inner strengths and weaknesses.

Michela Chiarelli 





Healing Art: Interview with Gabriele Nunziante

Life is really funny! Gabriele and I grew up in the same town in Italy (Giaveno) and although we knew each other (cuz I mean you can’t not know someone when you live in a small town) our paths never crossed until last summer, by chance. We were, I believe, on somewhat parallel paths never to cross if it wasn’t for events in our lives that brought us on the same wave length: on this wave length we could meet, talk, share our discoveries. 

It happened that I was looking for a Rose Quarz and one evening I got invited for dinner by my brother, lazily I accepted and decided to go by foot. Right before reaching my brother’s apartment I spot a stand with crystals. There, not only I find the Rose Quarz but I discover Gabriele! I think we both were surprised to speak so naturally as if we were old friends but had never really spoken to each other until that moment. He showed me the Fire Jewellery he makes with clay. And this was the beginning of a friendship…
After months, we met again and again because I was looking for more crystals and more Fire Jewellery so every time I would go visit him at home we would end up talking about the current situation of our Planet, symbolism, Sacred Geometry and also how being on different paths we got to pretty much the same destination: inner peace and unconditional love.

Thank you Gabri for accepting this interview. Lets begin with the Destination, I am reading your book “Il Tempo Dell’Amore” (The Time Of Love – only available in Italian on Amazon) about your journey walking the Santiago Way. It reminded me of when I walked it alone, like you. One thing I realised is that Santiago – The Destination can be reached by multiple ways and by multiple means (by foot, bike, car, horse etc)… so does inner peace and unconditional love. What are your thoughts on this?

From a certain point point of view yes, but the Camino de Santiago is a good “way” to take back your time. It’s easier than any other way because there everything is organised and all you need to focus on is the walking. In my opinion the only way, the only mean you can use to do the Camino de Santiago is by foot: there is no more time to play the tourist. Look at the Society today, there is no more time. So the Camino de Santiago is a fast way to wake and shake you up, it gives you an emotional shockwave which is needed in order to meet yourself again. This is the fast way for You to meet You. How does this happen? By walking, step by step. Walking becomes a sort of mantra, tic tic tic…. you go back to hearing the sound of your steps, something that doesn’t happen anymore in your daily life because we are constantly suspended between past and future and we forget to stay in the present. Walking brings you back to the present. Moreover, the pain and everything you feel it’s part of the present too. It’s in the present that magic happens. It’s in the present that change is possible. Everyone changes during the Camino. Everyone.

Why is it so important to meet yourself?

Because it’s the only possible encounter. There is no God to seek, no philosophy more important than to meet yourself. Because the only change possible is only when you meet yourself. It’s inside yourself that you find all the information you need to live well now, today. “Know thyself and you’ll know God”, it’s been been said since ancient times but then it became obfuscated. As a matter of fact, in the Gnostic Bible we find Jesus who preaches the personal/inner quest. He doesn’t tell you “you must follow me, do what I tell you to do”, no He incites you to go find yourself because you are made in the image of God.

What happened after walking Santiago? Where did it take you next? What was the other journey that affected you?

My Camino physically finished in Finisterre, but it began for real once I got back home. What happened to me was that I had eaten too much space!! Of course when you come back it feels going back living in a box, how can you go back in a box when you ate so much space? There is no freedom in this box and you end up living a life programmed by someone else. For what? Everyone lives this life… for what though? To buy things and pay for things: the human being became the consumer. It’s ok, we do it because it’s scarier to find out something new than to stay where you are even if you are unhappy. I understand but we need to have more courage and this is the right time… if you still haven’t walked the first step you are already too late!
I never went back to the life I was living before. There was no “another trip”, I began to travel. I burned all bridges with the past, which means I closed my bank accounts, I gave my car to my mom, I shut down everything that was keeping me dependent on the system. I put myself in the condition to be just me totally naked alone with myself, I only had a couple thousands euros and the hang (which needs a lot of space to be played). It took me a couple months to get out of the system and after that I decided to only follow my instincts 24/7 without any sort of compromise. If I end up living in the street looking for food in the trash bins that’s my responsibility – and it did happen btw. After a couple months I left by foot for the Canary Islands to a Rainbow Healing Gathering with my hang in front and my backpack on my shoulders, by chance I met a girl in Liguria who was also going there by car and we went together. I just followed the Direction. I lived in a cave in front of the beach for three months but I wasn’t alone. Do you know what it means to sleep under the stars with the sound of the waves for three months? It means you completely reprogram your mind! When we needed money we would go to the city to play music for the people and used that money to buy some fruits and rice and go back to the beach to just LIVE THE TIME.
When I got back to Italy I heard of an echo village in Tuscany and went there for a bit.
I live my time, I live the time and it’s not easy of course. You must need massive adaptation skills, it happened to me to not even have one euro for a coffee after a lot of time spent in service for people for free…. but it’s the first time that I feel being the master of my time. I started to follow my heart. I discovered to have a heart that thinks and who has a vision of its own, hence I began to mould my reality according to that vision. Now it’s been 5 years that I’m “on the way”, I lived in Israel, I traveled across Europe and have friends everywhere. Today I found an equilibrium and I found a way of living through my art.

How did you come up with Fire Jewellery? And can you explain its power?

Everything began after I lived 5 months in Israel where I met a woman and where I had flashbacks of past lives so the people I met were actually people I had already known. This is the first place where I found myself recognised by the people, which never happened not in my family nor in Italy. There the people looked me in the eyes and hugged me like a brother or like a son. It was very healing to be accepted. I turned 33 in Israel and met Yaela. One night, when we were in Italy in my home… I had some clay and she had a flower of life stencil. She began making some balls and stamping the flower of life on top, in a couple hours we had 400 of these. We looked around and had crystals with us so we just began breaking down the crystals and positioning them on the the flower of life: we immediately felt an energy shift in the room but still didn’t know what we were doing, also the clay was still raw and I had never cooked it. We realised these could be turned into necklaces but again: how to cook clay? The following day we were walking in Turin, I see a stand with ceramic utensils and a poster on which it was written the procedure of how to build an oven in the ground to cook clay – I MEAN!!! This is an ancient techniques and after a couple trials we made it! On top of this, days later I walk into a bookstore and find a book on crystal grids by Judy Hall in which she explains the powerful relationship between geometry and crystals: together they form a “field”, they amply your intention. If the geometry with which you created is perfect, you obtain the result.
In this case, the power of the fire jewellery lays in the fact that it was a pure canalisation between two energies: the masculine and the feminine, fire and water, which is what me and Yaela represent together like Alchemic elements. So you have these two humans who worked in synergy with the four elements: the clay, the water which moulds the clay, the air that dries them and the fire that locks them. The four combined create the fifth element: space. I’m still discovering what they do because the potential is immense. You can use them as a necklace or you can use them for crystal healing.

Fire Jewellery is linked to Sacred Geometry. Can you explain what is it and what is your work with the grids? What is the power of the grids mixed with colours and crystals? 

It’s important to understand the science behind the Sacred Geometry. Some people don’t need to go through the logic but for the rest there is physics and science that explain this work. Basically, when I take two elements that have the same informations these two resonate, which means that the informations exchange in a harmonious way: this creates an energy field. Everything is geometry. The universe was created according to a geometry. The laws of physics are hidden behind the symbols. Crystals are pure geometry, if we look inside them we see a net that we recognise as the platonic solids.
So now I created this field but you must understand that everything starts from our brain. Everything starts from us, WE are the biggest power. It’s US who make this reality. So I created an energy field which I needed to amplify my intention. Currently I am using these crystal grids for balancing because by working with the flower of life I will automatically create harmonious geometries which will bring balance. I can see if you have and where unbalance within you physically. I can also build a grid to get what I still don’t have, for example I want to develop certain qualities but I don’t know how so I build a perfect grid with those qualities and it becomes very efficient. When you see it physically the two parts of the brain start to communicate, logic and intuition.

Find Gabriele here

Gabriel and its hang

There could be a never ending talk between him and I. There are many things he can do for you to help with healing and balancing. I personally have two Fire Jewellery necklaces, the latter one it was custom made for me because I also work with crystals and I know intuitively what I need. Since we met there has been an exchange of information and it’s beautiful to watch him grow and develop his art beyond limits (or beyond that which we perceive as limits). If you are interested please go find him on his facebook (link above the last image) where you can see more photos of what he does. Currently he painted 3 unique (and I mean UNIQUE) paintings about which you can ask directly to him 🙂 I hope somehow you get our message beyond the words here written…