Angie’s gone
Or is she?
A mischievous smile
Sparkling eyes
Lighting up dark corners
Lighting up new paths
An inspiration to all
Who knew her
Or thought they did
A mysterious loving imp
Of kindness and generosity
Who perhaps can still be found
Inside our hearts

Angeles Arrien, our friend, colleague, and supporter of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies over many years, unexpectedly passed away April 24, 2014, after a period of illness. A cultural anthropologist and pioneer in the field of transpersonal psychology, she was president of the Angeles Arrien Foundation for Cross-Cultural Education and Research. She was a widely known teacher and author, and was beloved by thousands of students.

Angeles ArrienOn a more personal level, Sandra Harner and I were fortunate to know Angie, as we called her, for decades. She was remarkably positive, kind, and possessed of a joyful and playful spirit. When she and I conversed, hardly a minute passed by without us breaking into laughter. Often the laughter revolved about my half-serious attempts to tease out unspoken secrets from her heritage of Basque mysticism. That heritage was very strong for her, and she was quietly and privately active in the life of her people.

At the same time, she was publicly active, indeed famous, for her cross-cultural spiritual teachings and for the enthusiasm she brought to others. That enthusiasm, coupled with gentle, compassionate understanding of the human condition was one of the markers of her life. While her passing is a sad loss, it is also an opportunity to stop, remember, and appreciate her time among us and to feel our gratitude for the gentle gifts of spirit she gave our lives.

–Michael Harner

In Angie’s honor, we have assembled a few selected video clips from a dialogue between Angie and Michael recorded at the FSS Gathering of the Council in January 2008 in Mill Valley, California. This is part of a longer video of dialogue and discussion. (The audio CD version is available at View the video.

From Angie’s website: “At Angeles’ wish there will not be a public memorial. Angie herself requested that for those who wished to truly honor her over this next year, that once a month on the anniversary of her passing (the 24th of each month), that individuals would light a candle and say a prayer to honor her memory.” For more about her accomplishments and the lives she touched, visit her website:

–Susan Mokelke