Former Certified Shamanic Counselor Requirements

NOTE: As of 2008, the Foundation for Shamanic Studies ceased offering certification in Harner Shamanic Counseling. This cessation does not affect those who already are Certified Shamanic Counselors (CSC). The Five-Day Harner Shamanic Counseling Training is currently being offered, with a Certificate of Completion available by request upon satisfactory completion of the training.

Harner Shamanic Counseling (HSC) is a method of spiritual learning combining core shamanism with important systemic and technical innovations made by Michael Harner for personal life-enlightenment. HSC is based upon the ancient principles of shamanism, not of psychology or other modern Western systems. It is essential, therefore, that the Counseling Trainee know shamanism well and practice it regularly in daily life.

Former sequential steps and requirements for certification

(Revised October 24, 2006)

  1. Successful completion of the FSS Basic Workshop, The Way of the Shaman.
  2. Acceptance into, and successful completion of, the FSS Five-Day Harner (Method) Shamanic Counseling Training.
  3. Submission of (a) audio cassette recordings of the applicant's own sessions as a client during the Five-Day Course; and (b) a 4,000-5,000-word typewritten essay answering the following question: "What should the standards be for the shamanic counselor, and how do I meet these standards?"
  4. After acceptance into the Certification Program (which is not a guarantee of certification), the Counseling Trainee must participate in at least 20 meetings of a core shamanic drumming circle, whether already ongoing or set up by the Counseling Trainee. A brief typewritten report on this participation must be delivered as indicated in step 6 (below). It should include the dates and town identification of each of the meetings.
  5. Successful completion of at least 125 additional hours (not including the Basic workshop or the Shamanic Counseling Training Course) of core shamanic training in FSS courses. The 125 hours should consist of advanced weekend and five-day workshops in core shamanism and/or the Two-Week Intensive and the Three-Year Program. These hours may be accumulated both before and after being admitted to the Certification Program. A typewritten list of these workshops and courses, indicating the years and places taken, and the faculty members, must be delivered as indicated in step 6. Please note that repetition of a workshop or course does not count in the crediting of hours, although it is useful training.
  6. Submission of a total of 25 hours of audio cassette recordings of shamanic counseling work by the trainee with one or more clients.
  7. The minimum material expected on a tape is: the pre-journey introduction and discussion; the journey; the summation; and the discussion afterward. At least 15 hours of the tapes must represent work after admission into the Certification Program. All tapes must be delivered at least 60 days before the Teaching Examination. At the same time the trainee must also provide written reports, as indicated in steps 4 and 5.
  8. The Review Committee will audit and evaluate this taped work. The evaluations are for Committee deliberations only. However, the Committee will suggest remedial work when appropriate.
  9. Successful completion of a Five-Day Teaching Examination in Shamanic Counseling.
  10. An Oral Examination on Shamanism and Shamanic Counseling (may be waived at the discretion of the Foundation).
  11. Final evaluation for Certification.
  12. Certification.
*Certified Shamanic Counselor® and CSC® are registered trademarks of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies.