What is Shamanic Depossession?

The kinder, gentler way to removing unwanted Spirits - Shamanic Depossession

by Sarah Petruno, Shamana

Possession is what occurs when a human Spirit or non-human Spirit entity completely embodies, or attaches themselves to, someone who is living.

This may or may not be with the intent to cause harm, but it almost always has an adverse affect on the living person in some way - illness and behavioral changes are two common ways in which Spirit possession can impact the living.

But the term possession itself has long since fallen out of favor, it’s not talked about too much. This is not because spiritual possession no longer occurs, but rather, because it’s often called something else.

Spiritual Attachment.

After the advent of movies like The Exorcist and the horrific portrayal of possessions and subsequent horrifying exorcisms in the media, the community of individuals that work to remove possessions decided to move in a different direction.

Without question, when a Spirit, human or non-human, attaches themselves to or embodies a living being, the results can be dire, but this is most often not the case.

When a Spirit does not cross over, they become what is called Earthbound. They do not go into the light and they stay on Earth, for whatever reason. In some cases, Spirits who are earthbound can choose to attach themselves to or completely embody someone who is living. There are many reasons for doing this, which are explained here.

Likewise, there are non-human Spirit entities like demons, who may also attach to or embody a living person.

Spirits, human or non-human, who attach themselves to or embody someone who is living are called Spiritual Attachments - and how they do it (attach vs. embody) is simply the degree of attachment. They can also be called “dark side possessing Spirits.”

Eventually, the family, friends, or even the individual with the Spirit attached may notice that something is amiss with their health and behavior, or even the spiritual activity in their home and they reach out for help.

The kinder, gentler way to removing unwanted Spirits - Shamanic Depossession

There are two main groups of individuals who work to remove and free someone of a possessing spirit, or a spiritual attachment:

    Members of Clergy


Members of the clergy will typically call this practice an exorcism, which involves little to no actual communication with the Spirit itself and more so, a broad casting out of evil Spirits.

In some circles, an exorcism is considered to be non-compassionate. It can help the living person, but provides no help to the attached Spirit.

You might be asking yourself, why do they need help?

Excluding non-human entities, most attachments and possessing Spirits are human. They were once living, physical humans just like you or I who somehow got lost along the way and chose not to cross over upon their death.

They are not all evil, they are not all possessing people intentionally, and in many cases, they might not know any other way to exist other than to connect to someone who is living. After all, they were once living and may not know how to be not-living.

By and large, human Spirits that possess and attach themselves to the living are in need of help and their souls need help to move on.

Exorcism does not always do this.

This is where shamans come in.

Shamans are communicators with and liaisons to the Spiritual world and they especially excel in healing. This includes healing the living, and healing the non-living.

Shamanic depossession is also called spiritual attachment release and compassionate depossession. It’s the alternative to exorcism.

Depossession is the act of removing a possessing spirit, a spiritual attachment, (often more than one) from a living person. In this process, the human possessing spirits are in most cases also helped and provided a path to their own soul healing - crossing over into the Light.

While not all possessing spirits can be crossed over and healed, as is the case with demons and other non-human entities, in shamanic depossession, each spirit is considered on a case by case basis. If healing can occur, the shaman facilitates this process.

Shamanic depossession is a kinder, gentler approach to spiritual possession removal that addresses healing needed on both sides of the coin, the living person(s) suffering, and the deceased person(s) suffering.


Want to know more about removing spiritual attachments? In the Kick the Sidekick Video Seminar, we cover everything there is to know about attachments, including a step-by-step method for removing them. Learn more here.

LAST UPDATED: April 24, 2015

Disclaimer: By law, we are required to state that we are not a medical doctors, the information presented here is for education purposes only, and our advice is not meant to be replaced for medical diagnosis and/or treatment by your doctor. This website is run by a shaman and an herbalist. The statements made on this blog and website represent our view of the world given our unique set of life experiences. These are truths as we see and understand the world at the time the words were written. Statements here have not been evaluated by the FDA and are meant for educational purposes only. We cannot guarantee successful outcomes. Your health is your responsibility. Please view our full terms & conditions and site disclaimers, located in the webpage footer.

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