The Healing Power of Soul Retrieval

by Berenice Andrews

“…At the beginning of life there is no such thing as a baby. There is instead a mother/baby—an emotional, psychological and spiritual unit….”

Twenty years ago, this thought appeared in The Primal Wound, Nancy Verrier’s research into the immense psychological, sociological and academic difficulties of many adopted people, including her own daughter. The book describes how the separation of an infant from its biological mother—through adoption—would sever their symbiotic connection—the unity of consciousness binding them—and often result in that child’s lifelong emotional impairment. Since then, studies involving hundreds of adult adoptees have strongly implied that before birth they had experienced soul loss. And what is that?

Soul Loss

Throughout life, a human energy being, a soul, is vulnerable to soul loss. It can happen before and/or after birth and is caused by trauma that damages the centers of consciousness, thence, the soul structures. In turn, parts of the soul field are fragmented and disappear. This is experienced as a sense of “something missing.” Soul loss happening to adoptees before birth can be described this way:

Inside the human uterus the energy system of a gestating fetus works relentlessly to generate its “bodies” of consciousness. If the mother’s energies are nurturing, all will be well with that incarnating soul. But, if there are present any physical, emotional and/or mental energies that “threaten” the mother/baby unit— their unity of consciousness—the survival-driven root chakra of that fetus will be traumatized. And, in the case of impending separation by adoption, that trauma is virtually certain to damage the fetal centers of consciousness and trigger soul loss.

Soul Retrieval

The condition of soul loss can benefit from the shamanic healing modality of soul retrieval. It’s primarily a restorative work that involves not only bringing back the missing soul fragments but also assisting with their integration into the soul field.

This is the story about one such soul retrieval.

Soul Fragments in a Silver Box

I met Deborah (a pseudonym) when she was in her late twenties. A “scan” of her field yielded some disturbing clues about malfunctioning root, sacral and solar plexus chakras and dysfunctional subtle energy “bodies,” especially the emotional “body.” The energy treatments began, with the intent to bring healing into the chakras, thence into the “bodies.” (Form follows consciousness!) Soon I realized that there were parts missing from Deborah’s field. She accepted my offer of soul retrieval.

While she lay beside me on the floor, I spirit journeyed into the Otherworld. Immediately, I found myself in a large room where tall women—wearing winged white caps and long white garments—were handing out little cloth-wrapped bundles to other women in ordinary attire. I focused on one of the white-garbed women presenting a bundle to a young woman wearing a house dress. She held the bundle tightly to her heart and disappeared. Immediately, I was in a dark place filled with swirling energies out of which floated a small, covered silver box. It stopped at me. I opened it carefully and secured the contents. The journey ended. I returned and breathed them into Deborah’s heart and crown centers.

While I described my findings, I struggled to understand the message. Then, suddenly, I knew.

I asked Deborah if she had been adopted. The answer was “yes.” She had been a “chosen child,” taken home from a Roman Catholic hospital the day after her birth from a mother who had never held her. That separation, combined with intense pre-birth emotions, triggered the soul loss—the fragments in the silver box.

The Restorative Work

Then came the patient work of restoration. I suggested that she get help from a psychotherapist, while I worked at the deeper level of her centers of consciousness, where the healing had to start. It was a long process, especially the part dealing with her sacral chakra and emotional “body.”

Working with her therapist, Deborah slowly allowed her deep feelings of fear, grief and rage to surface. Together, they explored her lifelong distrust of her adoptive mother, the frequently conflictual relationship with her and/or anyone else who sought to get “too close” and her wildly dysfunctional relationships with men. Out came the stifling anxiety around being rejected and abandoned…again.

Meanwhile, the healing energies that I was delivering were impacting on her malfunctioning chakras. While their vibratory frequency was being raised, what emerged was her sense of non-being—the “something missing.” Quite clearly, the greatest damage to those centers had happened to their “i-am” consciousness energies; the primal beginnings of Deborah’s self. They had been carried by her chakras, but as part of the unity of consciousness—the symbiotic connection—   with her birth mother, during and for several months after her birthing. The result: Deborah’s egoic structures, the essential components of her own sense of being, had been badly crippled.

Deborah learned to spirit journey. In the Otherworld, she re-entered her uterine environment, where she was again impacted by her mother’s fear and confusion. And she acquired a new, compassionate discernment. In her journeys, she examined her own centers of consciousness, especially their “i-am” energies and the related masculine and feminine forces. And she developed yet more discernment. She also carefully investigated her root chakra’s confused perceptual filtering system, which was instrumental in producing her fear-based belief structures. When she realized how they had shaped her emotions, thoughts and actions, she set about to change them.

The restorative work continued. While she slowly healed her chakras and, thereby, healed her “bodies,” something wonderful happened. Deborah discovered the “mother” awaiting her—her own Divine Feminine energies.

Since then, Deborah has continued to develop into who she is—a deeply insightful and lovingly empowered woman, whose professional career involves “mothering” newborn infants.


In this world where people can be traumatized in a multitude of ways, before and after birth, many can benefit from the restorative and healing work of soul retrieval. It’s beneficial because human energy beings, i.e., souls, must eventually fulfill their essential purpose of spiritual evolution. Then, while coming into the “knowing” of who they are and why they are here, they make their inner journey “home” to the Self.


Berenice Andrews is a shamanic teacher and healer. To learn more about her teaching, consult her website,, and her book, Rebirthing Into Androgyny: Your Quest for Wholeness, And Afterward. For more information about soul retrieval and soul, see her articles; “Shamanic Work in the Plains of Existence” and “A Shamanic Perspective on Soul” in Transformation Magazine, October and November, 2013.

[Author’s Note] For additional information about the primal wound in adoptees, consult Nancy Verrier’s website ( and read the books by Betty Jean Lifton and others. To learn more about the symbiosis connecting a biological mother and her child, start with The Psychological Birth of the Human Infant: Symbiosis and Individuation, by Margaret S. Mahler, Fred Pine and Anni Bergman.



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