No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it

North Carolina

Star Ladd

My early shamanic journey experiences began as a young child in the garden with my grandmother. She taught me well to listen to the Earth and Her rhythms flowing through the year's seasons. My very first memories in this life come from the garden. From a musical family, I was exposed to a wide variety of music and musical cultures. I learned to read music at the age of six, first vocally and then playing flute, piano, oboe, piccolo, and cello.

    A vivid dreamer, I learned early on to dance in the sleeping and waking dreamtime. In adolescence I was walking one night in the rain, splashing in the puddles. Eventually the rain cleared, and I was walking in the night. Passing street lights I recognized my shadow and began dancing with it, ecstatically, dancing towards and then away from the light, playing with the shadow cast of myself. I felt like I had come home, home to a place within both the sleeping and awake worlds. I had found a home within the movement expression of my own soul and a deep connectedness with all life I had somehow known existed but had yet to soulfully experience.   

In early adulthood I became involved with communities in central Florida, exploring altered states of consciousness, movement and musical expression, including time with the Rainbow family, sharing song and lots of drumming.

    My working career has included organic farming, jewelry design, massage therapy (for the last 12 years), Medical qigong (Taoist shamanic healing, training exceeding 400 hours), teaching qigong, and vegan cooking.

    My experience with Trance Dance began in 2000 in the Mills River area of Western North Carolina. I attended a journey through the chakras Trance Dance ritual that spanned the course of seven months. Over the years I have been blessed and deeply enriched by this ritual experience. Trance Dance has given me a safe home to explore deep places within myself for healing, especially valuable as a tool to explore my shadow energies. There are so few opportunities to safely explore the wide range of feelings that are often deemed unacceptable by society, those hidden, unknown, sometimes repressed energies. With the sacred gift of the blindfold I have been able to experience what traditional therapy has only given my mind the place to expound upon. I have been given the gift to encounter and interact with my demons and angels, so to speak, in sacred space, reintegrating those estranged missing parts of my soul being. Likewise, I have experienced immense joy and the celebration in the growth of my own soul within the ritual context.

    Trance Dance and the work of Wilbert Alix have created a profound living breathing relationship with my soul's work and being in this life, such a breath of fresh air from the analytical pulse of an only eyes open life. I feel deeply blessed by this experience, and it is such a gift to hold this space for others.