Interview with a 21st Century Shaman


Trent Deerhorn is a mystical healer and a man of a multitude of artistic expressions. He paints beautiful art, writes eloquently, teaches, and performs ceremonies. He is kind and compassionate, humble and radiant. Trent’s ability to connect with others is a gift inherited from his ancestral line; Trent is a descendent from a generation of mystical healers. He has worked as a Shaman for over 30 years. As an expert in the field of all things Shamanic, Trent is deeply knowledgeable about Spirit Animals, Medicine Wheel’s, and Shamanic Journeying. Situated in Canada, anyone who meets Trent; whether in person, by phone, or through electronic means, feels the warmth and generosity of his spirit.


Ladies and gentlemen,

it is with great pleasure that I present to you

the enigmatic

Trent Deerhorn.


Would I be on the right track if I said a Shaman was a modern day ‘Wizard’?

Well, this would require me to ask what your definition of the word “Wizard” would be? Although I have studied many forms of magic and have mastered several of those, my main focus is on healing of the individual through working on the energy that moves through and around their physical bodies, and healing of the earth and of spaces on the earth, be it spaces in nature or private spaces in which people live and work.

But it is not like I would cast a spell and VOILA! You are HEALED! It is more that I listen…closely…to what the energy has to say to me. Unlike many, I can see, hear, taste, touch, smell energy systems. In a way, I am a bit like a blood hound in that there is not much I don’t notice or can’t sniff out. As long as I have encountered it before I will recognize it. And if I have not encountered something before I will reserve judgment until such time as I get to know what it is all about.


I don’t approach energy as having particular meanings…such as red in the aura shows that you are angry. That is way too simplistic an approach. I look at it as varying shades of meaning and innuendo. Once one actually spends many, MANY years working with the energy system one can find patterns within energy systems. So what shade of red are we speaking of? And where is it located? And what does it do while it is there? And does it stay localized or does it move around? That sort of thing. Energy also is never completely static. Our entire energy body is designed to move energy through it, so to think that something will always remain the same…or that it even should…is expecting an energy flow to go against its natural inclinations.


So back to your original question…I think that labels are ways of trying to define something for the understanding of a concept, but we also attach HUGE amounts of personal meanings to every label we think of. I don’t really identify with the term “Wizard”. But the term “Shaman” fits strongly for me. The connection to nature and the natural flow and the natural cycles that exist in our world, in our lives, in our universe…it all makes sense to me and resonates deeply with me. Accessing the flow (much like accessing the Force in Star Wars) is something that assists one to become better at moving with the flow. It is a matter of expanding our consciousness to access the flow that is there. And in doing so we discover that we always were a part of that flow, but now we are conscious of it.


How do people usually respond when you tell them about your line of work?


It is funny you should ask that, actually. There was a time that when someone asked me what I do, I would frame it in either vague terms like “I am in Human Resources” or in terms that they may be able to grasp like “I am a counselor”. The reason for this is that when I was growing up in an area that had very right wing conservative religious people living there, when it was discovered that I was a practicing shaman things got very ugly and quite dangerous very quickly. I ended up having to move away to make sure no one got hurt…and by that I mean THEM, not me or my family. We were very capable of taking care of ourselves…but when people are throwing gasoline on your yard and farm land and trying to burn you out and not realizing that they are putting themselves at risk more than us, it gets way too real. So I had a healthy concern about coming out of the shamanic closet.


After my first child was born I was given an “order” by spirit that I absolutely had to start calling myself what I am and not be hiding behind any illusions for the sake of staying safe or making things palatable for others. I had to simply say that I am a shaman and I do shamanic healing.


So now when people hear that they either know exactly what I am talking about (most of them nowadays do) or they have a blank expression and say stuff like, “I don’t have a clue what that means.” So I use it as an opportunity to educate them about shamanism.

What would people typically seek out from a Shamanic service?


Many people come to me because they are not feeling well. Many come to me because they feel lost, drifting in life.
Many come to me because they feel disconnected. Many come to me because they feel a profound sorrow deep within their souls. Most often people come to see me on the referral of a friend who has seen the benefits of what I have to offer.


I usually begin with an intake appointment where I find out where a person is currently at in their life, what they have in their personal history that has created difficulties, what they have done with that to date (if anything), what they would like to see change in their life or in their well-being, and whether or not they have other practitioners as members of their personal healing team. I totally believe that no one person can do EVERYTHING for a person on their healing journey. It takes a group of people, each with their own expertise, to create a lasting difference for anyone who is on a healing journey.


From there we create a “loose” plan. I say “loose” because people are organic and things change along the way. So in a way what I am doing is figuring out which end to pick up this poor tangled ball of yarn so that it can all loosen up and untangle. That may mean we begin with counseling sessions, it may mean we begin with energy balancing sessions, it may mean that we build up to things like ceremonial healing session (but in a way they are all ceremonial anyway), or it may mean that we work on soul retrieval, or it may mean that we begin with doing work accessing connections with nature, thus grounding their energy better for future healing. Or it may be that we work on their creative expression so that they can come out of the tight shell that either they have placed themselves in or that others are expecting them to stay in. It really is a matter of the sky is the limit.

Do you do spells and if so, do you use a cauldron? What are some ‘popular’ spells?


Yes I do spells, mostly for me, working on my personal development. Yes I sometimes use a cauldron, because the medicine of various plants or minerals and such that would go into the cauldron will enhance the energy of the spell.
Popular spells that I may use are for things like personal protection, greater insights, connecting more deeply with Spirit Guides, Karmic release of Past Life traumas, the enhancement of personal gifts that are already within me but that I have perhaps been ignoring or neglecting.


I should mention here that the most effective spell that is cast is one that is cast on oneself. I do not very often, and only in extreme circumstances, cast a spell on anyone else. I do not like the control and manipulation issues that go with that mentality. The extreme circumstances would be in terms of protecting myself or someone else from dark magic that is being thrown their/our way.


Magic is neutral. We think of it as light or dark, good or evil. But it is neutral. It is the purpose to which it is applied by PEOPLE that makes it dualistic in nature. The same goes for energy of any kind, because, let’s face it, any magic is simply the usage of energy that is already there.

Have you ever seen magic done with animals – such as what we see in films where a chicken or a goat is sacrificed? What kind of rituals would typically involve animals?


I refuse to ever participate in those kinds of sacrificial rituals. I know that they are there, and that people do them. But that is simply NOT my thing. That is a form of blood magic that can turn very dangerous down the road. And the fact that they choose to kill an innocent sentient being to serve their own agenda of control and manipulation is, to me, abuse and idiocy at its finest.

What is a Spirit Animal? How does one know what their Spirit Animal is?



A Spirit Animal is the essence of a member of the animal kingdom that walks with you and guides you along the way. So, for example, one of my spirit animals is the Otter. Otter is associated with nurturing and healing as well as playfulness and the love of FUN. How this serves me is quite variant. I have a wicked funny sense of humor, so when I am in session with someone we often end up laughing… a LOT. Laughter heals. It forces the old air out of the lungs so that fresh air can get in. It creates levity in dire situations. It uplifts the spirit of an individual. It is not like it is an indication that we are just horsing around. We are actually doing a form of therapy with humor and laughter.


Otter also helps me to “know within” what a person most needs for nurturing in their lives. Perhaps that person needs to have more comfort food (soup on a cold day) or deeper intimate connection (holding hands with one’s partner while watching TV at night) or whatever. When someone has the invitation to self-care with the understanding of how important that self-care is, it can change one’s life tremendously.


Spirit Animals all have different “medicines” that they carry. We are not limited to just ONE and ONLY ONE spirit animal. We can accumulate quite the zoo around us on a spirit level. And they will communicate with us on deep instinctual levels.
I never make a big deal about what Spirit Animals are in my zoo. They all have merit. And so would yours or anyone else’s. People often get hung up on what they perceive as “power” in the Spirit Animal kingdom. So they boast about things like “My animal is the BEAR” or “My animal is the EAGLE”…like that is supposed to impress everyone around them. That is a complete approach to this from a standpoint of pure ego. Worthless. Someone with a Spirit Animal that is a mouse can be much more powerful as a person than someone with an elephant. Size really does not matter.


There are some Spirit Animals who are also Spirit Guides and shape shift from animal to human form. This is actually quite common, although people are often aghast at the discovery of that. But really. We are talking about SPIRIT here. Do you really think Spirit has limitations? Get over yourself. LOL Humans are notorious for “humanizing” Spirit. They think that Spirit is limited, like we are in our human bodies. But it isn’t.


When we come to realize as well that we are actually SPIRIT in human form, then many of those limitations that humans have go out the window. We use such a small portion of our vast human brains. When we begin to utilize the full capacity, we end up with more consciousness and more connection to energy fields that we once inaccessible. It is not a matter, though, of developing new abilities. It is a matter of uncovering what has always been there, dormant within, waiting for us to rediscover them.

Is a Medicine Wheel an actual device of sorts? What is it?


Yes it is. But there are various types. There are various styles. We don’t, for example, all drive the same make and model of car. Not all of us who use a Medicine Wheel use the same pattern, design or size.


Medicine Wheels can also be hidden in our consciousness. The Flower of Life pattern is a Medicine Wheel, as is Stonehenge, as is the Yin and Yang pattern, as is the Mandala.


Medicine Wheel teachings will include things such as how to be in our world. So there will, with each stone, be a set of teachings that we put into practice. We learn things like how to determine with our spirits, give with our emotions, hold with our bodies, receive with our minds, and how to follow the Path of the Heart, which is the path of personal authenticity and integrity as well as personal authority and sovereignty. We learn how patterns in our world match patterns in the universe.


We learn about how there is both a divine masculine aspect to things as well as a divine feminine aspect to things. We learn about our connections to plants, trees, animals, rocks, mountains, rivers, prairies, oceans, the sky and everything that this entails. It really is a life-long study.

Can you explain Shamanic Journeying? Does it involve LSD or Peyote? How long can that ‘trip/journey’ take?


Shamanic Journeying is the practice of allowing oneself to step across the veil of consciousness into the other realms of consciousness. Although many use medicines such as LSD and Peyote to accomplish this, I do not. I use the slow, rhythmic beat of the drum or, if a drum is not accessible in the moment, of my heart. I allow that to gently lull me into a soft trance state where I am then able to journey to any realm of consciousness. Those realms are labeled the “Lower World Realm”, “Middle World Realm” and “Upper World Realm”. I don’t tend to concern myself with the labels because it makes it seem like these realms are stacked on top of one another, when in actuality it is more like a sphere.



If you were to think of the image of the World Tree you would see a circle with a tree inside of it with branches going up and falling down at the outer edge to find/touch the roots that grow deep and then reach upwards. That is more what the realms are like. They are all interconnected. Although we may begin in one realm it is very easy to travel to a different one as need be. A shamanic journey for a beginner should take no more than 20 minutes. Then a healthy break in required, then another go. An experienced journeyer can take sometimes hours to do the journey, but can also accomplish vast amounts of things within a minute. It is about what the purpose of the journey is.


Having said that, when people participate in things like a Peyote ceremony, there really is no control as to when a journey is done. It completely depends upon how long it takes for the medicine to work its way out of your system. Many find that they are still having a journey of sorts days after the ceremony. This is part of why I don’t do those practices.


First off, I am able to do the journey without ingesting anything into my body other than air. Secondly, I am able to snap out of a journey when needed and have a clear line between this world and the journey world. Thirdly, the medicines are actually traditionally used only to open the person to the other realms of consciousness ONCE. It has only been in the last 200 years that people have started abusing that medicine and using it EVERY time they journey. So in doing this they have missed the point of the initial journey, which was to uncover the ability one already has.


It is my personal opinion here (and I know many who will want to crucify me for saying this) that the continual use of a medicine plant is not just an abuse of the plant, but is also an abuse of one’s self. It is an indication that someone along the way has become too lazy to actually put to use their god-given talents and instead wants to get a “hit” in order to do the journey. This actually disqualifies the authenticity of that journey. When we over use a medicine plant it will…ALWAYS… find a way to bite you back.

Your website says that you are a ceremonial leader and a dreamwalker. What kind of ceremonies do you lead and what is dreamwalking? I’m fascinated!



Wow! Have you noticed that most of your questions are not just one question but several? I LOVE THAT.
Ok. Ceremonies that I lead are things like Drum Circle Ceremonies (those will vary in nature depending upon the purpose of the gathering), Seasonal Celebration Ceremonies (like Spring Equinox or Autumnal Equinox or Yule or Ostara {Easter}), Moon Phase Ceremonies (Full Moon, Waning Moon, New Moon and Waxing Moon…each have their own set of rituals, prayers, spells and so on), Soul Retrieval Ceremonies (helping someone to get soul energy back to the temple of their body that has become detached through a variety of mean such as illness, injury, trauma, surgery, aggressive encounters and so on), Manifestation Ceremonies (such as manifesting prosperity or direction or love in one’s life).


Dream walking is the ability to, in dream time, walk into another’s dream that they are having and assist them. This is a genetic ability for me that I inherited from my father’s family line. It has come in handy when assisting children who are having nightmares, but also adults who are struggling and need some inspiration but are only open to it in the dream time instead of in the waking world. It is also something that is often teamed up with shamanic journeying when I am doing long distance healing work for someone, even on the other side of our little blue planet.


Dream walking is an extension of telepathic work. So if, for example, someone is struggling to remember some event from their childhood, I could, only with their permission, dream walk into their unconscious mind and help them to open that door so that they can access their memory. It is only an opening of the door. It is not in any way altering the memory. It is just revealing what the memory is.


I have used Dream walking to deliver messages from Spirit to people I have either met or have never in this lifetime encountered. At night I do a LOT of work that I never do get paid to do, other than that I pay it forward and as a result good things come to me as well.


Dream walking is also used to access “Medicine Dreams” on behalf of the people of the community or in my family or for individuals who are needing to have a message from Spirit.

What is a Sacred Circle of Stones?



A Sacred Circle of Stones is a circle, or ellipsis, or spiral of stones that is used for sacred purposes. So Medicine Wheels of all kinds fall into that category. I have a Medicine Wheel that is in Spiral form under the treatment table in my healing room. When I open the vortex of that Medicine Wheel it assists in the healing of the energy of the person lying on the table.

Medicine Wheels can also be quite small as opposed to the size of Stonehenge. There are many who use Medicine Wheels that fit on the surface of a coffee table.


What makes it sacred? The initial blessing of the stones, for one, but also the intent behind the circle of stones. One can have a sacred circle of stones inside of which they burn a bonfire for gatherings. This is no less sacred than a Medicine Wheel. It is a place of connection and gathering. As long as no one is throwing a beer bottle into the fire it is all good.

I have heard the term ‘Earth Angel’ – what is that?



I have heard that term. I do not personally work with angels a lot like many nowadays do, but from what I have been able to gather it is an expression that people are now using to describe a “pure soul” in a human body. Please, someone correct me if I have misunderstood that.

The reason I don’t use a term like that is because it gives the impression that everyone else’s soul is somehow tainted, and that is not something I believe in at all.


Have you ever experienced a frightening encounter with a spirit? Can you tell us what happened?


Yes I have. In fact many times. But I am not sure what value sharing this would have. I don’t want to insight fear and panic. What I will say is that there are some spirits who are malevolent and that when we encounter them it very seriously challenges our own strength and fortitude. We always have to be careful as to what we invite into our world. This is why I really do NOT like it when people whimsically use things like séances and Ouija boards. Your really have to know what you are doing to perform a séance and I would never recommend using something like a Ouija board. These things make my life so much more complicated and demanding because it is people such as myself that end up on the front lines helping to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.

What advice can you give as a Shaman to someone who needs more positive energy, abundance and good luck in their lives?Do you recommend any particular stones, charms or herbs?



Well, let me see. First off YOU are the only common denominator in your life, so it is important to look deep within to see what personal decisions, choices and believes you have made or are holding that create negativity in your life. It is not always a matter of “opposites attract”. In fact, it is much more often a matter of “like attracts like”.



So look at how you, yourself, demonstrate negativity and project that out into the world, because, just like a stone cast into a pond of water, everything we send out ripples back. So BE the positive energy you want to see in your world.


Yes it also helps to have things like herbs and crystals at your disposal. So I would recommend something like Rose Quartz as a crystal (which adapts to the energy of the one wearing it and enhances energies with the vibration of Love), Sweet pea blossoms (dried) carried in a sachet will enhance friendliness vibrations. Blessing a coin with magnified abundance and keeping that coin in your pocket creates a charm for abundance to enter into your life.


Do you offer an introductory course in Shamanism? How long is the class typically and what fee is involved? How does a person get in touch with you if they are interested in your services?


I have moved from giving group workshops/classes in Shamanism to keeping that as part of individual sessions. The main reason for that is that I have found that I prefer to teach people in a one-on-one setting. That way each person gets the attention that they need.

Prices for that vary according to how long a session one wants. The learning about Shamanism thing is different to the actual becoming a Shaman thing. I have had a lifetime of learning and was given the order to “hang my shingle” way back when I was (I think) 35, which to me and many others was quite ludicrous because I had not even reached 50 years of age.


But there is also a difference between being an elder and being a shaman. Shamanic practice can be accessed and practiced by a child. Eldership cannot. Now that I am BOTH a Shaman and an Elder in my community I find myself reminding other Elders often to not discount the views of a younger person. That is ageist. Do not discount their gifts or their insights. They are often just as close to Spirit as we are. After all, we may have another 20-30 years before we re-join Spirit. They may have just arrived here in this realm 5 years ago. So they may have better understandings than do we.

So teaching about Shamanism can take a long time, but we also get a LOT of other things…like healing for example…done along the way.

The best way to contact me would likely be through the internet.

or through email;


The website also has within it my BLOG which is chuck full of teachings and inspirations and anecdotes from my life.


A LOT of people visit that because they say it seems that every time I post a new Blog entry I had THEM in mind. Is that another gift not yet uncovered? Perhaps. Or IS it not uncovered? Perhaps I actually AM writing specifically for YOU! Mwahahaha! In all seriousness though, I just write about what I know. The fact that people enjoy it and find comfort and inspiration from it absolutely thrills me and I feel so honored that they are open enough to share that with me.


Natasha: Mr Deerhorn, thank-you so much. It was a total pleasure and such a treat having you on Pizazz News.
Trent: It has been an honor and a privilege to be interviewed. Thank you!