This week our guest is Francis Weller, MFT. He is a psychotherapist, writer and soul activist who has developed a style he calls soul-centered psychotherapy, synthesizing diverse streams of thought from psychology, anthropology, mythology, alchemy, indigenous cultures and poetic traditions. His book Entering the Healing Ground: Grief, Ritual and the Soul of the World discusses creating pathways to reclaiming our indigenous soul, what psychologist Carl Jung called the “unforgotten wisdom” that resides in the heart of the psyche.
Recognizing the lack of existing dialogue and the profound need for sacred ritual and grief work in his community and beyond, Weller founded Wisdom Bridge in Northern CA, an organization that offers educational programs that integrate the wisdom from traditional cultures with the insights and knowledge gathered from western cultures.
Beginning in 1997, Francis helped to create Men of Spirit, an intensive year-long initiation program designed to restore the masculine community as a resource for cultural renewal. Since its inception, Francis has taken nearly two hundred men across this threshold, comprising twelve clans of men from Southern California to the Canadian border. He has also facilitated a number of mixed-gender villages with the intention of creating sustainable communities that can tend the need of the soul for belonging.
A gifted therapist and teacher, he has been described as a jazz artist, improvising and moving fluidly in and out of deep emotional territories with groups and individuals bringing imagination and attention to places often held with judgment and shame. He is currently completing his second book, A Trail on the Ground: Tracking the Ways of the Indigenous Soul. He has also produced CDs to address the healing of shame with “The Heart of Healing” and “Restoring the Soul of the World.”
Francis received a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin Green Bay and two Master’s Degrees from John F. Kennedy University. He has taught at Sonoma State University, New College of California and the Sophia Center in Oakland, CA. His writings have appeared in anthologies and journals exploring the confluence between psyche, nature and culture. Francis leads trainings in community building, men’s initiation programs and grief rituals.