1. "Know that most of today's so-called shamans, spiritual teachers, and elders have lost their way. Somewhere along the path they lost their childlike nature. You will recognize them by their over-seriousness, their judgmental pronouncements, and their literalism. Their words will reflect fundamentalism in all sizes and shapes. Do not listen to them. Instead try to play with them, hoping that the disturbance created by your presence might awaken what they have forgotten.

2. "Some will say that you, a shaman, must be seriously concerned about spiritual protection. Be careful not to become too preoccupied with protection. The rituals of protection too easily call forth the dichotomy of good and evil, giving evil more weight than it deserves. We feed evil when we are too serious about it. Stand in the light, feel the love, and then get downright silly. That's a triple whammy: evil hates light, love, and laughter. It will slip in only if one of those three guardians is not present. Of these three, perhaps the most powerful protection is the laughter of a child. Open your spiritual valves with shaking childish merriment. Then you will be ready to do God's work.

3. "There are times to get serious: The experiences of ecstatic energy and visionary rapture will take your breath away. Be serious about them, but only during the moments in which they occur. Afterwards return to levity. Forget forging the truth onto iron. Instead, be available time and time again for the spirit to catch you, ride you, and fly you anew.

4. "There are four sacred corners of the Christian shaman's mystical cross:

• The ecstatic life force (or Holy Ghost power, kundalini, chi)
• Spiritual vision
• Creative expression
• Absurd experience

"Never stay stuck in any one corner. Keep moving from one corner to another. This is the road you must stay on, and you must keep moving on it. The road is circular. It deepens, broadens, and heightens with each cycle you traverse. It is this virtuous cycle that makes the shaman.

5. "Here are four truths to go along with the four corners of the cross:

"No shake, no shaman. You must learn to shake with joy and spiritual fervor.
"No music, no shaman. God talks only through music and rhythm.
"No vision, no shaman. I'm not talking about psychological dreams, but spirit-infused perception, which comes either through sacred dream or waking vision.
"No absurdity, no shaman. There is no such thing as a serious shaman; there are only laughing shamans and serious shams.

6. "The Christian shaman loves all the religions of the world and feels free to play with them in a trickster way. This includes the unwritten religions and the unspoken traditions.

7. "Be your own missionary. Convert one other person to Shamanic Christianity so you have a playmate. Two's a sandlot; three's a party.

8. "There is one other time to be serious. Be very, very serious about your prayer life. Pray religiously and wholeheartedly. You have to show God and the deepest parts of your being that you are sincere about this.

9. "Do more than pray: Act out your desire to make a connection with spirit. Without the enactment of ritual — performing the suggested rituals and conducting the lost directives — it will be more difficult to get inside the mystical gates. Few will enter the gate, because few have the divine madness required to stretch the dichotomies as far as they need to be stretched. Remember, the cross must be stretched to open the gate to the mysteries.

10. "One word sums it all up: love. This is all about love, and only love. It is never about having power, being special, or getting magic. Love is the God we serve, wild, complete love in all possible forms and manifestations. Love is the Mystical Christ, the Holy Mother, and all the saints. The Big Love is the name of the shaman's worship. Surrender to it, and it will set you free.

11. "Say, 'Thank you,' or 'Thank you, Jesus' or 'Thank you, Mary' or 'Thank you, Holy Mother' or 'Thank you, Holy Father' or 'Thank you, Lord' over and over throughout each day and night. This is your mantra and secret saying. Thank the Lord for every breath and every experience. When you pray for guidance and don't get a big vision, say 'Thank you.'

12. "Always remember that there is really no such thing as an individual. No one lives outside of relationship — relationships with significant others, community, and the natural world. What you may regard as 'work on self' is always 'work with others.' The opposite is also true: Your work with others and the outside world simultaneously becomes work on your internal nature. The outer and inner are mirrored and aligned."