Alberto Villoldo is a psychologist and medical anthropologist who has studied the shamanic healing practices of the Amazon and Andes for over 30 years. At San Francisco State University, he directed the Biological Self-Regulation Laboratory to study how the mind creates psychosomatic health and disease.
One day in his laboratory, Alberto realized that his research had to get bigger instead of smaller, that he was looking out of the wrong end of the microscope. He needed to find a system larger than the neural networks of the brain. Many others were already studying the hardware – Alberto wanted to learn to program the mind to create psychosomatic health.
Alberto closed his lab and traveled to the Amazon – determined to learn from researchers whose vision had not been confined to the lens of a microscope, from people whose body of knowledge encompassed more than the measurable, material world that he had been taught was the only reality. For more than 20 years, he trained with the jungle medicine people. In healing his own soul, Alberto walked the path of the wounded healer and learned to transform old pain, grief, anger and shame to sources of strength and compassion.
He is the founder of the Four Winds Society, an organization dedicated to connecting ancient shamanic traditions with modern medicine and psychology. He is the author of more than 20 bestselling books and an international fellow of The Explorers Club.