Matthew Thomas Baker has been engaged in spiritual study, transformation, and arts education for over thirty years. Matthew earned an MFA in creative writing from Arizona State University and a master’s degree in psychology and counseling from Prescott College, focusing on adolescent development, depth and archetypal psychology, shamanism, and transpersonal psychology. He also completed a seven-year spiritual study course through the international Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids and tutored others in the course for several years. Prior to his retirement in 2022, Matthew was a founding educational leader of a highly successful and innovative American high school for the arts.
At the age of thirty, while reading traditional Buddhist “pointing-out instructions” in Ken Wilber’s book The Eye of Spirit, Matthew experienced a spontaneous awakening and recognition of the conscious Awareness that all beings share. That awakening radically altered his view of himself, others, and even objects in the world. Everything appeared to be spontaneously arising out of one awake field of Awareness.
In the years since, he has learned to live into that initial insight, and unconditioned awareness is always accessible to his mind and heart. In addition, the intelligence of Awareness and the soul has burned down and rebuilt his personality, leaving no figurative stone untransformed. Matthew suspects that the transformational process never really ends. There is always more that can unfold on our human journey as we grow into wiser, more compassionate, and more creative beings.
Matthew is the founder and spiritual director of the Institute for Nondual Shamanism and currently splits his time between England and Portugal.
Aiden Kane, Engineer
I first met Matt on an online NDS journey practice session. I was struck by his immediacy and vast knowledge of so many different traditions and teachings, both Spiritual and Psychological. His depth of understanding enables him to effect transformational change. His ability to relate these to my own experience has given my life a new meaning. He has given me a new richness, understanding and acceptance of myself. His frank language and humor cut straight to the heart of any enquiry. I always enjoy working with him and walk away feeling enlightened and curious.
John Silkey, Management Consultant
Matt’s approach as a coach and advisor has been a revelation. His patience has allowed our conversations to emerge, rather than being driven by an idea or agenda. Together we co-create the conversation that we need to have, not the one I thought was needed, and the results are far more profound and revealing. He sets a comfortable energy that is inviting into a nondual space, allowing what is to just be, and what wants to be discussed to arise between us. In those moments where I seem hesitant or preoccupied his fluency in shamanic journeys offers a great and fun and relaxing path to deeper parts of my consciousness. Matt and I don’t “meet”; we go on a journey.
Calista Mincks, Modern Dancer
Within just my first conversation with Matt, I knew that I had stumbled upon a connection that would change my life, though I never could have foreseen the truth that would unfold. We developed a precious archive of lessons and conversations regarding poetry, artistry, truth, love, death, transformation, mythical exploration. Little did I know that something was arising with each of these endeavors that would later surface to our awareness as an ocean of non-dual truth. I say ocean because that is truly the feeling as the non-dual self begins to pervade our surroundings. It permeates seamlessly to encompass our hearts, minds and the environment. This kind of space allows for our reflections and discoveries to effortlessly arise with a subtle power. I am grateful to have such a genuine teacher and friend to sail within the ever-thrashing and gleaming sea of transformation.
Chloe Dubisch, Graduate Student, English Literature
Poetry, Myth and The Art of Transformation (taught by Matthew for many years) is a class like no other. The curriculum teaches students how to exist honestly and earnestly. I learned how to seek with open eyes, to value myself, and to practice what I have always been passionate about. It was a place where my words were always valid, and where logic was not the absolute dictator. This class is truly like no other, and its effects cannot be replicated. I learned not to discard fear, but to live it. I learned to be kind to myself, and to accept the reality that is all around me. In all my years of schooling, I have never taken a course as invaluable as this one.